Computer Music May 2021

Computer Music's goal is to help its readers create great music with a PC or Mac. Each month find easy-to-follow tutorials for all sorts of music software, unbiased reviews of the latest products and answers to technical questions. Our Zinio edition does not include the DVD but it DOES INCLUDE the full software, samples and tutorial files to download. Full details inside. Download does not include Producer Masterclass in-studio video. This digital edition is not printable.

United Kingdom
Future Publishing Ltd
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13 Issues

in this issue

1 min
how to use cm

We’ve got a new system for downloading files. Whenever you see this icon, you can grab the files on your PC or Mac by going to Tutorials featuring this icon make use of our own cm Plugins – find out all about them at This icon means there are extra files to help you follow a tutorial feature: project files, audio examples, etc. There’s extra video content wherever you see this icon.…

1 min

“Your finest feature was your final one, Scot!” There are a couple of big things to talk shop about this issue, the first of which is obvious – right there on the cover for you – and the second being very much the end of an era. We’ve finally got our Top 40 Greatest Synth Sounds Of All Time feature together, plus accompanying videos, sound files, software, you name it. Like everyone else, I could blame COVID for its delayed publication; in fact, f*ck it, let’s blame COVID. Bloody COVID. The resulting feature is very much a ‘why hasn’t anyone done this before?’ effort in terms of the fact that not only are we revealing which synth sounds are the most popular (ever) but also showing you how to make them…

7 min
it’s official: 80s best for synths

Somehow we knew that the eerie Yamaha CS-80 synth theme to Blade Runner would do well in our ‘official’ Top 40 Greatest Synth Sounds (of all time) poll that we ran on MusicRadar a few months’ back, but little did we predict how well, nor how many fellow synth sounds from the decade from which it was initially tweaked, would sit alongside it. But pretty much the entire top 10 – actually top 20 – of the chart was dominated by 80s synth sounds, alongside just a smattering of 70s timbres, with 90s and 21st century tones only scraping in the lower reaches of the chart. So does this mean the 80s was truly the best synth decade? That the best synths were made back then? That analogue is king?…

1 min
app watch

iPad whispers Well-placed sources are suggesting that the next iPad Pro will have a processor that’s on a par with the M1 chip that sits in the new Silicon Macs. As such, it looks like it’s going to be obscenely powerful, and add credence to the suggestion that Apple’s flagship tablet is a genuine laptop replacement. What will this power be used for? Well, there was a rumour that Logic Pro could be coming to the iPad, and what better time to announce it than alongside a new iPad Pro? Here’s hoping… Flux Mini Caelum Audio’s Flux Mini envelope shaper has a couple of big USPs: it’s easy to use and it’s free. Designed to add movement to your music, you can shape either amplitude or high-pass/low-pass filters by clicking and dragging on…

2 min
get with the programmers

cm How did you get into music and music production software? JG “I first got into making music from my love of happy hardcore. I was fascinated by how it was made and how they had sampled records. I started using Rave eJay to make music, it progressed from there and didn’t stop! Back in the early days, I had a subscription to Computer Music for a long time and it is responsible for a lot of my progression and knowledge.” cm What makes JMG Sound software stand out from the crowd? JG “My main focus with JMG is the balance between power and speed. I try to create plugins that are innovative and feature-rich but which are also fast to use and intuitive. A great example of this is Hyperspace, where you…

1 min
10 years back

What’s the best DAW? Ask ten people and you’ll get ten different answers (probably), so we rounded-up ten of them in 164, assessing their relative pros and cons and being oh-so-careful not to offend anyone by saying one was better than all the others. They’re all great, OK? “What’s the best DAW? Ask ten people and you’ll get ten different answers” We also asked if optical media was becoming obsolete – the fact that our kids don’t even know what a CD is probably answers that – and noted that the venerable Sinclair ZX81 computer was celebrating its 30th birthday. By our calculations, it’s now celebrating its 40th so, um, happy birthday again. Regular columnist Chris Randall (Audio Damage) meanwhile, was dreaming of what could be possible with the all-new, super-powerful iPad 2,…