The Ultimate Beginner’s Guide to Ableton Live 11 Lite: Getting Started with a New Live Bundle

Ableton Live is a DAW that doesn’t need to be introduced, and its combination of performance and production features means it’s as popular with artists and DJs as it is with creators.

Live 11 Lite is a scaled-down version of Ableton Live, with all the essential workflows, instruments and effects, but with a limited number of tracks, and for many years this has come with hardware applications and products. This month you can get a free copy of Ableton Live 11 Lite with the latest issue of Computer Music Magazine.

To mark this momentous occasion and also to help you get started using this fabulous software, we have put together a series of tutorials that present everything you need to get started with Ableton Live 11 Lite, so that you can learn how to create a track from stripe.

Our tutorials are primarily intended for new users, but that said, we will also point out some of the new features that you will find in Live 11 Lite, so even if you have used Live Lite before, there may be a few things you need to do. learn here.

Finally, while Live 11 Lite is great software, there are more complete versions of Ableton Live available at Ableton website. So let’s create in Live 11 Lite!


Ableton

(Image credit: Ableton)

Step 1: Now let’s create a song from scratch. Select New Live Set from the File menu. This will automatically create a Live project to organize the samples and audio in your Set. We’re going to start in the Session View and once we’ve sketched out a few ideas, we can transfer the items to the Arrange View for mixing and mastering.

Ableton

(Image credit: Ableton)

2nd step: Live Lite includes the Ableton Core library and contains many sounds and treatments to create a track. Open the browser on the left side and you will find various classified folders. Open the Clips folder.

Ableton

(Image credit: Ableton)

Step 3: Select clips and try to listen to them by clicking on the headphones icon at the bottom of the panel. We want to start with a beat and we went through the different clips and chose 909 Core Kit Disco 126 bpm.alc. You will see that it is an .alc file. Drag it to the first slot of the first MIDI track.

Ableton

(Image credit: Ableton)

Step 4: We love the part but want a different sound. Because it’s a MIDI clip, we can go through the kits and find a sound we like. You will see in the device view at the bottom, the clip was loaded with the 909 Core Kit. To change this we can watch through the browser or use the Hot Swap option.

Ableton

(Image credit: Ableton)

Step 5: To use Hot Swap, find and click the two-arrow icon at the top right of the 909 Core Kit title bar. This kicks us right into the drum racks. While the clip is playing, double-click the new racks to load them. We chose Coral Kit in the Drum Racks> Sampled folder.

Ableton

(Image credit: Ableton)

Step 6: Now let’s add a chord progression. Following the same process we used for Rhythm, in the browser open Packs> Main Library> MIDI Clips> Tonal> Chord Progression and choose the Rhythmic Piano E Minor 126bpm clip and drag it onto our next track. MIDDAY. Click the Play buttons for both clips or use the Scene button to listen to both clips together.

Ableton

(Image credit: Ableton)

Step 7: We love the game but want to make some changes. Double-click on the clip location to open the MIDI Clip View at the bottom. The clip is four bars long, but we want the part to loop eight bars. The first job is to adjust the length of the clip to 8.0.0, which we do in the left section.

Ableton

(Image credit: Ableton)

Step 8: Then move measure 4 of the original clip to measure 8. Use your lasso cursor and drag those MIDI notes. Now delete bar 3 and copy round bars 1 and 2 to fill the gap. Use the right click to set the fixed grid on a bar, then select each bar of notes and use the Duplicate option.

Thinking of using an external MIDI controller?

Session View’s grid layout and clip-style playback really lends itself to performance and once you’ve loaded a few clips, launching them from a hardware controller is fun and creative.

Many suitable devices are available, including the Ableton Push unit. Other options include Akai’s APC and various Novation Launchpads, giving you plenty of options to match your budget.

Once you have your device, getting started is very easy, and you just need to select it and connect it in the Preferences page under the Link Tempo MIDI tab.

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