GarageBand: Least Intelligent Software Ever?

Discussion in 'Digital Audio' started by Demosthenes X, Oct 28, 2008.

  1. Demosthenes X macrumors 68000

    Demosthenes X

    Oct 21, 2008
    I just spent about an hour on a process that by all rights should have taken five minutes. I'm not sure if I'm doing something wrong, or if this is just an idiosyncrasy of GarageBand.

    I'm making custom ring tones for my iPhone, so that it will announce the name of who is calling. I assembled a "ringing" sound effect, and then used Terminal to generate an .AIFF of the caller's name.

    When I drag the AIFF into GarageBand, it speeds it up. If I play the file in iTunes, it plays normally, but in GB, it's sped up by 2-3X.

    As a work around, I discovered that I could convert the file to .m4a in iTunes, and then drag it into iTunes, and it would sound normal. Great.

    Then I ran into another problem: GarageBand wouldn't "see" the new file.

    For example, let's say I made a ringtone that rings once, then says "John Smith is calling". I use Terminal to create a file called "Output.AIFF", import to iTunes, convert to .m4a, and drag it into my GB track. Export to disk, convert to .m4r.

    Now I want to make one that says "Grandma is calling". Once again, go into Terminal, create a new "Output.aiff" file, import into iTunes, convert.

    When I drag the new file into GB, though, it still plays the OLD "John Smith" recording. No matter what I do, I can't seem to make it change. I've deleted every instance of the "John Smith" recording, and yet GB is still finding it and using it somehow, even when I drag a new "Output.m4a" into it...

    If I change the name of "Output.aiff" each time, it works fine, but it's a pain in the ass, and I feel like I shouldn't have to. GB is just behaving really stupidly...

    More of a rant than anything, I made the important ringtones, but if anyone has a solution I'd love to hear it so I can make more. It's just a long process right now, and I know it shouldn't be.

    I'm using GB 3.0.4, FWIW. :/
  2. Luap macrumors 65816


    Jul 5, 2004
    "Least Intelligent Software Ever?"

    Hmm, No? With all due respect, it's for music making.. Multitrack recording, mixing. That kind of thing.
    When you use it for what it was designed to do, it's extremely good for a free/bundled app.
    Although im sure it has its uses for editing ringtones, it's not what it was designed to do. I certainly never tried to edit ringtones on it anyway.

    Couldnt you use an audio editing app to do what you need? Or perhaps an app more geared up for iPhone ringtones. Rogue Amoeba make a couple.
    And look for "MakeiPhoneRingtone" here:

    But while im here.. I expect the garagaband/Aiff problem you experienced is a bit/sample rate issue.
  3. butterfly0fdoom macrumors 6502a

    Oct 17, 2007
    Camp Snoopy
    Just record your own voice saying that stuff. And then it won't speed up and everything will be fine.
  4. ashjamben macrumors 6502a

    Oct 28, 2007
    Shanghai, China
    in all fairness to the OP, it is what garageband is for. apple released an update for garageband to allow mac users to make custom ringtones. so cut the guy some slack.
  5. butterfly0fdoom macrumors 6502a

    Oct 17, 2007
    Camp Snoopy
    Not GB3 (which the OP is using).
  6. Killyp macrumors 68040


    Jun 14, 2006
    The 'sped' up thing is due to a sample rate mismatch. Not much can be done about it other than using a piece of software such as QTPro to convert all the files manually (although you could get Automator to do this for you). 44.1 kHz 16bit is the setting used.
  7. Demosthenes X thread starter macrumors 68000

    Demosthenes X

    Oct 21, 2008
    True, GB3 does not include functionality to make ringtones out of the box. But the issues I experienced were not ones that would be restricted to ringtones alone - I imagine anyone trying to import their own loops could run into the exact same problem. The problem where GB continued to reference a deleted file when I imported a new loop was especially troubling.

    A ringtone might be a specific, short type of "music", but if GB is supposed to be able to handle multi-track recording and mixing, then something as simple as a ringtone should be no trouble. The fact that I ran into the sort of problems I did trying to complete such a simple task does not bode well for my perceptions of GB's ability to handle complex tasks...

    Changing the speed of an audio-clip is pretty basic functionality. I'm surprised GB doesn't have it. :confused:
  8. SigmundFraud macrumors member

    Jun 11, 2007
    Single shot

    It might also be speeding up if the sample is imported as a loop, depending on the tempo of the track - it will be trying to fit the sample, as a loop, into a set number of beats. You can set the sample as "Single Shot" or it might be "One Shot" which overcomes this for Samples you just want done at any tempo regardless. I've discovered you can do almost anything with GB so long as you are prepared to spend a lot of time fighting what it wants to do - make music, and make it simply. Have fun.
  9. Let's Sekuhara! macrumors 6502

    Let's Sekuhara!

    Jun 30, 2008
    You don't need QT Pro. You can convert virtually any sample rate to any other sample rate in iTunes. Just look in Preferences. The trick is figuring out what sample rate your iPhone wants. This could require some Googling.

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