Suggestions for a solution for backing tracks + Midi clock

Hi, looking for some suggestions here.
In our band we used to use our analog rytm as the ‘drummer’, but it was very overkill considering that the only thing we did with it is just ‘hit play’ and sync with the keyboardist analog keys. at the end, we tried once to play with just an ipad with WAV files with all the rytm tracks (with some mastering threw in) and it works great. the only problem is that we lost the possibility of syncing with MIDI with the keys.
So, i’m thinking about how to fix it and i think that the only way is just using ableton live to throw the backing tracks and also receiving or sending the midi to the analog keys. i think that option could work, but i’m not 100% sure it’s the only option. so, the questions are:

  • did anybody tried syncing long audio files with midi out of live with elektron gear with success?
  • are there any options that do something like this with ipad?
  • any other gear that can do this? portability is a MUST (that’s why we stopped carrying the rytm in the first place, also, it is very expensive for the use we gave it).


Syncing AR/A4 to Live (or any other DAW) always suffers from clock-jitter (and other quirks like hangs, freezes or crashes during your live performance). Technically it is no problem at all - you can quantize any WAV/MP3 and send clock to every port you need.

IMO the better solution is an Octatrack (as master) with its two slaves AR and A4K. This is a tiny chain which is stable enough to avoid any timing problems (delays i.e.).

Another possibility is an external (Mulit-)clock (ERM i.e.) which is triggered by a plug-in which sends a synced audio signal to the clock itself. AR and A4K could be plugged as slaves. Sending notes or cc through the clock is another option in this setup.

With a camera connection kit you can hook your iPad to the keys via midi over USB.

There are backing track apps, I can’t think of the names but ask in the iPad musicians facebook group. Otherwise, novation blocs is great as is lp5 for playing stems. Probably work for tracks too.

Check app called link to midi or midi link sync. Not certain on the names but both are free. Link will simplify clock sync for you.

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