Ableton Live 7:Boost Ableton Live’s expressiveness with hands-on control

OBJECTIVE: Set up a control surface for hands-on control over various parameters in Ableton Live.BACKGROUND: Live can accept control signals from several hardware control surfaces, including those with Mackie Control compatibility. In this example we’ll use the Cakewalk by Roland V-Studio VS-400C controller, which does Mackie Control emulation. Other control surfaces work similarly.
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STEPS

1. Go Options > Preferences, click on the MIDI/Sync tab, then choose the control surface you’re using from the Control Surface list.

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2. Choose the Input and Output ports associated with the control surface.

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3. If the control surface includes nonmotorized faders, choose a Takeover mode (see Tips below).

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4. To use MIDI messages produced by the controller to control various Live parameters, under MIDI ports, turn on the Remote field for the controller you’re using.

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5. To assign a hardware control to a parameter, click on Live’s MIDI Map mode switch.

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6. While in MIDI Map mode, click on the parameter you want to control, then move the hardware controller. A small label will appear that shows the channel number and MIDI controller number (e.g., 1/24 means channel 1, controller #24) corresponding to the hardware controller.

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7. If the control surface generates Relative instead of Absolute MIDI control messages, choose the desired type of controller response.

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TIPS

In Step 3, “None” means that a parameter value jumps immediately to the messages being sent by the physical controller. With “Pick-Up,” moving the control has no effect until it matches the existing controller value, at which point the control “takes over.” “Value Scaling” compares the control setting and controller value, then calculates a smooth “morph” as soon as you move the control.
Repeat Steps 6 and 7 to do additional MIDI control assignments.
In Step 7, for more information on choosing the correct response, go to the Live manual chapter “MIDI and Key Remote Control,” then refer to the section “Mapping to Relative MIDI Controllers.”