Other Equipment

Teach me how to use a looper

1

I see these guys using a looper to create a second guitar in the song and I own a Carbon Copy but I'm struggling to get the timing right.

Is there some simple way or rule of thumb on how to use one while you're playing a song without getting the recorded part off the beat?

I mean I know how to record with it, I know how to do the play back but the playback is always off the beat. Obviously because I am a dork.

I hope this makes sense.

2

If you set it up so that the shift from the recording to the playback occurs on the first beat of the measure, it should be pretty straightforward. Just try to hear an imaginary click track in your head as you are doing the recording part and step on playback on the downbeat of a phrase and the playback should seamlessly fit right in and then you quickly switch to the other guitar part that you intend to play over the recorded part being played back.

There is a learning curve with these things. Don't give up early. It just requires a bit of patience and practice.

3

Im part of The Dork Club as I couldnt get the Looper to play back "on time" either.

Like Bob mentioned its all about timing the Looper to the music,but that split second it takes press the foot switch and send the signal up the path seems to always be a bit off. I took the looper pedal off my pedal board and sat it in front of me by itself and worked the foot switch timing untill I finally figured out exactly when to hit it, and mine was at least 1 beat off,slightly less than a Whole beat, but there was a considerable delay in activation.

Grab a beer ,have a seat and play with it til you get it right.It'll come.

4

If there's a "quantize" function, turn it off - unless you're playing to a drum machine.

Besides its being a spawn of Satan, you and Quantize are of different species (one carbon, one silicon), and may not agree about the natural location of the One.

5

I too am in a looper stupor. Can not get it right, TI-ming.

6

If you have that great a lag between when you step on the button to stop recording and start playback, then you may have the wrong looper. I have never noticed that with my Boss Loop Station. Then again, I may (unintentionally) have less of a critical ear for that.

7

I managed to do it right the first time.... thought it was just reaaalllyyy easy. The next 20 or 30 times taught me better : it was just beginner's luck that first time! As been said, press record on one, press again on one (just at the same time of the bar each time). It seems that people using these on stage have a more complex setup with midi clock that makes things easier...

8

count, practice. You'll get it soon enough, it's not hard.

9

I managed to do it right the first time.... thought it was just reaaalllyyy easy. The next 20 or 30 times taught me better : it was just beginner's luck that first time! As been said, press record on one, press again on one (just at the same time of the bar each time). It seems that people using these on stage have a more complex setup with midi clock that makes things easier...

– Thomas

Thomas, something you wrote piqued my interest. You made it sound as if you have to step on one button to stop the recording and to step on another to start playback. Is that what you are doing?

Most loopers are set up so that you can step on one button that will stop the recording and it will seamlessly start the playback. The manufacturers of these products understand that is how players will want to be able to use a looper, so that is how most are designed. If you are doing a two-step process, you might want to revisit the instruction manual and see if there isn't an easier way to do it.

10

Not two buttons, just a first stomp to start recording, and another on the same to stop recording/start playback.... when I say "on one", it's the "one" of the bar count....

11

Then, it is all about counting. And practice, as stated above.

12

get a looper with midi, and listen to a click track or a drum machine.

13

get a looper with midi, and listen to a click track or a drum machine.

14

Yeah, loopers can be a bit tricky. Like others have said, it takes some practice to get the hang of it. I have a looper on my line 6 pod. Step on the foot switch and release it to start recording, step and release to stop recording. Once you have your first loop track down, start counting along with it. At first, try counting through the loop a couple of times, so you can get familiar with exactly where the loop ends. When you're ready, and soon as you get to the end, step on the foot switch and release on the first down beat of the beginning bar. Now you can overdub the next part, step and release to stop the overdub. Rince and repeat for each additional overdub.

EDIT : I just sat down with my looper. It's all about activating the foot switch very quickly, if you're getting a lag, calculate the lag time into your counting, and hit the switch the amount of the lag, before the first down beat. I actually hit my foot switch one beat before the first down beat.

15

I said I have a Carbon Copy, I do but that's not a looper. Ha ha, sorry to be so dense. My looper is a Ditto Looper.

You start the recording by clicking once, you start the playback by clicking one more time.

Click to record

Click to playback what you just recorded.

I plan to do some serious practicing with mine later in the week.

16

I don't own one but I too have tried to get the timing right on one. It's frustrating, to me.

17

it'll help a lot if you start playing before you start the loop. this makes it a lot easier to get the start/stop in time. i'm lucky in that i spent a LOT of time in the 1980s/90s editing bootleg recordings on cassette and got really good at hitting the switch on the beat.

18

I too am in a looper stupor. Can not get it right, TI-ming.

– NJBob

Looper Stupor! Band name alert!

19

I said I have a Carbon Copy, I do but that's not a looper. Ha ha, sorry to be so dense. My looper is a Ditto Looper.

You start the recording by clicking once, you start the playback by clicking one more time.

Click to record

Click to playback what you just recorded.

I plan to do some serious practicing with mine later in the week.

– Mr_Christopher

I JUST got one of these and printed up a cheat sheet to use with it .

20

it'll help a lot if you start playing before you start the loop. this makes it a lot easier to get the start/stop in time. i'm lucky in that i spent a LOT of time in the 1980s/90s editing bootleg recordings on cassette and got really good at hitting the switch on the beat.

– macphisto

This is great advice. Search GregsGuitars on youtube.com

Gregor Hilden is the player and really has a quality channel that showcases many guitars and cool listening. He sometimes plays to a backing track but the majority of his posts are playing a melodic chord progression and looping it so that he can showcase the "voice" of the guitar thru some tasty soloing.

Here's a cool one with a Tele:

21

I JUST got one of these and printed up a cheat sheet to use with it .

– 949Norm

Me, too! It’s a blast!

22

Whoever said to press record on "one" and hit "stop" on "one" on the measure you don't want in the recording is right. Watch as I hit record at 51 seconds and hit stop at 1:02.


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