You may have been thinking recently about upgrading your favorite music production software, Logic Pro 9, to the latest and greatest version, Logic Pro X. Released back in July 2013, there are still many producers out there that are holding back from making the switch.
In some cases, you may have already made the leap, but are still struggling to come to terms with the entirely new layout and functions that are available to you. Don’t worry; you’re not alone.
The release of Logic Pro X was a great yet somewhat daunting one, but once you take control of the software and everything that it’s got to offer, you can return to making your tracks the only way you know how, all while taking full advantage of the new benefits that the latest version has to offer.
Today, we’re going to talk you through everything you need to know in order to make the jump successfully, helping you to find your footing and become the best producer you can be.
Of course, the greatest change that comes with Logic Pro X is the completely revamped interface. Most notably, the Library has been changed quite considerably. The most obvious change is the fact that the library has moved from the right to the left-hand side, but this is something you’ll overcome just by getting used to it.
While this may seem like a dramatic change, the user’s best interests are at heart. This is because you can use the library to select your sounds and samples, before effortlessly moving them over to the next box into the Inspector panel, without even having to move your eye a millimeter.
While we’re on the subject of the Library, you may also notice the small new instrument icon above the search bar. However, if this is putting you off, simply pull up the bar from the bottom of the search field to hide it. If you want it back, simply pull it down again.
The Transport Feature
While this is technically part of the interface, this is an iconic change to have occurred, so it deserves its own section. Whereas the Transport feature has always been located at the bottom of the window, this has always caused problems, especially with users who are using the Mac dock.
However, all navigational functions can now be found at the top of the window, along with all the other features which should make it much easier to navigate and find all the settings that you’re looking for.
Also, be aware that where your Tracks were kept, it was originally titled the Arrange area, but it’s now aptly called the Track area.
When you plan on using this Control Bar, there are two main things you’re going to want to remember;
Firstly, the toolbar button, which can be found to the right of the Inspector button, can be used to both open and close the view of the tools beneath it. This is a great way to give yourself more space for other windows and the size can be customized if you plan on using a lot of tools.
Quick Help Button
The second feature you’re going to want to remember is the Quick Help Button. This is ideally for users making the jump from 9 to X. Once you’ve enabled the button, you can hover it over any tool or feature you like, and you’ll see a description pop up detailing what it is and what it does. You can also hold the function key and click for the same effect.
Making Tracks with Logic Pro X
Of course, while using the software is important, one of the biggest things you’ll want to come to grips with is actually making your tracks. Let’s dive right in.
Instrument Channel Strip
Perhaps the biggest change that has been made here is the input field for your software instruments. This can now be found at the top of the channel strip, not above the output field. However, using this feature has also changed.
If you’re choosing a unique Logic, or a third-party, software instrument, you’ll need to click rightwards of the instrument name. If you hover over the instrument, you’ll see up and down arrows that appear. If you want to change the patch you’re using, you’ll need to click inside of your library, not the channel strip itself.
Enabling a Track
When you want to enable a track, you’ll find a new button for this in the track header. You’ll need to make sure that the button is blue which means that it’s enabled.
No More CAPS
Instead of using CAPS lock for the musical typing feature, you now need to use the keyboard shortcut Command + K. Likewise, pressing ‘R’ will still start recording and the Tab button will still sustain your notes.
If you’re looking for a way to manage Logic X Pro form your keyboard, or you’re used to your Logic Pro 9 functions, here’s a cheat sheet for you to remember.
Holding Option and your pointer will allow you to zoom in and out effortlessly.
The default key zoom commands are Command + left and right (for zooming horizontally) and Command + up and down (for vertical zooming).
Control + M must now be used to mute tracks, sections, folders, and notes in the piano roll.
If you want to change any of your key functions, perhaps back to what they were in Logic Pro 9, you can by navigating Menu > Key Commands > Edit, and then finding the key command you want to change and making the necessary adjustments.
As you can see, although there have many changes that have been made in the latest Logic Pro X release, these are all little things that you’ll get used to in time. By updating your software, you’ll still be able to enjoy the benefits of a fully-powered DAW platform, plus all the amazing advantages that this release provides!