Other notable iOS apps on sale currently

I will keep updating this post with apps that I find in sale over the next week. Only apps that I actually use and find useful in teaching or in my own free time/exploration will go here though!

Launch Center Pro Launch Center Pro (Want to save some taps while getting stuff done on your iPhone?) $2.99 (Down from $4.99)

tweetbot3 iphoneTweetbot3 for iPhone $1.99 (60% off)

vesperVesper (Note Taking elegance and simplicity) $1.99 (40% off)

DayOne DayOne Journal/Diary (The best I’ve found yet! The only one I use now!) $2.99 (Down from $4.99)

Calendars 5 Calendars 5 from Readdle (The calendar app with natural language input – This is now my calendar app on my iPad and iPhone!) $2.99 (down from $6.99)

Inspire Pro Inspire Pro (Amazing painting app) FREE

Disclaimer – Help support my efforts in sharing with you apps and techniques that work in the classroom.
All app links here affiliate links. If you buy the app after clicking my link that simply means that I get a small percentage out of Apple’s profits while the developer gets their full percentage as normal. All of these apps are also apps that I purchased – none are apps that I received promo codes for.

iPad Music Apps on sale right now! (Updated Again!)

Updated once at 2:47PM EDST – then again at 6:43PM EDST

For those of you wanting to get your feet wet in creating music on your iPads, this is the time to make a few purchases! These apps are currently on sale! Get them now because all of these are amazing and these prices represent a significant drop in cost! These are al apps that cost more than most people spend unless they are actually interested in what is offered. The price point of these apps are, at the same time, considerably cheaper than such an app would cost on a regular computer. Considering that many of these emulate a piece of hardware the difference in price becomes an even greater bargain!

For those who want some great synth sounds:
Animoog Animoog – $4.99 (On sale from $29.99) – If you do not have this app you need to get it NOW!
Animoog Animoog for iPhone – $1.99 (On sale from $9.99)
Filtatron Filtaron $0.99 (On sale from $7.99)
iMini iMini $4.99 (On sale from $9.99)
iSEM Arturia iSEM $4.99 (On sale from $9.99)
Magellan Magellan $6.99 (On sale from $14)
Sunrizer iconSunrizer Synth – $5 (On sale from $10)
Sunrizer iconSunrizer XS – 
Chordion Chordion – $0.99 (On Sale from $3.99)

For those who are interested in DJ app’s
TraktorDJ Traktor DJ – $9.99 (On sale from $19.99)
TraktorDJ Traktor DJ for iPhone – $1.99 (On sale from $4.99)

DAW – Digital Audio Workstation sort of app
MeteorMultitrackRecorder Meteor MultiTrack Recorder- $9.99 (On sale from $19.99) – A great entry price point into the world of iPad DAW apps!
Synergy Synergy Studio $9.99 (On sale from $19.99)
Screen Shot 2013-11-28 at 11.38.29 AM BeatMaker2 $4.99 (On sale from $19.99)

For the Guitar players
TabToolkit TabToolkit $0.99 (On sale from $3.99)
Bias BIAS-Amps $14.99 (On sale from $19.99)
JamUpPro JamUp Pro XT $9.99 (On sale from $19.99)
AmpKit AmpKit+ $8.99 (On sale from $19.99)

For the drummer in all of us
ImpaktorImpaktor – $1 – (80% off!)
Screen Shot 2013-11-28 at 11.38.29 AM BeatMaker2 $4.99 (On sale from $19.99)

GlitchBreaks GlitchBreaks $2.99 (On sale from $4.99)
iMaschine iMaschine for iPhone $1.99 (On sale from $4.99)

For the Live8 Users
LiveRemoteLiveRemote $6.99 (On sale from $9.99)

For Music Teachers
Moosic Studio iconMoosic Studio -$20 off right now!

NOT iPad/iPhone APPS
Presonus has 50% off their Studio One DAW, Notion4 software app, and Progression 2 software for writing tabs/notation!
Notion has a great iPad version of their notation app that works hand in hand with the desktop version. At this price Notion is a ridiculous low price of $49.50! That is even a lower price than you can cross upgrade for from Sibelius of Finale!

