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Purchasing FL Studio gives you a valid licence to use both macOS and Windows versions, including Lifetime Free Updates. How to use FL Studio on a Mac Install the FL Studio native macOS version (requires macOS 10.13.6 or higher). FL Studio is a powerful one-stop-shop for sound recording and music production. FL Studio software comes in four editions, the prices of which correspond to the available function. With the better editions, you get to edit audio clips, access the full version of the DirectWave sampler, and more. Using FL Studio since 3.x, switched to Mac for hardware support but I switch to bootcamp to make drum loops. Focusrite interface Access Virus TI2 Axiom Pro 49 Maschine 2.0 Launchpad Lots of software VSTs/AUs.
The original version of FruityLoops (FL, for short) was developed for Image Line by Didier Dambrin in 1997. It was officially released a year later while it was still, reportedly, essentially only a MIDI drum machine.
Now, for those of who-who are awake and preferably sitting the right way, a MIDI drum machine is an electronic tool that creates percussion and rhythms. Drum machines create artificial percussion lines digitally in the absence of an actual drummer, and modern versions can create interesting-sounding and unique mixes on the fly.
Most drum machines even allow users to program their own types of types of rhythms - slow, fast, medium, staccato, etc. - as well as other sounds or prerecorded samples can. These machines significantly influenced the music of the 1980’s and popular artist such as Peter Gabriel, Fleetwood Mac, Prince, and Stevie Wonder have reportedly used them.
Drum Machines, DAWs, and, Finally, FL Studio for Mac
The drum machine soon evolved to become a software version that could be downloaded for home and personal computer, but, before it could get there, the technology had to undergo one more transformation. The digital audio workstation (DAW) is an electronic device used for recording sound, editing it, and producing complex audio files. Essentially it is a computer and soundboard the is pre-programmed with sound manipulating software.
More advanced than a drum machine, DAWs could be rolled out in a number of configurations, but most had a central sound interface and mixing station attached to the core percussion unit. The idea, of course, was that all of the sound recording and post-production work could take place all in one machine.
Today, DAW hardware is still used in professional studios for the production and recording of music, speech, pre-recorded radio, books-on-tape, and television. But, for the home user, DJ, and casual musician a DAW usually refers to computer software for laptops, PCs, Macs, and even mobile devices, with FL Studio being one of the most well-known.
FL Studio, though, has undergone a number of updates since its introduction 20 years ago, and, on]Ma 22nd of this year it even introduced a native MacOS-compatible version. FL Studio 20 includes many items that the Mac Beta version did not, including support for time signatures, freezing for clips (to allow for processing in the background), new recording options, a smoother workflow, and the ability to have more than one project going at a time.
This long-awaited release came after the application made is original Mac-friendly debut in 2013. But, at that time, the reception was cool at best, reportedly due to errors in the programing language, Delphi, which needed to be completely overhauld to support the 64-bit MacOS running environment.
Download FL Studio for Mac From the Image Line Website
The upshot, though, was that, after the long wait, your FL Studio license would cover the software versions for both your Mac and Windows machines. Moreover, if you owned a license for the PC variety, you could download the Mac version for no additional charge, and projects were now completely compatible with both operating systems, despite third-party add-ons.
You can get the most basic “fruity” version of FL Studio for Mac or PC for $99 on the company’s website, while the pimped out, full version goes for $899 and includes all of the instruments, a boatload of plug-ins, and music samples galore.
Offering the ability to effortlessly migrate projects between PC and Mac with one license is no paltry thing, and it only improves what was an already intuitive and easy to use editing layout. Plus, the list of features tops what you would find in many DAWS that cost twice as much. So, let’s have a closer look at what FL Studio for Mac really offers.
- Time signatures support.
- Adjust the number of measures in a bar for proper viewing.
- Clip consolidation for easy viewing
- Playlist arrangements and menu for multiple projects.
- Picker panel with queued up audio clips.
- Plugin delay compensation to help support mixer sends.
- New and Improved mixer menu with FX slots
- Continuous adjustment while you roll the mouse wheel over the time icon or latency display.
- Updated Toolbar
- Graph Editor displays note velocity, pitch, pan, etc.
- Sampler Channels offer precomputed effects on the fly.
Clearly, version 20 is a beast of an update regardless of the fact that the software now offers support for MacOS. And, with support is for both VST and AU plugins as well as third-party plugins, the Mac version is as robust as the legacy version, but you will also get Image-Lines's lifetime updates plan, which, in an of itself, might be a sound reason to jump aboard the fruity loops bandwagon.
Now, as if all of those reasons were not enough to convince you to download FL Studio for Mac, the fact that you can download it for free might just seal the deal. That’s right! Get a free, non-time restricted version of FL Studio from the Image Line download page and try the software out for as long as you like.
The trial version is a complete version of FL Studio 20, and, albeit with some crucial limitations, you’ll have access to all of the plug-ins and features we talked about here. Plus, when you do decide to buy, there is no need to reinstall. Simply download the registration code, and, boom, you are in.
FL Studio Plug-Ins and Third Party Software
Much like Mac’s proprietary Final Cut, when you purchase FL Studio for Mac, you’ll have access to many plug-ins and the option to download and install a vast array of third-party software. Of course, you can buy many of these a la carte off from the Image Line website, but let's take a look at a few in order to see what you are actually getting when you buy the premium version of FL Studio for Mac.
- FX Bundle
- Gol’s Bundle
- Maxx Bundle
- Synth Bundle
- Value Bundle
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Keep in mind that Image line is offering FL Studio with all bundles for $899.00, while they estimate the value of their software bundles to be at $707.50. If you factor in a lifetime of updates, you are in for deep discounts indeed, although, curiously, we noted that if you buy the 99 dollar version and then add in the $708 dollars (rounding up) of plug-ins afterward, it will only cost $808.
