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Lesson 7 - Combinator: The Pregnant Instrument

In This Lesson: How to effectively use the combinator

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How To Use This Lesson

Watch the video below and take the quiz at the bottom of the page. If you need a bit of extra help with the videos, then by all means read the accompanying written content (the written content on this page simply restates what was said in the video).

Make sure you set the video below to at least "720p HD", if not "1080p HD", and then set it to Fullscreen as well. Otherwise the video won't display properly, and it will be quite difficult to follow the tutorial.

You can set it to 1080p HD by clicking the little Gearbox icon at the bottom of the video, and clicking "1080p HD". You can set the video to fullscreen by choosing the very bottom-right button in the video.

The Combinator

Combinator is not an instrument in itself, but it holds instruments and effects within it.

Right Click the Rack > Combinator to add a combinator to a song. This is a useful way to create a new instrument, as you can make it literally any instrument that you would like to make it.

  • I recommend putting instruments and effects inside combinators ALWAYS, as it helps to reduce clutter and enables you to manage your instruments and effects without getting overwhelmed.

Even the mastering suite is contained within a special type of combinator.

  • You are able to connect specific effects to the 4 knobs at the top of the combinator to create easy access to your "Most used" effects within your instruments. This is a more advanced technique, so I won't cover it in this lesson, but I wanted to share with you that it is there.

Main 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 Final Quiz


  1. The combinator is an Instrument. (True/False)
  2. Exercise: Create a Combinator
  3. I should always put my instruments inside a combinator when they will have multiple effects layered on top of them. (True/False)
  4. Exercise: Place an instrument, and 3 effects of your choice within a combinator. Play notes on your MIDI keyboard to make sure it all works.


  1. False. The combinator HOLDS instruments and effects, but makes no sounds in and of itself.
  2. Exercise
  3. True.
  4. Exercise

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