Apple has revealed it is to support Yamaha’s FireWire-based mLAN technology in Mac OS X.

mLAN technology – based on the Apple-led FireWire standard – enables the high-speed transmission of digital audio and music.

Yamaha is offering developer licenses for its mLAN protocol, which can route digital-audio and control data from one device to another when creating and mastering music.

Yamaha’s mLAN technology is a proprietary treatment of Apple’s FireWire standard serial-bus connection. mLAN hardware and software devices work both individually and together, with other computers or mLAN devices using FireWire ports. Music data can be transferred over the FireWire network.

Apple’s vice president of worldwide developer relations, Clent Richardson, said: "FireWire has been widely adopted by manufacturers producing a range of peripherals, such as digital cameras and large-capacity hard drives that demand the finest quality high-speed data transmission.

"Apple supports this great technology in its upcoming Mac OS X and believes Yamaha's mLAN will be the ideal way to handle audio and music over FireWire."

The mLAN Licensing Program offers developers the right to use the logo, specifications and relevant patents. It also offers developers the chance to access and make use of the standard’s specification. This lets them develop products that comply with the standard.

Access to the program costs $1,800, with an annual renewal fee of $900.

Masatada Wachi, an executive director on Yamaha’s board, said: "We expect this technology to be widely accepted wherever data transmission of digital audio and music is used.

"To generate momentum for mLAN technology, Yamaha is making the mLAN Licensing Program available to all developers of digital-audio hardware and software."

He added: “As mLAN gains momentum, a wide variety of products will become available from manufacturers within many markets to encourage users to migrate to this new generation of high-speed digital audio and MIDI data-transmission over FireWire.

Yamaha is introducing three mLAN products: mLAN-8P, mLAN-8E and CD8-mLAN. mLAN-8P is a stand-alone audio/MIDI interface, which lets conventional audio and MIDI connect to an mLAN system. The mLAN-8E is an mLAN expansion board for mLAN-ready Yamaha synthesizer keyboards and tone generators. The CD8-mLAN is an mLAN expansion board for the widely used Yamaha digital-mixing consoles, 02R and 03D.

Yamaha is negotiating with several manufacturers to provide components that will let licensees build mLAN products for worldwide availability.