If you’re navigating through a set using a Launchpad or an APC-40, the obvious way to do it is using the buttons on the controller to move the colored rectangle up or down to the new location in the set.

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On the Launchpad, you hold down the Session button, while using the up/down buttons to move the rectangle a page at a time (that’s 8 scenes on the Launchpad, 5 if you’re using an APC). You can also move one scene at a time, and there’s another technique for jumping down by multiple pages.

For me, all of these methods are too slow and clunky if I want to rapidly scroll through my set and search for the material I want to jump to. That’s why I also map the scene navigator:

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The scene navigation controls are located in the Master track, and only appear when the MIDI Map or Key Map are showing. The up/down arrows can be used to move up or down one scene at a time, while the number box can be mapped to an encoder so you can navigate scenes by cranking a knob.

For me, the knob based navigation is an essential tool, allowing me to zip up and down through the set to find the new area I want to work in.  Then, I get a clip launched in this new area and take my time moving the colored rectangle into the new area of my set.

There’s a little more to know about the scene navigators, and a few things you can do to make navigating big sets a little easier. More on this shortly…