Why Ableton Live is Different From Other Music Recording Software
Back in the Day…
As a recording musician for many years, I started recording back in the day with an Atari 1040 STE. It was a superb computer and it had dedicated MIDI ports. There wasn’t much audio recording done at that particular time with any computers and the Atari certainly wasn’t equipped for it.
However, syncing up with dedicated audio recording devices like ADAT, reel to reel and even 4 or 8 track tape decks was much more popular. The main types of recording at that time were with MIDI – and it worked a dream!
The Atari was great because you just loaded up 1 program from disc and you were ready to go – without distractions from the internet. The software I used at that time was Cubase, and it became the industry standard for MIDI sequencing.
Cubase’s linear interface allowed you to visualise the layering of tracks and the timeline travelled from left to right – It was all kind of straight forward and keyboard shortcuts enabled you to compose tracks extremely quickly.
Switching Over to Ableton Live
Ableton Live was a very different animal in the form of appearance and included clips and a session mode. I think Ableton Live would have been easier for me if I hadn’t used Cubase. But, it didn’t take long to understand the concept of recording and try out composing in a very different way.
Cubase allowed you to loop between 2 points and dub record over the top. But Ableton Live can have endless loop configurations which open far more opportunities for creativity.
I now understand why Ableton Live is very popular with DJ’s because it allows you to drop in ideas, loops, record in small sections, jump to new sections with literally the press of a key, or controller. In fact, everything in Ableton is assignable so you can customise it easily to suit your working environment and musical equipment. One of the main strengths of Ableton is the addition of FX which can be controlled in real-time during track playback as well as being recorded into your mix.
I would recommend to try out the lite version of Ableton Live and just simply follow the easy tutorials that ableton Live have assembled.
Both versions are of course the same engine but with different sound sets.
You can also expand your sound library from 3rd party companies as well as from Ableton.
To get started you can download Ableton Lite