Garage Band 10.3.2 Questions

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billyp
Posts: 18
Joined: December 5th, 2018, 2:12 pm

Post by billyp » December 26th, 2018, 12:22 pm

Hi.

I'm new to Librivox and have been asked to edit my 1-Minute Test by lowering the dB to 89dB and to also record in Mono, not Stereo.

I'm also just getting familiar with the new version of Garage Band (10.3.2) and have run into obstacles completing my editing tasks. The Librivox forum Wikipedia help page for Garage Band only shows steps and screenshots from an earlier version of GB and thus I cannot answer my questions.

Here are my questions:

1) I'm being asked to present my mp3 using a decimal of 89db, but GB 10.3.2 only shows that the range runs from -infiinity dB to +6dB. How do I set the track so that the dB is correct?

2) How can I take an existing recorded track and make sure that it is recording (and recorded) in Mono (other than just seeing a single waveform in the track)? Or is that it the only way to tell?

Thanks!

billyp

annise
LibriVox Admin Team
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Post by annise » December 26th, 2018, 3:49 pm

It's always been difficult to get help from GB users as most people find Audacity better for voice work - it's a while since I tried to get good instructions from users and maybe the newer versions are better, but the recurring reply I got was "Tell them to use Audacity. I started using GB and wished I'd changed earlier"
But hopefully things have changed and it is now possible to save not in stereo, just don't be disappointed if you don't get help, we still want you, and would love to help, we just may not know the answer.

Anne

schrm
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Location: Austria

Post by schrm » December 27th, 2018, 3:09 am

what i answered and saw the last days in 1 minute tests, most people with macs use audacity, too.
some record in gb, and export the file to edit it in audacity - which is a lot of work..

what i saw in the old gb-tutorials, you have to set the correct settings in several places of gb, to get the export dialogue to acceptable results.
in audacity, it's more the other way round, there are just two settings to be made, the rest you can change in the export dialogue.

what i can say, is: apple has wonderful helppages, also regarding garageband.
but i cannot link the english version, as im austrian...
...so, it's all very complicated for me, too.
and last but not least, im not a gb-user, also.
and i have to say it: i would prefer to use audacity and checker, as they both run on this platform.
(im using ubuntu linux and i love to use them...)
schrm
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moniaqua
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Location: Somewhere in the south

Post by moniaqua » December 27th, 2018, 3:36 am

Garageband doesn't seem to be made for such simple recordings as we need for archive/LibriVox :)

For help, you might find something here:
https://support.apple.com/garageband
billyp wrote:
December 26th, 2018, 12:22 pm
2) How can I take an existing recorded track and make sure that it is recording (and recorded) in Mono (other than just seeing a single waveform in the track)? Or is that it the only way to tell?
On my system (Linux, but it shouldn't be too far from the new Mac OS) I can right-click on a file in the filemanager and have a look at the properties. If it has 1 channel, it's mono, if it has 2, probably stereo :)

But Checker is supposed to run on a Mac, too, as it is just a little Java Script and therefore independent from the platform. It tells you all you need - volume, bitrate, sample rate, noise, channels, ...

billyp
Posts: 18
Joined: December 5th, 2018, 2:12 pm

Post by billyp » December 27th, 2018, 7:10 am

Thanks to everybody for the information. This is a very responsive and helpful forum.

After all that's been shared, I'll try Audacity. I've used it before and do find it easy to use.

Thanks again and I'm glad to be working with all of you.

billyp

LikeManyWaters
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Joined: January 15th, 2018, 2:50 pm
Location: AZ

Post by LikeManyWaters » December 29th, 2018, 10:10 pm

Hi billyp,
I've been using GarageBand successfully for several books now and will try to help. :)
I'm using 10.3.2 now. (I just updated and it looks the same).
I'm using macOS High Sierra 10.13.6 on a 2013 MacBookPro using the built-in microphone.
I use my walk-in closet as a "recording studio" for it's echo-absorbing qualities. ;)

Under your Mac's System Preferences; Sound; Input; make sure "use ambient noise reduction" is checked. It sounds so much better.

