Ableton has been the go to DAW for Mixtapes amongst DJs popularly around the globe. Having recently celebrated their 20th birthday, Ableton has evolved a software to give the user immaculate control over audio, using which, we are going to learn how to make a mixtape in Ableton.
Making a mixtape in Ableton has various advantages. To start off, we do not have to worry about actually mixing in real time. We also do not need any DJ gear or equipment. A laptop with Ableton and your regular headphones is all you would need. Making a mixtape in Ableton also gives you the advantage of tuning your entire master in a way that you would think would suit your listener better by understanding your genre and the kind of listening devices your mixtape would be largely consumed on, because we must understand that dance music is made for clubs and would require a little extra treatment to make it sound better on a consumers listening device.
Moving ahead, we would be using the arrangement view in Ableton. The arrangement view is like viewing your tracks play out on the CDJ’s display, just that you can now see your entire set’s waveform at once! How cool is that?! Make two audio channels in Ableton’s session view, just like you would have a minimum of two channels to DJ with. You can add an extra channel or however many to suit your needs, in case you’d like to add a jingle or samples to spice up your mix!
Set the tempo of your project to the average BPM of your tracks. Next, arrange your tracks in the order you want them to play but in alternate channels. For example, Track 1 in Channel A and Track 2 in Channel B, just like how you would while DJ’ing with two channels. Next, warp all your tracks and ensure they are beat aligned.
After arranging the tracks, automate the Low, Mid’s and Hi’s just like you would when you are DJ’ing using the EQ-3 plug-in on each channel. You can also add plug-in’s like the EQ-8, Limiter, e.t.c on the master to improve the quality of the mix. Finally, render it with your preferred settings and there you have it! A full mixtape without any errors in a shorter time-span!