iPad live!

January 30, 2013 7:13 PM

Anyone using an iPad in their live setup?

Hey, y'all, does anyone use an iPad in their live setup? I'd probably use it for synths and a few beat-type things more than anything else and was just going to run an 1/8" to 1/4" cable out to a DI to level out the sound. Was wondering how yours was set up if you're using it.
posted by sleepy pete (5 comments total)

I haven't used mine live yet but I'm planning to. I'm using the USB camera connection kit to connect a midi keyboard and/or USB audio interface, which drives Sampletank or something similar. Then, as you say, 1/8" out to a DI box or similar. I also have the iRig Pre so I can use a mic.

Our drummer uses a Zendrum into iRig Midi into Sampletank/Garageband.
posted by unSane at 7:23 PM on January 30, 2013

Well, DI's don't really "level out" the sound, if by "level out" you mean "make everything coming out of the iPad about the same volume."

They do change the level (and impedance) so the signal from the iPad plays nice with the microphone-level XLR inputs of most mixing boards.

But yeah, 1/8" to 1/4" to DI is absolutely a fine way to go. I do live sound for a living and we've got at least a couple of these cables in every system that goes out because we so often have to hook up a laptop or iPod or iPad.

The only thing you might want to keep in mind is stereo vs. mono. The 1/8" headphone out of the iPad is stereo or TRS (tip-ring-sleeve), but most DI's out there use only a mono or TS 1/4" jack, so if you plug a straightforward stereo 1/8 --> stereo 1/4 cable (or mono 1/8 to mono 1/4) into a DI you'll lose one side of your iPad output. Which might not actually matter, depending on the sounds you're using.

If it does make a difference, you could get something like the Radial ProAV 1 DI that properly sums a stereo signal down to a single XLR.

Or you could just get a "splitter" cable (1/8" stereo to 2 RCA, like this), stick a couple of RCA to mono 1/4" adapters (like this) on the ends, and use 2 DI's.
posted by soundguy99 at 8:07 AM on February 1, 2013

Also there are plenty of stereo DIs out there, some with RCA connectors.
posted by unSane at 9:21 AM on February 1, 2013 [1 favorite]

thanks to the two of you. i have a stereo DI at the house, so I'll probably run that. And, yeah, I meant the impedance, not necessarily the level. Bad phrasing.
posted by sleepy pete at 10:40 PM on February 11, 2013

I used my iPad precisely once, live. It was running Amplitube for guitar, and it was for the one song in the set that needed a guitar. For just one song, it definitely beat bringing the whole guitar rig.
posted by chimaera at 12:44 PM on February 13, 2013

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