A Great Calendar App for Teachers with iPads (plus it’s on sale right now!)

Calendars 5LogoAs a Band Director I am constantly dealing with my calendar app on my iPad, iPhone, and laptop! Thank goodness for those alerts!

I have bought many apps to deal with this mess and confusion of all the dates, times, meetings and performances. I have also bought many To-Do apps as well! I’ve liked some of the apps! Then Apple went ahead and “made me buy” an iPhone 4s! Who could resist – it had SIRI! Now I could talk to my phone and have it create reminders for me! That meant I all but stopped using any other app besides Reminders for my To-Do’s! Now don’t get me wrong here, I don’t think that app is currently a great looking app at all but it is so easy to whip out my phone and talk! iOS7 updates make Reminders look a bit better though! In the past half of a year though I have added WunderList to my constantly used apps! The benefit of being able to share lists with others is outstanding in WunderList plus that app is quick!

BUT tonight I want to talk about my new calendar app! Readdle has released a great looking and very functional updated app called Calendars 5! Currently it is on sale too for $4.99 – go get it now before the price goes up!

Why do I like this app? Let’s dig in….

  1. There are two apps here – one for the iPhone and another for the iPad. They are designed for that specific device! I love Fantastical but there is not an iPad version for that app. I like using the same app on both devices.
  2. The layout is simple, clean and easy to look at. It looks great on the iPhone and even better on the iPad – This app is made for the larger screen.
  3. The layout is easy to figure out!
  4. I can type in new events/meetings/etc. with normal everyday language and Calendars 5 makes sense of it!
  5. It integrates with Apples Reminders App! (Which means I can still use SIRI to dictate to but it will show up in this app!)
  6. It syncs and integrates with Google!
  7. I can set up great reminder alert sounds! (way better than Apples!)
  8. The recurring events capability is awesome! (Apple wont even let me do this on the iPad, beyond very basic repeats – I have to use my laptop!)
  9. There is a powerful, built in To Do/Taks section to the app! (Still gonna use WunderList though as well. I MUST BE ABLE to send my students things to-do using their shared lists!)
  10. The sync between my iPad and iPhone is seamless and just plain works.

Now I just have to figure out the best way to get my lesson plans from PlanBook, into my calendar then synced to the web so my principal can find it consistently. Then I will not have to print it and needlessly create extra work for myself!

Amazing Audio Tech

Have you seen Shazam? If you haven’t here’s the short version…. Have you been listening to a song and so wondered what it was? Load up Shazam, tap the tag button, let the app listen and within about 15 seconds Shazam tells you what the song is along with who the artist is. The part that amazes me is the Lyric Play tech built in. On many songs there is a Luric Play button when pressed will find lyrics for you. Then those lyrics start scrolling along in sync with the song while it is playing. All this happens I’m the palm of my hand! I can not believe the mic in my phone handles this. Even in a noisy car driving down the noisy road it works!

Obviously this works better with popular songs but the fact that the audio can be tagged liked this is astounding! Reminds me of the day I realized that my computer would actually remember the names of all the tracks on a cd! Of course I had to type all that info in back in those days!

Back to the original thought though, is anyone using this tech in your lesson plans?

iPad and Music Recording Apps (Audio and MIDI)

So I have been checking out apps that I can record audio and MIDI with on my iPad – here are some of my observations…

First of all there are several major features that are involved in looking at these DAW’s – 1)Recording of Audio – both from the obvious external source like a mic, guitar, wind instrument, etc… but also through the integration of AudioBus that allows recording of audio from other apps. 2)Recording of MIDI – both virtual MIDI as well as being able to access external MIDI equipment 3)Built-in synths, drum machines and sounds or loops.

With AudioBus integration the need for “everything” being built into one app starts to go away. NanoStudio, for instance, has a huge user base because it has allowed people to create some amazing recordings all in one app – go search SoundCloud. You don’t have to go purchase additional hardware synths, audio interfaces, MIDI interfaces or mics and you don’t need the additional purchase of synth apps or FX apps!

