Cutting Up Breaks In Renoise & Kontakt

Here’s my method for cutting up breaks in Renoise, using Kontakt.

First of all load a nicely trimmed loop into Renoise.
Then put the ‘Beat Sync’ function on the loop to get it matching the BPM of your track and put the loop into your pattern.
You then want to highlight how ever many bars of this loop you want to cut up. Let’s say for example you are making a Drum’n’Bass track of 175bpm at speed 3 and the loop is a 4 bar loop.
So you’ve highlighted the whole 4 bar loop, and in this case that will be 64 lines.

Then right click on the highlighted section and choose 'Render Selection to Sample. This will record the 4 bar loop to a new sample slot and the new sample will obviously be at 175bpm (or whatever the speed of your song is). Make sure that when you render a selection like this you always diables any effects from the channel that you are dealing with and also the Master Channel. You want to record it dry so that you can then apply the effects afterwards.

Ok, so now you have a loop that is in the same speed of your song. Save this in the same directory as the original sample of you like and I usually just add on the BPM to the new version name when saving. For example, the original may have been called Amen.wav and I’ll save the new loop as Amen_175bpm.wav

Now that the new loop is saved, you want to bring up an instance of Kontakt. Onced loaded up, select ‘New Instrument’ to call up a blank instrument. Then clcik ‘Edit’ and then the ‘Mapping Editor’ button.
You then want to locate your new loop and drag it onto C1 on the keyboard.

Now click ‘Loop Editor’ and below the keyboard the loop will appear.
Select ‘Command’ and then ‘Slice Sample’.
This turns Kontakt into a Recycle style device.
Move the ‘Slicer Sens’ to adjust the sensitivity of your beat cuts.
You can click ‘Add’ to put some in or if you select ‘Rem’ you can then hover over the slice markers and remove them with a click.
In the bottom right corner of the sample window you cut zoom in and out, which is great for getting cuts exact.

Ok so when you are happy with your slices you can click ‘Close’ just above the sample window on the right to close the Slice Mode.
Then hit ‘Command’ again and choose ‘Expand Slices to Groups’.
In the pop up window that comes up you want to select C" as your ‘Mapping Base Key’ and personally I don’t touch anything else.
Then click ‘Expand’. A Save feature will come up allowing you to save the midi file, which is great for Cubas etc but currently isn’t much use in Renoise so I usually click Cancel straight away.

You have now cut up your loop and each hit is perfectly in time with your song’s BPM!!

And of course you can then apply all of Kontaks effects etc to each hit or the whole loop. Just pitching down the whole loop a little usually sounds great.

They don’t call me the Breakbeat Scientist for nothing!!!


Ok, but why dont you load original loop directly to kontakt and sync and slice it there?

The reason behind my method is that you don’t have to find the BPM of the loop you are using. If you load the original into Kontakt and cut it up you must know the BPM of the original loop to get the slices in sync.

You get meh?!

Couldn’t you just use acid pro?


‘You get meh?’ roughly translates to ‘you get me?’ or ‘do you know what I mean’?!!! Ha HA

Anyway, this is how I cut up beats and works really well for me. Plus I can do it much quicker than other method I have tried. I was just trying to pass on my method. There is no rule to beat chopping, you could do the above without Kontakt even. By cutting the slices manually in Renoise’s sample editor. But honestly, give my method a go and you’ll see that it works ok.

For slicing rendered beats in renoise I generally find it easiest to just use very basic commands; I lay out multiple instances of the same beat at different offsets from the innitial note on, with all instances muted in the volume column except that innitial one, and simply switch between the offset samples by muting one track and unmuting another. Makes for a very fast process of adding a few extra breaks to something that is otherwise complete.

If that didnt make sense this picture may help explain…

I dont really get you. Why dont you load original sample in to Kontakt, then time sync it with Renoise master tempo, and then slice it to your keyboard note by note??

Do you get me?

Your tip here is good for RNI-users, why drag Kontakt into it all? :rolleyes:

I read your tip and thought “Hey, this could be a nice Kontakt-workaround”, you see.

well i just load my breaks into kontakt and master sync the tempo through renoise. but i play everything live on my mpd16.

The whole point of not just putting it into Kontakt is that you have to work out the BPM of the loop. If you beat sync it first and then render it for Kontakt it will be in the tempo of your song.

It might sound like a long winded technique but is ultra quick to do.

I agree that you could not use Kontakt and just manually chop the rendered break. That would work just as well but Kontakt will slice the loop up for you quickly.

Also, remember, I’m not talking about playing straight breaks or loops. I’m on about cutting them up and re-arranging the hits.

Use this technique or don’t use this technique, I was jsut passing on a method which works very well for me.


I just chop the loop into slices manually, map them into instrument so I can play every slice individually, resequence them the way I like it to sound, process it with equaliser etc whatever it needs and resample as a new loop, which I cut and map into instrument again and save it for next use. Kontakt is not necessary.

phatmatik pro