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Stuart Charles here, HomeStudioBasics.com helping YOU make sound decisions, so…
FL Studio is a powerful digital audio workstation (DAW) that empowers music producers and enthusiasts to create music with limitless creativity.
One essential feature that sets FL Studio apart is its automation capabilities, which allow you to bring your music to life by dynamically controlling various parameters of your effects, mix, and other elements of your project.
To achieve this level of control, FL Studio offers a tool known as “Automation Clips.”
Automation Clips are a fundamental component of the FL Studio workflow, enabling you to automate changes in a wide range of parameters over time.
This can include altering the volume, panning, filters, and virtually any other parameter you can find in your project.
In fact, this automation technique can be applied to pretty much anything inside FL Studio.
By creating and editing Automation Clips, you can make your music evolve, breathe, and truly tell a story.
In this tutorial, we will explore 3 ways to Automate Pitch inside FL Studio.
We will delve into the process of creating, editing, and applying automation to different elements of your project, ultimately giving you the tools to add depth and character to your music compositions.
Whether you’re a beginner looking to get started or an experienced producer seeking to refine your automation techniques, this guide will provide valuable insights into harnessing the full creative potential of FL Studio.
So, let’s dive in.
Open up an FL project. For this method, we’ll be using Slicex.
We’ll cover automating pitch with the FL Slicer in a bit.
To bring up your channel rack, press F6.
From here, click the sample to bring up Slicex.
Head on up to the top left corner and look for the Pitch Fader.
Right-click > Create Automation clip, and you should see it appear in the Playlist.
It will also appear under the Automation Folder inside of your channel rack.
All automation clips start with a straight line and have a value that matches up with the value of whatever you’re automating.
In this case, the Pitch Slider from before.
Double-click the top of the Automation clip (where it’s colored) to open up the Automation Editor.
To create a point, right-click on the line. You can create as many points as you want and drag them wherever you want, but for now, we’ll just make one.
Now you can start thinking about how you want the pitch change to come in, and I’m not talking about baseball.
Move it up to pitch up, and down to pitch down. Fairly straightforward.
For this example, we’ll pitch down:
To smooth out the curve, hover over the point to the left of the one you made (orange dot in the middle) and notice the up and down arrows.
Move the point up or down until you’re satisfied.
To return to the original starting point, hold Alt (Option For Mac) while clicking and dragging down the point. It will snap back into place.
Holding Alt also moves it around fluidly.
Holding Control only moves it up and down.
Holding Shift moves it side to side.
Right-click again to scroll through the different types of points and experiment with them.
For the purposes of this tutorial, we’ll just stick to a standard curve.
For this particular beat, I wanted it to gradually pitch down and then come back up right away.
To do this, we’ll simply click the open circle on the right of the point we made and drag it up as well.
You can also move the bottom point around (holding shift) wherever you want to get a fine-tuned adjustment.
From here we can adjust the shape to our heart’s content.
For instance, you can gradually have the pitch shift come in and then quickly come up, or vice versa. You can also move the bottom point down further to create a more dramatic effect.
Just play around with it until you’re satisfied.
For this beat, I wanted a quick automation, so we’ll bring in the rightmost point by holding Shift and dragging it left.
This creates a gradual pitch down and then a rapid return to normal.
Again, you can tweak this as much as you want. Just use your ears, listen to how it sounds, and go from there.
All that’s left to do now is bring the edge in and we’re done.
To do this, close out of the Zoomed-in view and adjust the actual clip in the Playlist.
From here, hover over the purple portion near the edge until you see the double arrows. Now adjust in.
You can also make changes to the clip in this zoomed-out view. Just hover over the main portion of the automation and you’ll see the points:
Now just listen to how it sounds. If you don’t like it, go in and adjust, re-adjust, etc. until you’re satisfied. This is part of the fun!
Once you’re content with how it sounds, hover over the top of the box until you see the Anchor (4 arrows) and move it wherever you want in your song.
To delete an automation clip, head up to the top left and hit the Automation Clip Picker tab. Now just right-click and delete the one you don’t want.
To clone one, simply left-click inside the Playlist.
Do be forewarned: any changes you make to a clone will change all of them, so if you want to make a new automation clip, you’ll simply right-click the pitch fader in Slicex and repeat the process again.
And that’s how you automate pitch inside FL Studio!
This same principle applies to pretty much anything inside FL Studio, so don’t be shy.
This method is similar to using Slicex. The only real difference is the interface.
To begin, make sure you have some patterns laid out in the Playlist.
To do that, hit F5 to bring up the Playlist, click the “Picker: Patterns” tab (Piano icon) click a few, and drag them in.
Now hit F6 to bring up your channel rack and click the sample you dragged in from Edison.
As mentioned with the Slicex method, this guide assumes you already chopped up your sample with Edison and dragged it into the FL Slicer. If not, refer here for how to do so!
Once you click the sample, the FL Slicer Dialog Box will pop up.
Now look for the pitch knob/dial in the top right corner.
If it’s not there, click the gear icon in the upper left corner to toggle it.
From here, right-click the pitch knob > Create automation clip.
It will show up in the Playlist window and in the automation folder inside your channel rack.
After doing this, the process of creating the pitch curve is exactly the same as the above Slicex method.
To automate this way, simply drag your sample or file into the playlist from the Browser window.
You can also drag songs/finished beats from your PC into the Playlist this way.
Now double-click the colored area to bring up the sample window.
Right-click Pitch > Create Automation Clip.
Now simply follow the steps from the previous example to adjust.
It’s really that simple.
Now that you know how to automate pitch, are you ready for a complete guide on How To Sample In FL Studio?
Well, that’s about it for today my friend! I hope you enjoyed this quick guide on How To Automate Pitch In FL Studio and came away with some valuable insight.
Questions? Comments? Requests? Did I miss the mark on something? Please leave a comment below or contact me! I would be happy to help in any way…
Are you better equipped to automate pitch? I would love to hear from you. Until next time…
All the best and God bless,