When using multiple instruments loaded in KONTAKT, you may want to route them to separate channels in Ableton Live. This is useful for example, if you wish to use different insert / send effects or apply Ableton Live's volume and panorama controls to each instrument individually.
The instructions below show how to configure KONTAKT 5 and Ableton Live for multi-output use. If using KONTAKT 6, simply choose 'Kontakt' as the plug-in and follow the same steps below:
- Load KONTAKT 5 into the first available MIDI Track in Ableton Live. In this example, KONTAKT 5 has been selected, which means 16 separate KONTAKT output channels (8 Stereo Channels) are available.
- Once KONTAKT is open, tick Outputs in the Workspace menu to make the outputs area visible at the bottom of KONTAKT's interface:
- Add or delete mixer channels in this area by clicking on the Add Channels or Delete Channel buttons within the mixer. At the bottom of each channel, a button represents the current KONTAKT output channel assignments. Click on this button to open KONTAKT's channel output configuration window and configure the signal path destination for each channel.
- Next, specify which physical out each KONTAKT channel should correspond to within Ableton Live. In this example, the first channel, named st. 1 (a stereo channel), is assigned to plugin out #1 (left channel) and plugin out #2 (right channel). The second channel, st. 2, is assigned to plugin out #3 (left channel) and plugin out #4 (right channel). Continue this process for the remaining mixer channels in KONTAKT depending on what you need.
Note: In Ableton Live, the physical outs are displayed as plugin out #1, plugin out #2 and so on. This name will vary depending on which sequencer you are using.
- After configuration is complete, click on the save output section preset as dialogue within the Presets / Batch Configuration drop-down menu to save your new KONTAKT mixer output configuration as a preset file.
- Set your newly created output section preset as the default output state for the VST Plugin version of KONTAKT.
- Load some instruments into KONTAKT 5. The Output menu of each instrument is set to the first available KONTAKT output channel: st. 1 by default. You can change the Output setting of the instruments by clicking in this area. A drop-down menu will appear allowing you to set a different output channel, eg. st. 2, st. 3, st. 4 and so on.
- Repeat the above step for the other KONTAKT 5 instruments in your rack you wish to send to separate outputs.
- Open the Mixer view in Ableton Live.
- In Ableton Live, create additional audio tracks to receive audio from KONTAKT's newly created output channels. In this example, 7 stereo audio tracks have been created.
- In the Ableton Live mixer, we must now configure the input of your first audio track (here named 2 Audio) to receive from the KONTAKT 5 output channel st. 2 (by default, the instrument track containing the KONTAKT 5 plug-in will receive audio from the KONTAKT 5 output channel st. 1). In the first drop-down menu under Audio From, set the audio track to receive from the KONTAKT plug-in (here named 1-Kontakt5).
- In the second drop-down menu under Audio From, select the respective KONTAKT plug-in output channel (eg. Kt. st.2/Kontakt 5, Kt. st.3/Kontakt 5 and so on).
Note: If you do not see the KONTAKT outputs listed in the field as shown above, please remove the Kontakt 5 plug-in, then reload it to your Ableton Live instrument track and repeat the steps in this tutorial.Assign the remaining audio inputs of the next audio tracks to receive from KONTAKT in the same way.
- Set Monitor to In for each audio track so that Ableton Live can receive audio from KONTAKT 5.
Now when you play an instrument in KONTAKT 5, it will be played back through the respective Ableton Live track its output is assigned to.