The steps outlined in the article below are the same steps that are covered in the video above.
In this article, we are going to walk you through how to use the Novation Loopmasters sample pack to remix projects from the Launchpad Arcade site inside Ableton Live.
Samples are simply audio files, such as .wav files, which you are free to use inside your music production software to make your own music. These can be things such as drum loops, synth loops, vocal samples and much more.
You have access to a range of loops and one-shots, which will be explained later in this article, and we’re also going to show you how to use these samples to customise and remix a Launchpad Arcade project.
To download the Novation Loopmasters sample pack, log in to your account at https://novationmusic.com/register, and select ‘Downloads and Activation Codes’.
Scroll down to where you see Novation Loopmasters Samples, and select ‘Click Here’ to download. The file is relatively big and so may take several minutes to download.
You will then find this file in your downloads folder. I’m going to tell you how to find this on both a Mac and a Windows PC.
On a Mac, double-click on the downloaded file to unzip it, and then move it to where you would like to store the files. If you don’t have a specific place that you keep your samples, we recommend moving the files to ‘Documents’ so that they don’t get accidentally deleted if you clear out your downloads.
On a PC, go to ‘Downloads’, right-click on the downloaded folder and select Extract All. Ensure that the ‘Show extracted files when complete’ box is selected, and then select browse. If you don’t have a specific place that you keep your samples, we recommend moving the files to ‘Documents’ so that they don’t get accidentally deleted if you clear out your downloads.
Next up, we want to set this up so that you can access the samples without having to leave Ableton Live to help you stay in the creative flow. To do this, open Ableton Live, and in the browser section on the left-hand side, select ‘Add Folder’.
Then, navigate to where you saved the Loopmasters samples, select the folder and click ‘open’.
You will now see this Loopmasters pack on the left-hand side of Ableton, and you can access all the samples without having to leave Ableton.
You’ll see that the pack is split into three different years, and then further split into different sample packs. Each pack is focused towards a specific genre of music ranging from techno to blues to funk to house and more.
As I mentioned earlier, this sample collection contains a mixture of ‘loops’ and ‘one-shots’. A loop is a piece of audio that generally plays over the course of a bar or more, and repeats, such as a drum beat like this one.
A ‘one-shot’ is typically a shorter sound like an individual drum hit, which is typically placed wherever you like in the project. These are most commonly used for people to make their own drum patterns.
Inside the majority of these packs, you will find a ‘Loops’ and ‘Sounds and FX’ folder. Broadly speaking, this splits up the loops and one-shots in each pack.
The majority of the samples will be labelled depending on their content. Loops will be labelled tell you what kind of audio will be in this loop, for example drums or bass. They will also tell you what tempo the loop was originally recorded at, for example 127 bpm. Loops are set to play back at Ableton’s tempo, which you can set up here. Any loops that will be playing notes/chords such as a bass loop or a piano loop will tell you which key the loop is in, such as Fm.
Due to the fact that they do not play in a loop, one-shots will not contain tempo information. If one-shots contain pitch information, such as a bass hit, they will be labelled with pitch information.
You can create idea using loops by dragging them into clip slots. Inside Ableton, we have both audio and MIDI tracks, which run vertically like columns. In these audio and MIDI tracks, you’ll see these empty cells which are called clip slots.
You can only play one clip per track at any one time. Generally, we recommend inserting sounds of the same type (for example, drums) into the same track. This means, you'll only have one loop of a certain type playing at a time.
Let’s open one of the Launchpad Arcade project from the Launchpad Projects folder that we set up in the Launchpad Arcade video, and use the Loopmasters samples to make some changes.
Let’s say we want to replace the drums. Currently, everything in this project is an audio loop, so we can simply swap out loops by clicking on the loop that we want to get rid of, and pressing the backspace key.
Then, we can look for another drum loop to put in its place. You can then play this loop by pressing on the play button, and adjust the volume if you need to by using this gain control.
You can add any other kind of loop to the project, such as bass loops, synth loops, guitar loops and more.