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Shruti Box app for iPhone and iPad

4.4 ( 704 ratings )
Music Entertainment
Developer: C.BARATAY
0.99 USD
Current version: 4.0, last update: 1 year ago
First release : 02 Jan 2009
App size: 41.08 Mb

The shruti box is a small instrument with reeds, used to play a drone in music. Imagine an harmonium or accordeon without any buttons.

You just select a set of notes, and the shruti will play them together continuously. The main purpose is to create a musical atmosphere to sustain the solist with its voice or musical instrument.

The Shruti box is usually used in karnatak or hindustani music in India.

You can create different musical atmosphere with the three different sound flavours of our Shruti box:
- Traditional Harmonium sound, with deep sound of original reeds
- Light shruti sound, which provides a clearer sound
- Modern flute organ, simpler, heavenly

If youre interested to play indian music (karnatac or hindusthani), this is the perfect "travel" shruti box you need. Tune your shruti in the indian harmonic scale. You select harmonic scale, and the base note. Thats it.

If you prefer to play western music and you need a tempered chord, then tune the shruti to the common tempered scale.

Our shruti box can do automatic transposition. You can configure it in any key with the same keyboard position. You just need to select the note to play on the C key of the keyboard.

You can play up to 4 notes together (with or without octaves). It will produce a sound of high quality, much better than all the electronic devices you can buy for playing shruti.

For getting the best sound from this instrument, it is advised to use a good headphone or a pair of speakers with loudspeaker.

Pros and cons of Shruti Box app for iPhone and iPad

Shruti Box app good for

I bought the other Shruti when I first got my iPhone. It was basically a tone generator, with no reedy sound. This version is much better, and has many options for tuning and tone. I just bought their Harmonium as well, and am hoping they do a Tanpura, and Tabla to complete my Indian instrument collection.
After getting a glimpse of Vidya Multimedias applications with iTabla, I have been eagerly awaiting their next iTunes product. Shruti Box is first rate. Very very good sound and like iTabla, very tweakable. Other than an ability to save presets, I can think of little to improve it.
I think this app, as well as the developers harmonium app, have potential but arent quite there yet. I think this app seems a bit more stable (in a 1s & 0s programming sense) than my experience with the harmonium, but as I said in that review Im partially rating this higher than the current version may deserve simply because I got the impression that the apps creator is genuinely working on making the app better. One thing I think this app could really use is some type of bellows feature (like the other shruti app has) not only for the sake of authenticity, but also because of the pulsating sounds possible with the bellows. So I suppose this app isnt quite where the competition is yet, but it seems to have a good starting point.
Thanks for this instrument, I like the atmosphere it creates. Very well in tune. Im playing flute and doing some vocals, its very usefull and Im having pleasure to play... Please, add more great sounds !
As the writer of the other srutibox, I commend this app as a functional take on authentically useful Carnatic droning, with a straightforward and familiar interface. The timbres could stand a bit of the breath- like growliness of an analog Shruti Box, but maybe you can add that later. But - Simple is also Good!
Im using this app with my iPod Touch 4g and a small battery powered bluetooth speaker. The sound is excellent! It compares quite favorably with a real wood Shruti Box. We use this app in our Celtic music duo with harp, hammered dulcimer, flute, bouzouki, fiddle, and concertina. You can easily configure a very pleasing drone sound with a tonic and the 5th above - - - or even add a third, if you wish. There a 5 different voices: Shruti Box, vocal choir, harmonium, button accordion, and organ. The sounds are rich and slightly wavering, just like a real Shruti Box, so you dont get a robotic sine wave generator sound. There is an option to have the sounds be an octave lower. You can switch between a tempered scale and a harmonic scale. I give this app a 5 star rating.

Some bad moments

There are unfortunately no sound samples posted on the makers website, and had I listened I would not have bought it. If you, like me, wanted an app substitute for those Shruti Boxes that can go up to $200, this is not it. The sound is very sine-wavy and is fine for practicing, but not for presentation. Youre better off downloading tanpura recordings of various pitches that are available free online and putting them on loop in your iPod or iPhones iTunes, as I will be now doing.
Not the most user-friendly app. Needs default settings such as c# etc to be preset and all I need to do is click and play....right now it seems very convoluted with me having to fiddle with each key. If I cannot configure this within a minute, Im wasting my time on a paid-app! The output sound quality isnt good either. The throughput/volume is too low compared to the sound from my other musical notes.
The instruments sound no where close to originals as claimed. Poor midi like sounds.
This app is not very user friendly. As a beginner i wish it was easier to work with.
Not a shruti sound, no dynamics, just a tone generator. Not really worth a buck.