live looping with Molar?

  • Hey, would anyone be willing to put together a step-by-step guide on how do do live sampling/looping with the current version of Molar? i'm totally lost.
    thanks in advance!

  • courtesy of t1mp:

  • yeah, i saw that when he posted it back in Feb.
    it would be exactly what i was looking for...
    if it covered live input looping/sampling.

  • aha. i was afraid it might not cover everything you need. i haven't actually watched the whole thing, cause i'm not a molar user (pretty much stuck in Max/MSP and ChucK right now)...

    so basically i'm of no help.

  • Here's how I do it in live (from memory) using a zendrum zap as my trigger device:

    1. Molar is on track 1. I have the top 8 rows set to ltg mode, with warp set to off. I have 4 mute groups of 2 rows each (the audio from each mute group goes out to separate tracks in live to allow individual effects to be applied). The last pad in each row is set to flat zero for the shape. This allows me to hit the last pad in each row to stop the loop.

    2. I have various instruments set up on multiple tracks, all sending their audio to the master track. FWIW, I have 2 tracks with battery kits and 2 tracks with simpler chains, each triggered by a different midi channel. These tracks are all set to monitor in. I change through the different kits with empty midi clips that select different steps along the chain selectors for each track. Each new scene launch changes kits on all 4 instrument tracks (and the impulse track mentioned later).

    3. I have four tracks of blank 4 bar midi clips that I use to record incoming midi notes (on the 4 midi channels corresponding to the 4 instrument tracks, launching the next scene launches a new set of four blank midi clips). All 4 tracks are record enabled and looping at all times, turning overdub on and off allows me to record what I'm playing into the clip. These tracks are set to monitor off. This is where the live looping actually begins...

    4. Then...I record the audio from the instrument tracks (being triggered by the just-recorded looping midi clips) into various ltg rows in molar. To make this happen, I have four more audio tracks with audio in coming from the instrument tracks, and audio to the track that molar is on (track 1 in my case). To record a loop to row 1, I press WAV + 2nd pad from the right on row 1. This records the next bar of incoming audio (from the instrument track or tracks). Note: I could record live playing into molar instead of going through all this midi clip looping nonsense, and sometimes I do. But this method allows me to record nicely quantized and looping clips into molar.

    5. Then I mute the instrument track at the same time I press the first pad in row 1 to seamlessly "transfer" the loop to molar. Then I slice, gate, meta record, and pitch shift away!

    Sorry if this is long and confusing (and possibly lacking a few key bits of info..). It's really much easier than it sounds. In short, you could do this with any audio source routed into molar (preferably tempo-synced to the host). This setup just allows me to start with nothing pre-recorded or pre-sequenced, and improv away with live looping and slicing! Oh, and I have the bottom 8 rows (7 not counting the bottom control row) set to snd mode triggering a chain of impulse kits step-style. Fun.

  • So I just read this again and realized how much extraneous info I was spewing when I wrote it last night. What can I say, it was late and I'd had a few. Sorry.

    In short, route audio to molar. Record.

  • @hynosapien
    hey I really appreciate you detailing how you use Molar in your setup. It's always interesting to see how people are using this in various ways. I'm still discovering new ways to use it every day.

    Here is a more basic way of utilizing live looping with Molar and Live:
    1) Insert a midi track and drag/drop the Molar VST into it. Change a few of the rows to either LTG or LP1 modes in the Molar GUI.

    2) Insert a return track and set the "Audio TO" to the track you created in setp 1. By default this is Molar 128 (or Molar 256, or Molar 40h depending on which VST you are using). So in in essence any audio you send to this return track will be sent to Molar for sampling. This makes things nice and flexible as you can now set up any number of audio tracks to send audio to Molar just by turning up the sends.

    3) So lets do it.. insert an audio track and either set it up to playback audio clips or use it as a live audio input (monitor In) for external instruments or mics or whatever. Turn up the Send level all the way that corresponds to the Molar return track you created in step 2.

    4) Now lets sample things.... start the sequencer and get some audio going of whatever you want to sample. Press and hold the WAV function button on the Monome and then press the 2nd button from the right on the row you wish to capture audio to. Release both and playback the loop by pressing the first button in the row and you should hear playback of your recorded loop. You can keep the loop playing back if you like while sampling a new loop in the same row which will overwrite your previous loop or create new loops on subsequent rows. You can mute the original audio source track too to just hear the recorded loops.

    I've been using this method recently in my Ableton DJ setup to remix tracks on the fly which is loads of fun. Things stay very much in sync and tight with just a minimal amount of latency with the original audio source.


