Last Updated on December 23, 2020.
Mobile apps are fantastic for music production. Being able to compose a melody or mix a song on the go is really easy now!
I’ve tried many apps and to be honest, most of them aren’t that great. This is why I created this list, so you don’t have to do as much research and try the ones that suck, like I did!
Here are the best music making apps for Andriod and iOS devices;
1. Music Maker Jam (Android, iOS)
Music Maker Jam is one of most widely used application for making music on Android.
This app lets you create your own tracks using various loops, beats and other instrumental sources.
It has more than 100 music styles available (such as hip hop, dub-step, rock, funk, trap, drum & bass, techno, etc.)
More than ten FREE Mix Packs with over 2000 loops available in the Music Maker JAM store.
It’s a really fun and easy app to use.
Once you created a song or a part you like, you can export it and this way you will be able to load it into any DAW and add it to any song you got going or simply add some stuff to it like vocals.
2. Caustic 3 (Android, iOS)
Caustic 3 uses Synthesizers and simulations to create sequenced music.
It is a very simple app to use, it’s very Intuitive.
You can play the beat on Caustic and open a standalone wav editor while the beat is playing & record yourself, in this case you’ll want to use headphones so you can keep your vocal & the actual beat separate before mixing them together.
With Caustic 3 you can export:
- .WAV: Uncompressed 44KHz 16bit stereo file, compatible with most audio software and players.
- .OGG: Ogg-Vorbis compressed 44KHz stereo file, compatible with most portable MP3 players.
- .MID: MIDI music file, contains basic note and timing information, along with machine names and structure. Compatible with most Digital Audio Worstation software (DAW)
3. Garageband (iOS Only)
Garageband is an amazing DAW that comes free with any iOS device, if you own a Mac or an iPhone, you will have access to it.
It is, essentially, a stripped-down version of Logic Pro X but completely free.
Garageband is a great place to start if you want to learn about multitrack recording, using MIDI and essentially mixing, before spending a lot of money on expensive software.
With Garageband, not only can you produce a song on your computer, but you also can produce an entire song using only your cellphone, since you have all the tools you need right there.
So, if you own an iPhone and you want to record only using that device, definitely get Garageband, it’s fantastic.
4. Stagelight (Android, iOS)
Stagelight comes with an incredibly easy to use drum machine which allows you to make your own beats or you can load one from a huge number of presets.
Every sound of the drum machine can easily be changed and tweaked.
You can add Audio, Instrument, MIDI and Send tracks.
On the Audio track you can record stuff yourself or you can add some audio samples provided by the software.
After you created your Audio and MIDI tracks you can export them to be used with another DAW.
Stagelight is a great piece of software, it’s not only an iOS and Android app, but it can be used across all platforms, from smartphones to PC’s.
5. Walk band (Android, iOS)
Walk band is a very basic, yet good sounding app that allows you to compose songs.
The included instruments are Piano, Drum Kit, Drum Machine, Guitar and Bass.
The setup is very basic, but it sounds really good.
It allows you to select the chords you want and then all you need to do is tap on them to create the structure of the song.
The guitar has the option to switch between chords and solo, which will let you to create some cool melodies.
You can export the midi file, but the only way I found to do it is by using the share function and sharing it through Dropbox.
Still, it’s a great app and it’s free, make sure to give it a try.
6. nTrack studio (Android, iOS)
nTrack Studio works as a DAW, you can add audio or MIDI tracks, you also have a couple of different sounds and effects available to use.
On the free version you can’t export any kind of files though, which is a big con, also you are only allowed to use a certain amount of effects. Compressor, Delay and Phaser are excluded.
The only way you can share your music if you are using the free version is by uploading it to SongTree, which the app allows.
7. Groovebox (iOS Only)
Groovebox is a beat and synth music creation tool. If you’re into electronic music, definitely give it a shot!
The synths sound great, so do the drums! You can get punchy mixes going in no time while creating the patterns yourself or importing the included ones.
It’s very easy to use, the interface is very intuitive.
The great thing about Groovebox is that it will get you going in no time, and the way you change and improve the song you’re composing is very easy and straightforward.
Definitely try it out!
8. Bandlab (Android, iOS)
Bandlab is an online collaboration tool and app that allows musicians to work on a track together from anywhere in the world.
If you record a couple of instruments for your song but don’t know how to add good keyboards, or guitar, bass, or any other instrument, you could get another musician, who is already on Bandlab, to do this for you.
It comes with a variety of virtual instruments, like bass, drums and keyboards, which you can all use to create really cool music.
Audio tracks can also be recorded, as well as instrument tracks like guitar and bass while connected directly to the device.
Once you created a track or a project you can save it, download it to your device or share it.
Bandlab is a fantastic tool for any musician. You can create songs anywhere, download the tracks to use them with another DAW on your pc, and even share them and allow people to work on them with you.
This is my favorite app on this whole list, you should definitely give it a try.
Bandlad also created my favorite free DAW which is called Cakewalk.
9. Reason compact (iOS Only)
First let me make one thing clear, this isn’t Reason for iOS.
It’s actually a version of Europa, which is its flagship synthesizer that ships with Reason 10 and is also available as a plugin for the desktop.
Note: Reason Compact is only available for iOS devices.
