Ableton Announces Live 6 and Sampler
Live 6 Public Beta To Be Posted In Late July
We knew this was coming… Ableton has announced Live 6 at Summer NAMM. Live 6 offers many new features targeted at specific music niches including Quicktime video support, a professional multisample library, and customizable racks of instruments and effects. Live 6 also delivers multicore support, enhanced project management tools, and improved MIDI control.
Taking aim at Sony’s Acid Pro 6’s excellent video and scoring attributes, Live 6 now offers new drag-and-drop Quicktime movie import making it easier than ever to improvise, compose and warp music to picture. Drag and drop movies directly into Live’s Arrangement View, and monitor the result on a video window or second screen. Then, align music to visuals, and process the movie’s audio signal within Live.
The Essential Instrument Collection provides Live 6 users with a comprehensive library of multisampled instruments. The included instruments cover the entire musical spectrum, from orchestral strings and brasses, to classic guitars and electric keyboards, to instruments like the harp and the glockenspiel. Load and play the collection in Live’s Simpler, or in Sampler, Ableton’s new optional multisample instrument.
The Essential Instrument Collection contains the following multisampled instruments…
â€¢ Steinway Grand
â€¢ Fender Rhodes MK 1
â€¢ B3 Jazz Organ
â€¢ B3 Rock Organ
â€¢ Solo Strings (legato): Double Bass, Cello, Viola, Violin
â€¢ Ensemble Strings (legato, pizzicato)
â€¢ Solo Brass (legato): French Horn, Bass Trombone, Tuba (Eb), Trumpet
â€¢ Ensemble Brass (legato, staccato)
â€¢ Solo Woodwinds (legato, legato vibrato): English Horn, Bassoon, Clarinet, French Oboe, Concert Flute, Alto Sax
â€¢ Ensemble Woodwinds (legato)
â€¢ Harp (fingers)
â€¢ Jazz Upright Bass
â€¢ Fender P-Bass (fingers, picks)
â€¢ Six-String Nylon Guitar (tones, chords)
â€¢ Fender Stratocaster Clean (tones, chords)
â€¢ Glockenspiel (hard mallets)
â€¢ Xylophone (hard mallets)
â€¢ Mixed Choir (ahh, ohh)
The Essential Instrument Collection will not be included with downloadable purchases. Download customers can choose, however, to have the Live 6 box including the Essential Instrument Collection shipped to them later for an additional fee.
Ableton also announced Sampler, an advanced sound-design and sound-sculpting instrument available as an upgrade within Ableton Live 6. In addition to providing perfect host integration, Sampler offers fresh sound-design possibilities through its unique processing and modulation options. When combined within Ableton’s Instrument and Effect Racks in Live 6, multiple Samplers provide unprecedented depth of control, automation and sonic possibilities.
Each instance of Sampler can host any number of sample zones. Key and velocity ranges as well as crossfades can be defined using a graphical editor. Numerous playback and looping options can also be set up for each zone. Sampler helps with mapping and also helps find appropriate loop points.
Most importantly, Sampler integrates perfectly with Live. Its GUI will be instantly familiar to users accustomed to Live’s look and feel. Its short loading times and efficient handling of large-volume libraries provide the sensation of a light-weight yet powerful engine. As with any Ableton instrument, users can modulate Sampler’s controls with clip envelopes, stack Samplers, attach effects and save projects including all samples used by Sampler to send to a colleague for collaboration.
Sampler avoids RAM shortages and loading-wait times by employing Live’s disk preloading technology. Sampler also imports common sample formats, including AKAI S1000, S3000, GigaStudio, EXS, SoundFont and (non-encrypted) Kontakt. Sampler can also access and edit Ableton’s aforementioned Essential Instrument Collection.
Unique Processing and Modulation:
Modulation – A dedicated oscillator can modulate samples by frequency or amplitude, enabling selective harmonic or disharmonic enrichment of the original timbres. Three LFOs, five multimode envelopes and various MIDI inputs also serve as modulation sources.Â Additionally, Sampler’s ability to modulate not only post processing but also the sample playback characteristics extends the instrumentâ€™s functionality in the direction of wavetable and granular synthesis.
Morphing – Every voice is processed with a morphable multimode filter and polyphonic saturation stage. Each aspect of the original sample, including sample start and loop position as well as loop length, can be polyphonically modulated.
Instrument and Effect Racks offer a new level of depth to Live without sacrificing accessibility. Use Racks to create, save and control customized groupings of multiple instruments, effects and plug-ins. Then distribute your creations online. Use the Rackâ€™s included knobs to adjust any number of parameters with a single knob or fader. Live 6 comes with many preconfigured racks with both instruments and common processing tools like guitar and bass distortion, drum processing, and mastering.
Live 6 also features a number of enhancements:
Multicore and Multiprocessor support allow the computational workload from instruments and effects to be distributed to other processors or cores, speeding up system performance.
Deep Freeze expands editing functionality with frozen tracks (temporary rendered files created to free system resources). Cut, copy, paste, duplicate and consolidate clips without having to re-freeze. Automate mixer and clip envelopes, record frozen Session View clips into the Arrangement, and drag frozen MIDI clips into audio tracks, all without missing a beat.
New and Improved Devices add to Live’s palette of creative tools.
EQ Eight has replaced EQ Four, with improvements that turn it into both a sound-shaping and a mastering tool.
Add analog richness with the warm distortion of Dynamic Tube. Like many of Liveâ€™s effects, it can be used for subtle coloration or drastic sonic manipulation. Saturator has been improved with the addition of a true analog saturation curve, a user-definable waveshaper, and an optional second output saturator stage.
Automate and play incoming MIDI notes with Note Length. This MIDI effect can generate new notes when incoming notes are released, emulating the release behavior of instruments like the piano or the harpsichord.
Operator has been augmented with a set of 24 dB filter modes, as well as new FM algorithms, giving users more sonic possibilities than ever.
Conveniently organize collections of Live Sets, Live Clips, presets, samples, and movie files with Live 6’s new Project Management Tools. Self-contain a project and pack it with lossless compression for archiving or transfer using Project Folders. Search for missing files and purge the disk of unused files with ease.
Live 6 is scheduled for release in September 2006 and will be available for $599/â‚¬549 from dealers worldwide and from the Ableton webshop. Users who do not need the Essential Instrument Collection and Live 6 box can purchase a downloadable version for $499/â‚¬469 from the Ableton webshop. Sampler will be available for $199/â‚¬169 to Live 6 users via the Ableton webshop in September 2006 as well. Upgrades from previous Live Versions are also available. More information about Ableton Live 6