Ableton Announces Plans For Loop Create 2022, An Online ‘Day Of Inspirations’ For Music Makers

Ableton has announced plans for Loop Create 2022 – an online “day of inspiration for music makers”:

“At this year’s edition of Loop Create, we’ll take a closer look at the ways people are making music together today; pooling their talents and ideas in collaborations, cooperating with each other to do things they couldn’t do on their own, and adding their voices to collective forms of creation for fun, profit and surprise.

Loop Create is an online day of inspiration for music makers, running for 6.5 hours, featuring interviews, workshops, an interactive production challenge and more. Join us on October 29th, as we explore the continuum of forms of collaboration.”

See the Ableton site for details.

Ableton Co-Founder Robert Henke Says It’s Time To Reconsider ‘Underrated’ Compact Disc Format

In a post on Facebook, Ableton co-founder and media artist Robert Henke (Monolake) argues that it’s time to reconsider the ‘underrated’ compact disc format for music:

“I still love physical products. But manufacturing big heavy plates of plastic and have them shipped around the globe is a huge waste of energy and resources. In times of global warming and dependency on cheap energy from the likes of Russia or Saudi Arabia, I consider not doing any releases on vinyl anymore, but fully embrace CDs.

The last big physical media innovation, with a better signal to noise ratio, better channel separation, better frequency response than vinyl in a smaller package Compact Disk, you are underrated and you will always have a place in my heart.”

He goes on to list 7 reasons for moving from vinyl to CDs as a physical distribution format, noting that vinyl is more expensive to ship and CDs will last longer.

Is it time to reconsider CDs as a physical distribution medium for music? Share your thoughts in the comments!

Ableton Live 11.2 Now Available In Public Beta

Ableton has announced a public beta of Live 11.2, an update that introduces an improved Reverb, adds support for AUv3 and more.

Reverb has been updated with a refined interface, new Density controls, a new switchable filter, CPU optimizations and more.

Live now features native support for AUv3 plugins on macOS 10.15 or higher. This means more options for Live users running their systems on Apple Silicon Macs.

Here’s what’s new in Ableton Live 11.2:

Capture MIDI

  • Capture results are no longer influenced by the song tempo set by the target track’s previous Capture attempts.

  • When Live’s transport is running, Capture MIDI will keep longer phrases in captured clips.

Control Surfaces

  • In the Launchkey MK3 Control Surface script, the Quantise button can now quantize clips in Session or Arrangement View.

  • On the PreSonus ATOM SQ, it is now possible to scroll between device parameter banks by holding the bank navigation buttons down.

  • Fixed an issue in the SL_MKIII Control Surface script that resulted in incorrect LED button states when exiting Drum Mode.

  • In the ATOM SQ Control Surface script, it is now possible to control the Master Track volume and pan in Song mode when the Master Track is selected.

  • The encoder sensitivity for the ATOM SQ Control Surface script has been refined to better match the parameters they control. Additionally, the encoders can be used to fine tune parameter values when the Shift button is pressed.

Core Library

  • Added audio and MIDI clips to Session View in Live’s Demo Song.

Interface

  • The icons in Live’s Preferences and dialogs have been improved.

  • Live now shows different icons for Live Clip (.alc) files that distinguish between Audio and MIDI content in the browser.

  • When renaming tracks, [Tab] will navigate to the next track or chain header, while [Shift][Tab] navigates to the previous track or chain header.

  • Value ranges on vertical rulers in the MIDI Note Editor are now always displayed as two values stacked vertically.

  • Improved drag and drop behavior within list views (such as the Groove Pool and device chains). Instead of always being inserted before the target item, dropped items will now be placed dynamically, depending on which half of the target item the cursor hovers over. In addition, the copy modifier [ALT] now works more consistently.

  • When Num Lock is switched off on Windows, the number pad arrows, PgUp, PgDn, Home, and End keys now function as expected.

  • Disabled devices now display an alert icon above error messages in Device View.

  • Updated various info texts.

  • Updated the What’s New in Live lesson.

