Tracktion has evolved. They used to be all about the one product, their namesake Tracktion, a professional multi-track DAW forged many years ago by Julian Storer and distributed for many years by Mackie. Tracktion pioneered the dynamic single screen approach now favoured by Studio One and Sonar and offered a very fresh and amazingly priced alternative to the worlds of Cubase, Pro Tools and Logic. In 2013 Julian reacquired control from a disinterested Mackie and something very interesting happened over the Christmas holidays. With an awesome splurge of beautiful videos and content their media-heavy website gave birth to the “Tracktion Corporation” who are now about much more than the one thing.
The Tracktion DAW is still very much front and centre but is reduced in name to the single letter “T” with three versions. T4 DAW is completely free, you should go and get yourself a copy and only lacks some of the bells and whistles of the other versions; T5 DAW is the OEM version that comes with Behringer and Mackie gear which only lacks the really cool stuff; T6 DAW is the full-on professional version of what used to be called Tracktion. But what’s really new is the release of an unexpected virtual synth called Biotek.
Biotek is a “premium quality organic synthesizer” and is accompanied by a lot of images of forests and landscapes with some awesome natural and unnatural beauty in what is an effort to convey the nature of the synthesis engine and sample sound sources. The synth is based upon a newly developed synthesis engine they are calling “Acktion” created by none other than former Waldorf developer Wolfram Franke. Wolfram was responsible for such iconic synths as the PPG Wave, Largo and Attack, as well as developing software for the Access Virus TI. Sound design is led by industry veteran Taiho Yamada who worked on the Alesis Andromeda amongst many other things. So they are not messing around! It follows the same single-window approach as Tracktion, with the GUI designed by Seattle-based graphic designer, artist and DJ Kristina Childs, providing everything you need on a single page. It uses a range of macro controls to provide creative access to what’s going on behind the scenes. There’s a very interesting vector panel in the centre that allows for what looks like some pleasingly organic and creative fiddling.
The website also displays some forthcoming hardware called Copper Reference, a stereo i/o interface which has a pair of rather alarming tubes sticking out the top. All will be revealed at NAMM at the end of January.
Biotek is available now for USD 150 in AAX, AU, VST and Linux VST formats.
More information: www.tracktion.com