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No part of this book may be reproduced in any form or by any electronic or mechanical means, including information storage and retrieval systems, without written permission from the publisher, except by a reviewer who may quote passages in a review. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. The media provided with this book and accompanying course material is to be used only to complete the exercises contained herein or for other valid educational purposes.

No rights are granted to use the media in any commercial or noncommercial production. All product features and specifications are subject to change without notice. Ableton Live Software Instruments About the Authors Acknowledgments The authors would like to extend special thanks to the following individuals who have provided support, feedback, technical information, editorial input, and other contributions for this version of the book: Mark Anderson, John Cerullo, Andy Cook, Frank D.

Eric would like to thank his wife and children for their support and understanding: Amanda Goodroe, Thom, and Freddie. Within this program, you have the opportunity to pursue certification in Ableton Live and other digital media applications.

The material in this course book will help you to join their ranks, unleashing the power and productivity of your own Ableton Live system. This book represents the first step on a journey toward mastering Ableton Live software.

The information, exercises, and projects you will find here are written for Ableton Live systems running version However, the vast majority of the book applies equally to earlier software versions, including Ableton Live 9.

Whether you are interested only in self-study or you would like to pursue formal training through a NextPoint Training Certification Partner, this book will develop your core skills and introduce you to the awe-inspiring power of Ableton Live.

About This Book This book provides a course outline for the audio enthusiast with relatively little Ableton Live experience. This text and the associated Ableton Live instructor-led training course were developed by NextPoint Training, Inc.

While this course book can be completed through self-study, we recommend the hands-on experience available through an instructor-led class with an NPT Certification Partner. Ableton Live 10 Edition This edition of the Ableton Live course has been written to address recent software changes up through the Ableton Live The material is focused on the principles that you need to understand to complete an Ableton Live project, from initial setup to final export.

Whether your project involves recording audio, preparing MIDI sequences for virtual instruments, or editing and mixing audio files, Ableton Live will teach you the steps required to succeed. The Download Media This book makes use of media files for the included exercises and the final project. The media files can be accessed by visiting www. From there, you can download the Media Files folder for this course. Instructions for downloading the media files are provided with the exercises and final project, as needed.

The downloadable Media Files folder includes three subfolders for use with this book. These are provided primarily for reference purposes. Sample files 4 though 9 can also be used as starting points for subsequent work in Exercises 5 through 10, as needed. Exercise Media The 02 Exercise Media folder provides the audio and MIDI files you will import to complete the work in Exercises 5 through 10, following the instructions included in this book.

Files for the Final Project The 03 Final Project Media folder provides content for the final project that you will complete in the second part of this book. This folder includes a Set file and associated media required to complete the project, following the stepby-step instructions in the Final Project section of the book. Course Prerequisites Most Ableton Live enthusiasts today have at least a passing familiarity with operating a computer.

If you consider yourself a computer novice, however, you should review some basics before beginning this course. Course Organization and Sequence This course has been designed to familiarize you with the practices and processes you will use to complete a recording, editing, and mixing project.

Chapters and Exercises The first part of the book includes ten primary chapters and ten associated short exercises. The subsequent chapters present specific processes and techniques, in the general order that you will use them to complete a project —from creating a new Set, to recording and editing, and on through to mixing and completing a final export. Each of the chapters is followed by a brief exercise that gives you practice applying what you have learned.

Final Project The second part of this book is the final project. This section includes instructions for completing an unfinished project included in the Media Files folder.

The project in this section can be completed at any point as you progress through the ten primary chapters. Appendices This edition of the book includes two appendices. By completing the coursework in this text, you are taking an important step toward certification. And consider this: Having a certification from NextPoint Training just might help you land that next gig, find others with similar skills and interests, or even obtain your dream job in the industry.

Visit NextPointTraining. The Certified Professional program prepares individuals to operate an Ableton Live system in an independent production environment. This certification requires successful completion of the Ableton Live instructor-led course at an NPT Certification Partner school and a passing score on the associated Ableton Live certification exam. Other Courses Offered in the Digital Media Production Program NextPoint Training offers several additional certification courses to help you become proficient using a wide range of audio production tools.

It offers an introduction to digital audio for students aspiring to work in music or video production, audio engineering, broadcast, or new media. The goal of this course is to help individuals start working effectively on their own projects in Cubase Artist or Cubase Pro software.

NextPoint Training Course Configuration NextPoint Training uses a version—specific approach to course design, enabling students and educators to access classes based on the products and software versions that meet their particular needs and training environments. The Ableton Live certification path is described above. Course components are designed to be completed as individual product-focused classes; however, the same content may be made available through different class configurations.

How Can I Learn More? Additional resources are available to help you explore the topics covered in this book, review key points in each chapter, and test your knowledge of the material.

This module is particularly useful to help students prepare for the Ableton Live Certified Professional exam. Conventions and Symbols Used in This Book Following are some of the conventions and symbols used in this book, and throughout the books in the NextPoint Training Series. Keyboard Shortcuts and Modifiers Menu choices and keyboard commands are typically capitalized and written in bold text. Brackets [ ] are used to indicate key presses on the numeric keypad. Command-click Hold down the Command key and click the mouse Mac button.

