How Do YOU Record Hardware Synths?

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
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Shift Gorden
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How Do YOU Record Hardware Synths?

Post by Shift Gorden » Thu Apr 07, 2016 9:17 pm

I'm curious as to how you guys use hardware synths in your Ableton set-ups?

I'm "struggling" (way too dramatic of a word) with how I integrate my hardware into my set-up when recording (not playing live).

Do you save patches on your synths and essentially use Ableton to control cc messages? Do you mess around with sounds "live" and then render to audio? Do you record snippets? Do you use your synths onboard FX or use Ableton's?

I have a habit of recording all of my tweaks down to audio and then switching off the synth for the rest of the project.

What do you guys do?

sirbiss
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Re: How Do YOU Record Hardware Synths?

Post by sirbiss » Thu Apr 07, 2016 10:36 pm

I just create a patch i like on the synth and then record the audio from it into a clip or on to the timeline (arrangement view).
Sometimes i also record the midi data from when i play the synth aswell as the audio.

Mr-Bit
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Re: How Do YOU Record Hardware Synths?

Post by Mr-Bit » Fri Apr 08, 2016 12:16 am

I like to make a max for live UI/librarian that archives patches and converts midi to automation and back. Workflow = Load sound from Max device library send to hardware record tweeks freeze track. Now I can use my hardware on another track and also go back to frozen tracks by unfreezing and re sending the stored patch.

Having well implemented midi helps, had great luck with Waldorf Pulse 2 and Dave Smith Tetra.

Building from scratch is probably too advanced for someone that's "stuggling" I like it because I end up knowing my synth like the back of my hand and have a custom feature set, with any luck a max or VST editor already exists for your hardware.

I'm really happy with the way my Live/Max glove now fits but....I have been tailoring for a while ...keep at it Live is quite bendy!

Tarekith
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Re: How Do YOU Record Hardware Synths?

Post by Tarekith » Fri Apr 08, 2016 5:22 am

I always just record everything from hardware as audio, usually while I do any tweaks in realtime. I tend to not use MIDI first, it slows me down and encourages me to edit things that don't need editing. Especially in Live where it's still easy enough to tweak the audio to fix any one off mistakes.

Shift Gorden
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Re: How Do YOU Record Hardware Synths?

Post by Shift Gorden » Fri Apr 08, 2016 2:14 pm

Very cool guys - thanks for the feedback!

Mr-Bit - that M4L device sounds very intriguing indeed. I use Soundtower to help manage my Prophet 6 library, but it's pretty buggy. So, within any given project, you're using the M4L device to actually store your sounds - and you simply unfreeze if you want to resend that particular patch back to your synths?

That's great! I typically don't re-use patches I make from project to project just because it's so much fun to make new ones - if I understand it correctly, the M4L device might work really well for me.

What's it called, mate?

jlgrimes
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Re: How Do YOU Record Hardware Synths?

Post by jlgrimes » Fri Apr 08, 2016 4:21 pm

Shift Gorden wrote:I'm curious as to how you guys use hardware synths in your Ableton set-ups?

I'm "struggling" (way too dramatic of a word) with how I integrate my hardware into my set-up when recording (not playing live).

Do you save patches on your synths and essentially use Ableton to control cc messages? Do you mess around with sounds "live" and then render to audio? Do you record snippets? Do you use your synths onboard FX or use Ableton's?

I have a habit of recording all of my tweaks down to audio and then switching off the synth for the rest of the project.

What do you guys do?

I rarely use Hardware these days but I usually do two things:

Set up an external instrument for the hardware, That way you can easily record hardware midi performances to audio clips.

If using hardware with presets write down the presets you use in track name so you can recreate/reload track if need be.

doghouse
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Re: How Do YOU Record Hardware Synths?

Post by doghouse » Fri Apr 08, 2016 4:22 pm

Shift Gorden wrote:Do you save patches on your synths and essentially use Ableton to control cc messages?
Yes, none of my hardware have VST plugin editors.
Do you mess around with sounds "live" and then render to audio?
Sometimes (see below)
Do you record snippets?
Often
Do you use your synths onboard FX or use Ableton's?
Depends on the particular effect...some are only available in the synth, some only in Live
I have a habit of recording all of my tweaks down to audio and then switching off the synth for the rest of the project.
I do that at some point, but not immediately in case I need to adjust the patch further after laying down other tracks. Final mixdown is 100% audio tracks.

Logic8807
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Re: How Do YOU Record Hardware Synths?

Post by Logic8807 » Fri Apr 08, 2016 11:56 pm

I normally use midi via an external instrument rack to trigger and bring the audio back in on the same channel. I don't render to audio only because I add and remove throughout the project.
https://soundcloud.com/thegraysmith/asp ... itch-remix

Check me out...let me know what ya'll think.

Stromkraft
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Re: How Do YOU Record Hardware Synths?

Post by Stromkraft » Sat Apr 09, 2016 12:32 am

Shift Gorden wrote: Do you save patches on your synths and essentially use Ableton to control cc messages?
For those that have patches yes. I always record as well anyway because something may break until next time or it will sound different. I record CC for some parameters and do others live when finalizing that part as audio.
Shift Gorden wrote: Do you mess around with sounds "live" and then render to audio?
Yes.
Shift Gorden wrote:Do you record snippets?
Well, longer recordings turn out snippets if there is an idea there that needs to be short or repeat at that length to work out.
Shift Gorden wrote:Do you use your synths onboard FX or use Ableton's?
That depends on the synth and the effect. I prefer my plug-ins for anything but "character" effects that a few synths may have onboard.

Otherwise, I record both MIDI until next time and audio, so each synth typically gets at least two tracks. Most of the time this is directly into the inputs on the audio interface.
Make some music!

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