No-Input DAW (Logic Pro X Feedback Loops & Sound Design)

Tutorial on “no-input mixing” in a DAW (Logic Pro X, in this case) for wild feedback-based sound design.

With a little knowledge of digital signal flow, we can easily set up an aux track in our DAW as a feedback loop–sending the track back into itself. Once we start adding effects, we can achieve new and unexpected sounds. This technique could be a way to generate some new sonic material, add some interest to a drum loop, or even generate vast, evolving soundscapes.

0:00 Intro / Casio Beat
0:39 Output to Aux Track
1:06 Feeding Back with a Bus Send
2:20 Adding Effects to the Loop
4:14 More Subtle Effects
4:58 More Extreme (Pitch Shifter)
5:17 Removing the “Input”
6:47 Talking through the No-Input Mixer
8:18 Closing Thoughts

More Logic Pro X tutorials:

Pd Patch from Scratch: Ring Modulation and Filterbank

A quick and easy Pure Data patch-from-scratch tutorial building another feedback loop with a delay and a ring modulator, this time with a fixed filter bank.

Inspired by the music of Jaap Vink, with three sine waves, a filterbank, a delay, and some feedback, we can make some slow evolving-complex and dynamic sounds.

In this patch we take a sine wave, ring modulate it, then ring modulate that result before running into a filterbank, delay, and then feeding it back on itself.

There’s no talking on this one, just building the patch, and listening to it go.

More feedback loops (in analog):

Feedback Loops with Cheap Stuff

Create dynamic feedback loops on a cheap mixer and pedals. With just a few pieces of equipment you can make wonderful, interactive, and unpredictable sound systems.

Over the summer, I’ve been thinking a lot about feedback and how simple devices can create complex sounds when fed back into themselves. Alongside checking out a lot of great music, I’ve been reading about 1950s “Cybernetics” and 1990s Japanese “Noise Music”, and considering the expressive possibilities of resonance and feedback. In this video I show a simple way to put together a noisy feedback loop setup with inexpensive equipment I had sitting in my drawer.

Further Study:

Sarah Belle Read’s Tutorial on No-Input Mixing

La Synth├Ęse Humaine, Feedback Loops Explained and Demonstrated on Serge Synthesizers

Norbert Wiener, “The Human Use of Human Beings” (1950)

David Novak, “Japanoise: Music at the Edge of Circulation” (2013)