GarageBand 10.4.6 review, the best option to emulate a recording studio

GarageBand 10.4.6 review, the best option to emulate a recording studio

Apple’s relationship with music and its creation process has grown stronger in recent years with Apple Music, various models of AirPods and much more. Logic Pro, an established, high-quality, professional-grade environment for audio producers, arrived years ago, but GarageBand has grown steadily.

GarageBand is installed on every new Mac and that might make you think it’s not powerful enough, but don’t be fooled: it’s a software fully capable, ideal for emerging artists and podcasters, as well as those just starting out in music creation or production.

GarageBand 10.4.6 Review for Mac

We’ve tested GarageBand version 10.4.6 on the latest 16-inch MacBook Pro with M1. It’s worth noting that the app takes advantage of the Apple Silicon architecture. In fact, it’s been outperforming it since version 10.4.1.

While there are no features specific to Apple Silicon (we’ve also tested it on a 2019 Intel-based 16-inch MacBook), it’s worth mentioning that it runs very fast and export times are likely to be shorter by a bit. hardware newer. You’ll also likely be able to do more recording and editing without having the laptop plugged in thanks to the improved power efficiency of the M1 chip.

If you haven’t used GarageBand in a while, you’ll be glad to know that those weird wood-paneled instrument icons are really all that’s left of Apple’s scheuomorphic fascination, and at first glance, GarageBand looks a lot like any other audio workstation. digital (DAW). It’s sharp, with ample workspace and plenty of tools.

You can stack up to 256 tracks in a single project, and depending on your setup, you may need hardware additional to record your own instruments. We’ve used a Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 connected via a Thunderbolt dock, a Blue Yeti X microphone, and even the laptop’s own microphone array.

all the hardware it is set when you start a project for the first time. If you unplug something, like output speakers, and plug it back in, GarageBand will default to using the built-in options.

Tracks are displayed with their own waveforms, just like in Logic, and it’s quick and easy to drag things around to make sure they sync up where you want them.

The timeline itself can be zoomed in or out to find those wrong notes or scratches, and cutting and changing segments is as easy as putting the playhead where you want to split things and then adding and removing as you see fit.

At the beginning of each track, you can adjust the volume per instrument, as well as pan between the stereo outputs, while muting or soloing to focus on a track.

If you double-click on the recorded elements, the Smart Editor will appear at the bottom of the screen, which means you can add effects, equalize, transpose and much more. You’ll find a metronome and countdown option at the top, as well as a screen that tracks tempo and key.

All of these items are relatively basic, but are presented in such a way that they are easily accessible to anyone relatively new to this world. GarageBand is that app in which a beginner can add a large number of audio files and have fun moving fragments.

It’s particularly enjoyable to use the drums, with AI-controlled percussionists who can be customized by note, or let them do their thing guided only by the sliders. You can even find templates to help you get started.

GarageBand 10.4.6 Review for Mac

GarageBand 10.4.4 has also added royalty-free sounds from various producers, including Mark Ronson, joining a library that includes a large number of vintage and digital instruments. It is true that you will find more elements in Logic, but what is offered here is amazing considering that it is free.

A big advantage of using Logic over GarageBand is mixing. GarageBand lets you change audio levels through the panel we mentioned earlier, but this is cumbersome without a digital mixer that lets you change volumes on the fly.

Instead, you’ll have to scroll section by section, which can take quite a bit of time. Fortunately, smaller projects, like a podcast or a song accompanied by acoustic guitar, can be exported with the Auto Normalization function.

As you can imagine, Apple has put a lot of emphasis on integrating GarageBand into its ecosystem of hardwareand that means you can get your GarageBand project back on iOS or iPadOS too.

While the interface isn’t as easy to navigate without a mouse, the iPad’s keyboard shortcuts help a lot, and both platforms have the advantage of using a more tactile input process, including “remix sessions” that allow users to tweak songs as they like. Free Woman by Lady Gaga.

You can also directly share your audio on SoundCloud, as well as AirDrop your creations to other devices or even to a friend for further work. Mac users with disc drives can also burn to CD, but for most of us the ability to export to MP3, AIFF, WAV or AAC will be more than enough.

You can also send your creations directly to Apple Music to play or sync with your library.

GarageBand 10.4.6 Review for Mac

For those just starting out on their music journey (or looking to brush up on their knowledge), GarageBand offers a series of guitar and piano tutorials featuring the likes of Fall Out Boy, Death Cab for Cutie, Rush, and John Legend, among others. . Each of them can be downloaded and played at your own pace.

Installation and configuration

Do you want to know how you can get GarageBand on your Mac? GarageBand is available on the Mac App Store, where you can download it for free as part of the software included out of the box when you buy a new computer, such as Pages, Keynote, and Numbers.

From there, when you open GarageBand for the first time, you’ll be prompted to install a sizable library of GarageBand instrument sounds. software. However, you can skip that step if you only want to use it with your own audio or voice, and this will save a lot of space on your hard drive.

GarageBand 10.4.6 Review for Mac

When opening a project without a tool software chosen, a blank timeline appears in which you can work, with the metronome, a countdown, the library, and the Smart Editor open by default.


Between its impressive audio editing suite and extensive sound library, GarageBand is a good first step to making music on the Mac.

Plus, it just keeps getting better with regular free updates, and while Logic Pro offers a number of extras, GarageBand is great for beginners and surprisingly powerful, too.

Add to that an interesting, if short, list of music tutorials that can be downloaded, as well as templates that users can use to get started.

Original article published on Macworld.


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