I used to edit podcasts in GarageBand, but switched a few years ago to Apple’s $200 Logic Pro. I don’t use most of Logic’s high-end audio production features, but it’s got a few features that make it much better than GarageBand for my purposes.
- How To Download Podcast Recording From Garageband Mac
- How To Download Podcast Recording From Garageband Free
Feb 16, 2018 In this video, I'll teach you how to record and edit a podcast in Garageband so that you can create a professional sounding podcast episode. Garageband is a software that was primarily built to. Here's the way you can.download Garageband for Windows. for free, this method works on Windows 10 hassle free. Install Garageband for PC using this 2020 guide. Jul 06, 2012 GarageBand is not only a full featured recording studio, a highly capable MIDI synth station, an electronica musician’s dream, or a place to record full songs without a day of music lessons.
However, GarageBand is perfectly suitable for podcast editing, and don’t let anyone tell you different. Every Mac comes with GarageBand, meaning every Mac user has access to a free multitrack audio editor capable of generating high-quality podcasts. And while it’s true that the latest version of GarageBand (version 10) lacks some of the podcast-specific features of GarageBand 6.0.5 and earlier, it’s not true that you can’t edit a podcast in the current version of GarageBand. You can! (Earlier on Six Colors I wrote about editing podcasts in more depth.)
GarageBand 10, in fact, based on the same core set of features as Logic, which means you can take advantage of some plug-ins to make your podcasts sound much better—if you can figure out how to use those features. GarageBand doesn’t make it easy. Let me give you a tour of where these features are and make you some suggestions about how you can use them to make a better podcast in GarageBand 10.
(Please note that while you can use these features for any kind of podcast project, most of the podcasts I produce feature multiple audio tracks—at least one for my microphone and one for a recording from Skype, but often many different microphone tracks from each of my panelists, which they’ve recorded themselves and sent to me.)
Use Smart Controls
GarageBand calls its plug-in interface Smart Controls, and it’s accessible by clicking on the Smart Controls button in the toolbar. It’s on the left side of the toolbar, the icon that’s meant to look like a control dial (but looks a bit more like a quizzical Pac-Man to me). When you click on Smart Controls, the Smart Controls pane opens at the bottom of the screen. By default you’ll see a bunch of dials, because who doesn’t like skeumorphic controls?
Atop the Smart Controls view are two buttons with controls what’s displayed in the space below: Controls and EQ. You can actually set the EQ, which determines what frequencies of sound are emphasized and de-emphasized, in either view. The Controls view also lets you adjust ambience, reverb, and compression—a key concept I’ll come back to in a moment.
This Smart Controls interface isn’t the greatest, so let me explain some of the other buttons you’ll need to use, which are located in the top left corner of the Smart Controls pane. The Information button (the letter
i inside a circle) will slide out a pane on the left side of the Smart Controls pane. (Yes, this is a lot of panes—you will need to make the GarageBand window as big as you can and probably expand the Smart Controls pane by sliding up the divider between it and the main editing area.)
The new left pane displays all of the effects that are being applied to the current track you’ve got selected in the main editing area (you select a track by clicking on the strip on the left side of the editing area), as well as recording settings (useful if you’re recording straight into GarageBand, which most podcasters aren’t). The Plug-ins section is vitally important, because this is where you can stack different effects and make your audio sound different (and ideally, better).
Back to that top left corner of the Smart Controls toolbar. The Master button is also important. When you click it, the entire pane will display the settings not for an individual track, but for your project’s master track. The best way to think of it is that each track has its own set of effects or plug-ins applied to it, and then they’re all mixed together into a single master track which can have effects or plug-ins applied to it, too.
When the Master button is selected (and highlighted in blue), all the effects you select in the Smart Controls window are applied to the master track. When it’s not selected, what you’re seeing are the effects that are being applied to the single track you’ve selected in the main window.
So now we’re oriented. I know, that was ugly, but it had to be done.
Compress your voices
For every podcast I edit, I apply a basic set of plug-ins to make them sound better. Let me show you how to apply my settings within GarageBand and save them as a pre-set so you can apply them quickly without spending time in the ugliness of the Smart Controls pane.
First, we’ll add a compressor. In simple terms, a compressor takes your loudest and quietest sounds and tries to make them similar. Compressing podcast audio can be helpful because sometimes we speak quietly and other times we shout, and compressing a track will make your overall volume more consistent and easier to hear.
Select a track in the editing area and make sure that that Master button is not highlighted in blue. Now click the triangle next to Plug-ins, revealing the plug-ins area in the Smart Controls pane’s left pane. Click in the box to the right of the text “Use to change the sound processing.” This is where you add audio plug-ins. We’ll be adding three.
