Should I consider an upgrade to Logic Pro?

Discussion in 'Recording In Progress' started by catdaddy, Jul 12, 2019.

  1. catdaddy

    catdaddy Tele-Holic

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    I'm relatively new to computer based recording (but not recording in general). Bought my first Mac back in January, and started using Garageband. I'm a singer/songwriter who generally works alone, playing multiple instruments and singing all the vocal parts myself. I've also found the built-in drummer in Garageband to be an easy-to-use and great sounding addition to my recordings. In general, I've been very pleased with the results I've gotten using Garageband, but I'm wondering if I'm missing out on improving my recordings by not upgrading to Logic Pro. What does Logic offer that would make a noticeable difference in the results I'm getting?

    In general I don't utilize midi instruments, loops or any synth generators. My arrangements are usually straight-ahead rock, folk, country and blues genres. So, my question to those of you who have some experience with both Garageband and Logic is whether I should spend the $200 to upgrade to Logic or would I be better off spending that money on something else (such as the Nectar 3 vocal suite) which has a dedicated use for upgrading a specific element in my recording process?

    Any and all opinions and insights are most welcome. Thanks!
     
  2. Whatizitman

    Whatizitman Tele-Afflicted

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    $200 is a lot of dough for something you aren't sure you will need. In reality, you won't know what you'll need until you need it. That's just how recording and production is.

    $200 would be better spent on outboard gear (mics, pres, etc...), IMO.

    My approach is generally to see what I can do with what I have available first, before making any large purchases and/or upgrades. Factor not just cost, but also time for learning curve. Good recordings are not done with expensive pro gear just because it's expensive pro gear. It takes experience and tool knowledge to make a good recording.

    Keep in mind the built-in drummer in Garageband is MIDI and synth generated.

    I don't have mac gear, but I like Garageband for certain things. I definitely DO NOT like it's built in drum sounds. If you are ok with the drum sounds and loops, then good. But to really get decent drum tracks you need to be able to work MIDI and samples. It can all be software based and via built-in MIDI engine nowadays. I think Logic has better support for this. Garageband has a MIDI engine, and a very clumsy MIDI piano roll for editing. But I think you're pretty limited on 3rd party plug-ins to extend it. I could be wrong, though. Something to think about.

    You'll hear this again and again here. But I use Reaper. It's far less than $200, and does everything I want to do. If I were Mac-based I would still consider using Reaper, but I don't know how supported it is.
     
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  3. drumtime

    drumtime Tele-Meister

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    I don't think you'll get better sound from any DAW over any other, but you may find one easier to use than another, which will allow you to tweak your recordings more easily.

    Logic is great - highly regarded and does everything the others do. And $200 is cheap for a top-tier DAW - compare to ProTools, Cubase, or any of the others. You can get App Store gift cards on sale sometimes, and use them to buy Logic for like 15 - 20% off.

    I always found Garageband kinda irritating because I had a hard time finding functions I wanted to use because they're hidden behind the "simple" interface. They are mostly there, though, and if it works for you, it's a really good program that will give you really good results. And Free is the best price of any.

    Reaper is great also, and works fine on the Mac. Also cheap. And probably the most responsive developers in the business. Maybe not as user-friendly as Logic, if you're familiar with GB already.
     
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  4. woodman

    woodman Grand Wazoo @ The Woodshed Gold Supporter

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    It really depends on how serious you want to get with your self-production. Garageband is great for cranking out demos and so forth, and plenty of people have made records with it. But it's labor-intensive and, in many respects, like working in the dark, or at least the shade — but it's designed chiefly for simplicity and ease of use. I too started in GB and loved it, then upgraded ... there was a lot more to love!

    Logic Pro is more complex, deeper-featured, more flexible and generally more powerful. But GB is a perfect training ground for it, as Apple has increasingly incorporated GB-like elements into Logic (to the dismay of a lot of old-timers, who see it as a "dumbing-down"). And at $200, you're getting a premium DAW at a deep discount compared to Pro Tools and the rest of the pack. (There are cheaper or even free DAW alternatives, but generally speaking, you get what you pay for.) ... LPX will take you as far as you can go in your recording career — IOW, you'll never "outgrow" it and have to upgrade yet again to something else.

