Hey all,

Just wanted some feedback. I've been playing my CBG for a little over 3 months now, and was wondering how folks around here make recordings. More specifically, how folks record to a computer file. Yes, I have a video camera, but I want strictly audio files. I have a Mac computer...and it has Garageband software (I've never used it though). I have a friend in California, and we'd like to do some writing together, so I'd like to send him some files to work with. He's got gobs of equipment, so I'm sure he'll have no issues reading any kind of files.

I'd love to be able to play my CBG directly into my computer, here the sound coming through my computer speakers (Creative), capture the recording, and even be able to manipulate it to clean it up and/or edit things. I think this would be a huge help in composing stuff as well.

So...if you have a computer and some software, tell me all about what you're doing. It should be noted I DO NOT want to go high-end here, as I am still a noob, and I don't want to be bogged down with a huge learning curve to operate things. I want to keep things very simple for now.

I wrote my Sweetwater rep today and he recommended this device:


And I think awhile back he also recommended this thing too:


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Those interfaces look ok. The iRig series gets good reviews, but I have no experience with them. PreSonus AudioBox USB 96 has gotten good reviews also.
I use the free program Audacity for multi-tracking and recording on my PC and I believe there is a Mac version. It works well for basic track editing including noise reduction. I also use Sound Forge software for deep waveform editing and home mastering duties. I have used Garage Band on my iPad and found it challenging to use but seems to have good potential for recording and effects. Maybe it's easier to work with on a Mac. If so, you only need a recording interface.

Yeah, I'm completely in the dark on all of this technology. I work on a Mac, but not with anything to do with music. But I know the Mac interphase inside out. I have not investigated Garageband at all. I see it in my Dock, but have no clue how to operate it yet, or even what it can do for me, period. It's always intimidating diving into something new like this.

I think I have seen some decent beginner tutorials online. You might try Google and see what comes up.

Try this software Mix Pad you can download it here it's free and very good


It's a free recording studio you can record save as and mp3 and you have you file . you can also edit you music and add effects if you want not hard to learn.

Thanks. I'll check it out.

I have used both the iRig mic and the iRig guitar dongle for the last 4-5 years, to record directly into my iPad and Mac, using GarageBand. Nothing could be simpler. You plug the iRig guitar dongle / mic into your computer, iPad or iPhone through the 1/8" jack, plug your git into the 1/4" jack on the dongle, or set up in front of the iRig mic for acoustic recording, open GarageBand, hit Record, then...play!

I have used the iRig mic for guitar, harmonica, vocals, and percussion (including sticking it inside my washing machine, and beating on the top and sides like a drum for a deeep booooommmm).

You can then manipulate the GB soundwave file, add effects, duplicate, cut and paste, run it through different amps, add drum tracks, sync them all up, etc.

You can export GB files, and e-mail them to your friend.

There are plenty of how-to-use-GarageBand training vids on YouTube.

That said, I also use the free program Audacity on the Mac for various post-production tasks after recording. You can deeply edit the wave file on Audacity, but SoundForge does offer additional mastering capabilities.

If you have a video camera, you can export the video into iMovie, or another video editing program, and strip out the audio file. You can also play the vid, and record the audio track into Audacity real time during playback. You need to start the record function in Audacity first, then play the video file. You can get a surprisingly good audio track this way, without mucking around with other external mics, assuming the internal condenser mic on your vid camera is halfway decent (some are, some ain't).

Thanks Ron. Lots of great info there. Much appreciated.

I am assuming that the iRig is much better than the cheaper UM2? I've read that the UM2 can sometimes have issues with background noise. I don't have a Noise Gate or anything like that. Heck, I only have one stomp box (my looper). I'm playing through a Roland Micro Cube GX, and am just utilizing the effects that are available there...and I'm quite happy with the sounds thus far.

Being a noob, and having only been playing for a little over 3 months now, I still make lots of flubs when I play, but I have great intentions, LOL. I'm trying to put together some ideas for an old high school buddy in California. He knows me from my drumming days, and is really happy I'm playing music again. The problem is, when I start recording I flub and have to stop. It would be so nice to be able to fix the flubs digitally and get them over to my friend free of errors. Obviously, I am striving to play error free, but for now...

