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Exploring the Live browser

From: Ableton Live 9 Essential Training

Video: Exploring the Live browser

Live's virtual instruments, effects and clips are most easily accessed through Live's browser. Let's take a first look at how to navigate the browser and then preview and load clips in presets. So, the Browser is located in the left hand side of the window here in Live. And we can open and close the browser by clicking this triangle that's in the upper left-hand corner of the browser. You can also do that by key command which would be Option Cmd+B on a Mac. Or Ctrl+Alt+B on a PC. Now the browser is divided into two general areas.

Exploring the Live browser

Live's virtual instruments, effects and clips are most easily accessed through Live's browser. Let's take a first look at how to navigate the browser and then preview and load clips in presets. So, the Browser is located in the left hand side of the window here in Live. And we can open and close the browser by clicking this triangle that's in the upper left-hand corner of the browser. You can also do that by key command which would be Option Cmd+B on a Mac. Or Ctrl+Alt+B on a PC. Now the browser is divided into two general areas.

At the top, we have Categories, and at the bottom, Places. In Categories, we have access to things like Sounds, and Drums sounds. The various Virtual Instruments, Audio Effects like EQs and Compressors and Reverbs, MIDI effects like the Arpeggiator or the Scale plug-in. There's a special category for Max for Live and we've got Max Audio Effects, Instrument Effects and MIDI Effects there. Plugins gives you access to third party plugins like those from Apple, Celemony, Spectrasonics or Waves or some other third party plugin manufacturer.

And in the Clips area, we have access to clips, which we'll talk about more in just a second. And then in the Samples area, we have access to one-shot samples like kick hits and snare hits and other things of that nature. In the Places area, we have access to your User Library, and you can also set up custom libraries. And you can also access any packs that you've downloaded from Ableton Live and installed in the system. So, a clip, is a recording of an audio signal or a MIDI performance. These clips represent a musical building block that can be used to build a song, or a section of a song. An though they can be of any length, most Live clips are two, four or eight bars long, an are edited so that they can be repeated or looped. So we can audition and load clips from the browser. So I'm going to go down to the Clips category, and I can choose a clip over here, and I can audition that if I've got the Preview button selected. And you can click this button here at the bottom of the list to preview it, or press the Right Arrow on your computer keyboard.

(music playing). You could press your Spacebar to stop playback. And when it's a little bit too loud, you can adjust the preview listening level with this Preview cue volume control over here at the bottom of the master track. Now if you want to load a clip to one of the clip slots here in Session view, you can select it, choose this working beat here. And I can either double-click on that, hit my return key, or I can simply click it and drag it and drop it on the clip slot on the track where I want to place it.

And I can tell this is an Audio clip, because when I look down here in Clip view, I actually see the audio waveform, among other things. Now, if I want to hear that clip, I can launch that by clicking on the clip launch button here on the left edge of the clip. Let's try that. (music playing). Now, I can stop that several ways, and it's important to know the significance. So that time, I stopped it with the Spacebar, and that left the clip in focus. And I know that because I see the Play or Launch button here on the left-hand side is still lit in green. And that means that if I press the spacebar again, any clips that have focus, are going to immediately start playing.

(music playing). And that time, I stopped the clip from playing by pressing the Stop button on an empty clip slot on that track. So, we've seen an audio clip. Let's take a look at a MIDI clip, and I have one loaded on the next track. So, if I select that, in the Clip view down here at the bottom of the window, we can see that I no longer have an audio waveform view. I can actually see MIDI notes. So let's check that out. (audio playing). Now playing and stopping starts the same way.

I can either click the Launch button on the clip and if it remains in focus I can press the spacebar again. And I can stop the clip by pressing the spacebar. Or I can stop it by clicking a Stop button on any one of the empty clip slots that are on that track or at the bottom of the track. Or I can go over and I can click the Stop All Clips button set at the bottom of the master track. I'll do that and I'll clear everything. Now lets take a look at Presets. So I'm going to go into the instrument category and again I'll look for some drums.

So I'm going to go into the drum instrument in Ableton Live which is called impulse. And lets just grab one and lets check out the grinder kit. So I'll choose that. (audio playing). Now that immediately started playing back because the Preview button was loaded. And there's just a few samples loaded in the drum instruments that's playing this. And there's very, very short queue that they load for all of the presets now. So I can hear that very quickly. Now if I want to load that preset. Again I can double-click on it.

I can drag it over to the Drop Files and Devices area and this time let's double-click it and see what it does. So, this time let's create a new MIDI track. So, I'll come up here to the top and insert MIDI track and now I can Click and Drag that. And drop that at the top of the track, on a clip slot anywhere on the track or down in the drop and instrument area. And notice that I didn't get a clip on any of the clip slots here. The track instead was placed in record and it looks like I have record buttons on any of the clip slots. So, when you load a device you don't get a clip. You get the device and you're going to create a clip. Now because it's in record, I can quickly audition what I got. So I'll press middle C here.

