Latest Reviews

Lemur iOS DAW Controller App

Lemur iOS DAW Controller App - Screenshot 1
Lemur iOS DAW Controller App - Screenshot 1
Lemur iOS DAW Controller App - Screenshot 1


Developer: Liine
Version: 3.2
Type: DAW Controller App
Price: $49.99


Ease of Use


Total Score



Complete flexibility and control to add button, knobs, faders, etc. Great customizable GUI. Allows for multiple iPad Lemur setups.


Takes time and MIDI knowledge to create templates.

Posted February 9, 2012 by Stephan Earl

Full Review

There are some good iOS DAW controller apps out there for virtual instrument plug-ins and Digital Audio Workstations.  Some such as AC-7 Core are very good in terms of graphic interface, but mostly follow the Mackie Protocol and don’t allow flexibility to customize the controls to your needs. Others like Touch OSC are also good, but isn’t supported by all DAWs and in my opinion can be quite complicated for the non-programming musician to setup. Well now there’s Lemur iOS DAW controller app by Liine.

Lemur iOS DAW Controller App - Screenshot 1

Lemur iOS DAW Controller App

Remember the Jazz Mutant Lemur DAW Controller?

You may remember the Lemur multi-touch hardware DAW controller by Jazz Mutant released in 2002 which cost about $2,500. Along with the original hardware and software, Jazz Mutant released add-on applications such as the Dexter DAW controller and the MU controller for Ableton Live. The hardware Lemur has since reached end-of-life, however the Lemur is now back on the iOS platform at a cost of $49. While this may seem expensive by iOS app standards, this is a steal considering what this app does and how much this same technology cost just a couple of years ago.

The potential of the Lemur as a music workstation and DAW controller is mouthwatering. If you are the kind of musician that is OK with spending time dragging and dropping knobs, faders, sliders, buttons, switches, pads and multiballs onto an editor in order to create the most complete controller that you’ve ever owned… you will have a field day here. There is some learning curve in creating a new Lemur template, however most items are fairly straight forward if you’re familiar with MIDI control.  Just drag a fader onto the editor, assign it to a MIDI port and channel number, match this control on your DAW and it’s ready for action. There are, however, many advanced functions that are also available, but require knowledge of scripting in order to make them work.  For this, I would suggest starting with one of the user templates from Liine’s website, and looking through the user forum where some generous users have posted scripts.

My First Lemur DAW Controller Template

I’m not a script programmer by a long shot, but after downloading the Lemur app and a user template, I was able to immediately begin crafting my own template for Cubase based on my needs.  I then expanded this template into three separate templates:

  • a 16 channel Mackie controller
  • an 8 channel Mackie controller
  • an iPhone Mackie controller

The beauty of Lemur is that I can (and will) continue to build upon these templates and create other pages to control specific virtual plug-ins and effects.  Screen-shots of the templates are in this article and I’ve posted a demonstration video below.  You can download a copy of this template HERE.

Lemur DAW Controller 8ch Screenshot

You’ve got no interest in scripting or Lemur template design?

No problem. The Lemur DAW controller app was released in December 2011 and already there are some good user templates on Liine’s website to choose from. In addition, some of the top template developers of the legacy Lemur are already at work, and Liine has begun releasing Premium Content which include (at the time of this writing) a MU template, AB Lemur Bundle and AB Breakpoint. I anticipate that more DAW specific Premium Content will be available in the near future.


Lemur DAW Controller Setup

Setting up the Lemur app is pretty straight forward on Mac or PC and there are several helpful setup videos available on Liine’s Support page. Since Liine does a good job of showing Mac and PC setup, I won’t focus on that but will focus on some tips that can be helpful when setting up templates or using Lemur:


Lemur has very low latency over a standard Wi-Fi connection. However
 performance and accuracy will be based on the speed of your Wi-Fi router 
and computer’s Wi-Fi card. If Lemur performance is sluggish using your home internet Wi-
Fi connection, I recommend that you create an ad-hoc wireless network. An
 ad-hoc network is a peer-to-peer network that bypasses a router, so your
connection is direct and much quicker. In my Cubase video demo I’m using a standard Wi-Fi connection and I experience very little to no latency as you can see in the video, but I know that all Wi-Fi connections are not created equal. There’s a demonstration of how to setup an ad-hoc network on Liine’s support page.

TIP: For better performance and flexibility with wireless iPad apps, I recommend setting up a separate network from your home internet that is solely dedicated to your home studio.  Check out my Home Recording Studio Tour to see how I have this setup in my home studio.

Cubase Device Setup

When using a Lemur template with 16 channels, you have to setup two Mackie Controls. Each Mackie setup controls 8 channels so adding two will allow you to control 16 channels, *Important: in Cubase you must press the reset button in the Device Setup menu page in order for Cubase to read both Mackie setups. This drove me crazy for a few minutes when I kept adding the second Mackie Control and Cubase wasn’t updating the project.

Some Lemur templates for Cubase will require you to add both a Mackie Control and Generic Remote in the Device Setup menu. This is because the Mackie protocol has set controls that it works with (i.e. faders, pan, arm, solo, mute, etc.). However, it doesn’t control other DAW functions (i.e. quantize, edit functions, specific plug-ins, etc.), so these are controlled using MIDI continuous controllers or MIDI cc. Using the generic remote in Cubase you’re able to assign MIDI cc to match the controls assigned in the Lemur editor.

Here’s a video of me demonstrating the Lemur iPS DAW controller with Cubase 6.

So if you’re looking for a good DAW controller for your iOS device, you should definitely give Lemur a try.

Stephan Earl

Composing, recording and producing music in the home studio environment for over 25 years, musician and author Stephan Earl now enjoys sharing his home studio setup experience with other home studio recording musicians via

One Comment

    Dan P.


    This is really fantastic, so easier to work in Cubase. Thank you for this wonderful explanation and template.

    However, I’m wondering if you have any tip on how to implement VSTi instruments?


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