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Making beats with Ultrabeat

From: Logic Pro X Essential Training

Video: Making beats with Ultrabeat

If you're perusing patches in the library, you might find yourself in the drum machine category. These patches fall into a category called sequencer patches. When viewing the smart controls, you'll come across some mapped buttons specifically for sequencers. Ultrabeat is Logic Pro X's main sequencing drum machine. In this movie, we'll get up and running with Ultrabeat. What is a sequencer? The dictionary a programmable electronic device for storing sequences of musical notes, chords or rhythms and transmitting them. So technically Logic Pro X as a whole is a sequencer.

Making beats with Ultrabeat

If you're perusing patches in the library, you might find yourself in the drum machine category. These patches fall into a category called sequencer patches. When viewing the smart controls, you'll come across some mapped buttons specifically for sequencers. Ultrabeat is Logic Pro X's main sequencing drum machine. In this movie, we'll get up and running with Ultrabeat. What is a sequencer? The dictionary a programmable electronic device for storing sequences of musical notes, chords or rhythms and transmitting them. So technically Logic Pro X as a whole is a sequencer.

That actually the Ultrabeat instrument is a sequencer in itself. And has the capacity to store sequences of musical notes in the form of drum patterns. It's a sequencer within a sequencer. To check this out, let's open the Boutique 909 patch. I'm going to go ahead and make a new track, choose Software Instrument>open>library>click Create, and down here in the drum machine category, we have the Boutique 909. So there it is, it loads up, and close the library.

So if you notice the boutique 909 like the analog spheres is a track stack. It has this disclosure triangle here. If I open that up, we see all these different tracks that make up our drum kick. But on the first track, the kick drum, that's where the Ultrabeat instrument lives. So I'm going to click right in the center of the Ultrabeat software instrument to open it up and we see Ultrabeat here for the first time. When you first open Ultrabeat it looks like a confusing monster, I'll admit. But let's walk through it so we can understand it. On the left here we have all the drum sounds that make up our Ultrabeat preset.

If you notice they're mapped to a tiny little keyboard next to it. You can actually click on that keyboard to play it. So we have our kick drum, snare drum, high hat. (SOUND) And you notice they follow, typical general MIDI assignments. So usually the kick drum is a low C, as we see here. snare drum is the D and high hat is the F sharp. That's a common general MIDI drum mapping. So also each sound. Notice the kick is currently selected. I select the snare.

That becomes the new selected sound. It has a little tiny mixer next to it. We can mute. We can solo, and we can choose the Volume with this small little knob here. So you can kind of mix together the levels and the panning of each of your sounds that way. Notice also, when I select different sounds here, things out on the right here change. So this is just basically, a giant processing chamber here, where I can load up each sound. In this case they're sourcing from actual samples, as you see down here from our actual 909 drum machine.

But then there's a bunch of filters, LFOs, and different ways to manipulate those sounds. Again, these are all part of just a preset patch here, so we don't have to even come out here and mess with these, they've kind of already been dialed in for us, but if you're into tweaking, you can go out here and open up filters, change resonances, EQ things differently, Change envelopes. You could do all that stuff out here on the right and once you're happy with the sound of the hit you can then use Ultrabeat like any other software instrument. You can just have it in the track and play or record MIDI events.

I'm just going to close it for a second and close this and you know, this is one way to use a drum machine is just to go out to my MIDI keyboard here, let me get the right octave here. There it is. (MUSIC) So I'm just playing you know, low C. F sharp, D and it's playing back those sounds, just like a normal software instrument. And then sort of bypassing the sequencer capability. So that's one way to deal with it. But let's get into the sequencer capabilities. I'm going to go back and open up the Ultrabeat software instrument, and the sequencer capabilities, you get a quick view of them down here in the bottom.

So this shows us a pattern that's there. I can also turn on the sequencer here to activate it. It was off, by default. But, once the sequencer is on, I can then just play it back even without playing back the full Logic timeline. I can just play back the sequencer itself. And let's hear this pattern that's been stored in here. (MUSIC) So we have a grid of 32 subdivisions down here. And this is not the easiest way to look at it but there is a better view where we can actually see the sequencer in full view.

So it's down here on the right. So if you're working with a sequencer I recommend clicking on this button and then you get to see a much more easily discernible grid pattern and you can see that we had the kick on that pattern. Which was a pretty set pattern stored up. It's on all fours, as they say. Four on the floor kick. We have a clap. We have some other instruments. You can see the blue dots are where those patterns lie. Let me play it again so we can see that. (MUSIC) See the play head moving across the screen. (MUSIC) Okay, so that's a stored up pattern in there.

To change patterns, it's down here on the bottom. So if I open this up I can change patterns. That was pattern 10. And notice they are actually mapped to different notes. So that's another way to use Ultrabeat. Once you have the pattern sequencer on, you can then play for example minus one octave the A note will just trigger this pattern. Let's hear another pattern, this is pattern nine, different pattern. (MUSIC) And you can check out pattern eight, these are all just stored in this patch. (MUSIC) That's just a kick drum. Sort of a fill.

