Join Yeuda Ben-Atar for an in-depth discussion in this video Utilizing alternative and DIY controllers, part of Ableton Live 9 for Live Performance.
In addition to commercial MIDI controllers, we can also use alternative controllers like the Monome. The Monome was the first grid controller design for music and media. All modern button matrix controllers like the APC40 and the Launchpad are based on its design. A few other boutique controllers are 60 Works, Moldover-MOJO, and DJ TechTools MIDI Fighter. Another option is to build your own controller like this one. It's important to note that this process might take some time and require knowledge in electronics and in some cases also experience with programming.
Finally, you can also take old video game controller and repurpose them to be used as MIDI controllers. If you look at the computer, you can see a Max for Live window, which is the visual programming language built into Live that allows us to build new devices and effects. In this case, I've created a converter that translates the messages the video game controller sends into MIDI. (music playing) Let's check another one.
(music playing) It's up to you to choose the controller that serves you best. With today's growing number of live computer musicians, I would recommend choosing a unique controller or maybe even build your own to help you stand out from other performers. So as you can see, there are many ways to control Ableton Live, with MIDI controllers, hand-built controllers, and even old video game controllers.
The next chapter focuses on deejaying with Ableton Live, and I'll start by giving you some tips for organizing your song library.
Along the way, Yeuda reveals many live performance tricks using control surfaces and custom MIDI controllers that he's built, plus tips for playing and syncing up with other musicians and recording your live performance.
- Using Ableton Live or third-party controllers
- Choosing songs for a DJ set
- Building your decks
- Using EQ and gain to emulate mixer hardware
- Knowing when to use headphones
- Mapping the crossfader, EQ, and gain to MIDI controllers
- Looping with Beat Repeat
- Setting up multiple instruments on one track
- Creating a bus track for master effects
- Preparing your original productions for the stage
- Using commercial and custom MIDI controllers
- Live looping and live sample cutting
- Recording your live performance