[beta > last change @ 29 december 2004; information is based on Release Candidate 5]

[Tiny disclaimer: this document is as much a release candidate as MadTracker currently is. If Yannick would decide to completely transform MadTracker into an advanced tool to host sewing machines in via Bluetooth, then this document will also change. Ergo: nothing here is granted, and might change over time.]

Feedback? Contact inge@madtracker.org

VST. ReWire. IRC. TrackEQ. We can imagine that it's a bit overwhelming at first. We were confused too when we laid our hands on MadTracker 2.5 for the first time. To make you accustomed with the new advantages, possibilities and goodies of MadTracker 2.5 as soon as possible, we will give you an overview of what you can expect, use, and enjoy. All new features will be introduced, including their practical uses and advantages. With this information, you will be able to squeeze out of MadTracker what you need in no time. Come with us please?

1: VST 2.3 Support
The industry standard for digital sound production and processing is completely supported in MadTracker 2.5. VST stands for Virtual Studio Technology, and has been developed by Steinberg to offer a software substitute for audio hardware. Its use falls under two categories, namely Virtual Effects and Virtual Instruments.

  • Virtual Effects: assign real-time effect plugins to individual tracks or the master track to transform your imagination into physical sound. Flange, excite, compress, warp, ringmod, limit, maximize, boost, filter and distort without limitations. MadTracker 2.5 enables you to stack multiple effects per track, and to route them for processor-friendly productions. Apart from that, final mastering can be performed via Virtual Effects assignment to the master track.
  • Virtual Instruments: software synthesizers offer you virtually unlimited flexibility concerning sound generating and adjusting. Build your own multi-layered instruments, tweak existing presets, emulate all major hardware synthesizers, and track with them like you used to handle normal samples. MadTracker 2.5 also supports multi-timbral Virtual Instruments, which enables you to use their full potential in a processor-friendly manner.

For both the effects as the instruments goes: MadTracker 2.5 offers a direct and intuitive automation system for VST plugins. Up to sixteen VST parameters of choice can be controlled as if it were normal track or instrument parameters. Furthermore, MadTracker 2.5 has a built-in VST organizer to easily access the plugins wanted, a web-based VST database to look up information, and offers both support for MIDI as well as regular keyboard control. You will love this. Trust us.

2: ReWire Support
Do you export drumtracks from MadTracker to your Cubase project? Render tons of huge wavefiles to master your songs in Acid? Sick and tired of seemingly endless saving, exporting, importing and switching to finish one piece of music?
Stop moaning. The solution is here. MadTracker 2.5 is officially the first tracker ever that is completely ReWire supporting*. ReWire is a technology by Propellerheads that connects multiple audio programs. You can now directly host the audio streams of MadTracker 2.5 inside for instance Cubase, ProTools or Acid. Simply start MadTracker 2.5 while working in your mastering program of choice, and use MadTracker as a tracker-based external synthesizer.
*Synth Application only

3: IRC Client
Imagine this: immediate feedback on the new project you're working on. Getting to know fellow musicians. Real-time support to become familiar with every feature that MadTracker 2.5 has to offer. All this with only one click of your mouse. MadTracker offers you this environment straight out of the box, since it is packed with a built-in IRC client. IRC is short for Internet Relay Chat, and offers a straightforward and versatile environment for chatting and P2P connecting with other users of MadTracker 2.5.

4: Track EQ & mpReverb2
Two new native effects have been implemented into MadTracker. MindPlay's Track EQ gives you a real-time visual view of and control over the frequencies per track via a three-band equalizer. Furthermore, Track EQ is also built in the Mixer. mpReverb2 is the successor of MadTracker's most used track effects. New parameters give you a higher quality of reverb that fits your needs even better!

5: New Automation
MadTracker 2.5 has its automation optimized, offering a more intuitive and accurate usage. Both native track effects as well as VST plugins can graphically be controlled over time for the most effective and efficient music programming. Less work for you, more energy left to put into your music.

6: Central Mixer
MadTracker 2.5's mixer has evolved into the digital heart of the package. From here you select and edit you VST effects and instruments, tweak the Master and individual track EQ's, and control volumes, labels and routing.

7: File browser
Another new feature in MadTracker 2.5 is the integrated file browser that quickly gives you an overview of the components of which your song consists, or to quickly add new samples or instruments.

8: New pattern manager
The new pattern manager is meant to make your life easier. Really. Patterns can now be dragged & dropped, assigned names, and quickly accessed.

9: Extended pattern view
When more is better, MadTracker 2.5 is best. The pattern editor can be made twice the original size for better views in chaotic hexadecimal times.

10: MIDI out
Want to brighten up your environment with your music made in MadTracker? Then export it to MIDI! MadTracker 2.5 offers an instrument-to-instrument mappable export to MIDI function. After uploading the MIDI file to your cellular phone(*), you are ready to rock your friends with your amazing music (**) anywhere, anytime.
From a more productional point of view: exporting to MIDI quickly enables non-MT users to work further with the source material of your song. Ideal for remixing purposes!
*cellular phone not included
**results may vary depending on qualities of the composer

11: Improved GUI
Of course it's the inside that counts. Sure. But an attractive partner for life is a nice bonus, uh? Without becoming the least bit CPU hungry, MadTracker 2.5's Graphical User Interface has most of its elements revamped.

12: CPU Meter
VST plugins ask resources. A lot, in some cases. And even though intelligent features such as effect routing and multi-timbral instruments, an indication of your power left can be essential. Thus: a CPU meter. Tiny. Humble. Yet functional.

13: Refresh rate Configuration
In past releases the graphical refresh rate of MadTracker was linked to your buffer size. With modern video cards that connection has become futile. Use & enjoy whatever refresh rate you and your rig prefer.

Convince yourself. Try it. Your studio won't be the same anymore.

Your friendly MadTracker Staff,
Yannick Delwiche & Inge Janse

Resources:
-MadTracker 2.5 download
-Free VST plugins
-ReWire technology and its members
-IRC and its possibilities

-Discuss this article in the forums
-Contact the author of this article