And here we have 15 already stored-up patterns. But below that we have some blank patterns. Let's go down to the 16th pattern and we now have a clean slate and we can actually make our own pattern in here. So let's go ahead and do that just so we can see how this works. So we'll start with a kick drum, make sure that's the selected track and we'll put the kick drum on beats one, five, nine, 13, 17, 21, 25 and 29. That's a four on the floor kick and it sounds like this. (MUSIC) And next we're going to hear a snare drum and we're going to check it out.

(SOUND) Sounds like a good sound. Click on the Snare drum. And let's put the snare drum on five, 13, 21 and 29. So this is kind of like every other beat. So we got. (MUSIC) Next we're going to put a clap. And we're going to do this in every other snare. So we're going to go up here and I'm going to find a clap sound. It's. Right here. (MUSIC) Sounds like that. So let's put a clap on 13 and 29.

Hear that. (MUSIC) And one more sound we're going to add, and it's going to be the high hat. So we're going to go up to close hat, select that, and we're just going to drag across and make a high hat on every beat and just see what that sounds like. (MUSIC) So that's one sound we can do and we're going to actually go ahead and use this as our first pattern that we stored, it's number 16.

But we're going to alter it and make two more patterns based on this pattern. So, one thing we want to do is just right-click here on the patterns bar itself, and just say copy. Now we'll go to 17. Again, we had a blank slate, but we copied it to the clipboard. Right-click again, and say Paste. And there's our original pattern we have but we're going to alter it now. We're actually going to take out a couple of high hats and make a diffus, slightly different pattern. Let's hear what this sounds like. I'm just kind of arbitrarily taking out high hats and we might add a MIDI and high zap in various locations.

So we have zap like (SOUND). If I zap I actually I mean different percussions so let's put a couple of those in a couple of spots here. And do like that and percussion three, we'll put here. Let's just see what this sounds like. (MUSIC) Cool. I'm into it. So now we have 16, our original pattern. We have 17, our new pattern. Let's go ahead and make one more.

And the last pattern we're going to do is sort of, a fill. So I'm going to go ahead and copy 17 to the Clipboard. I'm going to go down to an empty one, 18. I'm going to Paste that in. And at the end of this, I'm going to take out these two little clicks here. But, I'm going to do a big snare fill on snare two. So, let's see. If I just kind of drag this across. And this time, I'm going to look down here at the velocities. And I'm going to make it get louder and louder as it goes. Velocity is related to how loud and how strong the sound gets triggered.

So I think it would be cool if I sort of made it sort of get louder and louder and louder to the very end where the last four are the loudest, or the last three at least are the loudest. And you can have some variation in there, too. It's kind of nice to have a be (INAUDIBLE). Little more human, if it's not a perfect line. Let's hear this. (MUSIC) So now I have three patterns. I got 16, 17, and 18, I've stored all those in there. And now, I want to get them out into our main window.

The way to do this, is actually pretty simple, but you have to know this little trick. Is, you go over here and see where it says pattern, there's this little box here and it says Drag to Arrange Window. So I'll start with the first pattern 16, just go ahead and drag this, it let's me drag it in there you see a little + button and when I let go that pattern just gets dropped right into that bar one there, so it's a two bar pattern. So that was pattern 16. I'm going to do 17 for the next two bars, drop that right in there, and then I'm going to do 17 again, I can either loop this or just go ahead and drag it back out, drop it in there.

And for the last bar I'm going to do that fill, so that's 18. We've converted our Ultrabeat grid into regular old MIDI regions here. I can go ahead and actually turn off the sequencer, I don't want to double up. I don't want to have the sequencer from Ultrabeat playing, and the sequencer from Logic at the same time. because remember now, we can bypass the Ultrabeat, because Logic itself is a sequencer, and we have our sequences. Out in the main window here. So we want to turn off the sequencer like I just did, and I can go ahead and play back Logic timeline, and those beats I made are out in timeline and they should go along with the song, let's hear it.

(MUSIC) So that's great. We used Ultrabeats sequencer to make these grid patterns, we were able to just drag them right out into the timeline and have them become part of our arrangement with all the other tracks.

I want to show you one other cool thing that you can do with this Ultrabeat pattern. Remember, this is just a group of MIDI notes. You know, if I double-click on it, you can see it's in the piano roll here. I can actually take these up into our drummer track and hear this pattern through the drum set that's in the drummer track. Let's try this, go over here, and just go into bar 13 and drop that it in there. So now our MIDI notes are going to be heard through the cool drum set sounds on the drummer track. Let's check that out.

