Transitioning to Ableton Live from any DAW, Part 2

Can't get your head around Ableton Live? Don't be put off! G. W. Childs highlights the similarities in Part 2 of this Transition to Ableton from any DAW series.  

In the last article, we went over the similarities between Ableton and other DAWs. This was important, because through similarities we can increase our understanding of those things that are alien to us. 

Now that we understand where the similarities lie, let's take a look at what can blow your mind once you start using Ableton. And, trust me, I know what you're thinking, 'It would take a lot to blow my mind, I have years of experience...'

Sound Designer, Musician, Author... G.W. Childs has worn many hats. Beginning in the U.S. Army back in 1991, at the age of 18, G.W. began learning electronics, communications and then ultimately audio and video editing from the Department of Defense. Upon leaving the military G.W. went on to work for many exciting companies like Lu... Read More


Don't want to be a wet blanket, but as a long time Logic user and someone coming out of a few decades of crafting songs as unfolding pieces of music rather than sequences (in Live terms, clips and scenes) strung together, I struggled with Live and eventually gave up on it. It feels more agile than Logic, yes, has some creatively 'unleashing' aspects to it - as you say - but you have to be the sort of musician who works in chunks or loves the spontaneity of performance. I didn't fit either of these profiles. Much as I admire Live's innovation, it was wired differently to my own brain.

Thanks for the article, very interesting read, and very timely. I think it's something a lot of 'traditional' DAW jocks are looking at.
Gary Hiebner
I thought Envelopes were a bit confusing in the beginning, but have grown to prefer using them than to use the automation via the Arrangement window.

You can create envelopes quite easily in the Session view. And then drag these clips into the Arrangement window and they retain the envelopes. As opposed to having to copy automation settings around in the Arrangement view.

Ableton is a different beats, but once you get your head around its inner workings I find that some things can get done more smoothy.

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