Basically, you have to combine using iTunes and GarageBand to get a mono file.

First, open iTunes, go to iTunes Preferences...
in "General" tab click "Import Settings..."
Import Using: MP3 Encoder
Setting: Custom
Stereo Bit Rate: 256 kbps (i know, we want mono, but you have to do it this way)
UNcheck: Use Variable Bit Rate Encoding (VBR) Quality: Highest
Sample Rate: 44.100 kHz
Channels: Mono
click OK, click OK, click OK

In GarageBand:
Make sure you have joined all the edited regions of your track.
(command+A selects all regions in a track and command+J joins them together.)
Make sure the track you wish to export is selected and unmuted.
(The track region will be blue with a white border when selected and unmuted.)
Make sure any other tracks are muted.
(I keep multiple chapters in the same file as different tracks and mute them when not working with them.)
Share menu, "Song to iTunes..."
Title: (this should be the final name for your file, i.e. - fromjesttoearnest_01_roe_128kb WITHOUT .mp3 on the end)
Quality: Highest Quality (this should be already the default)
CHECK: "Export cycle area only, or length of selected regions" (important if you keep multiple tracks for chapters)
iTunes will open automatically when export is finished and start playing your file.

Select file in iTunes that was imported.
(Stop it from playing and click on it to select this file. It will be named with your "Title" given in GarageBand.)
go to File, Convert, Create MP3 Version
(iTunes will have created a second file, THIS is the mono file)
Select newly created file, "right click" (ctrl+click) choose Show in Finder...

Now you know where the new MONO file is. It will automatically have the .mp3 extension added.
I move mine to a separate LibriVox folder on my desktop.
Then, i delete the file imported into iTunes (as it is a .m4a file and not useable by LibriVox) to keep iTunes uncluttered.

To check if the mp3 is indeed correct, select it and "control+click" choose Get Info
under More Info: tab it should say Audio channels: 1
You can also run it through Checker to confirm all the other specs too.

Opening GarageBand for the first time:
New Project, choose "Empty Project" (not "Voice" as it adds some effects you don't need)
choose Audio, Input: input 1 (should already be selected)
My instrument is connected with: Built-in Microphone, click "Create"
Double-click Track title ("Audio 1" is default) and re-name as you please (Chapter 01, etc.)

Every time I add a new Track I hide a couple of thing that pop-up:
under "VIEW" I "hide library" "hide smart controls" and "show editor"
At the top, I slide the Master Volume to +2.0 dB (but you may not have to do this, my voice is just quiet).

________________

OH, just saw that you've switched to audacity in your one-minute test thread.
But if you decided to try GB again, maybe this will help. :)
Being a bit of a MacHead, I definitely find GB nice to work with once I got the initial settings right & learned how to do it.
Last edited by LikeManyWaters on December 30th, 2018, 9:45 am, edited 3 times in total.
April
...the sound of His coming was like the sound of many waters... - Ezekiel 43:2

moniaqua
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Location: Somewhere in the south

Post by moniaqua » December 30th, 2018, 2:31 am

LikeManyWaters wrote:
December 29th, 2018, 10:10 pm
But if you decided to try GB again, maybe this will help.
There'll be for sure others to come who use GarageBand, so thank you so much for that help, :clap:

Maybe one of the admins can put that in the wiki? :)

LikeManyWaters
Posts: 471
Joined: January 15th, 2018, 2:50 pm
Location: AZ

Post by LikeManyWaters » December 30th, 2018, 8:51 am

I've just updated to 10.3.2 and it appears to still be just as I described above.