Right-click Click with the right mouse button. Press [1] Press 1 on the numeric keypad. Icons The following icons are used in this book to call attention to tips, shortcuts, listening suggestions, warnings, and reference sources. Tips provide helpful hints and suggestions, background information, or details on related operations or concepts.

Shortcuts provide useful keyboard, mouse, or modifier-based shortcuts that can help you work more efficiently. Warnings caution you against conditions that may affect audio playback, impact system performance, alter data files, or interrupt hardware connections. Cross-References alert you to another section, book, or resource that provides additional information on the current topic.

Online References provide links to online resources and downloads related to the current topic. You will learn about the evolution of Ableton Live and get an introduction to the characteristics of analog and digital audio.

You will also get an overview of the latest developments in Ableton Live 10 software and learn about the different Ableton Live configurations available today. Sign up for free at ElementsED. The Ableton Live Digital Audio Workstation Ableton Live is one of the most widely used applications for music production in the world today, integrating capabilities in audio and MIDI recording, editing, mixing, and mastering, as well as support for desktop video.

As such, Ableton Live empowers a wide range of producers—from hobbyist to professional—to easily achieve all of their production tasks within an intuitive yet powerful environment.

At its core, Ableton Live is a multi-track software-based music production system. With the ability to incorporate QuickTime video files, Ableton Live has also established itself as viable option for composing for visual media such as film and television. Audio Processing Ableton Live works with audio that is stored electronically in digital format. The software records audio performances and saves them as files on a storage drive. Like a digital photograph that is comprised of a collection of discrete pixels, the audio files created by Ableton Live are made up of a collection of discrete samples.

Ableton Live supports audio formats with resolutions up to bit floating point and sample rates up to kHz. Just as you can use an image editor to modify, enhance, and otherwise alter your digital photographs in creative ways, you can use Ableton Live to edit your digital audio. Working in the digital realm makes it easy to copy, paste, move, delete, process, and otherwise manipulate parts of your recordings.

Ableton Live lets you resize and split waveforms, convert audio data to MIDI data, change the timing and feel of performances, rearrange song sections, and much, much more. MIDI recordings differ from their digital audio counterparts in that they capture performance event data rather than sound samples. Furthermore, some editions of Ableton Live come bundled with several great-sounding virtual instrument plug-ins.

Mixing and Automation Beyond recording, editing, and arranging, Ableton Live offers a softwarebased mixing environment that provides control over signal routing, effects processing, signal levels, panning, and more.

The mixing operations in Ableton Live can be automated and stored with your Set file, enabling you to recall, edit, and refine your mixes over time. When you save an Ableton Live Set, all routing, automation, mixing, and effects settings are stored in their present state and will recall in that state whenever the Set is reopened. Additionally, Ableton Live can be combined with hardware from third-party manufacturers in various configurations to provide multiple channels of simultaneous input and output for your projects.

Large Sets including dozens of simultaneous audio and MIDI tracks can be managed without audio degradation. Ableton Live systems can range from very simple to extremely advanced and powerful. Audio for Video Post-Production Ableton Live also provides a powerful audio platform for video postproduction tasks.

When completed, your finished movie file can be exported with the final audio mix embedded. Ableton Live History and Evolution In the s, two musicians named Gerhard Behles and Robert Henke spent much of their time performing minimal techno around Berlin under the moniker Monolake. Out of necessity, the two developed custom performance software using the Max music programming language to trigger audio loops and samples in their shows.

By the end of the s, Behles and Henke made the decision to convert their messy Max code into a streamlined commercial application that could be sold to other musicians. After several years of development, the first version of Ableton Live was released in The software was an immediate success thanks to its intuitive interface and innovative sample manipulation and playback features.

Over the years since, Ableton has released a steady stream of updates that have each improved the functionality of Ableton Live. Ableton Live 5 introduced track freeze and MP3 support. Ableton Live 6 introduced QuickTime video support and allowed users to produce music for film and video from within Live for the first time.

In , the two companies released Max for Live software, which made it possible to use Max patches directly inside of Ableton Live. The result was the APC40, which closely approximated the Ableton Live software interface in an intuitive hardware format.

The APC functionality included the ability to launch clips and scenes and adjust mixer and device settings from a hardware controller. In , Ableton again teamed up with Akai Professional to create the Push hardware instrument.

Push took the APC concept to the next level and offered access to almost every aspect of Ableton Live from the controller, including note entry, step sequencing, and much more.

In , Ableton designed and built Push 2 completely in-house. Push 2 expanded on the capabilities of the original Push by adding a larger display and higher quality pads. Figure 1. The remainder of this chapter focuses on these topics. Audio Basics: Waveform, Frequency, and Amplitude To work effectively with sound, it is helpful to understand what sound is and what gives a sound its character. When we hear a sound, what we actually experience is a variation in the air pressure around us.

This variation results from vibrations in material objects—whether a knock on a tabletop, a running car engine, or a plucked guitar string. When a vibrating object moves through a back-and-forth motion, the variation in air pressure that it produces becomes an auditory event. If the object is vibrating at a frequency that falls within the range of human hearing, we perceive the varying air pressure as a sound.

