Garageband on iPad

Discussion in 'iPad Apps' started by bowserjr1234, Apr 12, 2011.

  1. bowserjr1234 macrumors newbie

    Apr 12, 2011
    I hear its really good!! Does anyone recommend it? :cool:
  2. TomRaz macrumors newbie

    Nov 8, 2009

    I have it on my mac and the Ipad 2. I really like the program and I think it is much easier to use on the Ipad 2
  3. lozpop macrumors 6502

    Mar 6, 2006
    If you have an idea when you're on the road, it's awesome to put it down in minutes on the iPad and then export it to GarageBand on the Mac to fully work on your music.
  4. Merthyrboy macrumors 6502

    Jul 21, 2008
    I really recommend it. Really fun the sampler with friends as well. But it is good if like you have an idea and you want a quick recording.
  5. teleromeo macrumors 65816


    Dec 2, 2006
    kidnapped by aliens
    I installed it as a new iPad user a couple of weeks ago. I'm not a musican and i'm somewhat lost in the controls but it seems like a lot of fun.
    My kids love it anyway although they produce nothing like real songs but rather short tracks and samples. I hope they use their imagination to lift their creations to a higher level.
  6. deadwalrus macrumors regular

    Feb 16, 2011
    It's a fun toy. But it cannot be remotely considered serious music-making software for a number of reasons:

    (1) It is buggy. I've used it a lot, and every couple of hours it will hard crash on me. It's also caused my iPad 2 to completely lock up, necessitating a hard reboot. And it stutters, sometimes badly, with cracking and popping when attempting playback.

    (2) You can't change time signatures. You want to do a waltz tempo in 2/3? Too bad. A ballad in 3/4? Nope. You are stuck with 4/4. Which is pretty damn lame.

    (3) No editing individual note data. You've recorded a drum loop and want to duplicate it but swap out the high hat for the ride ( something that happens in nearly every song)? Too bad, rerecord the whole thing. Want a drum fill right before the end of a 16 bar section? Pretty much impossible. Lame.

    (4) Touch-velocity sucks hard, and there's no way to disable it. It is entirely unpredictable, thus, one out of 3 snare hits will be absurdly loud, while one will be almost inaudible. Or a random piano chord will be absurdly loud. You get the picture. If one could disable touch-velocity, or edit individual note data (see No. 3, above), this would not be an issue. But you can't, so it is.

    (4) No changing or adding chords on smart guitar. Given their affinity for augmentations, that pretty much excludes any Beatles song from ever being created with GB. I wanna hold your hand? Sorry, it has a major 6 and a major 3 chord in the verses, and so it can't be done with GB. And so it goes for 1/2 of all hit songs ever made.

    (5) You can't change keys.

    Don't get me wrong, it's a fun piece of software to putz around on. But these are major limitations that need to be addressed. Until they are, nothing remotely serious can be attempted on GB for iPad.

    There is also a very long review on Ars (which curiously omits the above shortcomings):
  7. skestes macrumors member

    Jul 16, 2007
    3: You can change the velocity range on the keyboard but not the drums, I wish they had enabled this feature for the drums as well.

    4: If you hit the 'wrench' icon at the top right you can change the Key and that changes the chords.

    5: See (4)
  8. TruckdriverSean macrumors 6502a

    Feb 28, 2009
    Texas, US
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/532.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0.5 Mobile/8B117 Safari/6531.22.7)

    As a new iPad2 owner I really like GB. But as noted above, it has it's limitations. First-Gen bugs will probably get squashed in short order. As a drummer though, the lack of timing options and the inability to disable/tweak the touch velocity for drums are the most irritating hurtles for me.

    Still fun and worth the $5 price IMHO.
  9. M-5 macrumors 65816


    Jan 4, 2008
    I almost solely use Garageband to play with the keyboards. I'm actually currently learning a song on it, and then when I have a real piano available I'll practice what I've learned on the real thing.
  10. deadwalrus macrumors regular

    Feb 16, 2011
    (4) Hold Your Hand. Key of G. Goes "G D E B." Well, E major and and B major aren't in the key of G, and so you can't play them. Your argument is invalid.

    (5) I said no key changes. Try making a song with a verse in G major and a bridge in A major and you will see my point.
  11. deadwalrus macrumors regular

    Feb 16, 2011
    I agree. It's fun, and worth $5. The only irritating thing is that 4 out of 5 of my complains would seem quite easy to remedy.
  12. jclardy macrumors 68040


    Oct 6, 2008
    My biggest complaint is the lack of a midi-note editor.

    This would have worked perfectly with the touch interface as I have used it in a few other iPad music apps and it worked quite well there. So basically you have to record your midi notes perfectly or do it all over again which is pretty lame.

    The other thing which i'm hoping they will fix is the velocity sensitivity on the drums. It seems when using the kick and snare the kick will be the right volume, but the snare will be ultra quiet. This could easily be solved by having the velocity sensitivity adjustment that the keyboard has so you can set the minimum velocity of a touched note higher.

    But if you have an iPad it is still a must-have app even with its shortcomings.
  13. nadaclue macrumors member

    Mar 17, 2011
    It's good if you want something that is a "toy", for lack of a better word, to play around with, but for me it became boring really fast. There is just too much you can't do with it. If I wanted to do some blues for example, forget it. No swing eights, no 7 chords, no 12/8 time. I could go on but deadwalrus did a good job with what it is lacking. It's hard for me to be creative with Garageband when it is so limiting.