With AudioBus enabled apps though I can now use any app to record into another app. This allows the developers of Auria, for instance, to focus on creating an awesome app for recording audio while other developers focus their attention on creating really cool synth apps or drum machines for instance. I’m not so sure that the all in one is the HUGE benefit it was just a short few months ago (like November of 2012 – 3 months ago)

GarageBand Logo  GarageBand was the first obvious purchase –

  • PROS
  • So many very cool instruments built in
  • Capable of recording audio
  • Capable of using external MIDI keyboard to control internal sounds
  • Smart Instruments – go read their description and watch the video – very very cool, especially for elementary kids, middle school kids and those without the musical training needed to play the parts themselves!
  • Jam Sessions! Jam three friends (4 total people) over wi-fi or blue-tooth. How much fun would THIS be in a classroom setting! This is THE REAL GARAGEBAND FEELING!
  • Now has AudioBus integration! (This is huge for AudioBus for Apple to throw their support behind AudioBus!)
  • Has iPhone version and Desktop Versions
  • CONS
  • Will not play external MIDI keyboards!

MultiTrack Logo   MultiTrack DAW – my second purchase because of recommendations of friends on the internet! I LOVE people who share!

  • PROS
  • Great abilities when recording audio – 8 tracks of stereo upgradable to 24
  • per track compressor and EQ – also has delay and reverb built-in
  • Very simple to understand
  • AudioBus integration (one of the first DAW to do so!)
  • Will record up to 8 tracks of audio at once
  • CONS
  • No MIDI at all

MusicStudio Logo   MusicStudio – my third purchase – again because of friends on Twitter. There is a massive sea of apps out there – ask around to see what others are using and what is working well for them!

  • PROS
  • Records audio and MIDI both! (Yea!)
  • Records up to 24 tracks of audio at once!
  • AudioBus integration (just updated in March 2013?)
  • 127 track sequencer!
  • Instruments built-in
  • Has Effects built in – a bit limited though (read below)
  • Has iPhone version plus an LE version for free
  • CONS
  • Very disappointed to find out that there is no way to control the input level when recording audio! (At least I can’t find it yet!) As I am a Band Director this is a pretty vital feature!
  • Built-in Effects are somewhat limited. These are more of a global effects unit – you can have basically two effects groups – one for all the tracks or one that is on a separate bus or of course you can have tracks without effects at all. It is not a track by track basis by any means!

Meteor MultiTrack Logo    Meteor Multitrack Recorder – make sure you have at least 1 GB of free space available when using this app. The app itself takes only about 200mb but it requires more while running! You should also close all other apps to free up space. In fact, while using these audio related apps I have found this to be essential in having a successful session – no audio stuttering or apps quitting.

  • PROS
  • Records audio
  • Records MIDI
  • AudioBus integration (just updated in March 2013?)
  • 16 tracks of audio – upgradable to 24
  • CONS
  • Only records a stereo input?
  • Charges extra for the MIDI editor – Really? Come on people, if I am going to buy your app it is probably in part because of the ability to record MIDI! If I am recording MIDI then editing it is a basic function!

Auria Logo    Auria – This app is by far the one that seems the most professional – the one that seems the most like a professional recording studio full of effects, EQ’s and capabilities. This app has astounded people time and time again!

Have not purchased this one – I mean geesh – it’s $50! (There is a $25 version as well though if you want to get your feet wet here and try this out) Ouch! Don’t get me wrong… I am sure it is worth it but I am looking for something that I can use with my students on multiple iPads in the band room. $50 starts adding up really fast! Of course software for the desktop that does what this app is capable of would cost 3 to 5 times as much! Plus many of the plug-ins for Auria are 3 to 4 times cheaper for the iPad then they are for desktop versions!