The nature of the sound we hear is determined by the waveform, frequency, and amplitude of the vibration. As a vibrating object moves through its back-and-forth motions, its path is not smooth and continuous. Each object vibrates differently; the waveform of the vibration gives the sound its unique character and tone. Frequency The frequency of the sound pressure variations that reaches our ears creates our perception of the pitch of the sound.

These two terms are synonymous—15, CPS is the same as 15, Hz. Multiples of 1, Hz are often denoted as kilohertz kHz. Therefore, 15, Hz is also written as 15 kHz. As the frequency of vibration increases, the pitch of the sound goes up— numerically higher frequencies produce higher pitches, while numerically lower frequencies produce lower pitches.

Each time the frequency doubles, the pitch rises by one octave. By way of example, the open A string on a guitar vibrates at Hz in standard tuning. Playing the A note on the 12th fret produces vibrations at Hz one octave higher.

The range of human hearing is between 20 and 20, cycles per second, or stated another way, from 20 Hz to 20 kHz. Amplitude The intensity or amplitude of the sound pressure variations that reaches our ears creates our perception of the loudness of the sound. We measure amplitude in decibels dB. The decibel is a logarithmic unit that is used to describe a ratio of sound pressure; as such, it does not have a linear relation to our perception of loudness. As the amplitude of pressure variations increases, the sound becomes louder.

An increase of approximately 10 dB is required to produce a perceived doubling of loudness. By way of example, the amplitude of ordinary conversation is around 60 dB. Increasing the amplitude to 70 dB would essentially double the loudness; increasing amplitude to 80 dB would double it again, quadrupling the original loudness.

Recording and Playing Back Analog Audio The task of a recording microphone is to respond to changes in air pressure— the waveforms, frequencies, and amplitudes that make up a sound—and translate them into an electronic output that can be captured or recorded.

A microphone functions as a transducer, converting acoustic energy into an electrical current. The continuous electrical signal produced by a microphone is an alternating current with a waveform, frequency, and amplitude that directly corresponds to, or is analogous to, the original acoustic information. This electrical signal is thus considered to represent analog audio. If this continuous analog signal is captured on traditional recording media, such as magnetic tape, it can be played back by directly translating the electrical waveform, frequency, and amplitude back into analogous variations in air pressure through the means of an amplifier and a loudspeaker.

Converting Audio to Digital Format Before you can record or edit with Ableton Live, the analog audio electrical signal relayed by a microphone, guitar pickup, or other device must be translated into digital numeric information binary data. This conversion is necessary so that the signal can be stored, read, and subsequently manipulated by a computer.

The Importance of Sample Rate Sampling is the process of taking discrete measurements of an electrical signal at various moments in time. Each measurement, or sample, is a digital representation of the signal voltage at that instant. Played back in succession, these samples approximate the original signal, much like a series of photographs played back in succession approximates movement in a film or video.

The sample rate is the frequency with which these digital measurements are collected. Nyquist Theorem A fundamental law of analog-to-digital conversion, commonly referred to as the Nyquist Theorem, drives the sample rate required for digital audio. If the sample rate is any lower, the system will read the incoming frequencies inaccurately and produce the wrong tones. In concept, this is much like the effect seen in early motion pictures, where a wagon wheel will appear to rotate backward due to the low frame rates being used.

In digital audio, the false tones produced by this type of frequency distortion are known as aliastones. Minimum Sample Rate Because the range of human hearing is generally accepted to be 20 Hz to 20 kHz, the Nyquist Theorem tells us that a sampling rate of at least 40 kHz twice the upper range of human hearing is required to capture fullfrequency audio. Most professional digital recording devices today offer sample rates of at least The digital information on an audio CD is stored at a standard sample rate of The Importance of Bit Depth Computers use binary digits called bits 0s or 1s to represent each sample measurement that is collected.

The number of bits used for each sample is referred to as the binary word length, or bit depth. The more binary digits included in the bit depth, the greater the accuracy of each sample measurement. The relative amplitude or loudness of each sample is quantized, or rounded to the closest available whole-number value within the word length. The range of numeric values available for each sample at a given bit depth is equal to 2 to the nth power 2n , where n is the number of bits in the binary word.

By way of example, consider a 4-bit binary word. This word length can represent only 16 different amplitude levels As such, a 4-bit binary word would record audio using only 16 discrete amplitude levels.

By contrast, a bit digital word could represent 65, discrete amplitude levels , creating a much more continuous dynamic response. A bit digital word could define more than 16 million discrete amplitude levels Larger binary words are able to quantify variations in amplitude with much greater accuracy.

Therefore, a bit audio file will always more accurately reflect the dynamic range of the original sound than its bit counterpart. Thirty-two-bit floating-point files represent discrete amplitude levels in the same way as bit files.

The 8 additional bits provide exponent biasing and allow for headroom above fullscale bit audio. By multiplying the word size by six, you can estimate the useful dynamic range of a fixed-point system.

