What is Live?
Live is software for creating musical ideas, turning them into finished songs, and even taking them onto the stage.
With two views - the classic Arrangement View, where musical ideas are laid out along a timeline, and the unique Session View, where you can improvise and quickly experiment with musical ideas - Live is a fast, fun, intuitive way to make music.
No matter what instruments you use to create, Live helps you get your ideas down quickly. Live’s Session View is a musical sketchpad you can use to mix and match musical ideas without the constraints of a timeline. Advanced warping features mean you can change the tempo and timing of any audio, in real time, without stopping the music. Use Live’s unique audio-to-MIDI conversion tools to turn drum breaks, guitar lines, or even harmony parts into MIDI patterns that you can edit and reuse with your own sounds. And with Live’s Racks you can make creative combinations of instruments and effects and control them with customized macros.
From arranging to mixing to mastering, Live has workflows that will help you go from song ideas to finished tracks.
You can organize and edit your music in a traditional timeline in Arrangement View, or improvise your way to a finished song, recording everything you do in Session View. And Live has all the tools you need to get your mix or master sounding great – everything from precise EQs to warm, vintage compressors.
Live’s Session View is the perfect environment for improvising and playing live – everything stays in sync, so you can mix and match audio at any tempo and never have to think about lining things up. Whether you’re playing a solo performance with hardware or software instruments, or processing audio with a live band, Live has got everything you need. And it’s perfect for jamming hands-on: Live works with any MIDI controller, and you can map knobs, faders, and buttons to control almost anything.
Live is software without limits: it can be tweaked to do almost whatever you can imagine. The Max for Live platform provides a vast collection of custom instruments and effects, the tools to build your own, and a dedicated community of artists and builders who share their creations. You can even work with Max for Live to connect to the wider world: control lights or projectors in sync with your music, repurpose controllers, connect to sensors, and more.
Then there’s Link: Ableton’s new technology that keeps software in time over a wireless network. Now a built-in feature of Live and a growing number of other applications, it makes playing together with multiple devices a lot simpler.
Updates and improvements
Each point release has also brought new features for Live’s hardware instrument, Push.
Regular free updates means Live 9 users get new creative tools and features. Live 9.7 brought new slicing features to Simpler, adding to the wealth of new sampling possibilities offered since the 9.5 update. Also in 9.5 were new vintage-sounding analog-modeled filters and improved waveforms and monitoring, while 9.2 added refinements and improvements to Live’s audio warping engine and a new Tuner device.
Live 9 Suite key features:
● Multitrack Audio recording and MIDI sequencing of software and hardware instruments
● Unique Session View for nonlinear composition, flexible performance and improvisation
● Real-time warping of audio: automatically sync music and loops, regardless of tempo
● MIDI-mappable controls for hands-on creation onstage or in the studio – plus automatic mapping for popular hardware controllers
● Audio to MIDI conversion tools: extract harmony, melody or drums from an audio sample and convert it into MIDI.
● Comprehensive selection of built-in audio effects for creative sound design, mixing or mastering
● Advanced sampling and slicing tools
● VST and Audio Unit support
● Groove engine to apply swing to audio or MIDI, or extract rhythmic ‘feel’ from other audio files
● Video import and export for scoring to video or warping video to music
Instruments, effects and sounds:
● 9 instruments: Operator, Sampler, Analog, Electric, Tension, Collision, Simpler, Drum Rack, Impulse – plus Instrument Racks and the External Instrument device
● 41 audio and MIDI effects
● 3000+ Instrument Racks and drum kits
● 54GB of loops and samples
Technical feature spec / compatibility:
● Nondestructive editing with unlimited undo
● Multitrack recording up to 32-bit/192 kHz
● Automatic plug-in delay compensation
● MIDI remote control instant mapping
● MIDI output to hardware synths
● MIDI Clock/sync
● ReWire support
● Link technology integration
● Multicore/multiprocessor support
● WAV, AIFF, MP3, Ogg Vorbis, FLAC file support
● Ableton Link integration
● Unlimited Audio and MIDI tracks
● Unlimited Scenes
● 12 Send and return tracks
● 256 Audio inputs, 256 outputs
● Rex file support
● POW-r dithering
● Serato Scratch Live integration