I’ve been experimenting with the use of the APC40 and Launchpad in controlling the recently released FL Studio 11. This new version of FL Studio has some preset scripts for the APC40 and Launchpad, and the ability to create your own. I like to use the APC40 for launching clips having used it with Ableton for a while, so I keep the APC40 doing that same task in the “Performance Mode” of FL Studio 11. However, I’m using the Launchpad to minimize my mouse activity in the program, and I really like it in terms of workflow.
The preset scripts are pretty useful, but in my experience with them I’m not real keen on continually flipping pages on the launchpad, nor am I that keen about the fader control on the Launchpad. Also, the preset scripts don’t take advantage of all of the available system commands in an efficient manner. The Image-Line forum has some decent reference on how to do the custom scripts, but I haven’t found much in the way of custom scripts that people are sharing on that forum, nor much discussion on the topic. That is why I thought I’d provide an entry on how I created one, and why.
Custom Scripting of Launchpad Commands
In order to create a custom layout for the Launchpad in use with FL Studio, you need to locate the .scr files in your FL Studio directly associated with the Launchpad (the file path should be like this from the main program folder – …\FL Studio 11\System\Hardware specific\Launchpad\). You can simply rename the Page#.scr files (where the # represents a number), to reorder the scripts according to your preference and/or delete ones you don’t find useful. Accordingly, you can create your own custom script and have it be the first page, the last page, or somewhere in between based on your preferences. You’ll need notepad or some other text editor (like Notepad++) to edit and create custom scripts.
The custom scripts consist of 6 values for each command line:
1. Pad Number to which you want to assign.
2. Destination Channel – the destination channel indicates what type of command is being sent (system = -1, note channel = 0-15, controller absolute = 16-31, controller relative = 32-47), and dictates what values are necessary and/or permitted with the following two parameters.
3. Command/Note/Controller – indicates the particular system command, particular note, or particular controller
4. Velocity/Controller Value – for system commands such as jog this value can be positive or negative, otherwise the value is 0; for notes and controllers the value will range between 0-127.
5. Color Off – the color the pad displays when untouched.
6. Color On – The color the pad turns when pressed.
Here is a table of how the values relate to each other based on the type of behavior you wish to control with the Launchpad:
Here is the layout of how my custom script controls various system commands:
The script is available download here – make sure to rename the file to Page#.scr (e.g., Page13.scr), otherwise FL Studio will not recognize the script. The word document with a blank template and table of system commands so that you may set up your own custom Launchpad script is available for download here.