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Octave: An RTA for the iPhone

By Alex Wiltschko

This app is only available on the App Store for iOS devices.


Octave is a real-time spectrum analyzer for the iPhone and iPod Touch that uses time-domain analysis, rather than FFT techniques. Octave follows strict ANSI certifications for sound analysis, found on multi-thousand dollar sound equipment. You can have pro-quality sound analysis on your iOS device for tiny fraction of the cost!

See your sound in detail with up to 1/12th octave bands. Quickly find out peak frequencies with a swipe to access the cursor, and tap-and-hold to freeze the audio with live spectrum averaging (it will turn blue, slow down, and look completely radical).

What's New in Version 1.3

The most requested feature is finished! Tap and hold to get an average spectrum of the sound around you. Real-time averaging!

- Saving average curves (some of the UI is finished, but I'm polishing the rest of the experience — it's not quite perfect).
- Pink noise generation
- Mic calibration


iPhone Screenshot 1
iPhone Screenshot 2
iPhone Screenshot 3
iPad Screenshot 1
iPad Screenshot 2
iPad Screenshot 3

Customer Reviews


I like the ballistics and general screen manipulation via gesturing. I would like to see the ability to specify the dB/division and the range, # of divisions, of the vertical scale. There also seems to be something of a LF deficiency. Below ~100Hz there is little energy displayed even in the presence of ridiculous subwoofer levels. Perhaps this is some byproduct of the sampling rate that is not specified. Actually it'd be nice to be able to select the sample rate/sample size. Perhaps there is some HPF filter in the iOS that needs to be disabled? I'm confident it is not my mic or iPad as other frequency analysis programs indicate the LF appropriately. Other than that mentioned I like the app and look forward to improvements.

Great app, mic calibration would be nice

I use this for FOH purposes. Great app for cheap that saves me tons of time in tech.

I recently bought a measurement mic for my iPad that came with a calibration file. Unfortunately I cannot load it into Octave. I see mic calibration is to be included in the next update- this would be huge for me. I'd also love to see a program SPL meter. I have a different app for that but keeping everything on one screen would be nice.

Anyways, for $5 you can't go wrong here. Great for live sound engineering.

User Support 101

I've used this app for quite some time with great success! As an FOH engineer, it tells me what I need to know better than RTA's far more expensive than this fantastic app.

What seals the deal for me is the support I got directly from the developer. There was a small (and simple) issue I had and he was on top of it immediately! User error, but the dev still helped me through!

10 stars!!!

Octave: An RTA for the iPhone
View in iTunes
This app is designed for both iPhone and iPad
  • $4.99
  • Category: Music
  • Updated:
  • Version: 1.3
  • Size: 2.2 MB
  • Languages: English, Basque, Dutch, French, German, Japanese, Korean, Simplified Chinese, Vietnamese
  • Seller:

Compatibility: Requires iOS 4.3 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.

Customer Ratings

Current Version:
All Versions: