Top 5 Free Plugins For Garageband

1. Limiter No. 6


Limiter No. 6 is much more than just a limiter it is a very powerful mastering tool. You can use Limiter No. 6 for multiple instruments with the presets or tweak the knobs to your liking. Limiter No. 6 does magic on both bass and the overall master.

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2. Shattered Glass Audio: Code Red


Code Red Free is inspired by a classic, all tube, British consoles from the late 60s. The original console was known for its EQ, bold and punchy character, and the warmth it imparted. The Beatles recorded most of their material using this, and other versions of this console. The easily recognized over driven sound of the Beatles’ Revolution was created by chaining two preamps from this console. Shattered Glass Audio has gone to considerable lengths to find accurate information and reproduce the original EQ curves and accurately model the preamp.

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3. Nova 67P


Nova-67P is a parallel parametric equalizer plugin combined with a compressor. The compressor can optionally operate in frequency dependent and split-band modes. In this case the plugin operates as a parallel dynamic equalizer.

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4. Metric Halo: THUMP


Thump is a unique audio processor that allows you to synthesize low frequency audio to add low end to a track or generate another sound entirely. Thump looks at the pitch and dynamics of its audio input and uses this information to control its oscillators. You can add low end to drums, augment a bass or even create synthetic drones.

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Tyrell Nexus 6 is a free Analog / subtractive synth plug-in developed by uhe.
 Its features are those that we may expect from a vintage synthesizer like the Juno series from Roland. Smooth overdrive in the oscillator mixer. Filter output can be fed back into the mixer. Unison mode, with voice index modulation source. Envelopes can be looped or triggered via LFO. Envelopes re trigger just like classic hardware.

Booking Your First Show

As a musician, your first show is very important. First impressions will always stick with an audience and a venue so it’s important to be prepared. Hopefully, the DIY-FI team can walk you through a couple of steps to preparing for and booking your first show.

Step 1 –  Practice, Practice, Practice

As with anything, the first step is always to practice. If you are part of a band, make sure you and your band mates are all prepared for the show and have a set-list ready to go. Make sure you know how long your playing for and that you get close to that mark.

Step 2 – Making A Demo

Now that you have a solid set-list and show prepared you need to find somewhere to perform. The best way to do this is to create a demo CD and description of your act. Sending this to music venues and bars is helpful to both them and you. They know exactly what who you are and you (hopefully) will get a time to play. If you don’t have the materials to create a basic demo, another great way to play shows is to offer opening for a friend’s band.

Step 3 – Preparation

Now that you have secured your gig you will need to prepare for it. At this point, the songs you are going to play should be pretty tight, that is the number one priority. However, there are other factors to be aware of when playing a show. For example, if you are playing a show at a bar or place that is not centered around music, then it is always a good idea to bring a power strip to the show. This will ensure that every band member has access to an outlet and save you a lot of trouble. Also bringing extra strings (or if possible an extra guitar) will provide a safety net in case a string breaks during a show. Of course, tuners are a must-bring along with duct tape, because you never know what can happen. The final step is to print out your song list for every member of the band so everyone will be on the same page.

Step 4 – Pre-Performance

You’re minutes away from playing your debut show and you’re getting nervous. It is important to calm your nerves before your show. Drinking caffeinated beverages or eating a big meal is advised against. Drinking water is good as well as a light snack. The most important thing to remember is to use the bathroom before you go on!

Step 5 – Post-Performance

You’ve nailed your show, you hit every note, now what? First things first, clear your stuff off the stage. Most likely, you’ll be opening for another band so it’s always polite to make an effort to get off as fast as you can. This makes you look professional and respectful to the band and venue. After that it’s time to relax. Watch the other bands and bask in the glory of your first show. Before you leave make sure to personally thank the owner of the venue and tell them to let you know of any available future shows.

Good luck!

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3 Keyboards For Beginner Musicians

These three keyboards are any great addition to the musician looking to get started! Each of these products has many different functions to learn and master. A disclaimer before we begin, however: a keyboard is separate from a synthesizer, keep on the lookout for our article on those! Okay, let’s get started.

Casio CTK-2400

This is the ultimate beginner’s keyboard. The starting price for one of these beauties is about $170. It comes pre-loaded with 400 tones as well as 150 rhythm tracks. However, the crown jewel of this piece is the EFX sampler with built-in microphone. Record any sound you like and play it back with varying pitch and speed.

