So you want to record audio on your Mac? You’re in luck. Whether it’s a simple podcast, you playing the guitar or piano and singing until the cows run away from home, or you have ideas for a multi-track recording of your band, Apple has you covered.
Yes, GarageBand is that good. It’s comes with multiple track capability, plenty of additional professional level tools, filters, and enhancements, and, compared to professional audio recorders and editors, is an absolute steal at free. Anything better? Yes.
Not. So. Free.
Color me an Adobe Audition user dating back almost a decade and a half, back to when Audition was known as Cool Edit. If there is a better, more capable, more professional audio recorder and editor for the masses of Mac and Windows users, I haven’t used it.
Audition records audio into multiple tracks from multiple sources in real time. Then, you can edit, sweeten, enhance, and arrange audio in ways only professionals dream of, but all available to you with a few points and clicks (and payments for a list of sometimes necessary filters and effects that run ad nauseam). Audition works with third party hardware, handles dynamic effects, drops in timecode, comes with a massive keyboard shortcut editor, more effects than previous versions, and, well, it does almost everything you want.
For a price.
How much? Audition is priced forever. While not an exact apple to Apple comparison, Logic Pro X for the Mac is priced at $200 and requires a paid update every three years or so. Compare that to Adobe Audition at $20 per month. Forever. That’s $240 a year, $480 for two years, $720 for three years. That’s what subscription prices can do. Escalate. Forever.
My objection to such subscriptions is not based upon Adobe Audition’s capabilities. It’s the ongoing price tag that adds up to a substantial amount over time; the nemesis of many subscription models. Adobe’s entire Creative Cloud can be obtained for about $50 a month. Every month. Forever. That adds up but Adobe makes the situation worse because it continues to add more functions, more capabilities, more– to justify the ongoing subscription price.
The market has a broader span of users and customers than an all or nothing subscription price. Adobe responded with what I would call Photoshop Lite. Photoshop Elements and Premiere Elements (for video editing). No subscription. One price. $100 and $150, respectively. Upgrade to newer versions every few years. That’s on the expensive side, but it works for the great unwashed masses of graphic design and video editing who don’t need all the features of Photoshop or Premiere, but are still in the market.
Audition does not have a less expensive little brother. Subscription only. That’s the trend these days. My iPhone is a subscription model with the iPhone Upgrade Program. It’s acceptable because there is no interest, I can get a new iPhone every year, and the only added expense is for Apple Care.
Maybe Adobe doesn’t bother with Audition Lite or Audition Elements because Apple’s very capable GarageBand is free and built into every Mac. That’s too bad. I like and use GarageBand but it is not Audition Lite but I’m actively looking for a replacement to an Audition application that has more features than God could remember (and he named all the stars).