iPad USB Audio Interface Coming

ipad-usb-audioiPad Music Software: The Apple iPad could soon support USB audio interfaces, according to a posting on the Apple Core Audio API Mailing List from Apple software engineering manager William Stewart.

According to Stewart:

  • Class-compliant USB audio devices will be supported through the USB dongle from the iPad Camera Connection Kit,
  • The iPad will support USB-Audio 1.0 class specification only, supporting full speed.
  • iPad docks may be able to support USB Audio device I/O.
  • Low-power audio interfaces will be able to run off the iPad, otherwise you will need a powered hub or device power.
  • The interface will suport 16bit audio. 24bit may be supported later.

At this point, USB audio support on the iPad is a rumor, because no official announcement has been made.  Nevertheless, a lot of people are excited about the idea of connecting standard USB audio interfaces to the Apple iPad using the iPad Camera Connection Kit.

USB audio support for the iPad is “nice-to-have”, but not essential.

If you want your iPad to have audio interface support and a hardware keyboard and to be able to run desktop music applications – you’re probably better off just buying a much more powerful Apple laptop.

USB audio support may also be a distraction from understanding the unique new strengths of the iPad as a tool for music. I’m more interested in discovering what the iPad can do that is new than in trying to make it do all the stuff we can already do with laptops.

The iPad Camera Connection Kit is scheduled for release later this month, so it shouldn’t be long until the rumored iPad USB audio interface support rumor is tested out.

In the meantime – leave a comment and let us know what you think of the possibility of connecting USB audio devices to the Apple iPad!

via MacRumors, CDM


22 thoughts on “iPad USB Audio Interface Coming

  1. The iPad has a touch screen. An Apple laptop does not. So that already opens up new musical possibilities. USB audio interface support should be made available so these can be explored, especially in a live context.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  2. USB 1.0? How is that going to perform. I mean, if USB 2.0 sucks, then this is going to be really lame…
    I fully agree on the iPad vs. Laptop thing. The iPad might be interesting as a controller device, but for serious audio stuff you should just use a laptop… or some dedicated hardware…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  3. Not sure why people are wetting their pants over adding USB audio to the iPad.

    Do you really want to do multitrack audio recording on an iPad? Isn't that sort of asinine?

    Next you're going to need some hard disk space for the garguantaun audio files.

    Oh! But you can't hook a hard drive up to it!

    Let's do HD video editing on it!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  4. Not sure why people are wetting their pants over adding USB audio to the iPad.

    Do you really want to do multitrack audio recording on an iPad? Isn't that sort of asinine?

    Next you're going to need some hard disk space for the garguantaun audio files.

    Oh! But you can't hook a hard drive up to it!

    Let's do HD video editing on it!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  5. I have to agree that any application that atually produces audio out of an iPad is going to be very basic and limited and not playing to it's strengths.

    The only thing that really sets the iPad apart from other similar gadgets (tablets or netbooks) is the multi-touch screen and exploiting this feature for control of other gear is where I think we will see the truly interesting applications.

    TouchOSC is a great example and is so far only app that would actually make me want an iPad. (If I could get over all my other objections to Apple which is unlikely)

    (Look Ma! I made a positive and reasonable comment about the iPad!)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  6. I have to agree that any application that atually produces audio out of an iPad is going to be very basic and limited and not playing to it's strengths.

    The only thing that really sets the iPad apart from other similar gadgets (tablets or netbooks) is the multi-touch screen and exploiting this feature for control of other gear is where I think we will see the truly interesting applications.

    TouchOSC is a great example and is so far only app that would actually make me want an iPad. (If I could get over all my other objections to Apple which is unlikely)

    (Look Ma! I made a positive and reasonable comment about the iPad!)

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  7. check out touchOSC, just use it as a controller.

