How to use FL Studio - Making music

This section covers the FL Studio desktop and basic workflow. In short, FL Studio allows you to load instruments and samples, play these live or manually enter the note data, record external sounds (from a microphone for example) and play the whole mix back through the 99 channel mixer (adding effects). The completed project can be saved in .flp or .zip formats and/or exported to .wav, .mp3 or .ogg audio.

This section covers:

We also recommend you watch the FL Studio | Getting Started YouTube playlist.

Main Windows

The FL Studio desktop is based on a number of windows, most of these are movable (with overlap), resizable, zoomable and switchable so if a window isn't visible open it using the Shortcut toolbar (or the function keys as noted in brackets). The main windows involved in FL Studio music creation are - Channels ( F6), Piano roll ( F7). Mixer ( F9) and Playlist ( F5). The Browser ( F8) is used to access audio files & presets from within FL Studio (see the File setting options for adding directories on your PC to the Browser). NOTE: If you ever need to reset the position of all windows to their default use (Ctrl + Shift + H)


Once you have mastered the FL Studio interface, the next step is to learn the procedure for creating music - the FL Studio 'workflow'. The five main activities involved are outlined below:

1. Instruments

2. Composing & sequencing

3. Arranging & editing

4. Mixing

5. Exporting audio

That's it, go make some organized noise!