Using SoftStep as a drum pad in Ableton Live

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Using SoftStep as a drum pad in Ableton Live

Postby kris » Wed Jun 22, 2011 3:56 am

Hello All,

I'm new to both Ableton and SoftStep, so excuse me if
this is basic stuff..

But I was hoping somebody could just walk me through
how to set up the SoftStep and Ableton (Suite 8) so I could hit a
SS pad and it would trigger an assigned drum hit off
an Ableton kit?

So I imagine I'd need to know:
1. What preset on the SS application that would be
2. Any needed tweaks to that SS preset
3. What elements of the Ableton drum kit I'd need to link the SS midi signal to

Thanks a 1,000,000.
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Joined: Mon Jun 20, 2011 1:28 pm
Location: Seattle, WA

Re: Using SoftStep as a drum pad in Ableton Live

Postby mixerguy » Fri Jun 24, 2011 11:32 am

Hi Kris-

I am pretty new at SS but as a drummer, I had to know how to do this too! I hope my method illustrated below is a good way to do it. I'm new around here. ;-) It worked for me!

I made a couple of Ableton Live livesets you can try out. No programming on SS needed, just choose the NOTE scene in Standalone mode.


In LIVE, use SSCOM1 in Prefs> MIDI for SS>Ableton communication

Drag any LIVE drumkit to a new MIDI Track.

In the 1st liveset,I added a MIDI pitch effect (-24) before the drumkit which transposes the MIDI notes the drum kit is looking for to keys on SS

I used the stock NOTE scene in my SoftStep in Standalone mode

Boom! Kick drum with my feet! Awesome.

If you turn on the "hot swap" button on the chosen kit, you can easily swap out kits. You can also drag samples to quickly replace existing drum sounds.

How about something a bit trickier, but still using stock standalone scenes?

In the 2nd liveset I am attaching, I have multiple kits in multiple MIDI tracks each with the same midi pitch plugin as the first example. I also assigned MIDI control to the mutes for each kit to keys used on the SS in TOGL mode. Hit the Nav keys to pull up the TOGL scene and keys 1,2 and 3 will mute/unmute kits for layering and auditioning of drum sounds. Switch back to NOTE mode to play the sounds. I assigned MIDI control to the mutes by going into MIDI mapping mode in LIVE, selecting the mute button of choice, and then selecting a footpad in TOGL mode.

Hope this helps.

Christian Heilman
Ableton LIve 8.2.2 liveset showing SoftStep drumpad with Standalone NOTE scene plus TOGL mode allows mute/unmute of multiple kits.
(475.26 KiB) Downloaded 178 times
Ableton LIve 8.2.2 liveset showing SoftStep drumpad with Standalone NOTE scene
(120.25 KiB) Downloaded 172 times
Christian Heilman
KMI Sr. Product Specialist - Pacific NW

KMI QuNexus, KMI QuNeo, KMI SS2 w MIDI Exp, KMI 12 Step, Live 8, PT 9, Studio One, Axiom 61, lotsa plugs, Line 6 Echo Pro, Macbook Pro, Presonus mixer
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Posts: 157
Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2011 6:23 pm
Location: Sydney, Australia

Re: Using SoftStep as a drum pad in Ableton Live

Postby Macciza » Sat Jun 25, 2011 12:33 am

I took a slightly different approach and built a scene up from scratch.
My pads send out the notes I want instead of the default layout.
My setup. Assign relevant note numbers to keys. Midi channel 10

6 = PedalHat 7 = High tom 8 = Crash 9 = Hat 0 = Ride/
1 = Snare 2 = Snare roll 3= Sidestick 4 = LowTom 5= Kick

6 also sends CC#4 with pressure live to control hat closure
Most keys send higher velocity/alt note on fast trigger(-offset) and/or double trigger

Still tweaking it a bit but it works fairly well . . .
Hope that makes sense . . .
Will post more details later

KMI StringPort_1650, SoftStep_VK2 v1.2 & MIDI Expander; Mac_Moore Guitar,
Roland VG 8, 88 & 99, YamahaVL 70m; OSX 10.6.8, iMac i7 2.8G QC; MaxMSP 5.1.8, Ableton Live 8.2.2, M4L, SC3, QC, cSound, etc, etc,

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