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How To Stretch A Sample In FL Studio (Step-By-Step Guide)

There are two methods you can stretch a sample within FL Studio. Firstly, you can use the stretch feature, which is accessed using Shift+M from within the playlist view and dragging the sample to stretch it. Alternatively, you can open the sampler window and access more detailed time stretch controls. 

Sample Stretching In FL Studio

Being able to stretch a sample within FL Studio is a fantastic technique to add to your production arsenal! Utilizing time-stretching means you do not need to worry about what BPM your samples are in, as you can quickly and easily change their tempo to fit the current project.

This FL Studio tutorial will look at how you can stretch an audio sample from within the playlist view itself, which is the fastest way of achieving stretching. 

Then, we will look at how you can have more control over your time stretching by using options found within the sampler window for the sample. 

Using Stretch In Playlist View

To start with, let’s have a look at the fastest way in which you can stretch a sample in FL Studio. 

We will use the stretch feature found within the playlist view in this technique. Look for the button directly above the tracklist or use the Shift+M command to enable it. 

Once enabled, you will be able to click and drag on the end of an audio sample to stretch it in time. Try holding down Alt while clicking and dragging if you want more fine control over it. 

Using Time Stretch In The Sampler 

Now that you have learned the fastest method to stretch a sample in FL Studio, we will now look at the process that gives you the most control over the stretching. 

Double-click on the sample from within the playlist view to start with this method. Once done, you will be greeted with the sampler window for the particular sample. You will see a time-stretching section at the top right within this window. 

Stretch Modes

Within this section, you will be able to time-stretch the audio sample and change the algorithm by which it does so. 

For example, the ‘e2 Speech’ mode is designed for human voices. It attempts to keep them sounding natural even when being stretched. 

Similarly, ‘e2 Transient’ is designed with drums in mind. It is very good at preserving the initial transients punch when stretched.  

Another example would be the new ‘Time Stretch Pro’ mode, which features some of the best-sounding stretching FL Studio has ever had. 

Stretch Modes In The Sampler In FL Studio

Stretch pro also allows users to manually adjust the formant of the sample with a slider found just below the time stretch knob.

Getting used to what these different modes do is a great idea. You will then be able to apply them correctly when certain situations call for them. 

You will be OK with using the stretch or stretch pro modes for most general use cases. However, there will be times when you might want to use one of the more specific modes. 

Why Is Knowing How To Stretch a Sample so Important? 

Being able to stretch an audio clip is crucial as it allows music producers to quickly fit any new samples into their projects. Stretching is the most effective method of achieving this, as other methods can take longer and be more complicated. 

Is Knowing How To Stretch a Sample Essential? 

Knowing how to stretch a sample is essential for modern music production. Specific genres such as Hip Hop and Trap rely much more heavily on sampling. In these cases, stretching is of even higher importance as it will be used regularly on most tracks. 

Are There Any Other Ways to Stretch a Sample in FL Studio? 

In FL Studio, your best choice for stretching a sample is using the time stretch feature discussed in this article, which is made for that exact purpose. 

Other methods such as pitch shifting the sample around can lead to your sample being out of key, so it is best to stick to the time-stretching process. 

Do Other DAWs Let You Stretch Samples? 

Every popular digital audio workstation such as Ableton, Logic Pro, Studio One, and Pro Tools will feature a time stretching feature of some kind. For example, Ableton has one of the best time-stretching algorithms, which manages to sound very natural even when the sample has been stretched significantly. 

Stretching is a vital tool to have in your DAW, and only the best ones have good stretching algorithms. FL Studio has become much better in recent years, and its new time-stretch pro mode rivals Ableton’s. 

Why Does My Sample Sound Strange After Being Stretched? 

One reason why your sample may sound slightly strange after stretching is that you may have selected the wrong stretching mode. It is worthwhile to try out the different modes and see which one fits your specific context best. 

For example, suppose you are working with a vocal sample. In that case, you could try the vocal-specific stretching modes within FL Studio. 

Are There Any Negatives to Stretching a Sample? 

Sometimes you might find that your project and sample are at a different tempo. The stretching sounds terrible regardless of which mode you choose. These are the rare scenarios in which stretching may not be the best solution, and you may have to find another way around the problem. 

In this case, you could try replicating the sample or swapping out the audio file for another one if no other solution is found. 

Why Do Some Samples Sound Better Stretched than Others? 

Vocals can be notoriously difficult to stretch and keep sounding natural. Humans are very good at recognizing when a voice has been altered. That is why you will find vocal-specific stretching modes which try to make them sound as natural as possible when being stretched. 

That being said, stretching can depend on the source material you are using and the amount of stretching you are attempting to apply to that sample.

Final Words

You now know how to stretch a sample in FL Studio using two different methods. These techniques are helpful in different scenarios, so getting comfortable using both is an excellent idea for any music producer using Fruity Loops Studio. 

Take editing your samples to the next level with our guide on How To Chop Samples In FL Studio.

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