We need to mix down our material to a stereo audio file in order to make it playable on an audio device or burned to CD. Also, in order to properly evaluate your music, you need to hear it in a variety of settings. So here's how we are going to do that.
1) Spend some time getting your fades, panning, balance and sounds the way you want them. Make sure you have cut out any extraneous material and moved your song to start at the beginning of the timeline. CAREFULLY PLACING THE DIFFERENT "INSTRUMENTS" IN YOUR MIX WILL MAKE A LOT OF IMPACT!
2) open Preferences and then go to "Export" in the Preferences dialog. Check your playlist, composer name and album name and change them if you want. You will need this information to find your mixed-down audio later.
3) Make sure your tracks are enabled (that nothing is muted that you want to be heard) and go to Share > Send Song to iTunes. IMPORTANT: Select Mp3 if you want a small, portable file (around 5MB). AIFF and WAV are professional, un-compressed formats that sound better but create BIG file sizes! AAC is Apple's format and may not be playable on a non-Apple device.
4) Once you have exported to iTunes, go into iTunes and locate the playlist where your newly mixed song is placed.
5) Listen to the song in iTunes. Is your impression of it different when you are listening without the "visual aid" of the GarageBand interface? If so, how? Are there things you want to fix about arrangement, sounds, balance?
6) Go back to GarageBand and make your fixes.
7) Send your song to iTunes again with your fixes and improvements. Listen critically to your results. Are you happy?
8) Once you are happy with your mixdown, if you have a USB storage device, plug it in and go in GarageBand go to Share > Export Song to Disk and simply follow the directions to export an mp3 of your work.
9) If you don't have your own USB storage device, get Mr. Pfaff who will put your mp3 on his storage device and then make your work accessible from the FILES link on this page.
10) (Outside of project time) -- Open, download and listen to your creation in as many different formats as possible. Put it on your mp3 player. Listen to it on your stereo. On your computer at home. What other things are becoming apparent to you about your mix? Does the balance of instruments and sounds change from place to place? What adjustments need to be made in order to make this as listenable as possible in ALL environments?
11) Next week, re-convene with your findings and adjust your mixes appropriately. Project Presentation Time is at hand!!!