Depending on your GarageBand settings, Compressor may already be displayed—but not highlighted in blue—meaning that it’s been added but turned off. If that’s the case, move your cursor over the Compressor button to reveal that it’s really three different buttons. The on/off button on the left will let you enable the plug-in by clicking, so do that. Then click the middle button to reveal a floating settings window. (If you don’t see Compressor as an option, click and select Dynamics: Compressor.)
Let’s set Compressor Threshold to -17.0dB, Ratio to 3.1:1, Attack to 9ms, and Gain to 7.0dB. Then click the triangle on the right side of the naming area, which is located at the top of the floating window to the right of the big on/off icon, and choose Save As. Give your compression settings a name, like Podcast Vocals.
These settings are pretty arbitrary; if someone’s really loud, you may want to reduce the Gain setting. You can always save new presets, with names like Podcast Vocals Quiet or even ones tied to particular people, like Podcast Vocals-Jason.
Equalize and gate noise
Our next plug-in is Channel EQ, which may also already be present. (If you need to add it below Compressor, click in the empty space and then choose EQ: Channel EQ.) Move your cursor over the Channel EQ button and click the center button to open a Channel EQ settings window.
Setting a good EQ is a black art, and not one I’m very good at, but it can definitely improve the sound of voices.I would recommend that you click on the triangle in the name window next to the on/off button on the Channel EQ window and, at the very least, try out the Voice > Speaking Voice Improve preset that ships with GarageBand. If EQ is just too confusing, you can also deactivate this plug-in (by clicking that big on/off button or the tiny counterpart you see if you move your cursor over Channel EQ in the plug-ins section.)
Now let’s add a noise gate, which can be useful in hiding background noise when someone’s not speaking. Above the plug-ins section you’ll see a Noise Gate check box and slider that are inactive—for some strange reason, you have to add a Noise Gate plug-in before those controls will work. Click in the plug-ins area below Compressor and Channel EQ and select Dynamics > Noise Gate. Set this to -35dB.
Finally, a lot of GarageBand presets turn on reverb. You don’t want it! It makes everything sound like you’re in an echo chamber. Be sure the Master Reverb and Master Echo sliders are all the way to the left, which means they’re turned off.
Save a preset and set a master compressor
Now that you’ve done all this work, you can save all these settings as a preset so you can easily apply them to all your audio tracks in the future. To do this click on the Library icon at the far left of the main GarageBand toolbar and click the Save button at the bottom of the screen. Give this preset a good name, like Podcast Voice. You’ll see that there’s now a new submenu, User Patches, in the Library. Click on User Patches and you’ll see the preset you just created. If you select another track in your GarageBand project, and then click on that preset, all of the plug-in settings we just created will be applied automatically.
If this is all too complicated, you can download the Podcast.patch file I created. You’ll need to unzip it, then go to the
~/Music/Audio Music Apps/Patches/Audio folder (create it if it isn’t there) and copy it in. When next you open GarageBand, it should appear for you.
There’s just one more thing to do: Apply a compressor to the master track. To do this, click the Master button and make sure the Output button in the center area is selected. You’ll see another set of plug-ins—these are ones that are applied to the final master track, after all your individual tracks are mixed together. I recommend turning on the Compressor plug-in and setting Compressor Threshold to -15.0, Ratio to 2.0:1, Attack to 9.0ms, and Gain to 4dB.
When you’re ready to export your podcast project, use the Share > Export Song to Disk command. I recommend saving an AIFF file and then using a different tool, like iTunes, to compress your podcast as a 64kbps mono file.
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Few things have changed the landscape of audio production like Apple's GarageBand, released in 2005. As a free app included with macOS and iOS, it's been a crucial first step in the burgeoning careers of many future home studio pros (this writer included).
Together with other free sound apps like Audacity, GarageBand has helped fuel the meteoric growth of podcasting by lowering the barrier to entry for recording quality sound.
It's an intuitive and user-friendly app to record, edit, mix, and export podcast episodes with pro-level quality.
If you're a Mac user ready to start a podcast in GarageBand, look no further than this guide!
Note - This tutorial is for the Macbook/iMac version of GarageBand. This process will still work if you like to edit your podcast on an iPad or iPhone, just know that there are fewer editing functions available on the mobile version of GarageBand.
If you can't find GarageBand on your MacBook or iMac, you can download it for free in the App Store.
Step 1 - Set up a template
How To Download Podcast Recording From Garageband Mac
When you first open GarageBand, it will give you the option to create a new GarageBand project either from a Factory Template selection or as an Empty Project. You'll be creating a custom recording template, so choose 'Empty Project.'
Once the main GarageBand window opens, it will prompt you to add your first track from a selection of track types. Choose 'microphone' and select the input your mic is connected to, then tap 'Create.' Your track will appear in the workspace in the upper right (default name 'Audio 1'), next to Garageband's Library section and above the settings for that track. Feel free to close the library section for now. You can verify and, if necessary, edit your microphone input settings under the Recording Settings tab at the bottom.
