The Basics of FL Studio's Interface
Hello good sir, if you've made it here, you're probably wondering what the hell's happening when you see this.
That's good that you're asking questions, and welcome to FL Studio. Over on the top right of the screen, you'll see these weird buttons, we'll call these "icons".
Let's go over what each icon does from left to right.
I'll try to quickly explain what each icon means, and what their respective feature is. We'll go more in-depth into said features in future tutorials, but right now we're basically just familiarizing ourself with FL's layout.
- View Playlist - Brings the Playlist to the front of the screen. The playlist holds all of our patterns, samples, and probably other cool stuff.
- View Piano Roll - Brings up our Piano Roll. This is where we place our Midi Notes (or "Notes" for short).
- View Channel Rack - Brings up our Channel Rack. This is where we can see a list of most of our project's assets, categorized by folders.
- View Mixer - Brings up our Mixer. This is too complicated to put into layman's terms at the moment, but all you need to know is that it's a mixer, like what you'll find at your local nightclub, radio station, or even in your hippie grandpa's garage in a box he loans you full of old vinyl records from when he was a DJ in the 70s.
- View browser / plugin picker - Toggles our asset browser on the left of our screen if that's your thing I guess.
- Open project / plugin picker - Cool little menu that I personally haven't used, but it seems cool, maybe you should use it if you think it suits your style.
- Open plugin / project picker - Shows us a menu of all of our plugins. I prefer to use the one in the Channel Rack, but once again, whatever suits your style will work best most of the time.
- View tempo tapper - Lets us tap out a consistent tempo with the left mouse button, and sends us back the BPM.
- View touch controller - Shows a drumpad-like interface for the instrument we have selected. I don't understand it, these are getting really specific.
- Purchase FL Studio, upgrades and plugins. - Lets you buy FL Studio, upgrades, and plugins!
Let's take a break from the buttons a bit, check out this File Explorer-type thing.
This is called the "Asset Browser". If you've ever used a computer, you'll be familiar with folders. So don't be afraid to click on them. If you want to add some folders to this mega-list, don't worry, we're getting there.
Back to buttons for our final stop, this is the menu panel, which acts like a toolbar. You've probably interacted with these before, so I'll just go over some key items.
Options > File settings - Hey look, this is where we can add our custom folders. (Typically for Samples, Soundfonts, and VSTs, but you can add anything really).
Options > Project general settings - You can change your time signature here! choose from the drop-down menu, or make your own!
Options > Project info - Everyone loves metadata! Here, you can add metadata to the files you export, as well as the FLP.
Everything else here should be reletively self-explanitory. For more information, please refer to the manual.
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