Leonard Charles Records

The home of Jeremy Toy aka Leonard Charles' music and audio experiments.

LC1200 Sampler for Ableton Live

HERE is my Ableton Live version of my favorite sampler, the undisputed king of sampling, the E-mu SP 1200. What makes this thing so great? It is raw, gnarly, perfectly made, aggressive yet smooth. I have been wanting an SP 1200 all my sampling life, I have had an SP 12, MPC 60, all the boss series, s950, MPC3000, MPC2000 and am waiting for the SP to one day venture forth to my studio [update… I now own my very own SP1200]. While I wait [update: no more waiting] I thought it was worth my time creating an Ableton version of the SP. There are other versions of SP 1200 emulation on the internet but I really do think this one comes very close. I have spent a large portion of my working week sound designing a couple of Ableton Racks that are fun to use and inspiring. You can download the Ableton Live Pack (for Live 9)  HERE .  

If you are already an Ableton boffin install these 2 Ableton .adg files and get to it: LC1200 .adg

Thanks to Leon D for the loan of his SP 1200 -

There are 4 steps to make this system work, there was no way of making this successful in one process. I have left some audio in the session file to help give the user some clues as to how this is supposed to be used.

1: Load the audio you want to manipulate into the [Process Sample] track.  Try pitching the sample up 5 semitones if you really want to get busy. I recommend using minimum 16 bit 44.1khz file rates but it really doesn't matter what you process.

2: Record this in to [Re-record Sample] track.

3: Drag this processed sample to the drum rack in [LC12000 Drum Rack]. 

4: Re-pitch, cut up, mangle your sample! Remember if you are re-pitching and you really want to make it sound close to an SP make sure you turn warp off on all the samples. 


Controls I have assigned to Macros are:

Process Sample

1Left, Stereo or Right of audio file.

2: Input gain of audio file going into the sampler. Make sure the file you are processing is coming in nice in hot but not charcoal.

LC1200 Drum Rack

1: Output options modeled on the SP 1200's outputs. There are different filter amounts applied to each output stage. My layout may seem confusing but output 7/8 is the first option because they are the un-effected outputs of the SP 1200. Outputs 1/2 are the most heavily effected and also has an adjustable envelope amount. I couldn't completely emulate the 1/2 filter as Ableton doesn't have a filter Audio Effect where you can adjust the filter attack without adjusting the dynamic envelope. 

2: Compression blend - I have applied a subtle compressor to the output of this Rack. Apparently the master out of the SP 1200 has some magical compression so I applied some of my own magic to the Rack. 

3: EQ on and off. I had to put a final EQ stage on my Drum Rack as it didn't sound right without it. I feel like this EQ is pretty darn close to an SP 1200 or at least the unit I used for my analysis.