Griffin iMic + GarageBand

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by jhomayne, Jun 23, 2004.

  1. jhomayne macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2004
    #1
    hi
    sorry if this seems like a stupid question but..

    i intend on purchasing an iBook, but would like to use garageband and i balk at the cost of one of those m-audio preamps.etc. now obviously the ibook doesn't have a line-in and i was wondering if the iMic would bridge the gap?

    :)
     
  2. SilentPanda Moderator emeritus

    SilentPanda

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    The Bamboo Forest
    #2
    If you're just goofing around or want to make something for a friend/family member the iMic works just fine. It you want to make something more exotic you'll have to purchase more expensive stuff.
     
  3. jhomayne thread starter macrumors regular

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    #3
    so what your saying is.. the iMic isnt suitable for serious garageband action?
     
  4. LeeTom macrumors 68000

    LeeTom

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    May 31, 2004
  5. SilentPanda Moderator emeritus

    SilentPanda

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    #5
    The iMic works just fine for Garageband. But as you know you do get what you pay for. I have an iMic and I love it and have no intention of getting anything fancy. But I also have seen some of the higher end stuff and it's a lot better (duh). So for us people that plan on using Garageband as our main source of music making the iMic is a perfect companion. But if you're planning on using Garageband as an "until I can afford something more expensive" then you might want to get some more expensive hardware. That's all. Enjoy using the iMic with Garageband! It's fun!
     
  6. jhomayne thread starter macrumors regular

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    Mar 1, 2004
    #6
    thanks for the input. :cool:

    the thought of forking out extra for the powerbook or for a preamp just to get a line in didn't really appeal to me! ;)
     
  7. Horrortaxi macrumors 68020

    Horrortaxi

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    Los Angeles
    #7
    What do you want to plug into the iMic? If it's guitar or bass you'll need a preamp anyway.

    I have an iMic and it's okay--no better than okay. If you just want to play a quick riff to loop it'll be fine. Longer takes or a need for very high quality sound would make the iMic unsuitable. I've tried to use it to record from albums (remember those black plastic things?) and cassettes and I always get clicks on the recording.
     
  8. xov macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2004
    #8
    I have a related question:

    My daughter wants to plug her guitar into her eMac and record into Garageband. Without a preamp, this doesn't sound so good.

    Could she plug the guitar into her small practice amp, and then go out from the amp's headphone jack into the eMac? Or could that possibly damage the mac's audio input?
     
  9. Horrortaxi macrumors 68020

    Horrortaxi

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    #9
    If the amp has a line out use that, otherwise the headphone jack should work. If you're worried about too much output then put it on low volume (you'll probably have to to avoid clipping anyway). I wouldn't worry about destroying anything on the Mac.
     
  10. Bruce Lee, PhD macrumors member

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    Jun 10, 2004
    #10
    if you're using an electric guitar, you should be able to get decent sound using the amp simulations built in to garage band. you can just plug the guitar into the line in on you mac. set the track for one of the real instrument guitars and it'll sound pretty good. it should sound as good as the headphone out from a practice amp and it'll be more versatile since you can tweak the settings even after recording. if you set the track to 'no effects' it'll sound lousy, but the amp models are alright.
     
  11. jhomayne thread starter macrumors regular

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    #11
    excuse my ignorance but how does plugging one's guitar into a powerbook's line-in work without a preamp?
     
  12. Bruce Lee, PhD macrumors member

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    Jun 10, 2004
    #12
    You plug your guitar cable into a 1/4" -> headphone adapter and then you plug it into the powerbook. Or wasn't that what you meant? :)

    Actually it seems like the "line in" isn't exactly a line in, and must be built to handle a pretty wide range of signals. So even though a guitar's output is considerably weaker than a line-level output, recording still works just fine if you turn up the 'input volume' in sound preferences. Seriously. It sounds more than good enough for messing around with GB, and the amp models probably expect a dry guitar signal anyway.
     
  13. Horrortaxi macrumors 68020

    Horrortaxi

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    #13
    Poorly.
     
  14. jhomayne thread starter macrumors regular

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    Mar 1, 2004
    #14
    ha

    so.. 'guitar -> 1/4" adaptor -> iMic -> iBook'.. would be good enough for messing around with GB

    how would 'guitar -> amp -> line-out -> 1/4" adaptor -> iMic -> iBook' fare?
     
  15. Bruce Lee, PhD macrumors member

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    Jun 10, 2004
    #15
    assuming the iMic does an OK job of bringing a guitar signal up to line level, the difference is basically whether you want to use your amp's preamp to color the sound or not. with the second option, you can use the distortion, eq, whatever, which you have in your amp. with the first option, you'll just be recording dry guitar output, which is nasty sounding, so you'll then want to use GB's built-in amp simulators. if your amp isn't that great, you might find yourself happier with option one. it's basically like using line6 amp farm (though GB's amp simulations don't seem as good and aren't as diverse as amp farm).

    Actually, on second thought, I'd say this. Unless you want the particular sound of your amp, you should try using guitar->iMic->iBook. That way you record dry guitar and you can experiment with different amp models in garageband. This will give you more flexibility in mixing, since you can change levels of distortion, amp types, etc. even once the track has been laid down. Obviously if you have a really nice-sounding amp, you will want to record using it, at least some of the time. But if you've just got a little practice amp of some sort, I'd certainly say avoid it and go right to the iMic. Pros use both setups, fwiw.
     
  16. jhomayne thread starter macrumors regular

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    Mar 1, 2004
    #16
    currently my amp collection consists of one of the mighty 10w variety :rolleyes:

    so i think perhaps the first option will be best

    cheers again for the input
    :)
     
  17. Horrortaxi macrumors 68020

    Horrortaxi

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    #17
    I'm not sure what's changed in the last few months, but I just pluged my guitar into Garage Band naked. Fernandez Revolver Pro to normal patch cable to 1/8" adaptor to line in on my MDD. It actually sounds quite good. The last time I tried that it sounded hissy, weak, and nasty. Maybe I tried with another guitar. The Fernbandez has active pickups so maybe that makes a difference, though I'm not sure why it would.

    I tried with the iMic and got nothing. The device was regognized and set up, but I couldn't get a signal through it. Maybe that was my problem before.

    So I have to retract what I said about needing a preamp for GarageBand. You don't necessarily need one.
     

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