ABLETON LIVE – Finding the Root Note Of Any Sample!04:20


This tutorial, made by Joshua Casper shows you a quick and easy way to perfectly identify the note of any sample in Ableton Live!

The following article was created by Joshua Casper and published under his video tutorial on Youtube.

Finding The Root Note In Ableton

Step 1 : Load a Sample

I think it’s best to use the Sampler instrument from Ableton for this. It allows for the designation of the root note or key for any sample you load. That will come in handy for future use of the samples we tune.

For this example I will use a snare from Freaky Loops. Ableton’s Simpler, default settings, Root key C3

Step 2 : Make a Generic Midi Clip

When you first load a new sample into Sampler the default note value is C3. Make a short midi clip that will loop. Add a midi note on C3. That is important for identifying the correct pitch of the sample.

Basic Midi Loop, Short Hit on C3

Step 3 : Add the Spectrum Audio Effect

Now, behind the Sampler instrument drop the Spectrum Audio Effect. Then click the little arrow next to the device’s power button to maximize the display window.

Enlarge Spectrum’s Display Window

Step 4 : Trigger the Sample, Make the Reading

Now play the midi clip. You will see the spectrum analysis lines light up across the viewer window. What you are looking for is the highest peak.

Let the sample play a few times a move your mouse to that highest peak. Then look to the small box in the bottom left corner of the Spectrum’s viewer window.

There will be 3 values. We are looking for the one in the middle. For the example below you can see that the snare’s fundamental note is a E2.

This means that the snare is tuned to an E2. SUCCESS!

Step 5 : Change the Root Key & Save

Now that we know that this snare is hitting at an E3 we can change the root note for the Sampler device to E3 as well. Then save the preset with a proper name.

Now when ever we want to use that snare we can just add the midi to whichever note we want it to hit at and we can be sure it is perfect!

About Joshua Casper

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