It’s a very good and easy to use synthesizer which makes programming on the move a lot more fun.
You can download it for free, but in order to unlock its full potential you will need to spend just a little.
Sound packs cost $0.99, and to enable full editability you will need to spend $9.99.
Luckily, you can try all of this in demo mode before spending a dime.
Still, the free version is awesome, and it allows you to very quickly program sounds on the synth, but it is just that, a synth, no beats or anything.
You can link it to other apps or export to the desktop if you want to use the sounds you created in a song.
All in all, I think that you should try this app out since you can test everything before actually buying it.
10. Aubade Sound Studio (Android Only)
This one is only good for doing some multitrack recordings, all you can do is record the sound being picked up by your microphone.
But it’s a good option if all you need to do is record a couple of acoustic guitars and vocals.
Since latency can be an issue, they made it really easy to move the tracks around a bit to get them to sync-up with the others, which comes in handy.
A couple of effects are also included.
This one is a good and simple mobile “DAW”.
11. Soundtrap (Android, iOS)
I already covered this one in my Best Free DAWs post, and it’s an amazing a lightweight app that you can also access directly on your PCs browser.
Soundtrap is a DAW-like app that let’s you record music directly from the phone’s built-in mic, as well as give you access to a couple virtual instruments and effects.
The only downside is that in order to unlock certain features like Auto Tune, Automation, etc., you will need to pay a monthly subscription.
But if you’re just using the features that are provided for free, you should be able to create a couple cool songs.
Soundtrap is by no means an App that will let you create professional-sounding music, but if you need to record some ideas and have the ability to mix different tracks together and add effects to them, it should get the job done.
12. Zenbeats by Roland (Android, iOS)
Zenbeats is a DAW that can be used on any PC or MAC, as well as iPads, iPhones and any Android device.
Once you download it you’ll have to register and activate the account, but that’s all you really have to do!
After this you will have access to all the functionality the DAW has to offer, as well as some included beats, samples, and more.
Now, Zenbeats is mostly geared towards electronic music production; however, it’s also capable of recording audio regularly and you can also process it in many ways.
When you load an Audio Track you can also select loops from a pretty big list and add them to it.
As far as the interface goes, it’s super clean! There’s just nothing that gets in the way, which is something I absolutely love!
It features a couple virtual instruments such as; electro guitar, bass, organ, synth, and even a sampler.
All in all, I think that Zenbeats can be very useful for beginners who are eager to learn more about electronic music production.
The next two apps on the list are for DJ’s only.
13. Dj studio 5 (Android only)
DJ Studio 5 is a free DJ Mixing desk app that allows you use your mobile device as if it were an actual Mixer.
You can choose any audio file you have on your phone and import it.
Once they are loaded, you will be able to choose a couple of different options, from sound effects, Equalizers, phasers, etc. to samples and more.
The workflow is really intuitive, you won’t have a hard time using this app at all.
It even comes with an auto mix function which works surprisingly well.
After you created a mix you can simply save it to your phone’s memory.
A couple of the DJ Studio 5 features are;
- 2 turntables with crossfader
- Disc physics, which allow you to “scratch”
- Add in some Pre-Cueing with headphones
- 10 customizable sample pads
- Effects like Flanger, Phaser, Gate, Reverb, Bit crusher, 3D, Brake and FlippingDouble included
- 3 band EQ for each Deck
- Beat based loops, which allow you to loop a section to add effects
14. Edjing DJ Mixer (Android, iOS)
Edjing DJ Mixer is a very cool platform that allows you to seamlessly mix two songs together and mess around with them, like you would with an actual mixing desk.
The free version will definitely get you going, but the pro version also comes with some added perks.
Within each deck’s playback pane, you get an EQ and an FX panel, which allows you to control the sound to your liking.
You can import any song from your library, Google Drive, One Drive, etc.
It’s a pretty cool DJ mixing app!
Here’s an entire post about the best mobile apps for DJs; check it out!
Premium Mobile Music Production Apps
Here I will list two apps that I think are absolutely worth it if you are willing to spend between $15 and $50.
FL Studio Mobile (Android, iOS)
Including a MiniSynth with 70 presets, 133 instruments, step sequencer, 10 effects, pitch blending, sampling, wave editor, and more, I think that FL Studio Mobile is an excellent choice for anyone who wants to be able to create music on their phone and also to mix it.
It is, essentially, a full DAW on your phone that lets you create music and share it in no time.
If I had to choose, I’d recommend FL Studio Mobile, but only if you have the money to spare.
Cubasis (iOS Only)
While more expensive than FL Studio Mobile, it also packs more of a punch.
Cubasis offers unlimited MIDI tracks, 24 assignable ins and outs, resolution up to 24-bit / 96 kHz, a mixer with effects, MIDI and audio loops built-in, a sample and key editor, and much more.
It is, basically, a mini version of Cubase, and it actually comes with most of its features, which I find amazing.
However, it’s a bit more expensive than FL Studio Mobile and it’s only available for iOS devices.
You can find Cubasis here.
Some of these apps are completely free while some others require you to purchase the premium packages in order to enjoy everything they have to offer.
Still, you should try them out and see how you like them.
I personally use BandLab quite a lot, I really enjoy it!
Groovebox is also fantastic!
Let me know which one your favorite is!
See you in the next one!
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