Sonic Foundry ACID Pro 3
Advanced music creation and sample looping application.
By Jon Deragon,
Tuesday, November 6, 2003; 3:00pm EST
Without a strong musical background, anyone interested in composing
their own music were basically left stuck being unable to create
music. That is, until Sonic Foundry produced ACID Pro 3. ACID Pro
enables the user to create professional quality music with the ease of
using a paint brush. No musical background? No problem! This
application lets you focus on the sound of the music rather than the
rules and complexities of music creation.
How does it work? Opening the program and creating a new music file
presents you a screen with blank "tracks", and a window giving access
to directories full of high quality "wave files" that are instrument
and sound samples referred to as "Loops" in ACID Pro. You browse your
collection of Loops as you would regular files in a standard directory
structure. The program includes hundreds of loyalty-free (meaning you
do not have to pay Sonic Foundry for royalties if your composition
generates money) Loops with the ability to add thousands more through
their Loop expansion packs, or by creating your own wave files easily
with a wave editor. ACID Pro features CD ripping so you can create
Loops directly off sounds from your own CDs as yet another way to
create your own loops.
Once you have browsed through the sounds, listened to them through the
auto preview feature, you can simply drag and drop them into the blank
tracks of your song. Each Loop has its own track - allowing you to
paint at what times you want the Loop to be played in your
composition. For example, bring a drum Loop into track 1, bongo drums
into track 2, a singing voice sample into track 3 and guitar into 4.
You can then selectively place each instruments execution time along a
timeline that forms professional quality music! But it definitely
doesn't stop there. Increase or decrease tempo, pitch, track volume,
and a host of equalization effects that you can apply. Amazingly there
is an unlimited number of tracks you can add, making the complexity of
your music limitless. While creating your masterpiece, you can preview
it on the fly, even make changes to the song as it plays! Even use its
full MIDI support to play and record music through a MIDI device.
Once you are happy with your production, or want to come back to
working on it later you can save it in its proprietary ACID Pro
format. Alternatively, you can export your music into almost any of
the most popular media formats including WAV, WMA, MP3, AIF, RM and
PCA. Allowing you to burn your music to CD, stream it through your web
site, take it with you in your MP3 player or do just about anything
you want with your new music creation.
The value of this $399.96US is exceptional. Not only do you get a full
blown recording studio in your home or office with the ACID Pro
application, but it also includes Sound Forge XP 5, a highly
comprehensive wave file editing tool. Edit any aspect of your wave
files but cutting, pasting, adding effects and changing just about any
aspect of the audio in your waves files you want! Finally, Vegas Audio
LE a full featured video / multi-channel audio mixer and editor.
Allowing you to create full blown videos on your desktop! All of these
applications have the theme of attractive and intuitively designed
interfaces, an abundance of features and an ease of use unheard of
until now in the music creation category of software. You are also
given access to a number of Internet based services such as Get Media
(provides free Loop and media downloads monthly) and a members area of
ACIDPlanet (community of ACID Pro users you can share your music
creations with and more).
Sonic Foundry has always had a winner with the ACID Pro product, and
Version 3 is no exception. So if you are interested in composing truly
top notch music with ease and simplicity - look no further than ACID
Pro 3. ACID Pro requires Windows 98SE / Me / 2000 with 300MHz
processor, 128MB recommended memory and approximately 60 megs of drive
space. Supports multi-processor systems and dual monitor display.
Available through the Sonic Foundry web site either as a download or
sent express delivery on CD with a manual, or at numerous resellers
About The Author
Jon Deragon is president and founder of Visca Consulting, a firm
specializing in web site design, development and usability for
businesses of all sizes. His many years in the technology industry has
enabled him to write quality, in-depth product reviews to assist
businesses make more informed technology purchases. He welcomes any
questions or comments you may have regarding his company's services,
this review or interest in having your company's products reviewed.