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Has Apple's iPad Become
The New Portable VO Studio?
By Trey Thomas
Voice Actor
Many of us use laptops with a solid USB mic or digital audio interface like the MicPort Pro.
All you have to do is load your favorite DAW, hit RECORD, edit and then email the final product.
It's a great way to record those all-important sessions or auditions while on the go.
iPAD for iGO ...
But what if you could soon use an iPad as a portable voice over studio?
Well, the fine folks at Apogee recently announced something that could make recording on the go both cheaper and lighter. It's called the Mike.
Apogee claims it is "the most compact studio quality USB microphone available for iPad, iPhone and Mac."
The online press release even says it's "Great for voice overs, interviews and podcast recordings."
I know that Blue already makes the Mikey for the iPod and iPhone, but it only works with certain Apple models.
What really intrigues me about Apogee's Mike is the ability to use a high quality microphone with the iPad.
The Mike has not been released yet, and we don't even know its price. But I can't imagine it being more than a couple hundred bucks.
The website simply says coming soon.
As both an Apogee and Apple customer (I own a MacBook Pro and a Duet interface), I know it makes quality products that compliment Apple hardware.
Now, this is not an endorsement of Apogee or Apple. To each his own, I always say.
But imagine the ability to record your voice overs on something as cheap and light as the $500 entry level iPad.
Apple also recently released the acclaimed GarageBand for the iPad for just five bucks.
If you include the potential cost of the Mike, an iPad and GarageBand, you could spend well under a thousand dollars for a portable studio that's lighter and less bulky than the typical laptop, mic and interface setup.
Not to mention the fact that you could use the iPad's generous screen to read your scripts from. How cool is that?
The possibilities are endless!
I honestly have been looking for a reason to buy an iPad. And with the announcement of Apogee's Mike and the release of the iPad 2, I may have just found my excuse.

Trey Thomas is a 20-year broadcasting veteran, with broad experience as announcer, writer, reporter and news anchor, including work with CNN and CBS, NBC and FOX TV affiliates. Entering voice overs in 2001 “between a TV and radio gig,” he has performed in commercials, promos, documentaries and government training videos. Represented by Jeffrey Umberger of the Umberger Agency, he continues to train and maintains that “professional development is a high priority for me.”



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Comments (8)
Nick Terry
7/23/2011 at 2:56 PM
I will look out for this!

Wendy Brown...I have the Blue Yeti Pro and an iPad with GarageBand...make sure you get the right USB hub (the only I've found to work is the Belkin Model #F4U016). The Yeit is heavy, around 3-4lbs, so if you're traveling, be sure and use the box it came in, with the Styrofoam, or some kind of supportive box/bag. I traveled with mine and was constantly worrying. Airport security was no fun either; I was stopped for about 25 minutes on my outbound flight; they wanted to take it apart. I said "if you do, and I put it back together and it doesn't work, who will buy me a new one?" Finally after showing them on the internet what it was, they let me go...I got lucky. It's an easy setup with the iPad though...not the most compact mic to travel with and set up on a whim.

Looking forward to this new Mike device! Thanks for the post, Trey!
Wendy Brown
7/11/2011 at 8:52 PM
I've been doing research on this and the Yeti Pro is being used for the Ipad. All you need is a Power USB hub (about $20) and the Apple camera kit to hook it all up. I'm considering getting an Ipad to record on the road and this mic looks like a good option as it HAS to sound as good as my home setup.
Billy James
3/18/2011 at 4:37 PM
As a rule, Apogee makes very good hardware, so the Mike is worth watching. Of course, this is a company known for digital interfaces, not microphones, so we won't really know if this is a game-changer until somebody actually gets their hands on one.

Until Mike hits the streets, the AT2020 and the Blue Snowball are two USB mics that are reported to work with the iPad Camera Connection Kit gizmo. (And due to the iPad connector's picky-ness about power consumption, there aren't many mics that do.)
Dan Lenard
3/16/2011 at 10:51 AM
Having just bought the new iPad 2, this is the news I wanted to hear. Can't wait to try it.
Joel Richards
3/16/2011 at 9:08 AM
Damn you Trey! I keep working on reasons NOT to buy the iPad but I'm with you on this one. For a portable "use-in-pinch" this would awesome. I too use a Macbook (well mini when I'm at home) with a duet. If this new Mic has the Apogee sound and not something tinny like a lot USB mics I'm all for it.

Seriously, thanks for the good idea.
Dave Courvoisier
3/16/2011 at 12:57 AM
That's great Trey ... sounds like we're kindred geek spirits. But if you'd like to read an evaluation of some portable iPhone/iPad-related equipment that is actually already RELEASED ... check out my blog on the iRig Mic:

It's not perfect, but it's a possibility!

(aka Dave Courvoisier)
George Whittam
3/16/2011 at 12:35 AM
Thanks for popping this up on my radar, Trey. I'll be anxious to hear it in the wild someday. I know a few clients like Linda Ristig who are chompin' at the bit for something like this, if it lives up to the Apogee name!
Linda Ristig
3/15/2011 at 3:56 PM
Hi Trey!

Thanks for sharing the tip about "mike." My iPad has become invaluable to me, and I'm looking forward to learning more about the Apogee mic when it's officially released. When you take the plunge to get your iPad, you are going to love it!
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