NAMM 2019: MOTU’s Digital Performer 10 DAW embraces a loop-based workflow with Ableton Live-style clip triggering

NAMM 2019: The perception of MOTU’s Digital Performer has always been that’s a ‘traditional’ DAW that operates in  the classic linear sequencing style, but with version 10, it’s taking a leaf out of Ableton Live’s book and adding a Clips window.

If you drag and drop audio and MIDI clips from the new Content Browser into Clips window cells, you can then trigger them in real-time. You can also trigger multi-track clip groups or an entire row of clips across all tracks, while the clip queue enables you to stack up clip sequences that you want to play next. This brings Digital Performer into line with the new generation of DAWs, and should make it far more appealing for live performance and on-the-fly production.

Stretch Audio is also new - the Stretch edit layer on audio tracks enables you to drag beats and their anchor points to adjust their feel. You can also adjust the tempo of entire tracks, while there’s an enhanced beat detection engine.

Elsewhere, there are now VCA faders, which can be used to control the levels of any number of tracks simultaneously while maintaining their relative volumes. There’s plenty of flexibility here: you can create as many VCA groups as you like and control VCAs with other VCAs to create multiple nested sub-groups.

In terms of content, DP10 ships with a 5GB library of multi-sampled instruments - this runs the gamut from acoustic instruments to synths - while the whole UI is now scalable. The Waveform Editor has been redesigned, too.

On the face of it, Digital Performer looks like a pretty revolutionary update, but we’ll find out more  when it’s released at some point over the next couple of months. It’ll be available for PC and Mac priced at $499, with upgrade options for existing users.

Find out more on the MOTU website.

Ben Rogerson
Deputy Editor

I’m the Deputy Editor of MusicRadar, having worked on the site since its launch in 2007. I previously spent eight years working on our sister magazine, Computer Music. I’ve been playing the piano, gigging in bands and failing to finish tracks at home for more than 30 years, 24 of which I’ve also spent writing about music and the ever-changing technology used to make it.