Apple Logic Pro is one of the biggest updates to Apple's audio software yet and with it comes a host of features that make this a DAW to take on the competition. From full non-linear recording to a sampler that sets the bar high, this is a superb software offering with the 10.5 update coming free to those that own the already impressive audio editor.
Apple Logic Pro X offers pro-level audio editing at a decent price which includes enough power for multitrack recording, film scoring, sound design, post and more. The addition of live performance powers makes this a really compelling offering that leads the way for DAW suites. It easily makes our list of the best audio editing software (opens in new tab), and it also features among the best beat making software (opens in new tab) too.
Apple Logic Pro X: Features
Apple Logic Pro is a powerful audio editor and, as such, comes with a whole host of features. The newer features include Live Loops, which places columns of "cells" on the screen for composing and arranging music, in real time. This allows for live editing where samples, loops or recorded audio can be dragged into the grid to trigger the cells in different combinations in a non-linear fashion. These can then be arranged into "scenes" which can be queued up as needed.
This represents a very freeing, creative and fast way to work with audio in the moment, live. Crucially, you can still transition to the existing Tracks view afterwards with all the newly composed regions remaining as you left them.
Failing all that, you can use 17 pre-loaded scenes, aka templates, into which you can drop what you need to get creating quickly.
The new Remix FX plugin in a powerful feature that comes with the 10.5 update. Yes, it's the same one that first appeared in GarageBand and is still lots of fun.
This is designed for electronic music producers and allows for transitions, gates, stutter edits, virtual record scratching and more via a mouse or Logic Remote on iPad and iPhone. This can be used on individual tracks or strapped across the mix bus and gives lag-free flare-style effects following the cursor.
The Step Sequencer is another huge feature which allows you to gray out the current Step Editor if you activate it. This gives you an FL Studio style interface for the drums with 15 rhythm and melody options that makes it perfect for building beats. Combined with the new Drum Synth, you've got lots of beat options.
Sampler is a long-overdue update which gives a workstation type sample set with the likes of pianos, guitars and more on offer while remaining EXS24 library backwards compatible.
The Quick Sampler is also a top option, allowing you to drop in single samples to turn them into playable instruments.
Apple Logic Pro: Performance
This is undoubtedly a professional tool meaning it's complex and intricate in its offerings. Despite that, it does remain intuitive to use and the fact it can now be used live is a testament to that.
The cell layout in live sequencing makes for a really straightforward way to work that not only works on Mac machines but also on iPhone and iPad.
The new Drum Synth works very well to generate fully synthesized percussive sounds in four types: kicks, snares and claps, percussion and hats and cymbals. This breaks down into subcategories which ultimately means as much complexity or simplicity to a beat as is needed.
The new Sampler is easy to use no matter how complex your multisampled instruments can get. Auto drag and drop sample mapping is helpful here, as is Flex time implementation, the four LFOs and five envelopes, which all makes for a pro grade sampler that raises the bar.
Quick Sampler is a great, leaner, way to get working with samples fast. This simplifies down to two LFOs, three envelopes and one filter. That makes for near effortless mapping when working on a single sample.
The Auto Sampler also gets a mention as it works so well. This, as the name suggests, generates mapped Sampler patches from both software and hardware MIDI instruments with auto conversion of samples dragged into the Track list.
Should you buy Apple Logic Pro X?
Apple Logic Pro is a super powerful and cutting edge DAW which works both on Mac as well as on iPhone and iPad with the Logic Remote. The superb array of new features make this a powerful tool and uniquely appealing over the competition. If you're an Apple user, it's on a par with Adobe Audition (opens in new tab).
This is a trend following update rather than setting new limits, but it does so in a way that works well and, in typical Apple fashion, makes the best all-in-one alternative to what's already out there.