What's New in Max 8?

The MC System

The featured addition to Max 8 is the new MC system. MC, short for multichannel, offers a fundamental change to the way that audio signals are handled: patchcords can now carry up to 1024 channels of audio, and a single object can perform DSP tasks on all channels simultaneously. This changes the way you deal with large audio networks, and simplifies working with massively parallel datastreams.

The MC system is about more than multiple outputs/speakers. The new and updated MSP objects (created using the "mc" prefix, and atteched via multichannel patchcord) includes signal manipulation and management functions that open the doors for a new method of sound design: one that doesn't tie itself to a previous generation's resource limitations.

Improved Performance

There have been significant improvements in the performance of the Max application. Max itself loads up to twice as fast, and patches will load nearly 4x faster. Complex editing and formatting functions have been optimized, including activities that involve large numbers of UI objects.

There have also been improvments at the modular level, with performance enhancements in OpenGL tools, Max for Live parameters and some data-heavy objects - most notably, coll.

MIDI and Key Mapping

Max 8 includes a Mappings feature inspired by DAWs like Ableton Live, where you assign a physical control to a UI element by selecting an object and moving a MIDI controller - or pressing a key - to map to that object.

While Mappings is based on a familiar production concept, you can take it much further with Max, using keystrokes to initiate a complex series of events, or using a MIDI slider box to control a rack of synthesizers.

Vizzie 2, featuring OpenGL

Originally developed as a quick introduction to Max, the Vizzie system has become a staple for developing interactive visual prototypes. With Max 8, Vizzie has been completely rewritten to use OpenGL as its underlying engine, allowing for much more complex patching.

Not only can you use Vizzie modules to create high-perforance visual patches, but you can also interface with standard OpenGL programming, the Jitter physics engine and other advanced visual systems for development of deeply immersive graphics.

Node for Max

Max 8 features a tight integration with the Node development environment , giving you the opportunity to create web servers, interactive mobile patches and network-savvy API applications using this widely-used system.

Taking advantage of the NPM library, you will be able to find tools to manage almost any networking and computing task that your patches might need.

Patching Efficiency Improvements

There have been several improvements to the patching environment, offering a more fluid and optimized patching experience. These include:

  • Insertion of objects directly into patchcords.
  • Selecting, moving and managing objects as a group.
  • Improved viewing and filtering of Max Console contents.
  • More extensive debugging using event and MC probes.
  • New color themes for a more comfortable patching environment.
  • Operate While Unlocked mode for easy interaction with UI elements.

New Search Functionality

The in-patcher search system has been vastly improved, and now indexes and searches all objects, documentation, snippets, patchs, examples, media files, packages, plug-ins, lessons and Cycling '74 forum posts.

Typing any phrase into the Search Sidebar will give you immediate access to all of the information available within the Max application, and includes the entire set of articles and forums on cycling74.com. This will help you keep vital information close at hand, and can help you discover new objects and techniques.

And much more!

  • VST3 support
  • Event-domain Gen programming
  • New chooser object for list display
  • External text editor support
  • New color selection palette
  • Multitouch and HiDPI support on Windows
  • Mouse and trackpad sooming and scrolling
  • Improved line functionality
  • Extended poly~ patch use
  • Improvements in multichannel file access
  • Support for tabbed OS X windows
  • New Paste and Match Style edit option
  • Better MIDI support, including RPN and NRPN
  • jit.cellblock support for displaying signal data
  • Additional outlet for poly~ to provide voice info
  • @expr mode for Gen-based expressions
  • New modes for the dial object
  • The console object provides access to Max Console contents
  • Improvements to the patcher style system