Last month, I got a chance to review IK Multimedia’s recently released iRig and AmpliTube combo for the iPhone. Not only did it sound great, the AmpliTube software looked awesome, providing access to numerous authentic effects boxes and amp combos that emulate their real-world counterparts. Now IK Multimedia is back with a version of AmpliTube for the iPad that is even more impressive.
Spacious is how I would use to describe my initial impression with Amplitube for the iPad. When considering just how perfect this version is, it’s useful to consider the iPhone alternative. Comparing with the above screen shot, the iPhone version display is really only as big as just one of the stomp boxes. Accessing the various options include hitting buttons and popup menus in an interface that while extremely functional, feels fairly cramped. With the iPad app, all of effects, amps, and control knobs are displayed on one screen, with the same attention to detail that I loved about the iPhone version.
Fortunately, nothing was lost in the app’s performance during translation to the iPad. All of the effects and amps sound just as great as the iPhone app, and this version offers a welcome fourth simultaneous effects pedal. The increased screen size does allow for a more logical layout with less button pushing to get to the sound you want. And accessing all of the knobs on the amp simultaneously is a welcome improvement when dialing in a great tone.
So how do the two stack up head to head? If you’re both an iPad and iPhone owner, its tough at this point to recommend the iPhone over the iPad version except for its extreme portability. While the iPhone app seems more suited for practicing music on the couch, I’d say that the iPad edition approaches stage readiness. If you’re a touring musician, busker with a battery powered amp, or want to lighten your load when heading to your friend’s house to jam, it’s easy to imagine using AmpliTube for the iPad live. If IK Multimedia were to develop a foot switch and a more rugged input/output interface that connects to the dock connector, I could see a wide adoption by musicians. The app just sounds that good.
Want a more in-depth review and hear how AmpliTube for the iPhone and iPad performs? Check out my previous review which includes an audio tour.
Wired: Same great sounding effects as the iPhone version. Logical layout that increases usability through the iPad’s large screen. Fourth effect pedal a welcome addition.
Tired: Should be a universal app so iPhone and iPad users wouldn’t have to buy twice.