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How to Use Inter-App Audio

Author: Bradley White | Published: 12/01/2018

If you’ve just started out with iOS music production then you’ll have likely come across Inter-App Audio (IAA). IAA is one of the three ways of connecting your audio apps (along with Audiobus and AUv3), allowing you to take the output of one audio app and put it into another. This allows musicians to use audio apps in conjunction with each other - pretty essential for anyone wanting to do music production on iOS as it allows you to use third party plugins inside your DAW. However, as with Audiobus, you're limited to only loading a single instance of the audio app, meaning that you could only use that app on one track in a project.

In the video below I run through the basics of IAA and show you how to get Inter-App Audio working in several of the most popular IAA host apps: Cubasis, AUM and Beatmaker 3. If you aren’t using any of the apps then don’t fear! IAA is straightforward to implement and the process is pretty similar in every host app.


Prior to Inter-App Audio being introduced by Apple, the only way to connect your audio apps was to download a third party app like Audiobus. However IAA made it easy for musicians to use their audio apps in conjunction with one another. Although an increasing number of apps are now supporting AUv3, many older apps don't have AUv3 capabilities meaning that for now IAA is still relevant.

IAA apps are split into two categories: node apps and host apps. Node apps are the apps that are generating audio - which includes effects and instrument apps. Host apps, meanwhile, are the apps that receive the audio, this includes DAW apps like Cubasis and Garageband.

The only requirement for using IAA is that both of the apps that you’re trying to connect must be IAA compatible as not all audio apps are. You can find a full list of Inter-App Audio compatible apps here.

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