Loading your own Samples into Logic’s Ultrabeat

Almost all Logic users instinctively reach for the EXS24 at the mere mention of "sample". By all accounts the EXS24 is a great sampler, though not as full featured as 3rd party products like Kontakt,  

Almost all Logic users instinctively reach for the EXS24 at the mere mention of "sample". By all accounts the EXS24 is a great sampler, though not as full featured as 3rd party products like Kontakt, it is highly integrated into Logic and it's easy to create sampler instruments directly from Logic's Arrange area too.

There is another sampler in Logic disguised as a Drum Instrument... Ultrabeat doubles up as a drum synth and a drum sample playback instrument. It's extremely easy to use and thanks to it's built-in Sequencer, programing patterns is fun and quick to do. There are a ton of settings, with a maximum of 25 assignable sounds. Some of these are sample based.

In this Quick Tip we'll look at how you can load your own audio samples into Ultrabeat.

There is one gotcha before we start. Ultrabeat is limited to playing back up to 10 seconds per sample. It is after all designed to be a drum machine and most drum samples are much shorter than 10 seconds.

Step 1 - Choose a Kit, Any Kit

Insert an instance of Ultrabeat on your Software Instrument Track's Channel Strip. Choose the kit of your choice. I'm using the default setting.

Step 2 - Making Space for your Sample

Like most conventional samplers you need to choose which key to map the sample onto. In Ultrabeat we need to do this before loading the audio file.

I've chosen to load the sample onto Sound 24 (Wood Block). This is mapped to B2 on a MIDI Keyboard. Simply select the sound by clicking on it's blue bar in the Assignment section.

Notice how the faceplate changes to display the settings used to create this sound. We could load our sample into this existing sound, but some elements of the woodblock would playback with our sample. If you want to do this skip the next step. If, however, you want to reset this sound then read on...

Step 3 - Initialise the Sound

Right-click on the sound in the Assignment area and choose Init > Sample

The Oscillator, Envelope and Filter sections will all be reset.

Step 4 - Load it Up

Take a look at the OSC2 section. Specifically the rectangle / window. There are three modes used to create sounds for OSC2: Phase OSC, sample and modal. Make sure you select sample to display the Sample window.

NOTE: Only OSC 2 can load audio samples.

At the top of the sample window in OSC2 click on the no sample loaded text. From the pop-up menu choose Load Sample.

There are lots of additional sounds designed for Ultrabeat in the default location. If you prefer to use your own audio file navigate to and select your chosen audio file from the "Load Sample" window.

Step 5 - Rename and Play

Now that your audio file is loaded into OSC2's Sampler, we can rename the sound int he Assignment area from init.Sample to something more intelligible.

Double-click on the name and enter your desired name in the text field.

Now we can see the audio waveform and the name of the audio file in OSC2's Sample window.

Finally, I've placed a trigger for my newly added sample in the Step Sequencer and can now spend some time creating a pattern and getting creative with Ultrabeat's sculpting, modulating and sound designing abilities!

Enjoy making your own custom drum kits and beats in Ultrabeat - and drop us a comment below if you have any questions, tips or just want to say Hi!

If the synthesis sections of Ultrabeat's interface leave you confused... Check out this tutorial below to help you unravel & break-down how Ultrabeat works - the easy way!

Rounik is the Executive Editor for Ask.Audio & macProVideo. He's built a crack team of professional musicians and writers to create one of the most visited online resources for news, review, tutorials and interviews for modern musician and producer. As an Apple Certified Trainer for Logic Pro Rounik has taught teachers, professional... Read More


Nice tip, Rounik! Very clearly explained, as always.

And yes, 'Ultrabeat Unleashed is an excellent tut. Very thorough and detailed.
Thanks Adam!
Hey Rounik,

Can you drag and drop into Ultrabeat? Are there limits on what kind of audio files it will play? Thanks for another sweet tip!
Gary Hiebner
Great. I like the idea of using the step sequencer in Ultrabeat. This makes sense in building up a drum pattern with your own samples.
@ Ed, Yes you can drag and drop audio files from the Finder and even from the Audio Bin in Logic directly into OSC2's Sample window.

CAF and Aiff are definitely accepted... will check on Wave and others...

@ Gary,

Yup. I agree and I like to use Ultrabeat's Sequencer for less standard drum sounds... some ambient samples. You can make some lovely textured sounds that way.
I love ultrabeat. I always wished apple had done what Native Instruments did with Maschine. Great tip. Logic's Ultrabeat Tutorial is great purchase.
Gary Hiebner
@ Rounik.

Great tip. Now I wanna make some weird and ambient Ultrabeat kits!
Rounik Sethi
@ Gary... Thanks & Ha! I know what you mean. It kinda addictive creating ambient soundscapes in Ultrabeat's sequencer. :)
Apollo Flow
I wish there was a way to load samples in bulk, instead of having to drag or load one by one. But great tutorial!
Great tutorial however when I created the drum pack and saved it, then later reopened it, it wanted to search for the sounds again. Has anyone had this issue?

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