The Mellotron is a keyboard instrument that uses magnetic tape to play back recordings where each key has one tape. When you press a key, the tape starts and the corresponding pre-recorded note or sound is played back. When you release the key the tape is quickly rewound back to the start point.
Invented in 1950 by the American, Harry Chamberlin, it became popular among recording musicians when it was manufactured in the UK as the "Mellotron" (a hyphenation of "melody-electronics").
Before the introduction of digital samplers, this was the only way for keyboardists to play real instrument sounds like strings, flutes, rhythm ensembles and sound effects from a keyboard instrument.
Few people know about Mellotrons and Chamberlins, but almost everybody has heard the sounds they produce. Among the most well-known tracks are BeatIes "Strawberry Fields Forewer" (flute), Moody Blues "Nights in White Satin" (3 violins), Oasis "Wonderwall" (cello), Radiohead "Exit Music for a Film" (choir), Lana del Rey "Ride" (Chamberlin flute).
This is the only Mellotron app with sounds from the original library. This is the Mellotron XL app, it contains 18 sounds from both the Mellotron and Chamberlin library plus emulations of the characteristics of different Mellotron and Chamberlin models.
We at Mellotron.com have collected, conserved and improved Mellotrons since 1989, and have been making tape Mellotrons since 1999 (the MkVI and MkVII). Please check out our website www.mellotron.com for a more complete history, real hardware instruments, our new digital M4000D Mellotron and M4000D Mini, tapes from the original masters, parts, service and lots of more info.
This instrument supports Audiobus output (Audiobus 2 & 3) and midi input (Audiobus 3 only).
Update with fix for glitchy audio issue that some users have experienced.
Ratings and Reviews
Used to love this app but crashes instantly after recent update. Now useless
Great sound but we'll never get a midi update
I have owned several original Mellotrons in my life including a very rare dual keyboard Mellotron Mark V.
After talking with people involved in the company currently the one thing we all want which is to be able to play this app from a real keyboard via MIDI will never happen because they want us to buy the two digital versions of the Mellotron. Which for me isn't an option now or probably anytime in the near future due to the cost of several thousand dollars. Sure I'd love an M4000 D but since I paid eight bucks for an app that basically is a toy since I can't control it from Midi controller like all my other vintage apps, iMini, iSEM, iProphet, Waldorf Nave I'm very disappointed. i'm still using one of my emu system's digital samplers and the CD ROM of Melachaw and sounds triggering it from a keyboard it would be so convenient to be able to have my Akai Synthstation controller/iPad dock control this app.
I've had this app for a while now, and since I can't (and probably never will) be able to afford a real Mellotron, this is a pretty useful substitute. The key response could be more sensitive. The notes will often be slightly latent. However, I've used it in recordings and have relieved some very positive feedback.
With Family Sharing set up, up to six family members can use this app.