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Subject: Mac users - Help with GarageBand (or something similar) rss

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Gregory Amstutz
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Looking for a Mac-savvy geek to help me with a problem. I have an old tape cassette music collection that I'd like to convert to digital. I've been told that you can use GarageBand to do the conversion, but I can't seem to make heads or tails of it. It seems that it's more set up to make your own music. When you try to start a new project, it gives you the option for either "Electric Guitar", "Keyboards", "Acoustic Instrument", or "Voice".
Which one of those am I supposed to use? There's all sorts of instructional videos, but they're also all geared to making your own music.
There are no tutorials for using external sources. Is there a way to do this with GarageBand, or is there an easier way? I've also looked at Audacity, but that's even more confusing, and less user-friendly.


There's in it for anyone that can help this techno-klutz.

Reply in this forum, or GM me directly.

Thanks in advance.
 
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Paolo Robino
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I googled this:

"Q. Can I record sound from a cassette deck? If so, how?

FA. Absolutely. If you have a Line-In on your computer, all you need is a cable that has a stereo 1/8” plug on one side, and a pair of RCA connectors on the other (Should be easily available in any electronics store. Adaptors will work as well). If your computer doesn’t have a Line-In you’ll need an USB or FireWire Audio Interface.

Assuming you have a Line-In

1. Plug the cassette deck into your Line-In on your Mac

2. Set your System Preferences -> Sound-> Input control panel to Line-In

3. Open GB, Create a New Basic track and hit record

4. There is no 4."

Source: http://www.thegaragedoor.com/tutorials/faq.html

And what if you don't have a line-in? Well, a while ago I searched about audio interfaces, since I wanted to record my bass guitar with Garageband. I found a whole lot of audio interfaces in my online music store of choice, ranging from 50 to 1500 Euros. In the end, I decided not to buy one, for the time being.
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Gregory Amstutz
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Paolo Robino wrote:
I googled this:

"Q. Can I record sound from a cassette deck? If so, how?

FA. Absolutely. If you have a Line-In on your computer, all you need is a cable that has a stereo 1/8” plug on one side, and a pair of RCA connectors on the other (Should be easily available in any electronics store. Adaptors will work as well). If your computer doesn’t have a Line-In you’ll need an USB or FireWire Audio Interface.

Assuming you have a Line-In

1. Plug the cassette deck into your Line-In on your Mac

2. Set your System Preferences -> Sound-> Input control panel to Line-In

3. Open GB, Create a New Basic track and hit record

4. There is no 4."

Source: http://www.thegaragedoor.com/tutorials/faq.html

And what if you don't have a line-in? Well, a while ago I searched about audio interfaces, since I wanted to record my bass guitar with Garageband. I found a whole lot of audio interfaces in my online music store of choice, ranging from 50 to 1500 Euros. In the end, I decided not to buy one, for the time being.


Thanks for responding. Yes, I had found that as well. The problem is that there is no way I can find to go direct from step #2 to Step #3. After you set your preferences, you still have to designate what type of project, as I detailed above. And the option to "create new Basic Track" is grayed out in the menu until such a new project is selected.
 
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Paolo Robino
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dogzard wrote:
Thanks for responding. Yes, I had found that as well. The problem is that there is no way I can find to go direct from step #2 to Step #3. After you set your preferences, you still have to designate what type of project, as I detailed above. And the option to "create new Basic Track" is grayed out in the menu until such a new project is selected.

Hmm, not sure about the problem – maybe we have different versions of Garageband?

Anyway, this is what I would do (sorry for the Italian text: my Garageband is localized):

1. Create a new project:



2. Give it some fancy name:



3. You should end with something like this, except with a keyboard window on it (that you can close, since you don't need it):



4. Create a new track – choose real instrument:



5. You should be fine with basic track, no effect:



6. Connect stuff, set input sound in your preferences, hit record.

As an aside, I must say that I would probably use Audacity for stuff like this. Love Garageband when I put together some loops and call it music, but Audacity is probably better suited for audio editing jobs like this.
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Paolo Robino
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Paolo Robino wrote:
As an aside, I must say that I would probably use Audacity for stuff like this. Love Garageband when I put together some loops and call it music, but Audacity is probably better suited for audio editing jobs like this.

To expand on this: after connecting stuff and setting input sound, on Audacity you should be fine just selecting the sound source and hitting record. After you finished, "save" will create an Audacity project (with the extension .aup). You need to "export" to create an mp3.
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Gregory Amstutz
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I'm actually using GarageBand 5.1, whatever that is, so yours isn't quite like mine. Anyway, your image shows the piano track and the basic track. That was the point of my question, did it matter which project I chose. The answer is apparently No, because I just ignore whatever I chose (in your case, Piano), and just use the basic track I added on.

The trouble with Audacity is that there are no instructions to tell you how to use it. I just wish there was a program that laid it out this easy

1) Connect computer to stereo.
2) Play music
3) hit spacebar to record
4) hit again to stop.
5) Save As .Mp3
6) export to iTunes.

As I said, I'm a techno-klutz.
A roadkill on the Information Superhighway.
An analog man in a digital world.
You know, a moron.shake
 
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Paolo Robino
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dogzard wrote:
I'm actually using GarageBand 5.1, whatever that is, so yours isn't quite like mine. Anyway, your image shows the piano track and the basic track. That was the point of my question, did it matter which project I chose. The answer is apparently No, because I just ignore whatever I chose (in your case, Piano), and just use the basic track I added on.

Yup, it should work like that.

dogzard wrote:
The trouble with Audacity is that there are no instructions to tell you how to use it. I just wish there was a program that laid it out this easy

1) Connect computer to stereo.
2) Play music
3) hit spacebar to record
4) hit again to stop.
5) Save As .Mp3
6) export to iTunes.

Well, I'm not actually sure about 1), but 2) to 6) with Audacity should work just like you said. Except that 5) to 6) you do it on your Mac Finder, just double click on the mp3 and voilà.
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Yah, I would also do this in Audacity.
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