Ableton has announced Live 5 (Mac/Win: $499), which includes a host of new features such as plug-in delay compensation, automatic tempo matching, and support for Mackie Control and MP3 files. For example, Clip Freeze frees up CPU power on your computer and eases the transfer of projects between computers: frozen clips retain their real-time launch capabilities, allowing for improvisation, performance or song arrangement. A project with frozen tracks can also be transferred from your main computer and run on a computer with less-than-optimal CPU specs.
Plug-In delay compensation automatically delays tracks to compensate for latencies caused by effects and plug-ins, including those on the return tracks. In addition, both audio and MIDI tracks have a manual delay setting to compensate for human, acoustic, hardware and other real-world delays.
The launchable arrangement locators offer arrangement/song-position markers with MIDI mapping and quantized recall. Using your mouse, computer keys, or MIDI messages, you can drop locators on the fly during playback or recording. Each locator can be named and assigned to a computer key or MIDI message. Jumping to a locator is subject to real-time quantization, just like launching Session View clips and scenes. The Previous and Next buttons allow you to jump from locator to locator.
Mackie Control Support lets you use compatible control surfaces. These include the Tascam FW-1082 and FW-1884, the Yamaha 01X, and the Mackie Control.
The program's Complex Warp Mode is a frequency-domain warping method specifically designed to accommodate composite signals such as mixed music. The new Clip Transport allows for performance-enhancing looping, editing, and shuffling on the fly for any clip in Live. Click anywhere in a waveform to jump there, in sync and subject to real-time quantization.
Additionally, clips can now be exported to disk for retrieval and reuse in any project. The exported Live Clip not only retains MIDI, audio, envelopes, warping, and other clip settings, but also the associated instrument, effects, and plug-ins. In Live''s Browser, Live Clips can be previewed as samples.
Live 5 has also introduced new effects (Beat Repeat, Phaser and Flanger, Auto Pan, Saturator, and Arpeggiator), count-in recording, VST MIDI effect support, a new preset library for Live devices, new and improved Live 5 lessons, and independent envelopes for filter, pitch, and other parameters in Simpler.
All customers who unlock Live 4 for the first time from June 1, 2005 until the final release day of Live 5 will receive a version 5 serial number on release day at no charge. For more information, including special upgrade prices and Beta testing opportunities, visit Ableton.com.