    I was originally going to buy the Apogee Jam ( a guitar interface) to go along with this, but there is no way I would spend $100 for that interface to use with this app. I can't believe all the glowing 5 star reviews in the app store for this.
  14. Siggen macrumors 6502

    Apr 1, 2011
    Oslo, Norway
    My only regret is that i cant copy songs from my Mac to my iPad 2.
    I cant make a song on my computer, and have it in "raw" format on my iPad and change Guitar effekts and more on the run.

    I have to re record all my songs I wish to copy to my iPad :(

    Any way around this?
  15. sasessiontc macrumors member

    Sep 26, 2009
    It's flat out awesome. GarageBand along with the office apps are what won me over for the iPad 2. It brings awesome entertainment with easy-to-use document creators.

    Also, the ability for me to plug my guitar into it just...well, amazed me.
  16. joemeetsjane macrumors member

    Mar 28, 2011
  17. Gomff macrumors 6502a

    Sep 17, 2009
    No way can it be termed awesome, it's a tech demo / toy that teases the user with what could have been if they'd spent a little more time adding in some more features. Midi note editing is the deal breaker for me. I bought it assuming such basic functionality was a given, but no...the mechanism for making a rhythm is very dumbed down as well.

    The iPad 2 could be a very decent studio in a box if someone would step up and code the software but GB isn't it by a country simply flatters to deceive.
  18. pj13 macrumors member

    Mar 22, 2011
    GarageBand for iPad is a great tool for a musicians toolbox. for 5 bucks i don't think it can be beat.

    there are other more "full-featured" DAW apps available that do more. for 20 bucks you can get a 24 track DAW that does most of what folks are complaining GB doesn't.

    but for less than the price of a good harmonica, it is loaded with great sounds and features.

    i have more than one guitar and more than one keyboard and more than one synth, to do all the things i want to do musically and those cost a lot more than 5 bucks. and i'm not mad that one guitar won't sound like all guitars or do what all guitars can because that one guitar is a one tool in my musical toolbox.

    Garageband for iPad is an awesome 5 dollar tool, could it be even better? yes. does it have to be better to be worth 5 bucks? nope.
  19. Gomff macrumors 6502a

    Sep 17, 2009

    Which app is that?

    Please share, if it does everything that you said it does, I'm very interested.
  20. pj13 macrumors member

    Mar 22, 2011

    it's $10 to start for like 8 tracks then you can upgrade through an in-app store for $10 or $15 more to 24 tracks.

    it has EQ and Compression on each track. i have it, though i have not used it much. the interface is a bit cumbersome for me. also i don't know about MIDI editing, which i know you are interested in.

    and when this is available then any app will be easier to use and more powerful, since the ins and outs would be much easier to deal with. this would make it a real "studio-in-abox."
  21. mrholder macrumors regular

    Jan 3, 2009
    I have it on my iPad 1. I like the autoplay features. I thought there would be more instruments like horns or woodwinds, but I'm sure the file size would skyrocket if they were added. I'd also like a banjo or other stringed instruments. It's a great app for the money. :)
  22. elan123 macrumors 6502

    Jan 26, 2011
  23. deadwalrus macrumors regular

    Feb 16, 2011
    Cool. But I really don't want to turn my iPad into a DAW. I have a DAW, and it's is about 1000 times as powerful as my iPad, with 24 bit 196khz sampling ability, professional-grade studio monitors and pre-amps hooked up to it, etc. A DAW on an iPad is kind of moronic, in my humble opinion, considering that to do anything professional one would need, at a minimum: several mics, pre-amps, mixer, much higher bitrates, higher quality A/D converters, etc. And then of course the iPad is not powerful enough to handle more than a handful of simple effects processors. Many of these things are cost prohibitive for a general purpose computing device. Not to mention that they would destroy the portability when you need to haul them around -- so why not just bring your laptop at that point?

    Anyways. Here's the thing: GB for iPad is close to what it should be -- a highly portable tool for quickly jotting down ideas. Unfortunately, it has some easy-to-remedy flaws that ruin the concept. Adding other time signatures would be trivial, as would adding the ability to turn off touch-velocity. A midi note editor would take a little work, but I am confident it could be done. These things should be fixed.

    That is all.
  24. Gomff macrumors 6502a

    Sep 17, 2009
    No offence meant, but this is no good and is no more use than GB if there's no means of editing notes.

    I suspect it's going to take someone like propellerhead to produce something that meets the requirements of more demanding users. I'm not even talking about professional musicians so much as folks who just like making tunes on their macs / PC's for kicks.

    Again, no offence but smart instruments is utterly pointless for users with a moderate sense of musicianship.....They're reminiscent of the auto accompaniment yamaha and casio keyboards of the 80's and will sound similarly dated in a few years time. I'm looking for an app that allows me to program a rhythm or baseline if it pops in to my head whilst out and about. or that let's me record a keyboard riff and then edit out the kinks afterwards.
  25. deadwalrus macrumors regular

    Feb 16, 2011
    I agree that the "auto" mode of smart instruments is useless: the pre-built basslines and guitar riffs are cheesy and repetitive, etc.

    However, I find the "smart" guitar highly useful as a touch instrument. I mean, it is pretty much like strumming a real guitar. With a little practice you can add a convincing rhythm guitar with any strumming pattern you like. In fact, it is the only midi interface I've used that can actually come out sounding like a guitar.

    Unfortunately, the inability to add my own chords is highly limiting.

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