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Perhaps the best way we can recommend GarageBand for iPad is to say that the music making time we’ve spent with it so far has been some of the most enjoyable we’ve had for a long while. It feels less like a cutdown version of the Mac version than it does a companion app, and the Touch/Smart Instruments take it to another place entirely.
That said, the promised compatibility with GarageBand ’11 doesn’t seem to have materialised yet: we tried to load an iPad song into the very latest version on the Mac and were told that we needed an update. Presumably, this will be on the way soon.
That’s no reason to wait to invest in GarageBand for iPad, though: at just £2.99, it’s quite simply the biggest bargain that the music making app world has to offer, and a no-brainer purchase for anyone who’s remotely interested in doing anything musical on their Apple tablet. And we’re saying that before we’ve had chance to fully explore the built-in Sampler (you can record sounds and pitch them across a keyboard), guitar amps and audio recording functionality.
The app isn’t yet perfect - the lack of MIDI editing is our biggest bugbear, and we’d also like to see an improved roster of effects and at least basic automation facilities. As a first version release, though, GarageBand for iPad is pretty incredible, and there’s huge scope to take it further.
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