The new version (2.5) of Spark,
audio processing application, is shipping and has Mac OS X support and improved editing features.
Spark offers multi-FX processing capabilities, audio editing and mastering via a one-window-approach. It transparently combines all aspects of audio editing from file database to audio editor and play list to browser view.
TC Works has examined the work flow of audio professionals and experts from around the world, and used this feedback to further improve Spark’s editing, processing and cursor handling to meet their demanding needs, according to John Epperson, TC Works’ product manager. The new cursor behavior ensures that the process of locating edit points and creating regions is faster and more precise, he added.
Improved file handling allows direct access to MP3 and QuickTime files, Epperson said. The new visual scrub tool enables tape-style acoustic navigation through a file, and the waveform overview and zoom handling have been further streamlined, he added.
Large projects will purportedly open up to 10 times faster in Spark 2.5. The Master View now includes instantly definable effect matrix resizing and a MONO Audition function for monitoring. Spark 2.5 adds support for multi-processor Macs.
What’s more, also Spark’s QuickTime features have been greatly extended — movies and files in QuickTime format can now be loaded directly into Spark’s main browser window, which adds to Spark’s flexibility for digital media production,” Epperson said.
The Mac OS X version supports Apple’s Core Audio for extremely low latencies and Apple’s Core MIDI. This means that modular synthesizer is playable directly from any connected MIDI device.
Spark 2.5 has a manufacturers suggested retail price of US$399. Spark XL 2.5 (the high-end version of SPARK with full TDM integration and audio restoration features) has a MSRP of $699. To celebrate their five-year anniversary, TC Works is offering the 2.5 update free to all registered users of Spark and Spark XL 2.0.
System requirements for Spark 2.5 are a Power Mac G3 or better; Mac OS 8.6-9.x (with the CarbonLib extensions installed) or Mac OS X; a 17-inch color monitor or better, at least 128MB RAM; OMS for MIDI sampler communication; and a SCSI card for fast sampler communication. You’ll also need an optional audio card for optimal sound performance. Adaptec Toast or Adaptec Jam software and a CD-ROM burner are necessary for CD burning.