Ableton Live is one of the most popular DAW’s for musicians, producers, and performers all over the world. Known for its simplicity, ease of use, and seamless workflow; Ableton Live 10 impressed everyone. Now, Ableton has announced the latest Live 11 version with some massive updates. So whether you’re using Ableton for recording, performances, or production; you’re bound to find some benefits out of this latest release!
Most notably, Ableton has announced 6 major updates for Live 11 which we’ll go into detail down below!
Firstly, Ableton Live 11 features a new Comping feature. This new feature is perfect for your recording applications and hits the nail on the head. Allowing you to pick the best takes from your audio or MIDI recording and combine them. Or, splicing together random samples, link your tracks, and edit content simultaneously!
All in all, the comping feature is sure to simplify your workflow when recording vocals & instruments. Offering the perfect solution for addressing minor mistakes while also helpful for creating melodies and drum loops. Check out the feature video below to see Comping in action with Ableton Live 11.
Another new feature in Ableton Live 11 is MPE. Standing for MIDI Polyphonic Expression, Live 11 allows MPE-capable devices to control multiple parameters in real-time. Offering even more expressive instrumental performances and allowing you to add bends, slides, and pressure for each individual note in a chord. As well as adding variations, morphing between codes, and creating evolving sonic textures.
What’s more, Ableton’s native plugins in Wavetable, Sampler, and Arpeggiator are all updated to support MPE. Helping you modify the expression parameters through your MIDI devices in real-time.
As you’d expect with any DAW upgrade, Ableton Live 11 gives you a bunch of new plugins to play with. These include the likes of Hybrid Reverb, Spectral Resonator, Spectral Time, Pitch Loop & Inspired by Nature.
The Hybrid Reverb gives you a combination of both convolution and algorithmic reverbs. Easily place your sounds in any environment whether you’re looking for real-life environments or to defy physical reality. While the algorithmic side allows you to add control and modulate the reverb tail, run it parallel with the convolution side, or play it like an instrument for real-time sound design. It also has built-in modes including Large Hall, Shimmer, Reflections & Lo-Fi.
Next up we have the spectral resonator, a granular synthesis plugin which breaks the spectrum of your incoming audio signal into partials. Then, stretching, shifting, and bluring in either a subtle or radical way. The MIDI sidechain input also lets you process material in key & play it as if it were a polyphonic instrument.
Spectral Time processes your audio through a frequency-based delay that results in metallic echoes, frequency-shifted, and reverb-like effects. It also has a Freeze function that captures and holds a slice of audio. Whether you’re free-running or in time with the beat, Spectral Time allows for stuttered, glitched, and washed-out effects. So you’re able to create some truly unique textures and FX sounds.
Next up, you’ve got PitchLoop89. This plugin lets you create jittery glitch effects and delayed digital shimmers. Inspired by the Publison DHM 89 digital effects processor, the PitchLoop89 is a flexible tool that adds character to sounds in the studio or for in-the-moment experimentation.
Inspired By Nature
Lastly, Inspired by Nature is a combination of six instruments and effects. As the name would suggest, all 6 instruments take inspiration from natural ailments and allow you to create unique and warm sounds. The 6 instruments are the: Vector FM, Vector Grain, Vector Delay, Emit, Tree Tone & Bouncy notes.
Additionally, Ableton Live 11 is packed with a number of extra features for performing on stage. One of them being the ability to adjust tempo-based on incoming audio in real-time. So not only is this extremely helpful for live performances, but also for DJing. You can even turn Live 11 into a tempo-synced FX box.
On top of that, Racks now support up to 16 macros, and also come with extra features such as the randomization button, real-time MIDI mapping, and more.
Adding a new “Unpredictability” feature, Ableton Live 11 allows you to play with 3 different options. Those include Note Chance, Velocity Chance, and Follow actions.
Note Chance sets the probability of a note or drum hit occurring while generating random variations to your patterns. While Velocity Chance works similarly by creating humanized variations and dynamics to your sequences. Then you’ve got Follow Actions which ensures they can be linked to the clip length. So it’s faster than ever to create interesting sequences.
New instruments & Curated collections
Finally, Ableton Live 11 includes 3 new instruments including Upright Piano, Brass Quartet & String Quartet.
Upright Piano: This piano gives you natural warmth with an intimate feel. It’s perfect for recording a number of music styles whether its a folk song or electronic.
Brass Quartet: Brass Quartet adds a blend of trumpets, flugelhorns, trenor horns, and trombones into your music. Highlighting the natural breathiness, range of expression, and broad tonality of instrumentation.
String Quartet: Offering delicate pizzicato droplets as well as full, vibrant layers; you’ll get all the authentic timbres and textures of a string quarter. A combination of two violins, viola, and cello that is perfect for sonic exploration.
There’s also 3 new collection packs including Voice Box, Mood Reel, & Drone Lab. Voice Box gives you a range of contemporary vocal samples, Mood Reel offers organic and synthetic sounds, while Drone Lab is a combination of tonal, textural samples, and generative noise samples.
Ableton Live 11 – The Verdict
All in all, Ableton has added a number of exciting new features to Live 11! To celebrate the upcoming launch, Ableton are offering 20% off all instances of Ableton Live 10. You’ll also get a free upgrade to 11 once it’s launched. If you’ve been thinking about making the jump to Ableton, what are you waiting for!?