If you keep track of the Apple world, you'll know their online store went down worldwide some hours ago. This generally means one thing... a new release of sorts. Apple quietly introduces smaller products, though generates hype by keeping their store down for an hour or two, instead of the conferences they hold for major announcements. This most recent introduction was a long awaited product, the second version of Apple's Logic Studio, and comes with a bunch of new features, as MacWorld happily reports.
There's a bunch of new features in this iteration (over 200, apparently), all of which will appeal to musicians. According to MacWorld, "the suite includes Amp Designer and Pedalboard plug-ins, features similar to the guitar tracks and stompbox effects introduced with iLife '09's GarageBand. Amp Designer includes 25 amplifiers and 25 matched cabinets that can be captured with one of three virtual microphones. You can mix these amps and cabinets—for example, to play a Mesa Boogie-like amplifier through a Marshall cabinet. Each amp includes 5 EQ and 10 reverb presets."
If you're a proficient live musician, you'll have a couple new tools at your disposal; MainStage 2 comes with two new plug-ins. The first of which is for triggering pre-recorded backing tracks, which can be trigged either by using a MIDI controller, or a USB one. The second is called Loopback, and it allows you to record something whilst on stage, and then tack on additional audio layers with each 'pass of the virtual tape'. It finishes off by bringing in a wealth of handy new functionality to make studio recording that much easier. Drum Replacer will replace a drum track with a triggered sample, apparently, and Flex Time will allow you to move audio snippets forwards and backwards in time, as well as a few other things.
The new version of Logic Studio costs $499, though to upgrade it'll only cost $199. If you own Logic Express, you can upgrade for $299.