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Eric Barfield

Founder + Patch Creator

Patch Foundry

5 Hidden Tricks In MainStage 

5 Hidden Tricks In MainStage 

MainStage is an incredibly deep program- it’s easy to learn the basics, but there’s a whole other layer underneath. Here are 5 things MainStage can do that you probably haven’t done before with it: 



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1. It has a LFO/Envelope that you can map to any parameter. 


With the addition of midi FX, MainStage added the ability to control any parameter with either a customizable LFO or an envelope, essentially turning the entire MainStage program into a semi modular patchable synth. 


How could you use this? You could add sidechaining to any patch or parameter, or use it to mod the pitch of an instrument to create a chorus fx, and hundreds more. 




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2. It’s possible to change the metronome to any sound or beat you want. 


It’s easy to change the sound of the built in metronome to anything you want, from a cowbell in Ultrabeat to a tripped out synth pluck in Alchemy. In the channel strip window, select “show metronome channel strip”, and then swap in any VST instrument you want.  



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3. There’s a solid looper plugin in MainStage. 


While it’s not mind-blowing when it comes to its feature set, MainStage’s Looper plugin has a very solid BOSS-esque looper plugin that allows multi tracking, fades, and more. Under the Audio FX part of the channel strip, go to Delay>Looper to get started. 



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4. It’s possible to merge patches with a single click. 


MainStage 3 introduced the ability to merge multiple patches with a command instead of manually copying parameters. This allows you to quickly created a layered synth sound with a single command. 


Click on the two instruments you want to merge, then under the Patch List part of the window, click the gear icon and select “New Patch From Selected Patches”. 


5. You can use an iPad to control MainStage. 


MainStage integrates with the Logic Remote app, allowing you to do everything from trigger drum loops to select patches. For more info, check out this article. 

New MainStage Training Course

New MainStage Training Course

Ask Patch Foundry: Auto Swell

Ask Patch Foundry: Auto Swell