Ballroom Dance > iphone apps for tempo changes - useful tool for dancers!

Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by 19DancerBabyLin, Jun 10, 2010.

  1. Hi all,

    Don't know if I'm the only dinosaur here who doesn't know that things like that exists, but I've been wanting to do quick and easy tempo changes on my mp3 player for ages. Came across 2 apps for the iphone/ipad, and thought I'd share them with everyone.

    1. iLift -
    2. Amazing Slow Downer Lite -

    I took a quick look at both of them and decided to give a very brief and biased review of them. And since I am El Cheapo, I'm only going to compare the free lite versions of the apps... lol

    The similarities:
    1. Both have pitch lock, if you just want to change tempo.
    2. Both have key adjustments too if you wanna do that.
    3. Both changes tempo by sliding a percentage bar. (Alas, I'm still waiting for something else that has song ID tags so I can just say "play me this song at 32mpm"!)
    4. Both are equally annoying to upload songs to. They don't access your ipod library. Instead you have to upload songs one by one through wi-fi. The process is painless enough though, it's more of just a nuisance.
    5. Both can loop sections of a song, play, rewind, or search a song by dragging the knob thingy to the time desired.
    6. I believe you can add notes to songs for both of them

    The differences:
    1. iLift lets you upload 3 songs free, and use the 3 songs fully. If you want different songs, you have to delete a current one. ASDL lets you upload however many you want I think, but the program limits it to playing the first 1/4 of each song.
    (The iLift Pro is $9.99, available through in app purchase. The ASD is available for $14.99. Both will let you upload unlimited number of songs and whatever else, if any, they let you do.)
    2. iLift changes tempo from 50 to 150%. ASDL changes tempo from 33% to 200%.
    3. iLift has a sexier interface.
    4. ASDL doesn't have a fast forward button.
    5. ASDL seems to allow greater control... Besides the tempo, iLite has a key change (only in semitones) and a "fine tune" (apparently for out of tune recordings), and ability to change song ID tags. ASDL does mix, pitch (looks like not just semitones), stereo, quality, and other random stuff.

    I know ADSL allows you to sort songs by title, artist, etc. Not sure about iLift.

    For my purposes:
    I went with iLift. All I need it to do is change tempo on some songs so the kids on my dance team can catch up if the music is too fast for their abilities... who needs things like adjustable EQ anyway? And I take 3 full songs over many quarter-songs. I have a Samba, Jive, and Cha uploaded now... maybe I'll reconsider my choice when we start Viennese... or download both. If you are a musician/audiophile wanting to do other funky stuff though, ASDL may be your better bet.

    Have fun playing, I certainly did! :D And if anyone knows anything better than these apps, please let me know!
  2. Nazar

    Nazar Member

    Thank You!
    I was thinking about looking for tempo change apps just yesterday. not happy though with the idea of uploading through wi-fi. Maybe somebody knows about apps that access the library directly?
  3. sambanada

    sambanada Active Member

    Thank you. This is a good teaching tool.
  4. Chris Stratton

    Chris Stratton New Member

    Make a file with four runthroughs of the song in it ;-)
  5. :uplaugh: yes! i was just thinking about that! if i have to upload them individually anyway, might as well make an extended file like you said and be able to play the entire song. will mess around with that tonight.
  6. Reporting back on the file with four runthroughs of the song... lol it didn't work. The app was too smart. I think the ASD lite version must have a 2min max time limit on it... Wouldn't increase anymore even when I tried a file with six runthroughs of the song...

    Anyway, I'm starting to incline a bit more towards ASD actually... looks like you can create folders within the app, so there's some organization if you do end up wanting to upload a ton of songs. Doesn't look like iLite Pro is capable of that.

    Conclusion: Free version of iLite is better, but paid version of ASD is better!
  7. Meagan

    Meagan Active Member

    Sounds cool...if I ever get an iphone can you just set this up for me :tongue: you can be like the resident expert!!
    I'm still trying to figure out how to really work my ipod and that only has a couple of buttons :rolleyes:
  8. Lol for you Meagan, absolutely!! I've never owned an ipod actually... I only have the iphone because my brother doesn't want it anymore. I like my current phone and don't want to pay for data, so I'm just using the iphone as a fancy PDA with wi-fi :D
  9. White Chacha

    White Chacha Active Member

    It's cool to hear there's finally a tempo-changing solution for a handheld device.

