Using Instrument Racks to switch presets or devices

  • Live Versions: All
  • Operating System: All

In order to switch quickly and efficiently between different presets or devices, especially in a live performance, we recommended that you use Instrument Racks. The advantage of using racks is that each chain can load a different instance of a device (or different devices entirely) and these chains can be selected instantly in a variety of ways. This eliminates any potential delays when using program change messages to switch presets. Using mapping, you can also map device on/off buttons if required in order to save CPU.

1. Load an instrument rack and show the chain list.


2. Drop several different presets or devices as required onto separate chains.


3. Open the chain select editor, then separate the chains into different zones, so that each device/preset has their own zone. For ease of use, start at zone 1, then arrange them sequentially.


4. Right click on the chain selector, then map it to macro 1 and rename it to Preset Selector.


5. Create a MIDI clip, open the clip envelope box then select Instrument Rack (or the name of the rack if you've renamed it), then Preset Selector and add a breakpoint at 1. When this clip is played, it will select the first device/preset in the chain list.


6. Repeat with individual clips for each chain, using the correct breakpoint each time. You can rename the clips for ease of use. Now when you press play on those clips, they will switch instantly to the required device. These can also be dummy clips with no MIDI notes contained, in case you just want to load a new device/preset and play it live with an attached keyboard controller. Likewise, you could also map the Preset Selector to a knob in order to select different chains.


7. Racks already conserve CPU in inactive chains, but you can also add device on/off automation using macro mapping. Press the Macro Map Mode switch. Then right click on chain 1's device power button and select "Map to Preset Selector".Screen_Shot_2018-09-11_at_10.50.41.png

8. Then in the Mapping Browser (open the Live Browser if this is hidden), change the range to min: 1, max: 1.


9. Repeat steps 7 and 8 for all other devices, but increase the range sequentially. Then exit Macro Map Mode.


10. Now when you select a chain, only the device in that chain will be active and any devices on other chains will be deactivated.