Jamstix 4, internally known as Duke Drums Forever for its unexpectedly long development time, is finally getting closer to release. It is now in private Beta with selected Jamstix owners after which it will enter a public Beta phase available to all Jamstix owners eligible for a free upgrade. When that is completed, it will be officially released.
Here is a list of major, confirmed features in the initial release:
Re-engineered User Interface
While the fundamental workflow is not much different from the current release, Jamstix 4 has a completely new interface using vector graphics, offering better screen space utilization and a customizable color scheme. Notably different is the increased use of color to indicate object state and the scaled bar editor cells. While not in the initial release, we are working on scalable window sizing for future updates.
3D Virtual Kit
We know this is not a critical function affecting the grooves Jamstix 4 produces, but we've implemented a full 3D virtual kit with moving cymbals, kick pedal and drumsticks that you can pan, rotate and zoom. You can also adjust the shell color to fit your preferences. We do believe that it translates the groove data into a more visceral experience as you'd have with a real-life drummer and kit. Furthermore, it makes Jamstix a perfect tool for drum students as they can watch intricate patterns being played at any chosen tempo.
Simplified Installation & Updating
Jamstix 4 will bring the simplicity of the OSX JamstixManager to our Windows users, eliminating the need to download and install various Pak files. We've heard your pain, especially from the Studio version crowd.
New Song Builder
Drag-&-drop of parts to build your song plus you can now use your existing song parts for easy restructuring. You also have options to create linked parts, toggle drum and Jamcussion parts and prohibit kit changes in a simpler fashion.
Flexible input and output MIDI mapping
The input and output MIDI mapping has been completely overhauled, allowing you to specify how Jamstix interprets incoming MIDI data and how it formats outgoing MIDI data. These options are presented in the kit tool bar for fast access at any time.
Full Composition Mode
A new 'full' composition mode has been added, instructing Jamstix to instantly recompose entire parts whenever you make changes in the brain or bar editor.
Brain Display Modes
Since the brain display can be cluttered at times, we've added a NORMAL and EASY mode, which collapse less often used brain elements and expand preset lists.
The mixer has gained center frequency control in the EQ, greatly expanding the sound adjustments possible within Jamstix itself. There is now also a master volume slider as well as solo buttons for each channel.
Jamstix 4 supports a wide screen mode, which is perfect for songs in long bar time signatures, such as 9/4. It also gives you the option to dislay drum and Jamcussion 3D kits at the same time.
Parts can now be linked to each other so that any change in one of them automatically updates the other.
Part Song Power
Each part can now have its own song power level specified. This can eliminate the need to use song power automation in the host.
Support for Second Snare and Kick
You will be able to add a second snare and a second kick to Jamstix for more intricate performances or verse/chorus differentiation.
Several keyboard shortcuts are now available:
- SHIFT-A cycles through Jamcussion sound articulations
- SHIFT-B displays bar editor regardless of display mode
- SHIFT-Z cycles through brain display modes (groove, accent and fill)
- DELETE removes selected notes
- CTRL-A selects all notes
- CTRL-C copies all selected notes
- CTRL-X cuts all selected notes
- CTRL-V pastes all selected notes
Timing Offset & Hit Style Selection
Timing offset and hit style selection, which were previously buried in the bar editor cell menu, are now available in the main bar editor interface.
Song sheet and bar editor are improved in terms of selecting multiple items for editing.
Max Dynamic Threshold
Similar to the existing MIN DYN knob, Jamstix 4 allows you set a maximum dynamic threshold as well.
Improved cymbal washes and snare roll editing
Cymbal wash and snare roll editing is much improved in Jamstix 4 using the new cell selection functions. The audio engine will also automatically adjust the sample attack section for more realistic cymbal wash sounds.
Compatible with JS3 projects
You will be able to load Jamstix 3 song files from disk for easy transfer of existing projects to Jamstix 4.