Scaler 2 is a “music theory workstation” plugin that could help you to write better songs

We considered the first version of Scaler, Plugin Boutique’s ‘music theory workstation’ plugin, to be a useful and educational composing assistant that can help you to take your songs to places that they might not otherwise go. Now, with the release of version 2, it has several more strings to its bow.

The Scaler story starts with key and scale detection, and both MIDI and audio are now supported. It can then use its music theory knowledge to suggest chords and help you write melodic phrases.

There are multiple new features here, starting with more than 200 Expressions - performances, phrases and rhythms that have been created by professional musicians. These are locked to the notes in your current scale and can be triggered from your MIDI keyboard

You now get more than 30 internal sounds - piano, synth, orchestral and guitar patches are all here - as well as more than 100 new song- and genre-based chord sets and more than 100 new artist chord sets. Plus, you can choose from more than 100 suggested modulation paths and presets that will help you to make effective key changes.

The ability to lock keys to your chords, meanwhile, will help non-pianists to play complex melodies on their MIDI keyboard, and there are humanise options to make Scaler’s output sound more realistic. There are new tools in the progression builder, too, making it easier to put together chord patterns.

Other enhancements include MIDI capture, which lets you perform inside the plugin and then export the results as MIDI, and a DAW sync feature that links chord patterns to your DAW’s playback so that you can audition new progressions in the context of your project.

Scaler 2 is available now for the introductory price of $49/£40, and existing Scaler owners can upgrade for $19/£19. These prices apply until 30 June, after which the plugin’s price will rise to $59/£50 and the upgrade will cost $29/£25.

Find out more and download a demo on the Plugin Boutique website. Scaler 2 runs on PC and Mac in VST/AU/AAX formats.

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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