Practice English Speaking&Listening with: Ableton Live 11: Every New Feature (Scales, Macro Improvements, MPE, Comping + More)

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Ableton has just announced the latest version of their music production software, Ableton Live 11.

Live 11 is probably the biggest and most exciting update since Ive been using Live.

In this video, Ill cover absolutely everything thats new and why I think you should be prettyexcited about it too.

As of the release of this video, Live 11 is still in the Beta phase.

Illexplain how you can get access at the end of the video.

For now, lets dive into whats new.

Clips in Live can now be set to have a particular musical scale

chosen from 35 preset scale types.

When a scale has been selected

the Clipwill highlight the notes within that scaleusing the colour of the Clip

with theroot note indicated on the Piano Roll.

By default, the Piano Roll will stillshow notes that arent in the scale,

but you can click the Fold to Scale buttonto only show notes within the scale.

One of the things I see music producersstruggle with the most is music theory

and knowing which notes will sound good together.

Keys & Scales makes the process of programmingchords and melodies infinitely easier.

Evenif your music theory knowledge is solid,

the interface you get with a scale enabled Clipmakes it much clearer to see

which notes fit with your key and makes programming andediting MIDI much easier for everyone.

Once youve set a scale in a Clip, each new Clipyou create will default to the same scale type

but you can still set a separatescale on a per-Clip basis as well.

And for the music theory nerds out there,

you can right-click on the Piano Rollwithin a clip to choose how Live displays

sharps and flats with different optionsto cover any situation and scale type.

Push users will already be familiar with thedifferent scale types available.

Settingthe scale within a Clip will automatically setthe corresponding scale on Push and vice versa,

even on a per-Clip basis.

Im also really excited about what Keysand Scales opens up for future features.

While it's not here yet, I can definitelyimagine a future where it's possible

to change the key of an entire song on thefly, much as we can already do with tempo.

It is now possible to introducevarious layers of chance andprobability directly within MIDI Clips in Live.

Anyone who is already familiar with mychannel knows that Im more than a littleobsessed with chance and randomness

so thismight be one of my favourite new features.

In fact, Ive created a separate videothat explores all the new Chance andProbability features in Live 11 in detail

including some creative ways you can usethem in your music making.

Ill includea link to that in the description, butIll quickly summarise whats new here.

There is a new Probability Editor for MIDI Clips

in addition to the Velocity Editorthat youll likely be familiar with.

It can be toggled using the new buttonsfound at the bottom of the Clip view.

Here you can set the likelihood, using apercentage value, that a particular notewill trigger.

For example, if I set this to 50%...

...these notes will only play half of the time.

This lets you create MIDI clips that haveprobability-based variations built in

so your Clips can sound slightlydifferent every time theyre played.

Youll also notice that the interface ofthe Velocity handles has changed slightly.

This is to better accommodatethe new Velocity Range feature.

You can CMD or CTRL-click and dragon the Velocity handle of a note

to set a range of velocities thatthe note will trigger within.

again giving you an easy way of creatingMIDI patterns that sound more dynamic.

In addition to these, there are alsonew buttons in the Clip View to

randomise the Velocity or Probabilityvalues of a selected range of notes,

which also gives you a quick way ofadding dynamics to a programmed MIDI clip.

Altogether these new features letyou easily create much more

dynamic and interesting MIDI patternswith relatively little effort.

You can now have up to 16 Macros on any Rack.

Im sure this has been a long time featurerequest for many users

and it makes the alreadypretty awesome Rack system even more powerful.

This opens up a whole world of sound designopportunities

and I, for one, will most definitelybe updating many of my own Live Packs

and creatingplenty of new ones using the additional 8 Macros.

Less obviously useful is that fact that you can now also have fewer than 8 Macro controls.

Youcan hide and show Macro controls using the newplus and minus buttons under the Macro toggle.

This doesnt actually deletethe Macros, just hides them.

