Slicing, remixing, looping, "live performance-oriented features" … this is Digidesign we’re talking about, right? Digi’s Advanced Instrument Research (A.I.R.) unit, the fruits of the acquisition of Wizoo, may have a pretentious name, but they’ve been doing some pretty great work on new instruments. The new project, Transfuser, will have to enter some crowded waters. Loop slicing and handling already works pretty nicely in Ableton Live (especially with Live 7’s drum racks), in instrument form in FL Studio 8’s awesome Edison and Slicex, and in tools like fxpansion’s GURU. (Superficially, at least, Transfuser bears more than a passing resemblance to the latter in its overall UI layout. And then there’s the fact that the knobs look like they were lifted directly from Live.)

Of course, Transfuser isn’t for FL Studio users. As with previous AIR releases, the Digi-owned Wizoo now make plug-ins for Pro Tools only. And if you are a Pro Tools user, you don’t have to listen to me or try to squint at the screenshots: you can take Transfuser for a test drive free. Download the plug-in for Pro Tools (LE/HD/M-Powered) before June 25, and it’ll operate for three months, no restrictions.

Transfuser Preview [Digidesign]

I can already see from these shots that this isn’t quite the way I’d want to work, personally, let alone enticing enough to make me deal with Pro Tools as a host. But "groove-making" is different for different people, so I’d be very eager to hear what someone else thinks. If you’d like to write up a mini-review for CDM, let us know.