  • PROS
  • From everything I can see this app is amazing in it’s ability to record audio
  • Records up to 24 tracks of audio at once! Plays back up to 48 tracks of audio at once!
  • Lots of plug-ins available as in-app-purchases (watch your kids! We don’t want any $2,500 bills here now people!)
  • CONS
  • Only does audio – no MIDI
  • I’ve read that this app is operated very much like a desktop app in that there are a lot of menus, clicking and such. Not enough use is made of the touch screen interface (just what I’ve read – not from personal use)

Cubasis Logo    Cubasis – This is from Steinberg. Have not purchased this one either for the same reason – it’s $50! Again… I’m sure it is worth it and the longer I look around for a cheaper option I think I might just have to go this route and pay the money! I am very intrigued by this company as this is now where many of the developers of Sibelius work now, after Avid went through their restructuring. I am holding high hopes for some amazing new technologies to come together in the form of Cubasis and a new notation program from the same company.

  • PROS
  • Records audio and MIDI
  • AudioBus integration
  • Unlimited audio and MIDI tracks!
  • Will record up to 24 tracks of audio at once!
  • Has a desktop version!
  • CONS
  • Price
  • No iPhone app

FL Studio Logo    FL Studio Mobile HD

  • PROS
  • Record up to 8 tracks of audio at once
  • MIDI recording
  • Compatible with the PC Desktop version (In fact, if you use the desktop version you should buy the iPad version as well!)
  • Has a Desktop Version and iPhone version
  • CONS
  • User interface issues looks much like they just doubled an iPod screen
  • Effects only on the Main bus (working on a fix – 3-15-2013)

NanoStudio Logo    Nano-Studio – This app has been around for a long time (in iPad years anyways) and has a huge user base built up!

  • PROS
  • Some great internal synths/sounds
  • Desktop versions
  • Great built-in effects
  • Has iPhone version
  • CONS
  • No audio recording (does have a sampler though)
  • No MIDI
  • No AudioBus integration
  • Only 6 Simultaneous instruments unless you pay more $ for and in app purchase to get to 16

StudioHD Logog    Studio.HD – Not very familiar with this as it seems to be focused on using loops. For those that are into that though this could be a great choice. I would suggest the video they have on their web-site – it is very well done and highlights some exciting thing this app can do with ease! This developer has quite a few apps out there which tells me that he is not going away any time soon.

  • PROS
  • 24 Tracks of audio
  • Lots of effects built in – 14 total – 4 per track? plus master effects as well
  • You can record automation of items like volume, pan, effects settings
  • Can record multiple takes per track
  • 900 loops plus more as in-app-purchases
  • Has an iPhone app based off the same concept Studio.M (4 tracks of audio up to 8 tracks with iap)- not sure how compatible they are though
  • CONS
  • Lots of in-app-purchases (Although these feel more like things that are actually add-ons vs some apps where these in-app-purchases should have been included in the first place!)
  • No AudioBus integration
  • No MIDI


BeatMaker2 Logo   BeatMaker2 – (Read comment from Greg below)

In looking at all these other apps I have also ran across these Multi-Track audio recording apps –

n-Track Studio MultiTrack Recorder

If you have thoughts please let me know! Which is your favorite and why? Which of these do you own? What have you found to be huge benefits and drawbacks of these apps! Are there features you would like me to add to the list so you can compare the apps to each other?

I will keep updating this and will tweet at anytime I do post an update to the list.

DrumJam has been released!

DrumJam, a whole new world of serious percussive fun, has been released! Plus it is on 50% sale for a little while so get it now. This is from the same people who brought us the ThumbJam App.

I’ve been seeing this app around YouTube and in blogs I read – It looks like a load of fun. It is currently downloading right now so I will write more later but I thought you all might be interested in a little distraction during these first few days of school for many of us.


By the way it is taking a while to download so either this is a big download or Apple is getting slammed on this particular app. It is a universal app.

Apps for Journaling, Keeping track of your memories…

I’ve never liked keeping a Diary, I really hated keeping a Journal while in college and I’ve never been good about keeping track of events in school that I might need notes on later. Now that I am older though I wish I would have actually kept that journal from my college days – the one with where I’d traveled to, places I ‘d visited and my thoughts on my life then. I think it might be a good idea to keep notes on interactions with students/parents throughout the school year. How is a good way to do this though? How do I keep my professional life separate from my personal life without driving myself crazy.