In theoretical terms, the dynamic range or signal-toquantization noise ratio increases by approximately 6 dB for each bit added to the binary word length. Minimum Bit Depth The useful dynamic range of speech and music is generally considered to be from 40 to dB. This would require at least 11 bits in the binary word. To provide an adequate dynamic range to minimize the impact of the noise floor at the low end of the spectrum, and to allow a healthy amount of headroom at the high end, Ableton Live uses a minimum word length of 16 bits.

Greater bit depths can be used to increase precision and accommodate a wider dynamic range. Sample Rate, Bit Depth, and File Size A consequence of files with higher sample rates and greater bit depths is the higher storage capacity required to record them. Higher sample rates increase the storage requirement. At 96 kHz, each minute of bit mono audio requires about 11 MB of storage space.

Increasing the bit depth has the same effect. Stereo files require twice as much storage space as mono files, since each file includes two channels of audio left and right. The process of converting from digital to analog and back to digital can introduce distortion and degrade the original signal.

Digital Transfers To prevent audio degradation, unnecessary conversions should be avoided. Keeping audio information in the digital domain while transferring between machines or devices will retain its sonic integrity with no discernible signal degradation.

Digital Audio Connections On the rear panel of many audio interfaces are connections for accomplishing digital transfers. Ableton Live Configurations The requirements for your digital audio recording projects will determine the edition of Ableton Live that you will need to use.

This book focuses on Ableton Live Standard software features. All Ableton Live editions are available for both Mac and Windows operating systems. Ableton Live Intro vs. Ableton Live Standard vs. Ableton Live Suite Throughout this book, we use the term to refer generically to all available software Ableton Live editions and the terms, and, to to refer Intro Ableton Live Ableton Live Suite Ableton Live Standard specifice ditions of Ableton Live software, where needed for differentiation.

Audio Interface Options An audio interface provides the analog-to-digital conversion required for recording to Ableton Live, as well as the digital-to-analog conversion required for playback from Ableton Live to your analog speakers or headphones. You should consider a mid-range interface if you need more than just a couple of channels of input and output.

These interfaces offer as many as 64 channels of input and output to accommodate the largest recording configurations. Most Ableton Live controls, tools, procedures, and menus are similar on both systems. There are, however, some differences in keyboard commands and file-naming conventions that can impact your work when moving between different platforms.

Keyboard Commands Many keyboard commands in Ableton Live use modifier keys, which are keys pressed in combination with other keys or with a mouse action. Modifiers and other equivalent keys can have different names on each platform. Table 1. File Name Extensions For cross-platform compatibility, all Ableton Live files in a project must have a three-letter file extension added to the file name. Ableton Live Set files use the. WAV files have the. Name and describe four types of production tasks that Ableton Live can be used for.

What is the frequency range of human hearing? What does the frequency of a sound wave affect in terms of how we perceive the sound? How is frequency measured? What does the amplitude of the sound wave affect?

How is amplitude measured? How does the sample rate of a system relate to the frequency of audio it can capture? What is the name of the law that specifies the relationship between sample rate and audio frequency? How does the bit depth of a system relate to the dynamic range of audio it can capture?

How can you estimate the dynamic range of a system? What are some common digital connections available on audio interfaces?

What type of connector jack does each use? Name some audio interfaces that are available for use with Ableton Live. To review additional material from this chapter and prepare for certification, see the Ableton Live Study Guide module available through the Elements ED online learning platform at ElementsED.

Exercise 1 Selecting Your Audio Production Gear Activity In this exercise, you will define your audio production needs and select components for a home studio based around Ableton Live software. By balancing your wants and needs against a defined budget, you will be able to determine which hardware and software options make sense for you. Duration This exercise should take approximately 10 minutes to complete. This budget should be sufficient to cover all aspects of your initial needs for basic audio production work.

Keep in mind that you can add to your basic setup over time to increase your capabilities. Use the table below to outline your basic requirements and to serve as a guide when you begin shopping for options. Place an X in the appropriate column for your expected needs in each row.

Do not include MIDI gear in this table, as we will address that separately. This exercise assumes that you own a compatible computer with built-in speakers for playback. Do not include a host computer in this table. Identifying Prices Your next step is to begin identifying prices for equipment that will meet your needs. Using the requirements you identified above as a guide, do some Internet research at an online music retailer of your choice to identify appropriate options for each of the items listed in the table below.

If you find that your budget is not sufficient to cover the total cost, you will need to determine which purchase items you can postpone or consider bundle options. On the other hand, if you have money left over in your budget, you can consider upgrade options.

It reviews the Ableton Live software components and installers, as well as the file structure used for Ableton Live Sets. It also introduces the basic user interface for the software and reviews menu operations.

The second half of this lesson provides an overview of the main views in Ableton Live. This chapter presents an overview of basic Ableton Live operations and functions. You will be introduced to the filing structure that Ableton Live uses for its Sets and backups, the steps required to start up an Ableton Live system, and the primary elements of the main Ableton Live views.

Target Systems Although most of the concepts discussed in this book are applicable to all Ableton Live systems, the book is specifically written for Ableton Live While any Ableton Live system can be used with this book, certain menus, commands, and functions may differ from one configuration to another.

