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How to Warp Songs (in 3 Simple Steps)

So what exactly is Warping?In Ableton Live, you can warp clips, so that they will always play in-tempo along with the grid. For most general composition and mixing tasks, you don’t want to do this, as it degrades audio quality, but for live performance it’s super amazing, since you can basically combine together any audio […]

Super Awesome Sounds

We’ve got a new pack for you, Super Awesome Sounds, featuring samples of the Casio SA-20 Keyboard. This was my first instrument as a kid and thus has a very nostalgic place in my heart, so i recently re-acquired one and went nuts sampling its 100 patches and making instrument and drum racks for ableton […]

Social Isolation Freebie: “Secret Weapon” Racks.

While we’re going through some crazy times right now, it has been heartwarming to experience how humans have upped their compassion game in response to shared crisis. I’ve seen more freebies and crazy deals going on this past week than any other time i remember, which seems because people want to help each other, share […]

Array Mbira Pack by Sonic Bloom

The mbira (aka kalimba aka thumb piano) has a peculiar sound all of its own. I think they tend to sound pretty cool, with a distinctive tone that is reminiscent of some other types of instruments but not quite exactly like anything else. But what’s this? The Array Mbira? It has four octaves, you say? […]

Organizing Your Ableton Browser Like a Boss PART 2: Custom Categories!

You might have already checked out the PerforModule post about organizing your User & Plugin Presets like a boss using Ableton’s built-in folder architecture.

Well, now we’re ratcheting it up a level to give you ultimate control of your own personalized device organization structure, with the ability to decide exactly what those categories will be…

Final Brian Funk “ADM” Packs

Brand New Brian Funk Packs! I’m happy to announce that the complete set of epic amalgamated Ableton Live device packs by Brian Funk are now available, bringing their total to ten. Includes: AMBIENTBASSCHIPDRUMSEFFECTS EXOTICKEYSORCHESTRALPLUNKSYNTHS “But what if i want ALL of them?” you ask. Not to worry—the Brian Funk ANTHOLOGY is available, allowing you to […]

Progressive Energy Transfer

For the past close to a year, i’ve been working on recording and mixing a collection of original songs by Shavano, an 79-yr old piano player / singer who lives in the same mountainous, forested region of Colorado as me. He dwells in a house built with his own hands, which is powered exclusively by […]

New Brian Funk Pack: ADM CHIP

OLD NEW IDENTITYIn case you haven’t heard the news, Brian Funk is no longer going by the name AfroDJMac. You can hear his thoughts on the evolution to this “new” identity at his podcast episode here. MONIKERS CAN BE AWKWARDI recall, when i appeared on his podcast for episode 13, joking briefly about the awkwardness […]

Nifty Ableton Option: Auto Adjust Macro Mapping Range

-AutoAdjustMacroMappingRange will make it so that when you map a parameter to a macro control, the current value becomes the minimum value of the newly-created mapping (rather than 0). I prefer enabling this option because it streamlines workflow by helping to map macros faster, saving the step of typing in the minimum value when it […]

Repurposing a Hardware Crossfader as a Stereo Controller

Just wanted to share a nifty routing trick which i have in use in my current analog gear setup. By plugging cables into this cheap DAK 2800-PC DJ Crossfader the “wrong” way, i can change the intended purpose of the device.

Visualizing Bus Compression As… a Bus.

You may have heard many varying descriptions of the difference between track compression and bus compression, usually including vaguely-defined, mysterious terms like “punch” and “glue” which don’t really help us understand anything. Well, i have a kinda dorky yet effective way to think of the difference between track and bus (aka buss) compression for you.

Dephaultz Pack Updated for Live 10.1

Heya. Just letting you know that the PerforModule Dephaultz pack for Ableton Live has been updated to incorporate Live 10.1’s new features. If you have previously bought the pack at Isotonik Studios, you will have already received an email about the update. If you haven’t purchased the pack yet, you can grab it secure in […]

“Perfect” Tuning—Is There Actually Such a Thing?

“Perfect” Tuning With the modern era of digital capabilities to re-tune recorded material, almost all music you hear nowadays has “perfect” tuning on all of the instruments and vocals. But what does this mean, exactly? Generally, this tuning is based on equal temperament. But is equal temperament the most “perfect” tuning for absolutely all musical […]

IR Maker Template Set for Ableton Live

This week we’ll be sharing with you an Ableton Live set used for impulse response creation.Requires: Ableton Live 9 or 10, MaxForLive, MaxForLiveEssentials pack. It allows you to quickly capture IRs from effects (software or hardware) by dropping them onto a track and pressing a couple of keyboard shortcuts. Using the template skips the setup […]

A Simple Rule for When to Use a Dynamic vs a Static EQ.

