Instant ACID

Instant ACID

Instant ACID from CMP Books completes the circle of Instant books for the core Sony Media Software products along side of Instant Vegas and Instant Sound Forge. My co-author Iacobus and myself were both beta testers for ACID Pro 5.0 and are regular contributors to online forums in the ACID communities. You can read a review of the book on  You can order it today at or

The Instant series of books are not “bible” books. They do not tell you everything you wanted to know but were afraid to ask, nor do they go into endless details about why things work the say they do. What they do provide is instant access to how to accomplish core tasks quickly with workflows the authors have found to be most useful.

We have tried to fill this book with enough basics to get you productive quickly and enough advanced tips and techniques to keep you exploring new directions. Instant ACID does not have to be read cover-to-cover to understand it. It is written more like a task-oriented reference that you can use to just learn the areas that are of interest to you. It is very visual and to the point. We hope you get as much out of reading it as we did writing it. If you have any questions, you can always find us on the Sony ACID Forums  (John Rofrano is JohnnyRoy and Iacobus is mD)

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction

  • Track Area
  • Beat Rulers and Time Rulers
  • Multiple Docking Areas
  • Setting Up ACID the Way YOU Work

Chapter 2: Fundamentals of Looping

  • ACID Properties/ACIDization
  • Loops, Beatmapped Tracks, and One Shots
  • Our First Project- Drag, Drop, and Paint
  • Cut, Copy, Paste, and Ripple
  • Changing Tempo, Time Signatures, and Keys
  • Markers, Regions, and Commands
  • Saving a Project with All Its Loops

Chapter 3: Considerations for Nonlinear Video Editors

  • Working with a Video Track
  • Time Markers- Tempo Markers
  • Adjusting Tempo to Match Marker to Cursor

Chapter 4: Tips and Tricks

  • Reverse Parts of Your Loops
  • Use the Bus Tracks View
  • Create a Natural Chorus Effect
  • The “Wall of Sound” Effect
  • Pitch-Shifting Tracks
  • Detuning Tracks
  • Employing Other Creative Tricks

Chapter 5: Beatmapping Existing Songs

  • Know Your Copyrights
  • Extracting Audio from CDs
  • Matching Tempo
  • Knowing When to Start
  • Fixing Tempo Drift Using ACID

Chapter 6: Advanced Looping

  • Manipulating Loops
  • Reversing Events
  • Pseudo-Granular Synthesis/Stutter Effect
  • The Paint Tool and One-Shots
  • Rendering FX with a Track

Chapter 7: Grooving to the Beat!

  • Applying Grooves
  • The Groove Pool
  • The Groove Editor
  • The Groove Editor and the Properties of a Loop Track
  • Groove Cloning

Chapter 8: Organization Techniques

  • Using Track Colors to Organize
  • Using Folders Tracks to Organize and Edit
  • Customize Media Folders
  • Media Manager

Chapter 9: Creating Your Own Loops

  • Chopping to a New Track Using the Chopper
  • Constructing New Loops Using Different Events
  • Insert Event at Play Cursor/Paste Event At Play Cursor
  • MIDI Tracks- Rendering a New Loop
  • Stretch Markers, Beat Markers, and Beat Anchors
  • ACIDization of Rendered Loops
  • ACIDized Track Types

Chapter 10: Recording Audio

  • Audio Recording Hardware
  • Setting Audio Device Preferences
  • ASIO
  • Windows Classic Wave
  • The Record Window
  • Monitoring While Recording via Hardware
  • Recording Multiple Takes
  • Working with Recorded Tracks
  • Using the Metronome

Chapter 11: Recording MIDI

  • MIDI Recording Hardware
  • Selecting a MIDI Controller
  • Selecting a MIDI Interface
  • Selecting a MIDI Output Device
  • Plugging It All Together
  • VST Instrument Setup
  • Multi-Port VST Instruments
  • Making Your MIDI Recording
  • Using the Metronome
  • Selecting the Recording Device
  • Recording- Working with Track Properties
  • Heads and Tails and What To Do About Them
  • Strategy for Recording MIDI Loops
  • Tracks and MIDI Channels- Routing to MIDI Devices
  • Addressing Multi-Channel MIDI Devices

Chapter 12: Syncing ACID with Other Programs

  • Using ACID as a ReWire Mixer (Host)
  • Using ACID as a ReWire Device (Client)
  • Syncing to MIDI Timecode
  • Syncing to MIDI Clock
  • View Outgoing Timecode or Clock

Chapter 13: Applying Effects Plug-Ins

  • DirectX Effects
  • Effects Chains
  • Tempo-Based DirectX Effects
  • VST Effects Support
  • Effects as an Insert or Send (Assignable FX)

Chapter 14: Mixing

  • Approaching the Mix
  • Inserts and Sends
  • Buses
  • Bus-to-Bus Routing
  • Automation
  • 5.1 Surround Mix

Chapter 15: Mastering

  • Mastering Effects

Chapter 16: Burning the Final Project

  • Track-at-Once CD Burning
  • Disc-at-Once CD Burning

Chapter 17: Useful Formulas and Musical Aids

  • Calculating Tempo and Seconds
  • Calculating Delay and Decay
  • Transposition Line
  • I-IV-V-I Progression Chart

Chapter 18: Final Thoughts