How to Edit Audio Files with Garageband

This is a next new tutorial in our Garageband tutorial series. You can read the first tutorials here and here.

Need to remove some background noise, mistakes or unneeded fillers from your audio files? Perhaps you want to clean up a podcast or conference call or a song you’ve just recorded. Well then I highly recommend using Garageband.

Garageband, by far, has one of the most user-friendly interfaces. The easy-to-use software enables quick editing that doesn’t require any specific skills. All you really need to know is how to click and drag and you’re ready to go.

Here are several techniques to help improve your Garageband editing.

Simple Cutting and Editing

The first step involves isolating and deleting unwanted recordings. Let’s say you want to delete a segment of a whole audio file. All you need to do is locate the beginning of the segment you want to cut and place the red line there. Go to the Edit menu and click on Split. This will divide the file into two parts. Next, go to the end of the segment you want to delete and split it once again. Now you should have three separate parts. Simply click on the unwanted segment and press delete.

If you want to merge the two remaining parts all you have to do is click on one of them, and drag to connect.

Cutting and editing in Garageband 1

Cutting and editing in Garageband 1

Cutting and editing in Garageband 2

Cutting and editing in Garageband 2

Fine Tuning Your Audio

Now that you’ve edited out all the excess noise you’ll want to fine tune your recording. Unless you used a professional microphone and recorded your audio in a sound proof room, there will probably be some hiss and crackle in the background. To remove these unwanted sounds you should adjust the volume and the EQ.

On the track menu you’ll see a slider where you can adjust the volume. Sometimes lowering the volume can remove hiss while keeping the recording at an audible level. However it’s not always that simple and you might have to adjust the EQ.

The EQ graph can be accessed by clicking on the Edit button on the Real Instrument column on the right side. Here you will see a blue wave icon. Click on that to open the EQ graph. This is a little tricky to understand so I suggest playing around with the different parameters until you get the noise reduced. The quality of your voice may change slightly but at least you will be rid of any background noise without too much volume reduction.

To the left of the volume slider on the track panel you’ll see an arrow pointing downwards. Click this to open the volume meter. By lowering and raising the volume curve you can fade in/out the audio or even crossfade separate audio recordings. Try playing around with this for a few minutes and you’ll get the hang of it in no time.

Get Garageband from the Mac App Store

Comments

  1. Laurel Mikay says:

    Excellent! Thank you so much! This was exactly what I was looking for! I thought I would have to go out and buy a microphone to be able to record without the hiss, turns out I didn’t have to! By playing around with it, I was able to get a perfect sounding recording!

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