Guitar looping with Ableton 9 Suite and APC40?

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alexjholland
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Guitar looping with Ableton 9 Suite and APC40?

Post by alexjholland » Thu May 19, 2016 9:31 am

Hey, I'm a guitarist who works with beats and often layers of guitars, which Ableton is great for.

I've started uploading Instagram clips, where live performance is important for the vibe.

Hitting 'play' for a backing track isn't going to make an engaging experience to watch.

I'll likely pickup a TC Electronic Ditto X4 and sync it via MIDI at some point, but in the meantime, can I use Ableton? I have an APC40 too, which might help.

The APC40 may not have foot controls, but a solution could be if be pressing a loop, I get a count-in (enough time to get my fingers back to the strings) and then it automatically records 2, 4 or 8 bars and immediately starts playing it back to me?

Is it possible to set a clip to finish at a specific bar-length and play back? Can I set a count-in?

Any other tips would be appreciated.. Surely there's a way to do this?!

Cheers

Angstrom
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Re: Guitar looping with Ableton 9 Suite and APC40?

Post by Angstrom » Thu May 19, 2016 9:47 am

It seems more like you'd be better using the Looper device?
Take a look at that, they modelled it on a hardware looper.

It has flaws, but it might suit you for now.

alexjholland
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Re: Guitar looping with Ableton 9 Suite and APC40?

Post by alexjholland » Thu May 19, 2016 9:56 am

Angstrom wrote:It seems more like you'd be better using the Looper device?
Take a look at that, they modelled it on a hardware looper.

It has flaws, but it might suit you for now.
Oh sweet, how did I not know about this?

I guess when I'm 'producing', recording and trimming clips to size is fine, so I hadn't looked before.

So with Live Suite 9, this is already in Ableton? or does it require Max?

Cheers

Angstrom
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Re: Guitar looping with Ableton 9 Suite and APC40?

Post by Angstrom » Thu May 19, 2016 10:13 am

It's a Suite device.
It has one or two flaws which might make you scratch your head and shout "WHHYYYY!!!??" but it's also got one or two handy features . You can put other effects into the feedback path for instance

This tutorial focuses on using it for non-standard purposes (making synthetic drones), but I do also use it with guitar to pretend I'm both Fripp and Eno, quite regularly.
http://angstromnoises.com/ableton-tutor ... eedback-2/

It's one of those devices which is worth scrutinising the manual on. It can be a bit strange. The "song control" and "tempo control" sections often trip people up. Also the Input-> Output section will control whether you actually hear yourself, yourself and the loop, or just the loop.

alexjholland
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Re: Guitar looping with Ableton 9 Suite and APC40?

Post by alexjholland » Thu May 19, 2016 10:43 am

Angstrom wrote:It's a Suite device.
It has one or two flaws which might make you scratch your head and shout "WHHYYYY!!!??" but it's also got one or two handy features . You can put other effects into the feedback path for instance

This tutorial focuses on using it for non-standard purposes (making synthetic drones), but I do also use it with guitar to pretend I'm both Fripp and Eno, quite regularly.
http://angstromnoises.com/ableton-tutor ... eedback-2/

It's one of those devices which is worth scrutinising the manual on. It can be a bit strange. The "song control" and "tempo control" sections often trip people up. Also the Input-> Output section will control whether you actually hear yourself, yourself and the loop, or just the loop.
Great. And does the APC40 work with it? For example, the APC40's grid?

Angstrom
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Re: Guitar looping with Ableton 9 Suite and APC40?

Post by Angstrom » Thu May 19, 2016 11:32 am

That's where things start to break down.
There is a very weird integration with the grid. Like ... not an integration at all.

They built this device as a stand-alone effect unit rather than integrating into the session grid, and the only real way of moving loops out of the looper and into the session is dragging them with a mouse.

Even more painful than that ... half of the controls on the looper don't record their automation into the arrangement or session. So if you play guitar and use the looper to create a 4 bar phrase, then double that, play a bit more over the top, then double it again. When you play back the arrangement it will bear no relation to what you did. It's an exceptionally infuriating device.

There are alternative routes you could go down, for instance Isotonik have a device in their modular series called Looper which is more of an automation system for the session grid clips and very much suited for the APC 40, and though Isotonik's devices mainly service the techno/DJ market the principles are the same. If you want to set a loop length, and have some control over it from the APC. They sell a lot of these sort of devices, and this one is from a pack which does a lot of clip manipulation like that.

As I recall their device allows the APC40 to set clip loop lengths on Session Clips, and to lengthen and shorten them. Information on their site is a bit scant.
TBH I've not tried it so you might want to have a chat with them about whether it will suit your purposes.

(the pack ) http://isotonikstudios.com/isotonik/modular-series/
(the device) http://isotonikstudios.com/isotonik/mod ... es/looper/

mmorgan
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Re: Guitar looping with Ableton 9 Suite and APC40?

Post by mmorgan » Thu May 19, 2016 1:31 pm

This guy shows some interesting looping techniques using clips. The video is about 18 minutes long but worth the listen I think.

Here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AEiOL6q ... HZFQPHHEDu
Michael Morgan | pearl hour project
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Matt_Quinn
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Re: Guitar looping with Ableton 9 Suite and APC40?

Post by Matt_Quinn » Thu May 19, 2016 7:26 pm

I used to love Looper dearly, but the PDC fix caused a weird issue for me that I'm still unable to get comfortable with.

viewtopic.php?f=1&t=216771

Matt_Quinn wrote:This has never been an issue for me in the past, but recently, Looper falls out of sync with my set, but only after I turn *off* the track's record button. Set up is guitar>Tascam US1641. Arm the guitar track for recording, play something into Looper, it works as expected, timing is fine. But then if I put my guitar down and disarm the track while the loop is running, it falls out of sync by somewhere between 1/8-1/16 note. Restarting the loop does not fix the timing issue *unless* the track is again armed to record, then it works fine. Dragging the clip from Looper>audio track, the timing remains screwed up. Sucks, I use Looper all the time and this is cramping my style. Any ideas?

Edit to add: came home and confirmed the behavior described above. Also tried dragging a 4 bar loop from Looper>Audio track again. I was just playing quarter notes for 4 bars, and while I'm not the world's greatest guitar player, that's a task I can handle. But this is what the resulting audio clip looks like-

Image
Matt_Quinn wrote:Emailed support and they advised me to turn off delay compensation, which fixed the issue. It did then throw my Virus out of sync with the set though, so kind of a tough spot, seems like it's either/or, but not both. It does seem like you can switch back & forth while the set is playing, so it's a usable compromise.
So I guess just be aware that Looper and PDC do not always play nice AFAIK. If you're not using any plug ins in a set, might not be an issue.
the_planet wrote:Trap music is not supported in the current version.

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