I think nearly every music producer and musician out there all share a giddy excitement for gear. \n\n\n\nI could literally spend hours in a music shop, just looking at all of the different equipment, trying things out, and buying all kinds of great stuff that I'd probably use for ages. \n\n\n\nI know that sometimes finding the right equipment can be a bit jarring, so I made a list of nearly every piece of equipment that I use on a day-to-day basis. \n\n\n\nThe list I've laid out here are in no particular order. Each link will take you to Amazon, and if you purchase any of it, I get a small commission.\n\n\n\nPretty much all of it is compatible with every DAW, as well, not just Garageband. \n\n\n\nI should also add that a few of these products are designed specifically for guitar players, although many of them are not. \n\n\n\nIn each product's headline, I'll state whether it's just for guitar players or not. \n\n\n\nAnyway, without further ado. \n\n\n\n1) iRig HD 2 (For Guitar Players) \n\n\n\nI bought this Audio Interface a few months back and it was a great purchase. For years, I used a Saffire 6 USB which is a fantastic interface as well, but what I like about the iRig HD 2 is its portability. \n\n\n\nI went on vacation to Florida recently and I just stuck my iRig HD 2 in my bag that way I didn't have to cart around my big Focusrite Saffire 6USB. \n\n\n\nAlthough it's a great piece of equipment, I did run into a minor problem at first.\n\n\n\nWhen I first started using it, I found there was a bit of an issue with my MacBook Pro and its ability to recognize the iRig HD 2. \n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nWhat I discovered was that I needed to reboot Garageband with the iRig HD 2 still plugged in, and then suddenly it began recognizing it. \n\n\n\nSince then, I've had no problems and I love it. \n\n\n\nMy only criticism of it is the fact it's made out of plastic rather than steel, but other than that, it's great. \n\n\n\nIt also comes with Amplitube 4 (I think a demo version) and some other plug-ins. But I haven't really used them yet. \n\n\n\nRegardless, I'm glad I bought this because of its convenience and ease of use. \n\n\n\nHere's what it looks like on Amazon. \n\n\n\n2) Acorn Masterkey 49 \n\n\n\n(Make sure you have the USB to USB-C adaptor if your computer is relatively new)\n\n\n\nThis is a 49-key MIDI Keyboard and it's been great for me thus far. There are all kinds of different keyboards to use out there. \n\n\n\nFrom what I've heard, the most popular is the Akai MPK 49 or the Akai Mini, but those are for more "advanced" producers (or simply people with more money to spend). \n\n\n\nI'd recommend just getting a much cheaper MIDI Keyboard to start. It works perfectly. \n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nIt's best to have a few octaves at your disposal, otherwise, there won't be enough range in pitch. \n\n\n\nWhat I mean by that, simply put; a 25-key MIDI keyboard doesn't have enough keys (notes) to suit me.\n\n\n\nI like to make piano riffs using the higher and lower notes of the register, rather than only playing within one or two octaves. \n\n\n\nIf you have only a 25-key keyboard, you don't have the same amount of versatility and thus it inhibits creativity - at least for me anyway. \n\n\n\nCheck the price on Amazon here. \n\n\n\n3) Focusrite Saffire 6USB or the Focusrite Scarlett 2i2\n\n\n\n(The 6USB that I own is no longer available but the Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 is just as good) \n\n\n\nI first purchased this audio interface around 8 or 9 years ago and it still works to this day. There are a few different things between the Focusrite Saffire 6USB and the iRig HD 2. \n\n\n\nFor instance, this is more of a "real" interface, because you can use it with a microphone, bass guitar, and pretty much anything else you want. It's for more than just guitar players. \n\n\n\nYou can also run 2 different instruments at once, rather than the iRig HD 2 which can only work with one bass or a guitar. \n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nAdditionally, it's just a well-built piece of equipment that'll last forever. It's completely made out of steel and a drop or two on the floor shouldn't cause irreversible damage. \n\n\n\nThe Focusrite Saffire 6USB comes with a copy of Ableton I believe, although they may have scrapped that program since I first bought mine nearly ten years ago. \n\n\n\nI should add that I've had this bad boy for over ten years and it still works the same way as it did when I first bought it. \n\n\n\nThe Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 is as good as the 6USB, which is why I recommend it. It's well-built and is a fan favorite. \n\n\n\nHere it is on Amazon. \n\n\n\n4) Metronome \n\n\n\nI use two different metronomes: 1) the "Metronome - BPM & Click Track" from Gismart, and then 2) I also use a real Metronome from Pacquet.