Ableton Live
Ableton Live Tutorial

Creative Racks & Sampling in Live

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31 Videos | Length: 2hr 31min 39sec
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  • Introduction 1:10


    Let’s discuss sampling and how you can use it to create your own unique sound.

  • Recording Audio 7:58

    Recording Audio

    How to record audio into Ableton Live.

  • Using MIDI to Sample Better 4:22

    Using MIDI to Sample Better

    The sampling process can often be streamlined using MIDI to send notes to our hardware.

  • Getting Creative 3:26

    Getting Creative

    Let’s explore outside of the box thinking when it comes to sampling.

  • Resampling 3:24


    Ableton’s resampling function is a useful tool that allows us to capture all audio currently playing.

  • Processing Samples 7:58

    Processing Samples

    Now that we have some samples recorded let’s clean them up and add effects.

  • When to Use Simpler 4:58

    When to Use Simpler

    Simpler is a powerful sampling instrument that can make use of Live’s Warping Engine.

  • Using Simpler 9:56

    Using Simpler

    Let’s dive into the ins and outs of using Simpler.

  • Tuning Samples in Simpler 3:33

    Tuning Samples in Simpler

    When creating melodic instruments, it is important to make sure your samples are properly tuned.

  • When to Use Sampler 2:25

    When to Use Sampler

    Sampler is Live’s deepest sampling instrument with the ability to use multiple samples.

  • Working with Multiple Samples 7:31

    Working with Multiple Samples

    In this video I demonstrate how to incorporate more than one sample in our Sampler instrument.

  • Tuning Samples in Sampler 2:46

    Tuning Samples in Sampler

    How to properly tune our samples in Live’s flagship sampler.

  • Key Zones 3:25

    Key Zones

    Sampler allows different samples to be played on different ranges of keys on your keyboard.

  • Velocity Zones 6:19

    Velocity Zones

    Different samples can be triggered depending on the velocity of incoming notes.

  • Sample Chain Selector 5:45

    Sample Chain Selector

    One of the strengths of Sampler is that we can set up different chains of samples that each playback different samples.

  • Modulation in Sampler 7:14

    Modulation in Sampler

    Sampler has powerful modulation capabilities that can be used to drastically alter the sound of our instrument.

  • When to Use Drum Racks 2:59

    When to Use Drum Racks

    Drum Racks can be a powerful sampling tool that excels in certain situations.

  • Dropping Samples Presets 1:59

    Dropping Samples Presets

    We can adjust the way Drum Racks deal with samples when they are dropped onto a Drum Rack Cell.

  • Getting Creative with Drum Racks 3:47

    Getting Creative with Drum Racks

    Learn to use Drum Racks for sounds that are not just drums.

  • Layering Samples 1:49

    Layering Samples

    More than one sample and up to 128 samples can be dropped on each Cell of a Drum Rack.

  • Routing in Drum Racks 5:18

    Routing in Drum Racks

    One of the strengths of Drum Racks are its deep and flexible routing system.

  • Adding Audio & MIDI Effects 3:29

    Adding Audio & MIDI Effects

    Let’s examine our options for creating Audio and MIDI FX.

  • Audio Effect Racks 4:58

    Audio Effect Racks

    We explore the capabilities of Audio Effect Racks.

  • MIDI Effect Racks 6:32

    MIDI Effect Racks

    In this video we cover our options with MIDI Effect Racks.

  • Instrument Racks 3:39

    Instrument Racks

    The capabilities of Instrument Racks are described.

  • Layering Synths with Chains 5:46

    Layering Synths with Chains

    Instrument Racks allow us to stack up to 128 different instruments together.

  • Creating a Drum Selector 5:16

    Creating a Drum Selector

    Let’s explore how we can create a Macro Knob to cycle through up to 128 drum samples on a single Drum Rack Cell.

  • Creating a Synth Selector 2:52

    Creating a Synth Selector

    This video demonstrates how we can use a Macro Knob to choose between up to 128 different instruments.

  • Experimenting with Sampler 8:29

    Experimenting with Sampler

    Sampler can be used in some very experimental ways to create sounds entirely different from our original samples.

  • Simpler’s Slicing Mode 6:49

    Simpler’s Slicing Mode

    This video explores exciting ways we can use Simpler’s Slicing Mode to create evolving sounds and textures.

  • Saving & Organizing Presets 5:47

    Saving & Organizing Presets

    ow that we have created our own instruments, let’s cover the ways to organize them.

Product Overview

In this video tutorial series, Ableton Live sage Brian Funk, akaAfroDJMac, shares his secrets for building truly unique sampler instruments and racks. You’ll see not just how to sample, but how each component in a rack builds upon on the others to create way cool instruments and sounds.

AfroDJMac starts with an explanation of sampling and how to record audio in Ableton Live, and then demonstrates how you can streamline the sampling process by sending MIDI notes to your hardware to trigger them automatically. That leads to a discussion on how to think outside of the box when sampling.

Next, AfroDJMac dives into Live’s resampling function, and how you can use it to capture audio during playback. Once the samples are recorded, the next step is to process those samples by cleaning them up and adding effects. AfroDJMac also describes when you might want to use Simpler, the more basic sampler in Ableton Live.

Moving on, you’ll explore when to use Sampler, Ableton Live’s deep and powerful sampler, and how to work with multiple samples within it. Sampler Tuning, Key Zones, Velocity Zones, the Sample Chain selector, and modulation are then all explained and explored, showing you how to make samples that are unique and stand out.

AfroDJMac now turns to the Drum Rack, revealing how it can be used for non-drum sounds, and how to layer non-drum samples in the Cells of a Drum Rack. Routing in Drum Racks is also demonstrated for even more creative control and options.

Then it’s time to delve into the other kinds of Racks in Ableton Live, such as Audio Effects Racks, MIDI Effects Racks, and Instrument Racks, and how each enables further sound design and exploration.

AfroDJMac now talks about the experimental options available, such as how you can stack up to 128 different instruments together, and create Macro knobs to cycle through drum cells or choose between instruments.

Crazy sound design options with Sampler and Simpler’s Slicing mode wrap it up, followed by how to organize your presets for easy management.

If you’re new to Ableton Live and sampling, or an experienced user who wants to get more deep into sound creation, don’t miss “Creative Racks and Sampling in Live”!

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