Music and Technology: Two Free iPhone Apps to Record and Edit Sound
August 3, 2011
— apps, contemporary music, education, iphone, media, music, music education, music theory, software, sound, soundcloud, teaching
Despite Apple locking-down many iPhone OS functions, you can now record and edit sounds with two free iPhone apps and use two excellent cloud-services to boot!
The first is Soundcloud. Soundcloud will host two hours of your music for free, provide you with integration to over 100 other online services, create beautiful widgets, and offer you a free desktop uploader and phone app. Note that Soundcloud doesn’t limit the number of tracks. Rather, the limit is by time. So you can give listeners with full-resolution high bitrate files for free download while Soundcloud creates a free mp3 streaming version in an embeddable widget.
With the app, you can record sounds on the fly, then immediately upload the track to your account. From this account, you can download the track to your phone or computer. You can also stream the uploaded content over wifi or 3G.
Soundcloud also has social features allowing you to share sounds and follow other account holders. You can also comment on the tracks by placing text right on the waveform itself!
Using another free app called Hokusai, you can edit, add effects, and export mp3 or wav files.
According to their description:
“Hokusai is a multitrack audio editor for iPhone or iPad. Record or import a track, and make it sound the way you want it to: not just trimming the ends, but full cut, copy, paste and delete, and a suite of filters and special effects available.
Edit many tracks side-by-side, mix them together, and export to wave or mp4 format — then transfer them to your computer via USB or Dropbox, or send them to another app on your device.
Hokusai is streamlined to give you a clean, clear view of your tracks. Use the familiar pinch and swipe gestures to zoom right in and fiddle with fine detail, or step back to see the big picture. And just like selecting text in other apps, you can select pieces of audio. Live “scrubbing” means you can hear the sound under your fingertip as you make your adjustments. And you needn’t fear a bad edit with our full undo/redo support: as many levels as space allows.
Hokusai comes free with a set of useful tools such as fade in/out, normalise volume levels, reverse time, and basic synthesis. If you need more power, you can upgrade from inside the app to add new tools and effects, including: AudioCopy/AudioPaste, grain synthesis, noise gating, time-stretching, pitch-bending, echo, reverb, modulation (AM & FM), resonance, distortion, grunge, vocal levelling, monster voice, high/low/band-pass/notch-cut filter and more.”
Hokusai integrates with Dropbox allowing you to export and share files, though not with as much panache as Soundcloud.