How to Change Real Instrument Settings in GarageBand in iLife ’11

Before you can kick-start your sensational music mixing using GarageBand in Life '11 you need to know the basics. When recording with GarageBand in iLife, you can choose a Real Instrument and set as many effects as you want before recording into a Real Instrument track. On the other hand, if you’re unsure what type of sound you want, you can record into the track and then add effects and change the sound later (such as choosing a different amplifier or applying a pedal setting).

Follow these steps to choose settings for a Real Instrument track:

Change the setting of a Real Instrument track to Vocals.
Change the setting of a Real Instrument track to Vocals.
  1. Click the Info button (look for the i icon) to open the Info pane for the Real Instrument.

  2. Click Browse to choose instrument types in the left column, and settings in the right column, which affect recording in a Real Instrument track.

  3. At the bottom of the Info pane, set the input source from the Input Source pop-up menu.

  4. Turn the monitor on or off from the Monitor pop-up menu.

    Turn on the monitor to hear yourself as you play your instrument or sing — you also hear the other song tracks as you sing or play. You should use headphones if you’re monitoring a microphone track.

  5. Check and adjust the Recording Level setting, if needed.

    Red dots that appear on the right side of the Master Level meter while recording indicate that the recording volume is too high (technically, the audio input is clipping), and you should drag the Recording Level slider to the left to lower the volume.

  6. To change the effects for the Real Instrument track, click the Edit tab at the top of the Info pane.

    Add another effect to the active effects for a Real Instrument track.
    Add another effect to the active effects for a Real Instrument track.

    Click the rectangle to the left of the icon for the effect to turn it on or off. The order in which the effects appear determines how they work, and you can rearrange the effects modules and thereby change the way they affect the sound, by dragging them up or down in the list.

Before recording, make sure that your instrument or microphone is connected and working. After selecting a Real Instrument type and setting, you can hear immediately the sound and any effects that are set up for the instrument by playing it (or by singing, if your track is for vocals).

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