Ableton Live is loop-based music sequencer designed to be as much an instrument as a composing and arranging tool. DJs often use it for precision mixing. |
Ableton Live has been designed for use on a single screen, which makes it usable for live performances. There are very few pop ups or dialogs, which makes it easy to work with. Ableton Live employs two views, Arrangement and Session. Session can be used to organize and trigger clips, which can be arranged into sets and triggered as units. For instance, a bass/guitar track could be a set. The Arrangement view records tracks from sessions so that you can manipulate effects and arrangements.
Built-in features include Impulse, a drum sequencing instrument that lets the user employ a kit of up to 8 drum sounds. One can equalize, decay, pitch shift, etc. Ableton Live also has Simpler, a sampling tool that is very versatile. For instance, the user can download a single sample and shift the pitch to a selected note, among other things.
There are many add-on features such as Electric Piano, Mallet Percussion, Drum Machines, the Essential Instruments Collection of acoustic and electric instrument samples, Orchestral Instruments Collection and Latin Percussion. These allow the user to flavor their music any way they like with professional quality performances.
Ableton Live's many effects include Overdrive, Phaser, Resonators, Limiter, Beat Repeat, Chorus, Compressor, Flanger, VoCoder and more including some MIDI effects such as Arpeggiator. A piracy protection system and internet collaboration features are also included.