How to route audio between applications

  • Live Versions: All
  • Operating System: All

There are three common methods for routing audio between Live and other software on your computer. Routing audio can be used for things like, for example, sampling audio from video into Live or sending SMPTE sync out of Live.

Virtual audio routing

Various virtual audio-routing protocols exist for Windows and Mac. Here are some popular options:

Follow the instructions for installation. Once installed, these show up as audio drivers in Live's preferences (as well as the preferences of other audio-enabled applications).

Here's an example of how to route audio from a Youtube video into Live to record it using iShowU on Mac:

  1. Install iShowU Audio Capture.
  2. Open your Mac's System Preferences → Sound.
  3. Set the Output device to iShowU Audio Capture:Screenshot_2020-01-17_at_15.36.26.png
  4. Launch Live, then open Preferences → Audio.
  5. Select iShowU Audio Capture as the input device:Screenshot_2020-01-17_at_15.33.18.png
  6. Rename the input as required.
  7. Arm an audio track for recording, then set the monitor to receive the correct input:Screenshot_2020-01-17_at_15.37.36.png
  8. Start recording into a blank clip slot, and press play on the Youtube video.

Analog Loopback

If you have a spare output on your audio interface, connect a cable (or set of cables) from there to an input on the same interface. Configure the respective preferences so that one program is outputting via the analog out, and the other is set to receive the analog input.

Digital Loopback

This option has the advantage of potentially lower latency than other two other options above. If you have SPDIF input and output ports, connect a cable between them for stereo loopback. If you have ADAT you can do the same for 8 channels of loopback. Configure the respective preferences so that one program is outputting via the digital out, and the other is set to receive the digital input.

Tip: Certain audio interfaces have loopback capabilities built in, so you don't even need to use physical cables. Check the manual of your interface to see if it support this.