I want to list a few apps that are possible solutions to this… I also want to list some differences between all of these that I have found…

EveryDay.me  is a new iPhone app/website that has decided to throw it’s hat into a very crowded sea of possibilities. This app is meant to be just for you. It’s a personal app allowing you to write about your day, let’s you keep photos, videos, and even those little face’s saying you were happy or sad or whatever. All of this is only for you. It is all a private record of your life experiences. Right now users can link Facebook/Instagram and Twitter to their timelines. Posts to those services will be automatically pulled into your EverydayMe. You can also email a post to EverydayMe – use the same email account as your EverydayMe account and send an email to post@everyday.me which can be useful if your iPhone is not useable at the moment.

The web site Everydayme.com allows you to only view your entries and change a few settings. The web site is not meant to create entries.

The next release will allow Foursquare, Tumblr, FitBit and Nike+ integration. This daily record of your daily life is available online and of an iPhone app. Android and other mobile apps are supposedly in the works, as are printed “quarterly and annual reports” with highlights and statistics.

EverydayMe is meant to be only for you to keep track of what is going on in your life.

Path is another iPhone app (also Android) that allows you to create a timeline of your daily experiences that is shareable by up to 150 people. It is meant to be very personal still in that your timeline is not searchable online, in fact you can not even view your timeline on the web! The website allows you to adjust settings for your profile but that is it! Your default profile is set to Private.

Path allows you to check in to a location, post your thoughts of the day, post pictures or videos, share who you are with and while creating a Path entry you can also post to Facebook, Twitter, FourSquare and Tumblr.

Path allows you to interact with your other friends. It also has options to indicate when you go to bed and wake up.

Path draws my attention because I do like sharing my social life with other – just not as many people as I would if I was using FaceBook. Path is much easier to control the privacy from as well. Path is a beautiful app to use, browse through your past history and it is the app I compare all others to for pure aesthetic beauty! I really am anxious for Path Developers to create an iPad version as well as allowing people to view my timeline form a web browser, IF I give the link to them of course!

Of course Path is not someplace where you should be posting about the latest problem you had at school with Johnny! These next apps are possible choices for that sort of instance though…. These apps are personal journals/diarys.

First up is another iPhone app – Momento – a quick and easy way to write about what is going on in your life. It is quick to write a post, insert a photo to go along with that post, tag it with the people involved, attach a location and even tag events or create other custom tags that are later searchable. What drew me to this app the first time was that Momento also brings in many of the social feeds you may already be generating on a daily basis. So as I post to Twitter those posts are sucked into Momento. There are a ton of these social integrations in Momento – Here is a section from their website. If you use social media and want many of those feeds integrated into your diary then this app may work well for you! The only thing to be aware of though is that this app brings IN social media feeds but it does not SEND OUT. In other words, if you want to tweet then don’t try doing it from Momento or if you want to check into FourSquare then use the FourSquare app!

This is the last app I am including in this post. I thought I would be very remiss if I did not include one app that was made for the iPad though. I tend to write my experiences from my iPhone because it allows me to include pictures that are better quality that are also GPS embedded. But if you are like me then you want apps that are made for iPhone, iPad and even having a desktop/laptop version of the software is a huge bonus!

I have not used this app but am thinking about trying it out because of the fact that mentioned above!

Day One is a journaling app that allows you to write your post, include a picture along with the weather and even lookup your location using the FourSquare API. You can share your entries via email, Twitter, Messages and Flickr as well as creating a FourSquare checkin. I wish it would also tie into Tumblr, FaceBook and Google+

This is the app that reminds me the most of an old fashioned journal with a good twist of modern included. It looks like it would be a great looking app. This would also be the best spot I think to keep track of daily interactions between students, parents and other school related activities. I don’t think though that there is a good way to keep all your school stuff separate from your personal activities.

I am sure there are even better ways to keep track of your daily life vs your school teaching life. Leave me comments below please about which apps you are using to fill this slot.


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