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Ableton Quick Start

Ableton Live Tips & Techniques By Len Sasso
Published October 2020

Screen 1: Live's Arrangement view and Session view share MIDI, audio, return and master tracks.Screen 1: Live's Arrangement view and Session view share MIDI, audio, return and master tracks.

Moving to Live from another DAW? We've got you covered...

In this month's column we're going to offer a helping hand to anyone moving to Live from another DAW. If you're used to a more traditional way of working it may be a good idea to start by focusing on Live's Arrangement view. Session view is an important reason to choose Live, but Arrangement view more closely resembles other DAWs. If you're already comfortable with Live's dual views, you may still find some tips here worth pursuing.

When you launch Live for the first time, you'll be presented with Live's default Set displaying Session view (Screen 1, bottom). It has seven tracks displayed vertically: two MIDI, two audio, reverb and delay returns and the master track. Your computer's Tab key will switch to Arrangement view (Screen 1, top), which shows the same tracks in the typical horizontal DAW layout. The two views share all tracks: each MIDI and audio track is restricted to playing clips from one view at a time, but different tracks can play clips from different views. The return and master tracks receive their input from tracks playing in either view. You can record Session view clips into Arrangement view, and you can copy clips from either view to the other by hitting the Tab key whilst dragging.

The views share a control bar along the top for transport and global functions. The optional Overview bar (Cmd+Opt+O/Ctrl+Alt+O) just below the control bar is handy for viewing your arrangement while in Session view as well as for horizontally resizing Arrangement view's track display. In Arrangement view, H and W buttons at the right end of the Overview bar resize the...

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Published October 2020

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