    The HUGE advantage to Logic is the Mixer window — very much a "Pro" feature. You can instantly eyeball levels, plugin placements, aux buses and so forth. This eliminates a lot of the menu-diving in GB and provides a lot more fine-tune control over your mixing process.

    Screen Shot 2019-07-12 at 9.52.34 AM.png

    It would take to long to call the roll on the rest of the advantages — an impressive stock plugin library, 10 times as many loops as GB if you use them in your composition/arrangements, advanced editing capabilities — too many features to name here, but your best bet would be to google "Logic Pro vs Garageband" for as much detail as you want.

    It wouldn't be a seamless, pain-free transition, but already knowing GB gives you a huge advantage over someone coming into it cold. When I upgraded, it took about a week of floundering around before I figured out what to concentrate on and what to ignore (for the time being, anyway), then it was off to the races. Of course, the ease of transition is directly proportional to the time and effort you put into it. Good luck! :cool:
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2019
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  5. burntfrijoles

    burntfrijoles Poster Extraordinaire

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    Yes.
    Logic gives you more of everything. More built-in plug ins, easier editing, more flexibility, better mastering.
    I find it easier to work in Logic than Garageband. Of course there is a learning curve, but there are plenty of free youtube tutorials and also excellent on-line tutorials for a price.
    I use mine to create backing tracks of my favorite songs. (I have tried songwriting but I'm just not talented enough to pull it off.)
    It's definitely worth the $200 if you do a lot of recording.
    Some folks fear the learning curve. I say embrace it. I was totally intimidated when I started on Logic 8. I have just incrementally increased my knowledge over the years by searching youtube and trial and error. It's actually been a fun ride although frustrating at times. I have generally been able to find an answer on-line when I've been flummoxed by something.
     
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  6. Matthias

    Matthias Tele-Afflicted

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    $200 is a bargain for the feature set Logic has and the quality of its stock plugins. The learning curve from GB is fairly easy and you’ll wonder how you persevered with GB. But if all you want to do is basic demos, GB is more than enough. If you want to teach yourself more advanced techniques, Logic is a good way to go.
     
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  7. Ecadad

    Ecadad Tele-Holic

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    100% worth it in my opinion. I did two years in GarageBand before I upgraded to Logic, and I’m so glad I updated. You can be as simple or pro with it as you want. I love having a toolbox like that available, and for $200 I can’t imagine a piece of gear that would have as many features and benefits as Logic has.
     
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  8. jimilee

    jimilee Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    I’ve been using Logic Pro for about 3 years or so. It sounds a lot cleaner to my ears. The recorded guitar and vocals are more defined. It makes GarageBand sound muddy.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  9. codamedia

    codamedia Friend of Leo's

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    Total difference of opinion here... but I find $200 to be dirt cheap for an upgrade to a world of professional options. It's a great option for MAC users... since 3rd party DAW's with that level of features are double the cost.
     
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  10. Martin R

    Martin R Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    We recorded our first album with GarageBand. Any problems we had were not caused by the software.
    The second album was recorded with GarageBand but mixed with Logic. We recorded with GB because it super simple and quick to set up. The newest version though is about as complicated as Logic. So now we're doing everything in Logic X.

    As for ponying up $200 for Logic...it is cheap, all things considered. Super flexible and not too hard to learn. But go with whatever you're comfortable with. If you had GB in 1980 you would have had the hottest recording studio in the country. What we found is that the most important thing in recording is whatever is in front of the mic.

    If you're a Costco member keep an eye out for sales on Apple gift cards. I think $100 cards were going of $90, so there's a twenty dollar discount.
     
