We all scoffed at the idea of the iPad when it was first announced. Now, it’s one of the most sought-after electronics for both professionals as well as children.
For the musician, it’s an invaluable tool for teaching, reading sheet music, and checking social media on the go. However, it’s capable of so much more! My iPad mini has completely replaced my laptop for my touring computer. Here’s a list of my top 5 iPad accessories for musicians.
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1. Apogee MiC – $230
The Apogee MiC is one of those tools that you didn’t realize you needed until you have one. The sound quality is quite impressive, and the additional feature of the onboard premp is amazing. If you’re like me and carry your iPad with you everywhere, it’s awesome to be able to record demos, live shows, and even YouTube videos with high-quality sound.
Wait, YouTube videos too? Yup! With the Apogee MiC plugged-in, any video you record will use the external microphone to record audio. Having such a mobile recording solution for both audio and video is fantastic. If you don’t have Garageband, you can download the free and easy to use Tape App by Focusrite which not only records but can do some quick and dirty mastering to make the most out of your tracks.
2. iTrack Dock – $300
Ok, so you want a mobile recording solution that allows you record using inputs beyond a single microphone. Maybe you want to record the direct feed from the soundboard on your iPad. If that’s the case, check out the iTrack Dock. The studio package (pictured above) comes with a microphone and monitor headset as well. The iTrack Dock is compatible with both the iPad Air and the iPad Mini.
3. Zagg Rugged Folio Keyboard Case – $150
Getting a keyboard case for my iPad allowed me ditch the laptop while on short-run tours. Afterall, the main reason why I needed a laptop was to make E-mailing and writing social media updates easier. Sure going iPad-only has its limitations, but you’ll be surprised by how the convenience of the tablet will supersede them. Also, it’s a great way to get people to sign your mailing list without having to decipher scribbles on a piece of paper.
I did a lot of research on different keyboard cases, and the Zagg Rugged Folio Keyboard Case one is easily the best of them all in terms of durability and versatility.
Sometimes, you need protection over all else. Festivals, outdoor shows, rainy days, etc. From my research, the Griffin Survivor Case is the best I could find for all-around protection. It’s not as much of a pain to get on and off as people make it seem, but the rubbery material makes it stick to things. Bad for bags, good for grip. The other selling points for me were the included screen protector (it’s a part of the case) and the surprisingly versatile kickstand.
5. Square card reader – FREE
Wait, you’re a musician and you DON’T have a Square card reader for your merch?? But they’re free! And with the addition of offline mode, you can take orders even when you don’t have mobile internet/WiFi connection! It’s also a convenient way to tracking your inventory and sales since you can include cash sales for accounting purposes. Get on it!
Have any other ideas that I missed? Please share them in the comments section below!