W.A. Production has launched LOOP Engine which they say readily represents the next generation of cutting-edge, multi-voice tools as an Infinite Loop Generator. They tell us that it draws upon the legacy of its CHORDS and Chords PRO plug-in predecessors (providing chord and pro-grade chord progressions for instant inspiration) to take arps, melodies, and riffs to the next level by generating loops outside the norm, with intuitive controls to shape the algorithms. Here's more details direct from the company...
As a revolutionary plug-in purposefully unlocking a new standard of MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface) processing generation by duly drawing upon the legacy of its CHORDS and Chords PRO plug-in predecessors (providing chord and pro-grade chord progressions for instant inspiration), LOOP Engine enables users to push the boundaries even further. Facilitating saying goodbye to the limitations of static chord shapes and divisible segments, it takes arps, melodies, and riffs to the next level by generating MIDI loops outside the norm, with intuitive controls to shape the algorithms. Always inspiring and innovative, it is designed to set tracks alight and help kick-start creative musical ideas.
While W.A. Production originally designed LOOP Engine for EDM (Electronic Dance Music) production, this loop workstation works equally effectively in other genres of music, manufacturing note progressions with flair and ease, based on chord shapes and rules. Indeed, its feature set is stacked with new concepts to create a whole way of working that massively expands the scope of what MIDI processing generation can be. But looks, of course, can be deceiving. Despite looking similar to its CHORDS and Chords PRO plug-in predecessors, LOOP Engine is actually a far more fully-featured affair. Advanced routing options for multi-track playback make integration into a DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) project perfectly straightforward, so users can easily work with their favourite virtual synths and instruments, using LOOP Engine to output up to eight independent MIDI voices -- 1 through to 8 -- and send them to an accompanying secondary plug-in, LOOP Engine LISTENER, loaded onto instrument tracks in a DAW. These two tools allow for designing complex multi-track loops that span multiple DAW tracks... or simply use the presets as a jumping-off point for some legendary-sounding loops!
LOOP Engine LISTENER notwithstanding as the special sauce behind LOOP Engine (allowing users to choose which voices supply which tracks, and easily swap them with just a couple of clicks), users can choose to play with a wealth of new functions, including a piano roll, additional chords, voicing rules, chord range, and an ability to add tension notes, as well as choosing open, mixed, or closed chord positions.
Various views make navigating that fabulous functionality a more manageable experience for all. As such, Loop View is the main window where users can set the overall root KEY of the chord sequence, sequence SPEED, LENGTH, MAJOR and MINOR, and OCTAVE options; access a CHORDS menu for selecting pre-made chord progressions; and also create a new chord sequence by clicking the centre-positioned CREATE button. There, the creation process begins from the last chord selected around the circle via a series of 'dots' while the algorithm bases its decisions on the chords that are already in place -- up to and including the one selected. Chords can be added or removed with the + and - buttons between each chord -- as many as eight and as few as two, while each chord segment consists of up to four notes that can be turned on and off by clicking.
Chord View is activated by clicking the innermost ring of 'dots' to access each individual chord; clicking on each one shows the chord shape on the piano roll positioned at the bottom of LOOP Engine. Each chord has dedicated options for setting OCTAVE, INVERSION, and VELOCITY, but new to LOOP Engine is its RANGE control -- sets up how spread apart the notes are. Thereafter, there are two modes for choosing chord types: 'dots' in the centre of SIMPLE mode represent different complexities and tonal functions of chord shapes -- 'dots' towards the bottom are generally simpler chords and those higher up are more complex and sound jazzier, while the three different lines of 'dots' represent S (subdominant), T (tonic), and D (dominant) chords; ADVANCED mode, meanwhile, includes self-explanatory additional options for chord TYPE and TENSION notes, adding even more interesting shapes to the user's palette.
Try toggling between CHORDS to NOTES in Voice View, whereby the chords are split into note partitions; click to choose any of the four chord notes for each partition -- segment settings can be copied and pasted from one chord to another; alternatively, turning on REPEAT mode means any changes made to one chord's segments will be automatically copied to all. As if that was not enough to be getting on with here, it is also possible to set the number of partitions per chord and overall octave with dedicated (PARTITION and OCTAVE) controls. Creativity abounds still further with POLY mode, another feature new to LOOP Engine; instead of constructing sequences for each chord, users can create a pattern that will be repeated indefinitely -- beyond the boundaries of chord segments and loop iterations. It is possible to select note presets or -- just like when working with chords -- save custom-created ones. And all such controls can be adjusted for up to eight independent voices, which is exactly where the secondary LOOP Engine LISTENER plug-in comes into play -- producing instant interactive EDM becomes a breeze, but anyone wishing to export MIDI data from LOOP Engine to take things further should simply drag from the Loop View or Voice View to then edit it in their DAW in the normal way.
Ultimately, users of CHORDS and Chords PRO will already be familiar with some of the creative concepts driving LOOP Engine further forward to its final destination as a super-flexible creation station for arps, chords, loops, melodies, and more, spread across multiple voices and outputs. On the face of it, then, LOOP Engine has surely cemented its position as W.A. Production's flagship MIDI processing plug-in, one which is well worthy of readily representing the next generation of cutting-edge, multi- voice tools as an Infinite Loop Generator.
Pricing and Availability:
LOOP Engine is available to purchase at a 70%-discounted introductory promo price until March 31, 2023 -- rising thereafter to its regular price of $99.00 USD -- as a 64-bit AU-, VST-, and VST3-compatible plug-in for macOS (10.15 or later) and 32- or 64-bit VST-, and VST3-compatible plug-in for Windows (8 or later), as well as an AAX-compatible plug-in for Pro Tools (11 or higher).
14-day, fully-functional trial versions of all W.A. Production plug-ins -- including LOOP Engine -- are available.
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