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GarageBand - what do you think? Good results?

Discussion in 'Recording Gear and Equipment [BG]' started by foq1978, Jan 12, 2012.


  1. foq1978

    foq1978

    Aug 7, 2009
    Rio de Janeiro
    I've been thinking of upgrading my GarageBand so I can use it as my main DAW.

    Yes, I know.

    I would love to dive into Logic or Reaper -- and I will miss my VSTs -- but I don't have time to use complicated DAWs no more.

    I've been using their iPod version as a "notebook", so it makes sense to take them to the desktop version afterwards.

    I think using GB will make me focus more on composing / recording than tweaking / producing.

    And it's so cheap!

    Anyway, did any of you achieve good recording results with garageband?

    Thanks a lot.
     
  2. BassBob1

    BassBob1

    Dec 21, 2010
    I know its not the best but the recording in sig was done with garage band. I really don't know very much about recording and all that goes along with it but I think if you have decent mics, and have a decent room (my recording was done in an unfinished basement so not the best room), and all that stuff GB should be fine. For the purposes you explained it should be fine. I pretty much use it for learning to capture sound better and for something to record ideas and just for fun really.
     
  3. foq1978

    foq1978

    Aug 7, 2009
    Rio de Janeiro
    Thanks for the pointers, BassBob1 !
    I like your track. Maybe not the best mix / master in the world, but it gets the job done!

    Was this track of yours also made with GB? It sounds more polished:


    Agaim, thanks a lot!

    PS: unfinished basements are the best room for recording :)
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 16, 2014
  4. charlie monroe

    charlie monroe Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 14, 2011
    Buffalo, NY
    I was able to do some pretty nice work in GB. Having said that, I am now moving on to Ableton Live for the extra horsepower.

    GB is a very good program for the lite user. Super intuitive and good results can be had with not much effort.
     
  5. foq1978

    foq1978

    Aug 7, 2009
    Rio de Janeiro
    Hello Charlie, thank you for your input.

    Any soundclips / recordings made with GB you could share?

    All the best!
     
  6. I use GarageBand regularly as well as Logic, By the way all my plugins for logic work in GarageBand also so no loss there. I never use any of the loops that garageband offers but i do sometimes use their guitar amps and key instrument samples etc. Works quite well actually. I am by no means a pro with either DAW, but I am able to work fairly straight forward in both. To save money I would definitely recommend trying garageband.
     
  7. foq1978

    foq1978

    Aug 7, 2009
    Rio de Janeiro
    I didn't know you could use vsts with GB.

    Any recordings from you that we could listen to?

    Thanks a lot for your feedback!
     
  8. GB uses AU plugins not VST. Most plugins will come with support for either format. I must admit, you can get some surprisingly good stuff out of GB. Another super simple DAW I recently got my hands on is the new PreSonus Studio One. The Pro version actually has a dedicated Mastering process built in. I've fallen in love with it and find myself preferring to work in it over Pro Tools 9 or Ableton Live 8. just my $.02
     
  9. foq1978

    foq1978

    Aug 7, 2009
    Rio de Janeiro
    Thanks semiprohooker, I will check it out!
     
  10. Jake Saint

    Jake Saint

    Dec 31, 2011
    Mine Hill, NJ
    GarageBand, for the entry level recording tech, is amazing stuff. it's a good few step ups from programs like Audacity, without being as absurdly expensive as something like ProTools. (that said, if you can afford the mac that you need for GB, then why not use that money, build a PC rig, and put a really good program on that, out of curiosity?)

    However, as somebody that's done quite a bit of recording work in the past, i will say this... you can only record as good as your hardware limitations. IE: without really good onboard sound, you won't be able to get it mastered as well as if you spent that extra 200 and purchased a good one.
     
  11. foq1978

    foq1978

    Aug 7, 2009
    Rio de Janeiro
    I've read something similar before, but I'm not sure I understand: will audio interfaces (like my zoom bass pedal) give me that extra quality? If not, would a better DAW like Logic do that job?

