Imitone converts your voice into instruments

Music composition software Imitone converts the notes you sing into MIDI signals in real-time that can then be converted into the sound of any instrument you have sampled.

Music composition software Imitone converts the notes you sing into MIDI signals in real-time, that can then be converted into the sound of any instrument you have sampled.

(Credit: Evan Balster)

Ever had a musical phrase buzzing around in your head, but lack the skills — or the time — to get it down before it disappears? A new piece of software designed by musician and game developer Evan Balster will make musical composition accessible to anyone.

Called Imitone, it allows you to sing or hum a tune into your computer's microphone. Then, in real-time, Imitone will convert that note into a MIDI signal, which can be played back instantly in a music program such as GarageBand — or, indeed, any music program that supports the MIDI file format (which is most of them).

"To hear your voice transformed into a violin or flute, you need only start Imitone, select that instrument in your music program, put on some headphones and start singing. It's that simple," Balster explained in his Kickstarter campaign. "No ear for music? Imitone has you covered. It's designed to help you sing in tune, providing constant feedback on the pitch of your voice. Additional tools like scale-snapping help it to correct your errors."

(Credit: Evan Balster)

The software can be used for composition, live performance, singing training, tuning your instrument, digitising your recordings and more. It's compatible with Windows XP or later, OS X 10.6 or later and Linux, and comes with a simple interface designed by Hohokum artist Richard Hogg.

The project, in its first day, attained US$13,749 of its US$20,000 funding goal, and stretch goals include automatic scale detection, percussion mode and a VST plug-in. You can reserve a copy of the software for a minimum pledge of just US$20 for the basic version, and the professional version — Imitone Prime — can be scooped up for just US$60.

It sounds like a fantastic program, brilliant for amateur enthusiasts and seasoned composers alike. To find out more, hear the program in action, and pledge your support, hit up the Imitone Kickstarter project page.

 

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