How To Tune Vocals In Logic Pro

February 7, 2012

DAW Fundamentals, Logic Pro

Pitch correction technology has become prevalent over the last few years thanks to heavyweights like Autotune and Melodyne.  Their impact on mainstream music is undeniable.  In this demonstration we’ll dive into Logic’s Pitch Correction processor and show you how to get quality results in any situation.

Take a listen to this example we polished off using Logic’s Pitch Correction.

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Here’s a look at this plug-in and its key features.

Key Features:

Root – represents the root key you want the pitch correction to respond to.

Scale – represents the musical scale that the pitch correction responds to.

Response – the response refers to the amount of time a signal can pass thru the device before pitch correction kicks in.

Faster response times tune bad notes quicker and result in a more dramatic effect (think T-Pain and Autotune).  Slower response times allow more of the signal source (vocals) to pass thru unaffected before the correction is applied. This results in less of an effect.

Key Features Simplified

The root and scale work together to decide what notes are acceptable and what notes need to be corrected.  The response determines the point (in time) at which the correction kicks in.

In order to properly tune your vocals using this Pitch Correction processor you will need to know what key your instrumental is in and input that information into it.

In our example, the song is in the key of B Major so my root is B and my scale is Major as in figure 2.

Pitch Correction with proper Root and Scale information.

 

If we look at the piano roll on the device, we can see that certain keys are highlighted in the center, while others are not.  This is visual feed back as to what notes are acceptable.  You can manually activate / deactivate any note by clicking on it when necessary.

Applying Pitch correction

Here’s a snippet of the vocals before pitch correction was applied.

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As you can hear, it’s definitely out of tune and doesn’t sound that great.

Now, listen to the result with pitch correction applied using the settings in figure 2.

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You should hear a major improvement.  If we wanted the effect to be less obvious I would just input a slower response time.  The opposite is true for a faster response time.

Processing Your Pitched Vocals

After tuning your vocals you will want to process them with additional effects so they sit cleanly within the mix of your song.

For starters, some Compression, EQ, and a light Stereo Delay will do the trick; but you can take it much further than that when need be.  Here’s a look at some of the main processors in my signal chain.

Some of Logic’s effect processors that were used on these vocals.

 

Take a listen to the vocals with additional processing.

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The vocals sound crisp, clean and will compliment the beat nicely.

Summary

If you’re a producer looking to spice up your productions with some nice vocal cuts, be sure to check out the vocal loop packs at Platinum Loops.  They have some great samples that will give your music a big boost.

 

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