Hit’n’Mix music-editing software

Editing a song in Hit 'n' Mix

There are a number of audio programs available that allow users to import and edit MP3 music files on a computer.

These programs generally display a ‘waveform’ on the computer screen that represents the soundwaves of the music itself. Users can then modify the sound in various ways. However, such programs don’t allow users to isolate and edit individual notes.

Hit ‘n’ Mix is an innovative new application that attempts to go much further than previous products. The program can import existing MP3 or WAV audio files, or copy songs straight off a CD. It then analyses the recordings and attempts to isolate every single note within each song or track.

This conversion process took a while – about six minutes for Queen’s four-minute long Another One Bites The Dust on our reasonably powerful test PC – but once it’s done, Hit’n’Mix displays every single note. The screen display can be a bit confusing at first but the notes are colour-coded to help you out, with vocal lines coloured yellow, guitars in blue and other instruments in other colours.

You can select and play notes and phrases just by clicking on them with the mouse, then copy and move them around within the recording. Moving a note higher up the screen raises its pitch (making it sound higher) and there are a number of audio effects that can be applied such a touch of vibrato to a guitar solo, or using harmony to create a more layered vocal sound.

The Instruments panel in the lower-right corner of the screen provides extra help by listing the names of the various instruments within a recording and clicking an instrument’s name in the list will isolate it so only its notes are shown.

This aspect of the program isn’t perfect – it sometimes labelled Brian May’s guitar as a violin (which in fact may have been what the guitarist was aiming for) – but you can correct this in the Instruments panel if you need to. The audio quality suffered sometimes when we were picking out notes, although the developer has told us it is working on a free update that will significantly improve audio quality.

These rough edges mean that Hit’n’Mix isn’t precise enough to use as a professional editing tool.

However, it’s fascinating as a music fan to watch your favourite songs being deconstructed on-screen, and to experiment by picking out favourite parts.

To download this software visit

www.hitnmix.com

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