Linked and Unlinked Region Loops in Ableton Live
By Alex Massaad
Hey there, I have to be brief because I’m just leaving the studio to do yoga (down the hall but I wanted to share an awesome Ableton Live feature that I’ve been using almost every time I work on a Live project now. This my friends is a quick tutorial on linked and unlinked region loops within Ableton Live. I’m using Live 8, but this will apply to older versions, or just check out the demo free on the Ableton site.
Normally when you click the little “e” in the bottom left of the clip window, you are taken to the clip envelopes page. This is really neat, because rather than deal with all the envelopes (read: all the automation) in the arrangement view, this can set up automation in the session view. It also helps when we want a repeating and looping modulation on a clip.
In the image above I have a simple kick drum pattern set up. Generally on the bass track I would set up volume automation to simulate the effect of a side chain compressor with a few advantages.
First, it takes up zero cpu.
If you think about that, you could have dozens of audio clips playing with all sorts of crazy modulation playing LIVE. Zero fear of a plugin locking up a live show or any of that junk. All you would have is a simple volume automation on a white noise clip to make it pulse to the beat. Actually, don’t do that, I’m going to do that!
Second, you only have to draw it once per clip, only one curve! See image below for an unlinked region loop
If you “unlink” the region/loop button, and drag the loop brace to the first perfect loop you will notice it replaying the automation curve you drew once, on top of every consecutive beat. I hope I’ve explained this clearly and hopefully it helps someone save some time! I bet a video capture tutorial would have been more clear.