Logic Express 8 Question

Discussion in 'Digital Audio' started by dansvan9, Sep 22, 2007.

  1. dansvan9 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2007
    #1
    I plan on getting Logic Express 8 soon, but I have a few questions. I've looked around but haven't found some basic information..

    - What is the best way to plug in my guitar and play? In Garageband, I put it through a multi-effects pedal I have, and simply into the audio input. The quality was horrible. Is there a better way to do it?
    - Is buying a keyboard, (MIDI or whatever, I really do not know) essential to making music is Logic Express? Is it similar to Garageband, where there's a musical keyboard built in the program? If one is essential, which one would you recommend (preferably under $100 or just a little over)?

    If you need to know, I have a MacBook, 2.16 ghz, intel core 2 duo, 2 GB RAM...

    Thanks for the help!
     
  2. dansvan9 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 22, 2007
    #2
    Hm, no replies yet. I do have another question, though. If I bought a Jam Pack, would it work in Logic Express, or is it just made for Garageband?

    And, extending my second question; are all the software instruments included in Logic Express controlled by a MIDI keyboard? If not, how do I play something with the desired effects? And, how would I connect it to my computer?

    One more question (Sorry for so many); Are the loops included basically the ones that come with Garageband, or are they of better quality, or completely different?

    Basically, my question is; What do I need to make music effectively in Logic Express?

    I would appreciate any answers, no matter how small! Thanks!
     
  3. beatzfreak macrumors 6502

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    Jan 11, 2006
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    NYC
    #3
    I'll try to answer some of your ???s.

    Personally, I've never used the audio input on any computer with much success.

    Someone else may have suggestions on how to get that option to sound better, but I use a usb audio interface for guitar and vocals.

    I also use a usb keyboard as a controller for midi instruments.

    Google M-Audio, I believe they have some units that are a combination keyboard/audio interface for fairly cheap. They also have separate units that are decent.

    It's really up to you whether you're comfortable with the built in musical key board. I believe there is one in Logic, but I don't have the latest version yet.

    Jam packs work in both logic and Garageband.

    Hope that helps some.
     
  4. dansvan9 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 22, 2007
    #4
    In Garageband, I do like the keyboard built-in, but to play well, my range is kind of limited, and to keep up, it's hard to switch around the parts of the piano that i'm playing on effectively. In other words, my range is highly limited.

    Where can I get a USB audio interface for my guitar? Are they cheap? I don't need anything fancy. I just want to plug my guitar in.

    "Google M-Audio, I believe they have some units that are a combination keyboard/audio interface for fairly cheap. They also have separate units that are decent." --- I looked at some on Musician's Friend -- not sure which one is best (also, on any one of these, could my guitar somehow go through it?):

    http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/MAudio-Keystation-49e-USB-MIDI-Controller-Keyboard?sku=703605
    This one seems to be the best at the cheapest price.

    http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/MAudio-Oxygen8-v2-25Key-Mobile-USB-Controller?sku=706310
    http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/MAudio-Axiom-25-25Key-USB-MIDI-Controller?sku=706313
    And two others I may consider...Would any one of these be good, or do you have another suggestion?

    Thanks for the help!
     
  5. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #5
    look here for interfaces with a Hi-Z or "instrument" input.
     
  6. dansvan9 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 22, 2007
    #6
  7. beatzfreak macrumors 6502

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    #7
  8. dansvan9 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 22, 2007
    #8
    Great, I actually started a little jar of change I'm going to save up until i can buy it, I'm up to about $60. Just $40 more...

    Can anyone help me with my last question... Are the loops included basically the ones that come with Garageband, or are they of better quality, or completely different?
     
  9. ZiggyPastorius macrumors 68040

    ZiggyPastorius

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    Sep 16, 2007
    Location:
    Berklee College of Music
    #9
    I had a similar question, and instead of posting a new thread, I figured this would be a good place for it. I'm going for Logic Studio (The whole box set with everything) when I get my new Macbook in January and was looking at Firewire audio interfaces (as people say those are good/better than USB/whatever) So I'm wondering, as I have no knowledge, really, of the way the Macbook is set up... Is this something that I could use with my new Macbook?

    http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/CME-UF400e-FireWire-Audio-Expansion-Board?sku=709514

    or maybe http://www.musiciansfriend.com/product/PreSonus-INSPIRE-1394-FireWire-Audio-Interface?sku=241483X

    To me, it looks a little too...internal, to be used in the Macbook, but I chose that one because it was the only one I could find below $200 that had Mic., Midi, and 1/4 (for guitar and bass and such) in one unit...So can anyone tell me if that's compatible with the Macbook or do I need to keep looking? If someone could point me in the direction of something that suits my needs (below $200, has mic., midi, and guitar/bass inputs, or guitar/bass and hopefully mic. at the least,) that would work with my new Macbook?

    Thanks.
     
  10. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #10
    and i wish people would stop saying that, because it's a meaningless statement. if you want higher simultaneous channels of conversion, you'll need firewire. but there's nothing inherently better about firewire. i.e. if you need 2 channels, you should examine quality, features and price, *not* what the connection type is, unless you've got to satisfy some other requirement.

    i'll again issue this challenge: someone point me to a USB interface which is unable to support the number of channels it offers. i've yet to hear of anyone running into a problem.
     
