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Importing a Loop

Over the past few years, loop-based music production has become increasingly common in all types of music. There are entire audio applications dedicated to working with audio loops, some built for use on stage and some for the recording studio. Cubase SX 2 is not exclusively a looping program, but it includes many tools for creating, importing, editing, and tempo-matching loops. The following section shows you how to use audio loops when recording, as well as how to match a loop to the tempo of a project or match your project tempo to a particular loop.

Using drum loops

Metronomes and audio clicks are certainly useful, but why record to a click when you can use a drum loop instead? A carefully selected drum loop, from a loop CD or other source, can help you get the feel of a track together right from the start. Setting up a loop across a project and setting the tempo of a project to match that loop involves some audio-editing tasks that are covered here somewhat out of order. Keep in mind that more advanced audio editing, tempo tricks, and file management are covered later in this book.

To import an audio drum loop

  1. Choose File > Import > Audio File.
  2. In the Import Audio dialog box that opens, navigate to the loop you want to import ( Figure 3.8 ); then click Open.

    Figure 3.8 Choosing the loop to import into the project; in this example, a drum loop is selected to be imported.

    The Import Options dialog box opens ( Figure 3.9 ). Here, you can specify whether the audio file should be copied to the same directory as the current project and whether the file should be converted if it doesn't match the sample rate or bit depth of the current project. I recommend copying the file to the working directory.

    Figure 3.9 Normally, you will want to copy the imported loop to the working directory of the current project.

  3. Make your selections in the Import Options dialog box and click OK. The file is imported to an audio track and is added to the Project window ( Figure 3.10 ).

    Figure 3.10 The loop, after it is imported, becomes an event on an audio track in the Project window.

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