There are already some exceptional touch controllers on iOS. But that means it’s doubly time for something new.
Even among the best touch apps for iPad, there are some common themes. Layouts, if they’re editable at all, generally require a computer app for making and adjusting sets of controls. And (while Lemur is a notable exception), many restrict you to virtual simulations of conventional buttons and faders, rather than using a range of novel controls.
That seems to ignore some of the potential of the device. If you’re already using your fingers to play controls, why not draw those layouts on the iPad, too? And since the iPad is a blank slate, why not make new controls that use your finger gestures? And why should you only be able to control some apps and hardware, and not others – why not use those controls for MIDI hardware, computer software, and other internal apps, instruments, and noisemakers on the iPad?
… which brings us to Beatsurfing.
- Draw controls right on the screen, without leaving the app.
- “Surf,” don’t just “tap” controls, as they describe it. (You can see what they mean in the video: you can run fingers smoothly from one control to another.)
- Imaginative 3D controls, not just fake knobs and sliders and such.
- Connect objects to one another, so they can interact, via a series of behaviors.
- Connect anything with MIDI. Use the app to control hardware (via Core MIDI).
- Use the app to control software (via WiFi and MIDI).
- Use the app to control other apps (using any app that supports background MIDI operation).
US$11.99 | 9,99 €
Hope to have a full review of this one soon.
More videos and details on this app, which is released by Belgian label / artist collective Vlek (home to Squeaky Lobster, Cupp Cave, Sagat and Ssaliva)…
Artist-developers Herrmutt Lobby and Yaniv De Ridder collaborated on the app:
Interestingly, the collective that is Herrmutt Lobby draws on experience in hardware, not software, with custom MIDI controllers for scratching and something called the Beatfader (which, in turn, works with a Max for Live device).