Apple’s digital audio workstation GarageBand is surely user-friendly but that doesn’t mean it is equipped with less features. Musicians always look forward to creating some unique and melodious masterpieces and with the help of GarageBand, it is pretty much possible. Also, mastering the different aspects and learning about all the different features of this software will help you when you switch to GarageBand’s big brother Logic Pro X. Whether you are a beginner or have some experience in the field of music creation, you can create some awesome and good sounding songs with the help of GarageBand. Let’s dive in below to check out the salient features of GarageBand for PC.
Salient Features of GarageBand for PC
A really useful feature that is inside the software is the help menu. Once you click on that menu, the yellow text boxes will be displayed wherever you hover your mouse in the software. A set of tips related to the working of particular functions are offered to make it easier for beginners to learn the different functions.
The drummer loops are basically stored in a loop library. The best part is that you can easily get past the different parts of the track while your project is running and choose the ones you like to be further edited in the Drummer editor.
Got an iOS device? The Logic Remote iOS app can be used to connect with the software running on your Mac on the same network. You can browse through different tracks and can play/record new songs from your iOS device.
Auto Arranging Drummer
A super cool feature of GarageBand is the automatic arrangement. With proper arrangement markers set while starting the project, add a Drummer track that will automatically populate the track arrangement with different regions for each part.
Although there are so many loops pre-loaded in the software, there’s something amazing about creating your own. Simply record and trim the part that you think is a great loop. Save it to the Apple loop library, and it can be accessed easily in another project.
The hidden sampler AUSampler allows you to easily drag the audio files into the sampler to create new instruments. While you create a new software instrument track, you will find AUSampler under Smart Controls options.
The smart feature of this smart panel displays easy access to the functions that you most likely need according to your current instrument. Depending on the instrument or effect you have selected, the smart panel layout will provide you with further assistance.
The colour coding of different regions in GarageBand is based on the type of instrument they contain. Drummer regions are yellow, MIDI regions are green, imported audio regions are brown, and recorded audio regions are blue. If you are looking to adjust the timing and tuning of the imported audio and recorded audio together with the help of Pitch feature and Tempo, then press Ctrl + Alt + G and this will convert all the brown regions to blue ones.
Don’t restrict yourself to a particular key if you only have a single version of that Apple loop. In the Track options, choose Show Transposition Track and you can easily transpose the complete section of your project by plotting the points on a curve. This works well on pitched Apple loops and software instrument tracks.
GarageBand comes with some factory templates which you can use to save a lot of time. Load an appropriate template while starting a new project. You can even create your own customised templates and can save them for future use.
Production on the Go
Let’s say that you start a GarageBand music project on your iOS device and use the Smart Touch instruments to record or mix some tracks, you can easily switch to your Mac or PC by importing your project. Go to FIle -> iCloud Menu and import the project. ALthough, this only happens from your iOS device to a Mac/PC and is not possible to transfer from Mac to iOS because of some compatibility issues.
An in-built tuner comes with GarageBand that can quickly identify the incoming audio signal and displays the pitch on the screen so that you can see whether your musical instrument is tuned or not before you start the recording.
Multi Track Recording
With the help of a multichannel audio interface connected, you can record your audio along with multiple instruments on the same track. From the Smart Controls panel, you can go to the header of each track and can select the input channel in the Recording settings tab. Now simply click Alt + T on your keyboard to set the options in track headers. Check the Record Enable option for all the tracks to record multiple tracks simultaneously.
Making sure that your tracks are loud enough is managed by this feature. Check the Auto Normalize option, and the tracks will be exported at maximum loudness when you record and mix them.
While editing and mixing the tracks, you can display the master track on your main panel in order to add automation and effects to the master bus. To do so, you can choose the Master Track menu in the Track options. To access the plug-ins, click the Output tab in the Smart Controls panel. To see the automation controls, simply click A on your keyboard and the options/controls will be displayed on the Master Track slot.
GarageBand is an amazing tool and with three new added percussion players to the Drummer section, you can easily open a range of professionally played percussion grooves to add magic to your melodious tracks. You will also find a lot of players in the Library panel of the Drummer section.
For the software instrument tracks, the Smart Controls panel has a special button in the top-right corner. Press this button to turn on the hidden preset based arpeggiator. You can access a big library of preloaded presets as well from the adjacent popup option. Through this, you can edit the octave range, rate, and note order.
So, these were the salient features of GarageBand for PC. You can master these and can really create your own awesome music with ease. Play around with these features and explore many more to make the most out of this software. Good luck creating a melodious track!
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