If you’ve ever wanted to feel like a DJ, now’s your chance. Flare is one of the most lifelike and impressive record scratching apps for the iPhone and iPod touch that turns your screen into a virtual record player that you can scratch and play with just like the real thing. Flare sounds as real as the actual vinyl, and extremely accurate with both the sound and visualization of scratching and spinning a high torque turntable. You get a 5 preloaded beat loops produced by Luke Dubs, ready to cut over with 3 bundled battle records to get you started. You can also even upload your own mp3 files to scratch in Flare using a local WiFi server that Flare provides.
Once you start Flare you’ll see the silver metallic turntable. The graphics are sharp and futuristic, and you can peek through some of the moving parts to see some flaring lights underneath the wheels. The turntable has a futuristic looking arm which actually moves and rest on the record as it starts to play. There are 3 main buttons in Flare and these buttons change functionality depending on what state you’re in. There are 2 states, playing and not playing. In not-playing mode the left button just shows some credits on the record about the devs. The right button is a minus sign, which you can use to delete uploads you’ve made. More on this later. The third button on the right is shortcut hint that shows you what local IP address you should go to, to upload your own music and samples to scratch.
To start play mode, just tap the circle in the middle of the platter, and watch the tone arm slide to the beginning of the track. So now that you’re playing, the left button becomes a beat loop switcher. Just tap it to jump to one of 5 loops to scratch over. The right button becomes a play/stop button which you can tap to toggle the record beats to come to a stop or start spinning again. The third red button on the right is now a mute button that you can use while scratching. Keep in mind you can also change the volume by draggin your fingers over the lit up red meter bar on the right.
Given the dual mode functionality of the buttons, at first it was confusing for us to know which button does what and took a few minutes of random trial and error to come up with the solution. The app could benefit from a simple little tutorial or even a hint screenshot that explains what buttons to do what on first time load. Overall Flare is a kick ass and super fun iPhone app for having fun and playing around with a realistic record player on your iPhone. The best part is you can upload your own MP3 files to scratch with. So if you don’t have $800 laying around for a new set of Technics SL-1200 Direct-Drive turntables, grab yourself a copy of Flare for 10 bucks and you’re golden, and you can also forget about broken needles.
Flare features include:
– lifelike vinyl sound
– classic scratches: transformer, baby, tear, 1-click orbit
– mp3/aac/wav upload via Wi-Fi
– transformer button capable of 11ms clicks
– control tone record (experimental)
– coming soon: beatloop upload, hamster switch, and needle drops/hot cues
During our tests we came up with a few features that we hope to see in the upcoming versions:
– It would be great to be able to show off your creations with others. A record and save scratch sessions to MP3 files option would make this a full fledged winner.
– A way to upload your own background music, since it seems the uploaded file is currently only used for the scratching
– And finally Pitch control would be awesome to have if it makes its way to Flare
: Flare now has been updated to let you access your own personal iPod music files to use in the app. This is thanks to the Flare developers being early adopters of the new iOS feature that allows for iPod file access.
Here is a video demo of the Flare app on the iPhone
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