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Yamaha PSR e353

The Yamaha PSR e353 is a keyboard for a more moderate musician. It will cost you about $200, however, it has a lot of features for the price. The Yamaha PSR e353 has 573 different tones ranging from your average keyboard tones to some really wacky sounds! It has touch-sensitive keys and an arpeggiator for those classic rock intros or lively dance tracks. You can also save your settings after you’ve set up your perfect tone. Then once it’s all come together the Yamaha PSR e353 has a built-in 2 track recorder. A great keyboard for the value!

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Casio CTK-4400

The Casio CTK-4400 is an upgraded variation on the Casio CTK-2400. It’s the most expensive at around $300 but well worth the extra dollars. It comes with 800 tones and 180 rhythm tracks for a well-developed sound. It comes with touch-sensitive keys as well as a sampler with a maximum of 8 samples. The built-in arperggiator comes with 90 patterns. All this in a portable package makes for a very useful instrument!

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Build Your Own Mini Modular Synth

The Kastle by Bastl


The geniuses over at Bastl in the Czech Republic have outdone themselves again. This time they have created a mini modular synth that runs on only 3 AA batteries not only that you can build it all by  yourself with their easy to use kit all for under $100.


Due to its unique digital Lo-Fi sound it can be used to create melodies or insane sci-fi sounds. The Kastle can be used alone or can be implemented into other modular gear.

The oscillator section has 3 sound parameters: pitch, timbre and waveshape – all with voltage control and with 3 different synthesis modes.

It has a main output and a square wave output. Both can be used independently or combined.

The 3 synthesis modes are phase distortion, phase modulation (also known as FM) and track & hold modulation. Each mode utilizes two oscillators.

The Pitch controls the main oscillator, the Timbre sets the pitch of the modulating oscillator and the waveshape depends on the synthesis mode. The waveshape also controls the pulse width of the square wave output from the main oscillator.

Kastle is an open source DIY project which runs on two Attiny 85 chips that can be reprogrammed with an Arduino (google: “programming Attiny 85 with Arduino”).

One chip is dedicated to sound generation while the other handles modulation. Several firmwares for the Attiny chips are available.

Instructions, materials and much more is available here.

4 Components to Help Your Band/Solo Career Succeed

The 4 components described below will have big influences in the music opportunity you have given yourself. Keeping these elements in mind will keep you on a steady path towards your successful career.

Plan of Action- An easy to follow template that helps assist with accomplishing goals. This will ensure you are always moving forward at an effective pace with no unnecessary steps. You will be able to apply this template to any step in your music career. For example if you are at the beginning stages of creating your band, plan out how to get your equipment. If you are further down the road, plan out how you will be producing your first EP.

screen-shot-2017-02-06-at-6-19-18-pmTask: What goal do you want to accomplish.

Action Steps: What steps must be taken in order to accomplish this goal.

Who: Who is the person responsible for achieving this goal.

Deadline: When should this goal be done (give yourself a reasonable time frame) 

Finished Date: When was this goal completed 

Results: What was the outcome of this task. List both the positive and negative results.

Don’t wait to be discovered- Record companies and booking agents don’t go out of their way to find you, you must find them. There are people out there who are willing to help you and help your music career expand, but you must be ready for this kind of commitment. You must find these helpful guides and have a prepared plan before contacting them. This will be a great help to you in the future and make it easier for you to get along with the people you will be working with.  

Take Your Act Seriously- You may have heard the phrase, “What you put into life is what you get out of it,” (Clint Eastwood). Your listeners will give you the amount of respect that you give your career. You are the one who sets the tone and aesthetic of your music career and by sending off a strong message you are communicating to the people that you are serious about your work. Getting this message across is very important and the best part, you don’t have to speak a word. You will show this in your work and people will know that this is real and this is happening.

Have Passion- Finally, having passion is an essential when making your music. Before moving forward, ask yourself, do I enjoy making music or am I doing this because I have to fit a certain expectation or for attention grab. Being honest with yourself can only help you. If you don’t have passion chances are you don’t enjoy making music as much as you would like too and chances are others won’t like listening to your music as much as you would like them too either. If you have passion, creating music will never be a chore and you will enjoy going out of your way to create something new. Passion will help push you through your darkest moments and help lift you up to great heights in times of victory. Passion will always be there for you, but it is something that must be natural and cannot be manifested.  

