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Beats. Bars. Real Time Timestretch. MPC LIVE STANDALONE.

Hello, I'm new to using MPC Live, I'm still very young so I dont know too much about music production and how it exactly works, but I wanna get deep into it. But I'm having some trouble, I dont have a PC or Laptop and I only use my MPC in standalone mode. I use a samples frequently, I might take a part of a song and loop it until it sounds good, and/or add a couple things during the track to do the same. But, I dont exactly understand how to fit the sample into the whole sequence, or the bars so to say. Right now, the sample I'm working on fills up 3.5 bars, but I dont know how to get it to 4 to fill out the whole sequence. Can anyone help? Much appreciated!!
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    Hey, Luis!!
    The only way I can think of to make your 3.5 bar sample into 4 bars on the Live is to time-strech or "warp" it.
    Go into Menu, Program Edit, load your sample & hit warp. Use the big dial to move the sample. (You will notice the timeline above will move depending on how much you warp it).
    Big tip: DON'T do it too much, you'll start to notice that it'll sound weird the more you stretch it.
    You're only adding 1/2 a bar, so it should be okay. Once it loops around, check that you're happy with it, if not go back into Program Edit & tweak it.
    Hope that helps!
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  • Thanks @MaScHiNeHeAd, I'll try it and let you know if it works out, greatly appreciated dawg.
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    Yeah the time-stretching thing is kinda wonky how it works because they dont make it very clear on the criteria the MPC uses to determine its settings.

    I've figured out it assumes every loop you're working with is 8 beats, or 2 bars. You have to know the original tempo/beats of the sample you're working with beforehand to work it all out and adjust the time-stretch settings to match it. Its tempo detection is pretty off too, I dont know how many 160-170 bpm drum and bass loops I have, that even have the BPM in the filename, the MPC thinks are half speed and sets at 80-85BPM. Unless its got metadata that tags it, its hit or miss hehe.

    Since youre working with a 3.5 bar loop you want to turn into 4, you have to start by treating it as a 4 bar loop from the start, and you have to look at it in Beats instead of Bars now. Otherwise the tempo you use is just going to make you a new 3.5 bar loop adjusted to the tempo of the song. So it's 3.5 bars, which is 4*3.5, or 14 beats right now. You want to treat it as a 4*4/16 beat/4 bar loop. When you open the time stretch window, set the Beats to 16. It will change the original tempo to match the length of the sample with a 16 beat loop (so if you have a 16 second file, its going to be 60bpm, an 8 second sample, 120bpm, etc). After that have at it and adjust the new tempo to the same as the song. The time stretching actually isn't TOO bad, Ive taken some drum loops down a whole octave/half tempo with minimal artifacts. The Warp setting was even better, and I haven't even tried anything other than the default 'MPC' warp which is the least CPU intensive.
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  • Hey Luis,

    Thanks for posting!

    Happy to see that MaScHiNeHeAd and Monotremata already gave you some great advice! Another technique that you may want to try is creating a patched phrase. This will work better with more percussive samples that have clear transients. Essentially, a patched phrase will chop slices at each transient and stretch or compress the space between them.

    You can experiment with this by loading your sample into Sample Edit. Enter Chop mode and set the type to Threshold. Hold down the Shift button and select Patched Phrase under Convert To. Select the amount of bars that you would like to stretch or compress the sample into. Tap Do It and the new sample will be added directly to the Project's pool.

    Hope this helps! Let us know if you have any questions.

    Thanks for your guidance, MaScHiNeHeAd and Monotremata!
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  • Thanks for the replies guys. It's been a big help and it's very well appreciated. Everything is going great and I'm learning a lot more. Thanks again to all of you!!
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