    Anyway, I am kind of accepting I am an amateur musician, for better and worse, and trying not to waste time getting semi-pro results using my laptop. It's probably better to focus on getting a reasonably good demo done.

    Thanks a lot for your help!
     
  12. BassBob1

    BassBob1

    Dec 21, 2010
    Yupp that is also mine and so is the new one in my sig. As i've said, I really don't know what I'm doing especially as far as the mixing and mastering goes. I just kind or wing it. With that said I don't see any reason why someone with some more recording knowledge couldn't get a great result from garageband.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 16, 2014
  13. foq1978

    foq1978

    Aug 7, 2009
    Rio de Janeiro
    Sounds great. I think I'd be happy with that quality level for my recordings.

    PS: was "Melissa" in your soundcloud account also recorded with GB? Sounds a bit different...
     
  14. foq1978

    foq1978

    Aug 7, 2009
    Rio de Janeiro
  15. BassBob1

    BassBob1

    Dec 21, 2010
    yeah that was also done with garageband. It sounds different probably because I did somethings differently, sounds a little more "airy" I think. There are 2 drum tracks, one left and one right, as I was trying to cop the Allman Brothers feel. The acoustic tracks are an acoustic and a resonator panned mostly left and the other mostly right. There are some vocal harmonies with more reverb on all the vocals. There's the organ which is one of the software instruments. And I probably mixed it a little different too. I haven't found one set way of doing the mixing/mastering that I really stick to. I'm still working on that.
     
  16. Tom_RCJ

    Tom_RCJ

    Jan 4, 2010
    Cardinal, Ontario, Canada
    Band is sponsored by Trinity Amps and Sennheiser.
    There's plenty of interfaces that'll get the job done, Mackie and Apogee being my personal favourites. If all you intend on recording is bass or electric guitar I'd suggest the Apogee Jam which goes for about 100$ and was designed specifically for Macs as far as I can tell.

    If you want 2 inputs you could go with the Apogee One or Duet, but those a considerably more expensive and I've read reviews criticizing the fragility of the cable on those models. So for 2 chanels I'd go with the Mackie Blackjack from their Onyx series. This goes for about 150$ give or take. We're currently using the 16 channel 1640i from the same series and it's as good as it gets without spending more than you would on a new car. Our only complaint about the 1640i is the lack of motorized buses, but that's not that big a deal, we're getting a small controller with a motorized bus for automations and such.

    As stated earlier there are others, but those are my personal suggestions based on personal experience and knowledge. These will get the job done for reasonable money with commendable quality. Now if you want to get into using rack preamps for even better sound, I think it would be best to either save a few grand and buy something you'd see in a major studio (which often means nothing with "pro" in the name) or don't bother at all. You could grab an A.R.T. or a Behringer or even a Neve Portico for cheap, but preamps are really only worth it if you get the golden stuff, meaning 1000$ to upwards of 4000$ for a single channel, but at the very least those usually have good re-sell value down the line. If it's just for demos you'll get all the tone and effects you'll need in the DAW. Besides, the two interfaces I named already have decent preamps and great digital conversion.
     
  17. Correct. I put the original MP3 into Garageband and recorded a separate bass track. Cut the bass EQ on the original MP3 so you could hear my bass playing more, and that's what came out. Sounds pretty good, but I feel as if there is a little bit too much bass in the mix.
     
  18. foq1978

    foq1978

    Aug 7, 2009
    Rio de Janeiro
    Looks like a great interface for iPhone / iPad. But I guess my B2.1u would give me at least the same results:

    B2.1u | ZOOM

    Thanks for your help!
     
  19. Jake Saint

    Jake Saint

    Dec 31, 2011
    Mine Hill, NJ
    i'm actually referring to your computer hardware. depending upon what version of a mac laptop you have, the soundcard might not be up to the task, etc. some of that can be fixed with peripherals, but by far the best way is with a USB external soundcard.
     

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