invention of digital and desktop audio workstations (or DAWs for short) has
allowed multimedia experts and novices alike to manipulate audio files, music,
and sound in new and creative ways that were previously impossible or only doable
by large state-of-the-art recording studios. Most popular is the use of loops.
A loop is a short piece of audio, usually a sound effect or a royalty-free music
file, that can be repeated over and over again to create a continuous, longer
piece of audio. Some examples of common loops include nature sounds (like country
ambience, rain, ocean sounds, trains, etc.), drum beats and grooves, and other
types of atmospheric ambience. These looped sounds can then be used to create
what is known as a sound effects bed, or a continuous atmospheric ambience,
or even an entirely new song.
Productiontrax.com has a wide variety of “loopable” sound
effects and royalty free music grooves and beats that you can use to create
looped beds and music. Once you download the track you plan to use, you will
need to import it into the digital audio workstation program of your choice.
Popular DAWs for manipulating high quality audio files include Cubase, Logic, Performer, Nuendo, Reason,
etc. All of these programs have lower cost “lite” versions for less
experienced users and are available for all platforms. You can also use other
non-destructive audio editing programs, as many are available as freeware,
shareware, or as low-priced stand-alone versions.
Whichever software program you use, you will need to locate your imported audio
file, then simply create multiple instances of the file, set to playback one
right after the other. Most of the above programs allow you to handle files
like this visually, appearing as blocks on the screen. Simply line up the blocks
so that they are all in a row and touching end to end. It may take some tweaking
and additional audio-editing expertise to use just portions of loopable files
to avoid pops and gaps. General practice is to locate the points within the
audio file where the audio wave crosses the zero line, and make your cuts at
Once you have lined up your duplicate instances, simply mix-down your newly
created audio sequence (also called a digital mix-down, or bouncing audio tracks),
and save your newly created file to your hard drive – and, whallah, a
continuously looped audio sfx or royalty free music track to bring into your
video or multimedia program.