Sunday, February 18, 2007

No-Brainer Garageband Tricks/Workarounds

->editing the piano roll

Please forgive me if this is old hat for you, but many people I know that use (or at least have) Garageband have no idea that this feature even exists, or they would probably spend twice as much time using it. I'm not quite sure why they don't make this feature more apparent in the help files, but then again, who reads help files? I have no idea where I'd be without this key feature, though. Just hit the apple key when you are in the loop editor mode and edit your MIDI sequences until the cows come home.

->exporting audio files (the real reason for this post)

When I first started using GarageBand I was terribly frustrated with the difficulty (unless you are a Logic user) of getting my creations out of GarageBand and into different software, like Pro Tools, for further work. It seemed that unless I wanted to go to Logic, which I personally don't enjoy working in, I was stuck exporting a lousy mp3 or m4a file. The "send song to iTunes" feature has proved a lifesaver in a few different situations.

All you have to do is a tricky little workaround:

1) open iTunes,
2) open your iTunes Preferences
3) set the importing options to the audio file type and quality of your choice (I use .wav for obvious reasons)
4) use the "Send Song to iTunes" feature in GarageBand and viola, (voila?) your freshly exported, high-quality audio file will appear in your iTunes playlist under some cheesy name like "Justin's Album."
5) import into the audio session of your choice in the software of your choice, to your heart's content! Oh, the self-indulgence of it all... make sure you are aware of where your iTunes files are located on your hard drive, obviously...

I used this method on some of the songs I recorded myself, most notably the synth solo on "When She Sleeps" (can you believe I liked a synth sound I created in GarageBand better than anything I could find on my roommate's Korg Triton?) as well as some of the random Moog-esque filter sweep sounds on "Its Fair."


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