How robust you make your template is up to you. If your typical setup includes multiple microphones, click the '+' icon at the top left and repeat these steps to create new tracks for each additional channel. Make sure to assign the correct inputs in Recording Settings for each audio track you create. You may also want to go ahead and include tracks for any music or sound effects you regularly use in your episodes. Do the same thing for these, adding an audio microphone track, but set the input to 'None' since you will not be recording to these tracks. If you want to customize further or differentiate your tracks, you can rename them by double-clicking on the track title, and you can even change the track icon by right-clicking on the default blue waveform.
Next, we'll turn our attention to the Transport section at the top. By default the Transport section displays music project information like beats-per-minute, key, time signature, etc. that doesn't apply to podcast recording. To simplify the display, choose 'Time' from the transport dropdown menu. You'll notice the workspace grid switch from beats to timecode. Turn off the metronome and count-in features to the right of the transport display simply by clicking on them – you'll see them gray out.
From here, you'll save your recording template to your desired hard drive location using File > Save As.
Step 2 - Recording in GarageBand
Now that your recording template is set up, it's time to put it to use!
When you open your template, you'll immediately want to 'Save As' a new file so that you don't accidentally change any settings or record audio into the template file. It can be helpful to think through your file organization before you get too many episodes in. Consistent naming conventions and folder structure will simplify your podcasting life.
Now that you've saved your new project let's get started. Depending on whether you're recording solo or with one or more guests, you'll use either a single track or multitrack setup.
Single track recording
If you're recording a solo podcast all you'll need to do is hit the record button in the transport (or use the keyboard shortcut R). Double-check that your mic settings for the track are correct and record a test to make sure your levels are good. If you're too loud or too soft, adjust the input gain on your interface to compensate. You want to be loud enough to hear yourself clearly, but not so loud that the meters are hitting yellow or red territory.
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If you're recording a multi-person podcast you'll likely want to record each person on their own track. This allows for greater flexibility in mixing down the line by keeping each sound source separate.
To add an additional track, click the + symbol in the top left corner. You'll select 'microphone track' again, but this time you'll want to choose the appropriate input for each additional mic (input 2, input 3, etc.). Click 'create.'
With your additional track added, it's a good idea to rename each track by speaker – 'Travis,' 'Rick,' etc. – to avoid any confusion.
By default, GarageBand only records to one track a time. To enable multitrack recording, go to the menu bar and choose Track> Configure Track Header. You can also right-click on any track and choose Configure Track Header or use the keyboard shortcut option+T. In the dialog that opens, tick the box next to 'Record Enable' to toggle it on. This will add the record-enable button to each track.
When you're ready to start, toggle on the record-enable button on each track you want to record. They'll begin flashing, indicating that the tracks are armed. To disarm a track, click the record-enable button again. Any armed tracks will record simultaneously when you press the record button.
Note – if you are unable to arm multiple tracks, double-check your Recording Settings for each and make sure you have selected separate inputs. GarageBand will not record the same input to multiple tracks.
Make sure you have your outline or interview questions handy, take a sip of water, and start recording!
Step 3 - Editing in Garageband
Once your recording is complete, the next step toward finishing your podcast is to edit it. We'll focus on GarageBand-specific tips here, but check out How to Edit a Podcast: The Step-by-Step Guide for a more comprehensive overview of podcast editing.
In addition to simply dragging audio regions around in the workspace, there are a few bread-and-butter tools in GarageBand that will do most of the heavy lifting in your edit. Let's walk through them.
The trim tool allows you to shorten an audio clip by dragging in from the edge (to reveal previously trimmed audio, drag the edge back out). The trim tool in GarageBand appears when you hover your cursor over the lower right edge of an audio region.
An example use case might be that your intro music is longer than you need it to be. Using the trim tool, you can shorten the intro music region to an appropriate length.
Split Regions At Playhead
Another essential editing feature in GarageBand is the Split Regions at Playhead tool, accessible from the menu bar via Edit > Split Regions at Playhead or using the keyboard shortcut Command+T. With this tool, any selected region will split into two separate regions, which can then be independently moved, trimmed, etc.
An excellent time-saving feature to use in conjunction with this is Edit > Delete and Move. Let's say you have a few seconds of an interview that you want to delete from your edit. You could isolate the offending region via Split Regions at Playhead and delete it, then close the resulting gap by dragging everything that follows to the left. Delete and Move performs those two steps at once, both removing the region you don't want and moving the regions that follow automatically.
Once you've trimmed an audio region or used the Split at Playhead tool, the result may be a truncated clip that stops abruptly. GarageBand doesn't have a Fade tool like many other DAWs, so you'll need to use automation to create volume changes.
