Native Instruments just launched its Stem Creator Tool, a free standalone app for Mac and PC that lets producers create their own Stems files for playing with compatible hardware and software. The Stem Creator Tool comes in a zip package that includes a quick-start guide to get you set on making your own Stems. While still at its beta stage, Native asserts that it’s stable .
Stems are basically multitrack music files in MP4 format that include five distinct tracks: four for individual instruments or groups of instruments (eg drums, bass, synth, vox), and one for the actual song, called a “Master File”. Together, these five tracks form a Stems file, and you can mix any of the four instrument tracks together during a DJ set using Stems-ready controllers like the Traktor Kontrol S8, D2, and F1.
Since Stems launched a few months ago, folks have been talking about whether or not the new file format will catch on, especially since it appears to be integral to Native Instruments’ DJ strategy moving forward. While it’s too early to tell whether it’ll become a standard format for DJs, we’ve already had a chance to review Stems with Stems-ready controllers and found the experience to be quite enjoyable and refreshing. The free availability of this tool should certainly help the supply of Stems files as the format gains a footing out there.
• One popular misconception about this tool is that it will be able to somehow magically “turn” and track into a “Stems” track. That’s not the case, of course: It is a tool for producers to “mix down” their own productions in a new way allowing DJs to DJ with four groups of parts from the track that together represent the complete track.
Creator Tool Tutorial
Check out the tutorial below to learn more about using the Stem Creator Tool.
• The Stem Creator Tool is now available at the Stems website.
Have you already tried DJing with Stems? Looking forward to creating your own Stems for live remixing? Let us know your thoughts below.