Logic Pro X Announced: A Quick Look at What’s New

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Hot on the heels of Ableton’s release of Live 9, Apple has released the newest version of its popular audio manipulation and production software Logic Pro, this version being the 10th and so dubbed “X”.

The update brings a lot of new gadgets and workflow additions that Apple promises will revolutionize productivity and guarantee uninterrupted production of the next killer track.

A NEW WORKFLOW

Logic seems to be heavily eyeing the intuitive nature of Ableton with a lot of their updates, the most notable being “Track Stacks,” a feature that allows the collapsing of multiple tracks into a singular stack that can be routed to a bus or auxiliary source. Sound familiar?

The feature seems very similar to Ableton’s grouping feature, which allows for the collapsing of tracks into a single group track that can then have audio effects placed over all tracks at once. The main feature difference with Logic is there does seem to be some sort of auto-grouping feature – Apple gives the example of all drums being auto-routed through to a single “stack.” No word, however, on whether this is truly automatic functionality or whether it simply analyzes the track instruments to give a name to the stack.

The other cosmetic change involves a change to the mixer layout of Logic, with gain reduction now visible in the basic mixer window, potentially saving huge amounts of time during mixdown. This, along with basic visual EQs in the mixdown, elevate the mixer window to a pretty functional counterpart to Pro Tools’ much touted mixdown window.

Finally, Apple has added the ability to use “Smart Controls,” which function much in the same as macros in Live, which can control multiple effects by routing them to an individual knob. The interface for this, however, looks pretty spectacular, and seems to add functionality beyond knob-encoders to device on switches and faders.

NEW AUDIO LIBRARIES

Mac integration is here in full force, and in our opinion, is really where the software shines: while the ability to export straight to Soundcloud is a fun feature for those looking to upload some works in progress for critique, it’s not ultimately that helpful for releases that might require mastering or mixdown adjustments by other people. However, the ability to transfer data between Logic X and other Mac apps like Final Cut Pro seems like it could provide really easy workarounds for those looking to quickly put promo videos or music cues together. Did we mention there’s also an iPad app that controls the mixer remotely?

Beyond cosmetic upgrades, Logic seems to mostly add functionality that removes a lot of the need for external plug-ins. It’s now got an AutoTune/Melodyne equivalent aptly dubbed “Flex Pitch,” a whole host of new sampled material including some very warm sounding acoustic drum and vintage key samples, and some guitar rig emulators like a Bass Amp sculptor and Stompbox simulations. Apple hasn’t provided an audio examples of the latter, so little information is out there about how quality the emulation is, but based on even the built-in emulations in Garageband and previous iterations of Logic, we can expect good things. Lastly, Logic now includes a host of MIDI effects, like arpeggiators and scale/velocity auto-adjustments, and now has a MIDI feature set that seems about on par with Ableton Live 9’s.

Ultimately, the updates are interesting considering Logic’s place in the world of music (specifically dance music) production. Apple added plenty of new functionality that aids in  general production, but hasn’t seemed to make anything that caters specifically to the “EDM” market (not that it’s necessarily a bad thing!). We’ll be interested to see if dance music producers who typically work in Logic will take advantage of the possibilities of the additions of live instrumentation plug-ins like “Drummer,” or whether people will continue to rely largely on VSTs in making .

The real selling point of Logic Pro X, beyond a lot of the upgrades, is its price point: 200$ for software that now rivals all of the functionality of Live, (or at least Live 8) is a number that’s hard to argue. We’ll be grabbing a copy of this software and doing a more in-depth review, so stay tuned!

Learn more about Logic Pro X on Apple’s official site.

  • SJCONGO

    Logic Pro X = best DAW ever !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Styluscrime

    Don’t buy it unless you are a very very professional producer.. It will only work on OSX 10.8.4 and woks on 64 Bit system… And it will not detect your usual 32 bit plug-in… Stick to the previous Logic Pro or Ableton or other DAW

  • Mr. Meoff

    There arequite a few EDM artists out there using Logic.

  • Teddy Savaki

    Adapted the Live workflow.. aside from what makes Live.. Live! The session view/clip launcher.. that’d have been a practical addition so I don’t have to switch platforms!

  • David De Garie-Lamanque

    wow! finally Logic is getting with the times! i might have to upgrade to try it out!
    when i switched from Logic 8 to Live 8 i thought “never again will i use it” but the workflow seems much improved now.

  • OHohOHohOHokay

    I would say at least half of the “new” features that you mentioned in this article were already in Logic 9. Many of them have just been made to be more user friendly. The “track stacks” are called track folders. The “smart controls” were also already possible but just required patching and routing from the mixer window. I also really don’t like the bias towards Live. I’m not going to say one is better than the other but the subtle shots at Logic being inferior to Live are just unnecessary. They’re just different beasts entirely. Live is better for making dubstep therefore Live>Logic?

    • David De Garie-Lamanque

      yeah, one cannot say that a program is superior to another one, they just have different workflows and functions that attract different people. even though i prefer Live’s workflow over Logic, the latter has, in my opinion superior bundled instruments like Ultrabeat and ES2 and a far more complete effects suite (except for a beat repeat)

  • One notable “feature” in this release is that only 64 bit Audio Unit plugins are supported. So, for example the great reFX Vanguard and quadraSID will not work with Logic Pro X.

