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Garageband vs. Zoom/Tascam Recorders

Discussion in 'Recording In Progress' started by Whoa Tele, Sep 13, 2020.

  1. Whoa Tele

    Whoa Tele Friend of Leo's

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    Hey Kids. I'm in the market for a small portable recorder to use at home to lay down song ideas. I'd also like to use it to record band practices on occasion. Ease of use is my top priority as I'm not tech savvy. Currently im looking at Garage band for IPad or a zoom r8/tascam DS 008EX type unit. If I remember correctly the Zoom and GarageBand have drums but the Tascam does not. However, I'd mainly be using the drums as a metronome for the other tracks. Thanks for any suggestions.
     
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  2. Dave Hicks

    Dave Hicks Friend of Leo's

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    I use a Zoom R8. It does have drum tracks. I can usually find one that fits what I've done/want to do. The R8 also has a metronome, though I haven't figured out how to use it in anything other than 4:4.

    The R8 doesn't make cut and paste easy - I guess they assume you can use a DAW for that (Cubase LE comes with it). That's inconvenient if you want to comp a track.

    D.H.
     
  3. Whoa Tele

    Whoa Tele Friend of Leo's

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    Thanks Dave. Have you ever used GarageBand. I just want the easiest option to flesh out ideas. I don't wanna have to scroll through 5 menus to lay down a gtr. Part.
     
  4. mworthin

    mworthin NEW MEMBER!

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    Garageband is a simple DAW, but it isn't an interface like the Zoom or Tascam. I have a Zoom H6, which you can use as an interface as well as a recorder, and you may be able to record into GB for the iPad using their Camera kit interface.

    The nicest thing about GB is that it is easy to upload to their iCloud, and then pull it into GB or Logic Pro on an Apple computer for other recording/mixing. And it doesn't allow you to adjust ever little parameter, which is a bonus when you are just learning how to use a DAW.
     
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  5. hemingway

    hemingway Poster Extraordinaire

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    I have the Zoom R16 and it does not have drum tracks. Just in case you were looking at that, too.

    It's easy to use for the basic functions. The fancy stuff I don't even try.
     
  6. Ed Driscoll

    Ed Driscoll Tele-Afflicted

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    With the right audio interface connected via the Apple camera adapter, GarageBand is very easy to get started with. Since I've had RME's Fireface UCX for ages in my home office, I've just started experimenting with Garageband to record scratch tracks. (I've been using the Voice Memo program on my iPad for a few years now to record very scratch tracks -- just playing a guitar into the built-in mic.)
     
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  7. tfarny

    tfarny Friend of Leo's

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    It all depends on what you mean by "fleshing out ideas" - I'm basically in the same boat. I had a Tascam 8 track recorder which I didn't enjoy using - the learning curve is not any easier than it is for a computer-based setup, and once you've learned how to use a DAW, you can go pretty deep. I have learned to do "the basics" on Reaper - how to record multiple tracks, use the metronome, add in very basic drum machine tracks, and so on. It wasn't any harder than learning the Tascam. I'm waiting delivery on my ipad to try out garageband and some other ios apps. I would steer you towards the computer DAW options instead of the standalone recorders.
     
  8. Peegoo

    Peegoo Poster Extraordinaire

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    The things you need to record in Garage Band are

    A USB interface. The Behringer UM2 is $50 and has two channels, phantom power, XLR input for mics, and a 1/4" jack for instruments.

    A powered multi-port USB hub. Makes connecting the interface, iPad, and thumb drives or other devices a simple matter. About $15 or so.

    An iPhone/iPad camera adapter. This goes between the USB cable and the i-device. About $10.

    So you'd need to set all that up to record the band. I'd prefer an all-in-one recorder like a Zoom/Tascam unit parked on a tripod high in the room. Much easier to use. Plug it in to power and press the GO button.
     
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  9. jondanger

    jondanger Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    If you’re recording with multiple mics, the Zoom products are great. 8 simultaneous tracks with decent preamps. If I remember right two of them have phantom power. If you want to be able to add effects after recording or automate a bunch of the mixing, Garage Band is way easier for that stuff. The R16/R8/R24 comes with a lite version of Cubase, which is not as user friendly as Garage Band.