I really like the way that Rackslook with less than 8 Macros

and it makes Racks that dont use all8 Macros much easier to work with.

Youll also find a new button atthe top of any Rack

that lets youquickly randomise the settingsof all the Racks Macro controls.

Importantly, you can right-click on anyMacro

and choose to exclude that Macrofrom randomisation, for controls thatyou might not want to be randomised.

You now also have access to Macro Variations.

These save a recallable variationof the current Macro settings.

Click the New button to add asnapshot of the current settings.

Then make some adjustments to the Macros

And press New again to save another variation.

You can then quickly toggle between thevariations using each Variations play button.

The variations can be renamed andyou can update each variation by clicking the Overwrite Macro Variation button.

The uses for these Macro Variations aremany.

You could use them to quickly tryout different settings for an effect, orswitch between sounds in a live performance.

I explore some fun ways you can use all thesenew Macro features for creative sound design

in a separate video Ive made exploring all thenew chance and randomness features in Live 11.

Theres a link to that in the description.

Live 11 adds Take Recording and Comping Features

that lets you easily record multiple takes withina single track and then quickly create comps ofthose takes.

It works with both audio and MIDI.

Ableton have really done a good job with thisfeature cause it's pretty straightforward to use.

Recording over an existing Clip or using LoopRecording will automatically create new takeswithin that track.

You can then quickly comptogether the various takes by making a selectionwithin a Take and hitting Enter

or by draggingon the edges of the active region within a Take.

You can quickly audition Takes usingthe Audition Take Lane buttons.

Each Take is essentiallytreated like its own Clip,

meaning you can do everything youwould expect with Clips in Live,

for example, changing its Transposition,reversing or even Time Stretching it.

You can insert blank TakeLanes and load Clips into them,

meaning that you can also get creative with Takesand use them as a way to slice up and combine

different audio files in new and interesting ways.

An important related feature to TakeRecording is Linked Track Editing.

Select any number of Tracks in Live andchoose Link Track from the right-click menu.

This will synchronise various actions acrosseach of those Tracks including time selection,

edits, record arming, fadesand Take Lanes amongst others.

The most obvious use for this isworking with multitrack recordings.

Linked Track Editing allows you to dophase-locked edits across multiple tracks

making it much easier to work with things likemulti-micd drum kits, string sections, etc.

Both Take Recording and Linked TrackEditing are really important steps in

bringing Live closer to being the only DAWyou need for any music making situation.

Ive previously resorted to other DAWs likePro Tools if I needed to do something likerecord a drum kit

but these new features makeit super simple to do all of that in Live

and means that you can combine multitrack recordingwith other powerful tools in Live like Warping.

Live now features MIDI PolyphonicExpression or MPE support.

MPE isa relatively new technology that allows therecording of much more expressive MIDI data.

It brings electronic instruments much closer tothe expressiveness of real acoustic instruments.

MPE data can be recorded from a compatibledevice or drawn in directly to a Clip,

similar to how one might draw Automation,

so you can access the benefits of MPEeven if you dont have an MPE controller.

Clips now feature a dedicated ExpressionEditor

where you can edit things like Pitch,Slide, Pressure, Velocity and Release Velocity.

The important distinction to make between MPEdata and simple Automation

is that MPE is bydefinition polyphonic

meaning that you can recordor program separate data for every single note.

You can do per-note pitch bends, oruse things like Slide and Pressure

to adjust parameters of the soundseparately for individual notes.

MPE is a little intimidating at first,but once you wrap your head around it

the sound design possibilities are prettyimmense.

MPE support has been added to Simpler, Sampler and Wavetable

and there are a number of3rd party plugins that support MPE data as well.

Live 11 adds a number of excellent new effectsand includes some great updates to existing ones.

Theres quite a lot to look athere

so Ill most likely make separate videos in the coming weeks to explore all of the new effects.

Be sure to Subscribe if you wantto see those when they come out.

Lets quickly summarise whats new.

