February 26, 2010

How to Make MP3 Clip with GarageBand

Below is a rudimentary "How To" on making a recording in GarageBand and converting it to an MP3.

Fire Up Garage Band!

- Start GarageBand
- Select "New Project" from list on left
- highlight "Voice"
- click "Choose" (lower right corner)
- Name the project file (default is "my song") ... write down name in case you need to search for the file later. Note: You'll first be creating a garage band formatted file with the .band extension. Then, you'll compress it into an mp3 file, same name with .mp3 extension.
- Choose where you want it saved
- click on "Create" (Lower Right Corner)... might take a little time


LEFT Panel:
You should see two tracks identified They are labeled one for "Male Basic" voice, one for Female.

Two recording areas run horizonal across the upper part of the screen, with numbers across the top.

RIGHT Panel:
You can make different things pop up here, and make them go away to increase size of Center Panel. Upon starting a new project, you'll see Lots of stuff about "real instrument" or "master track."

Get Rid of Right Panel (this is an ass backward way, but it works):
- Select "Control" at top screen
- Select "Show Loop Browser" (It's an on/off toggle.. it will replace the right panel)
- De-select "Hide loop browser" from "Control" option. Right panel should be gone showing more of the recording area.

Recording Head:
The recording runs left to right. You should see a thin RED Vertical Line. It shows location of recording (playback) head. You can move the Red Line by putting the cursor on the little triangle at the top, holding down the track pad button, and dragging right or left. It's default position when starting a new project is all the way to the left.

Lets Record Something:

The "active track" label is blue. You can change the active track by clicking on the track ... ust to the right of "Male Basic" (if you click on the "male basic" label, it might prompt you to edit that label, so stay to the right). The Male track is probably already blue as a default when you started, but you can switch between it and Female) (up/down arrows also switch between tracks). We'll ignore the female track, tho if you want, you can delete it by highlighting it (make it active), selecting "Track" at the top of the screen, and scrolling down to select "Delete Track." You can also create "duplicate tracks" from the same drop down menu.

Highlight the Male Voice Track (it should be blue):
Talk loudly at your computer... you should see the GREEN volume meter light up a little (pair of horizontal bars). If not, check the volume control horizontal slider on the Track, and the Master Volume slider in the lower right of the screen. (See trouble shooting if you still see no green lighting up... if you're too loud, the green will go into the red area, far right of bar).

+ Record:

Hit the "R" key on the keyboard and start saying something to the computer. The red horizontal line should start moving to the right, and you should see indication of something being recorded.

STOP by hitting the Space Bar.

The recording will look like a purple (or yellow) bar across the top of the recording area.

+ Play back:

Move the record/play head (red line) back to the beginning (far left).
Hit the Space Bar ... it should play what you recorded.
Stop by hitting Space Bar again.

Basic Editing:

Note that if you click anywhere on the page, the purple bar will fade... you've de-selected it. Click on the purple bar and it should take on a darker color... it is now selected.

+ Split the Track:

- Select track (make it dark purple)
- Move the recording/playback/editing head (Red Line) to some position in the recorded purple area.
- Select "Edit" from the top of scree,
- Scroll down to "Split"... it should indicate a split.
- "De-select" recording, by Clicking anywhere on screen ... recorded track should turn light color (light purple).

+ Selecting multiple split pieces:

- For future reference, if you have lots of pieces of a track split up, and want to select several of them, select one, hold the Shift Key, and select others.

+ Delete Part of Recording:

To delete the last half of test recording, select the track to the right of the split (Apple 'T' is a shortcut key combination). It should turn dark purple, while the left part of the track remains light purple. Hit "Delete" and the right part of the track should vanish.

But, the right part of the recording really isn't gone!

+ Stretching Tracks (My term)

We'll make the deleted part of the track come back.
- drag the record/play head out of the way
- move your cursor to the lower right corner of the remaining track ... you should see what looks like a right square bracket, with tiny arrows indicating you're in the proper position < ] >
- hold the keypad button down to select, and drag to the right... you should be able to drag all the way to bring back everything you just deleted.

+ MUTE/Unmute: On each track label (male, female) there are some icons running horizontally. One looks like a speaker... when this is highlighted (blue) the track is muted. This is helpful if you work with more than one track, and also controls which tracks are active when exporting (sharing) the final product... sometimes, tracks have raw material from which you're extracting bits.

Real Recording:

Do a few tests to be sure you get the hang of it, and the volume is reasonable (not too low or way in the red and distorted). Then record your essay. If you make mistakes, don't worry about editing, unless you want to... just add on re-takes along the same track until you have everything recorded... I can edit it to clean it up. Save periodically (see below).


Once you've recorded something you like, go to "File" scroll down to "Save"

Creating a Compressed File to send me by E-mail (Sharing):

The Garage Band files are not compressed in any way, so they tend to be big relative to an MP3 compression format.

+ Clean up Blank Space: To the right of your recording, there's probably some blank recording space.
At the bottom of the screen is a slider that allows you to quickly scroll all the way to the right of the recording area. Go there.
At the top of the screen, among the numbers across the top, you should see a tiny white triangle pointing to the left. Drag that arrow to the left until it is a little way to the right end of your recorded track (purple track)... leave a little dead space.


Once you have what you want, and have saved it.
- Mute the Female Track (just to be safe)... little speaker icon turned blue.
- Select "Share" at the top of the screen
- Scroll down to "Send Song to iTunes"

Don't worry too much about where it will be saved, because you can find it in iTunes in "Most Recent" area.

- If not already selected, CHECK the "Compress" box.
- Select "Compress Using" "MP3 Encoder" option (vs the AAC)... I think AAC is a bit bigger file.
- Select "Audio Setting" select "Custom" & select "Custom" again.
Set the "bit rate" at 64 kbps (this is fairly low quality, but OK for voice and helps ensure a small file for emailing). Select OK.
- Click "Share".... It might take a little time to convert the file format (compress & send to iTunes).

You've Done it! You should now be able to find the file you created in iTunes! In fact, it might actually start playing in iTunes (mine does... I probably need to change a setting so this doesn't happen).

Check new file in iTunes:

Go to iTunes
See "Recently added" under "play lists" you should see the file. If not, search for it.
When you find it in iTunes, highlight it and click both "apple & the 'i' key"... a pop-up screen will give you a summary of the mp3 file, with file size and other info. You can add info to the MP3 file that goes around with it... my Podcast files are MP3 files to which I attach the GDAE Podcast graphic, and other.... you don't need to do this.

Copy the iTunes file of your recording to a Directory using Finder for future attaching to e-mail
(maybe you can attach the file directly from the iTunes, but I've never done that before).

Open Finder and navigate to a directory where you'd like to save a copy of the mp3 file.

Change the Finder & iTunes panel sizes & locations so that you can drag & drop the iTunes file to the Finder directory. Once this is done, you're ready to send me an e-mail and attache the mp3 file to it.


The most likely glitch, if any, is that you need to be sure GarageBand knows you're using the internal mic of your mac, not an external mic. I believe the internal mic is the default, and since you've probably never used an external mic, there should be no problem... but if there is... try below.

Check your microphone to be sure it's set for the internal mic:
- Open System Preferences (Icon=Gears)
- Open "Sound" (under "hardware" section...
- Select "Input" options
- Select "Built-in" (as opposed to

For Your Convenience:




تقنية said...

amazing and simple to understand thanks

Anonymous said...

Thank you! You saved my presentation! Written very well. Thanks for explaining.