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Free Looper coming with Tiger!
Today I found out that you get a looping AU plug-in when upgrading a
Mac to 10.4. You have to install the Developers kit to get at it.
This looper's feature set makes seems a bit inspired by the Repeater.
I still have to give it the real-world hands-on test. For you that
might be interested but not yet have upgraded to Tiger I'm pasting in
the ReadMe file for AULooper. I've been reading and drooling here for
the last five minutes. Indeed very nice!
The AU-Lab is a AU host application that also comes free with Tiger
(Developer pack, is on the CD)
Greetings from Sweden
--> iTunes Music Store / / /
The AULooper Audio Unit is an audio looper for live performance and
was developed for use by musicians and DJs.
It's able to take live audio input (mono or stereo) and record audio
for immediate and seamless playback in an interactive fashion. So,
for example, a drummer
could play a beat for several bars, mark the recording start and end
points with a MIDI
foot controller, then immediately hear the looped section of audio
seamlessly in time with their
playing. The drummer, could then play a different rhythm on top of
the loop and continue
recording more layers of loops, either by overdubbing on top of the
original loop, or recording
into a separately controllable loop. Currently, AULooper supports
up to four stereo loops.
At any given time, one of the four loops will be selected. Any of
the four loops may be
selected at any time by clicking on the loop itself.
To record a loop, simply click on the "Record" button to mark the
time. Whatever audio is currently being played and input will be
starting at this exact time. When the "Record" button is clicked a
the loop end time will be marked, recording will stop, and the newly
loop will begin playback. Clearly, it's very important to time the
start and end record
operations in perfect time with the rhythm you're trying to capture.
Once an initial loop has been recorded, the "Retro Record"
command may be used to capture audio which has just been played.
Instead of requiring
the musician to click on the "Record" button twice, once to indicate
the start time,
and once to indicate the end time. The "Retro Record" button simply
end time of the loop, and the start time will be automatically
assumed to be one loop
time in the past. The "Retro Record" command is very handy for a
he is playing along with an already recorded loop and realizes he has
something interesting. Clicking on "Retro Record" will take what he
has just played
and record that as a loop synchronized with the first.
* Play (retriggers playback at the start of all loops)
(may be used for "stutter" effects if used repeatedly in a
* Stop (stops all playback, playback will re-start with "Play")
* Global Reverse (toggles back and forth between forward and
backwards playback for the global audio mix)
* Undo (undo/redo for the last edit or record operation)
(undoable operations are: record, copy, paste, clear, divide,
* Clear All (erases all the loops and prepares for a fresh loop
* Set Start (at the moment this command is received, re-defines the
starting point for all loops)
(The "Play" command will then retrigger playback from this new
point in the loop)
* Slip Start Time Ahead "<" (Similar to "Set Start", but
incrementally nudges start time ahead for all loops)
* Slip Start Time Behind ">" (Similar to "Set Start", but
incrementally nudges start time behind for all loops)
* Resync (Sometimes when playing with the "Reverse" commands it's
possible for the playback lines in the loops
to get out of synchronization. "Resync" will selectively
change the loop's start times to match the current mix.
Subsequent "Play" commands will then retrigger playback at this
* Mixdown (records the current mix, excluding the live input, into
the currently selected loop)
* Pitch (global pitch control, additive with the individual loop
* Input Blend (allows adjustment of the live input versus the looped
(all the way left is input only; all the way to the right is
only the loop playback)
* Master Volume
* volume, including mute, solo, and cue
* playback direction (forward / reverse)
* loop start point
- Set Start (at the moment this command is received, re-defines
the starting point of the selected loop)
(The "Play" command will then retrigger playback from this
new point in the loop)
- Slip Start Time Ahead "<" (Similar to "Set Start", but
incrementally nudges start time ahead in the loop)
- Slip Start Time Behind ">" (Similar to "Set Start", but
incrementally nudges start time behind in the loop)
- "Scan Slip" slider (allows the loop start point to be
continuously adjusted; this can be interesting if moved
rhythmically with the timing of the loop)
* loop beat length (determines tempo along with loop length in
seconds - default is 4 beats - one measure of 4/4 )
There are also commands for editing the currently selected loop:
* Divide (divides the length of the loop by two, discarding the
* Multiply (double the loop length, appending of copy of the original
This allows longer overdubs on top of the originally shorter loop.
* Copy / Paste / Clear commands for operating on the selected loop
* Record / Retro-Record will record into the selected loop
* Sync (Internal or Host Sync) (normal default operation is
"Internal" which allows the musician to control
the playback transport; "Host Sync" will syncronize loop
playback with the host's timeline)
* Tempo (once a loop has been recorded it's playback speed may be
adjusted with the "tempo" slider;
the initial tempo is determined by the recorded loop's length
and the "beat length" of the loop which is
assumed initially to be four beats, but may be changed by the
user in the edit text field)
* Tap (an alternate way to adjust the tempo by "tap-tempo", clicking
on the button repeatedly at the desired tempo;
this button may be hot-mapped to MIDI)
Any of the commands, such as "Record" and "Retro Record" may be hot-
a MIDI message, such as note-on, or program change. To do this,
on the button corresponding to the command you wish to assign, then
press the MIDI key,
or foot controller. Continuous controllers may also be assigned to
the sliders such as pitch
and volume by Cmd-clicking the slider, then moving the continuous
Double-clicking some sliders will return it to its default setting.
If AULooper is hosted inside of AU Lab, then the MIDI mappings
will be saved when the document is saved. Also, the MIDI mappings
may be examined
and edited within AU Lab by choosing "MIDI Effect Editor" in the
upper right menu
of the AULooper UI window.
There are six output busses which may be configured depending on the
The first output is the "main mix" which is the only output which
will typically be connected
by default in a host. It provides the fully mixed output of all four
loops, plus the audio input
(according to the input blend control). The second output is "cue".
It can be used to audition
any combination of loops where "cue" is enabled. The last four
outputs are individual loop
outputs. Some hosts (such as AU Lab) can be configured to receive
all four loop outputs
separately, allowing individual control of inline effects and sends
on a per-loop basis.
The "AU Lab" document "Looper.trak" can be used to explore the looper
with all of its output busses
connected in the mixer. It's also possible to create a simpler
document in "AU Lab" with just the "main mix"
output bus connected if you simply add the "AULooper" as an AudioUnit
with live input.