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Unlock Your Music Potential: Setting Up MIDI Controllers for Live Looping in Logic Pro
Learn to harness the power of live looping in Logic Pro with our step-by-step guide on setting up MIDI controllers, customizing commands, and controlling Remix FX. Aimed at enhancing your music production skills, this comprehensive guide empowers you to create unique soundscapes.


Welcome! If you're keen to dive into the world of live looping in Logic Pro, it's crucial to properly set up your MIDI controllers. The versatility that MIDI controllers bring to live looping can greatly enhance your music production capabilities, giving you the freedom and flexibility to create unique soundscapes.

In this comprehensive guide, we'll walk you through the process of setting up your MIDI controllers for live looping in Logic Pro, from getting started to performance. We'll teach you how to control Remix FX, navigate your session, map commands to your MIDI controller, decide on custom controller assignments, and much more so you can make the most of your music.

Getting Started

Let's start by creating a new project with the live loops template. In Logic Pro, select 'File', then 'New from template'. Choose 'Live Loops' and you're good to go! Having a template to start with simplifies the process right out of the gate.

Now, connect your MIDI controller with a fader to your computer. After connecting, open the Logic Pro project and understand the use of smart controls for a performance. Smart controls are crucial in live looping as they automate certain parameters like effects and instruments, giving you, the artist, more room for creativity.

Controlling Remix FX

For a more dynamic and engaging performance, you'll want to control remix FX on the stereo output. To create a controller assignment for this, open the mix window and select the stereo output. Hit 'command L' to bring up the control assignments. From there, choose the parameter you want to control, and move the fader on your MIDI controller to create the assignment.

Once you've set this up, you can easily adjust the cutoff and resonance settings to add depth and character to your sound, helping you stand out in your musical explorations. Tailoring these settings allows you to express your unique musical taste and style more distinctly in your live looping performances.

Navigating Your Session

Navigating through your Logic Pro session is a skill in itself. Use the ARROW keys to select cells and change tracks. This basic navigation is essential for smooth transitions and keeping the flow during your performance.

To record, simply use the 'option R' command to start and end recording. Triggering cells is also easy with the RETURN key. And if you ever need to delete cells, just use the DELETE key. Learning these commands will speed up your session navigation and boost your performance efficiency.

Mapping Commands to MIDI Controller

Customize your experience by assigning new functions to your MIDI controller. Start by opening the key commands window (press the 'option K' command). You'll see a comprehensive list of commands available to map to your controller. Choose from the list and assign them as you wish to work best with your workflow.

Proper mapping not only enhances precision but also can immensely increase your capability and range within Logic Pro's live looping feature. So, dedicate time to this process, test various key mappings, and explore what works best for you.

Custom Controller Assignments

For greater flexibility and control during your performance, create custom controller assignments. Opening the controller assignments window (press 'command L'), you'll find Logic Pro's vast array of controllable parameters.

Here you can also select the expert view for more detailed controls. That's where the learn mode comes in - it 'learns' what you do in Logic Pro and ascribes it to a control on your MIDI controller. By setting up controls for triggering cells, you can execute intricate sequences more easily and intuitively during your live looping routines.

Performance and Further Learning

Now that you've set up your MIDI controllers, it's time to utilize your custom controller assignments for live looping in Logic Pro. Remember, the key to a great performance is practice. Familiarize yourself with the layout, control scheme, and shortcuts you've set up for your MIDI controller.

We highly recommend watching tutorial videos for visual guidance and additional tips. These are great supplementary tools to help you overcome any stumbling blocks in this initial phase of MIDI setup for live looping. Expand your knowledge and let your creativity run free!


We've covered a lot of ground in this guide, from setting up your MIDI controller for live looping in Logic Pro to customizing controller assignments, mapping commands, and navigating sessions. Remember that these setups are mere starting points; feel free to explore and experiment further to suit your preferences and needs.

Last but not least, enjoy the process. Live looping can be a joyful journey of musical exploration with MIDI controllers, and hopefully, this guide has empowered you to make the most of it. It's your creativity and expression that gives life to your sound - so go ahead, get started, and make your mark in the world of live looping!

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Rylan Talerico
October 24, 2023
Before founding Crate, Rylan Talerico was signed to Warner Records as a recording artist, producer, and songwriter. These days, Rylan enjoys spending time with his family and working on Crate building tools to empower musicians to be more creative and connected.
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