Following the recent update of Apple’s iOS and MacOS apps, their GarageBand digital audio workstation is now available as a completely free download for all interested users.
Until the latest update, GarageBand was offered as a free app for customers who purchased new iOS and MacOS based devices. The app is now available for all users as a free download from the App Store. Same goes for Apple’s free iMovie, Numbers, Keynote, and Page apps. It’s also worth noting that GarageBand now requires MacOS 10.10 or later, or iOS 10.2 or later to run.
What’s particularly cool about GarageBand on iOS, apart from offering a decent amount of recording and mixing features for less demanding projects, is that it includes the mobile version of the Alchemy 2 virtual synthesizer by Camel Audio. The new synth is called Alchemy Touch and is optimized for use on mobile phones and tablets. This feature alone makes GarageBand worth the download on iOS, even if you’re already using other apps to make music on your portable device. Obviously, this is a lightweight version of Alchemy 2, but it’s still a great source of premium quality sounds. It comes with over 150 factory patches which can be tweaked using the Transform Pad functionality.
Other cool features that were recently introduced in the iOS version of GarageBand are new effects such as the Visual EQ (a parametric equalizer with a real-time spectrum display) and Bitcrusher, support for Audio Unit Extensions (these are available separately in the App Store), and the ability to remotely add tracks to Logic Pro X projects via iCloud. Using the app on devices with larger screens (such as the iPad Pro) enables several workflow and usability enhancements, such as larger virtual MIDI keyboards, access to a larger number of loop slots, etc.
GarageBand is available for free download in the App Store.