Additionally, Ableton Live Suite users will have access to various features and devices that may not represented in this book. Because many users will be new to Ableton Live 10, new features introduced in Ableton Live 10 are generally identified as such in the text.

All descriptions are based on the user interface and functionality in Ableton Live If you purchased a boxed version of Ableton Live or Push, your registration code will be included in the box. If you purchased a digital download of Ableton Live from a reseller, your registration code can be found in your confirmation email. If you purchased Live through Ableton. Go to Ableton. You will be taken directly to the product registration page shown in Figure 2.

Figure 2. The Account page will appear, displaying a Licenses pop-up near the top. Software Installation and Operation Ableton uses separate installers for each version and edition of Ableton Live. Each Ableton Live installer also installs a variety of included software devices providing additional functionality. Ableton uses the term version to differentiate numbered versions of the software such as Live 9 or Live Ableton uses the term edition to differentiate between the different flavors of Live, such as Intro, Standard, and Suite.

To access the installers for Ableton Live, do the following: 1. The Account page will appear. Generally, the most recent Ableton Live installer is shown by default. If necessary, you can click on the pop-up menu next to Licenses and choose an alternate version of Ableton Live. Included Devices and Packs Devices are special-purpose software components that provide additional signal processing and other functionality within Ableton Live.

Ableton devices come in three varieties: instruments, audio effects, and MIDI effects. Other digital audio workstation software such as Pro Tools, Logic Pro X, and Cubase use the term plug-in for the processors used on a track. Ableton uses the term device to describe the built-in processors included with Live, and the term plug-in to describe optional third-party processors in VST or AU format.

Ableton Live Intro comes with a small set of Ableton devices. Ableton Live Standard adds an instrument and a variety of audio effects. While Live Intro offers just the essentials, more than 46 audio effects are included in Ableton Suite! Ableton MIDI effects devices are also quite varied and include arpeggiation, chord creation, velocity and pitch manipulation, and several more.

Live Intro offers a basic set of instruments, including percussion devices Drum Rack and Impulse , a basic sampler Simpler , and a device for organizing and controlling instruments Instrument Rack. Live Standard offers the same set and adds the External Instrument device that can be used to integrate hardware synthesizers or drum machines into your setup. In addition to those mentioned above, this set includes an analog synth Analog , an FM and additive synth Operator , a wavetable synth Wavetable , a full-featured sampler Sampler , and many more.

To access the installers for Ableton Live packs, do the following: 1. Scroll down past the Ableton Live application installers until you see Packs. Once the pack has downloaded, double-click on the installer. The Ableton Live application will automatically install the pack on your computer. Installing Packs in the Ableton Live Application Users running Ableton Live 10 and later have the ability to download and install packs directly from inside of the Ableton Live application.

To download and install packs inside the Ableton Live application: 1. Set Show Downloadable Packs to On by clicking on the toggle display. Close the Preferences window.

The Browser is discussed in detail in Chapter 5 of this book. The display will switch to show the packs that are available to download and install. Click the triangle next to Available Packs at the top of the content pane the NAME column to see the packs that are available in your account.

See Figure 2. Click the download arrow next to the desired pack. The pack installer will begin downloading to your computer. Each edition offers a different feature set, with the Intro edition offering a limited feature set, the Standard edition offering the full set of key features but a limited number of devices, and the Suite edition adding the full collection of Ableton devices, including Max for Live.

The smaller collection of devices in Intro can also be a limiting factor, but many users will opt to purchase third-party plug-ins from manufacturers such as Native Instruments and others, so they may not require the Ableton devices.

Note that Ableton Live Intro does support video import and export. The major difference here is the number of included devices and access to Max for Live. The impact these additional features will have on your personal production workflow will depend on your collection of third-party plug-ins.

Be sure to consider your long-term goals before committing to a particular edition of Ableton Live. Table 2. But before you create your first Ableton Live document, or Set, it is helpful to understand how the software interacts with the various files that are related to the Set.

Rather than storing a Set as a single file, Ableton Live stores various Set components separately and maintains a roadmap to the files it uses in a Set file. All of the files used for a project are grouped together in a project folder.

Additional information on creating Ableton Live Sets is provided in Chapter 4. File Organization When you create an Ableton Live Set, the system sets up a standard hierarchy for the Set and its associated files by automatically creating a top-level project folder. This folder contains the Ableton Live Set file filename.

When you record, convert, import, or edit material, specific files will appear in each of these subfolders. Project Components The types of files that Ableton Live generates and stores in each folder in the hierarchy are described in the following sections. Ableton Live creates many of these files automatically as you work on a project, although some are generated by export operations only.

Ableton Live creates this file along with various subfolders inside a project folder of the same name. Set files created in Ableton Live are recognizable by their. The Set file contains a map of all the tracks, audio files, video files, settings, and edits associated with your project. You can easily copy and rename Set documents, allowing you to save alternate versions of a project without changing the source audio.

This folder houses a configuration file that contains important project information and uses a. You will not need to modify this file when working with Ableton Live. This folder will contain the 10 most recent prior saves of the Set.

