As a musician, you know how annoying it can be to be away from your favorite instrument. If you’re bored and you don’t have your instrument with you, maybe you can quench that thirst for music with browser-based virtual instruments. If so, we have just the perfect virtual instruments for you to play around with.
Bear in mind, however, that these programs aren’t quite ready to replace any software instrument or hardware. But as far as browser-based music is concerned, they’re definitely a good sign of what may eventually be possible in the near future. As expected, most of these programs are synthesizers, but that doesn’t stop them from being fun.
This advanced modular sound synthesizer lets you combine various sound generators, effects, sequencers and utility modules to create pretty much anything, from dubstep-worth bass lines to otherworldly electronic soundscapes. With its flexible and modular nature, the only limit is your imagination.
Patchwork lets you save and share patches simply by pressing the ‘Share Your Patch’ button at the bottom of the screen, which will save the current patch on the server and generate a link that will automatically open the patch.
Built on Flash, Patchwork works perfectly well in all browsers.
Inudge is a user-friendly tone matrix that lets you create looping musical patterns just by clicking on a 16×16 grid and “drawing” the patterns you want. You don’t even need to know any musical theory to use this program because all the pitches are within the pentatonic scale, so almost anything you come up with will still be in tune.
Inudge comes with 8 different sounds, including a drum machine. It also has a Get and Share feature that lets you share your creations to your friends and family via e-mail, as well as generate a link that you can post online. You can also embed the Inudge widget using the HTML code provided.
Just like Patchwork, Inudge is a Flash application, so you won’t have any issues regarding web browser compatibility.
This monophonic synthesizer is inspired by the monophonic analog synths of the 1970s and 1980s, like the Roland SH-101. It won’t win any awards for complexity, but it’s worth noting that a lot of hit records were made using synths with similar features. It also lets you load and save presets, and you can even share your presents on Twitter.
You can play MZ – 101 using your computer keyboard or by clicking on the onscreen keys. And just like other browser-based synths, MZ – 101 relies on the Web Audio AP, which means it won’t work in browsers that don’t support the API.
Audiotool is a robust music-making tool that’s more than just your run-of-the-mill virtual instrument. It comes with 4 synthesizers and 3 drum machines, as well as effects that can be used to modify the instrument’s sounds like distortion, reverb, and delay. It also has sequencing capabilities, so you can sequence and compose entire songs. If composing music isn’t your thing, you can just play around with one of the virtual instruments using your computer’s keyboard and pressing onCaps Lockto get started right away.
Audiotool was built on Flash and should play well regardless of what browser you’re using.
PatternSketch is an audio sequencer and drum machine that lets you create patterns or play the drum kit in real time using your computer keyboard. You can choose from a variety of drum kits, ranging from realistic Jazz and Live drum kits, to drum kits based on the Roland TR-808 and TR-909 drum machines. It also comes with pre-made drum patterns.
By using this tool, you can easily save and share patterns, opening up the possibility of collaboration. You can also export your patterns as MP3, WAV or OGG files for offline listening. You can even send your pattern directly to Soundcloud.
PatternSketch works best in Chrome and Firefox.