Count The Beats: First look at Amidio's Seline HD app for the iPad

The guys over at Amidio Inc (Touch DJ / have recently released their latest app for the iPad, Seline HD (US$5.99).

Seline HD is a musical instrument designed for performance and composition of music on the iPad. One of its key features is to make the creation of complex melodies easy, while accompanying those melodies with big sound scape type pads.

With its all new, ergonomically designed interface, the ioGrid, Seline HD makes playing music a breeze, literally, without the strain (RSI, anyone?).

Seline HD's intuitive CrystalClarity HD sound engine analyzes what you are playing in order to add subtle nuances to your strokes of genius. And the keys are designed to be suitable for players with all hand sizes, according to Amidio's press release.

So, how do you play? You lay your hands down on the keys, like you're about to play a piano. A fully adjustable 16-note scale is divided between your left and right hand, odd and even notes respectively. The idea is to place your index, middle, and ring finger over three individual columns, each finger being responsible for its own column. As a result, interesting playing and improvisational input possibilities occur, but more importantly, you get the added comfort of knowing you will never hit a wrong note. In your face, music teacher!

But the playing doesn't end there. Some well thought out features enhance your Seline HD skills even more. Aiming for the center of each key (in a column) will provide maximum volume, while aiming slightly off center and to the edges will provide less. In effect, more or less velocity.

Your thumb (or you can move and use your index finger) is left to control a center, two semi-tone, up or down pitch bend, while going left or right will add manual vibrato. There's also note shift, up or down buttons (to create great trill sounds), and, in addition to this, the joystick on each side calibrates the attack of the notes being played. To add a luscious background to your melodies, activate the Drone (chorded synth pads). Analyzing what you are playing, the Drone will add sound scape backgrounds to your melodies.

Using Amidio's CrystalClarity HD sound engine, Seline HD makes it easy for beginners to play as well as for seasoned musicians to find depth in the experience. By implementing dozens of algorithms to analyze the melody being played, Seline HD will subtly introduce character and expression to your input. For example, play an intensive solo where you land up holding the final note, Seline HD will detect this passage and add a subtle vibrato to that final note, as a finishing touch.

To top it all off, Seline HD is equipped with a full range of recording possibilities, including direct recording to .wav files. With 20 built-in factory voices (flutes, bowed strings, reeds, synth leads, and more), and nine drone voices, we're looking forward to spending some quality time with Seline HD.

After the break, check out Seline HD's tutorial video, Seline HD being used by The iPad Orchestra, and Jordan Rudess (of Dream Theater) playing a piano accompanied by Seline HD.