Backups are enabled in Ableton Live by default. There is no way to disable this feature or change the frequency or number of backups. Samples Folder The Samples folder is where imported and recorded audio clips are saved while working with Ableton Live. You may not see the Samples folder when you first create a new Set. This folder is created only when you record audio or you collect files for export.

When you record audio into an unsaved Ableton Live Set, each recording is initially stored in a Temp Project folder. Once the Set is saved, the files are moved from the temporary location to a folder inside the Samples folder titled Recorded. When transferring projects between systems, be sure to copy over the entire top-level project folder in order to include all associated audio files and other material needed for the project. When you import audio or video files into Ableton Live, the imported files are not automatically copied to the Samples folder.

This makes it easy to archive the project and open it again at a later date. Exported MIDI files can be recognized by their. Starting Ableton Live Because Ableton Live systems are often comprised of both hardware and software, preparing your system for use might involve more than simply turning on your computer and launching the Ableton Live application. The larger the system, the more important it becomes to follow a specific startup sequence.

Starting components out of sequence could cause a component to not be recognized, prevent the software from launching, or cause unexpected behavior. The recommended sequence for starting any computer—based audio system is as follows: 1. Start with all your equipment including your computer powered off. Turn on any external hard drives that require external power and wait about 10 seconds for them to spin up to speed. Turn on your audio interface if not bus powered. Wait at least 15 seconds for the audio interface to initialize.

Start your computer and launch Ableton Live. Turn on your audio monitoring system, if applicable. Many audio interfaces get their power from the computer via a USB port or other connection ; these interfaces do not need to be powered up in advance.

When you first launch Ableton Live, the application will prompt you for authorization. Authorizing Live Ableton Live software uses copy protection, as do many other software products and plug-ins. The Ableton Live license is intended for a single user. However, Ableton permit you to install the Live application on up to two computers belonging to the registered user. The first time you launch Ableton Live, an authorization dialog box will appear Figure 2. To authorize Ableton Live with Ableton.

COM from the authorization dialog box; your computer will automatically open a browser and take you to the Ableton website. Log into your Ableton. This may take few seconds, during which time you will see a progress bar near the bottom of the authorization dialog box. Once the authorization is complete, you will get a confirmation message. Click OK to begin using Ableton Live! To authorize Ableton Live offline, do the following: 1.

The offline authorization dialog box will appear. Note the hardware code or save it to a text file by clicking the SAVE button.

On a computer with Internet access, log into your Ableton. This will take you to the Authorize Offline page. Transfer the. Double-click the. Accessing Connected Audio Devices When Ableton Live launches, it will generally be configured to use the default audio device on your computer. If no supported audio device is found, Ableton Live will launch with the audio engine turned off. Sample Rate Settings The Sample Rate setting will affect the quality of the audio that is going into or out of your system through a connected audio interface.

The Sample Rate setting will also determine the sample rate of audio files that result from recording on an audio track. A higher sample rate requires more processing power than a lower sample rate, and will reduce the number of tracks and plug-ins you can run on a particular computer.

For this reason, many producers prefer to work with sample rates of 44, and 48, Latency Settings The Buffer Size setting in the Audio tab of the Preferences dialog box controls the size of the hardware buffer.

This buffer handles processing tasks such as plug-in processing. As a general rule, the Buffer Size should be set as low as your project will allow, in order to minimize latency when monitoring an active input. You may need to change the setting later as your project becomes more complex.

Reducing Latency on Tracks with an Active Input Ableton Live offers an additional option for reducing latency on tracks with an active input.

However these tracks may be out of sync with other tracks in your set, such as Return tracks. Enabling this setting turns off delay compensation for inputmonitored tracks. Modifying Performance Settings Adjustments to the Sample Rate and Latency settings can be made in the in the Audio tab of the Preferences window, as follows: 1. Click OK. The Ableton Live Menu Structure Before beginning to work on an Ableton Live Set, you should have some basic familiarity with the software interface, including the menu structure and views.

Among the first things you see upon launching Ableton Live is the menu system across the top of the screen. Learning how the menus are organized will save you a lot of time when you are trying to find a specific Ableton Live function. Following is a brief description of each menu. File Menu File menu commands let you create and maintain Ableton Live Sets and perform other file-based commands. The File menu includes options for opening, creating, and saving Sets; exporting audio, video, and MIDI; installing packs; and managing files.

Edit Menu Edit menu commands allow you to edit and manipulate the media in your current selection. The Edit menu includes options for cutting, copying, and pasting; duplicating, deleting, and renaming; splitting, consolidating, freezing, and quantizing; and performing similar operations. Create Menu Create menu commands generally result in the creation of new tracks in Ableton Live. View Menu View menu commands affect the display within Ableton Live windows and tracks.

Most View menu commands show or hide parts of the main Ableton Live windows. Selecting a command will display a component part of a window, and deselecting the command will hide it.

Zoom commands are also included in the View menu. From this menu, you can define MIDI and key mapping, enable delay compensation, adjust launch quantization, change the solo mode, set the time ruler format, and make other similar choices. The Options menu displays independent functions that toggle on or off. Menu items with a check mark next to them are currently on, or enabled; items without a check mark are off, or disabled. You can also check for Ableton Live updates from this menu.

