Apple has unveiled Logic Pro 7 (Mac; $999) and Logic Express 7 (Mac; $299). Logic Pro 7 includes new software instruments, over 100 workflow enhancements, new mastering plug-ins, and support for Apple Loops. One of the most interesting new features is support for distributed audio processing, which allows you to network Mac computers for additional processing power (G5s are recommended). According to Apple, a distributed audio network, using a 1-gigabit Ethernet connection, will support 128 stereo audio streams.
A number of new instruments are also part of the upgrade. Sculpture has an extensive feature-set devoted entirely to physical modeling. Ultrabeat, designed for creating rhythm parts, offers virtual-analog and FM synthesis, physical modeling, sample playback, and a step sequencer. EFM1, an FM synthesizer, completes the picture.
Guitarists can plug directly into their computer and use Guitar Amp Pro, which models amps and speakers and offers tremolo and reverb effects. Other effects plug-ins include Ringshifter, which combines frequency shifting and ring modulation; Vocal Transformer, for control over pitch and formant change; and Pitch Correction, to correct intonation problems with vocal tracks. A Linear Phase EQ plug-in is also part of the upgrade, as is Match EQ, which can impart the frequency spectrum of one audio signal onto another. For analysis chores, the Multimeter plug-in offers a correlation meter, a spectrum analyzer, a stereo-phase meter, and a level meter.
Logic Pro 7 also supports Apple Loops and comes with the GarageBand instrument set, allowing you to open and work on projects created with Apple GarageBand.
Apple has also introduced two new Jam Packs for GarageBand. Jam Pack 2: Remix Tools ($99) offers more than 2,000 loops, 20 new beat kits (Techno, R&B, House, Trance), new synth and sound effect instruments, and classic drum machines from Roland (TR-808, TR-909, TR-606, CR-78). Jam Pack 3: Rhythm Section ($99) includes 2,000 loops and over 50 new instruments, with new drums (Jazz Brushes, Indie Rock, Warehouse Kit), basses (Motown, Liverpool, Progressive Rock, Unplugged), and guitars (Dobro Slide, Bluegrass Banjo, Bluesy Acoustic, Heavy Metal Electric). For more information, visit www.apple.com.