4 Items Your iPad/iPhone Mobile-Recording Rig Needs

By Ryan C. Williams, Mike Levine

Every studio is different, depending on what you need to record. However, if you plan to use your iOS device for recording, there are a few items you will need. All studios share some common tools. Here’s what you’ll need to get your studio together:

  • Your powered iOS device: This option may seem pretty obvious, but your iPhone or iPad does all of the heavy lifting in your recording rig. Make sure that everything you purchase works well with this device (and doesn’t use too much power if you’re recording in the field). Take along a charger or battery power source if you’re recording anything beyond a few seconds of audio.

  • At least one good quality microphone: Nothing sounds good recorded through a bad microphone (unless, of course, you’re trying to get distorted audio, but even then it’s better to start with good audio and make it sound bad later). If you’re recording live performances, take a quality stereo microphone (or two mono microphones for use in recording stereo takes). If you’re recording multiple sources in the field, take at least one mic for every source, if possible (depending on the inputs in your audio interface).

  • Your audio interface: Make sure that whatever you use to send audio to your iOS device can either power your device or doesn’t use too much power. Otherwise, take the device that gives you the inputs you need to record the audio you wish.

  • Headphones: You need to know how the audio sounds coming through your iOS device. Use in-ear headphones or over-the-ear headphones to block out as much external noise as possible.