Looped audio to clip slot (without dragging/touching the computer)?


I am wondering if anyone has found a way to hands-free get your looped audio to a clip slot. I am playing guitar and bass w/ a heavy reliance on live looping.

My hands are in use 90% of the time playing my instruments & my laptop is not on the desk, so it's not easily accessible. I've managed to do almost everything I need with my midi footswitches, but not this.

For example:

My session has separate scenes for Verse, Chorus, etc.

1) I arm a track with Looper and record my "Verse". 

2) Next I want to record the loops for my "Chorus".

3) Then I want to go back to the "Verse"  that I've already recorded with Looper; and then go back to the "Chorus", and so on.

The problem is this: If I use 2 separate tracks for Verse and Chorus, stopping them when they come in/out sounds abrupt, since it cuts the audio on that track. Furthermore, I won't be sure if the loops will start in the right place when I unmute them.

I know I can bypass Looper and just record directly into clip slots, but it's not certain the loop will be the right length; and moreso, I can't stack / build up the loops; it can only be one "part" at a time.

If there was a way to get the Looped audio to a clip slot, it would be easy to swap between Verse & Chorus etc easily.

I'm open to any methods to get the same result - namely, easily swapping back/forth between loops you've recorded - if anyone has a good idea for this. Thanks in advance to anyone who cares to comment.


danadiamond 4 years ago | 0 comments

3 answers

  • improviselive
    1 answer
    5 votes received
    5 votes

    Thanks for tempting me to stretch my brain cells.

    Short Answer:  Record Looper material into a separate audio track with Monitoring Off.  If one track being Record Enabled shuts off another, check preferences to make sure you don't have Exclusive Arm selected.

    Have you investigated track routing in Live?  In a second audio track, under AUDIO FROM select the INPUT TYPE (first dropdown) to be the track with the Looper, you will then get an option for the INPUT CHANNEL (second dropdown) to be INSERT-LOOPER.  Set the track's MONITORING to OFF, so no latency is recorded into this track- the track which your overdubbings from Looper will be recorded into Clips.  I set my Looper track to exist on A SIDE of the Crossfader and I set the second track to exist on the B SIDE of the Crossfader.  Map the Crossfader to your expression pedal on Channel (#X).  Both tracks should be RECORD Enabled of course.    

    I hope your interface has hardware monitoring.  Hardware monitoring allows you to listen to your live instrument signal without latency.  This was a huge revelation for me.  I love to loop live with Ableton, but I noticed that no matter how I compensated my human sound, I would eventually drift off-time with the passing of just 4-6 layers.  But Ah Ha...I was setting my Looper track MONITORING to AUTO in an attempt to use the Looper like a hardware looper, but I RTFM and the manual trumped; AUTO records the latency and OFF doesn't.  So I figured the only way to incorporate the Looper into my live set would be to record into clips with the track MONITORING set to OFF.

    You will notice with the track MONITORING set to OFF the Looper will not record a live signal.  I set my Looper INPUT<-->OUTPUT to REC/OVR/STOP, so that I don't get a doubling of the Pre-Looper Clip/Sound that may still being playing after I record it into Looper.  Think of the clip slots in the Looper track as places to audition your layers. Clip settings like transpose and volume could be mapped to expression pedal CC on MIDI Channel (#Y).  Clips are recorded and played back, then Looper is engaged to record on the one.  If you want to capture this Looper pass as a part, then in the second track, have some clip slots mapped to be activated by other controller buttons or even and old QWERTY keyboard, KEY MAPPING letters and numbers.      

    For Further Example:

    Start with the Crossfader on Side A.  Record your first clip.  Then make engage your Looper to record beginning on the Clip's 1ne.  Record Clips to add layers and/or record Looper parts into second track.  When you want to transition between the track of Pre-Looper Clips and the track of Clips of Looper Results, just push that pedal over to SIDE B.  If Global Quantization (Clip Launch Quantization) and Loop Quantization are the same, or multiples you enjoy, you should have no problem cueing up the separate parts on the 1ne once different Looper passes have been captured.  And what if you you do some Looper experimentation and totally lose that first pass?  You have each pass recorded into the Looper already in a Clip and could rebuild parts differently. Layer vs Layers with expression pedal Crossfader work...  You have those possibilities in the great Ableton sample bank known as the Session View Clips, and you will have just made all of your Clips, Live.

    I hope this helps, beyond me talking to myself.

    4 years ago | 0 comments
  • danadiamond
    1 answer
    1 vote received
    1 vote

    I read your post some time ago and I thought I replied, but I don't see it. Many thanks for taking the time to write this thorough reply!
    I finally had time after alot of touring and recording to come back to this. I've tried it as you mentioned, but I hit the wall. Additionally, I don't have a crossfader. I'm using a Korg Nanokontrol and a Launchpad, running Ableton V08.4. But ultimately, I don't think that is the problem.

    In any case, if you see this, let me know and I will write again with specifics of where I'm stuck. Cheers!

    4 years ago | 0 comments
  • moshjartin
    2 answers
    2 votes received
    1 vote


    I've been working on this problem for a REALLY long time and I think I've come up with an interesting alternate solution to the problem using the program midiStroke.

    midiStroke can be found here:


    (thanks to Charlie Roberts for his awesome program)

    midiStroke turns midi notes into keystrokes and includes really useful keys such as the directional arrows and pretty much any key combination you can think of.

    On mac you can set up a virtual midi port through audio midi setup in the IAC Driver to connect ableton to midiStroke. In ableton create a midi track that sends midi to the IAC Driver and in midiStroke set it up so the midi notes (I start at the lowest possible i.e 0, 1, 2, 3 in Channel 16 so it doesn't interfere with my midi controllers) to trigger various keystrokes (I start mine a, b, c, d...) and key map those in ableton to the pedal and stop button in the looper and the launch buttons for the audio tracks you want to record the looper into.

    Then create a midi clip triggering the midi-to-keys to press the pedal and launch button to start recording into a clip and another that stops the looper and retriggers the clip for playback (i also clear the looper with this button allowing for more loops to be created in other audio tracks)

    So to loop you have a footpedal or something to the looper pedal to start recording and start overdubbing and midi map the clips you created to put the looper into playback and record an audio clip and stop the clip while triggering the loop simultaneously.


    Good luck!



    2 years ago | 1 comment

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