I’ve been impressed by Rax, the virtual effects and instrument rig for Mac, for some time. I marveled at its musician-friendly fullscreen interface and live visualizations in Rax 2.0, lamented its lack of popularity and eventual demise at developer Plasq, breathed a sigh of relief as it found a new home at Audiofile Engineering, and noted the unmistakable similarity of Apple’s MainStage. (MainStage, for the record, still doesn’t do a lot of what Rax 2 does.)

Now, Rax is due for a major update, and it’s getting one, in the form of a new UI, powerful routing, and clever MIDI mapping capabilities. It’s still not for everyone — there are other instrument/effects hosts, there are features in DAWs like Ableton Live’s Racks, and of course Kore. But it could be a worthy addition to your Mac arsenal, and it promises to fit certain production and performance jobs very, very well. Beyond Rax, the whole category, including those other tools, could use more attention and more active musicians. I hope the developers of those other tools have a good look at Rax 3, while they’re at it (or second look, in the case of Apple). More on this soon; in the meantime, here’s a preview video:

Rax 3 Sneak Peek from Audiofile Engineering on Vimeo.

Via primasluta on Twitter.