Recording in Ableton
We'll talk about recording mixing, mastering, conceiving your you're conceiving your mix, shaping it and then solidifying it um we're going to look at a couple different work flows for rick ordering whatever, whether you're recording for ah a band or maybe just yourself and you're doing one instrument of time there's a couple different ways they do that and there's some good ways to do it. You, um I'm going to also discuss some sort of mixing as ugo principles a lot of the process of particularly if you're making elektronik music and you're doing it by yourself and you're doing a lot of the instrumentation um, you couldn't do a lot of the mixing as you go and also, you know, the sound design is a big part of that process, so there's a there's a few principles that you can keep in mind as you're making music and that will help your mix down stage be a lot easier we're going, we're going to prepare a final mix down um and justus we would in a studio and then we're going to actually do ah...
a rough master on it uh and something we just want to keep in mind is that get each sound that we choose is going to need to have its own place and that's, you know, this is something I I continuously discusses the palate being unique and wide and interesting and different and the more character and unique character the each of those sounds have in our in our environment then uh the better your overall mix will turn out and we'll also discuss some of the precedents for a loudness and resolution that currently exist that in goals that we want to set tio aim for s so that we can be loud enough and clear and have the high school oly files as possible. So as faras routing and arming tracks enable tangos it's pretty simple to record on attract you do need to have it armed and essentially that happens at the bottom of of the of the mixer in session view and along the side so if you were going to be recording into a track I you will need tio have armed and activated so uh by default able tonight is set up to for for just one person recording and meaning when you click another track it will toggle uh they're recording off on that on that track. So um in some scenarios though, maybe I'm recording the jazz band at the coffee shop or something and I have multiple mikes and I've got some other kind of multi channel set up that I need to change I'm gonna want to uh teo change in the region your preferences go into the record warp and launch tab and there is an option here um and it will allow you to, uh change believe it's your insurance you can turn off arm and I believe that will allow you to select more than one track at once so that will turn that toggle madoff so if you're in a position where you're changing which tracks you're recording on and or maybe you're just like tohave yeah maybe you're sampling in different ways or um and you would prefer that have that option then you can you can adjust that in your preferences and there's also some other recording preferences here such as the rev the resolution right now I'm working at twenty four bit which is a fairly good bit depth higher than your normal cd that's about what dvd is uh most mastering engineers recommend working at thirty two but if your machine will will work well at that rate and so recording at that rate and also rendering your mix downs for mastering um bit depth directly influences the the head room before you will start distorting so with a higher bit rate file or are that's that would be a word length in data terms you can actually have ah technically louder file without clipping uh that's just the word length for however many snapshots there are per second or however many uh times that there is ah snapshot of that word length taken said and that would be the sample rate um which is up to you know cd quality would be forty four thousand one hundred times a second or forty one forty four point one hurts our kilohertz and uh t v d would be uh is forty eight so and you can work you can also work at a higher sampling rate believe ninety six k is the recommended for thirty two bit ninety six kilohertz sampling great is the recommended resolution toe work at in a mixed down environment and of for uh for recording as well so I haven't recorded a whole lot of audio I've got mostly soft things going on s o I'm while I'm in here I'm actually going to go ahead and change over to ninety six hey um see yeah alot of my um all of my sounds in this project are are either samples or or their many instruments okay, so there's a couple ways to record you can record and clips and session mode right now on my return but my send buses sunday return post is covering that up um you can read return record clips into the session mode or you can go straight into arrangement and recording straight into arrangement has some options um but for the for sort of more of a comping scenario or if you're if you're taking a doing a bunch of vocal takes and you want to pull bits and pieces out of all of those I think that session mode is going to be your best bet, so one thing I like to do is I will uh I will loop a part of an arrangement and I will start I will record in session mode and just let it loop a lot of times this will give the vocalist or instrumentalist sometime teo kind of improv or freestyle and I just keep it relax and