Don't know why, but whenever I hit the record button I choke...and then play fine when I know I'm not recording. It's like I put pressure on myself to perform perfectly and then I stumble. Drives me crazy.

My pleasure, gents. As far as nerves taking over when hitting that Record button, just because I look comfortable onstage (I am, having been there in one way and another since the age of 4) does not mean I don't seize up at times.

What I've learned that works for me is 1) lots of repetition, to the point I start thinking, "I got this," at which point comes 2) more repetition, after an initial recording attempt, to fix the errors that crept in, to the point that I KNOW I got this, after which comes 3) a second recording attempt, which often results in a 3rd, 4th, and 5th attempt, as I get progressively further down the path, after which comes 4)listening intently and objectively to the previous attempts, identifying minor flubs and things I'd rather do better / differently, to 6) a real, serious,defined attempt at getting the thing down in righteous fashion. It often happens that this attempt succeeds, or gets so close that I'm willing to live with a few warts. The thing I learned from one of my musical heroes, Neil Young, about recording, is to not suck all the tightrope fear and soul out of the recording. Try for "pretty good," the move on to the next one, because Perfection can be achieved with months of tweaking at ProTools...and it'll sound flat, boring, mechanical, and have no Voodoo whatsoever.

In other words, keep doing it, it gets easier, and while the Fear of the Eye of Sauron never completely goes away, it can be used as juice to keep your performance alive and fresh. Understand, when I write an original tune, I usually spend a week of 1-2 hour sessions before I have something coherent. I may record snippets for memory aids, because these things are amazingly evanescent even after a few hours. Then, I spend the next 3 weeks or so writing lyrics, fitting, refitting, putting stuff in, taking it out, switching it around...I once spent a summer painfully inserting drumbeats and cymbals, one at a frickin' time, in GarageBand, to get just the right feel for an instrumental tune I cooked up on a 4-string CBG in about 3 hours over a few days ("O'regan's March"). I vowed never to do that again, because it sucked a lot of my liking of the tine away...took me months to get over it. Learn to embrace your flubs, while all the time trying to reduce them. Even the best have bad days.

I hear ya! Interestingly enough, most of my fave guitar players are "sloppy" guitarists (in some way), so I don't have a problem with "warts".

My problem is I only have 3 months of playing a stringed instrument under my belt, period, so trust me, I'm making alot more mistakes than you, LOL. But I have to admit, I don't think I sound too bad for having played for such a short period of time. I agree though...take the best of your recordings and try to be happy with it. I'm just having problems getting through a tune without 1) hitting the wrong note - badly 2) completely flubbing a chord 3) totally forgetting what I'm doing....those mistakes can be glaringly noticeable, LOL. They bring my playing to a grinding halt. What I am trying to do is mentally tell myself that I did not hit the record button....then again, I've truly done that, and literally let the camera run til it's battery died.

Lately, I have just gotten started using an online drum machine (drumbit). I'm an ex-drummer, so naturally, I hate these things. I don't spend hours painstakingly programming beats and sounds at all. I just start with the kick drum, and pile stuff around it to sound "pleasing". As long as the beat I like is pulsing in the background to complement my snippet I'm happy. It's sometimes surprising to hear some unconventional sounding percussive instruments riding behind me while I play. It's actually been quite fun. I'm finding that I play my snippets at a distinct tempo and can really narrow that down with drumbit. This is also helping my abilities and solidifying my playing.

Yup, thanks from me too, Ron. I'd never heard of (or looked for) that sort of thing.  Now I can take the uke away on business with me and have a play with Garage Band. 

Buy a MP3 Recorder,Preferebly a ROLAND your familiar whit that i read,Record and download to your Computer ,paist, edit and fumble around and Post on the Nation.

i have a realtone cable that i got with the Rocksmith game. but you can also get them on ebay. its a 1/4"jack to USB interface cable for PC not sure if Mac has drivers for it? 

cable works with a few programs and i use it with Guitar Rig 5. took a little bit of googleing to get it to work on my HP tablet PC but its great. Guitar Rig has many many amp sims,speaker sims and effects.


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