Granular synthesis involves manipulating tiny fragments of audio, known as grains, to create evolving, complex textures. WaveCloud, recently released by 4Pockets, brings this innovative form of synthesis to iOS devices in a flexible plugin format.
Designed specifically for use in hosts and DAWs, WaveCloud is an AUv3 plugin that delivers professional-grade granular synthesis tools without the typical cost. Despite its depth, it offers an intuitive, creative workflow on the go.
Sound Design Powerhouse
At its core, WaveCloud provides an advanced granular engine that can mangle sounds in endless ways. With morphing oscillators, filters, envelopes, and effects too, it’s a sound designer’s playground.
Sculpting and sequencing options for the grains allow for both precision control and happy accidents. From delicate atmospheres to glitchy rhythms, WaveCloud opens up creative possibilities beyond traditional synthesis.
Check out the video below to learn everything you need to know about WaveCloud.
Streamlined Mobile Workflow and UI
While extremely capable under the hood, WaveCloud doesn’t overwhelm on the small iOS screen. The interface focuses on visualizing the granular manipulations in a musician-friendly way.
Speaking of the app’s UI, I’m not a big fan of the realistic knob style, but that’s a minor complaint and a very subjective one. It’s worth mentioning that the app’s color scheme is fully customizable, including the knobs!
Useful additions like the audio and preset managers help you wrangle sounds efficiently on mobile devices. And full MIDI/MPE control options allow for hands-on tweaking.
Alternatives to WaveCloud for Granular Synthesis on iOS
If you’re diving into the world of granular synthesis on iOS and are curious about what other apps are out there, here’s a list of noteworthy alternatives to WaveCloud:
Bleass Granulizer is a versatile granular processing app that allows for immersive sound design. It’s known for its user-friendly interface and the ability to create a wide range of textures from any audio input.
iPulsaret stands out with its polyphonic capabilities, allowing users to layer multiple grains for rich and complex soundscapes. It’s a powerful tool for those looking to explore granular synthesis in depth.
SpaceCraft is celebrated for its live input granular processing (see our Spacecraft review), enabling users to manipulate incoming audio in real-time. Its polyphonic playback feature adds to its performance capabilities, making it a favorite among live performers.
FRMS from Imaginando combines granular and FM synthesis, offering a unique approach to sound creation. Its dual synthesis method provides a broad sonic palette for experimental and traditional musicians alike.
Fluss is the result of a collaboration between sound artist Hainbach and developer Bram Bos. It’s designed to deliver a tactile and experimental granular experience, with a focus on creating evolving soundscapes.
Sylo Synthesizer is a free option that proves entry into granular synthesis doesn’t have to be expensive. It offers basic granular features, making it a great starting point for those new to the concept.
iDensity is described as a granular playground, offering six streams of granular synthesis for intricate sound layering. With full AudioUnit support, it integrates well into a variety of iOS music production workflows.
Each of these apps brings something unique to the table, whether it’s the ease of use, polyphonic capabilities, or the combination of synthesis methods. They’re all worth checking out to find the perfect fit for your granular synthesis needs.
Affordable Granular Power
At its introductory (no-brainer) price of $9.99 USD, WaveCloud brings immense creative potential at a fraction of what desktop plugins cost. With its great sound, flexible workflow, and AUv3 format, it’s an easy recommendation for mobile production.
WaveCloud excels at soundscapes and experimental sounds, but it can find a place in any kind of music production. And with over 200 presets to start with, you should easily be able to find something inspiring for your tracks.
If you’re looking to add some granular magic to your iOS sessions, WaveCloud belongs on your device. Load it up in your favorite hosts and start mangling! Even at its full price ($14.99, later on), I would definitely recommend it.
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