then give them give them the ability to kind of to do some sort of b roll kind of stuff and then also they can do there there there versus or whatever they're takes back to back and get kind of getting their flow at their own leisure. Um, let's, see, so looks like my input devices and armed right now, so I'm just going to set my input and I'll set that up out to be a separate headphone output now that we have the, uh, the headphone output sent to our instrumentalist or a vocalist, we can start recording them. So what I'll do is I'll just aa lot of times I like to just fire off the clip in the session view, and we're sending them the signal they can start doing their warm ups and they can start feeling the track and and experimenting with it, and then once they're ready, they can just start singing or playing and, uh e I like to present in a low pressure kind of way and just give them time and then I'll after I'm done uh after they feel like they're done then that clip lives there and when the session's over I will go back in you know and I'll break out the loops so I know that this is a sixteen bar loops so I go in I set the loop I duplicate the track and then I can just slide my lip, brace over and start creating a workflow for comping um when I do the vocal or instrumentation comping you know I listened through the clips and first and then I might take them I might take them over to arrangement view and duplicate the tracks and then just basically highlight and delete the parts that I want and need and make an arrangement like that and a lot of times if I am working like that if I find up taking I'm making multiple tracks of the same recording I will group those clips particularly if I'm using an insert effect um or anything like that so that I don't have to use it more than once so two group your clips he'll just do a command g and all of the audio takes can live in there so separate layers there and the cool thing about when you go in and conduct these layers there I'll just have a couple so we'll pretend this is our vocal track on track twenty one and pastors and and when I go and I'm like ok, I really like this the first you know for you know it's a bars here here and I'll just add it these accordingly so alternately you can report straight to arrangements so if me I'd like to start it with in session view and if sometimes I will record straight arrangement if I want to punch in so basically I would highlight so maybe I wanted to focus on this transition here so highlight that area set my end point in my outpoint but mike, you over here and I've got my my tracks armed and then I'll just start according here and once it hits the plane it starts recording it starts that once he gets the start point for the punch in it will punch that new clip from where we specified so my preferred workflow is too I do the taken one clip keep it in one clip and for averse are for each song part um in session view and then to go over to arrangement to do puncheon's and that kind of thing we talked about punching and that those were found at the top there by the late brace and looping session clips of arrangement another thing if you're if you are multi tracking you can there is an option to start recording at seem lunch so if I've got all of these armed let me just make sure that this is on road quick and my preferences I'll turn it on I can also record new clips here so now I have this and you can if you maybe this is this could be handy if you're doing multiple multiple song parts at the same time like ok, I'm moving on to this this next part and then you you khun store these accordingly and the cool thing is the those are also quanta ized so depending on your global colonization so as you noticed after I would click it would wait for the end of the one bar cycle depending on the grid to start that recording into switch to a new clip so it actually manages the timing of those clips really well and if you're if you wanted to go ahead and save yourself some editing time you can you can manually brake out your cops like that so if you're paying attention to what you are looping in the arrangement of you every time the vocalist or the instrumentalists starts over starts the phrase over you can start a new group of klute clips and break those out as you go um so that's a really fast way to do it as well I usually prefer to just work with one set of clips or one clip and just duplicated out no that's that's my preferred method we talked a little bit about target resolutions. So I think these days, if you can aim for thirty two bit ninety six k to record and mix down up.
Ableton Live is the most efficient platform for electronic music production for djs, producers and sound designers. DJ and producer, Andrew Luck will take you through some of the coolest, and most commonly overlooked, features in Ableton Live.
In Ableton Tips and Tricks, Andrew will walk you through sound design using Ableton Instruments, mastering both Sampler and Simpler to bring real-world audio samples into your production. You’ll also learn about some of the less intuitive features of Session View including, Impulse, Clip Launching and Slice to MIDI.
If you're a new Ableton user and are ready to start using the platform like a pro, Andrew Luck's tips and tricks will help you brush up on those next-level skills.