Apple has released its updated Logic Pro X 10.2 ($200) recording app, finally answering the question of what would happen to Camel Audio’s Alchemy music editing suite after Apple bought the company earlier this year. Apple has folded Alchemy into Logic Pro X and rebranded it as a powerful synthesizer that allows for the combination of four types of synthesis in the same plug-in. The updated Alchemy comes with a large library of sounds and the ability to search them by category, timbre, and articulation keywords to quickly locate useful sounds. Once they’re discovered, favorites can also be organized for later use with star ratings and custom keywords. Various synth engines can combine distinct elements from up to four sources to create entirely new sounds — blending the sound of a thunderclap with a snare hit or folding a handclap into the sound of a crashing wave, for example. Sounds can be dragged onto the Transform Pad for manipulation using eight sound variations, and performance controls can be customized by the user or automated to add intricacies to the music on their own. New built-in arpeggiation gives users the ability to create complex compositions using a single chord, and with up to 16 effects able to be applied to any sound, the range of possibilities is seemingly infinite.
Logic Pro X 10.2 expands on the previous version’s focus on EDM and hip-hop production, with updated drum machine-style sequencing allowing users to easily change rate, note length, and velocity on the fly to create intricate rhythms. The new Piano Roll Editor provides the ability to add or subtract a series of notes with a brush tool and provides new graphic tools to compress and expand a selection of notes. The addition of a collapsed view allows for more information to be viewed in less space, and the Drum Name view makes it easier to spot drum-hit notes. A more powerful mixer helps to quickly assign channels and automate their levels from a single fader, and an accompanying Logic Remote app for an iPad lets users control Logic Pro X software running on a Mac from a distance, allowing them to play software instruments or adjust sound levels from within the recording booth. The new version is also integrated with Apple Music, so artists who register can share updates directly from Logic Pro X to their Connect page. MailDrop and AirDrop support for OS X Yosemite that appeared in version 10.1 is still present, but no mention is made of further updates specific to El Capitan.