Vulse app brings gestural and touch effects to guitar | Cult of Mac

Vulse app brings gestural and touch effects to guitar


vulse for iPhone
Like an electronic whammy bar.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

Vulse is a neat app for musicians. More specifically, it’s for guitarists. The app has been around for a while, but got a big old update this week that makes it worth a new look. The idea of the app is that you stick your iPhone onto your guitar, just below where you strum the strings, and then use a combination of wild flailing and screen-stroking to apply crazy effects on the fly.

Vulse effects for iPhone

Vulse uses the iPhone’s accelerometers and multitouch screen to control its various effects. The effects part of the app itself will be familiar too anyone who has used an iOS amp-simulation app before. The effects are laid out like little stomp boxes, and you drag them into the virtual circuit to put them between the guitar’s input, and the app’s output.

The big difference is the control method. You map any of the effects’ parameters to either the touch screen, or to the position of the guitar. For this to work, the iPhone needs to be stuck to the front of the guitar somehow. The recommendation is to use a case with a micro-suction pad, but you could always just use gaffer tape to test it out.

Wild effects

There are three effects slots, one for each control method (vertical and horizontal screen swipes, plus tilt. You can drop an effect into any of these slots.

Thus set up, you can reach a finger down to the screen as you play, much like you’d grab a whammy bar to alter the pitch of a note or chord. Or you can go crazy, and map effects to the angle of your guitar, as determined by the iPhone’s accelerometers and gyroscopes. Check it out:

Pretty rad, right?

You’ll need a way to hook your guitar up to your iPhone, but that’s easy. The app is free, and extra effects can be purchased. You an also try any effect as often as you like.

If you have a guitar and an audio interface for it, you should just grab this app right now. It’s a lot of fun, and offers a ton of creative opportunities.

Price: Free with in-app purchases

Download: Vulse from the App Store (iOS)


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