By now, if you didn’t know you could record and perform music with your iPhone, it’s ok, welcome to the 2010’s. The first audio interface for an iPhone was called the “iRig” in 2010, and it connected directly to the audio jack of your iPhone, creating both and input and an output for you to still be able plug in your guitar and listen with headphones, or go live out to a P.A. or a mixer. In 2016, the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus appeared without the audio jack, and most people “thought” that was going to be a problem for people using the iRig line of products as audio interfaces, but actually, IK Multimedia’s interfaces coincidentally “solved” the “no headphone output” issue on Apple’s new iPhone 7 series, with their lightning-connected inputs that also provided a headphone output for monitoring. PROBLEM SOLVED before it even started. Plus, all of the previous iRig audio jack-connected products still worked on iPhone 7 series, with the adapter that was provided in every iPhone 7 and 7 Plus box.
Oh yeah, you’re first question was, “How do I connect my guitar or instrument to my iPhone 7 and record with GarageBand or another app, like AmpliTube, SampleTank or VocaLive?” Answer: IK Multimedia’s iRig audio interfaces. Here is a short list that will help you get started…
Low budget? We’ve all been down that road. Let’s start with “single parent’, “school kid” or “starving musician” and work our way all the way up to “Portable Packin’ Fabulous Musician” with a full studio rig that has amazing sounds and rockin’ interfaces in his/her pocket or backpack.
And please do not forget that these starving guitarist/bassist/acoustic/keyboard playing singer/songwriter/student/children musicians still somehow can afford the iPhone 7/7 Plus and it’s mobile data plan? (OK, seems legit):
“Keepin it Real”: Making music for under $100
iRig Acoustic Stage is a patented, revolutionary digital microphone system that makes your guitar sound exactly as if it was captured with a classic recording studio setup, giving you full rich studio-quality sound on the stage.
Vocals??? Yep, there would never be any love songs or sobbing, sloppy, heartfelt tears to love songs without vocals, right?
The Freshman singer/broadcaster/karaoke master/ceremonious master of future crybabies:
You can get a kickass condenser-electret microphone for under $60, called the iRig Mic, that will connect directly to your iPhone 7/7 Plus using the adapter kit for audio-jack enabled devices (and give you a headphone output! Yay!) Or just need karaoke in the dorm to attract more of the opposite sex? Opt for the iRig Voice microphone $39, and make sure you get a cute color for the girls to sing into, like Pink, or Baby Blue.
The Sophomore who goes digital on the input:
You finally got some more dough to spend on a microphone for the sorority/fraternity’s stage with your iPhone 7? The iRig Mic HD rolls in at right around $99 (street value) from any Guitar Center or Sam Ash music store.
The Graduate with digital inputs galore:
Need Studio vocals? The iRig Mic Studio is a large-diaphragm condenser-electret mic that will work with the iPhone 7 series, and also a lot of other gear! ($199.99 from http://www.ikmultimedia.com, or your favorite retailer). When paired with IK’s Mic Room application from the App Store for just $7.99, you can turn your iRig Mic HD or iRig Mic Studio into an even BETTER sounding mic with the help of the software – there are 20 different studio mic models to choose from. Oh yeah, and of course, they all work with GarageBand!!!
Last but not least, you have MIDI controllers to connect, right? You have a couple options here:
Option 1: The Smart Way and Save Money at the same time – iRig Pro DUO ($199.99). Not only does the iRig Pro DUO provide a MIDI interface so you can connect and play your MIDI Controller, it gives you two channels to connect instruments & XLR microphones, while still providing a headphone output. You can digitally connect using the Lightning adapter, and it doesn’t draw any power from the phone or tablet, because it has batteries inside the unit. Boom.
Option 2: The Other Other Way – Get a dedicated MIDI Controller that connects to the iPhone 7/7Plus, like the iRig Keys ($99), iRig Keys PRO w/ Lightning ($149) or iRig Keys MINI ($79). All work with IK’s apps, like iGrand Piano, SampleTank, iLectric Piano, and of course, GarageBand!
Option 3: You go Mack-Daddy on it (drops mic) and opt for the one-stop-studio shop for everything iPhone/iPad/Mac recording-related, called the iRig Pro DUO Studio Suite Deluxe Bundle, which contains everything you would ever need to record guitar/bass/drums/vocals/keyboards and more, with tons of software included for just $399.99.
iRig Pro DUO Studio Suite Deluxe Bundle includes most of the aforementioned IK Multimedia products and more: iRig Pro DUO, iRig Keys Pro, iRig Mic Studio XLR, PLUS iRig Headphones, AmpliTube 4 for Mac/PC, T-RackS Deluxe for Mac/PC, Mic Room for Mac/PC, SampleTank 3 SE for Mac/PC and Miroslav Philharmonik 2 CE for Mac/PC (And guess what? All of this hardware works with GarageBand on iOS/Mac/PC!!!)