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GarageBand '11 Essential Training
Illustration by John Hersey

Creating a final mixdown: Exporting a finished song to disk


From:

GarageBand '11 Essential Training

with Todd Howard

Video: Creating a final mixdown: Exporting a finished song to disk

When you feel that everything is in place it's time to create your mixdown or balance of your song. Now I've made a few changes between the last movie and this movie, just a few minor things that I wanted to make sure were in place. For example, I added a little bit of volume automation to the acoustic guitar track, also a little bit more to the dreamy texture track, and I worked on the sound of the vocal a little bit more as well. I've got a couple more automation moments in there as well as some of the effects that I've added. I actually added an Overdrive to kind of give a little more bite and a little more brightness and presence to the overall sound.
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  1. 2m 17s
    1. Welcome
      1m 13s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 4s
  2. 23m 4s
    1. Connecting instruments, MIDI controllers, mics, audio interfaces, and speakers
      4m 24s
    2. Setting important Mac OS X and GarageBand preferences
      4m 32s
    3. Creating a project with tempo, time signature, and key
      4m 37s
    4. Creating a track
      9m 31s
  3. 25m 42s
    1. Exploring Real Instrument tracks and setting a good input level
      6m 20s
    2. Exploring Software Instrument tracks, keyboard velocity, and MIDI
      6m 59s
    3. Exploring Electric Guitar tracks and monitoring
      7m 48s
    4. Positioning the cursor on audio regions to access different tools
      4m 35s
  4. 10m 23s
    1. Choosing a genre in the Project Chooser
      2m 3s
    2. Auditioning players in the band and hiring new players
      8m 20s
  5. 16m 45s
    1. Browsing and filtering the Apple Loops library
      5m 20s
    2. Dragging Apple Loops into your arrangement and choosing from alts
      6m 33s
    3. Jamming along with your composition
      4m 52s
  6. 35m 11s
    1. Setting tempo, enabling count-in and metronome, and dragging in a drum loop
      5m 22s
    2. Using GarageBand as a scratchpad for recording new ideas
      3m 29s
    3. Using the Arrange track to create song form sections
      3m 1s
    4. Splitting Apple Loops and choosing alternates to build a drum part
      6m 36s
    5. Recording multiple takes with cycle record
      4m 32s
    6. Punching in a small section of audio
      6m 20s
    7. Using Groove Matching to tighten up the rhythm of a performance
      5m 51s
  7. 33m 56s
    1. Tuning up and tracking a rhythm electric guitar part
      4m 26s
    2. Customizing the guitar sound using amps, stompboxes, and effects
      11m 44s
    3. Using Flex Time to fix a double-tracked rhythm guitar part
      7m 40s
    4. Using Cycle Record to record multiple takes for soloing
      3m 40s
    5. Compositing a final guitar solo from multiple takes
      6m 26s
  8. 19m 25s
    1. Recording a Software Instrument track
      3m 48s
    2. Editing the parameters of Software Instruments
      8m 44s
    3. Editing MIDI notes in the piano roll editor after the performance
      6m 53s
  9. 14m 12s
    1. Recording lead vocals
      6m 39s
    2. Correcting pitch with automatic tuning
      4m 16s
    3. Reordering, duplicating, and deleting song sections using the Arrangement track
      3m 17s
  10. 1h 7m
    1. Creating successful mixes
      7m 4s
    2. Pre-mixing
      15m 31s
    3. Equalizing tracks
      5m 51s
    4. Compressing tracks
      10m 13s
    5. Adding reverb and echo effects to individual tracks
      6m 39s
    6. Creating automated volume and pan moves
      10m 41s
    7. Freezing tracks to improve system performance
      2m 0s
    8. Using master track effects and automating a fade-out
      3m 31s
    9. Creating a final mixdown: Exporting a finished song to disk
      5m 40s
  11. 12m 51s
    1. Sharing your songs with iTunes and burning CDs
      3m 6s
    2. Opening a GarageBand project in Logic
      4m 26s
    3. Archiving GarageBand project files
      5m 19s
  12. 36m 44s
    1. Taking music lessons
      7m 32s
    2. Creating ringtones
      3m 50s
    3. Creating podcasts
      14m 12s
    4. Scoring a movie
      11m 10s
  13. 53s
    1. Goodbye
      53s

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GarageBand '11 Essential Training
4h 58m Beginner Jul 29, 2011

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

This course is a comprehensive guide to the popular digital audio software from Apple, demonstrating the tools and techniques to create, edit, and publish music and podcasts. Author Todd Howard covers the ins and outs of the application, from interfacing with external devices, exploring Apple Loops, and recording instrument and vocal tracks to creating successful mixes, performing edits, and sharing finished projects. Additionally, the course introduces the new features in GarageBand '11, including Flex Time and Groove Matching, which provide powerful methods for editing and tightening up the rhythmic timing of tracks.