So you’re working on a song and you’ve found a frequency which you want to adjust. Let’s say you want to nudge down 4.4k a little bit to reduce a bit of harshness. Now you ask yourself: what type of EQ should be used? As time passes by, there becomes more and more dynamic EQ […]

Pingdemonium

So i found myself slightly annoyed that Ableton Live’s Ping Pong Delay effect always starts the first echo repeat on the left side. Sure, you could flip the stereo field after applying it to reverse the direction—but that also reverses the stereo field of the source audio. What if i want the source audio to […]

Using LR Effects as MS (+ free Encoding/Decoding racks)

For this tutorial we’re going to posit an example scenario: a way to achieve the common practice of narrowing the bass content of a stereo track by scooping out the S channel’s low end—but this time, using analog gear instead of plugins. But what if we don’t have any M/S gear? Not to worry.

An Alternative to True Peak Limiting: Not

True Peak Limiting is a method by which a limiter adjusts for how the digital waveform will be reconstructed by playback systems which can result in actual peak levels above 0dB even when the digital peak level is technically shown at below 0dB. Implied Curvature Basically the way intersample peaks occur is that the quantization […]

Ableton’s Auto Filter— Comparing Circuit Models

Filter Circuits – Drive We know that the new(ish) circuit models for Ableton Live’s Auto Filter effect add some tasty analog-modeled distortion, but what about their characters? Which of the circuit models adds the most aggressive distortion?

Skip Plugin Scan to Load Ableton Live Faster

This is just a quick, simple tip. If it takes forever to scan plugins every time you open Live (due to certain poorly-coded plugins taking longer than others and bottlenecking the process), you can set it up to skip plugin scan. Keep in mind that if you do this, you’ll want to perform a manual […]

All About Ableton’s Gate—A Pragmatic Guide

I found some old notes i had taken (for my own reference) about the parameters of Ableton’s Gate audio effect plugin and figured others could use the info as well, so i’ve polished ’em up, expanded on them a bunch, and dropped them here for you. I’ve found that getting to know exactly how each […]

New Pack: “Subterrestrial”

Hi! PerforModule has got a new Ableton Live pack available. What makes this one special? Well, it’s the first in a proposed series of “Binaural Textures” instrument packs, which include the unique feature of built-in binaural surround panning. Binaural Surround Panning? What the heck is that!? (listen to the video below on headphones to hear […]

Go-To Q Values

There are not many controls for digital plugins where i prefer stepped options as opposed to continuous values, but the Q factor of EQ slopes is one of those that generally i do. Not really sure why i prefer them that way; i suppose there are a few reasons. Regardless, i made myself (and you!) […]

Faster Freezing + Less CPU Usage: Avoid Processing Silence

This workflow enhancer is really simple. Just disable VST plugins during times in tracks when they are not being used. Activation Automation Automate the nifty device activator (aka “on/off switch“) of a device (or a rack of devices) to shut off during times of silence. Set the automation to switch on a little bit before […]

Set Up a Shuffle Playlist in Ableton Live Using “Follow”

Have you ever wanted to use Ableton live just to drop a bunch of tracks into session view and have them play randomly like a shuffle playlist in a media player? Natively, you could always use follow actions for each clip to trigger random other clips after a set number of bars. However, this only […]

Gain…Level…Trim… FaderWhat?

There’s some ambiguity between the terms gain, level, and trim. In general, they are used interchangeably. But sometimes they are different; for example, guitar amps often have both gain and level controls. I won’t attempt to provide the ultimate absolute definitive official definitions of those terms. I’ll just tell you how i tend to use […]

Handy DAW Tip: Cascading Plugin GUIs

So this one is super simple, but definitely helpful as a workflow enhancer. Applies to any VST-capable DAW. It’s always annoying when bringing one plugin GUI into focus obscures another GUI and then you have to shuffle things about. This tip applies when you have too many plugins open to fit them all onscreen without […]

