Are Mac audio tools male only? Do you know any woman who uses Garageband? SoundTrack? FinalCut Pro?
Me neither. Not even the women at Mac360, right? Right. Me? I use everything. Why? Because audio is a man’s world.
One of the features of Mac360 that appealed to me when I first started writing, was the diversity of the staff. We’re Mac men and women, differing backgrounds and experience, spread all over the country.
That allows for a diversity of views and approaches to reviewing and using Mac applications and utilities.
Getting started at Mac360 was made even easier as Bambi and Alex gave me a free hand to choose reviews on Mac applications I use, as well as those I’d like to use.
As a Mac system administrator I found quick common ground with Mac360’s system admin and technical guru, Ron McElfresh, based in Honolulu. Between the two of us, we have nearly every Mac audio and video application available.
It’s a healthy list, too. We both use FinalCut Studio, including SoundTrack for audio. We’re both long time ProTools users. We use Apple’s Logic for post production. I do music, Ron does audio voice overs.
Last week we were using Skype video to chat about the new release of Amadeus Pro, an upgrade to a venerable Mac audio application for editing. I asked Ron why Mac360 didn’t do a Podcast. The reason? Women.
We laughed about it, but it seemed obvious to both of us that women don’t like to hear the sound of their own voice when recorded and played back. It could be argued that they like the sound of it for other reasons.
Ron said that Tera Jean Patricks, Mac360’s founder, thought about doing a Podcast when it became the craze a few years ago, but dropped the idea after complaints from Bambi and Alex and Carol. Do I see a trend?
Ron also said getting everyone together to record a Podcast was akin to herding cats. That I understand.
It seems to me that Skype would be a good way to record a Podcast, particularly with Ecamm’s Call Recorder.
Only Ron and Jack thought it a good idea. Bambi, Alex, Carol, and Kate didn’t. Do I see a trend?
I don’t know specifically why it is that there seem to be few women, particularly in our group of Mac360’s diverse staff, who know anything about using audio on the Mac. It just is.
The Mac is a great place for audio recording applications. Some free, some inexpensive, some powerful and very expensive. With ProTools, for example, you need to buy hardware from DigiDesign just to use the application.
Garageband, on the other hand, comes with each new Mac and is a superb audio recording tool, for beginners and the rest of us in the semi-pro league.
Not surprisingly, Ron and I both agreed that Amadeus Pro, a new update to the long available Amadeus, is a great tool that does what Garageband doesn’t, but doesn’t carry the expense of other Mac audio tools.
For example, I use Amadeus to remove noise, those annoying pops and rumbling hisses, from old cassette tapes and vinyl records (which still out number my CD collection).
Ron uses Amadeus to edit audio files, and export audio to file formats not handled by Garageband. AIFF, WAV, MP3, SoundDesigner II, and others.
Both of us have a collection of Audio Unit and VST plug-ins and many of those extend functions in Amadeus Pro. Probably my favorite new function is the ability to add multiple tracks for editing.
Ultimately, Amadeus Pro is an audio recording and editing application with special tools that set it apart from the mundane, at a price point substantially less than tools used in the professional crowd, including ProTools, SoundTrack, Logic, and Peak, among others.
Amadeus Pro bills itself as “The Swiss army knife of sound editing” and that’s a logical and acceptable moniker.
Back to the original question: “Are audio applications on the Mac made only for men?” You’d think so. I know many women who use Macs, but none use any of the various audio recording applications. None. Not even the women at Mac360.
Surely there are women wannabe-musicians who use Garageband to record and edit music, right? Right?
Do you use the Mac to record audio; voice or music or both? What’s your favorite tool and why? Share your experience and perspective in the Comments section below.