How Do I Loop Record Vocals and Then Compile Best Takes

I am a total nuby to Ardour 6.9 on my mac and can’t find out how to loop record vocals and then compile the best takes. Or is this not possible yet?

It’s possible. Some folks do it with playlists (Playlists and comping workflow - #7 by seablade). I though only used stacked layers for comping multiple/looped vocals.

Yeah, like Torstenphilipp said. Use a new playlist for each new vocal track. You can go back and listen to each one afterwards and compile that way. That’s the way I do it. Then you can cut/paste the best sections that into a new track or new playlist. However, you’ll need to create a new playlist for each ‘loop’. As far as I know it won’t do it automatically.

So I had to do back and remember what the heck I said in that link, had me worried as I didn’t remember posting a workflow for this, but I probably should at some point…

At any rate using Stacked view can make comping takes together without playlists MUCH easier in my opinion. Nothing wrong with the playlist approach if that works for you, but worth at least looking at stacked view:

Using playlists for comping becomes more powerful when you are recording multiple tracks for each take, ie:

I swear Harrison had a video on comping vocals that used the stacked view, but I can’t find it now, maybe someone else can jump in with a link to one though.


Thank you so much for your time in replying it’s mucho appreciated.


I mucho appreciate your reply to this.


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Many thanks this is a big help.


You probably think about this one where he demonstrates comping with both stacked and layered methods. Personally, I prefer to spread every (vocal) take on it’s each track and move clicks upwards to the mail comping track, but that’s just me. For instruments, I do not do takes, just overdubs on relevant places.


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Yeah, that’s the missing part I think. Loop mode is great for hands-free multi-takes. Having to manually create a new playlist on every loop (if that’s even possible) kind of defeats the point.

I wrote a Lua script to turn layers into playlists.

Wasn’t the video I was thinking of, but at least it introduces it.

Hi Chromeguy and thank you for your input on this. Now my question is, how do I implement your script into Ardour to get this working since I am not a computer coder and don’t have a clue of what to do?



The manual explains how to do that.

In short, download it, put it in the correct folder (that manual page tells you where), right-click on one of the free action buttons in the top-right of Ardour and choose the script from the list (might need to use its Refresh button if you can’t see it). It’s named “(jd) Layers To Playlists”.

Hi John,

Many thanks for this and I will have a go doing this. By the way, the next version of Ardour 7 will have the clips function like Ableton Live & Logic,
so I wonder if that will allow loop recording for midi and audio too?

Cheers and Take Care


Loop recording has always been there for audio, at least for years. Just set a loop range, arm the track(s) and the Rec button, and hit the L key, then play or sing as you wish!

There is nothing for MIDI at the moment, but the developers are rewriting underlaying MIDI code for the upcoming version 7 and hopefully, recording while MIDI looping will be implemented after that.

Thanks, Jostein,

That sounds simple enough, but those other responses about having to create a separate playlist for each loop file to be able
to comp your best take is a little confusing. What do you do to comp your best vocal track?



My way of doing it is probably not the typical way of doing it, but here it goes: I usually record every take (it doesn’t matter if it’s a whole track or loop) on the same track. That means that each take is its own layer in the track.

After recording, I make new tracks, one for each layer plus one for the comped track. Then I find a part from a track I like and just mark it and copy it to the comp track.

When it comes to playlists, these links might help you:

Many thanks for your time to reply and clarify.

Stay Well


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