Demystification: The Chain Fade Problem

So there’s this issue with fading between chains in a rack in Ableton Live which i haven’t heard much mention of. Perhaps you’ve noticed it? Say you have a rack with two chains, let’s call them “A” and “B“. Starting to Set Up our Chains Using the Zone Editors in the Chain Selector Editor of […]

PerforModule Recommends: Ideal Peak Levels

Kind of like every human being has a height value, every audio clip has a peak level value. So what can we do with that information, beyond knowing that going above 0dB usually isn’t advised? In our eternal quest for ultimate audio quality, the inclination can be inherent to record loudly—as close to 0dB—as possible, […]

Isotonik Sounds Launches with New Sale Packs

Isotonik Sounds has officially launched, a section at the Isotonik Studios webshop featuring instrument and sample packs for Ableton Live by various developers. New sale packs will periodically be made available. The first is ADM DRUMS by yes, you guessed it, the acclaimed wizard of Live: AfroDJMac.

Ableton Live 10: New Feature Highlights

So i’ve been delving into the Ableton Live 10 Beta for a little bit now, did a couple of large mixes and some experimenting with it, and have accumulated a fair impression of how it differs from Live 9. Ableton Live 10 ~ What’s to Like? I’ll run over some of the things i’ve noticed […]

PerforModule Mega Collections!

Restructuring The PerforModule Pack Collections at Isotonik Studios have been restructured. There are now 3 main collections which together comprise every one of my sale packs. These are by far your best deal ever at accumulating PerforModule goodies: DynaMixing Ultimate This consists of a single “mega” pack which contains a consolidated collection of ALL the […]

A Limiter Tournament

So i set up a Limiter Tournament (using a variation on single elimination style) to decisively rank my Clipper/Limiter/Maximizer plugins against each other. Unlike with compression, which i often like to use for adding character, injecting density, and enhancing groove, my primary purpose for limiters tends to be to increase headroom by curtailing short transient […]

Demystification: What’s Up With EQ Three?

What is this mysterious “colouration” that ableton’s EQ Three has with “flat” mode disabled (also the default mode for versions 8 and older) which we hear so much about?

Testful Mastering / PMX FX Plus

Testful Mastering “Testful Mastering” is a pack containing an epic effect rack which contains the entire mastering workflow for obtaining a reasonably loud and balanced master or pre-master, mimicking my real-life “Tasty Mastering” workflow using Ableton-native devices.

Compression Tests

What does compression sound like? What are compressors actually doing to our audio?

“Bussification”

The newest sale pack is here: “Bussification”. It consists of channel strip racks designed for placement on groups of tracks, auxiliary tracks, and on the master buss during mixing. Each macro control for each is specifically restrained in minimum and maximum ranges to exemplify the relevant characteristics of different types of instruments. (massive props to Joshua Casper […]

New Free Microcassette Tape Instruments

SO my friend mobdividual lent me a couple of microcassette players in order to import an old microcassette tape i found. It turns out the cassette was the very same used to record samples on this classic record. Neato! BUT THEN i decided to also record the sound made when the tape player was playing a blank […]

New Packs

Guitaritis A deluxe suite including combo amp racks making the utmost of Live’s built-in Amp and Cabinet devices, “Stomper” effects designed like guitar pedals and guitar Chord presets. Stuff it comes with… Combamps a whole bunch (30) of combo amps which are crafted to optimize Ableton Live’s built-in Amp & Cabinet devices to their utmost. […]

Introducing “Groovification”

One of the supremely GROOVY things about Ableton Live is the ability to implement grooves.  What does that mean? It means you can induce “Swing” by imposing defined shifts to individual notes’ timing and/or velocity.

NEW Sale Packs: “One Knob Wonders”, “Advanced Splytterz”

Two new premium packs for Ableton Live have been released, after extensive testing periods. These are some of the most robust and practical stuff we’ve created yet! All Premium PerforModule packs are self-installing, meaning that you simply drag them into Live and all the devices will now be in your library, categorized. “One Knob Wonders” Includes 64 […]

“Drum MIDI FX” Free Pack

A new free Live pack is available at Subdivizion. It includes a handful of midi racks which are specifically designed for use before drum racks in Ableton Live. Especially fun stuff for live performance if you like to play drum racks with a midi pad controller. Also very useful for hastening studio production workflow. Click the […]

Vinyl Snackler

  NEW free pack available via AfroDJMac: Vinyl Snackler “Instrument with 128 Unique Analog Vinyl Noise Loop Samples.” This is a sampler instrument which is designed to play a loop of background vinyl noise which you can select from 128 unique samples, each with their own character. Some of the samples are primarily background hiss, but some also have pops, clicks, and other artifacts […]

