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How to Comp Tracks in Logic Pro 8

Difficulty:IntermediateLength:MediumLanguages:

When tracking for your record, you may have to go through loads of takes to get that perfect track. In the old days this meant cutting up a lot of tape and pasting the right takes together — a time consuming and difficult effort. Now, in the world of wonderful digital technology, you can just cut, copy and paste to your heart's desire, without having to worry about super-expensive tape that you could ruin with your next knife-cut. Who wants to become a surgeon when all you have to do is copy and paste?


What is Comping?


Comping is short for composition. It involves recording many takes of one instrument, whether it be a guitar solo or a vocal track, picking the best parts from each take and pasting them together. That way, if you sang the first phrase perfectly on your first take but the last phrase was only good on your seventh, you are able to “comp” them together, making one perfect performance.


In this tutorial I am going to show you how to record multiple takes on top of each other in the same track and then editing the recordings to make one final performance out of them. There are a lot of ways to do this and many programs offer a different method. Here we are using the easy and comfortable method offered with Logic Pro 8.


Step 1 - Start Loop Recording


The comping in Logic is really intuitive as you can just record on top of the previous one without destroying your last take. Logic saves all your takes in the same track and region so that when you think you have recorded sufficient material you double click on the region to see all your different takes lined up.


If you are recording alone in your bedroom jumping from computer to microphone, it is most efficient to make a loop recording, so that Logic automatically plays back the section you want to record. That way you just stand and sing different takes until you think you have enough material. You just drag the locators on the top of the screen so the green bar at the top only covers the part you want to record.

This is also a good way to record if you are dubbing movies. The movie business in Spain and Latin America, for example, has a huge section devoted to dubbing all the characters in Spanish. Using loop recording and comping is very useful way to get that perfect performance out of an overdub actor.

Step 2 - Visualizing the Regions


In this screenshot you can see the verse we are working with. This is the first verse of a track called The Sun by acoustic home studio duo The Bitchin' Roommates. As you can see by the vertical white lines in the region, the verse is made up of four different takes.

Listen to the verse here:


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