Native’s production workstation has been updated – so, what’s new in Maschine 2.0?
The Native Instruments catalogue is stuffed with an embarrassment of riches these days. Undoubtedly, Maschine is one of its premium ranges, and one whose updates and developments are scrutinised in great detail.
The hybrid hardware/ software production workstation has established itself as the ‘hub’ of many producers’ working methods. Changing the workflow is potentially a matter of critical importance to them.
When Native recently updated to Maschine, there was speculation about what this may mean.
To clarify, here’s a mini guide to what’s new in Maschine 2.0…
Entirely rewritten code
According to sources, Native has rewritten the entire code for v2.0 of Maschine. This provides an indication of the scale of this update. It coincides with the launch of the new Maschine Studio, a development that is key part of this update.
The new Studio package provides hardware that, when used with v2.0, gives the user unprecedented visual feedback such that they seldom have to look at the computer screen. The machine workflow remains the same regardless, however.
For those using Maschine or Mikro hardware, the v2.0 still has much to offer. Here’s a summary.
A new mixer page makes giving your tracks a professional ‘sheen’ and balance a lot more straightforward. Along with level, pan, solo and mute, this has very flexible routing, and two aux sends per channel.
The arranger now has a timeline, and a playhead/ position marker that will follow the track. Colour coding makes your tracks easier to read, too.
Some of the new ‘toys’ added to Maschine 2.0 are a selection of entirely new drum synths. These replicate superb acoustic and synthetic drum sounds, with incredible editable parameters. The Kick, Snare, Tom, Hi-Hat and percussion synths are capable of sounding like classic analogue drums, or realistic acoustic drums, but can be tweaked in ways that sample-based drums cannot.
This is one of the most important tweaks to Maschine 2.0’s operation. Now, there are no limits to the number of groups within the software, nor plug-ins, nor scenes. The only limits are imposed by computer hardware. This, as I’m sure you’ll appreciate, is huge.
Tying nicely in with this removal of limitations is the rewritten audio engine, which now has support for multicore CPUs.
The sampler in Maschine has been overhauled, too. Now, you can sample from any source, and edit from hardware via the control knobs without looking at the computer screen (Machine and Studio). Parameters such as choke, legato and more can be added, and digital ‘voicings’ from the classic MPC-60 and SP-1200 are also available. In addition, zero crossing detection is now available.
These are the key new updates to Maschine 2.0, but there are other tweaks, too. For example, the UI is cleaner and more intuitive, and browsing has been updated with tags, too. Samples can be auditioned live, and Mac users can now enjoy Retina display support.
It all amounts to a huge update. All versions of Maschine (Machine, Mikro and Studio) now come complete with v2.0 software, or if purchased after October 1st 2013, will qualify for an upgrade to v2.0.
Joe is a contributor for the Dawsons Music blog. Specialising in product reviews and crafting content to help and inspire musicians of all musical backgrounds.