Smule MadPad Brings Audio & Video Sampling to the iPhone & iPad – More Fun Than a Barrel of Monkeys

WARNING! Smule’s latest iPhone and iPad virtual musical instrument app is going to suck in and refuse to release every possible second of your productive time. Keep reading only if this does not frighten you. MadPad lets you sample sounds of anything and everything around you in sets of 12. Audio sampling is not new. MadPad, however, adds a video component to each of these audio samples. The video samples serve as both a cue to the sample sound as well as visual entertainment. Tapping on a grid of these audio-video clip samples lets you create beats and music in any combination. If you don’t want to create your own samples, Smule provides a bunch to get you started. A rotating set of 20 sample sets from the community is made available. You can contribute to this sample community too.

How much fun is this app? I have a couple of projects that are now slightly behind schedule because I spent way too much time playing with MadPad HD on my iPad 2.

The app was created by Stanford University student Nick Kruge. He was guided Smule co-founder and CTO Ge Wang. Dr. Wang is also an assistant professor for the Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics at Stanford University. MadPad is the first third party app published by Smule.

There are separate versions of MadPad for the iPhone (99 cents) and the iPad ($2.99).

MadPad – Remix Your Life (iPhone/iPod touch)

MadPad HD – Remix Your Life (iPad)

You can watch a creative use of MadPad HD in the video below. Note that as far as I am aware (based on my use of the app), you cannot actually play the entire song as performed below using a single 12 clip set. Several sets were used in the performance below (watch the hand waving as a signal for the clip set change).


Video courtesy of MysteryGuitarMan

Disclosure: Smule provided evaluation copies of both apps.