May 2012

Ableton – .MOV files in………….Ableton?

Yep that’s right, as if Ableton didn’t do enough already, you can use Live to edit you videos as well.

Editing videos in Ableton isn’t a new things but it’s probably one of those things you’ve heard of but not really explored.

To add a video to Ableton it needs to be a .mov file, you can then add the file only in to the arrangement view  and start slicing and cutting up the film as you like.  Whilst not all of Ableton’s features are available, such as Consolidate, Reverse or Crop, you can Cut, Duplicate and use Warp Markers to speed up or slow down different sections.

There’s no restriction on size of file, just your processing power, which gives you the opportunity to add entire films in to Ableton.  You can now sample all your favourite films or add your own soundtrack to a film.

If there’s a particular video on YouTube you like, here’s a smart trick in how to get the .mov file behind the film.  This only applies to Macs, if anyone knows how to do the same with a PC, please add instructions as a comment.

  • Open YouTube
  • Select a video
  • Press cmd alt a (in the first few seconds)
  • Look for the largest mb (sized) file that opens up in the separate window
  • Double click this file and save to your mac
  • Add the .mov file to the arrangement view

If you create any masterpieces, add a link in the comments section and we’ll check them out.

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Ableton: How to Programme Tech House Drum Track

In the following article we’re going to explain how to programme a Tech House drum track in Ableton, using the Roland 808 Classic drum machine.

First up, go to the instruments section of Ableton, select drum rack, then Kit, scroll down until you find 808 classic, then drag this in to a MIDI channel.

Your screen should look like the below screen shot.

All the Roland drum machines such as 707, 808 and the mighty 909 are great for using as the basis of your house track, not only do they give that rich familiar sound but the 808 Classic rack in Ableton, comes with a multitude of additional sounds such as Congas, Claves and Maracas for adding something extra to your tracks.

Double click on one of the clips in your MIDI track and the following MIDI editor will appear at the bottom of your screen.

The MIDI editor is set up as a four bar loop, which you can see in the bottom right hand corner as 1/16 which means 16 beats in total or 4 beats in 4 bars.

There are two main ways in which you can programme beats in to the MIDI editor, either with a MIDI instrument such as a keyboard or by drawing the notes in to the grid.  To do this, select which part of the kit you want to use first, found on the left side of the MIDI editor, i.e. kick, then double click on the grid where you want the beat to fall.  I’ve placed a kick on the first beat of each bar.

Other parts of the kit you’ll need are a closed hat, cymbal, clap, clave and snare.

You’ll need to set them out as per the screen shot below but try adding in Congas or Maracas to get an individual sound you’re happy with.

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