Topics include:
  • Connecting instruments, MIDI controllers, mics, and speakers
  • Creating a project and specifying tempo, time signature, and key
  • Jumpstarting the recording process with Magic GarageBand
  • Recording real instruments, software instruments, and electric guitar tracks
  • Compositing a final track from multiple takes
  • Creating, naming, and organizing song sections using the Arrangement track
  • Equalizing and compressing tracks
  • Adding reverb and echo effects
  • Sharing songs with iTunes and Logic Pro
  • Archiving GarageBand project files
  • Taking guitar and piano lessons
  • Creating podcasts, movies scores, and ringtones
Subject:
Audio + Music
Software:
GarageBand
Author:
Todd Howard

Creating a final mixdown: Exporting a finished song to disk

When you feel that everything is in place it's time to create your mixdown or balance of your song. Now I've made a few changes between the last movie and this movie, just a few minor things that I wanted to make sure were in place. For example, I added a little bit of volume automation to the acoustic guitar track, also a little bit more to the dreamy texture track, and I worked on the sound of the vocal a little bit more as well. I've got a couple more automation moments in there as well as some of the effects that I've added. I actually added an Overdrive to kind of give a little more bite and a little more brightness and presence to the overall sound.

So you can explore those too and check out what I did there. On our master track, however, if I click the Browse tab I would like to add one of GarageBand's preset sort of mastering scenarios if you will. So in this case, I'm going to look under the Rock category since this is a rock tune, and I'm going to go ahead and play from the beginning a little bit of the song and choose a couple of these different ones and settle on the one that I like. You can hear the difference. (Music playing) So they all sort of add a different tonal character, a color sort of to the entire thing. They sort of boost the levels up a little bit and make everything a little bit brighter.

I actually like the Rock Basic Finalizer of these choices best. So I'm going to go ahead and pick that, and if you look in the Edit column you can see actually investigate the ways that the EQ and the Compressor are set for those and take a quick listen. (Music playing) So I'm pretty much ready to go. So as long as you make sure your end marker is right at the end of the song where you want it to be we're ready to create a mixdown. So the Share menu is the road to mixdown and I suggest whenever doing a new mix you use Share > Send Song to iTunes, and then don't compress your song as you send it.

If you click Compress you have the option of AAC or MP3 and setting those settings here, and you can do that if you really need that type of file, but if you're ready to make a mixdown I suggest you get a full resolution file out to iTunes and then manage it from there. You'll always have that copy of it to go back to. So we also want to edit our metadata here and make it a little easier to find in the iTunes library. If you have a lot of songs, it's going to be easier to find. I will call this Playlist GarageBand. I'll leave Artist Name, Todd Howard. You don't need Composer Name I guess.

You can take that out if you want to. And Album Name. Let's go with Essential Training and click Share. GarageBand will create a mixdown based on all of the choices that we've made and save to this file for all of these tracks. The file that will result will be a 16- bit 44.1 kilohertz CD-quality, so-called CD-quality file and that will be able to be burnt directly to CD, or we can convert it to AAC or MP3 for our iPod or anything else that we'd like to do in terms of sending it as an email attachment or anything else.

So here it is in iTunes. (Music playing) Okay, we don't need those to it again. I'm actually going to go ahead and edit the name of the file as well as, since it based it on my project name. I'm actually going to call it by its name, Easier to Find, and we'll go ahead and assign it a generic genre as well. Okay, we'll notice down here in the left column, our Playlist, it's called GarageBand, and this is the song that's there.

My favorite little shortcut in iTunes is to right-click on the name of the file and choose Show in Finder and it will pop up in a window and actually give you access to the file itself. So if you need to back this up to another drive or send it to someone or burn it directly to a CD in the Finder, or using something like Toast, then you have the file right there and you can always press spacebar to demo or quick view any file that you have. (Music playing) [00:04:10.4] I'm going to close that for now, and if I check my iTunes > Preferences, on the General tab under Import Settings we can make sure that our compression settings are as we'd like to convert the file.

So if I wanted to make I'd say an MP3 at 192, I can make those choices here and click OK, so that when I right-click on the file I can say Create MP3 Version. It goes through and makes an MP3 version of the song. If I go back over to my main Music directory, I'll see here's both of them. I'm actually going to right-click up here and show Kind, so I can see that the first file is the AIFF full resolution file that we exported, and here is the MP3.

I can drag that into my iPod playlist or right-click and say Show in Finder and then send that MP3 file in an email or up to a web site or share it on Facebook or whatever it is I'm going to do with that file. And if you'd like to burn this to a CD, choose the playlist that you made, and this could go for any songs that happened to be in your playlist, and then choose from the File menu Burn Playlist to Disc. Go ahead and make your CD burning settings and click Burn and iTunes will ask for a CD and make you a full resolution audio CD copy of it, or if you want to make an MP3 CD you can burn it like that.

And that is how to get your mixdown out of GarageBand, into iTunes, ready to be shared with the world in any fashion you like.

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