First up is Hybrid Reverb, which is a combinationconvolution and algorithmic reverb that sounds excellent.

It's got tons of features,multiple algorithm modes and flexible convolution settings.

The variousalgorithmic modes remind me a lot of thepopular Valhalla reverb plugins

and are allexcellent tools for creative sound design.

For many, I imagineit will be an introduction to the awesome world of convolution reverb.

There are 2 new spectral devices; SpectralTime and Spectral Resonators.

Both effects use Spectral FFT manipulation

which lets youprocess the frequency spectrum of your sounds in interesting ways

and adds new areas of sounddesign that werent previously possible with Live.

The Chorus, Flanger and Phaser deviceshave been replaced with 2 reworked devices

called Chorus-Ensemble and Phaser, Flanger,Doubler.

The new devices have all the features of the previous versions but the interfaces makemuch more sense and are a lot easier to work with.

They also add some really nice new features,like the Warmth control which I absolutely love.

Redux, Lives bit crusher effect has alsobeen updated with some new features

and an all-important Dry/Wet control, for amuch more flexible sound degradation tool.

There are also a host of newMax For Live devices planned,

but as of the release of this video, thosehavent been added to the current Beta.

In addition to these new devices, thereare also updated interfaces for Electric,Collision, Tension and Corpus.

Thedevices themselves have not changed, but the interfaces are now a littlecleaner and easier to work with.

Live 11 adds a new Tempo Following feature.

Users of the Beatseeker Max For Live device will be familiar with this concept.

Essentially, Live can listen to an external source and try to set Lives Tempoto follow the tempo of the external source.

To be honest, this is my least favourite newfeature and it can be a little hit or miss

but it could be a useful toolfor jamming with a live band

or playing along to turntables or olderhardware that doesnt have MIDI sync.

There have been some slight improvementsto Follow Actions in Live 11.

The layout of the Follow Action settings hasbeen improved and theres a new Jump action.

Most importantly, you can now link the FollowAction Length to the length of the Clip,

meaning you can have Follow Actionsoccur at the end of the Clip.

This opens up a ton of possibilitiesfor working with Follow Actions.

Theres a new Create FollowAction Chain command,

which automatically creates a chain ofFollow Actions on selected Clips.

You can also set the Follow Action Timedirectly within the Clip Editor.

Follow Actions are one of Lives more advancedfeatures, so you might not even be aware of them

but these new features are definitelyhighly requested

so Im sure those of you who do work with Follow Actionswill be pretty excited about them!

There have been a number of improvements tothe look and function of Scenes in Live 11.

Each Scene has its own Scene Number displaythat stays consistent even when rearrangingthe order of the Scenes.

The names ofnew Scenes will also default to empty.

This makes a lot more sense than howScenes used to be named and numbered

and is also really important for working with the newly added Scene Follow Actions.

Yes, you can now add Follow Actionsto Scenes as well, not just Clips.

This makes a number of liveperformance setups much easier to deal with

and opens up some creativepossibilities for sequencing with Scenes.

Lastly, the process of setting Scene LaunchTempos and Time Signatures is has changed a bit.

Scene Launch Tempos and Time Signatures letyou set a Tempo or Time Signature

for Live to change to when a Scene is launched

soyou can move between different tempos and time signatures within a single piece.

This waskind of a hidden feature before that many people didnt even know existed

so the new interfacemakes these much easier to discover and use.

There have been some improvements to theway things are organised in Lives Browser.

There is now a dedicated Category for Grooves,which makes them a bit easier to access,

as well as a category for the new Templatefeatures - more on those in a moment.

Inside the Audio Effect Category youll noticethat Audio Effects are now grouped into foldersbased on their function.

This should make Liveslibrary of effects much more approachable for beginners

and much easier for advanced usersto navigate and find the right effects.

Lives built-in Max For Live devices also now appear directly in the Instruments,Audio Effects and MIDI EffectsCategories.

