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iPhone Built-in Mic

I was just sent a rehearsal audio file recorded on an iPhone. It is so awful sounding, it makes me sad.

The sound is overly compressed, lacks low-end, and is generally unpleasant and ear-fatiguing.

It is a multi-track recording of a mallet instrument which is arguably too loud for the built in mic. Though the sound isn't clipped, the compressor is making such a mess of it.

I wish iOS had an advanced mode for these kinds of processes. "You are about to record using the mic. Would you like to set the level manually? Or have the device automatically adjust the level dynamically?" Then you could choose to adjust a level slider. "Play or sing something fairly loud, and set the level so that the meter does not go past yellow."
It's this weird mixture of iOS devices getting very powerful, but not giving the user access to make settings for anything.

In many cases, idiot-proof=idiotic.
On April 15, 2020 - @stub said:
I was just sent a rehearsal audio file recorded on an iPhone. It is so awful sounding, it makes me sad.

The sound is overly compressed, lacks low-end, and is generally unpleasant and ear-fatiguing.

It is a multi-track recording of a mallet instrument which is arguably too loud for the built in mic. Though the sound isn't clipped, the compressor is making such a mess of it.


I feel you :)
Did you tried Measurement mode in AudioShare’s recorder? (Rec button > settings > hardware settings) It should “disable the device’s built-in audio processing, improve fidelity”, as description says. To me, it turns off the compression (device’s built-in voice oriented audio compression), using this helps to keep natural dynamic range of the instrument that you’re recording. I’m using it every day. It’s satisfying! Obviously, the recording’s volume appears to be quieter, and the input volume slider is fake, it could only make the sound level lower.

I saw the same bare hardware access in some other app, but can’t remember which one.

Of course the device’s mic dynamic range is limited by design, you need a separate mic or audio recorder if you need broader range. My olde Roland R-09 serves me very well.

Also, talking about video, FiLMiC Pro has two options — u can turn off automatic gain compression and voice processing (no idea how the former and latter are different from each other tho :)
Also there’s Mikme, but it’s hardware solution and can’t record loud sounds.

P.S But how did you managed to get multitrack out of the iPhone mic? :)
The file was sent to me, so these are all recommendations I'd have to send to the person who made the track.

I believe he was recording into GarageBand on the iPhone, but I'm not 100% sure. It's also possible he recorded it with a laptop and just used the built in mic. Whatever it was, it was nasty.

I have a couple audio/MIDI interfaces. But I mostly record remotely using a Zoom H2n which sounds great.
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