A very brief and belated trick, but a really brilliant one if you don’t know it. It’s one of those hidden features you might never discover. You’re working in Live’s…

Ableton Live Tips: Make a Loop to Fit the Editor in One Click

Ableton Live Tips: Make a Loop to Fit the Editor in One Click

A very brief and belated trick, but a really brilliant one if you don’t know it. It’s one of those hidden features you might never discover.

You’re working in Live’s Note Editor or MIDI Editor. It’s the usual scenario – you have a loop playing, but it is longer or shorter than the editor window, and you want it to fit. Happens all the time, and it’s a pain.

If you’ve not discovered the method I’m about to show you, then it’s a long winded process that you need to undertake involving Start, End, Loop Start, Loop End, Loop Brace, Grid Width, Zoom In, Zoom Out, and Shake it all About.

Alternatively you can use MacAbleton’s 1-click method. For this you need the middle section of Clip View open if you want to do it with the trackpad or Mouse Keys (or mouse if you are old fashioned and enjoy pain).

The bit I’m talking about is called Sample in an Audio Editor, and is toggled with the middle of the three little buttons in the bottom left hand corner, the one with the waveform symbol.

Show Loop in Ableton Live's Audio Editor

You can see that the word Length has an oval drawn round it to highlight it. If you click on this the loop will be re-sized to fit the editor exactly!

In a MIDI Editor it’s very similar. The section you need open is called Notes and the little symbol, if you need it, is the ♫ (notes) one.

Show Loop in Live's MIDI Editor

If you didn’t already know this tip it will save you lots of time.

How to do it without the mouse/trackpad? Well there don’t seem to be any ready-made shortcuts for this. There are shortcuts for moving the loop but they require getting the Loop Brace in focus first, and there is no shortcut for that. I did make one using iKey but it’s not ideal. You make one for the word Length using the position of the word and a mouse movement in iKey, but this would necessitate having the exact same views open every time in Detail View and is therefore not particularly practical.

The only straightforward keys-only way I can think of for things like this is the trusty old mouse keys methods. If you know of another way please let me know!

Founder of MacAbleton.com

1 Comment
  1. Yeah, I’ve been playing with this pack, too. I was able to nip some nice one0-shots out of loops and cratee a drum rack with my own stuff. Feeling pret-ty smug that I could figure out how to do that on my own. LOL

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