    I went for an Android phone so hoping there's an app appearing there sometime soon.
  10. Chris Stratton

    Chris Stratton New Member

    With luck soundstretch should compile to produce a command line executable, the question would be if its fast enough for real time, and then putting a java front end on it.
  11. dancingmomof2

    dancingmomof2 New Member

    Pitch Control for iphone - is there an app for that?

    Hey everyone,

    When I am in class with my coach inevitably he messes with the pitch control to slow songs down when I am learning and then speed to competition tempo for training. However, I have been unable to find a pitch control app for my iphone! I can't believe one does not exist. When I am practicing on my own I use my iphone for music.

    Does anyone know of a killer app that can help me out?
  12. jennyisdancing

    jennyisdancing Active Member

    See this thread here for listings of several apps.
  13. dancingmomof2

    dancingmomof2 New Member

    Thanks! I will check it out!
  14. autotroph

    autotroph New Member

    Awesome tip BabyLyn, I was teetering on the fence, thinking about whether I should shell out money for the iPhone 4 but now that you mention this app, I am more tempted to get it then ever before
  15. Telematt

    Telematt New Member

    It's not a mobile app, but there is a free program called Audacity (you can find it if you Google "Audacity") that runs on Windows, Mac, and Linux, which lets you slow down music, as well as a bunch of other stuff I haven't tried. It runs on your computer; you don't have to upload any songs anywhere, and there's no limit to how many songs you can modify.

    I've taken a couple songs from each style and used Audacity to create several versions of each song at different tempos - in advance. Add the BPM count to the song name to identify which is which. Then I load those all onto my iPhone or iPod, and play the song for the appropriate tempo while I'm practicing.
  16. Josh

    Josh Active Member

    I just bought iLift ($9.99) and from what I can tell so far it will be well worth the money.

    - Easy to import a song from the library on the iPod/iPhone
    - Runs in background so you can do other things on the phone while the song is playing
    - Simple and easy to use

    - Pitch and tempo control could be a little more fine-tuned. It only adjusts in whole percents, and the ability to go at least to halves of a percent would be nice
    - No ability to reorder songs in song list

    Overall I would recommend! When I use it in the "real world" this coming week, will let you know if anything changes my mind.
  17. +1. Audacity is a really great piece of software, and is relatively easy to learn how to use. It has a lot of great functionality, and is, in my opinion, much easier to use than expensive professional audio applications like Apple's Soundtrack Pro.

    There is one caveat, though. If you want to export audio files that you have modified in Audacity to MP3, you need to download and install the LAME MP3 encoder module after you install Audacity. Since I'm too new to be able to post links, just google "export audacity as mp3". Their SourceForge help page should be the first result, with download links to the appropriate add-on for your particular operating system.

    3 cheers for (FREE) open source software! :grin:
  18. Josh

    Josh Active Member

    Also +1 for audacity, although that does nothing for changing pitch and tempo in real time on a mobile device-- also with audacity, you can import AAC files (with the 1.3 branch anyway) so it's pretty decent with the file formats it supports. I've been using it for years and it does a great job.
  19. White Chacha

    White Chacha Active Member

    I used to sweat this but really, I don't think any of the competition DJs is that "detailed" about the tempo of what they play. I routinely hear music (particularly latin) played outside the legal tempo ranges (usually too slow) in the relevant rulebooks.

    But on topic, I recently had pointed out to me a DJ program that runs on the iPad. It has tempo and pitch adjustments, and playlist management. It's called "djay" by Algoriddim. Google it for their website. It isn't free but I think it's pretty reasonably priced for a program with as much polish and feature set as it has. It's a bit rich in UI for my tasted but still useful.

  20. Larinda McRaven

    Larinda McRaven Site Moderator Staff Member

    I think it is a bit different for you WC, in that you are in the collegiate circuit. Often the DJs you are exposed to, with the exception of David, are not professionals.

    Try playing songs out of tempo at an NDCA comp and you will have every pro on your back complaining... you can't survive very long like that.

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