Go Back   Cockos Incorporated Forums > REAPER Forums > REAPER for Live Use

Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 06-17-2019, 06:01 AM   #1
Dave 2099
Human being with feelings
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Maryland, USA
Posts: 17
Default Live looping project template and custom actions

Awhile back I created a post about the custom actions that I use in live looping. I think my explanation in that older post on how they work was not clear, so I'm putting up a new post with (hopefully) a fuller explanation of how it all works along with updated files. Feedback is appreciated.

I am not a programmer, so everything Iíve come up with uses existing actions and custom actions. My hope is that they will be of use to other unskilled newbies like myself.

My project template and the custom actions let me do four basic things:
1) cycle through input tracks for various real and virtual instruments,
2) toggle FX tracks that receive audio sends from input tracks (like stomp boxes)
3) record new media items that automatically become regions and move out of the way to new tracks, and
4) jump between regions for different song parts.

I use a Behringer FCB1010 to trigger all these actions, so I can create a song with multiple looping parts from scratch, hands-free. Though itís not perfect so some hands-on adjustments are occasionally required.

Iím including a project template and examples of the custom actions that can be tweaked to suit your live looping style.

Here are the parts:

Input, FX, and output tracks

I have separate input tracks for each instrument. The signal from each instrument passes through a series of FX tracks via routing (not folders), and then to an output track (which is needed by the rec/bump custom action). Note that the output track has to be the last track at the bottom of your TCP.

For example, my baritone guitar signal goes into two tracks: a clean guitar track and another for bass tone, and I use a McMillen BopPad and an Alesis SamplePad Pro to trigger various virtual drum kits. Each FX track can be turned on/off like a stomp box.

Each input track and FX track is record-disabled. The last FX track in each sequence sends to a dedicated output track which is set to record stereo output. It is important to record-disable every other track because you only want the output track(s) to be the one(s) that the Rec/bump/create region to affect.

Cycle record-arm previous/next input track

The input tracks are grouped (Group 1), each with master status. Also, each input track and its accompanying FX tracks are grouped, with the input as the master and the FX tracks as slaves in each group. Refer to the attached pic "Group.jpeg." They are record-arm-grouped so that when the input track is selected by the cycle record-arm action, the FX tracks in its group are record-armed too. In addition, to minimize CPU activity, cycling to an input track and its group toggles all the other input and FX tracks offline. One obvious limitation is that you lose delay/reverb tails. But I use this for scratchpad song-writing so thatís not as important. I can record the more-realized songs later properly.

Note that the output track(s) need to be included in every input-FX group so that the output(s) is/are always armed for recording.

Record/bump/create region

This custom action starts recording with one click, and with the next click it stops recording at the end of the measure, moves the resulting media item to a new track at the bottom of the TCP, and creates a region based on this item. I usually create some kind of drum beat as my first region, then add bass and other guitar parts, other percussion parts, etc. Each new item goes to the bottom of the TCP.

I havenít been able to figure out how to avoid creating a new region when one already exists (feedback appreciated).

Copy/paste items and create new region
Create duplicate region, create 2X duplicate region (without copy/paste media items)

These custom actions let you create additional regions based on the selected region and the edit/playback cursor moves to the new region when it reaches the end of the current region. If you are doing something like old school looping want to add a new part to the existing scene, copy/paste/create new region lets you copy the region/scene and its media items to an identical region next to the original. (This one has a glitch and I usually have to move the pasted media items down to the tracks they belong on. Feedback appreciated.)

The other custom actions just create new (empty) regions the same size or twice the size of the one youíre in when you trigger it, and the play cursor goes to the beginning of the new region. I.e., does not copy media items.

The included files are:
* project template (to show my input tracks, FX tracks, grouping, and routing setups)
* cycle previous/next input tracks
* examples of toggle FX tracks actions
* rec/bump/create regions
* copy/paste items/create duplicate region
* previous/next region

I hope others find this stuff useful. Iíd especially like to hear from people who have other ways for accomplishing the actions.

Thanks for reading this lengthy post.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Groups.jpg (58.3 KB, 139 views)
File Type: jpg Routing.jpg (59.1 KB, 140 views)
Attached Files
File Type: zip live looping template and actions.zip (71.3 KB, 45 views)

Last edited by Dave 2099; 06-17-2019 at 10:17 AM. Reason: added screen shots
Dave 2099 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-17-2019, 06:43 AM   #2
Human being with feelings
mschnell's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Krefeld, Germany
Posts: 7,904

Thanks a lot for sharing all this valuable information !
mschnell is online now   Reply With Quote

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 01:08 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions Inc.