(MUSIC) So that was that fill we made and you know it sounded totally different because the sound set from the drummer is more like a real drum set rather than a 909. But you can see, the point is that it's just a simple MIDI pattern but we use the power of the Ultrabeats grid and drum machine sequencing to make it. So now you've been properly introduced into Logic's Ultrabeat instrument. It's one of the most complex tools to get into in Logic but once you understand it you'll be making beats in no time.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Logic Pro X Essential Training
Logic Pro X Essential Training

73 video lessons · 14670 viewers

Scott Hirsch
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 3m 14s
    1. Welcome
      1m 11s
    2. What you should know before watching this course
      49s
    3. Using the exercise files
      1m 14s
  2. 25m 16s
    1. Installing Logic Pro X
      3m 20s
    2. Exploring templates
      7m 52s
    3. Working with audio interfaces
      4m 21s
    4. Intro to MIDI in Logic Pro X
      6m 25s
    5. Getting to know Logic preferences
      3m 18s
  3. 47m 3s
    1. Exploring the new main window
      6m 19s
    2. Working with windows and screensets
      5m 42s
    3. Controlling playback
      6m 25s
    4. Getting to know the tools
      3m 30s
    5. Useful, custom key commands
      7m 53s
    6. Naming tracks and regions
      6m 50s
    7. Controlling Logic playback with the Logic Remote iPad app
      2m 27s
    8. Saving and going mobile with your project
      7m 57s
  4. 1h 2m
    1. Exploring the way patches are created
      10m 47s
    2. Discovering Smart controls
      6m 36s
    3. Working with Track Stacks
      5m 27s
    4. Making beats with Ultrabeat
      12m 25s
    5. How to create drum parts using the new Drummer track
      13m 29s
    6. Diving deeper into how Drummer tracks can be customized
      6m 44s
    7. Jamming on iPad with Logic Remote
      6m 35s
  5. 43m 37s
    1. An introduction to MIDI recording
      9m 23s
    2. Recording MIDI in separate takes
      8m 0s
    3. Merge recording with MIDI
      6m 30s
    4. Working with Step Input recording
      6m 49s
    5. Exploring MIDI plugins: The Arpeggiator
      7m 45s
    6. Exploring MIDI plugins: Chord Trigger
      5m 10s
  6. 36m 44s
    1. How to quantize MIDI performances
      9m 52s
    2. Editing your performances in the Piano Roll Editor
      8m 51s
    3. Using MIDI Draw in the Piano Roll Editor
      5m 26s
    4. Alternative MIDI editing approaches with the Step Editor
      6m 41s
    5. Utilizing the Event List
      5m 54s
  7. 52m 12s
    1. Importing audio
      9m 31s
    2. Exploring Apple Loops
      9m 47s
    3. Creating Apple Loops
      6m 5s
    4. Adjusting tempos
      5m 34s
    5. Exploring Flex Time
      7m 10s
    6. Working with the groove track
      2m 41s
    7. Beat mapping your project
      6m 19s
    8. Importing elements from one project to another
      5m 5s
  8. 29m 31s
    1. Setting up for recording
      7m 52s
    2. Recording a band
      7m 55s
    3. Punching in and loop recording with audio
      6m 58s
    4. Recording multiple takes and comping parts
      6m 46s
  9. 27m 27s
    1. Working with audio regions
      8m 52s
    2. Exploring drag modes with audio regions
      4m 43s
    3. Exploring Flex Pitch
      5m 11s
    4. Editing in the Audio File Editor
      3m 4s
    5. Arranging projects with Arrangement Track
      5m 37s
  10. 16m 43s
    1. Composing in the Score Editor
      8m 7s
    2. Editing in the Score Editor
      4m 37s
    3. Creating scores and printing lead sheets for musicians
      3m 59s
  11. 17m 14s
    1. Setting up for a sync-video project
      6m 14s
    2. Scoring music to video
      6m 45s
    3. Round-tripping with Final Cut Pro
      4m 15s
  12. 10m 55s
    1. Surround hardware requirements
      4m 34s
    2. Using the Surround Panner
      6m 21s
  13. 52m 48s
    1. Setting up for the mix
      6m 20s
    2. Mapping controls for hands-on mixing
      2m 9s
    3. Panning in Logic
      5m 20s
    4. Mixing with patches
      4m 35s
    5. Working with submixes and Track Stacks
      4m 28s
    6. Adding reverb and delay to your mix
      5m 54s
    7. Giving your mix life and movement with automation
      5m 48s
    8. Recording automation in real time
      8m 5s
    9. Optimize CPU performance with Freeze Tracks
      5m 25s
    10. Mastering with your output fader
      4m 44s
  14. 14m 44s
    1. Bouncing down your mix
      6m 27s
    2. Importing from GarageBand and Logic Pro 9 and earlier
      4m 28s
    3. Sharing your music
      3m 49s
  15. 35s
    1. Next steps
      35s

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