Mac audio editing software.
August 4, 2005 5:17 PM   Subscribe

I am looking for a good, cheep/free sound editing program for my Mac. It needs to be able to produce files I can import to apple and adobe's video editing programs. Any suggestions would be great.
posted by iwouldificould to Computers & Internet (13 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Audacity is free. Sound Studio is not free, but is a better option than Audacity, with an easier interface.
posted by Rothko at 5:21 PM on August 4, 2005

Audacity is the usual suggestion. It's free.
posted by xil at 5:21 PM on August 4, 2005

For $30, you can't beat Amadeus, an often overlooked gem written by Martin Hairer that is regularly updated. It supports a huge range of formats, includes effective noise reduction algorithms, and even has pretty cool spectral analysis routines. The interface is a delight to use. It's stable as heck. And Martin is great about answering questions if you run into problems. Audacity is good (and cross-platform, which can be useful) but bare bones by comparison. Amadeus gives much more expensive programs like BIAS Peak a run for their money.
posted by realcountrymusic at 5:27 PM on August 4, 2005

I will second Amadeus. I liked it much better than Audacity, and the developer support for it is wonderful.
posted by kaseijin at 6:34 PM on August 4, 2005

How about Soundhack? It's free, too.
posted by cog_nate at 6:32 AM on August 5, 2005

Can I tag on a related question here?

Any suggestions for microphones? The input plug on my G5 is apparently a "line-level microphone jack," but what does that actually mean? Should I go with a USB solution, or what?

posted by jpburns at 6:33 AM on August 5, 2005

Line-level usually means that it won't work with a standard unpowered microphone. You will need to use a microphone pre-amp (or a powered mic with a built-in pre-amp), or run your microphone through a mixer or receiver.

Or you can use a cheap USB device like the Griffin iMic to add a mic-level input to your computer.

Note that Audacity has problems with some USB audio devices on Mac OS X. (I'm one of the authors of Audacity, but I mainly work on the Linux version.)
posted by mbrubeck at 8:31 AM on August 5, 2005

Any suggestions for microphones? The input plug on my G5 is apparently a "line-level microphone jack," but what does that actually mean? Should I go with a USB solution, or what?

Could you be more specific as to what you need to do? A Griffin iMic and a cheap mic will work for some simple purposes, but if you want to do, say, voice-overs in Final Cut or Podcasting, you will want to have a good outboard audio I/O interface and a decent mic. You can spend anything from less than $100 to many thousands. It all depends on what kind of quality you need.
posted by realcountrymusic at 9:19 AM on August 5, 2005

Almost completely off-topic, but Rothko, are you the same person mentioned by Kid 606 on his site? Just wondering,

Curious in New Hampshire
posted by yerfatma at 9:47 AM on August 5, 2005

Thanks for the help everyone and good luck with the mic situation jpburns.
posted by iwouldificould at 10:13 AM on August 5, 2005

Yep... Thanks for those who responded to my "glommed-on" question.

I'm just interested in a simple mic solution, for iChat, and maybe a podcast if I get ambitious...
posted by jpburns at 1:05 PM on August 5, 2005

simple mic solution, for iChat, and maybe a podcast if I get ambitious.

That's a big spectrum. iChat -- you can get away with anything practically. Apple designed it to work with a headset plugged into the line in jack, or USB though bluetooth is the cool new interface, and it sounds like crap. You might get a marginal improvement using better gear, but the point would be lost in the ether(net). Or maybe I just assume voice chat is supposed to sound like crap. Podcasting requires, if your're at all serious about the impression you make, an outboard audio I/O, which can range from the $40 iMic -- which is a marginal improvement over the line-in jack and goes via USB -- up to very expensive MOTU and DigiDesign stuff, with a nice sweet spot suitable for podcasting at around $250-300. For singloe-voice podcasting, something like the M-Audio Audiophile USB (ca. $250, I think, along with their $100 Nova condenser mic would give you a very nice setup for recording direct into the computer (leaving aside the question of recording software, which was discussed on another AskMe thread today). Might make iChat sound better too. The next step up is a doozy.
posted by realcountrymusic at 9:01 PM on August 5, 2005

USB though bluetooth

Umm, USB OR through bluetooth, sorry
posted by realcountrymusic at 5:00 AM on August 6, 2005

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