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Time Stretching Tips

How can I adjust the tempo of a Drumdrops Multi-Track Performance?

  1. Cubase and Nuendo users benefit from being able to use Audio Warp
  2. Pro Tools users: yes, in theory you can use Beat Detective and Elastic Audio, but we recommend you prepare your loops in Pro Tools and export individual multi-track files into Abelton Live. Make sure High Quality is selected in the clip menu and in the preferences of Ableton. Then if you keep all the clips you're working on selected, Live will apply the same warp points and changes across all the clips simultaneously. For more info click here
  3. Pro Tools TDM users can use Beat Detective
  4. PC users can use Beat Quantizer for more info click here
  5. Use Melodyne for real time Time Stretching, for more info click here
  6. Logic: coming soon
  7. Cakewalk: coming soon

How can I adjust the tempo of an existing song (in separate audio files) to fit a Drumdrops Multi-Track Performance?

  1. Cubase and Nuendo users benefit from being able to use Audio Warp
  2. Pro Tools users: prepare your sections of the song in ProTools and export individual audio files (bass, guitars, keyboards, vocals etc) into a new folder and drag into Abelton Live. Make sure High Quality is selected in the clip menu and in the preferences. Then if you keep all the clips you're working on selected, Live will apply the same warp points and changes across all the clips simultaneously. Ableton will now run in Sync with Pro Tools and because of the Tempo Map will stretch the audio accurately to fit to the drums playing back in ProTools.
  3. Use Melodyne for real time Time Stretching, for more info click here
  4. Logic: coming soon
  5. Cakewalk: coming soon

Digidesign Beat Detective:

Beat Detective gives you the choice of analysing all the drum tracks and cutting up the audio in slices based on the transients/hits on every separate drum track ie. kick, snare etc or you can pick specific drum tracks and then apply the transients of that single drum track to the remaining drum tracks.

Beat Detective allows you to separate the tracks based on the transients you've analysed, so if you analyse just the kick and snare track you will end up with better defined transients than if you analyse all the tracks. Once you've made those choices, then you shift-click onto the other tracks and apply the same dividing points globally ( across all tracks ).

When you're in BD always select the grid mode and no smaller grid than 1 beat. The first thing you do in BD is "capture selection" and check if the bars entered by BD are the same as your selection. Then when you analyse, check the points to see if there are not "false triggers". To delete a point put yourself in "grab mode"(the hand). If you press 'alt' you can delete the unwanted hits.

Tips

  1. Group your drum tracks when using beat detective to preserve the phase relationships between all the mics.
  2. Always treat the drum tracks as one instrument unless you are replacing things with samples.
  3. Make a selection on just the kick and snare track intially, run through checking all the triggers are on the right beat, then add the other drum tracks to the selection just before clicking the "separate" button
  4. Focus on one section, make sure there are no abnormalities, and move on to the next section. Try to work with only 4-8 bars at a time to avoid dealing with too many hits. usually 16th notes will work fine and as long as the playing is pretty close to the beat, you should not have a noticeable problem.
  5. The problem with editing a drummer is the hits on the hat where the drummer plays the hat ahead of the kick or snare. Those edits are not usable as the hat will sound cut off or if you use the hat then the kick or snare will be off.
  6. Good drummers play around the beat to create their unique feel. For instance, on beat two they may hit the snare 10 ms before the beat, and on beat four they may lay the snare hit back a few milliseconds. This gives the song its own groove. Quantize that out and you lose the feel.
  7. First capture a 16-bar selection, apply Beat Detective, then work in quarter-note and 16th-note chunks and such until satisfied with the results.
  8. Crossfades at 1ms is a good starting point
  9. Tempo Mapping By Hand in ProTools - You can use the "tab to transient" function and "identify beat" to identify tempo or set up a grid on a pre-recorded audio track or group of tracks. To activate tab to transient you press the little box with the waveform at the top left of the edit screen. Once selected, shift + tab identifies the next transient, hitting tab again sets the cursor at that transient. You can then select "identify beat" Enter the correct values and repeat the procedure until you're done.

Why Quantize?

Audio Quantizing is usually thought of as correction tool whilst recording and editing, though if over used it can remove the human feel. This can be very useful to correct small errors or to change the feel if you so wish. Experimenting is the name of the game.

Other Uses:

  1. Alter the feel based on the groove extracted from another performance.
  2. Adjust a few wrong hits without the need of re-recording.
  3. Quantize two loops against each other to make them play together without getting phasing or clashes in feel.
  4. Tighten up the recording but not neccesarily to 100%, so you keep some of the orginal feel whilst making it tighter.
  5. What if I want to keep the groove but want to change or overdub new sounds such as snare or kick? -

    ProTools users:

    SoundReplacer allows you to replace or mix an existing audio track with new samples from your sound library. SoundReplacer allows you to retain the original feel by matching the timing and automatically adjusting the dynamics of the replacement sound to match the changing levels of the original performance.

    Up to three separate samples can be used to blend with or completely replace an original performance. Variations in amplitude within the performance determine which sample is triggered at a given time.

    Logic, Cubase, Nuendo users:

    apulSoft apTrigga2 Audio sample trigger plug in allows you to replace or mix an existing audio track with new samples from your sound library. For more info click here.