Today we're excited to release a public beta of Max 6.1 as we rapidly approach release. Detailed release notes are linked below, but the most significant changes in Max 6.1 are a 64bit application, Live 9 support, new Gen features, improved load time, and other optimizations.
Many low level changes have been made in this version, especially for supporting 64bit in a shared code base. We're still working out some kinks and fleshing out some of the documentation. Please take some time to try your existing patchers in the 32bit version, and let us know where anything seems to have been broken, as compared with Max 6.0.8. That would be a huge help to us. As always with beta software, be sure to back up important work and don't rely on it for mission critical live performance.
64bit application support is a big deal, and those of you who have been hitting the limits of 32bit memory usage will be excited. However, I'd like to balance expectations here. This being our first 64bit release, we will not have all of the features of the 32bit version, especially regarding Jitter and Quicktime support. Quicktime is simply not available on Windows under 64bit and the QTKit API on Macintosh has fewer features, and requires a dramatic rewrite of our code base. We will be continuing to work on Jitter video playback and other QT features in the 64bit version, but many features won't be in our initial release.
Max and MSP should have nearly all the same features, except where it relies on QT (e.g. PICT files are not currently supported under 64bit and instead we recommend converting to PNG or JPG). However, 3rd party developers will need to port their objects to 64bit for them to be able to run inside the 64bit version of Max. There is no loading of 32bit externals in 64bit version of Max.
We will be providing an SDK for 3rd party developers in the next few weeks, but it will likely take some time before any particular 3rd party external will be available to use. We would recommend that if you do want to use the 64bit version and you have 3rd party dependencies that you see if you can remove these dependencies by using core objects or abstractions to replace these dependencies, until your favorite 3rd party object is available.
On Macintosh, the application comes as a single FAT bundle, by default set to run in 32bit mode. To run in 64bit mode, select the application and "Get Info" from the finder. In the "General" tab there should be a check box which says "Open in 32-bit mode". You can turn this off to run in 64bit. If you want to keep separate 32bit and 64bit versions, you can duplicate your max folder, select one of the applications and set it to run in 64bit as described. Externals are also FAT bundles--i.e. contain both 32 and 64bit code.
On Windows, there are separate 32bit and 64bit installers and applications, and externals are in separate .mxe (32bit) and .mxe64 files.
Max for Live users will need to use Live 9 in conjunction with Max 6.1. Live 9 will be released on March 5th, and as you may have heard, Max for Live is now included in the Suite bundle. The factory content will look a little different than in previous versions and you will need to download and install the appropriate live packs for the content which previously was installed by default. In addition to the exciting features of Live 9, there are some great new devices in Max for Live, especially the drum synths and convolution reverb, but I will recommend you go to the ableton.comwebsite for more information regarding Live 9 and Max for Live.
New Gen features:
Gen has some significant additions and improvements in this release. Gen now has an integrated operator reference in the side bar to make learning and discovery easier than in previous releases. The operator set has grown, and the GenExpr language now supports recursive functions (for CPU, not GPU targets), calling gen patchers as functions, and defining functions with named parameters. But most exciting in this release is that we have a beta version of code export. This means that you can take your gen~ patchers and export them to c++ code and your jit.gl.pix objects and export them to GLSL code. This feature will have only limited support in our initial Max 6.1 release, but over the coming months, we will be working to improve the generated code, template examples, and documentation to make this feature useful for those of you who have been waiting for this capability. Note that the code export feature will assume that you are familiar with C++ and working with a development IDE like XCode or Visual Studio.
Please take the time with any problems you experience to strip down to a clear example patch with steps to reproduce, and provide us clear application, operating system, and any other relevant info (especially if you are running in 32 or 64bit) by filling out the bug reporting form: https://cycling74.com/max6-bug-form/
There is a new feature in Max 6.1 which should make providing us application and operating system information easier for you. In the Max menu, select "About Max", and then click the link in the About Max window which reads "Copy support information to clipboard". Then you can paste into your message something which looks like the following.
"version" : "Beta Version 6.1.0 (d35f01e)",
"platform" : "mac",
"arch" : "x64",
"osversion" : "Mac OS X Version 10.8.2 x86_64",
"samplerate" : 44100,
"iovs" : 512,
"sigvs" : 64,
"scheduler_in_audio_interrupt" : "off",
"audio_drivername" : "Core Audio",
"audio_driver_subname" : "",
"eventinterval" : 2,
"overdrive" : "on",
"mixerparallel" : "off",
"mixercrossfade" : 0,
"mixerlatency" : 30.0,
"mixerramptime" : 10.0
Thanks again for your help in testing this release and continuing inspire us with your creativity.