Transferring live_loops from Sonic Pi to Ableton for mixing, mastering and releasing songs

Hey everyone, hope you’ve been well!

I’m working on releasing music, I primarily use Sonic Pi to produce and perform music with my vocals running through it, and now I’m in the process of transferring these songs to Ableton so I can arrange, mix and master each track. In the past I have recorded the whole song in Sonic Pi and then have done a quick overall mix and master, but this time I would like some more fine tuning abilities which requires recording each live_loop/live_audio separately. I would love any advice on ways people have done this?

Essentially I need to record each live loop separately and ideally at the same time, at a high quality and then transfer this into Ableton for fine tuning.

A few ideas I have or have found on in_thread:

  • Using the record button with one loop at a time, setting the global sample rate to a higher quality then copy pasting each file into an Ableton audio track - the draw back of this is ideally its all at once so timing of track changes make sense together.

  • The use of buffers potentially? Is it possible to use buffers for up to 5 minute recordings? I am not yet sure where they are saved either…

  • Sending audio from each live loop to a separate audio channel in Ableton using something like blackhole and recording in Ableton instead? Is there a way I could send vocals from Ableton into Sonic Pi and then back into Ableton to record? (I love the in-built effects Sonic Pi has for vocals)

Any other ideas, tips or pointers to other posts are much appreciated!

Fetle :smiley:


Hi! Everything you’ve said sounds right to me. Recording each loop individually would work, but it sounds time-consuming and hard to re-sync them. Buffers are… weird. They seem like a cool feature, but I’ve not had much success when I’ve tried to use them. Probably too ephemeral for this use.

So I’d go with the third option. I don’t actually use Ableton or Blackhole, but I use Pipewire on Linux to route audio between Sonic Pi and Ardour, and I assume the process is similar. It works well! The latency on SP can be a little high for things with sharp attacks like keyboards and percussion, but for vocals it’s probably okay.

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I didn’t know Ardour works with Pipewire now, will try it later.
Many DAWs support per-channel latency compensation for send FX.

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Thanks so much! This is very helpful :smiley:

Yes exactly - the recording of each loop technically is fine but would take sooo long!

I’ll get onto blackhole or research the best tool to route audio for Mac :slight_smile:

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Good point! My (feeble) understanding of that compensation is that it will keep tracks in sync with each other, but it can’t eliminate the latency from Sonic Pi’s JACK buffer*. If I were doing what halloworld describes (using Sonic Pi for live processing of vocals, then routing its output to Ardour/Ableton), I would probably capture the audio in SP rather than trying to do a round trip and doubling the latency.

* Oops, that’s not quite what I meant. I should have said that it can’t “advance” live incoming audio to compensate for latency, the way it can with prerecorded tracks.

More precisely, it’s not that Ardour supports Pipewire specifically; rather that Pipewire emulates JACK well enough to be usable most of the time. It’s not 100% stable, though, especially if you try to cut it close on the latency, as would probably be desirable for a live performance. So currently when I play live, using Ardour to route synths and effects, I still use the ALSA backend.

Good luck to both of you!