\n\n\n\nThe second is a real one from Pacquet, which you can see in the picture below. \n\n\n\nThe link above is to the Wittner metronome, but it's equally as good as the Pacquet. I always prefer the wooden ones to the plastic because they sound a lot better. \n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nThe metronome I've downloaded on my phone is decent. It does the job I need it to, but frankly, a lot of these downloaded metronomes (and other free apps) have the tendency to get annoying. \n\n\n\nThey strike me as mere advertiser platforms that profit from my personal data and information rather than just a harmless little tool. Many of them continuously beg for money as well. \n\n\n\nGismart's Metronome doesn't need a monthly subscription, but it does frequently flash advertisements which can get tedious. \n\n\n\nFor that reason, an actual real-life metronome is pretty useful when playing an instrument, like a guitar, bass, piano, or even just the MIDI keyboard. \n\n\n\nWhile the metronome that comes with Garageband works just fine, a traditional one is simpler to use and inspires me to play. \n\n\n\nNothing beats the actual tool on which the application is based. \n\n\n\nThey usually vary in price from $10 to $150. I would opt for a real wooden metronome because they sound great and they'll last for forever.\n\n\n\nCheck it out here. \n\n\n\n5) Sioti Camera Mount (For Guitar Players) \n\n\n\nThis is probably one of my favorite tools to use. I purchased it off of Amazon a few months back and love it. \n\n\n\nIt never leaves the headstock of my guitar.\n\n\n\nIt's great for making guitar videos for YouTube, Instagram, or wherever you like to upload your content. \n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nRegarding how it's built, it's not the greatest quality in the world, considering all of its components are plastic, but it works and I haven't had any issues with it since I first bought it. \n\n\n\nIt doesn't fall off the headstock either. It's very sturdy in terms of its grip. \n\n\n\nLink Here \n\n\n\n6) Audio Technica ATH-M30x Headphones \n\n\n\nThe Audio Technica ATH-M30x monitors do a good job without costing a lot of money. \n\n\n\nIf you're reading this and wondering why anyone ever recommends headphones like this, to begin with, let me explain it to you using an example. \n\n\n\nMost headphones, like the Dre Beats, for instance, are meant for just casual listening, so the specifications on them have been pre-determined for casual listeners who, in general, like a ton of bass (low-end) in their music. \n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nWhile most audio engineers would argue there is no such thing as "neutral" headphones or monitors, studio headphones at least try to be neutral. \n\n\n\nIn other words, there is no low, mid, or high frequency boosts with studio headphones. They try to offer a more honest view of what the music really sounds like in the mix, in terms of high, low, and mid frequencies. \n\n\n\nYou'll find that if you mix using iPhone headphones or whatever brand, the mixes end up sounding way different on other audio systems. \n\n\n\nFor instance, you may turn up the bass and low frequencies so it sounds great on your iPhone headphones, but then when you play the song in someone's car with a decent sound system, all of a sudden the bass is so overpowering that the song is unlistenable. \n\n\n\nObviously, we don't want this. \n\n\n\nWe want headphones that accurately show what the song sounds like without a mid, low, or high-frequency boost. \n\n\n\nI find that the mixes completed through a good pair of studio monitoring headphones often translate the best to other sound systems. \n\n\n\nIf it sounds well balanced with studio headphones, it'll likely sound pretty good using just iPhone speakers or through a car stereo system. \n\n\n\nThey're worth the purchase. Grab a pair here. \n\n\n\n7) Yorkville or Gearlux Music Stand \n\n\n\nI don't know any music producers that use one of these music stands, but I'm sure many of them have one and I just don't know about it. \n\n\n\nFrankly, I don't know how anyone could play an instrument or read any kind of tablature\/sheet music without having a music stand. \n\n\n\nI use this thing every single day, whether it's for practicing piano, learning a song on the guitar, or just using it to hold stuff. \n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nI even use it to support my clothes hanger when I'm doing laundry. \n\n\n\nWhether you need one of these or not depends on what kind of music producer you are. \n\n\n\nI know there are a lot of guys\/girls out there who have no knowledge of any standard music theory at all, so maybe you don't need it, but I personally love it and couldn't be without it. \n\n\n\nThis particular model is made of steel and is 100% sturdy and reliable. There's hardly any plastic components at all. I've had this stand now for probably 15 years and it's as good as new to this day. \n\n\n\nCheck it out here. \n\n\n\n8) USB to USB-C Adaptor \n\n\n\nNot everyone needs this. It depends on how old your computer is, but I have the latest MacBook Pro and the ports have changed significantly.\n\n\n\nAfter purchasing my MIDI Keyboard, I noticed that I had to buy an adaptor in order to use all of my old equipment. \n\n\n\nIf you want to know the honest truth, I was cursing out Apple for this, but I've since gotten used to the fact that all I need is a simple adaptor to use all of my old stuff. \n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nI could honestly go on a tangent about all of the things Apple has done in the last few years, but I guess we'll save that for another day. \n\n\n\nThus far, I've had the same one now for a year and it still works, so no complaints there.