How to Export Stems In Ableton Live

By _bayland | Ableton Live

Mar 22
exporting ableton live feature photo

How to Export Stems In Ableton Live


If you are sending your song to us online for mixing and mastering, it’s very important to make sure your files are sent correctly. Thankfully, Ableton makes it quick and easy for you to export your stems!

A stem is a single element of the song exported as a single file. Multiple tracks that you’re rendering at one time can be put together to recreate the song. Ableton has a very simple and straight forward way of doing this, so let’s go through it now!

Step 1 – Label Your Tracks

Before exporting anything, you need to make sure everything is labeled. Whenever you send your files to someone else, it’s important to make sure the person it’s going to knows what every file contains. Ableton exports multiple audio tracks, so if you have a vocal and a snare on one single track, it will make things a little bit crazy. It also labels the audio tracks based on what the track names are, and not the clip names. Select each track name and label them to represent what that tracks are doing. 

Ableton labeling

Step 2 – Arrangement Is Everything!

Ableton’s session view allows you to play various Scenes and Clips in any particular order. You can render audio from the Session view just specify the amount of time with your current selection that you would like to have rendered.

In the Arrangement View, you can either drag-select the area that you would like to export…

Arrangement view rendering - Ableton

Or, you can use the loop selection range to choose what area of the song you’d like to export…

Using loop selection - Ableton

In this mode, just make sure that you have something in the arrangement!

Step 3 – Export

Once you’re ready to export your stems to audio and you’ve highlighted your arrangement (or set up your loop range), press: Command-Shift-R

This box will appear:

Export options - Ableton Live

Ensure the bottom section of the box indicates the right time range.

Set the time range - Ableton

Indicate if you want to render in stereo, or mono. For stems, or separated tracks, choose “mono”. If you have stereo loops in your arrangement, you will need to go back and render those in “stereo” separately.

More options - Ableton

Finally, select the all the tracks you want to export. If yo want all the tracks, select the “All Tracks” option.

All Tracks option - Ableton

Important: When Ableton Live asks you where you want to save the ‘audio file’, create a new folder and name it by the name of the song. Export all of those files in the same folder.  

Once complete, follow this link to our upload form and follow the instructions.

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About the Author

_bayland brings years of recording studio experience to Studio 411. He has worked with numerous independent artists, major label acts and been fully immersed in the music business since graduating from Full Sail University. Other than his experience, Chris brings great conversation, wit and a strong enthusiasm for Peaky Blinders.

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