Author Topic: Mac os X Tiger - A musicians Guide (article - jul 2005)  (Read 2963 times)

Offline chrisNova777

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Mac os X Tiger - A musicians Guide (article - jul 2005)
« on: February 03, 2015, 11:35:43 AM »

The latest version of Apple's Mac OS contains some excellent new features aimed at musicians and audio engineers. Is this one OS upgrade you won't mind performing on your studio computer?

Without wishing to be too nostalgic, it's hard to believe that Mac OS X has been with us in a final, released state for over four years — v10.0 was released on March 24th 2001 after many public and developer previews. 2001 also saw the release of Microsoft's Windows XP operating system, but while musicians and audio engineers were up and running pretty quickly on this operating system (an evolution of Windows ME and 2000), Mac OS X represented a more radical change for both users and developers of Mac audio and MIDI software, breaking away from 17 years of the 'classic' pre OS X Mac OS tradition.
Mac OS X Tiger: A Musician's Guide

However, while some Mac-based musicians clung to OS 9 for the first few years of OS X, the new Mac operating system, while not initially great from a MIDI and audio developer's standpoint, just got better and better. With the later releases of 10.1 (Puma) and, more significantly, 10.2 (Jaguar), the audio and MIDI feature of OS X matured and stabilised. The release of Pro Tools 6 probably helped, but Jaguar was really when Mac-based musicians began migrating to the new operating system in serious numbers. And the release of 10.3 (Panther) made everyone feel much more confident. Considering the functionality now in Mac OS 10.4 — codenamed Tiger — it's amazing how far Apple have come in just four years.

As this article hopefully demonstrates, Mac OS X is the most feature-rich operating system for music and audio purposes. It's not that other operating systems are less suitable or perform less well for music and audio purposes — it's just that Mac OS X includes more features specifically designed for professional audio and MIDI users, leaving developers free to use the OS-based features provided for them, rather than having to take time to create their own, application-specific ones. You might ask why this matters to end users, but it means that under Mac OS X, there is a more consistent approach to addressing matters concerning audio and MIDI hardware, along with plug-ins. Or rather there should be — unfortunately major applications like Cubase still don't support Audio Units under Mac OS X, meaning that if you use Cubase for your music production and Final Cut Pro for video, you need a set of VST plug-ins for Cubase and a set of Audio Units for Final Cut Pro, whether wrappers are involved or not.

While no MIDI or audio applications are becoming Tiger-dependant at this point, Tiger is still a must-have upgrade for musicians and audio engineers. The general OS X improvements are nice, but the improved 64-bit support is going to help samplers and other memory-intensive applications running on G5-based Macs, and you can expect to see your applications' interfaces redrawing a little quicker if you have a graphics card that can take advantage of Quartz 2D Extreme. More specifically, I expect a great many people are going to be taking advantage of Core MIDI Networking and Aggregate Devices in Core Audio. It's nice to see Apple designing their OS with the professional audio market in mind.