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 Post subject: usb footswitch for looping with ableton looper
PostPosted: Tue Oct 16, 2018 4:59 am 

Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2018 12:20 am
Posts: 1
Hi folks,
I've been trying to find a simple 5 or 6 button usb midi footswitch that will control the basic functions of the ableton looper: record, overdub, play, stop and clear
After purchasing the Tech 21 mongoose footswitch I realized it was only midi out, with no usb capability, so I decided to return it. While on the phone with the sales rep about returning the pedal I got talked into getting a Nektar Pacer footswitch, which has usb capability and was supposedly fully integrated for use with ableton. It arrived in the mail today and I immediately realized that it is not integrated with ableton, although it can be programmed as midi note controller. That would be fine, except that after I record a loop with my bass guitar and I start playing the keyboard, if I play a note on the keyboard that corresponds with one of the midi notes I've associated with the looper it reads it as a midi message to the looper. Besides the fact that this footswitch is far more complicated than what I need, it also seems to be incapable of doing the basic task I require, namely allowing me to record and loop a bassline while I play the keyboard over it. The general factory mapping that they suggest for most DAWs is totally useless, and on top of it all when I stop play and restart it the global BPM is reset to 999 :cry:
At this point I'm thinking I need to return this f**ing thing as well, unless there's something I'm missing here. Midi mapping is not my strong suit, simple stuff is no problem but with multiple controllers things get complicated pretty fast. I have a push 1 I use for triggering clips in session mode and an akai mpk249 I use as a keyboard but I'd really like to be able to integrate a live-looped bass guitar with a foot switch so I can loop a bassline and jam over it. It seems like such a simple request but I can't seem to find the right piece of gear for the task.
Any ideas are welcome,
Thanks


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 Post subject: Re: usb footswitch for looping with ableton looper
PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2018 9:05 pm 

Joined: Sat Mar 08, 2008 5:12 pm
Posts: 122
Location: Wuppertal (Germany)
dugdigit wrote:
It arrived in the mail today and I immediately realized that it is not integrated with ableton
They didn't make their own Ableton integration with a Python script (that way they would have a much deeper Ableton integration) but just programmed it in a way you can use it in Mackie mode. And you could basically do that with any controller you can reprogram to different MIDI messages.
You can use it in Mackie mode like this http://support.nektartech.com/PRODUCTS- ... etup-Pacer
Any manual MIDI mappings overwrite the ones of a Control Surface (such as the Pacer in Mackie mode) and the Pacer also has some unused buttons in Mackie mode. So you could still add some mappings.
In Mackie mode, there are already buttons to select the track. When you enter the MIDI mapping mode in Ableton there are new buttons in every channel that is not a return channel (also the master) to trigger the clip slot in the selected scene (also if there isn't any clip, then it means stop or record clip) or start the selected scene. In the master, there also appear mappable buttons to select the scene. This way at least you can achieve what you want in a clip workflow instead of the Looper workflow. For guitar players, it's not as good as the Looper but it's better than nothing.

For a better integration using the Looper that doesn't rely on manual MIDI mapping, you don't need the right hardware, you need the right script for any hardware. The Behringer FCB 1010 is a little bit more common. Perhaps someone already wrote a script for that controller. If such a script exists you could reprogram your Pacer to use the same MIDI messages. The script doesn't really care if the device is actually is a FCB 1010 just like the script for Mackie mode doesn't care if it's an actual Mackie Control.
I don't know if such a script exists but at least I can tell you it's technically possible since I write such scripts my own.

dugdigit wrote:
if I play a note on the keyboard that corresponds with one of the midi notes I've associated with the looper it reads it as a midi message to the looper.
Just set the keyboard to a different MIDI channel. But don't change the channel in the Pacer. If you do that the Mackie Mode won't work anymore.
If you use the Ableton integration with your keyboard you also shouldn't change the channel of the buttons, knobs, and faders but only the channel of the keys and pads.


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 Post subject: Re: usb footswitch for looping with ableton looper
PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2018 12:35 pm 

Joined: Fri Mar 26, 2004 10:25 pm
Posts: 4767
Location: France
If you're still looking for a solution, I just launched a Kickstarter campaign for a MIDI controller that connects to Live's Looper.
You can check it here.

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