When the first version of Ableton Live was released in , it was the Session View that caught the attention of music producers around the world. There was nothing else like it! The Session View provides a number of controls grouped into sections. Several of these sections, such as the Clips Slots section and the Scenes section, are unique to the Session View. Scenes are typically used to navigate through sections of a single song verse, chorus, etc.

Audio Input and Output selectors are used to route input and output signals from your audio interface for recording or playback. The Monitor controls determine whether you will hear the live track input or playback of an existing clip on a given track. The Monitor controls can generally be left on the AUTO setting, which will automatically switch from monitoring live input when a track is recording or record-armed in stop to monitoring clip playback when the track is in play.

In the Mixer section, tracks appear as mixer strips also called channel strips. Each track displayed in the Mixer section has controls for panning and volume. The Track Activator, Solo, and Arm Recording buttons can be used for mute, solo, and record arm functions, respectively, during record and playback. The Volume slider in the Mixer Section does not affect the input gain record level of a signal being recorded. The signal level must be set appropriately at the source or adjusted using a preamp or gain-equipped audio interface.

These are discussed in more detail in later chapters. Arrangement View The Arrangement View provides a timeline display of audio, MIDI data, video, and mixer automation for recording, editing, and arranging tracks.

The Browser The Browser can be displayed on the left—hand side of the main window. It can be accessed when either the Session View or Arrangement View is active. The Browser is also used to access and install Ableton Packs in Ableton Live 10 or later , to browse through user settings and current project files, and to quickly access folders located anywhere on your computer.

The Browser display is divided into two sections, with the sidebar on the left and the content pane on the right. You can resize the sections by dragging the divider line horizontally. The Clip View also features several property boxes that can be used to modify various aspects of a clip.

When active, the Info View appears at the far left side of the Detail View. The Info View provides a brief description of any element that you position the mouse over within the Ableton Live user interface. These controls cover a wide range including tempo, time signature, and quantization settings; transport and looping controls; edit settings; keyboard and MIDI mapping; and performance indicators.

It appears as a miniature representation of all of the clips that are currently on tracks in the Arrangement View. You can click in the Overview to quickly navigate to a new position in the Set.

You can also click and drag within the Overview to change the horizontal or vertical zoom level. This ruler appears above the Track Display. It will display bar numbers when zoomed out, but will also show beats and sub-beats as you zoom in.

The Scrub Area sits just below the beat-time ruler and performs a number of functions. You can click in the Scrub Area to start playback from a specific location. You can also set loop start and end points by dragging the left or right side of the loop brace or by entering values into the Loop Start and Loop Length fields in the Control Bar. In addition, you can right-click in the Scrub Area to insert a time signature change or to add a Locator.

The Time Ruler is a secondary ruler that appears at the bottom of the Arrangement View. The user can configure this ruler to show Time minutes:seconds , or film and video frame positions at a variety of frame rates, including 24 fps film , 25 fps PAL , and This can be helpful when working with imported video clips.

Adjusting the Display of Views and Sections Ableton Live lets you customize the display of the windows to accommodate your needs at any given point in your project. Either the Session View or Arrangement View must be visible at all times. These include the Browser display and the Detail View section. To adjust the width or height of a view, follow these steps: 1.

Position the mouse over the view separator where the cursor changes into a double-headed arrow. Click and drag on the view separator to adjust its position as needed. What are some of the differences between Ableton Live editions? Which editions offer support for video playback? Name some of the folders and files that Ableton Live creates as part of the project hierarchy. Where is the Live Set file. Where are imported and recorded audio files stored in the project hierarchy? Which component should you turn on first when powering up an Ableton Live system?

Which component should you turn on last? What type of processing does the Buffer Size preference affect? What kinds of commands can be found under the Ableton Live Create menu?

What kinds of commands can be found under the Ableton Live Options menu? Exercise 2 Identifying Ableton Live Views Activity In this exercise worksheet, you will identify the main views in Ableton Live and their component sections. The information referenced in these questions is covered in Chapter 2. Be sure to use the terminology referenced in Chapter 2 as you complete this exercise.

Questions 1 through 4 refer to Figure 2. Questions 5 through 10 refer to Figure 2. This chapter provides an overview of the playback functions, editing controls, display options, and rulers available in the Ableton Live Arrangement View. These primary controls are used day-in and day-out in Ableton Live for recording, playback, and basic editing of audio and MIDI material. Establishing some familiarity with the available tools, operational modes, and performance control functions early on will help you in all aspects of the work you do in Ableton Live.

Playback in Arrangement View When you first create an Ableton Live set, the Play function in the Control Bar will serve to activate playback of the state stored in the Arrangement View. However, if you activate playback of a Clip Slot or Scene in Session View for the Set, the Play function will generally switch to activate playback of the current state of the Session View instead. This may cause the media on tracks in the Arrangement View to appear dimmed grayed out and to not play back as expected.