Max for Live

  • Updated the bundled Max build to version 8.3.1. For the changelog, visit:  https://cycling74.com/forums/max-8-3-1-released

    • live.banks: added warnings to explain non-reactivity in Max-only

    • Dynamic Colors: changed label of ‘live_control_fg’ to ‘Text /Icon’

    • jweb / CEF: fixed usage in Max for Live (Windows)

    • live.* ui objects: updated color code

    • live.banks: banks configuration is retained if device is opened and saved in Max

    • live.comment: linecount is preserved

    • live.gain~: @orientation 1 typed-in a box works as expected

    • live.gain~: auto-adapts when transforming to MC version

    • live.observer: fixed value output after opening/closing Max editor

    • crosspatch: works in the context of a Max for Live device hosted in Live

    • Max for Live / Gen: improved fixes for intermittent crashes

  • Audio driver input and output latencies are now taken into account for Max for Live devices that contain audio routings to external targets. If needed, users can revert to the previous behavior by using the -DisableM4LRoutingCompensation debug option in an Options.txt file.

  • The time_signature_numerator, time_signature_denominator, time_signature_enabled and tempo_enabled properties are now available in the Max for Live API. Corrected descriptions for the properties have also been added.

  • Improved and updated the scale_name and scale_intervals descriptions in the Max for Live API.

New Devices and Device Improvements

  • Reverb:

    • The Reverb device’s interface has been updated with a fresh design.

    • The Reverb device’s Density and Quality parameters have been renamed to Diffusion and Density. The parameter values for Density (previously Quality) have also been changed from Eco, Mid, and High to Sparse, Low, Mid, and High. Sparse mode allows for lower CPU usage.

    • Added a Smooth drop-down menu to the Reverb device. You can now specify how the Size parameter responds when changed using the Smooth options None, Slow, or Fast.

    • Setting Smooth to None means that some artifacts may occur when changing the Size parameter values. The Slow and Fast options ensure that new delay times are updated over a specific period of time, resulting in a more musical sound.

    • Added a switchable filter type to the High filter in Reverb’s Diffusion Network. You can choose between a one-pole lowpass filter or a low-shelf filter.

    • Optimized for better CPU performance.

  • Tuner:

    • The Tuner device now includes three new options for note spellings. You can access a menu with these options when you right-click anywhere within Tuner’s UI:

      • Sharps (C#)

      • Flats (D?)

      • Sharps and Flats (C#/D?)

    • It is now possible to zoom out to a full octave in Tuner’s Histogram View by clicking the interface and dragging the cursor horizontally.

  • In the Phaser-Flanger device, the Phase parameter of the LFO now has a default value of 180 degrees.

  • The Excitator section of the Tension device is now called “Exciter” in Live and on Push.

  • A context menu option for a Hi-Quality mode has been added to the Delay device. Switching off Hi-Quality uses less CPU resources.

  • The Channel EQ device now uses less CPU resources.

  • Presets containing the Saturator device now run with improved CPU usage.

  • Inactive visualization data will no longer be sent in the Wavetable and Phaser devices, resulting in slightly improved performance.

  • When mapping and unmapping device parameters to Macros, the Map/Unmap labels now appear as expected.

  • A Hi-Quality option has been added to the [right-click](Win) / [CTRL-click](Mac) context menu of the Redux device. Using Redux with Hi-Quality switched off saves some extra CPU.

Plug-ins

  • Added native support for AUv3 plugins on macOS 10.15 or higher.

    • Live’s Preferences now include options to enable both AUv2 and AUv3 plug-ins.

  • Plug-in errors are now shown in Live’s Status Bar, along with a linked detailed error report.

Push

  • Push 2 mappings for the Reverb device have been redesigned to include parameters for new features.

  • On Push 2, the parameter names of the AAS devices (Analog, Collision, Tension and Electric) have been improved and aligned with the UI for readability.

Session View Improvements

  • It is now possible to simultaneously rename multiple rack chains in Session View.

  • When navigating tracks and device chains using the left arrow key in Session View, navigation will stop at the first track header as expected.

Setup

  • To avoid incompatibilities, you will be asked to save Live Sets created with an older version of Live as a new file in Live 11.2.

  • Live’s Audio Preferences now include an option to follow system settings for Input and Output on macOS. When enabled, changes made to system audio preferences are also reflected in Live.

  • Renamed the Customization section of Live’s Preferences to Display Customization, which now also includes the Zoom Display setting.

In addition, the update includes a variety of bug fixes and other performance improvements. See the Ableton site for details.

EboSuite 2.0 Lets You Treat Video Like Audio In Ableton Live

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Superboth 2022: The developers of EboSuite, a collection of video plug-ins for Ableton Live, have introduced EboSuite 2.0 – a major update that adds live video recording, which opens up new ways of performing and working with video live.

Since EboSuite was introduced, the developers have also expanded the number of plugins it offers from 6 to 54. They describe the collection a “the most advanced software to generate, play, manipulate and mix visuals in Ableton Live.”