This is another great step towards making Max For Live feel muchmore integrated with Live

and will expose a whole range of users to devices theymight not have previously known existed.

Live 11 adds greatly improved Template and Default Set features.

Many people might not know that Template Sets haveactually existed in Live for quite a while

but they involved creating a custom folder with a specific name in the User Library

and it was all a bit advanced to set up.

Now there is a dedicated TemplatesCategory that youll find in The Browser.

You can save Live Sets astemplates from the File menu.

A Default Set, the set the loads up when you create a new blank session,

can be created by going to the File menu...

...or by right-clicking on any templateand choosing Set Default Live Set

Templates are a great workflow improvement as theyallow you to save preconfigured Live Sets to get you started quickly.

For example, you might have different templates for different genres

or perhaps you could have one template for film scoring and one for music production or sound design.

The interface of the Clip Detail View hasbeen updated slightly

and overall I feel it looks a bit tidier, making it easier to navigate.

There are new tabs at the top toswitch between different modes,

including the new Expression Editor.

You can also now double-click on theClip Views header to minimise it,

which looks pretty cool and givesyou a bit more space to work with.

In addition to some overall improvementsin the Clip Detail View, there are alsosome refinements to Clip and Multi-clip Editing.

When Multi-clip Editing, all ofthe Clip controls are now visible, where previously only a few were visible.

You can select and edit multipleClip Loops simultaneously.

A new Focus Mode toggle lets you switch betweenfocusing on editing multiple Clips at once,or just a single focused Clip.

A new Draw Mode with Pitch Locksetting in Lives Preferences

lets you switch between Pitch Locked drawing,

which lets you click and drag to draw singlenotes according to the current Grid Division...

...or Melodic Drawing, which lets youclick and drag to draw Melodic phrases.

This functionality can be toggled whiledrawing by holding down the Alt key.

Im not joking when I say thatthis next feature is probablymy favourite new feature.

A new toggle in the Session View lets you showor hide meters that indicate how much CPU usageis coming from each individual Track.

It makesit super easy to pinpoint exactly which Tracks are using the most processing power if yourcomputer is running out of juice.

For people with older computers, like myself, this is an absolute godsend,

letting you quickly find tracks that are slowing everything down so youcan Freeze them or switch out some effects.

There is also an improved CPUdisplay in the top right of the interface that now shows both Currentand Average CPU usage across your set.

Thats most of the major features out of the way,so were onto some smaller refinements now.

There are a number of interface improvements across Live that make it a little morepleasant to look at and work with.

There are also new Live 11 themes,including some great Dark Themeswhich Im loving for their ease onthe eyes in long production sessions.

There are new Create Crossfade commands for quickly creating crossfades at theedges of Audio Clips.

You can createFade Ins...

Fade Outs...

and Crossfades...

or select across multiple Clips andCreate Crossfades on Clip Edges.

Live 11 will also include a hostof excellent new sound content including a collaboration with SpitfireAudio.

As of the release of this video, the new content is not yet availablebut should be added before the officialrelease.

It's also worth mentioning that there arentany major additions to Push or Push 2,but all of Lives new features translatewell to Push

for example, being able to access all 16 Macros in a Rackor choosing the Key of a Clip.

And thats it! That pretty much covers everysingle new thing in Live 11 asof the release of this video.

As this is released Live 11 willbe going into the Open Beta phase.

This is similar to how Abletonhandled the release of Live 10.

All the information you need about joiningup to the Beta program to give Live 11 atry can be found on the Ableton website.

Ill include a link in the description.

So, whats your favourite new feature inLive 11?

Drop a comment below to let me know.

Also, feel free to ask questions about specificfeatures and Ill do my best toanswer them with what I know.

As usual, please hit the Like button andSubscribe

and head to to find more Ableton tutorials, Live Packs andplenty of other great Ableton resources.

This has been Tom fromELPHNT, thanks for watching.

The Description of Ableton Live 11: Every New Feature (Scales, Macro Improvements, MPE, Comping + More)