How To Use Templates In Logic Pro | Creating Custom TemplatesOct 29, 2023
Crafting a complex piece of music from scratch in Logic Pro takes long hours and delicate measures in meticulously recording tracks and creating plugin chains to process audio signals. There are many things to consider when creating a new project: How would the arrangement of this song look like? What are the instruments you want to use? What are the effects you want to use on vocals?
No two Logic sessions are identical. However, the foundation for some of your projects, especially if you’re working on an album, might be very similar. For instance, you might have stumbled upon virtual instruments, drum kits, and vocal processing effects that you want to use across different songs.
Thankfully, Logic Pro allows you to use templates to streamline your workflow. Instead of building everything from scratch every time you create a new project, you can use templates to have certain tools ready to go. In this post, I will guide you through everything you need to know about using templates in Logic Pro.
Using Logic Pro’s Default Templates
Before we get into creating custom templates, let’s see the stock options that come with Logic. These templates can be excellent sources of inspiration to get going in the right direction.
You can access templates by clicking “File” from the top-left corner of your screen and clicking “New from Template…”
Within the templates menu, you’ll find tutorials with step-by-step instructions within the session’s notes for Live Loops, the Quick Sampler, Drum Machine Designer, and the Step Sequencer. Moreover, you have project templates for various genres, including Hip Hop and Electronic.
Last but not least, Logic offers a bunch of ready-to-use Live Loops grids inspired by different music scenes and artists that you can use to flesh out ideas.
Let’s take a look at Logic’s “Songwriter” session. You can find it in the “Project Templates” section. It features a simple drummer track, three audio track presets for recording vocals, acoustic guitar, and bass, and a software instrument piano for which you can write MIDI regions.
Creating Your Own Templates In Logic Pro
Creating templates depends on your preferences and workflow. The point of a custom template is to have a tailored session that works for you. So, what I describe here is by no means a one-size-fits-all template that suits everyone. These are just some of the tools and features that help me save time when working on new projects.
You can customize almost everything when creating a new template. You can even have certain windows open by default. For instance, I like to have the file browser open for quick access to the samples I have on my computer. If I keep that window open when saving my template, I will always have it pop on my screen when I create a new project.
One of the first things worth mentioning is the arrangement marker tool from the Global Tracks area.
I mainly create pop songs, and more often than not, the foundations of my arrangements follow the same pattern: starting with an intro, moving into a couple of verses, pre-choruses, and choruses, and ending with a bridge followed by another chorus and an outro.
You can use arrangement markers to section out Logic’s main grid to keep your session well-organized. It will look something like the screenshot below.
Although similar, arrangement markers and regular markers have different functions in the global tracks area. Click here to learn more about how to use both in your Logic Pro projects.
Next, I’d like to create a custom vocals chain. For me, the essentials are the Channel EQ, Compressor, DeEsser 2, and two main buses for reverb and delay. If you’re new to the world of audio processing, click here to learn how to make vocals sound professional.
Moreover, I’d like to shape out my electric guitar tones to stay consistent throughout different songs. The same story goes for acoustic guitars, synths, and bass. This helps create a sense of unity and connectedness within an album.
Logic’s built-in Pedalboard and Amp Designer are excellent simulators for creating guitar sounds. Moreover, you can check out other amp emulators you can install on Logic Pro to further fine-tune your guitar tone.
Another area I like to cover in my templates is the basic percussive sounds. No one should underestimate the role of drums in music projects. Although it’s faster to pick a Drummer track and let Logic do everything for you, spending time crafting the sound that suits your projects always leads to significantly more desirable results.
I usually don’t go overboard with the drums template. Generally, I like to find a kick, a snare, hi-hats, and snaps and build everything else around them in each project. You can click here to learn more about using the Drum Machine Designer (DMD) to create a custom kit in Logic Pro.
At the end, the template looks something like this:
Once you’re done creating your template, you can go ahead and save it. Click “File" from the top-left corner of your screen and select “Save as Template…”
What’s more, you can program Logic to always load up your custom template when you boot up the DAW. Here’s how you do it:
- Click “Logic Pro” from the top-left corner of your screen.
- Hover your pointer on “Settings” and select “General…”
- Change the “Startup Action” to “Create New Project Using Default Template.”
- Select your custom template as the default template.
Final Thoughts On Using Logic Pro Templates
Templates can save you a ton of time when working on new projects. Logic’s default templates are useful cornerstones to get inspiration. Moreover, creating custom templates can help you skip numerous tedious tasks and jump right into recording your ideas.
For more lessons regarding music production, mixing, mastering, and songwriting, check out my Free 6 Pillars To Learn Logic Pro Faster guidebook.