“If you know Ableton Live, you know EboSuite,” they say. “It’s that simple.”

Features:

  • Treat video like audio
    • Play video in Session View.
    • Edit video clips using Warp Markers, Loop, Start/End etc.
    • Use Live’s audio mixer as a video mixer with blend modes
    • Mix video using Live’s crossfader with visual crossfade effects
    • Position, scale and rotate video tracks to make a visual arrangement
  • Get creative with video
    • Trigger video live or with MIDI clips
    • Pitch and tune video with different tuning modes
    • Simulate video scratch
    • Realtime time-stretching
    • Slicing, Velocity to opacity, audiovisual ADSR
    • One-shot, Loop, PreRoll, and more …
    • Fully automatable
  • Create your own visuals
    • ISF support, more than 1500 ISF effects and generators available for virtually unlimited visual possibilities
    • 34 image control, utility effects, and creative distortion effects incl. Luma/Chroma key, Mask, Blur
    • Organize effects in groups
    • Parameter smoothing
    • Easy to combine with Live’s audio effects, fully automatable
  • Other features:
    • Connect multiple webcams or iPhone and iPad cameras
    • Support for many video codecs (HAP, H264, MPEG4, PJPG, etc.)
    • Convert video to the HAP video codec within Live
    • Support for grouping, racks, linking
    • Create polyscopic compositions
    • Compile MIDI clips to a movie file within Live

Pricing and Availability

EboSuite 2.0 is available now for MacOS for 159.00.

Ableton Announces Loop Session: In the Studio With Grand River

Ableton Loop has announced a free event taking place May 21, 2022 on loop.ableton.com.

Loop Session: In the Studio with Grand River is the first in a new series of online experiences for music makers. Each event in the series will focus on one artist’s practice and ideas.

In the first session, attendees will get a behind-the-scenes look at Grand River’s studio practice and learn about her method of composing by playing. The artist will select some instruments from her own studio, then join Ableton’s Dennis DeSantis in Bewake Studios, Berlin to create a piece of music and take part in an audience Q&A.

After the 90-minute studio session, attendees can join the Loop Cafe – a group video chat where music makers can discuss the session and their own studio practice.

The session starts at 6pm, Berlin/Germany (UTC+2). You can use the event site’s timezone selector to find out when it happens in your local time zone.

You can sign up on the site and get are reminder before the event.

Free Ableton Instruments Feature The Eerie Sound Of The Musical Saw

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Sound designer Mike Longo of ExpandingSound.com has shared a free collection of Ableton Live Instruments based on the eerie sound of the bowed or musical saw.

Hand saws can be played as a musical instrument by bowing the edge, creating a haunting vocal sound, similar to the sound of a theremin.

Here’s what Longo has to say about the free Live Instruments:

“A friend of mine named Jessie, who’s in a band called Sugarskull Piledriver/Choosy Moms, has been playing the saw for a little while. I requested at one of their gigs that he bring his saw with him, so I could sample it. We went to the basement of the club and got a few quick samples, and I was able to make some pretty crazy sounding Ableton instruments out of it, that range from haunting to plucky.

I don’t know if you would always think it was the saw as you hear them, but its definitely a unique quality nonetheless. Hope you enjoy it! I’ve been having fun playing around with them and creating some atmospheric ethereal sounds. This jam was whipped up using only the Ableton Saw instruments and a drum rack.”

Pricing and Availability:

The Ableton Bowed Saw Instruments Live Pack is available now as a free download.

Ableton Intros Free Microtuner For Live

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Ableton today introduced Microtuner, a free MIDI device for Live that lets you import, edit, and generate microtonal scales.

With Microtuner, you can load scale files, create custom scales, and morph between tunings in real time – all with polyphony, MPE, and Lead/Follow modes to sync scales across instruments.