To access volume automation, use the keyboard shortcut A or from the menu bar choose Mix > Show Automation. GarageBand defaults to show volume automation, but you can also automate many other parameters by selecting from each track's dropdown menu.
With automation visible, click anywhere on a region in the workspace to create an automation node. A bright yellow line will appear, and you can add additional nodes. Drag a node down or up to decrease or increase the volume level for that track at the given moment.
Editing Music in GarageBand
GarageBand is, first and foremost, a music editing software. You can apply each of these techniques to royalty-free music tracks (think Intro and Outro segments) and also create your very own music tracks as well.
You can record real instruments (like a guitar or drum kit) or use one of the virtual instruments that come with GarageBand (like synth, keyboard, or one of the software instruments). Just add a new instrument track for each layer and experiment with creating your very own theme music.
Pro Tip - Apple Loops are prerecorded musical phrases or riffs in the Loop Browser that you can use to easily add drum beats, rhythm parts, and other sounds to a project. These loops contain musical patterns that can be repeated over and over, and can be extended to fill any amount of time.
How To Download Podcast Recording From Garageband Free
We recommend composing any music tracks in a separate GarageBand project so you can focus on dialing in the perfect tune without it being impacted by the other parts of your podcast episode.
Step 4 - Episode Assembly and Mixing in GarageBand
Once you've edited your recorded content to your liking, you'll need to arrange and mix the tracks into a cohesive episode. There is no uniform way to do this, but it's generally a best practice not to put multiple types of audio on the same track. Music, sound effects, and each voice, for example, should be kept on their own tracks.
Arranging Your Tracks
One option to get you started is to arrange your audio tracks chronologically, beginning at the top. In this example, we have an intro clip taken from the interview that starts the episode, followed by theme music on a track just below, then intro narration, then the interview itself, and so on. This arrangement affords a level of visual organization, with audio cascading from top left to bottom right.
Another option is to use one track per audio source so that any track-level effect processing you do (EQ, compression, etc.) only has to be set once. In this setup, the intro clip would be on the same track as the interview, since they're from the same source. Intro and outro narration would be on one track, assuming both segments were taken from the same recording. Intro and outro music could potentially be on the same track if you're not using different processing on them. In addition to track-level effects, this approach can minimize the number of tracks you use in your mix and save vertical real estate in your workspace.
Mixing Your Tracks
At its heart, mixing is simply the process of striking a good balance between the levels of your different tracks. You want to avoid extreme differences in volume as your listeners move from intro music to narration to the interview, etc. We recommend using the voice level of your recording as the baseline for setting other levels – music, sound effects, etc.
In GarageBand, each track has a metered volume slider in the track header. Listen to your episode content and make sure the voice levels are triggering a healthy green on the meter. If they're reaching yellow or red, turn them down accordingly. Next, set any intro or outro music to a level that sounds consistent with the voice level – not significantly louder or softer. Do the same with any sound effects, narration, and so on. Balancing the volume of each track in this way will give you what's called a static mix.
Once you've set your static mix (overall volume for each track), you can leverage the power of automation. Add volume automation to music to dip it under your intro narration or to fade the level out smoothly and gradually. If there are any cuts in your audio that cause a pop or click, you can use the GarageBand automation 'crossfade' trick to eliminate them.
Next, you may want to use audio processing plugins like EQ or compression to shape the tone or dynamic range of your material. Don't go overboard – a 'less is more' approach is recommended in most cases. Make sure that any effects processing doesn't add or subtract volume from your static mix – those levels you liked at the outset are your true north. Some plugins include an output control to raise or lower the volume back to its unprocessed level, but you can also use Garageband's Gain plugin, located under the 'Utility' section of the plugin list.
If you're looking for even more mixing and mastering capabilities, consider upgrading to Logic Pro X, Apple's pro-level audio editing software (available in the app store).
Step 5 - Export your podcast
Before you export your final episode, hit the play button and listen to each segment of the episode to look for any mistakes you might have missed during the editing process. When you're pleased with the mix, the next step is to export it as a single audio file to upload to your podcast host for distribution.
In the menu bar, click Share > Export Song to Disk. A dialog will open where you can name your file, choose a destination for it, and select your export format (wav, mp3, etc.) and file quality. Click 'Export,' and GarageBand will export your mixed file to disk.
It's worth noting that mp3s are a preferred format for podcasting because of their compressed file size. Smaller files = quicker downloads and a better listener experience. However, to ensure the best audio quality, you should still export an uncompressed .wav file. Your host and mastering services like Auphonic will automatically transcode your file to mp3 during their process, so if you're unsure of the ins and outs of file formats, it's best to upload at a higher quality and let them handle it.
With your file exported, go for a cup of coffee or a walk to refresh your ears. Come back when you're ready & listen through the episode for quality control. Once you're satisfied, upload to Auphonic or directly to your host for distribution and wait for the fan mail to hit your inbox.