OK, so most of us who have used Maschine know it’s a great piece of kit for producing grooves and, since recent updates, is capable of running all your plug-ins from inside its interface. Sometimes though, you just have to turn to your DAW and when you do, it’s good to know what else Maschine can do for you.
In this quick tutorial we’ll look at what Maschine can do once we are inside Logic Pro 9’s production environment and the different ways in which we can harness its raw power...
Step 1 - The Plug-in Route
Most Maschine users will have used the standalone mode: this essentially allows users to run Maschine as a dedicated, standalone application. When you move to your DAW you can essentially take Maschine with you and load it up as either an Audio Unit (AU) or VST plug-in.
Within Logic, Maschine works as a plug-in instrument and is capable of syncing perfectly with your existing project. You can also drag and drop MIDI and audio parts between the two interfaces.
This is a great feature but not exactly an unknown quantity for most Maschine users. So, what else can we do? Well, let’s take a look...
Maschine in Plug-in Mode.
Step 2 - MIDI Controller Mode
When I tell people about Maschine, it’s quite surprising how many users aren’t aware that the hardware can actually be used as a very powerful MIDI controller. In fact, it has several very well implemented templates that are ready to use out of the box.
To access the controller mode in Maschine simply hit Shift and Control when the unit powers up (or at any time during normal use). This will instantly transform Maschine in a MIDI controller and allow you to load templates that come with the unit. Scroll through them by hitting Shift and using the arrows to the left of the main display.
Maschine is ready to be transformed into a MIDI controller.
There are a few choices here with templates for Ableton Live and NI Massive amongst them. But, the one that should really interest Logic users is the Mackie Control template. This is going to be great for most Logic users. Let’s see how it works.
The Mackie Control template.
Step 3 - Virtual Mackie Control
To use Maschine in Mackie control mode you’ll first need to load up the Mackie control template. Then, in Logic, navigate to the control surfaces set up area. You will now have to manually add a Mackie Control and set the inputs and outputs to MIDI 0. This should start communication between Logic and the unit.
Maschine is added as a controller in Logic.
You should now see your current project's parameters appear on Maschine’s displays. The various tabs will give you access to functions such as level, pan, plug-ins and sends. This all works in a very similar way to the actual Mackie control and gives you a really excellent level of control over just mouse and keyboard.
The Mackie Control template is active.
Knowing that you can switch back to controlling Maschine at any time (using Shift and Control on the unit), you really have two devices in one and ultimately, you can get hands-on control for any device in your project.
There's much more to Maschine! Check out these 3 tutorials by Native Instruments' Product Specialist, Matt Cellitti: