Apple Logic Pro 9 Review

Apple Logic Pro 9 is the new digital audio workstation and sequencing program at the heart of the Logic Studio 9 bundle.

There are many new additions to Apple’s flagship DAW software including guitar amplifier and FX modeling plug-ins and a new suite of time-based editing tools called Flex Time.

Outside of these much-hyped additions, Apple has made dozens of subtle enhancements and changes to the Logic environment with the end goal in mind of expediting workflow for all levels of Logic users.

Amp Designer and Pedalboard in Logic Pro 9

With the release of Logic Pro 9, Apple is clearly trying to attract guitar players who may already be using Native Instruments Guitar Rig or Waves GTR3. The collection of new features for guitar players includes two impressive plug-ins: Amp Designer and Pedalboard. Amp Designer allows users to mix and match amp heads, cabinets, EQs, reverbs and mics to create unlimited tonal possibilities.

Pedalboard is a pool of 30 famous stompboxes authentically reproduced. All of which can be easily routed and rearranged to the desire of the user and transcribed to a live performance environment via Apple MainStage 2.

New Features in Apple Logic Pro 9

Apple Logic Pro 9 is significantly faster than previous versions. CPU distribution has been drastically improved so that Logic Pro 9 users can now enjoy glitch-free audio in large sessions as well as faster offline processing. Apple has achieved this in part by assigning audio track playback and processing evenly across the different core processors residing in the Mac computer.

Besides behind-the-scenes processor optimization, Apple has introduced some new user features in Logic Pro 9 designed to speed up the audio production process. The new ‘Bounce in Place’ feature allows users to quickly bounce a region or track to a new audio file on a separate track. This feature includes options such as rendering plug-ins and automation as well as normalizing and adding effect tails to the rendered file.

‘Convert to Sampler Track’ is a very efficient and inspiring way to modify, re-sequence or mangle an audio loop or file. When enabled, this feature cuts up the selected audio region into transient slices and sets up these individual slices on a separate EXS24 sampler instrument track. The loop and individual slices can then be altered by the parameters of the EXS instrument (i.e. cutoff frequency and reverse).

Other Useful Additions to the Logic Pro 9 DAW

Apple has made dozens of seemingly minor changes in Logic Pro 9 that add up to vastly improved workflow for Logic users. For example, the pane around the current active window is now highlighted for easier identification. Apple has also relocated some of the items under the “Options” menu to more logical places. For example, all movie-related options are now found under the main “File” menu.

Apple has also adopted a few simple yet highly useful features which have been available on other major DAWs for years. For example, Logic users now have graphical representation for each channel EQ and the ability to make track notes for each channel and for the entire project.

Perhaps the only drawback of the new Logic DAW is lack of support for non-Intel Mac computers. This means that many Logic users on G5 PPC Macs or PowerBook G4s will have to upgrade computer hardware in order to enjoy the benefits of Logic Pro 9.

Apple Logic Pro 9 – A Worthwhile Upgrade

While the new Logic Pro appears to be aimed at attracting guitar players, Apple’s new DAW has a lot to offer all users of the Logic platform. From the new Flex Time editing tools to the overall performance boost, there are clearly many new improvements over Logic Pro 8. All users of Logic Pro currently on an Intel Mac could benefit by upgrading to LP9. And for those Logic fanatics on PPC Macs, perhaps this Logic Pro update will be the necessary incentive for upgrading to an Intel-powered machine.

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