2 Minute Ableton Tip #12: Frequency Shifter for Analog Warmth

Create an Analog Feel With Ableton's Frequency Shifter Plugin!

Ableton Live's Frequency Shifter is a pretty handy plugin.   It can be used to dramatically shift the pitch of any incoming audio, move that pitch around with it's LFO, and can be used as a ring modulator.

Ableton Frequency Shifter

This 2 Minute Ableton Live Tip will show you how you can use the frequency shifter to introduce some subtle pitch movement, that emulates the characteristics of a more analog signal path.  I've written about this before, but Digital music can be so perfectly in tune, which is not how acoustic instruments or analog synthesizers actually behave in the real world.  Real instruments are almost never have perfect intonation, and a group of instruments can almost never be perfectly in tune with each other.  Analog tape will also introduce some subtle pitch movement.  Most of this stuff is more or less unnoticeable, but it does affect the overall sound and feel of the music.  Enter Ableton's Frequency Shifter Plugin.  This gem can be used to create those slight imperfections on individual instruments or entire tracks.  Watch the video below as I show you how.

AfroDJMac Live Audio Visual Performance Test

Check out this video below as I run through my song "Substitution" while testing out my visual set up.

I've been drawing my own cartoons and shooting videos that sync up with my Ableton Live set.  It's a lot of fun and adds a whole new dimension to the live performance.  For the cartoons I have been using DoInk for the iPad and for the projection and video effects I have been using Resolume.  Resolume listens to midi from controllers and Ableton Live, which opens up some wild possibilities for audio visual synchronization.  Enjoy!