HELP! External Compressor + Ableton Live

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
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Kirawa
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Joined: Thu Sep 16, 2010 8:46 am

HELP! External Compressor + Ableton Live

Post by Kirawa » Sun Jul 05, 2015 7:24 am

Just got my ART PRO VLA2 compressor and I'm trying to integrate it with my Ableton session as a external compressor, sending audio signal to VLA PRO 2 and from VLA PRO 2 to my ableton as a wet / compressed signal. I've tried searching in the forum but didn't find a clear solution.

I have a focusrite scarlett 18i20 audio interface.
Here's my audio chain for now:

[FOCUSRITE] ---OUTPUT 7---> [VLA PRO 2] INPUT
[VLA PRO 2] ---OUTPUT ---> [FOCUSRITE] INPUT CHANNEL 6

After hooking it up I get signal going from the DAW to the VLA PRO 2 and I see compression but what I want to do now is to hear both DRY & WET signal in Ableton.
I've tried using the external audio effect plugin but that didn't really work out. Maybe I did something wrong or missed out along the process?
Any help will be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

swishniak
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Joined: Mon Jan 09, 2006 11:25 am
Location: Berlin

Re: HELP! External Compressor + Ableton Live

Post by swishniak » Mon Jul 06, 2015 11:26 am

make sure you select the rights ins and outs in the "external audio" device. also sometimes live shows different numbers for ins and outs from that what might be on your sound card. good luck.

Richie Witch
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Location: Space Coast, Central Florida

Re: HELP! External Compressor + Ableton Live

Post by Richie Witch » Mon Jul 06, 2015 12:20 pm

Set up the way you describe, you're only going to get a 100% wet signal from your ART compressor. It doesn't have any pre-compression Send connections of its own, so there is no way to get the pre-processed signal from the box. Such things do exist--the Alesis 3632, for example, has pre-compression Send connections for doing what I think you're after. You would just connect the Send to another input on the 18i20 and have separate wet and dry signals on two different inputs.

The other way to do it would be if the Scarlett 18i20 had aux buses, but alas, it doesn't. I haven't worked with the Focusrite MixControl software in a while, so you might check and see if you can do any special routing there.

So... the only option I can see is to take an External Audio device and put it on a Send track in Ableton. That would allow you to route wet and dry signals to different places, but I think you're limited to 50% wet on the Return in Ableton.
Win10/Intel i7 rig | Live 10 | DSI, Yamaha, Korg, and Novation synths, and 12U of Eurorack | various outboard gear | Dune 2, Circle2, Enzyme, Kontakt |

swishniak
Posts: 1132
Joined: Mon Jan 09, 2006 11:25 am
Location: Berlin

Re: HELP! External Compressor + Ableton Live

Post by swishniak » Mon Jul 06, 2015 12:38 pm

or just put it on the master channel, assuming you want to use it as a bus type compressor. . adjust wet / dry with the external effect device.

ikeaboy
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Re: HELP! External Compressor + Ableton Live

Post by ikeaboy » Wed Jul 08, 2015 9:07 am

If you use the external audio effect device the latency will be compensated, but even if this compensation is a tenth of a millisecond off and you use the dry/wet control on the device you will get phasing. I do this sort of thing with external distortion boxes and it comes down too what is the least obtrusive phasing I can live with as opposed to eliminating it altogether. When you hear phasing (try feeding it a snare sound) start by adding a millisecond of device delay compensation, does the phasings frequency go up? This is a sign you are going in the right direction, keep doing this listening to the phasing pitch/ frequency, when this starts to go down again you've gone too far, go back and adjust by 1/10ths of a millisecond.
When you have this as good as you can turn off all processing in your compressor and listen to the effect the dry/wet control on the external device has on a bassy sound like an 808 kick, is it stealing away bass at 50/50? Try inverting the phase or making delay comp adjustments to get it better.

Good luck and I'd advise not doing this when you feel inspired to make music as it can be a time consuming buzz kill, try it when you're in more of a 'music? Meh!' Mood

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