    I used to use an R16, and dumped everything into the computer for mixing in Cubase. I switched to a Focusrite Clarett 2Pre and Garage Band a couple years ago, and it has been a lot easier to be productive with the GB set up, despite the limitations of only having 2 simultaneous inputs.
     
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  10. tfarny

    tfarny Friend of Leo's

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    Well, I think Irig is an I/O that plugs directly into an Ipad, right? They make one with a 1/4" instrument level input and another with a single phantom powered XLR in.
    And doesn't the Ipad itself have a basic mic that can be used in Garageband? I assume it does but I don't know so I'm asking.
     
  11. telestratosonic

    telestratosonic Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    I'd go with Garageband.

    I had a Boss BR600. I never did figure it out to the degree that I was comfortable with it.

    Then I discovered Garageband. I gave the BR600 away and don't miss it.

    I use a now-discontinued Steinberg (Yamaha) Cl1 interface. I also have a Mackie ProFX6v3 6-channel mixer with USB which can be used as an interface as well as a mixer.

    Mics - Shure SM57, SM58, and a Rode NT1A condenser mic for vocals and acoustic guitar.

    I have a Macbook Air laptop for use with Garageband. GB is user friendly. Lots of tutorials on YT.
     
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  12. Whoa Tele

    Whoa Tele Friend of Leo's

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    Thanks everyone. I'm leaning towards garageband as it seems to be fairly simple and versatile. I will need a new IPad as I the one I currently wont download the latest version of GarageBand but that's cool as they're not much more expensive than the tascam and zoom options.
     
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  13. Whoa Tele

    Whoa Tele Friend of Leo's

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    Thanks Ed. That's what I've been doing on my current IPad but I'd like the option of adding another guitar and backing vocals.
     
  14. jondanger

    jondanger Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    GarageBand on the iPad is not quite the same as it is on the Mac. I use a MacBook, which is more fully featured. You may want to look into the differences between the iPad and the MacBook. Between a Zoom R16 and an iPad with GarageBand, I’d probably choose a R16, especially if I already had a PC. I’m not sure the mixing would be as easy on an iPad.
     
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  15. Whoa Tele

    Whoa Tele Friend of Leo's

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    Thanks JD. I'm really just looking at 4-6 tracks for home use. If I did record band practices I'd probably just use the external mics on the IPad so the Zoom 16 might be overkill.
     
  16. CupofJoe

    CupofJoe TDPRI Member

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    I’m kind of basic. What I use is a pretty old Olympus micro recorder that uses an SD card but has two mics for stereo. I then put my ideas for chords into Tabledit and play them into my headphones as I record as a metronome. Not very advanced but the cost/time investment is super low for simple idea recording. Once it is solid in my mind I can move on to other devices or share the basics with others. Just takes a lot of the roadblocks out of the initial idea process. No need for high quality at that point.
     
  17. telestratosonic

    telestratosonic Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Agreed. I have an iPad as well but prefer the Macbook for GarageBand.
     
  18. Whoa Tele

    Whoa Tele Friend of Leo's

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    I guess my main question is which of the above units is easiest to use cause I'm not gonna be able to pick up a Mac book but the IPad is within budget. Also if theres anything easier to use than the units I've listed I'm all ears. I really think 6-8 tracks is all I need right now with the ability to record two simultaneous tracks. Thanks for all the help.
     
  19. Guitarteach

    Guitarteach Doctor of Teleocity

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    Ipad and a decent self powered audio interface. Something with 8 inputs would cover a band.

    You can upgrade from GarageBand to Auria for a fuller DAW experience.

    i have a Tascam DP32SD but the iPad experience today is just stellar - esp. when dealing with midi or synths and drums and using apps for songwriting.

    iPad my recommend today. Invest time in that and it delivers more.
     
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  20. ndcaster

    ndcaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    garageband, easy

    there are also lots of looping apps for sketching ideas

    I've used a Focusrite Scarlet 2i for years with no issues
     
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