Features:

  • Tap into a broad range of scales and tuning systems with Microtuner’s import function, or build your own from scratch with a customizable scale generator.
  • Import and sync tuning files – Microtuner supports Scala tuning files, which you can download for free from the Scala archive. Just drag and drop a scale or folder of scales into the device to get started. If using multiple instances of Microtuner, you can sync tunings across instruments with the device’s Lead and Follow modes, or by connecting it to an MTS-ESP client plugin.
  • Edit scales and notes – Any tuning file you import can be customized. Tweak individual notes, transpose entire scales, or modify base frequencies as needed. The Scale Editor’s Follow button allows for incoming MIDI notes to set the pitch you’re working on, so you can play sounds out as you edit them. Finally, a Revert button reloads scales back to their original state.
  • Create new scales – The device’s Generator panel features three parameters for crafting scales: number of pitches, octave frequency ratio, and pitch distribution randomization. Use up to 128 pitches to build nuanced microtonal systems, or play with octave frequency ratios to explore some of the many scales that aren’t tuned to equal temperament.
  • Blend scales and add expression – Two separate scale decks mean you can blend two scales in real time using the device’s dedicated slider knob. Create shapeshifting arpeggios, recasted chords, and morphing melodies as you move between tunings. Combine this with a polyphonic synth that supports MPE to add even more expressive depth to your sound.

Audio Demos:

Pricing and Availability:

Microtuner is available now as a free download. Live 11 Standard (version 11.1 or higher) & Max for Live required.

Free ‘Spooky Theremin’ Instrument For Ableton Live

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Synthesist and Ableton Certified Trainer Brian Funk shared a free Ableton Live pack featuring a classic ‘spooky theremin’ sound.

In the video tutorial above, Funk demonstrates his sound design process, synthesizing the theremin with Ableton Live’s Wavetable and then adding expressive controls with pressure and the modulation wheel.

You can download the free Live Pack via Funk’s site, where you’ll also find hundreds of previous Live Packs and sound design tutorials.

New Customizable Controller For Ableton Live, Open-Control

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Developer Pierre-Antoine Grison has launched a Kickstarter project to fund production of open·control, a customizable control surface for Ableton Live.

Grison is a producer on Ed Banger Records as Krazy Baldhead, an Ableton Certified Trainer and has previously used Kickstarter to fund production of the State Of The Loop pedalboard for Ableton Looper.

open-control is available in three formats – Pocket, Boxed & Maker – so that both the hardware and functionality of the controller can be customized to meet your requirements.

Grison says that open·control was born with two main goals:

  • It should show information not available on other MIDI controllers, such as Scene names, Marker names, Variations, etc.
  • It should let the user decide what actions each button and knob should perform, and do that easily, without any MIDI-mapping or scripting knowledge.

Features:

  • Bright LED Matrix display
  • 6 Buttons or Switch pedal inputs
  • 6 RGB LEDs for visual feedback
  • 2 Knobs or Expression Pedal inputs
  • MIDI In and Out ports
  • Standard USB

Video Demo:

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Pricing and Availability

open-control is being funded via a Kickstarter campaign and it is available to project backers with the following pricing:

  • Pocket version : 69€
  • Boxed version : 129€
  • Maker version : 59€

Note: Crowd-funded projects involve risk, so make sure you read details at the project site.

Ableton Releases Modeselektor ‘Extended Sounds’ Pack


Today Ableton announced Extended Sounds, a new Pack for Ableton Live by Modeselektor. The Pack is a construction kit sampled from a huge variety of synths and drum machines from Modeselektor’s broad collection of classic studio gear and wraps them up in “wild effects with eminently-playable presets.”

Created with the same ethos as Modeselektor’s 2021 album “Extended,” the Extended Sounds Pack gives the user access to many of the distinctive elements that have defined the sound of Gernot Bronsert and Sebastian Szary’s Modeselektor project. Extended Sounds delivers a bevy of handcrafted instruments, drum kits, MIDI clips, Effect Racks and presets to incorporate into projects.

At the heart of the Pack are more than 2000 samples from equipment in the Modeselektor studio. The multi-sampled synths and drum machines are then distinctively processed through complex effects routings. Live’s native synths receive the same treatment, giving Wavetable and Operator “that signature Modeselektor grit.”

The pristine recorded samples in this Pack meet extensive effects chains for dramatic transformations. The Macro Variations introduced in Live 11 are often the first thing you’ll see when loading an instrument, Drum or Effect Rack from this Pack. Beyond the uniquely Modeselektor preset names you’ll find crushing distortion, heavily-modulated resonators and scuzzy reverbs, all multi-mapped for quick control over the chaos within.

The demo Live Sets found in the Extended Sounds Pack offer an insight into how the duo build and arrange their tracks, while the included MIDI clips further break down how they construct the foundations of their music. Divided into useful sub-folders for easy integration into the user’s work, combine the clips with drum kits and instruments, and easily explore new configurations of sound, rhythm and melody.

Pricing and Availability. The Extended Sounds Pack from Modeselektor is a complete production toolkit, and is available from Ableton for $59US. A free demonstration version of the Pack is also available at this link.