Controlling MIDI in Ableton Live with a Video Game Controller

DO WHAT NOW? Get your video game controller to do stuff in Live. DO WHY? Because doing so is awesome. Duh! DO HOW? This is where it gets tricky. But not that tricky. MIDI or KEY mapping? Key mapping alone is groovy, but you are limited to toggling between two values. That’s no fun for a […]

Free “Emphasizers” Racks

Click to Get Emphasized. Control any audio effect with more precision than ever before. (inspired by this excellent tutorial video by Dan Worrall) Have with the funs!

“The Blue Hand” for Instant Mapping in Ableton Live

So you might be like “what the heck is that blue hand i keep seeing in Ableton Live?”. The blue hand will magically take hold of the controls of the selected device… IF you have instant mapping enabled for a MIDI controller.

Free LANDR “Tone Sculptors” Ableton Live pack + other nifty stuff

I recently helped tweak and finalize a set of free audio effect racks in collaboration with online mastering service LANDR. These are three effect racks suited for quick and easy “tone sculpting” of parts which are centered on low, mid, or high frequency ranges. Check out the story about it and find download links here: www.ableton.com/en/blog/free-landr-tone-sculptors/ If […]

Free Ableton Live Pack: Midi Dynamics

Presenting “Midi Dynamics“, the latest PerforModule free pack. It includes 4 simple yet useful devices specifically for controlling midi dynamics, and one silly device with various fun-ctions. Click image to grab! Included Devices: Midi Compressor Smooth out too-loud midi instrumentation. Use this like you would an audio compressor, to attenuate midi notes which exceed a certain […]

“8-Bit Reverb” free effect rack

Sometimes you want a pristine reverb with the most delicate and precious tail imaginable. Other times, you want a layer of digital dirt to add a touch of gritty color. For those other times… here’s another new free audio effect rack for Ableton Live 9. It’s called “8-Bit Reverb” and is a lo-fi reverb effect […]

“Planetary Convolution” – a new set of impulse-based reverbs for use with any DAW.

Now unveiling “Planetary Convolution” – a pack of Reverb Impulse Responses, each based on a planet (including dwarf planets!) in our Solar System. They were created using different custom settings of Ableton’s built-in Reverb Algorithm, re-sculpted into Impulse Responses, and then further enhanced. Each is presented as a “Convolution Reverb Pro” preset for Ableton Live 9 […]

new free Multiband Reverb effect rack for Ableton Live 9

“PerforModule: MultiBand Reverb” A reverb effect rack sending different calibrated reverb algorithms to the lows, mids, and highs. The lengths, widths, and shapes of each reverb chain are scaled compared to each other leading to very complex, smooth and lush sound which can be used from very short ambience “small box” reverbs to extremely long-tailed hall […]

New free GT-8 Impulse Responses by PerforModule at Bedroom Producers Blog

I got inspired one day and sampled a convolution for each effect i could procure out of my Boss GT-8 Guitar Multi-FX pedal. I sent them off to Bedroom Producers Blog, where they are now available for FREE download. I also made a default “Convolution Reverb Pro” preset Ableton device for each IR and made them into […]

Free “Chopper” Effect Rack

Here’s a free effect rack.  It allows you to chop up your audio, with a rate knob that fades between 1, 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, 1/16, and 1/32 notes, and avoids triplets. Or, the rhythm can be switched to “Triplets” mode instead. There is built-in extra gating for adjustable dynamics, an “LFO Type” knob to select between 4 […]

Handy Ableton Tip – Change a Macro Name After It’s Been Mapped.

Problem: You may have noticed that after you map a macro knob to another macro, you can then no longer rename it either by clicking on it and pressing [CMD-R (mac) / CTRL-R (windows)] or by right-clicking it and selecting “rename” — the context menu option disappears for that macro =( Solution? As long as […]

Updated set of free special racks to economize cpu: “The Enablerz”

“The Enablerz” What they are:  An Ableton Live rack (one each for effects in audio tracks, effects in return tracks, midi effects, and midi instruments)  used to temporarily disable devices without deleting them, thereby freeing up some ever-precious CPU. Features:  Frees up CPU of contained racks. Click-free realtime operation (feel free to enable/disable while audio […]

