Garageband

How to Record What You Hear for Mac

Anyone can contribute to Audacity by helping with documentation, translations, user support and by testing the latest code. Audacity is a digital audio editor, not a digital audio workstation like Garageband. It has all the audio tools you'll need: Audacity doesn't have the most intuitive or good-looking user interface, and it comes with a learning curve. This is a real hindrance if you plan on recording background music or a jingle for your podcast. GarageBand is a fully equipped music creation studio inside your Mac — with a complete sound library that includes instruments, presets for guitar and voice, and an incredible selection of session drummers and percussionists.

This means that it's really useful when working with multiple tracks like a remote interview or various segments in an episode. It's very stable and hardly ever crashes - important when you've been editing that 2 hour show all day! GarageBand has a beautiful interface and smaller learning curve than Audacity - it should take you a couple of hours to find your way around.

Configuring your Mac:

It supports MIDI recording, and comes bundled with lots of pre-recorded loops and synths that you can use to make jingles and background music, even without any instruments. Garageband is only available on macOS - it's free, but only if you have a Mac.


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If you have to buy a Mac to use it then it's not really free and stay away! It's also not open source so Apple is in full control of the development and you may have to wait a long time for updates. There is less flexibility with audio manipulation. For example, effects can only be added to entire tracks, not just sections.

There are work-arounds but a simple thing can quickly get convoluted. If you don't have a Mac then the answer is simple - Audacity is simple enough to use, extremely well equipped, and versatile.


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With a bit of patience it is easy to master and will have you producing professional standard episodes in no time. If you are a Mac user then it comes down to preference. Do you prefer versatility and fine-tuning tools, at the expense of usability and appearance? Use Audacity.

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Recording from Multiple Devices on Mac and Windows – Donya Quick's Website

Do you want simple, pick-up-and-play functionality, with a range of pre-loaded sounds and presets? Use Garageband.

To perform the capture, launch QuickTime Player, choose New Audio Recording from the File menu, and in the window that appears, make sure that SoundFlower is selected by clicking on the small triangle. In the Audio area below you have two options—High and Maximum. Both produce an AAC file encoded at kbps.

How to capture your Mac's audio for free

The difference is that High quality records at a resolution of To hear what your Mac is recording, launch Soundflowerbed, which the Soundflower installed places inside the SoundFlower folder now inside your Applications folder. Close the window to name and save it as an audio file. This will save your recording as a kbps AAC file. Chris has covered technology and media since the latter days of the Reagan Administration.