We guess that may be where the audio recording feature comes in? Nevertheless, there still seems to be some added value there, and, plus the addition of third-party software makes the FL Studio product even more robust. Again, this alternative software are available at a la carte from the Image Line website and are not included in any of the FL Studio for Mac bundles.
Regarding third-party software, Image-Line has created an extensive links page with resources that include a Knowledge Base, a FL Studio Help Page, YouTube Videos, a Song Exchange, and content libraries. Find topics like Sample Fusion, where you can download a vast number of free samples, FPC kits, and FL Keys libraries, and you will also enjoy links to recognized partners which include the following:
- KVR, a site for plugin reviews, news, and links to plugins
- ASIO4ALL - a site offering 3rd-party device drivers for device troubleshooting.
- The Freesound Project - one of the world’s largest databases containing Creative Commons licensed sounds.
- LibriVox - a site full of public domain recordings and modulations.
Please note, though, that in order access many of these resources, you must first create an account here. Upon successful login, you can read posts, download files, access the knowledge base and even post in the forum.
FL Studio for Mac Wrap-up
After hearing about the history, the cross-compatibility, the added value, the resources, and the intuitive, user-friendly design, you might still be on the fence about FL Studio, and, to be fair, there are competitors out there.
However, consider that FL Studio also offers mobile versions of their software for editing on the go on your iPad or Android device. And the mobile version doesn’t skimp on features, either. You can use high-quality synthesizers and samples, the Step Sequencer, for fast percussion programming, and Touch Controllers with configurable virtual piano-keyboard and drum pads.
Plus, you will get all of the MIDI controls, the ability to live record sound, and a high-performance audio engine with a mixer and effects, like Auto Ducker, Piano Roll, Chorus, Limiter, Compressor, Distortion, Equalizer, Reverb, Flanger, and more.
Moreover, you’ll be able to export formats like WAV, MP3, and AAC, as well as sync to compatible devices and share with variously sized screens. So what are you waiting for? Go ahead and download FL studio for Mac today.
Big news for FL Studio fans as developers Image-Line confirm that the DAW will be released as a native Mac application.
Image-Line, developers of the hugely popular DAW FL Studio, formerly known as Fruity Loops, have confirmed that the software will be released as a native application for Mac OS X.
The company’s Knowledge Base FAQ entry on the subject has been updated to reflect the news, with the company explaining that the development team had completed work on native OS X versions of a number of FL Studio’s built-in instruments, and have now moved on to a native version of the forthcoming FL Studio 12 application itself.
A version of the software ‘wrapped’ using Codeweavers CrossOver was released last year as a public beta for existing FL Studio licence holders, but poor third-party plugin support always made it an unsatisfactory solution. Some users have turned to alternatives including Boot Camp and Parallels Desktop, while we’ve also heard of at least a couple of pro producers who switched to Logic or Ableton on the Mac but kept a PC around just to run FL Studio now and again.
The release of a Mac version of FL Studio 12 – expected some time in 2015 – will pitch the DAW against Propellerhead Reason, currently the closest Mac alternative.
A Windows beta version of FL Studio 12 was released for testing earlier this month.
Check out the full statement from Image-Line below:
Will there ever be a native Mac OS X release of FL Studio?
We started by testing a FL Studio Mac OS X BETA (Crossover Wrapped) version with direct installation on Mac OS X. But this is still a Windows program, running on OS X. The interest in the wrapped beta, and the problems we faced supporting 3rd party VST plugins in it, lead the team to start work on native OS X VST versions of Edison, Gross Beat, Harmless, Harmor, Maximus, Ogun, Slicex, Sytrus, Vocodex. See how to get these plugins here.
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The VST plugin testing, was in fact, the start of the FL Studio native OS X compatibility development. The VST plugins use the same code-base as FL Studio itself and if we could get these working to spec on OS X, then FL Studio would likely follow soon after.
Well, the plugin testing is progressing nicely, and so the team has turned their attention to FL Studio 12 itself. It’s a long and slow process and we can’t make any promises, since we may come across unexpected and or unsolvable technical problems. But work is indeed under way. Below are some of the issues we face porting FL Studio to native Mac OS X and explains why this is taking ‘so long’:
- Delphi:FL Studio is written in Delphi with in-line assembly for much of the DSP. This is one reason why FL Studio and its graphics are so fluid.Delphi only recently got the ability to compile to OS X. So while this is great, it’s a 1st-generation OS X compiler, it’s cranky and sometimes causes problems of its own. But, before this came along, we needed to port well over 1 million lines of code to another language. We never thought that was a good idea, and it’s why we never did it before. But, things have changed, so let’s call this progress.
- Windows API:FL Studio is tightly bound to the Windows API that takes care of moving, minimizing, maximizing windows, detecting cursor position, drag & drop, opening windows dialogs, clipboard functions, decoding MP3s, … so a port requires all operating system dependent calls to be isolated & replaced by bi-platform dependent functions. That’s a major part of what the team are doing now.FYI, just getting all this system dependent code from Deckadance (which was created more or less with porting in mind) and replacing it with bi-platform versions took almost 6 months. FL Studio is many times the size of Deckadance, so please be patient.
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Will this impact on the development of FL Studio for Windows?
No, the team working on the conversion to OS X is completely separate from the Windows development team. They talk, but don’t share any bodies that we know of, so it’s business as usual on the Microsoft side of things. Bill Gates sends his regards BTW.
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The FL studio Support Team