Thanks to the Apple Camera Connection Kit, a range of audio interfaces can be used with the iPad 2
The iPad 2 has begun a new era of ultra portable music making. With inexpensive apps, and its flexible, intuitive interface, the iPad 2 can be anything from a synthesiser to a full, multi-track studio. If you need to get audio into an iPad, however, the available standard input has somewhat limited capabilities. There are dedicated iPad interfaces, however, such as the superb Alesis IO Dock, but the options are still slightly limited when compared to the range available for regular computer users.
The Apple Camera Connection Kit redresses this significantly however. Adding a USB socket to an iPad 2, this device allows any class compliant USB audio interface to be connected and used with audio apps. There are some caveats, however. The device has to be class compliant, as previously stated, and has to be USB 1.0 compatible (i.e. not USB 2.0 only), and must use less than 200ma of current, or be able to be powered via an external power supply, whether that is via a PSU of powered USB hub. And, this also works for class compliant MIDI devices, too.
The list of devices with which this will work is a little limited at the moment, but here are some that have been confirmed by users to work…
Samson C01U USB Microphone
The Samson CO1U has long been a bestseller here at Dawsons. This USB condenser microphone is a superb, high quality means of getting a high quality audio signal into your iPad or iPhone.
The versatility of the Zoom H4n seems to have no end. A pocket sized, handheld field recorder, it also doubles as an audio interface. And now, it seems, it will work as interface for iPad, too!
Korg nanoKEY, nanoPAD and nanoKONTROL
The excellent, ultra-portable nanoKEY, nanoPAD and nanoKONTROL MIDI controllers are ideal companions to the iPad, and great value, to boot.
The list of devices that have been tested by users is growing, and these are just a few that have been confirmed by users as compatible. There are, however, some apps that aren’t working yet with these external devices (the Apps must use CoreAudio rather than open AL, to be specific). If you are aiming to use a class compliant interface with an iPad 2, therefore, speak to the specialists at a Dawsons store or by calling our customer service team (01925 582420).
Joe is a contributor for the Dawsons Music blog. Specialising in product reviews and crafting content to help and inspire musicians of all musical backgrounds.