Today’s article takes inspiration from the classic Instant Gratification Midi Fighter mapping. We’re going to show you how you can create your own one button FX build-ups. To get started, all you need is a MIDI controller and an available button to map the FX to.
ONE BUTTON BUILDS
With a single button, create complex FX build ups – as the button is held, the FX knobs build. Once released, the FX turns off and there’s a nice tail (when using Reverb or Delay).
At the same time, the buttons also snap the knobs to predefined parameters when the button is hit, then they will build/breakdown from there. This can be as simple as having a reverb build, or complex builds with multiple FX and knobs moving together.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
By assigning knob mappings to buttons, we can use the auto repeat function in Traktor’s controller manager. “Auto Repeat” simulates multiple button presses when you hold a button down. With “Auto Repeat” an assigned knob increases or decreases as the button is held down. The beauty of this is that it will work with any midi controller.
HOW IS IT MAPPED?
We’ve included a sample mapping for a Reverb build up. It’s actually pretty simple – here’s the list of commands:
Dry/Wet Adjust (FX Unit): There are two assignment here. One is set to increase with auto repeat checked. The other is set to Direct – Direct assignments snap the knob to a preset position.
Effect 1 Selector: Set to Direct, this loads a preset effect (Reverb) when the button is pressed. You can choose any effect you want.
Knob 1, 2, 3: There are 3 assignments here – all are set to direct. This snaps to the knob to a preset position. There is another assignment set to knob 3 which is set to increase and auto repeat is on. This causes the knob to increase/build up as the button is held. The resolution is also set to “Fine” for a gradual increase. It’s important to experiment with the right knob values to start. If they’re too high then the effect can build too quickly or be too intense (especially with a reverb).
Unit On: This mapping turns the FX on and only stays on as long as the button is held down.
EXPERIMENTATION IS KEY
These builds can be as simple or as complex as you want them to be. You can have one effect build or a chain of multiple FX building up or breaking down. It’s important to try out combinations and see what works for you.
One awesome chain I’ve found is using Beatmasher, Transpose Stretch, and Iceverb assigned to a button. As the button is held, the Beatmasher and Transpose Stretch increase to create a pitched build up (make it a breakdown by setting the Transpose Stretch knob to decrease). Trying to control this with three knobs and three buttons wouldn’t be as easy.
Let me know in the comments if you have any awesome effects combos you find using this technique – or if you have any issues making the mapping.
Read more FX techniques articles: