Reason Compact 2.0 for iOS adds a drum machine and bass synth, making it the app it always should have been

When Propellerhead launched the Reason Compact iOS app last year, the sense of disappointment was palpable. 

It wasn’t that it sounded bad - it was based on the excellent Europa synth, after all - more that… well, it just wasn’t really Reason. What people wanted was a proper mobile studio, and the good news is that, with Reason Compact 2.0, we’ve now got something that more closely resembles that.

This brings two more instruments into the mix - the Rytmik drum machine and Monotone bass synthesizer - meaning that it’s now possible to make three-track productions in Reason Compact. It’s not the finished article, but we’re certainly getting there.

Rytmik comes with 16 free drum kits, while your basslines and melodies can be played on a smart keyboard that locks to key. You can edit your performances in a MIDI note grid, while the Chords tool enables you to play synth chords with a single key. There’s mixing, too, plus distortion, delay and reverb effects.

Once you’ve created something that you’re happy with, you can develop it further in Reason 10 on your PC/Mac. What’s more, Reason Compact users can download Reason Lite, a free version of the DAW, for free. All desktop versions of Reason have now been updated to version 10.4, which includes Rytmik and Monotone to enable cross-compatibility with Reason Compact 2.0.

You can download Reason Compact 2.0 for free on the Apple App Store, with more sounds and controls for the instruments being offered as in-app purchases.

Ben Rogerson

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. 

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