  11. ZiggyPastorius macrumors 68040

    ZiggyPastorius

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    #11
    I have no clue what I'm talking about, that's just what people say to me. Do you think you can point me in the direction of any type of audio interface, for any connection port, that can do what I need? It'd be greatly appreciated..
     
  12. dansvan9 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 22, 2007
    #12
    Just to make sure I'm getting everything I need, here's a list of what I plan on getting:

    Apple Logic Express 8
    M-Audio Keystation 49e 49-Note USB MIDI Controller Keyboard
    M-Audio JamLab *For guitar
    Apple Jam Pack: World Music *for loops & instruments in Logic
    Apple Jam Pack: Symphony Orchestra *for loops & instruments in Logic

    One more question: The mic on my mac isn't that great. I have a regular microphone, and I'm able to simply plug it into the audio input. Is there a way to do it to make it better quality?

    Also, Is anyone sure that I'll absolutely need the MIDI Controller Keyboard, or is there one built into the program? That'll save me 100 bucks.
     
  13. aafuss1 macrumors 68000

    aafuss1

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    Location:
    Gold Coast, Australia
    #13
    There's a caps lock keyboard in Logic.

    I bought the Apple Jam Pack: Symphony Orchestra as well:the loops are simply amazing-the sounds are so authentic, it's like having a orchestra at your place.
     
  14. dansvan9 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 22, 2007
    #14
    I may just have to deal with that when I get it. If it really gets that irritating, I'll get the keyboard.

    Thanks everyone for the help!
     
  15. Plumbstone macrumors regular

    Plumbstone

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    Feb 6, 2007
    #15
    Value for money

    If you are going to buy Logic Express and 2 jampacks it pushes you really close to the price of the full Logic Studio. As this includes 5 jam packs, all the soundtrack loops as well as loads more softsynths/plug-ins and extra apps you should really think about going for Logic Studio 8 not express
     
  16. dansvan9 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 22, 2007
    #16

    The only problem is I don't really need everything it comes with. I know everything will add up to the price of just Logic Studio, but it just looks a little more complicated.
     
  17. ZiggyPastorius macrumors 68040

    ZiggyPastorius

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    #17
    I know I didn't start the thread, but does anyone think they can help me..
     
  18. beatzfreak macrumors 6502

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    NYC
    #18

    Zimv20 is right. A usb interface should be fine and within your price range. In fact, if your macbook only has one fire wire port, it would be better to use it for an external hard drive. You're going to need one with an 80gig internal.


    If your macbook will be running Leopard, you might want to wait and see which audio interfaces are going to support it right away.
     
  19. ZiggyPastorius macrumors 68040

    ZiggyPastorius

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    #19
    If they are gonna be standard on Macbooks in January, then it will be. Explain what you mean, though, because I'm stupid :(
     
  20. Cromulent macrumors 603

    Cromulent

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    #20
    He means which audio interfaces that you could potentially buy will be supported by Leopard out of the box.
     
  21. ZiggyPastorius macrumors 68040

    ZiggyPastorius

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    #21
    Oh. How do I know that, exactly? lol
     
  22. Cromulent macrumors 603

    Cromulent

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    #22
    You won't until Leopard is released.
     
  23. dansvan9 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 22, 2007
    #23
    (Sorry for the length)

    Don't know if this'll get noticed, but I'm still thinking of what to get. So, more questions.

    Is the jump from Garageband to Logic Studio too big? I mean, is it much more complicated, and Express is less complicated (so I should stick with that)?

    I'm positive I'm getting the MIDI keyboard, but not so positive about the Jam Packs. If I get the 2 I want, plus the keyboard, everything together would add up to about the price of Studio. There's two problems with Studio for me: The price and the space it takes up. When you install studio, does it let you customize the installation?

    3 more questions (sorry, I just don't want to jump on Studio too quick) -

    1- I have a 2 year old digital 8-track (http://www.activemusician.com/item--EM.MRS-802BCD) that I don't really use anymore, because it's all mono, and it's incredibly complicated to use, even with the guide it came with. It does have a semi-large hard drive, though (I think it says 20 GB on the page but mine is 40). Could I use that as an external hard drive (or something else)? I know there's a way to plug it in via USB, but I don't know where I'd get the cable for that.

    2 (not really a question)- I'm quite inexperienced when it comes to this stuff (music making software). I've had my macbook for over 6 months, and I've used Garageband a ton, and I love it. However, I feel very limited in what I can do (not enough loops, not that great on software instruments). Is Logic Express simply going to give me more customization or a lot more overall (loops, instruments, effects)?

    3- I have a Boss ME-50 multi-effects pedal for my guitar. Is there a way that I can use that with Logic express or studio and have it be in good quality (I've tried it with Garageband and the quality is awful)?

    If you've read everything above, it's basically: Which one is safer to jump to if i feel limited with Garageband; Logic Express or Logic Pro (given my experience/budget/circumstances)?
     
  24. quigleybc macrumors 68030

    quigleybc

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    #24
    I'm sure you have your own specific budget.

    And I can certainly understand wanting to save $.....

    But, I would so spend the extra couple of hundred dollars to get the full Pro version now that it's $500....so worth it. Plus the Logic Studio comes with all the jampacks...that alone was worth over 500 bucks a little under three months ago...
     
  25. dansvan9 thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Sep 22, 2007
    #25
    Is Pro more complicated than Express? I'm just thinking it's a bit too soon to go from Garageband to Pro...
     

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