Mark of the Unicorn
is now shipping Digital Performer 4.0, the latest version of the audio workstation and MIDI sequencer software for Mac OS X.
DP4 includes a new Freeze Tracks feature that lets you temporarily “print” audio tracks and virtual instrument tracks to disk in order to free up additional computer processing resources. You can choose and “freeze” an audio track or virtual instrument auxiliary track; the resulting frozen track plays back exactly like the original. You can freeze and unfreeze tracks as needed.
The update also takes advantage of Mac OS X’s modern architecture and built-in MIDI and audio services, delivering features such as CoreMIDI XML MIDI instrument patch lists, according to Jim Cooper of MOTU. Version 4.0 carries forward the patch lists from previous versions and publishes them for any application that supports Mac OS X’s MIDI device patch.
DP4 supports multiple CoreAudio, Mac OS X’s audio services, and CoreAudio drivers, which means you can operate multiple audio hardware products simultaneously with Digital Performer. For example, a MOTU 828 FireWire audio interface can be used together with a MOTU 2408mk3 PCI audio interface.
Version 4.0 of Digital Performer is also built to capitalize on Mac OS X’sMIDI services and Audio MIDI Setup utility. The latter offers universal MIDI system management. Device remapping from FreeMIDI to CoreMIDI means that when you open a project created in an earlier version of Digital Performer, you can remap your old FreeMIDI devices to the new devices in the Audio MIDI Setup configuration.
DP4 also boasts: support for Mac OS X’s MIDI Time Stamping; tweaked menu organization; interoperability with Propellerhead Reason 2.0, Rebirth, and other Rewire applications; an enhanced QuickScribe notation transcription engine; and a QuickScribe Arrangement palette that provides repeat barlines, endings, codas, del segno and other symbols that are used to create a consolidated score or lead sheet. A future free update of DP 4 will support Audio Units (AU) plug-ins and Pro Tools|HD and TDM, according to Cooper.
Upgrades from previous versions are US$149; for new users, DP4 costs $795. A competitive crossgrade is also available at the MOTU Web site. System requirements are Mac OS X 10.2 (“Jaguar”) or higher. You’ll need at least 128MB of RAM for MIDI sequencing and no less than 256MB for audio recording; 512MB or more is recommended.