What are Click Tracks and How to Use Them?

You are eager to find out what is a click track and whether should you use it or not.

If so, you’re in the right place.

Because in today’s post I will explain what are click tracks and why you SHOULD use them.

This will help you utilize click tracks as a pro and grow as a musician or producer.

First, What are Click Tracks

A click track is a digital audio tool that provides a steady tempo that the band can play along with. 

The main benefits include:

  • making editing easier 
  • making a musician more precise

Who uses click tracks?

Click tracks are used by musicians to keep time and stay in sync with each other. 

They are also used by producers to create consistent sound on recordings

Should I use a click track?

Yes, using a click track will improve your sense of time and make your playing more precise.

Click tracks are introduced as a problem-solving mechanism for players who tend to speed up or slow done.

They became a “must-have” tool that record producers use to make the band sound tight.

metronome

Is a click track a metronome?

A click track is computer-generated, and a metronome is a physical piece of equipment.

While metronome has only one sound on a computer generated click track you can customize sounds.

Also, you can program a click track and make it automatically change the tempo.

Let me guide you on how to use click tracks live

If you are in the studio, any DAW has one, so that’s a piece of cake.

We’ll come back to that later.

#1 Download Soundbrenner metronome app

#2 Make a setlist of songs with the tempo for each

#3 Plugin your in-ears or headphones

#4 Click the song name (click track will start)

What if my click track is too quiet?

Try doing this

#1 Plugin your phone to a mixer (this can be done with an extension cable)

#2 Plugin your mixer to an amplifier so you can control the volume

#3 A simple tool like Behringer P2 will do the job

Pro tips:

Practicing with a click track

The purpose of a click track is accuracy, unity, and synchronization. 

Practicing with a metronome will make your brain and body adjust to the steady rhythm and wake up your measurement sense or “where the one is.”

So, when you mute the click track, your tempo will remain steady and your groove solid without speeding up or slowing down.

Apps/DAWs and online tools for click tracks

There are a few ways to get yourself a click track:

Use one of these apps:

How to use click track in a studio

click tracks in studio

You can make a click track easily in any DAW. I will show you how to make one in Studio One, but it is similar to all others. To make a click track in, you need to do the following:

  • Open a DAW (like Studio One) and create an audio project.
metronome app
  • Click on the “Metronome Setup” icon or the wrench icon in the bottom right corner, next to a small metronome icon that is used to turn metronome sound on and off
use click track in daw
  • You have the options “Accent”, “Beat”, and “Offbeat.”
app for click tracks
  • You can customize the sound of accents, off and on beats.
  • Precount will add x bars of click before recording starts
  • Preroll will add x bars of song before recording starts
  • Below you can turn click on and of or add it just before the song but not along with the song
  • Finally you can render a track so you can see it in the project and export later if you wish
generate a click track

To export a click track

  • double click on it
  • go to song
  • than export mixdown
  • hit ok
How do you make a click track change with tempo? 

You can make a click track change with tempo on almost every DAW.

In Studio one, to open a click track you just need to click the clock icon in the song menu.

axport click track
  • Next click the pencil icon in the upper menu
  • Let’s say you need to change the tempo from bar 3 to bar 5. You would use the pen to draw it and you would end up with something like this.
change click track tempo

To change the switch back to an arrow tool and, go to the box you just created and move the upper edge up or down. You will see the change where not says 100 BPM.

Let’s summarize

First, I explained what click tracks are and whether should you use them.

I showed you how to use them live and in a studio.

I answered important questions about the difference between a click track and a metronome and explained why you should practice with a click track.

Finally, I gave you some links to find and download click tracks or click track apps.

I hope you find this article helpful, say thanks by sharing it.

Denis Loncaric

Denis Loncaric

My name is Denis. I am a drummer, percussionist, music enthusiast, and blogger. Drums have been my passion for 15 years now. My idea is to write about the things I like and I am interested in. I want to share my drum passion with fellow musicians who walk, talk, and breathe drums.

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