Capsule Review:  Buy it — NOW!

originally posted 10/19/2011

Christmas 2011 Update: Moog Music Inc. now offers Animoog for iPhone at an introductory price of $0.99, and has put the iPad version on sale for $9.99 (regularly $29.99).

A year ago, we wrote about the mixed reviews for Moog’s first iOS app: Filtatron.  Our main complaint then was about the performance interface.  What a difference a year makes. We are picking Animoog as the MMT Editor’s Choice for Best Synthesizer App for the iPad.

Animoog outshines Filtatron in every respect, but has blindingly better performance controls.  There is a keyboard with adjustable spacing, and each key can act as a slider to adjust user-selected parameters — providing effects similar to aftertouch on a physical synth keyboard. And the X/Y pad is both a visual and auditory treat.  There is a lot of movement in these sounds, and you can see and control it by dragging a green dot around the 8 x 16 grid.

We usually save the video until the end, but go ahead and press play to listen to the demo while you read the rest of the post.

A Tour of Animoog from Moog Music on Vimeo.

Sounds pretty good, eh?  Here’s what Wax808 had to say in their 5-star review from the iTunes Store:

First of all let me say that I am a hardware purist, I hate using computers for making music. I also own a Moog Little Phatty, a DSI Mopho, and have owned a few other analog synths in the past. At first glance this appears to be a whole new type of interface and way to modulate classic synth sounds. The reality is that this is an incredibly deep and beautiful sounding instrument. Use the iPad as a sound module and reap the rewards of the continued work of Bob Moog and Steve Jobs. Absolutely stunning offering.

Now for the big news: Animoog is selling for an introductory price of $0.99 for 30 days only (it was introduced on 10/17/2011).  After that, the regular price is $29.99.

We especially like the options for both preset and user-defined scales, and the built-in recording module. Additional features are listed below, or go to the Moog site for more info.

Key Features:

• Anisotropic Synth Engine (ASE) – An exciting new Moog technology that allows the user to move dynamically through an X/Y space of unique timbres to create an expressive and constantly evolving soundscape.

• Timbre page – Assemble unique sounds in the X/Y space from timbres of a wide variety of vintage and modern Moog synthesizers and pedals. Note: this is NOT simple sample playback.

• Polyphonic Modulation – Simply slide your fingers to control multiple modulation parameters in Animoog right from the keys.

• Polyphonic Pitch Shifting – Easily manipulate the exact pitch of each note in a chord by rotating or sliding your fingers.

• Delay Module – A classic analog style ping pong delay.

• Thick Module – From bit crushing to unison voice detuning and drive, this module adds depth, edge and character to Animoog’s already massive sound palette.

• Moog Filter – The classic four-pole Moog ladder filter with High Pass, Low Pass and Band Pass modes.

• Record Module – Record your performance and overdub new layers, or play along live. Transfer recordings between Animoog and any other apps which support AudioCopy/AudioPaste

• Path Module – Direct ASE through Animoog’s X/Y space to create new expressive and shifting sounds that will blow your mind!

• Orbit Module – Control the rate of orbit in the X/Y space around the path you created for subtle to insane voice manipulation.

• Flexible Modulation Matrix – Amp, Filter and Mod Envelopes, LFO with infinitely variable wave shapes and sync, and four super flexible and assignable modulation slots.

• MIDI in/out – Use your Little Phatty or any other MIDI controller to control Animoog.