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sargeek1975 Level 1 (0 points)

I just don't get it.


I have a brand new Macbook Air that came with Garageband 11. I'm trying to use my acoustic pickup to record me playing my acoustic guitar in Garageband and it just won't recognize it. The pickup works just fine when I choose electric guitar, but the pickup isn't recognized under microphone options when I choose acoustic. It will ONLY let me use the built in mic, and seems like it will ONLY recognize a true microphone for recording an acoustic guitar.


Either I'm an idiot (which I'm hoping is the case) or this is a stupid oversight to ONLY allow acoustic guitars to be recorded with a microphone and not a pickup.



Again, I want to be clear: my macbook, the pickup and garageband all work perfectly as I can record using the pickup with my acoustic guitar if I choose electric guitar in garageband. I'm trying to figure out how to use the pickup when choosing an acoustic guitar in garageband.


I thank anyone who can help me.

GarageBand (Mac) '11, Mac OS X (10.7.4)
  • Christoph Drösser Level 6 (11,275 points)

    That doesn't make sense to me. If you plug something into the line-in port (that's what you did, right?), GB has no why of knowing what it is that you plugged in - a microphone, a pickup, a line-out from a pre-amp, whatever. It just takes the analog input and digitizes it, and then you can run the signal to any real instrument or guitar track. So what works for "acoustic guitar" (or any of the real instrument presets) should also work as the input signal for an electric guitar track.


    Another thing: are you sure you are really recording through the line-in, or is it just the internal mic picking up the acoustic guitar's sound?

  • sargeek1975 Level 1 (0 points)

    When I select electric guitar (again; while actually using my acoustic with a pickup that is plugged into the line in on my 2012 macbook air running garageband 11), it is using the pickup and not the mic because when I talk, my voice doesn't get recorded.



    If what you said was true, then you couldn't plug ANYTHING into the line in (to include any instrument or external mic) as garageband would not recognize it.

  • bobwild Level 4 (1,625 points)

    It seems to me, whe you install and use a pickup on an acoustic guitar, it is now an electric guitar. This is because the audio is picked up by the pickup and electrically connected to the amp, which in this case is the mac running Garageband.


    Garageband is using this same logic. If you tell garageband you have an accoustic guitar that mean the guitar has no pickup and Garageband must use the microphone to get the sound from the acoustic guitar.


    So .....


    1. if you have an acoustic guitar with no pickup tell Garageband it is an acoustic guitar and garageband will get the sound through the mic.


    2. If you have an acoustic guitar with a pickup and want to use the pickup, then tell garageband it is an electric guitar and garageband with get the sound from the pickup.

  • sargeek1975 Level 1 (0 points)

    Well.....I take back what I said. Drosser was right, it wasn't actually using the pickup,it was using the mic.



    So now I'm seriously confused.


    Why won't garageband recognize the line in, when that's how everyone says to hook it up?

  • HangTime Level 9 (50,490 points)

    sargeek1975 wrote:


    Why won't garageband recognize the line in, when that's how everyone says to hook it up?


    (Let the page FULLY load. The link to your answer is at the top of your screen)

  • sargeek1975 Level 1 (0 points)

    And bob, I don't want to get the sound through the mic.


    All of my real gear is home; I'm out here in San Diego til September. I just bought this macbook and it came with garageband. I only brought my acoustic out here with me and the pickup was with it in the case so I decided to see how much easier garageband would be when compared to my digital 8-track recorder back home.



    The built in mic ***** on this, and by what I'm being told now, garageband won't even recognize a good mic plugged in to the line in, which makes no sense.




    I'm so confused now.


    I want to use the pick up as it would be the best way to record as the built in mic on my macbook air *****. How can I get garageband to recognize it?


    That's my question.


    And if it can't? That's a serious oversight........

  • sargeek1975 Level 1 (0 points)
    • 1. Open GB's prefs, select the Audio MIDI tab, and choose "Built-In Input" from the Input popUp menu.
    • 2. Create a New Basic track and hit record
    • 3. There is no 3.






    Built in input would be the built in mic.......not what I want to use.

  • sargeek1975 Level 1 (0 points)





    I can't DO that, at all.

  • sargeek1975 Level 1 (0 points)

    And I think I have it figured out:



    A Macbook Air doesn't have any sort of audio input. I (for some reason) assumed that the headphone jack also served as a line in.



    So now I'm assuming that I have to purchase a USB adapter of some sort?

  • Christoph Drösser Level 6 (11,275 points)

    It looks like the headphones jack only accepts input from some headset models, it's not a real line-in. Sorry.

  • sargeek1975 Level 1 (0 points)

    I read in more than one place that it IS a line in, it's just that you have to get an adapter that seperates the input from the output.............

  now I'm confused again.

  • peachtree82 Level 1 (0 points)

    I tried the same with my guitar, no luck. One thing I noticed, is that line in actually works but only for the guitar tuner that comes with garageband. So when I strum, tuner picks up the sound and works just fine, but it doesnt record anysound and the line in meter doesnt show any sound detection. Its frustrating.

  • Christopher Scott Level 1 (65 points)

    Some Macbooks have 1/8" jacks that serve as either input OR output jacks (you can choose which from within the System Preferences). However, the Macbook Air isn't one of them - its 1/8" jack is output ONLY.


    Any efforts you've made thus far to record your guitar have been picked up solely by the MBA's built-in microphone which, though sufficient for video chatting, isn't any good for music recording.


    You need to get a USB interface for your system. If you're recoridng with microphones (i.e. using XLR cables) then you need something along the lines of this:



    If you want to simply plug your guitar's 1/4" cord into your computer in order to, for example, record using Garagebad, then you need somethig like this:


  • isteveus Level 5 (4,310 points)

    If someone reads this and is making the choice between the two above interfaces, Art and Behringer go with the Art it has two channels with either XLR or 1/4" input.

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