Sometimes the experience of playing instruments and synths, and singing can feel more creative and inspiring when using effects straight away.
If you don’t own any actual pedals, then in this article you will learn how to build one in Ableton Live that you can use while playing or for quick sound design purposes.
We’re going to build an Audio Effect Rack and use Macro Variations to create “presets” which can be MIDI mapped to any cheap MIDI controller to be used to switch between the presets physically.
In this example I will build one for guitars, however you can build one for any other instrument. The sky’s the limit!
Step 1: Insert a couple of Audio Effects onto the same chain within the Audio Effect Rack. In this example we’re using Amp, Saturator, Overdrive, Hybrid Reverb and Delay, but you can really get creative here with other effects too!
Step 2: Now map some of the main parameters of the effects to Macro Controls. Once done, you can rename and re-colour the Macro Controls for better navigation. To map a parameter to a Macro; right-click/Ctrl+click on the parameter and choose the desired Macro Control.
Step 3: Adjust the Macro Controls and each time you make big adjustments capture the Macros’ current state into Macro Variations. To Create the Macro Snapshots, click the “New” button and once everything is to your taste hit the camera (Overwrite Macro Variation) button to store the macro’s position into a “preset”.
Step 4: Rename the Macro Variations using the key-command of Cmd+R or Ctrl+R. Once connected to your MIDI controller, enter MIDI Map Mode by hitting Cmd+M on Mac or Ctrl+M on Windows. To start MIDI Mapping the Variation Up, Down, Variation Launch and Latest Macro Variation Launch buttons.