Guitar Input Wih iPhone
Submitted by Amanda M on Tuesday, February 5, 2013.
Hardware & Accessories
Hi everyone. Does anyone have any experience, good or bad, with any of the guitar-input products on the market? Would you recommend one, or steer clear of one? Do they all seem to be roughly comparable? I am posting my question in this forum because I'm asking about hardware. But I know that al of the gear for running a guitar into an iOS device will inevitably have an accompanying app that you don't necessarily have to use. Nevertheless, I'd be interested to hear about experiences with the companion apps. Thanks a bunch!
Hello. I currently use the Line6 Mobile-In. (Does not work with IPod touch), It's small, very clean, and offers both instrument connectivity, and line level input. The nicest thing I can think of about it, is it only takesover your IDevices audio input. A lot of audio interfaces on the market, takeover both input and output, even if they only truly provide input. What it all boils down to here, is you still have audio through your IDevices hardware speaker, without the need to plugin headphones if you don't want too. I ran this thing through it's pases over Christmas, using it, alongside Garageband to record my latest EP. I was able to run a mixing concel into the Line in and it worked just fine. http://wsep.vze.com for audio examples. As far as application support, the stock Pod application is only somewhat accessible, not allowing you to tweek individual settings, though you can glide between presets fine. As stated above, Garageband works fine with the Mobile-In. You will get about 3-4 hours of battery life per charge when using this device. Their is no way to charge your device when the Mobile-In is connected.
I use the apogee jam. I looked at the Line 6 stuff and it's only compatible with a few apps (mainly it's own) with the apogee jam you can use whatever app you want for a guitar interface.
If you can't stretch to the Apogee Jam (which admittedly is the best sounding device for the task that I've heard yet), a cheaper option is the iRig from IK Multimedia. It's passive so no batteries required, goes in through your audio socket so you can charge simultaneously, small enough to fit in the same pocket as your iPhone, and worked with Amplitube, AmpKit, Pocket GK and GarageBand from what I remember testing. This is kinda a case of you get what you pay for in that the build quality isn't up to much and the iRig doesn't preserve the subtleties of your instrument as well as some of the pricier options to my ears, but if you just want to pick up something cheap to jam through while you explore how the land lies, might be worth considering. HTH, keep us posted. The whole music-making-on-a-phone scene blows my mind.