Setup for basic electronic / game music

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I'm mostly a non musician these days, but I've been pondering doing a little bit of electronic / retro game music production.
I'm intending entirely with synths at the moment.

I have a Macbook Pro and a Reaper license, but I'm thinking I won't use that as Reaper is fairly sucky for MIDI stuff. 

I've had a little play around with Garageband and that seems like it would probably do 90% of what I need, but I'm also pondering Ableton Lite as I've heard good things about it.

Be interested in any tips from anyone who dabbles in the above.

I imagine I'll get pretty tired of piano roll editing so I may end up investing in a little mini controller. The Novation Launchkey looks interesting and includes Ableton Lite which I've heard good things about. If I went the Garage band route the Akai MPK Mini MKII
 also looks cool.
Handsome_Chris said: Like white Nile Rodgers. 
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  • bbill335bbill335 Frets: 648
    Have you tried lsdj on a modded Game Boy? It has its own weird interface but it's the real deal.
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  • revsorgrevsorg Frets: 382
    I'm definitely down the dabbling end of the spectrum but I've invested a bit of time and money in this.  I've got an up-to-date version of Reason which I've never quite got on with, but does have a lot of potential.  When you said synths, Reason is the first thing I thought of.

    But I have found I prefer Ableton Live, seems somehow more understandable and you can play around endlessly in it.  I got an Akai APC Mini in the Maplin closing down sale for just £37 and it's interesting to play around with, but I can't shake the feeling that I'm not actually creating music with it, just remixing something that someone else has created.  Maybe this is because of a lack of application, effort and understanding.  I also have an Akai MPK25 keyboard which is fun to make sound with, but I'm not really a keyboard player and once again I can't shake the feeling that there's a limit to my exploits.  Not a feeling I get when fiddling around on my guitar.
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  • monquixotemonquixote Frets: 8152
    bbill335 said:
    Have you tried lsdj on a modded Game Boy? It has its own weird interface but it's the real deal.

    I had the korg ds synth.

    Don't really want to get into actual chiptune hardware.
    Handsome_Chris said: Like white Nile Rodgers. 
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  • Flink_PoydFlink_Poyd Frets: 2355
    I've got a Korg Taktile USB controller I'm considering selling as I'm looking at buying a Korg Monologue. I had the mini keyboards and just didn't get on with them. Keys can be cramped and make your hand ache after a while
    Nobody is guaranteed tomorrow.....


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  • bbill335bbill335 Frets: 648
    bbill335 said:
    Have you tried lsdj on a modded Game Boy? It has its own weird interface but it's the real deal.

    I had the korg ds synth.

    Don't really want to get into actual chiptune hardware.
    Fair enough. 

    For a retro 16-bit thing, there's a lot of SNES soundfont resources at this site - http://www.williamkage.com/snes_soundfonts/#sm

    You can just drop the soundfont files into ableton iirc, don't know about other DAWs.
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  • octatonicoctatonic Frets: 18487
    Ableton Live is the way to go.
    Or Logic.
    I am the juice of four limes.
    Trading Feedback
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  • HeartfeltdawnHeartfeltdawn Frets: 11480
    I'm mostly a non musician these days, but I've been pondering doing a little bit of electronic / retro game music production.
    I'm intending entirely with synths at the moment.

    I have a Macbook Pro and a Reaper license, but I'm thinking I won't use that as Reaper is fairly sucky for MIDI stuff. 

    I've had a little play around with Garageband and that seems like it would probably do 90% of what I need, but I'm also pondering Ableton Lite as I've heard good things about it.

    Be interested in any tips from anyone who dabbles in the above.

    I imagine I'll get pretty tired of piano roll editing so I may end up investing in a little mini controller. The Novation Launchkey looks interesting and includes Ableton Lite which I've heard good things about. If I went the Garage band route the Akai MPK Mini MKII
     also looks cool.

    If you've ever used trackers in the past, have a look at Renoise. 

    If you want to try Ableton Live Lite, jump over to the KVR sales page. You can easily pick up a copy of Live Lite for peanuts. Like this for example... 

    http://www.kvraudio.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=43&t=503178&p=7086945&hilit=ableton+lite#p7086945

    Personally I prefer Reaper to Ableton for MIDI editing but it's really horses for courses. 

    And for a starter plugin, try Chipsounds by Plogue. 

    https://www.plogue.com/products/chipsounds.html
    Clarity over quantity.  
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  • monquixotemonquixote Frets: 8152
    edited May 28
    Thanks for all the tips guys.

    I'm still playing with Garageband at the moment and that's proving quite good for simple stuff.

    This channel is blowing my mind at the moment:
    Handsome_Chris said: Like white Nile Rodgers. 
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  • thecolourboxthecolourbox Frets: 3204
    Those Akai mini controllers (the keyboard ones) are very very hard to play as your fingers feel very cramped and it feels a chore to press them. Though if you're only playing short mono lines they may be OK

    And if there's anything good about me, I'm the only one who knows

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  • monquixotemonquixote Frets: 8152
    Those Akai mini controllers (the keyboard ones) are very very hard to play as your fingers feel very cramped and it feels a chore to press them. Though if you're only playing short mono lines they may be OK

    I can't really play keys properly anyway, but I am pondering between a mini keyboard controller and something with full size keys.
    Handsome_Chris said: Like white Nile Rodgers. 
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