  • hey thanks. i've been messing around with this for the past couple of days and i think i have the hang of it.
    the only thing that is throwing me off is that sometimes after i stop a clip, (the light no longer moving across the monome) but the sound keeps playing back. the only way i can stop it is by turning off the plugin and then turning it back on.
    has anyone else had this happen?

  • I'm currently trying to set up live looping using Molar, my 40h and Live 8, and failing badly.
    I've looked around the old posts but couldn't find any answers.
    I don't think I have a problem routing the audio into molar but its more the lack of buttons on my 40h. From the documents it seems I need 16 buttons to trigger recording (right most pad)
    Or are the 40h mappings different to accommodate for this.
    Any help or pointers appreciated.

  • If your molar.cfg is still default, you should be able to route audio to Molar, press the furthest right function pad and the second pad from the right on any other row to record the next bar of audio.

    If you look in the Molar.cfg file you will see in the ASSIGN FUNC section that there is a column for both 256-default and 40h-default if you need to edit your function pads.

  • thanks for the fast response.

    I think I was trying this "press the furthest right function pad and the second pad from the right on any other row to record the next bar of audio" but gave up when I referred to the molar to go documentation page 3 as I thought that I needed to press pad 15 to launch record (and I obviously only have 8 pads on my 40h)

    I'll have another go when I get home tonight.

  • hi

    is it true, that i can´t use the input recording with Logic?
    I tried to do this, with a bus and sidechaining or i putted
    molar in an effectslot on a bus and tried to send audio to this bus.
    It doesn´t work ;(
    I dont want to use Live, because i want to use molar with logic, but
    midi from molar doesnt work to.... Is there any way/trick on this?

  • Hi all.

    You may have answered this already but would Molar work for sampling and looping live vocals as well as MIDI instruments? I'm hoping to be able to pull off live sample recording, looping and layering of multiple tracks using Ableton Live 8 and a monome 64 grayscale.

  • @TomSkander, yess this will work!
    from this thread:

    'As far as I am aware Live is actually the only host that allows direct routing of audio to VSTI plugins.

    Recording audio in Molar is actually very simple.Just set the row mode in Molar to LP1 or LTG and then route the "Audio To" in Live as Molar 1 and then press on any row:
    WAV+ Rightmost pad captures the current pass
    WAV+2'nd pad from right captures the next pass
    WAV+3'rd pad from right toggles live input looped recording
    WAV+4'th pad from right saves wav to disk

    You could also send your source audio to a return channel first and then send the output of the return channel into Molar 1.'

    i hope this will work for you!
    (btw the 'wav-pad' is the rightmost pad on the bottom row on your gs64)

  • @Joris Timoth

  • I'm a new user of molar and I'm having a few problems with the live looping thing with ableton and my 64. I've followed crixmadine's instructions and everything seems to be working fine except:

    1) As soon as i record a loop it starts playing
    2) I can't really find a way to stop the loop playback unless I turn down the volume
    3) how can i increase the length of the recorded loop? (it always records just one bar loops)

    sorry for my noobness

  • cheers. um. I guess you have your row set to LTG? When the sequence is running on your row, what's it look like? Does the led go run across the grid like mlr? Or is it that along with a permanently lit button as well?

    Also, how are you routing the audio to be captured? is it coming from a return track, or directly from another track?

  • @baubie:
    The row is set to LTG and I'm using a return track, as suggested by crixmadine.
    The thing is that each row is blinking only for "half" the duration of the sample which limits me, since i can trigger mlk-style only slices from the first half of the loop (since the other half doesn't have corresponding blinking buttons on the monome)

    I think it has to do with SEQ LEN parameter which is by default set to 16. I tried changing it to 8 but this further shortened the duration of the loop.

    Playing around with the "Warp" parameter of molar seems to be the way to go but it's a little bit incoherent at this point...

    Any piece of advice?

  • hmm...I've never had to mess with the warp or seq length cause I don't import samples, unless its stuff i audio captured.

    are you loading the correct molar vst for your monome size? sounds like you're running the 128 version on a 64?

    I remember this happening to me but I can't remember what did to fix it. I think I had something wrong configured within pages. are you using molar only? are are you also using an app switcher like pages or hub or quadrants?

  • oh..and to stop the LTG rows you need to press and hold the second to last button in the row, then press the last button in the row. its a quick motion. Which explains why you can't stop it, since u don't have access to the last two buttons. :-)

  • I'm using Molar_40h.dll and Molar40h.cfg files in my VST folder... so it's not an issue of using the wrong files :/
    and just molar... not any app switcher with molar