Top 4 Recording and Sound Apps for iPhone and iPad

Recording and sound apps for amateur musicians and sound professionals

Apple's iPhone. Courtesy Apple Computer

Whether you're a weekend warrior recording your music at home and mixing your band's own sound, or you work as a professional audio engineer mixing music for a living, take a look at these highly rated recording and sound iOS apps for your iPhone and iPad. 


It's impossible to overlook Apple's GarageBand on this list. It is a complete, out-of-the-box app for musicians. This affordable home recording app offers 32 tracks for recording, and the simple interface makes it easy to immediately start creating music. With its generous selection of virtual instruments, you have everything you need to get going. 

You can use Live Loops to make music like a DJ — introducing loops and audio effects in real time. Plug an electric guitar or bass into your iOS device and play through classic amps. Choose from nine acoustic or electronic drummers to add a virtual drummer to your music. 

Export your music to your iTunes library on your Mac or PC, and share on YouTube, Facebook or SoundCloud.

Spire Recorder

Audio engineers should check out Spire Recorder from iZotope, Inc. Designed by an Emmy Award-winning audio-tech company, this app adds professional polish to your music. You can record, mix, and share audio from anywhere. 

The tracks are enhanced automatically with built-in de-esser, compression, dynamic EQ, and a limiter to deliver great audio quality. The interface receives praise for its simplicity. Despite the excellent background audio processing, the mixing stage is the real star here. 

Singer-songwriters benefit from recording an acoustic guitar part, singing the vocal, and then adding a couple of harmonies in just minutes. Hands-free controls, an in-app metronome for perfect timing, and methods for sharing your music through email and storage devices make this a useful app for your music toolbox.

BeatMaker 3

BeatMaker 3 from Intua isn't the easiest sound app to use, but it's one of the most powerful. Not only does BeatMaker 3 function as a full-featured sampler and beat producer for recording and live use, it also allows you to edit and manipulate audio in ways previously reserved only for digital audio workstations.
This advanced mobile music workstation features 170 high-quality instrument and drum presets, along with 128 trigger pads and audio recording capabilities. It has I/O routing options usually seen only on fancier programs and metronome support so you can always stay on the beat.

Music amateurs and professionals can make terrific music with BeatMaker 3. Its wave editor, multitrack sequencer, drum machine, and keyboard sampler deliver superior results for a mobile workstation. It is far more powerful at mixing than its competitors, which serious musicians will appreciate.

This app, despite its iOS lineage, is best run on an iPad, though.


If you're mixing your own music, either live or in the studio, or are a sound engineer of any level, you'll want a Real Time Analyzer. RTA Pro from Studio Six Digital allows you to visually see what frequency ranges are in your audio, which is handy for mastering, correcting weird sounding recordings, or making your live show sound the best it can.
RTA Pro is a professional-grade acoustical analysis tool that combines an accurate read-out and modes that include octave and 1/3 octave. Use it to test your speakers, do acoustical analysis work, or tune your room. Studio Six Digital analyzed all the iOS devices and created microphone compensation files that are applied automatically for RTA Pro. It can also be fully calibrated for the internal iOS microphone or with one of the company's measurement mic solutions.