Molten Drum Machine – iPad App Review

Molten Drum Machine from developer One Red Dog Media is a versatile and easy to use 8-track sample based synthesis engine and drum machine built exclusively for the Apple iPad. The power and programming flexibility of Molten lies in the familiar grid based layout, flexible time signature and dividable step sequencer, allowing for tuplet-based (irregular) rhythms.

We interviewed the developer of this app, Peter Johnson a while back to get more background on the development of this app – you can read that interview here.

Read the rest of our great review below…


As you can see from the above image you can have as many as eight instruments running at the same with as little as one beat on one page through sixteen beats over four pages in a pattern. What’s more, Molten even allows individual beats to be subdivided into as many as nine pieces for more complex sounds beyond music in common 4/4 time.


It comes bundled with a raft of sample percussive sounds and rhythm sequences, or ‘Patterns’ as Molten calls them, that can be played and then edited or altered with the integrated controls. As well as the sample sounds (totaling 42 on our machine) you can load and store your own then process and share them with your friends.


The controls range from simple shaping effects such envelopes to track effects (Tremelo, EQ, Filter and Bit-crusher) through to higher-end global stereo master effects including reverb, EQ and compressor for real polish.


So with the simple to use interface,flexible timing options and wealth of effects, Molten is an intuitive and handy beat maker, but what else does it have to offer?


Well there’s more under the hood, if you care to look. Molten’s support for MIDI and in particular MIDI beat clock means this synthesizer can be synced with a number of hardware devices over WiFi or the USB port (using the iPad’s Camera Connection kit). And Molten users can leverage the iPad’s support for audio clipboard technology to swap beats between other iPad apps, adding value if you think you really need justify the price.



Are there shortcomings for a pro-worthy beat maker? Well, maybe the global master effects aren’t quite as flexible or customizable layout-wise as they could be. And, it’s only human nature to want more patterns and factory samples to choose from, perhaps as a download from the developer’s site rather than bundled. It’s certainly compelling enough for serious users and even if you’ve never been inclined to dabble with a drum machine before Molten’s beat making abilities will have you enthralled for hours and hours. Definitely recommended.

Joanne Carter, creator of the world’s most popular mobile photography and art website—— TheAppWhisperer platform has been a pivotal cyberspace for mobile artists of all abilities to learn about, to explore, to celebrate and to share mobile artworks. Joanne’s compassion, inclusivity, and humility are hallmarks in all that she does, and is particularly evident in the platform she has built. In her words, “We all have the potential to remove ourselves from the centre of any circle and to expand a sphere of compassion outward; to include everyone interested in mobile art, ensuring every artist is within reach”, she has said. Promotion of mobile artists and the art form as a primary medium in today’s art world, has become her life’s focus. She has presented lectures bolstering mobile artists and their art from as far away as the Museum of Art in Seoul, South Korea to closer to her home in the UK at Focus on Imaging. Her experience as a jurist for mobile art competitions includes: Portugal, Canada, US, S Korea, UK and Italy. And her travels pioneering the breadth of mobile art includes key events in: Frankfurt, Naples, Amalfi Coast, Paris, Brazil, London. Pioneering the world’s first mobile art online gallery - has extended her reach even further, shipping from London, UK to clients in the US, Europe and The Far East to a global group of collectors looking for exclusive art to hang in their homes and offices. The online gallery specialises in prints for discerning collectors of unique, previously unseen signed limited edition art. Her journey towards becoming The App Whisperer, includes (but is not limited to) working for a paparazzi photo agency for several years and as a deputy editor for a photo print magazine. Her own freelance photographic journalistic work is also widely acclaimed. She has been published extensively both within the UK and the US in national and international titles. These include The Times, The Sunday Times, The Guardian, Popular Photography & Imaging, dpreview, NikonPro, Which? and more recently with the BBC as a Contributor, Columnist at Vogue Italia and Contributing Editor at LensCulture. Her professional photography has also been widely exhibited throughout Europe, including Italy, Portugal and the UK. She is currently writing several books, all related to mobile art and is always open to requests for new commissions for either writing or photography projects or a combination of both. Please contact her at: