CANTA - Free download and software reviews - CNET Download.com

CANTA

CNET Editors' review

The premise behind CANTA is that you can train yourself to sing on key using visual feedback that indicates when you are or aren't hitting the correct note. We thought that was an interesting idea, and since we're always looking to improve our karaoke skills, we were eager to try it out. Unfortunately, CANTA works better in theory than in practice.

The program's interface is definitely not the most intuitive we've ever seen, and the first thing we did was seek out the Help file so we could figure out how to get started. The Help file was not particularly detailed, but it did provide basic instructions. We managed to configure our microphone and then downloaded a MIDI that we wanted to try singing along with. CANTA ostensibly shows your accuracy by displaying a scrolling graphic with green rectangles where the correct notes are and a red line that corresponds to the notes that you actually sing. We started playing our MIDI, only to find that our microphone was picking up sound from our speakers and displaying the red line even when we weren't singing. We solved this problem by plugging in a pair of headphones so that we could hear the MIDI but CANTA could not. After several seemingly inaccurate run-throughs, we realized that there was actually a lag between our singing and CANTA's voice display; even though we knew we were singing the right notes at the right times, they weren't synching up with the green rectangles in CANTA, and we always looked like we were about a beat behind. Although we suppose it's possible that CANTA includes some way to correct this, by this point we had had about enough of the program's abstruse interface and vague Help file. CANTA is a great idea, but it needs some improvements before it will really be useful.

CANTA installs and uninstalls without issues. We recommend this program with reservations.

Publisher's Description

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Results 1-1 of 1

  • 2.0 stars

    "a few nice concepts, but does not work well, or train"

    August 11, 2011  |   By cnetsinging

    Version: CANTA 1.11

    Pros

    It's FREE
    import and play midi file while singing

    Cons

    It does not work very well and has trouble dropping pitches on low end and high end gear.
    Can't scroll back to previous notes - only zoom out, which obscures results.
    No Support
    Screen is far too small.
    Doesn't run on Mac or Windows7

    Summary

    The product has good initial concepts, for someone who does not understand the basics of vocal pedagogy, as it completely misses the mark of what is needed to train a vocalist to sing on pitch. Singing along with the melody of a song does not train the singer at all. It's like saying to a singer, "here's a lollipop" feel better? - all singers want to jump in and start singing, but doing so only reinforces their existing bad habits.
    It's a fun toy but has limited value.
    It's free, so why not play around with it for awhile?

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