    However, an ipod touch would make a brilliant location sound recorder. Why no box with XLR and self battery supply? Killer app.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  8. If the iPad would support audio interface and also be able to use it at the same time as the built in audio, thus giving it 2 stereo pairs out, it would be the ultimate DJ too. At least if things like mixr (www.ipadmixr.com) prove to be well designed. Having 2 separate stereo audio outputs is essential for cueing and listening to tracks that you're not currently playing.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  9. If the iPad would support audio interface and also be able to use it at the same time as the built in audio, thus giving it 2 stereo pairs out, it would be the ultimate DJ too. At least if things like mixr (www.ipadmixr.com) prove to be well designed. Having 2 separate stereo audio outputs is essential for cueing and listening to tracks that you're not currently playing.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  10. Hello, I have been checking your website for some time now and read most or your posts. Is there any way that I can subscribe so I get updates sent to my email? Thankyou

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  11. The Zoom H2 is half the price of an iPad and doesn't require outboard gear to get the job done.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  12. I would rather not bring my $3000 laptop to gigs with drunks, degenerates and darkness as a live audio recorder or to rehearsals as the draft multitracker. The laptop is for less hostile environments where we still want to make Logic or Pro-Tools portable but not in places where we step around the puke. The iPad's interface is bigger and brighter than the cheaper dedicated flash audio recorders but it is still extremely portable and useful as a lot of other things and it puts less on the line to accomplish the same thing.

    Audio, even multi tracking, doesn't take huge processing power. We were doing it in the 90's with 100 Mhz computers and 300 megabyte hard drives. . . so none of this should be a big deal. Apple might even be smart to release a scaled down iPad version of garage band with just the recording and midi capabilities and no drive hogging audio loops. If I could plug my M-audio fast track pro into the iPad it could make a nice little micro setup that is easier to operate, does more than dedicated recorders and puts far less expensive hardware on the line.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  13. I would rather not bring my $3000 laptop to gigs with drunks, degenerates and darkness as a live audio recorder or to rehearsals as the draft multitracker. The laptop is for less hostile environments where we still want to make Logic or Pro-Tools portable but not in places where we step around the puke. The iPad's interface is bigger and brighter than the cheaper dedicated flash audio recorders but it is still extremely portable and useful as a lot of other things and it puts less on the line to accomplish the same thing.

    Audio, even multi tracking, doesn't take huge processing power. We were doing it in the 90's with 100 Mhz computers and 300 megabyte hard drives. . . so none of this should be a big deal. Apple might even be smart to release a scaled down iPad version of garage band with just the recording and midi capabilities and no drive hogging audio loops. If I could plug my M-audio fast track pro into the iPad it could make a nice little micro setup that is easier to operate, does more than dedicated recorders and puts far less expensive hardware on the line.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  14. The Zoom H2 is half the price of an iPad and doesn't require outboard gear to get the job done.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  15. The Zoom H2 is half the price of an iPad and doesn't require outboard gear to get the job done.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  16. @Plisko….Exactly what I would use it for as well. Leave the $3000 MacBookPro at home and run Multi audio tracks on a lite version of Logic would be great.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  17. Hi All,

    Support for an USB Audio Interface is nothing else but great! It's true that multi track recording is not what you want on an iPad, but the great thing is that the sound quality of the iPad can be greatly improved with a good USB interface! So every live sound technician or musician is able to use high-quality DA-conversion, which will make a major difference in low frequency response, intelligibility and overall musical clearity. In addition, it will be possible to use hi-quality AD-converters and mic-pre's so you can use it for live sampling or for hi-res room analysis. It's really great is it works!!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  18. Dear Flancher, I'm a musician and I always need to record: rehearsals, live concerts, ideas when playing or composing… I am doing it with my netbook, but a tablet would be even more easy to carry around in live gigs and rehearsal rooms. And with direct mp3 encoding (I have it on my mp3 player that I bough many years ago, and I can record up 7 hours of music at 320kbps with just 1GB of memory) hard disk space would not be an issue. You could do some simple editing and processing, and finish your work when you're home. Now I know that there are dedicated devices that you could buy to record, but if your tablet (wether it is an ipad, android or whatever) could do it… why not?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  19. Hey not to go off topic but can anyone give me overview of. New York Car Insurance Reform 295 Greenwich St, New York, NY 10007 (646) 351-0824 They are down the block from me. I was wondering if they were a good insurance company. I need to get coverage, it is regulations you know, but I need to have a good price price plus I’d prefer friendly service.

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