At long last, one of the most beloved and unusual Mac sound
creation applications has made it to OS X, with vastly expanded
features. The brainchild of Bryce creator Eric Wenger, the first
version of U&I Software's MetaSynth was popular with the likes of
Aphex Twin for its far-out, one-of-a-kind sound production and the
ability to generate audio by painting or importing pictures. This
builds on that tradition:

  • Completely new Image Synth architecture for creating sounds from images with new signal sources and plenty of other changes
  • Image Filter 'room' that takes all the features of Image Synth and applies it to filters
  • An entirely new synth built on spectral granular synthesis, unlike, well, anything you Earth creatures have yet used
  • Envelope-controlled DSP effects (wild granular effects were one of the most underrated features of MetaSynth 2)

Existing users will be glad to know there's finally real-time editing,
full-fidelity preview, up to 24-bit performance, and save-to-disk
capabilities, correcting annoyances in the previous version. And while
the software appears to have a steeper price, built-in MIDI and audio
multitracking mean you don't have to buy a separate app like Xx (though
those are due for an update, too, say U&I).

See the MetaSynth product page, or check out full details on what's new. More when I get some time with it; there's a demo available.

Cost: US$499 (16-bit); $599 Pro (24-bit, audio recording
Compatibility: OS 9/X; Pro is OS X-only
Availability: Now