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View Full Version : any way to "beef up" garageband?




timseley
Nov 23, 2008, 09:06 AM
Been using garageband (its free!) for a lot of our recording and was curious if there were any good free plugins that would work with it. Or anything else to expand on the basic stuff that's there? Or anyway to skin it, because its got great functionality but looks like a toy.



Patmian212
Nov 30, 2008, 09:39 PM
Been using garageband (its free!) for a lot of our recording and was curious if there were any good free plugins that would work with it. Or anything else to expand on the basic stuff that's there? Or anyway to skin it, because its got great functionality but looks like a toy.

I too would love to know this

synth3tik
Nov 30, 2008, 09:45 PM
Logic Express.

Patmian212
Nov 30, 2008, 09:49 PM
Logic Express.

I find it is a little hard to use, garageband is so simple and fast but also too limited. . . Is logic express the only option? Are plugins not available for GB?

lord patton
Nov 30, 2008, 10:06 PM
I find it is a little hard to use, garageband is so simple and fast but also too limited. . . Is logic express the only option? Are plugins not available for GB?

Yeah, there's some depth there (an understatement) but that's exactly what makes Logic Express "simple and fast."

Well, ok, maybe not simple, but definitely fast. One of the shortcomings of GarageBand that forced me to upgrade was the lack of keyboard shortcuts and sophisticated navigation tools. Off the top of my head, here are common tasks I can do in one key combination in Logic Express:

1) Start the playhead from the beginning of the song, or the current location, or the beginning of the current selection (region).
2) Zoom into any selection I draw with my mouse. And then zoom back out to the full arrange window. Or zoom back to the previous zoom level, whatever it was.
3) Create a fade in/out of arbitrary length and then adjust the curve with another mouse drag/key combo.
4) Open the mixer, loop browser, instrument library, audio bin, score window, audio editor, etc with just a single keystroke.
5) Select any audio region or part thereof, drag it to a new location, and dynamically choose whether this operation will *move* the audio or *duplicate* it. My choice, just by pressing the option key.

Obviously this just scratches the surface. Even if you were uninterested in the effects, synths, automation, and manipulation tools included in Logic Express, the navigation time savers alone are worth the price of entry. It's unbe-frickin-lievable that Apple sells their Prosumer apps (Logic Express, Aperture, Final Cut Express) for 200 clams. Less if you've got access to educational discounts.

Anyway, if you're looking for more power out of GarageBand, Logic Express is the ticket. I found this book very helpful:

booky wook (http://www.amazon.com/Apple-Pro-Training-Logic-Express/dp/0321502922/ref=pd_bbs_sr_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1228104369&sr=8-2)

apsterling
Nov 30, 2008, 10:42 PM
You can skin it by looking in the app's folder, but it'd hardly be worth the effort. Logic Express isn't too hard to learn, and it costs as much as any worthy plugins to Garageband, and comes with a plethora of other plugins for free.

Though, it really depends on what plugins you're looking for to beef up garageband.

Killyp
Dec 1, 2008, 12:54 AM
Logic's pretty simple to get going with. If you're used to Garage Band, you could get to grips with Logic in an afternoon.

FWIW, I would recommend Logic Pro over Logic Express. The increase in price isn't as big as the increase in functionality/flexibility.

timseley
Dec 1, 2008, 09:54 AM
So what I'm hearing is no? I did find a handful of free plugins out there which are decent, but that's about it.

WinterMute
Dec 1, 2008, 02:16 PM
You can use any AU plug-in in GB, but it's a case of buying them tbh.

I always freak my students out by running Altiverb in GB for a laugh.

As for the Logic thing, bite the bullet, it looks harsh but it's excellent once you get a few basics out of the way.

lord patton
Dec 1, 2008, 07:19 PM
Logic's pretty simple to get going with. If you're used to Garage Band, you could get to grips with Logic in an afternoon.

FWIW, I would recommend Logic Pro over Logic Express. The increase in price isn't as big as the increase in functionality/flexibility.

perhaps, but the price to upgrade to Pro from Express is exactly the difference in price of the two products anyway ($300). So there's no downside to just getting Express and seeing if you need more.

InLikeALion
Dec 3, 2008, 01:02 PM
perhaps, but the price to upgrade to Pro from Express is exactly the difference in price of the two products anyway ($300). So there's no downside to just getting Express and seeing if you need more.

That is exactly why I went with Express first. I could get it with my christmas bonus and not have to wait till I had more money set aside for the whole deal. I can work on learning the basics now, and upgrade later when I have the need/money, but with no consequence to total purchase price.