\n\n\n\nLink Here\n\n\n\n9) Snark Super Tight Tuner (For guitar players)\n\n\n\nThis is one of those purchases I've made recently. I love it. I can't believe I've played guitar for most of my life and not had one of these bad boys. \n\n\n\nI don't have to run over to my crate full of equipment, drag out my tuner, and then reattach my cable from my guitar to my tuner whenever I want to tune the guitar. \n\n\n\nIf you're about to record, it's as simple as just hitting the button on the Snark Tuner that's clipped on to the end of your headstock, and then you can start recording knowing you're perfectly in-tune. \n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nIt's also a chromatic tuner as well, so you don't have to worry about being constrained to just standard tuning or other pre-determined tunings.\n\n\n\nDon't get me wrong, my Korg tuners have served me well over the years, but this Snark Tuner is awesome and I 100% recommend it to anybody who plays the guitar. \n\n\n\nThey're pretty inexpensive. \n\n\n\n10) Seagate Backup Plus 1TB - External Hard Drive \n\n\n\nChances are, if you're a beginner music producer using Garageband, you have a MacBook Pro\/Air. You likely don't have a lot of space on your computer. I know I don't. \n\n\n\nAs time goes by, you'll notice that the number of files you've created with Garageband will start to add up and will eventually take up a lot of space on the computer. \n\n\n\nFor that reason, it's best to go out and purchase an external hard drive, because otherwise, you'll run out of space. \n\n\n\nAnd trust me, you will run of out of space. Maybe not today, and maybe not tomorrow, but eventually it'll happen if you're creating a lot of music. \n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nIt seems like one of those things where you really don't need it, but you do, trust me. Of course, it'll be too late when you need an external hard drive. \n\n\n\nIt's not a very exciting purchase, so just grab one the day you run out of space.\n\n\n\nThe one I have is the Backup Seagate Plus, 1TB, I believe, and I have all of my oldest songs written on there. It's definitely worth the purchase, and of course, you can put all kinds of stuff on there, not just old songs.\n\n\n\nMost of my iTunes library is stored on there too.\n\n\n\nIt's on Amazon here. \n\n\n\n11) Right Angle Guitar Jack (For Guitar Players) \n\n\n\nThis is an awesome guitar cable for a simple reason: If you sit on your bed to play and it's running into your audio interface or amplifier, the jack will awkwardly poke into the bed\/stool\/chair and it's not very comfortable. \n\n\n\nA right-angled guitar cable makes it so you can play the guitar wherever and you don't have to worry about the cable pushing against whatever you're sitting on. \n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nThis cable is worth every penny. I'll never have a standard guitar cable again after this one. \n\n\n\nIt's also on Amazon. \n\n\n\n12) USB to Firewire Cable \n\n\n\nIf you've purchased an Acorn Masterkey-49, you'll get one of these cables that connect directly from the back of the keyboard into your computer.\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n It's worth picking up another one of these, just in case you lose one or it breaks. \n\n\n\nHere's the current price on Amazon. \n\n\n\n13) Google Home \n\n\n\n(Not available on Amazon, but you could grab the Echo Plus instead, although I can't personally verify that it works as well)\n\n\n\nThis one is kind of optional, but I use it all of the time to check and see how my mixes sound on a less-than-optimal speaker system. \n\n\n\nFor instance, after I've mixed and mastered a song, I'll play it through the Google Home for a quick sound check. \n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nIf it sounds good on this thing, it probably sounds good on everything. \n\n\n\n14) Digitech Whammy Pedal (For Guitar Players) \n\n\n\nThe Digitech Whammy Pedal is one of Tom Morello's favorites. This thing is a ton of fun to use, although it's somewhat of a clunky beast. \n\n\n\n\n\n\n\nIt must weigh around 3 pounds and it's a bit of a pain to carry around, but it's one of those pieces of equipment that makes playing the guitar a lot of fun. \n\n\n\nIt also has a handy feature where you can quickly drop into other tunings without touching the guitar's actual tuning. \n\n\n\nCheck the price on Amazon here. \n\n\n\n15) Mark Sarnecki's 'The Complete Elementary Music Rudiments' + Answer Book\n\n\n\nEven though I took guitar lessons for a few years as a teenager, the vast majority of the music theory I learned was with this book and a few others. \n\n\n\nMark Sarnecki's The Complete Elementary Music Rudiments explains the concepts well and the answer book that comes with it is equally as important. \n\n\n\n(I don't have the book on me so this picture will have to do)\n\n\n\nI can't stress enough how great this stuff is to learn. You don't have to be Beethoven to benefit from learning a bit of music theory.\n\n\n\n Just learn the basics. You'll be floored with how useful it is, not only as a composer but also as a musician, in general. \n\n\n\nYou may even find that you enjoy learning these concepts and choose to go even deeper into theory. \n\n\n\nIf that's the cases, I recommend you check out another free piece of content called, Music Theory For Musicians and Normal People by Toby R. Rush. You can easily find the PDF for this book online.\n\n\n\nJust as an added note, in the case of the Mark Sarnecki book, it's important to grab both the Question and Answer texts. \n\n\n\nLink To Main Book Here\n\n\n\nAnswer Book Here\n\n\n\nConclusion \n\n\n\nThat's all for now. I hope you like some of the products here as much as I do.\n\n\n\nFor a more comprehensive article on some of the best gear out there, look at my recommended gear page.