I'm thinking of making a page (googledoc or the like) on how I use GB for LibriVox. If I do, I'll post a link back here... :D
April
...the sound of His coming was like the sound of many waters... - Ezekiel 43:2

Sophoz
Posts: 14
Joined: November 11th, 2018, 1:48 am

Post by Sophoz » January 1st, 2019, 3:49 am

Hi everyone,
I just found out about this forum through an admin, and it was really helpful! I was having some trouble with my GarageBand recording, and this proved to be ultra useful for me~
I do have one small question that I hope maybe one of you could answer. So right now, my audio is too loud, and I want to reduce the volume by about 3 dB. I did reduce it in the Master Volume Slider, but when I import it into iTunes, the volume is still just as loud. Did I reduce the volume in the wrong way? Or is it some other problem?
Thankss :mrgreen:


Sophia

moniaqua
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Location: Somewhere in the south

Post by moniaqua » January 1st, 2019, 6:06 am

Sophoz wrote:
January 1st, 2019, 3:49 am
Did I reduce the volume in the wrong way? Or is it some other problem?
Look if there is some option at exporting or in iTune to normalize or so.

Changing volume with the master usually is already a good idea, but when I export, I do have the option (as well in Audacity as in Ardour) to normalize the file again, so that it is saved with a different volume.

LikeManyWaters
Posts: 471
Joined: January 15th, 2018, 2:50 pm
Location: AZ

Post by LikeManyWaters » January 1st, 2019, 10:56 am

Sophoz wrote:
January 1st, 2019, 3:49 am
Did I reduce the volume in the wrong way? Or is it some other problem?
Under my Mac's System Preferences; Sound; Input, the "Input Volume" slider is exactly half-way. In GarageBand, I have to set my Master Volume slider to +2.0 dB.

What is your system's Input Volume set at? You could possibly slide it a little to the left (decrease it), and maybe that would help in GB.

I know what you're talking about, though. When I export sometimes I have to snatch my earphones out and yell "OW!!!" because it is louder in iTunes than in GB!!! Forgot to turn it down in time!

I have noticed sometimes I have to restart my system if the waveform/sound seems drastically lower than normal, whether due to OS / software updates or hardware issues I don't know.
April
...the sound of His coming was like the sound of many waters... - Ezekiel 43:2

billyp
Posts: 18
Joined: December 5th, 2018, 2:12 pm

Post by billyp » January 4th, 2019, 2:09 pm

Thanks for all the info, LikeManyWaters. I am going to try this again at some point as I'd like to work with GB at times.

billyp

Sophoz
Posts: 14
Joined: November 11th, 2018, 1:48 am

Post by Sophoz » January 23rd, 2019, 8:26 pm

moniaqua wrote:
January 1st, 2019, 6:06 am
Sophoz wrote:
January 1st, 2019, 3:49 am
Did I reduce the volume in the wrong way? Or is it some other problem?
Look if there is some option at exporting or in iTune to normalize or so.

Changing volume with the master usually is already a good idea, but when I export, I do have the option (as well in Audacity as in Ardour) to normalize the file again, so that it is saved with a different volume.
Yes! I found a checkbox for normalization of volume in advanced settings. Thank you so much! :9:

shelleturner
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Joined: January 25th, 2019, 10:57 pm
Location: Washington State

Post by shelleturner » January 26th, 2019, 2:32 pm

I've been following this post closely and have cut and paste the info to refer to when I start recording with Garageband. thanks
UPDATE 1.29.19: Went with Audacity. Much easier with all the help. Nice program.
shelleturner

ElleDeeEsse
Posts: 15
Joined: January 29th, 2019, 8:16 pm
Location: Sydney, Australia

Post by ElleDeeEsse » February 12th, 2019, 9:58 pm

I wonder if any Garageband super-users might be able to help me. I have made three successful recordings so far. Went to use GB just now and although I have not changed anything, for some reason it is not recognising my voice input (not sure quite how to express that). I have tested the inbuilt mic by using the "dictate to text" feature in System preferences and it worked fine so I know my mic is working. What obscure setting am I missing?

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