(audio playing). Which is mapped to this first slot on impulse slot. And now I'm ready to record a clip. So now we know how to preview and load clips, and software instrument device presets. We've also learned the important difference between clips and presets.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Ableton Live 9 Essential Training
Ableton Live 9 Essential Training

80 video lessons · 11459 viewers

Rick Schmunk
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 2m 36s
    1. Welcome
      1m 6s
    2. Using the exercise files
      43s
    3. What you need to know
      47s
  2. 7m 44s
    1. What is a digital audio workstation?
      4m 13s
    2. Choosing the right gear and setting up a system
      3m 31s
  3. 11m 8s
    1. Setting up audio preferences
      4m 0s
    2. Setting up MIDI preferences
      2m 44s
    3. Optimizing performance
      4m 24s
  4. 38m 55s
    1. Nonlinear sequencing with Session view
      3m 42s
    2. Understanding the Session view window
      5m 8s
    3. Exploring the Live browser
      5m 49s
    4. Loading and playing clips
      4m 35s
    5. Moving and copying clips
      2m 55s
    6. Working with clip properties
      8m 17s
    7. Working with scenes
      8m 29s
  5. 24m 15s
    1. Using the browser
      4m 56s
    2. Searching for and auditioning clips and devices
      4m 19s
    3. Working with Live sets and projects
      4m 16s
    4. Managing files in Live
      3m 12s
    5. Exporting clips and devices
      7m 32s
  6. 33m 0s
    1. What is a software instrument?
      6m 29s
    2. Preparing to record MIDI
      5m 0s
    3. Recording and overdubbing MIDI
      4m 47s
    4. Using a computer keyboard to enter MIDI
      5m 26s
    5. Utilizing the pencil to enter MIDI notes
      5m 45s
    6. Taking advantage of third-party and multi-output MIDI devices
      5m 33s
  7. 33m 22s
    1. Navigating and zooming in the MIDI Editor
      5m 29s
    2. Configuring the MIDI Editor grid
      5m 2s
    3. Selecting and quantizing MIDI
      5m 3s
    4. Quantizing with grooves
      7m 23s
    5. Editing pitch and note duration
      6m 1s
    6. Editing MIDI velocities
      4m 24s
  8. 10m 10s
    1. Preparing to record audio
      5m 43s
    2. Recording audio
      4m 27s
  9. 34m 22s
    1. Understanding Arrangement view
      4m 10s
    2. Zooming in and out and playing in Arrangement view
      4m 46s
    3. Recording in Arrangement view
      4m 4s
    4. Recording from Session view to Arrangement view
      5m 22s
    5. Adding and using locators
      3m 32s
    6. Copying, duplicating, and editing clips in Arrangement view
      5m 53s
    7. Reworking clips
      6m 35s
  10. 25m 35s
    1. Understanding the mixer
      7m 36s
    2. Using sends and returns
      6m 52s
    3. Building headphone cues
      4m 58s
    4. Grouping tracks
      6m 9s
  11. 41m 7s
    1. Working with effect devices
      5m 59s
    2. Understanding EQ and filters
      7m 30s
    3. Using compressors and dynamic processors
      6m 26s
    4. Building interesting effects with delay effect processing
      7m 20s
    5. Using reverb effectively
      8m 5s
    6. Setting up side chain effects easily
      5m 47s
  12. 11m 15s
    1. Creating rhythmic patterns with the Arpeggiator effect
      6m 3s
    2. Building background parts with the Chord and Scale effects
      5m 12s
  13. 11m 44s
    1. Mapping keys with Keymap mode
      4m 12s
    2. Mapping device controls to the MIDI keyboard
      3m 16s
    3. Using the instant mapping feature
      4m 16s
  14. 31m 51s
    1. Recording real-time automation
      6m 24s
    2. Drawing automation manually
      7m 48s
    3. Automating clips in Session view
      8m 36s
    4. Editing existing automation information
      4m 57s
    5. Using fades to mask audio pops and clicks
      4m 6s
  15. 20m 59s
    1. Understanding the basics of warping
      8m 43s
    2. Creating clips that loop smoothly
      6m 37s
    3. Using warp features to quantize audio
      5m 39s
  16. 10m 12s
    1. Exporting audio from Live
      6m 29s
    2. Freezing tracks
      3m 43s
  17. 42m 22s
    1. Exploring Impulse
      5m 5s
    2. Using Impulse as a multi-output instrument
      9m 15s
    3. Getting the most out of Impulse instrument parameters
      6m 23s
    4. Exploring Simpler
      7m 50s
    5. Smoothing sample start and end points in Simpler
      6m 32s
    6. Tweaking the parameters of Simpler
      7m 17s
  18. 36m 55s
    1. Unlocking the power of FX racks
      10m 48s
    2. Utilizing instrument racks
      10m 13s
    3. Creating drum racks
      9m 50s
    4. Working with rack macros
      6m 4s
  19. 10m 22s
    1. Introducing Max for Live
      4m 52s
    2. Exploring the Mono Sequencer in Max for Live
      5m 30s
  20. 5m 54s
    1. Working with video files
      5m 54s
  21. 24s
    1. Next steps
      24s

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