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  11. 24 track

    24 track Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    if you dont mind the deep learning curve with Logic , it has a ton of features that most people dont explore , that are not present in protools , ableton , garage band, or most other daws , keep it simple and to your needs, for now until you are familiar with how a daw is set up and functions, I use protools and logic , but logic is so much deeper than PT ,

    there is a portion of logic called the environment that allow you to build objects that can be automated into the mix for controlling any midi devices you have, few people explore this high powered feature to any degree

    this was published in VI magazine july 07 issue ( now defunct) about a midi set up for Micheal Becker who was a ewi player and his midi controlled set up,

    just to give you a small taste of the power of logic pro this is by no means his entire setup,but a quick snap shot of how he seup his virtual instruments

    Screen shot 2019-07-14 at 7.47.44 AM.png
     
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  12. burntfrijoles

    burntfrijoles Poster Extraordinaire

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    Here are a few of my favorite things in Logic:
    Templates - This makes it easy to begin each new project by allowing you to have as many tracks set up with your favorite settings and routing for bussing and effects returns. It makes each recording session easy and mixdown a snap.

    Editing. I just don’t know how it could be any easier to punch in/out and to precisely edit takes. Gilmour once said that the Money solo was ta composite of the best of multiple takes. He could have done it in minutes with Logic. Precise copy and paste etc.

    Using Piano roll to step input custom drum or software instruments. (I suck at keyboards and drumming)

    Mastering Tools - I can’t master worth a damn but Logic makes it simple with default mastering settings your final mix.

    The Arrangement map. I can lay down a single verse, chorus, bridge and then use the arrangement markers to copy and paste as many of those as I want and arrange them.

    So many simple Key Commands to navigate through he project.

    I can’t even think of the things that have become second nature to me over the years. It has been fun and a challenge to find out about all the features and I have only scratched the surface.

    You just start with the basics and keep adding onto your ability to use different features.

    FWIW, my initial copy of Logic 8 costs $500 if I recall correctly. Pro Tools is even more and I think now is a subscription model, while the current full featured Logic is $200, less than an effect pedal in some cases or, put another way, less than the cost of few nice dinner dates.
     
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  13. omahaaudio

    omahaaudio Friend of Leo's

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    $200 is dirt cheap for the quality of program you get when you buy Logic Pro.
     
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  14. T Prior

    T Prior Poster Extraordinaire

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    investing money into your FUTURE is never a bad thing. How much ? well that just depends on each individual. Having a full featured DAW at your fingertips such as Logic Pro is an investment into your personal time and energy. The money you spend today will be insignificant tomorrow but you will still have the Logic Pro DAW far beyond tomorrow . By the way, you don't have to become an expert overnight. Don't even try. Take your time, use the feature set that you need today, add more down the road . You will never be sorry.

    just do it !
     
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  15. Guitarteach

    Guitarteach Poster Extraordinaire

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    If you have an iPad, the Logic Pro app also works with GB to provide the same mixer interface.
     
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  16. catdaddy

    catdaddy Tele-Holic

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    Thanks everyone for your replies!

    I took the plunge and purchased Logic Pro X last night. Right now I'm downloading the additional content to the sound and loop libraries (like 65 GB worth- wow!). I'm sure I'll be back here asking you guys for help and advice as I dig into it on my next project.
     
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  17. burntfrijoles

    burntfrijoles Poster Extraordinaire

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    Just take it slow and get the basics down. You add to your knowledge bit by bit. It's professional level software with tons of features that can overwhelm you or frustrate you if aren't patient. Youtube is your friend.
    To be honest, I feel like I have two hobbies: my guitar and my recording. I am always finding new features, shortcuts, etc in Logic so it can keep you busy for years. Have fun with it!
     
  18. Martin R

    Martin R Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Say goodbye to life as you know it.
     
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  19. Ecadad

    Ecadad Tele-Holic

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    Don’t get too frustrated if you start off slow or not easily getting what you’re looking for. YouTube and the folks on here are incredibly helpful with how to figure the ins and outs of Logic out!
     
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