Sampling In Maschine V2

Sampling in Maschine just got a lot easier with the subtle new features in version 2.0. In this tutorial, Mo Volans takes you through sampling from start to finish using Maschine.  

Maschine V2 has a whole host of cool additions but one of my favorites has to be the new sampling engine. The changes made are pretty subtle, but all in all the whole system feels faster, slicker and most importantly more enjoyable to use.

In this walkthrough I'll sample some audio actually running inside Maschine. I'll then edit the sample, trim it and span it to the pads in a group. Once this is complete, we'll generate a MIDI file and create a new sequence with the samples.

Step 1: Prepping Your Source Material

The first step here is deciding what you want to sample. Maschine is capable of sampling external and internal sources. This means that you can sample anything you hear happening in your Maschine project without ever leaving the box, or if you prefer you can choose to pipe something from the analog domain in using your interface inputs.

(Pic 1) Prepping a loop to sample within a Maschine project.

Prepping a loop to sample within a Maschine project.

Either way, you will need to isolate the part that is playing in Maschine and fine tune the loop. If you are sampling an external signal, you will also need to ensure that the MIDI or audio device is being routed correctly into your interface. When these steps are complete, you are ready to start setting up Maschine's internal sampler.

Step 2: Setting Up The Sampler

Now you'll want to hit the 'sampling' button on your hardware or navigate the small waveform icon to the left of the pattern area in the Maschine software. You should see a handy input meter at this point. 

(Pic 2) Entering the sampling mode will show you modes and a small input meter.

Entering the sampling mode will show you modes and a small input meter.

Depending on whether you are set to internal or external, the meter will display the level of your chosen Maschine part or the audio coming into your interface. The meter is also available on most models of the Maschine hardware. In most cases, it's actually larger and clearer than the software meter! I tend to carry out the sampling process on the hardware for this reason.

(Pic 2b) Setting the internal sampling mode.

Setting the internal sampling mode.

You now need to choose whether your source is stereo or mono. In this case the loop we are sampling is a Maschine part so I have chosen internal stereo. This will ensure that we capture the audio in its original state and it should be an identical copy.

(Pic 2c) The hardware metering is much larger.

The hardware metering is much larger.

Step 3: Sampling Your Loop

You can now start sampling, but before you hit the 'start' button you have a few extra choices to make regarding what you want to capture and how. The option allows you switch between sync and detect modes. 

(Pic 3) The sample is set up and ready to be recorded.

The sample is set up and ready to be recorded.

Detect mode is pretty obvious, Maschine will start sampling when a certain level is reached, the threshold here is determined by you. The sync mode is a little cooler and basically starts sampling on the next bar giving you not only a perfect sample start point but the ability to create a perfect loop.

The second part of the process is choosing your loop length. If for instance you choose 8 bars and the sync mode, you will end up with a perfect 8-bar loop. This is more or less the combo we used and you will see that this will save you a huge amount of time when editing… or not editing!

 (Pic 3b) The sample is recorded.

The sample is recorded.

Step 4: Editing And Chopping

With the sample recorded you can now turn off the original part or mute your external source. The sample is also ready for editing and manipulation and this takes part in the various sample editors. We'll be looking at the edit and slice areas.

(Pic 4) The sample in the editing mode.

The sample in the editing mode.

First up, if you want to perform fine edits such as changes in level, reverses, trimming or truncation this can all be performed in the edit zone along with other processes. This is really a full-blown sample editor right within Maschine.

(Pic 4b) The sample being sliced.

The sample being sliced.

Moving into the 'Slice' window, you will see a very simple set of options that allows you to slice your groove into 4/8/16 and 32 parts. As soon as you select one of these amounts, the slices are created and mapped across the pads accordingly, ready to play. 

(Pic 4c) The edited sample in the hardware ready to be sent to a group.

The edited sample in the hardware ready to be sent to a group.

Step 5: Send The New Version To A Group

Although the system above gives you a great preview of what your groove will look like and how it will play when spanned across the pads, it is only that, a preview. To make the edits permanent you have to apply them.

(Pic 5) The sample is sent to a group and a MIDI file is generated.

The sample is sent to a group and a MIDI file is generated.

When you do this, you can choose 'apply to' and then go ahead and pick an existing or new group. Once you have done this, the new sliced and mapped groove will be carved into your projects groups.

Step 6: Program Your New Groove

With your new groove spread across Maschine's pads, you can now start to play with it. You'll notice that when you created the new group a matching MIDI part was also dropped into the sequencer. Maschine does this by default, but it can be turned off it you prefer.

If you opt to have Maschine create the MIDI part for you, it's worth taking some time to play around with the order of the playback to see if you can create something new out of the original pattern. Here you can hear that I have played something fresh in, giving a pretty standard house loop a whole new angle.

(Pic 6) The new groove is programmed.

The new groove is programmed.

Try this out for yourself with something from your existing sample library or perhaps with a section of one of your own Maschine projects. It really is a lot of fun and you should be pleasantly surprised by the results. 

Learn more about Maschine 2.0 in this video course:

Mo has been a professional in the music industry for around 15 years. He has released material with the world's leading record labels and also produces music for TV and Film. Mo is also a prolific writer and is a regular contributor to magazines such as Music Tech, Future Music and EQ magazine. There isn't a piece of music software tha... Read More


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