Wednesday, May 01, 2013

ChordLab 3.1 for Mac OS Released

ChordLab 3.1 adds a bunch of new features, fixes and improvements. Overall the application performs quite a bit snappier due to several code optimizations. Most dialog boxes now include help buttons leading directly to the online help system. Also graphically there are several improvements. Gum drops in the instrument view are now a shaded white and much easier to read and the inversion strip has been thickened. The Circle of Fifths display adds several enharmonic labels, all up to double flats and sharps.  Other features include MIDI capability, DSL synthesis and an overhaul of the chord analysis (chord finder) feature.

Altogether new in ChordLab 3.1 is the addition of DSL synthesis. Both the guitar and the piano instrument can now access over 240 GM instruments from the Sound panel of the preferences window.  This is extremely useful for arranging and other tasks. The original PCM samples are still available with an override also located in the sound panel.

ChordLab 3.1 adds base MIDI capabilities. Instrument selection takes place via the MIDI panel of the preferences window. Once an instrument is selected ChordLab highlights played notes in the instrument views. While this is useful in itself the main benefit is probably the capability to enter chords via MIDI for chord analysis.

Chord analysis in ChordLab (chord finder) is a feature that takes an input of 3 or 4 notes and tries to find a chord symbol for them. In ChordLab 3.1 one does no longer have to enter identical first and last notes for triads and instead just selects a '-' for one of the 4 notes. A reset button was also added. And finally it is now possible to enter chords via MIDI.

Version 3.1 is a fairly substantial upgrade and recommended to all registered users. The online documentation has been updated as well and is worth a quick look. ChordLab 3.1 is a free upgrade and now available from the Mac App Store.