Designed for Ableton Live 10 these racks will simplify mixing and production. They are handy tools that are easily reverse-engineerable and tweakable. Not only will you have a set of devices that will make your workflow better, but you will be able to see what each control does from the descriptions we have added. The racks can be further tweaked and saved as presets which you can call back at any time.
Many of these racks are simplified interfaces for the more complex effects, but others are deep, multichain effects banks with many different effects running in parallel.
Please note that you need the most recent version of Ableton to ensure that this will work.
Skapade – Advanced Utility
While the Utility plugin does a lot of good stuff, for a true utility tool, you want more. SKapade’s Advanced Utility has all the features of Utility, plus some other important tools. This rack is essentially the first tool you want to place on a track. Firstly, you have a HPF which cuts out the low- an essential for a clean mix, then it offers tools such as transparent compression, and the basic Utility features as well. It also packs in the Spectrum and Tuner screens so you can track the incoming sounds, and if recording in live instruments, can identify faults from the get-go.
Skapade – Booster
Booster is all about one thing: simplifying loudness. Built on five compressors and a Multiband Dynamics tool, this simplifies the control to eight knobs. Instead of the deep and complicated controls of the multiband compression/expansion, the rack offers three simple controls for Lows, Mids, and Highs. There is also a shelving control to add additional crisp boosts to the top end, so your lead sounds really cut through.
Skapade – Cabinet Sim
If you aren’t a guitarist this one may not sound too appealing but bear with us! Cabinet simulators are what many modern guitarists use to simulate a certain amp and speaker type. Each cabinet speaker has a different quality of sound (depending on the number of speaker cones, their size, and how they are mic’ed up), choosing the right one is essential for guitarists to nail their tone. But what happens for everyone else? Well, it turns out that cabinet simulators are excellent tools for adding character to synths and samples, that wouldn’t be easily replicable with other plugins. Further, this rack takes multiple cabinet simulators and allows you to mix them together to get the perfect blend.
Skapade – Creative Beats
This rack uses 19 different effects over 5 parallel chains to ensure that you can spice up your beats both live and in the studio. If you are worried that your 7-minute song uses the same constant drum loop throughout, then this might be the effect for you. Map the knobs to a MIDI controller, arm automation arming, and hit record. The effects in here will add significant energy to the beats and also double up as a riser/wash-out effect when you are building up to that killer drop. To top it all off, there is a control to ensure the effects are in tune with your kick.
Skapade – Driver
If you want tasteful, nuanced tube drive, all the way up to hardcore tube dirt, then look no further. This plugin is great on ultra subtle setting for warming up basslines, or even a mix bus, while pushing it harder brings out the best of most instruments. We only needed 7 knobs for this one, so I don’t know, assign the 8th one to your thermostat or something.
Skapade – Guitar Cleaner
Have you ever seen those EQ cheat sheets? Well, we looked at them and thought: “what if we followed them all at once for an instrument?” So basically, this rack is the product of some quick maths scribbles and full appreciation that the result could be a complete failure. It certainly was. It didn’t prove to be the key to fixing every guitar track in the world. Turns out though, the failed experiment works great on mid-range synths (and even some guitars after all). Probably the biggest key feature of this is the difference between boosting and cutting: each has different Q settings. Boosting has very broad Qs to ensure it is clean, while cutting has a much narrower Q to ensure there isn’t a broad hole in the sound.
Skapade – Guitar Processor
This rack is great for thickening up your guitar sounds but fear not, if you don’t have a guitar, it works equally well on synths. It has four parallel layers, each with its own unique effect. These will easily thicken up the sound to exactly how you need it. Try it also on backing vocals, and other sounds that don’t require more meticulous effect management.
Skapade – LoFi
This is a filthy, nasty, gritty, unforgiving rack. Think about all the time you spent cleaning up your samples, EQ’ing them, getting them perfect. Throw that time in the bin because once you slap this rack on, things are going to get dirty again. This rack adds all the different types of distortion and nastiness you can think of. But it also works at lower levels too! If you run this over samples, chopped beats, and melodies, you get that distinctive LoFi hip-hop sound.
Skapade – Simplified Compressor
This simplified compressor reduces the controls to just three knobs. Threshold and ratio are controlled on knob 1, attack and decay times on knob 2, and parallel on knob 3. What makes this different from a rack which simply maps out these controls is that the ratio is variable as the threshold changes. It is programmed to offer high ratios at low levels of compression and lower ratios as its value increases and the threshold gets brought further down.
Skapade – Simplified Multiband Dynamics
Ableton’s scariest effect just got simplified. It’s not just understanding several layers of multiband compression and expansion, it’s also the confusing interface that puts people off. That is why we have this rack here for you today to explore the sound of Multiband Dynamics without freaking out. And by the way, the only essential controls are the three pink ones – the rest are just bonuses for extra tweakability!
Skapade – Simplified Reverb
Just like the Multiband Dynamics, Ableton’s Reverb effect is frustratingly complex, especially for quick fixes. While we shouldn’t complain – since it means we can do really advanced reverb if we want – it can be frustrating getting your head around the interface. If you spend too long on an effect, you lose inspiration for the song. That is why we bring you the simplified reverb!
Skapade – Synth Amp
Consider running a synth through a guitar amp…that’s what we’ve made for you here, we’ve even added some funky spatial FX to top it off.
SKapade – Synth Utility
This one is a bit more unique than the Synth Amp. It actually has deeper control over the drive on the individual bands, as well as a “Chonk” control. It’s pretty in-your-face and doesn’t suit all sounds, but works extra nice on a lead sound in the mid-range.
Latest posts by Tom Jarvis (see all)
- Pioneer just released the DDJ-800 and its perfect for the DJ on the move - April 17, 2019
- Stephen Kirkwood – How to master your own tracks - February 28, 2019
- Creating your own unique transition effects with Stephen Kirkwood - February 27, 2019