Free Device- the Subaqueous Kick Selector

Need kicks? Here we have for you this free Kick Selector courtesy of http://www.subaqueousmusic.com/  ~ the (aqpm) Kick Selector, chock-full of sweet kick samples. Subaqueous sent me the rack and i tweaked it to be able to harmonically match whatever key your song is in. It’s always nice having more kick drums to choose from, as […]

Handy Ableton Tip – Macro Default Positions

You already know that you can hit the “delete” key on any parameter in a device to return it to its default position (or, in Live 10, double-click it). But did you know that if you save a preset as a rack and then tweak a macro (after re-opening the version you saved), you can […]

New free audio effect rack: “Eroduxion”

Eroduxion PerforModule – Eroduxion: Combines the total capabilities of the Redux and Erosion effects in one device (set in parallel), with the ability to fade between them. Next time you feel like using some Erosion and/or Redux on a track, try this effect rack instead and save yourself a sec. Stereo Panning Trick: ~Use the […]

Magical Gate: an input-receptive Gate device for Ableton 9 + Max For Live

Magical Gate — A gate with soul. “Magical Gate” is a gate effect with a magical touch — it moves according to the input signal. It doesn’t cut off sounds as linearly as a normal gate. It’s organic. Kinda like it’s alive or something. It is more reactive and sensitive to the host material. It’s […]

PerforModule – uno Glitchification series: 9 free Ableton Live 9 single-knob glitch effects

 New PerforModule one-knobbies! GLi+tChH c-C-r>.’|)razZy_y ! These are relatively simple rhythmically-based one-knob effects, designed primarily for live performance, each based on a built-in ableton effect or two. Individually, they are very simple and easy to understand. They are optimized to be grouped into your own more complex multi-effects to map to midi controllers, with each […]

How to Organize User & Plugin Presets Like a Boss in Ableton 9 Using the Hidden Architecture

Problem: Hot-swapping… have to navigate to all these different folders. Wah! So annoying. End up neglecting certain folders of presets due to their unfortunate locations. Presets get sad and lonely, and begin to wither. Solution:Ableton 9 has a built-in secret “Folder Architecture”. Fiddling around with how things appear in the browser i discovered that if […]

Vocoverb: Reverb using Live 9’s “Vocoder” Effect.

Vocoverb — Cavernous Digital Sand. Did you know you could make a reverb-type effect with ableton’s “vocoder” effect? Vocoverb is a reverb effect that is made using 2 instances of ableton’s vocoder effect, providing a very unique reverb to add to your production palette. Download the FREE Vocoverb Effect Rack for Ableton 9 -> CLICK HERE

Guitar Stringonator – free Effect Rack for Ableton 9

Guitar Stringonator This effect rack will simulate the extra resonations of the unplayed guitar strings when strumming a guitar. It adds one extra tone per string, according to standard EADGBE tuning, with the option to layer in some higher octaves to simulate a 12-string guitar, and the ability to shift the root tone up or […]

PerforModule – uno Modutation series: free Ableton Live 9 single-knob modulation effects

Alien Spa Treatment. Epidermal Rubberization. Metallic Wormhole. Interdimensional Dissolution. Degraded Laser Robot Wobble Voice. Earth and Space Elementals. Ghastly Vocoding. Here is the third batch of fun treats, the uno Modutation series: eight individual free Ableton Live 9 single-knob modulation effects, each made with a different base audio effect, and calibrated to have interesting usefulness […]

Dalek Voice – free Dalek Vocal Effect Rack for Ableton 8+

Dalek Voice has just 3 macro knobs: EXTERMINATE! – The main parameter; adds that classic Dalek rasp, from 0-100%wet. Gate – Adds a bit of gating to make noisy source material less mushy. Single or Flanked – Determines whether facing a single Dalek or if surrounded. Dalek Voice sounds best on mid-to-high-pitched single-voiced vocal material […]

PerforModule – uno Sweemps series: free Ableton Live 9 single-knob sweep filters

Swhweeeeeeeeeeep! Beeeeeeiiiauuuueeeeeeeeuuuuuuuoooooowwwwwwwwwwwmmmmmmmmmffffff. Here is the second batch of goodies, the uno Sweemps series: eight individual free Ableton Live 9 single-knob hi/lo filter sweep effects, each made with a different base audio effect. There are also versions which add delay, for extra pizzazz. I love using these things for live performance to do different types of […]

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