New Brian Funk Pack: ADM CHIP

OLD NEW IDENTITY
In 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 AWKWARD
I recall, when i appeared on his podcast for episode 13, joking briefly about the awkwardness of monikers. So from my perspective, this shift has been a long time coming and is totally sensible. HOWEVER…. at the time it happened we were smack dab in the middle of the process of releasing a series of ADM packs, epic agglomerations of his instruments, collected into organized, self-installing, themed ableton live packs, ideal for satiating completionists who desire to access to the catalog of devices in the easiest manner possible.

TYING UP LOOSE STRINGS
“ADM”, of course, stands for AfroDJMac. So what to do? It seemed a bit odd to continue to release products through Isotonik Studios as the now defunct vendor name when he was no longer going to go by that title. So, what we’ve done is kept the name for the packs as ADM— which is appropriate, as they were crafted by AfroDJMac, during the ADM era. But the developer name has been upgraded to Brian Funk, and we collectively decided to pitch the series as “the last hurrah of the AfroDJMac era”, aka “a tying up of loose strings to move on to fresh new things, shedding the baggage of the past.” Or something along those lines.

THE FUTURE IS BRIGHT
Brian is not ceasing in his audio production and Ableton Live pack releases; if anything, he’s ramped them up. But now, he is no longer held back by the stigmas and limitations of the expectations wrought by being bound to an artist name that evokes a particular sensibility. In case you haven’t noticed, he’s also been knocking out super dope music production podcast episodes at a prodigious rate.

PACKAGED PERFECTIONISM
The ADM series of packs is ridiculously exhaustive, including EVERY SINGLE instrument released by Brian spanning from the very start of his release history up until a given point in time (other than those included in collaborative packs he’s done with other developers, and some freebies). I know this because i’m the one who did the curation, assembling, organizing, verifying, and gain-staging the instruments for absolute accessibility and consistency. Even if you already own most of the packs that have been released by him directly, supplementing your arsenal with the Isotonik Studios ADM packs adds massive value by providing access to the instruments directly from the SOUNDS folder of your Ableton Live browser, no file management whatsoever to worry about on your part.

The complete series will include ten packs total. The latest has just dropped: ADM CHIP.

BLEEP BLEEP BLOOP
Do you love 8-bit, retro videogame style sounds? Do you want to craft your own retro video game music, or layer those sorts of sounds into modern production? Then this is THE pack for you.

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 is already in place.

With -AutoAdjustMacroMappingRange off, when mapping a parameter to a macro control, it will always result in a range of “min” to “max”, ragardless of the current position.

Say i want to map a parameter to a macro, and i want it to range specifically from 37 to 127.

With -AutoAdjustMacroMappingRange set to off, i would first have to map the parameter, click “map”, and then edit the minimum value to be 37.

However, with -AutoAdjustMacroMappingRange set to on instead, by mapping it, the minimum value will automatically be set to the current value (in this case 37), while the maximum will default to 127.

For cases where the maximum is meant to be 127, this reduces the mapping process to a single quick step, without even needing to open map mode. Other types of mappings might still require turning on map mode to adjust the values, but will still save a step of action if you map it while the current value matches one of the target values.

The unprocessed screengrab below demonstrates various mapping strategies, depending on what you want the minimums and maximums to be.

. . .

NOTE: i believe that a recent update of Live 10 enables AutoAdjustMacroMappingRange by default, whereas in previous versions it was off unless you enabled it manually. Either way, it’s handy to know that you can change it around when desired. Just remember that if you do change it, you’ll have to restart live for the change to take effect (i think).

“How the heck do i implement this?” you might ask. To answer that and for more swag info about Ableton Live’s mysterious Options.txt, Madeleine Bloom’s series on the topic is highly recommended.

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.
Continue reading

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 the knowledge that you’ll retain access to all future updates. Live 9 user? No problem. If you plan to upgrade to Live 10 later on, you can at any point download and upgrade your pack to the Live 10 version. Sweet, huh?

Continue reading

“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 situations? I say… nope.

Continue reading

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 time, avoids having to fiddle around with routing, and prevents accidentally sending bursts of audio through your system, with the option to listen to the process if curious. Continue reading