This button is available in both the Session View and the Arrangement View. Figure 3. You can also press function key F10 to activate the Back to Arrangement function for the Transport. Clip Editing in Arrangement View Unlike most other audio applications that require users to change tools to perform clip-editing tasks, Ableton Live has a single tool that is used for clip editing.

This unified tool provides instant access for selecting, moving, and resizing clips. This tool can also be used to create fade-ins, fade-outs, and crossfades. Selecting a Clip Ableton Live allows you to select an entire clip or just a portion of a clip without changing tools.

Make a time selection by clicking and dragging forwards or backwards in the lower half of the clip. Release the mouse button. Click in the upper half of the clip within the existing time selection and, without releasing the mouse button, drag the selected portion of the clip to the left or right. The selected audio will be removed from the original clip, creating a new, independent clip. Clip movement in the Arrangement View may be constrained, depending on the current grid setting.

Resizing a Clip Ableton Live offers a clip—resizing feature that can be used to adjust the clip boundaries to hide or expose underlying material. This feature can be used on audio, MIDI, and video clips. Like all clip editing in Ableton Live, resizing a clip is nondestructive, meaning it will leave the underlying source media file unchanged.

The Loop switch for a clip is available in the Sample box in Clip View, as discussed in Chapters 4 and 9 of this book. Creating Fades A fade is a steady volume ramp that you create on a clip boundary. Fades have many different applications, from smoothing out an edit, to creating seamless clip overlaps, to building volume fade-ins and fade-outs for music and sound effects.

This section covers the process of creating simple fade-ins, fades-outs, and crossfades. When you hover the cursor over an audio clip, fade controls will appear as handles in all four corners of the clip. These handles can be used to create a fade in, fade out, or crossfade. Fade handles may not appear at small track heights. As an alternative, you can also apply a fade based on an existing selection.

Applying Fades using Fade Handles A quick way to apply fades is to use the fade handles that appear in the upper corners of audio clips. Use the fade handle at the start of the clip to create a fade-in; use the fade handle at the end of the clip to create a fade-out. To create a fade from a selection, do the following: 1.

Select across the beginning or ending of a clip. The corresponding fade-in or fade-out will be created and will appear at the head or tail of the clip.

Applying Crossfades Ableton Live allows you to create crossfades between any two adjacent audio clips that have sufficient underlying audio in their parent audio files. Crossfading is essentially the process of overlapping two audio sources and fading out the first source while simultaneously fading in the second source. Ableton Live achieves this effect using the underlying audio on either side of the boundary between adjacent trimmed clips.

If insufficient audio exists in the underlying clips, and the Loop switch is active for one or both clips, Ableton Live will loop the clips to extend their audio as needed to accommodate the crossfade.

Once a fade has been created, you can adjust the slope of the fade. To position the insert marker, click at the point where you want playback to begin. To select an area for playback or editing, click and drag across any area on one or more tracks. You can select both horizontally and vertically, allowing you to create selections across multiple tracks in a single operation. Selected areas are represented with a white highlight in the Arrangement View. The selection range is also indicated by two small markers along the bottom of the Scrub Area, just above the Arrangement View.

Click to position the insert marker where you want the selection to start. Scroll to the desired endpoint.

Shift-click at the desired endpoint to complete the selection. Zooming in is often helpful when you need to examine a clip or waveform closely. Zooming with the Magnifying Glass Icon The most common technique for zooming in the Arrangement View is to use the magnifying glass icon in the beat-time ruler or the Arrangement Overview.

To zoom using the magnifying glass icon: 1. Position the mouse cursor over the beat-time ruler or the Arrangement Overview, where the magnifying glass icon appears. Click and drag vertically to change the zoom level: drag down to zoom in; drag up to zoom out.

It always shows the complete song in a miniature form. The current zoom level is indicated by a black or white box in the Arrangement Overview depending on your chosen color theme. To change the zoom level using the Arrangement Overview, do the following: 1.

Click and drag the border of the outline to extend or shrink the currently visible area. Each key press zooms all tracks in by one level, with the Arrangement View centered on the insert marker.

Press Z to zoom the current Arrangement Time Selection to fill the screen. Press X to return to the previous zoom; press X a second time to zoom all the way out and see the complete Arrangement. With the Edit Grid enabled, the cursor will snap to grid lines that represent a subdivision of the current song tempo.

Selections, clip movements, and clip resizing operations are all constrained to the grid. Clips can be positioned to overlap or cover other clips.

Any underlying clips will be resized or obscured by overlapping clips. Editing Clips Editing Clips in the Arrangement View does not affect the timing of other clips on the same track. Deleting a clip or partial clip will leave empty space at the edit location. Move freely between musical elements and play with ideas, no end the music and without breaking your flow. Live 10 brings new functionality and new high-res visualizations to Push. With new collections of Packs, Live 10 has more sounds that are ready for finished music, right out of the box.

Max technology is now fully integrated into Live 10 Suite. No additional download or found out is required to make with and customize Max For Live devices. They only work. Plus new devices and capabilities bring more possibilities for musicians and device developers.

You can also download Movavi Screen Recorder Some interesting features of Ableton Live 10 Suite v Click on the button below to start downloading Ableton Live 10 Suite v


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