IK Multimedia – The Mobile Musician -
iRig HD/IKlip2/iLine – Group Review. – 30/09/2013

iRig HD – Instrument Interface for IOS

tr_irig2.jpg Back in 2010 we reviewed the original iRig and now we take the opportunity to take a look at its latest upgraded HD version, which better utilises the processing power available within the current IOS devices and adds compatibility with the latest models.

The basic design of the unit is the same as the original unit, albeit in a slightly larger case. You plug your guitar or bass into a standard ¼” socket and then the signal is taken to your Smartphone or tablet for processing.

This is done via;

·         The Apple lightning connector for newer devices.

·          The original 30 pin connector for older devices.

·         A USB connector for your Mac.

All these cables are detachable from the main unit. This is a new approach as opposed to the headphone connector used previously on the original iRig which will indeed provide better quality.

The system can also take line level inputs from keyboards or mixers for further versatility.

The system is plug and play, just connect it to your Iphone, Ipod Touch or Ipad with the aforementioned cables, open the application and rock on! Also the USB connection is class compliant so no need for specific drivers there.

tr_irig4.jpg Only thing I would change would be the multi-pin connector that goes into the device itself as these can be prone to break easily, especially if inserted the wrong way round on a dark stage.

Moving on to software, Amplitube Free is provided with the purchase and can be easily downloaded from the Apple Store. In addition to this the iRig kit also provides 4 exclusive models plus Amplitube Metal for PC/MAC.

Once the app is launched users upgrading from the original iRig will be right at home, whilst new users will be equally at ease with the intuitive and visual interface. This provides amp, cabs, microphones and effects in a simple and effective layout for your touchscreen device.

I tested the iRig both with a 15 watt valve amp and a mixer/powered speaker setup and both returned pretty credible models of the amps and effects been modelled. Latency was very low and I was quite surprised at how quiet the system runs even on the valve amp at a decent volume and when using distortions and overdrives.

Things don’t end at the amp modelling however, as the app also provides other useful features such as a tuner, drum machine/bass line accompaniment and also the ability to play along with songs in your music library with tempo changer to slow down fast licks and a voice canceller to allow one to sing along to your preferred tracks or simply to allow concentration on the instrumental parts.

iKlip2  - Microphone Stand Adapter for Ipad

tr_iklip1.jpg Following on from the iRig, if you intend to use your ipad to run Amplitube, Chord Charts, Lyrics or other music related softeware a professional support will be needed.

We reviewed the original iKlip some time ago and we are happy to report that the new model shows a few improvements to the original, namely the use of a thumbscrew to allow an easy and quick setup.

This consists of a chunky claw with a big thumbscrew which would seem to be able to clamp onto most mike stands or even music or speaker stands.

Something else which could be improved in the next version however, is the “open” side of the holder which the packaging has a note warning one to be careful with.

Maybe some sort of on/off arm with a clip could be added to avoid accidents? I have an Ipad holder for a car headrest that has a similar mechanism.

Other than that a quality piece of equipment which has been upgraded to suit the new range of Ipads, plus a separate model for the Ipad Mini.

iLine – Mobile Music Cable Kit.

tr_iline1.jpg You have your new Smartphone or tablet, add an instrument interface and headphones and you are ready to rock. However if you need to connect your rig to the outside world, suddenly you realise, that you need certain cables and adapters.

IK intend to resolve this with the iLine Mobile Musician Cable Kit, handy collection of cables and adapters, to allow you to connect your device to various forms of amplification.

The cables themselves are of good quality with 24k gold plated connectors, heavy shielding and high purity copper conductors. A free IOS/Android app is included to recommend which cable is needed in particular situations.

Add to this a handy carry case and you have the perfect connection companion to your iRig and tablet or Smartphone.

The following cables are included

1: Mono Output Adapter

This cable converts mini-jack 3.5mm stereo output to standard 1/4" (6.35mm) mono signal. This can be used to connect your smartphone or tablet to a guitar amplifier.

2. Input  Output Extension

Adds length to your device output jack, including signal input and microphone capability.             

3. Stereo Aux

Very useful and versatile this is a  stereo output extender for sending the signal from your device to a 3.5mm stereo input (female) jack.

4. Headphone Splitter

This simply takes one headphone output from your device and converts it to two headphone sockets so you can share your music with another person.

5. RCA Output Adapter

This connects your Smartphone or tablet to a standard hifi or DJ Mixer.

6. Mono Output Splitter

The last cable is ideal for take a stereo output and taking it to separate channels on a mixer.

For further information please click on the link below

http://www.ikmultimedia.com/

By Ernest H Slade
www.gear-review.co.uk