    And as for the (free) iPad app, it requires iOS 6, so it won’t work with gen 1 iPad.

  • T’CharleS

    The price is nice… but it’s a pain to realize there is no upgrade price (not to mention it means there won’t be any in the futeure, regardless of the version)

    • Yeah, but it’s also worth to remember that Logic used to cost over 1000 USD and the upgrades typically were around 100 USD. Now you get the whole software package (with a HUGE 35 Gb library) for 200 USD.

      Also, this is a first major version of Logic since 2009, so 200 USD in 4 years doesn’t sound bad to me.

  • Guest

    MIDI feature set that seems about on par with Ableton Live 9?s.

    PLEASE AMEND THAT STATEMENT. Having used Ableton since version 1… Still, EVEN in Version 9 …Ableton is crippled regarding Midi, when comparing to full blown Professional daw like Logic/Cubase/Digital Performer etc.

    • Obscure Machines

      How so? (only used Live, Logic, and Fruity Loops)

      • Steve Francesco

        Key functions in live are not easily controlled via midi out of the box .. e.g. Quantize / Browsing / Transpose (fine transpose) etc etc .. lots of stuff relies on keyboard input. Everything mappable by keyboard should be mappable via midi and everything via midi should provide feedback of choice depending on what controller you use. Bloody hell virtually every DJ software gives a million times better midi control function than Ableton.

        • Obscure Machines

          Word

  • Ally Mac

    beforw many of you go off, being misled that Logic has been taking
    features from “Ableton”… I would simply like to inform the unaware
    that ALL of these features, have been simply stripped from Cubase. Same
    as for the last 10 yrs, DAW Devs,simply wait to see what Cubase
    introduces in a new revision. The rest simply follow.

    Track Stack -> Cubase Folders, SX3 (1995)
    New mixer -> Cubase 7
    Score editor -> Score editor, SX3 (1995)
    SoundCloud export -> SoundCloud export, since C7
    Drummer and drum machine -> Drum map, SX3 (1995) Groove Agent, C5 (2009)
    Bass Amp and new pedals -> VST Amp Rack, C6
    Leslie -> Leslie plugin, SX1 (2002)
    Retro Synth -> Every version has new ones. Some currently VST class leading – Retrologue & Padshop
    MIDI Plugins -> Since SX3 (1995)
    MIDI Arpeggiator -> Since SX3 (1995)
    Flex Pitch -> Vari Audio, C5 (2009)
    Smart Controls -> Quick Control, since C4 or C5 (2006)
    Sound Library -> Media Bay and Loop Bay, since C4 (2006)
    Logic Remote -> Cubase iC, since C6

    Internet DAW Collaboration with Sample Accurate Project Recording Sync Recording features.

    ONLY CUBASE – Performer SE!

    Just a simple factual reminder, Im glad for the Logic boys getting an update, It now stops me referring to Logic as “Abandoneware”

    • Jonesy

      same with PC Vs Mac.
      They stole all the good stuff.
      but just did it better. =)

      • Ally Mac

        Cubase runs on both Pc & Mac…..With the reviews already coming in….Logic has officially been titled “Apple Garage Band Pro”.

      • Devin

        You got that one waaaay wrong.

    • Paul Sombric

      Someone has been doin’ some research…lol! Just remember the prices though…

  • Nude Photo Music

    All the very high-quality instruments from the previous versions are still in there. Not sure how you’re comparing Retro Synth to the free Tal plugins, since it includes a lot more functionality and variety in terms of sound generation. Logic’s instruments and effects have always been top notch – I’m certain that hasn’t changed. Also – the drummer can easily play sampler kits or other instruments, and the bass & guitar effects are very useable for dance music production. The arpeggiator is very much useable for dance music. Not sure what you’re considering necessary for “EDM” production – perhaps handy genre-specific templates? A giant “insert fat drop here” button? 😉

    Several of the people on the Logic team are very much into electronic music production. One of the artists on my label, Jon Gillham, is one of the QA Engineers there.

    I’ve been using Logic for 15+ years, alongside Protools, and Ableton. They all have their strengths. Some of Logic’s strengths are that it sounds fantastic, has amazing timing and swing, great automation, and wonderful effects and instruments for electronic music production. That hasn’t changed. 🙂

    • Nude Photo Music

      Also – smart knobs and stacks. I’d say that’s pretty key stuff for ‘EDM’.

  • Lujxio

    You guys haven’t even downloaded it, I could of read this info off Apple’s website

    • Yeah but I don’t visit apple website everyday looking to see whether a new version of logic, GarageBand etc. has been released… I do however visit djtechtools everyday and more…so thanks for the heads up djtechtools…look forward to the full review shortly….

    • Nick Perloff

      We’ll be doing in depth work with Logic, but for now we just wanted to bring our readers news as it happens.

      • Lujxio

        Can you guys look into the Midi Effect Scripter, that allows you to use JavaScript to create midi effects? No one has really talked about it

    • KIO

      You could of ….? Like in the verb ofing? I of, he ofs? Last weekend we were ofing so much…. Whatever happened to the word have?

  • LP23

    Seems like you guys are getting out of your depth.

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