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11 Essential Logic Pro X Shortcuts for Producers


Darren Burgos on Oct 06, 2014 in Logic Pro 3 comments

Becoming faster with Logic Pro X's shortcuts and key commands can leave you more time to focus
on the music. Darren Burgos shares 11 of his favorite shortcuts when producing tracks here.

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There are over 1000 key commands for Logic Pro X, both pre-assigned and unassigned. Its completely possible to use strictly
the mouse/trackpad with Logic, but key commands help you to realize your musical vision much faster. In this article Ill be
narrowing the focus on production in Logic, and show 10 of my favorite commands for this. Even if youre more interested in
recording, arranging, mixing, or editing most of these commands will cross over to those areas too, so read on.

#1 - Capture a MIDI Recording After its Played (Shift-R)


When playing a virtual instrument along with your track, you might end up doing something great that you wish youd have
recorded. Many producers get nervous when they put Logic into record mode. In either case, theres no need to worry. Use
key command Shift-R to capture what you play after you play it. While in playback, this great command will grab anything
youve played on your MIDI controller. Simply stop playback as soon as youve played the part, then use this command to
capture what youve done.

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Shift-R to Capture as Recording

#2 - Zoom in and Out (Command-Arrow Keys)


In the workspace/arrange window, being able to clearly visualize an area youre working inor while in the Piano Rollis
absolutely vital while producing in Logic. Use Command-Arrow Keys. You can easily make the visible area in the workspace as
large or small as you want. The left/right arrows display more linearly, and the up/down arrows will increase the vertical
height of each track.

Command-Arrow Keys to Zoom in and out

#3 - Move the Playhead by Musical Bars (, and .)


Often youll want to start playback from a speci!c position. Using the , and . keys you can do this. Holding Shift with these
will move forward or back 8 bars. This is also great for lining up bar position cuts on regions.

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11 Essential Logic Pro X Shortcuts for Producers : Ask.Audio

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Move the Playhead with , and .

#4 - Move Region to the Playhead position (;)


This is often called Pickup Clock and is frequently used for aligning sound e"ects to visuals when scoring. This is also great
for moving regions large distances without having to physically drag them. Simply select the region(s) you want to move, then
press the ; key. The selected regions will snap to the speci!c timeline position.

; to Move Region to the Playhead Position

#5 - Easily Cycle/Loop a Specific Area (Command-U)


So youre working on an area of your track and you need to loop a speci!c bar range for playback. You can use the mouse to
swipe up and across the top ruler, but if theres plenty of regions in the workspace, it can be di#cult to eye the area youre
attempting to loop. First select the regions you intend to loop around, then use Command-U. This command comes in handy
very often while producing, editing, or recording. Using Command-U after selecting regions will set the cycle area to the
exact width of the selected regions. Keep in mind Cycle Mode must be enabled for this (C).

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Set Locators by Regions/Events/Marquee with Command-U

#6 - Move Through Settings/Presets ([ and ])


Do you !nd yourself repeatedly clicking onto Logics settings menus when searching for a sound? What about clicking onto
the next setting in the Library? Use the left and right brackets [ and ] to move between synth sounds, e"ect, EXS24 settings,
and Library patches. Every built-in Logic instrument and e"ect works with these commands, and many third-party
developers are kind enough to include their patches in the standard Logic settings format. On the other hand, many
instruments with built-in preset management will not be available from the standard Logic settings.

Move Through Settings with [ and ]

#7 - Learn a Parameter to Your Keyboard Controller (Command-L)


So you bought that great controller with all those knobs and sliders? So now what? How do you utilize them? First, tweak the
parameter you want to control, then press Command-L. Now move the knob or slider on your controller you want to assign
it to. Done. The command is remembered globally so even when opening other projects, the link between parameter and
physical MIDI controller stays.

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Learn new Controller Assignment with Command-L

#8 - Record Live Parameter Movements (Control-Command-A)


It forms the shape of an A on the Macs keyboard. This is one of my favorite Logic command. This is actually a toggle
command. It toggles between reading automation that has already been recorded and recording automation. Ever tweak a
knob on a synth or e"ect and wish you could just grab what you were doing right there and then? Use Control-Command-A
and you literally never have to stop while Logic is playing whatever synth, e"ect parameter, or mixing levels you adjust, get
recorded on the spot as automation. Toggle to return this parameter to the read value by pressing the command again.

Toggle Current Track Automation/Latch with Control-Command-A

#9 - Repeat Entire Sections (Control-Command - R)


Control-Command-R is great for adding length to your songs. You can easily repeat a section, then remove regions to start
sequencing/arranging. Create builds by working backward from a drop/peak section. Create a cycle/loop around the area
you want to repeat !rst, then use this great command.

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Repeat Section Between Locators with Control-Command-R

#10 - Convert Loops to real copies (Control-L)


This is great for editing a speci!c loop. When working with looped regions, remember that if you edit the original, all the
copies are edited too. What if you want to edit a single region from those loops? Using Control-L turns any selected looped
regions into independent editable copies. After using this command you can easily edit the notes in a speci!c MIDI region or
chop an audio region without e"ecting the others. Keep in mind that copied audio regions are still linked back to the original
audio !le, so if you make a destructive edit (like in the sample editor) all the others will change too. That leads me to the !nal
command wait, thats 11 right? Yeah, I couldnt help it!

Convert Loops to Regions with Control-L

#11 - Convert Audio Regions to Independent Copies (Option-Command - F)


Destructive edits to audio !les are done in the Sample Editor. Reversing, changing the pitch of a speci!c area, fading in and
out, and more are a few reasons to destructively edit an audio !le. When you do this, and you dont use OptionCommand-F, the original !le and all its loops are changed. If you do use this command on a region, a window will appear
asking you to save it as a new copy. Logic should name the region automatically for you so simply pressing Save should do

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the trick. Now you can go to town destructively editing this independent piece of audio without worry.

Convert Regions to New Audio Files with Option-Command-F

Thanks for reading. Hope these commands help speed up your work$ow while producing your tracks!

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Darren Burgos
More articles by this author

Darren started making music on computers when he was a teenager in 1987. His !rst computer was an Amiga, and when he realized
the power of computer-based production, his addiction for making electronic music began. Darren switched to Mac in 1994 and
started using Logic Pro. He's been involved in many music projects over the years incl... Read More

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