Conclusion- To recap, have a plan of action. This will ensure you are always moving forward at an efficient pace. Don’t wait to be discovered, go out there and make yourself known. There are people waiting to help you, all you have to do is find them. Take your act seriously, you are the template and everyone else will fall in line. Make sure people know that you are serious about your career and prove it by showing them. And finally have passion. This is the difference between your career being something you truly enjoy to a chore that will never go away. With this new knowledge go out there and make the most successful music career you possibly can, good luck to you all.

3 Cheap Audio Recorders

Recording your audio is an integral part of allowing other people to hear your sound.

1 -Zoom H1


The Zoom H1 is one of the cheapest high quality recorders on the market. The X/Y stereo mic runs off of one AA battery and is compatible with a micro SD card.  The Zoom can record audio in MP3 and WAV. The product retails for $100, but is often found for less. A demo of the Zoom H1 recording power can be found here.



Image result for TASCAM DR-05

This product was TASCAM’s answer to The Zoom H1. This easy to operate audio recorder is very cheap ($84), especially considering how powerful it is. The audio recorder runs off of two AA battery’s or off of the provided charging cable.  Much like the ZOOM H1, the tascam can record WAV/MP3 and is micro SD compatable. A demo of the TASCAMS power can be found here.



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Lastly, The Study ZOOM H4N is everything the zoom is but better, enhanced on board editing, full SD card support, enhanced sound quality, and XLR/TRS hookup. The audio recorder retails for $160, a demo of the audio recorder can be found here.

Author: Jackson Dunavant



Getting The Most Out Of Bandcamp

Let us consider distribution as a constant war in which bands, labels, and artists battle to be seen and heard by the masses. In this war Bandcamp and Soundcloud are the front line, they are your first and sometimes last chance to grab the viewers attention and to make them a fan. Bandcamp and Soundcloud have unique attributes and characteristics, they can both be very useful to the artist but they must be utilized differently. Today we will be talking specifically about Bandcamp. I will be breaking this down to the top 5 best things that will help you get the most out of Bandcamp.

1. Visuals



The visual aspect of your Bandcamp  page is the first sign of you as an artist. It should portray your personality and will play a large part into whether or not people look further into your page. Above are 3 very different examples of stylistic approaches to a Bandcamp page. The first example uses a very minimal approach using only colors that mix together well. The colors compliment the album cover itself creating a simple yet enjoyable page. The next example utilizes the repeat function and custom banner function of Bandcamp to create a seamless background. Finally the last example uses both of the aforementioned styles to create a very maximal design based on an idea  (e.g. peaches.) It uses the repeat function to create multiple peaches on the side, the font color matches the background color to create a seamless transition from background to font.

2. Cross Marketing

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When someone goes onto your Bandcamp page that is your chance to gain a new fan. You don’t want them to click around for a minute get bored and leave, you need to hold their attention. That is when cross marketing comes in, it’s a really simple concept, the wider the net the more chance of catching a fish. When you connect and reference all your social media outlets to each other you are creating a network. If someone finds your Instagram then they will find your Bandcamp if they find your Soundcloud they will find your Instagram and vice versa. It really helps have a similar name on all accounts to allow for easier cross marketing. This will increase your chances of getting new fans and keeping their interest.

3. Tagging


Tagging your music is very important. With tagging, it truly is more the merrier, the more tags you use the higher the chance of your music being seen. When people look up jazz on Bandcamp only the albums tagged with jazz will show up. That means when you are tagging your music don’t be afraid of tagging it with as many genres and sub genres as you need.

4. Physical Sales

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Bandcamp also allows you to sell your merchandise straight from your site. That means T-Shirts, Vinyl, Cassettes or anything else you can imagine. This allows you to make a handy dandy digital storefront right along with your digital music uploads. It is extremely easy to set and will help you generate  additional profit. Here is how to set it up.

5. Bandcamp Subscriptions

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Bandcamp now offers a subscription service for your fans. Where they pay a monthly or yearly fee of your choosing. It could be a fan club, a VIP club, or a Virtual backstage pass. In exchange for the monthly or yearly rate, the fan would have access to your back catalog of music and your new releases as well as subscriber exclusive content. You can also give subscribers discounts on merchandise, early releases, tickets to gigs and anything else you can think up. The great part about this for you as an artists, is that the subscribers offer a more reliable monthly income. It also allows you to create a closer connection to fans by using the subscriber community, similar to Instagram it allows you to post images, videos and much more.