FL Studio Mobile Review
On its 4th version, FL Studio Mobile 4 has finally come into it’s own from under it’s desktop sibling. The linear-timeline based mobile-first DAW is not a stripped down version of FL Studio, but an companion app that stands on its own very well.
Whereas the x86-based FL Studio for Mac and PC can be very overwhelming by it’s multi-windowed, complex user interface – FL Studio Mobile is 100% scalable, with flat vector-friendly graphics opposed to the desktops bitmapped GUI. This makes for a very modern, if simplistic look and feel – similar to Ableton Live.
The GUI contains control aspects that slide out from the bottom (Drum Pads or Keyboard), right (selected instrument or effect) and left (Track Controls) edges of the screen. It’s a well arranged interface, with enough depth to satisfy the most demanding audio professional.
Instruments and Effects
Many of the desktop VSTs and effects from Image-Line’s collection is present. DirectWave – allows you to use presets saved from the desktops version; Slicer, is a stripped-down version of sample chopping Slicex; Transient Bass, along with GMS (Groove Machine) are two of the newer synths included. SuperSaw and Minisynth are the two exclusives to FL Mobile, with the legendary pattern based Drum Track – (which FL Studio is popular for) rounding out the Instruments.
The list of Effects included are more extensive, with more than 20 effects included. The options are broad, ranging from the essentials like reverb, delay, EQ and compressors – to more advanced and creative ones like Autoduck, Spacer and Auto-Pitch.
FL Studio Mobile’s standout features include a full automation for any parameters on a track’s timeline, instrument or effect. On iOS, you can use Audio Units and IAA-compatible apps within the DAW.
Perhaps the most useful, is the ability to import your own sounds and samples from outside the program. This allows for more advanced beatmakers, producers and musicians the ability to create a more custom sound of their own. Connect to external storage, or even import sounds uploaded to, Google Drive or OneDrive.
Lastly , the ability to purchase the complete Preset and Sample Libraries for each of the virtual instruments is possible – from the built-in store – giving access to many exclusive sounds from desktop counterparts of the built-in instruments.
FL Studio is a very powerful DAW, bringing advanced desktop level music production abilities to smartphones and tablets. There are few music making apps that can match the capabilities of this program, and those who are FL Studio users on desktop platforms looking for way to make music on the go will be doing themselves a disservice to overlook this app.