Alternative to ableton,

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
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jayce71
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Jan 27, 2019 4:42 pm

Alternative to ableton,

Post by jayce71 » Sun Jan 27, 2019 4:49 pm

I bought a M-audio keyboard for the kids at Xmas, not knowing it needed ableton to make it work.
I've dowloaded ableton, and for the past 6 weeks I've been trying to figure out what I'm supposed to do with it.
6 weeks on and I still haven't heard the keyboard make a sound,
I've tried watching tutorials, but they are all very vague and assume that you already know all about it.
even the begginers quide to ableton reqires a nasa degree to understand it.
even just trying to listen to guy who's head's all over the place gives me a headache.
so I've given up, and now seek an easier to use alternative.
without being biased towards ableton,
what are the alternatives?

[jur]
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Re: Alternative to ableton,

Post by [jur] » Sun Jan 27, 2019 5:09 pm

Have you tried the built-in lessons (it's in the Help menu)?
Did you already watched these videos? You can't really go more explanative.
If you still don't understand, maybe you're allergic to DAWs.
Ableton Forum Moderator

jayce71
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Jan 27, 2019 4:42 pm

Re: Alternative to ableton,

Post by jayce71 » Sun Jan 27, 2019 6:59 pm

How dare you try and calm me down and talk sense?
LOL
seriously I didn't know that,
for the record I'm an old dad who's trying to set this up for the kids.
I even have a launchpad to set up at the same time.
I've tried following the instrictions that came with it,
but got lost in the set up calibrating the keys,
it just became a mine field after that,
I've downloaed files after after file, even payed for stuff too,
Loopmasters dubstep, ableton live 10,and melodics,
but I don't have a how a clue how to use it,
I can use the melodics tutor,
but I have no idea how to make the keyboard into a Piano for example,
or the drumpad into a set of drums etc.
it's simple things like this that are a minefield to noobs like me.
I will look at the help section,
and thank you.

Angstrom
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Re: Alternative to ableton,

Post by Angstrom » Sun Jan 27, 2019 7:51 pm

Make drumpad into set of drums:

I assume you mean "load a drum kit and play it off the launchpad"
  1. Go to the Live browser and look in the Drums section
  2. Drag one of the listed items into the main Ableton view.
  3. you have now loaded a Drum Rack.
  4. Arm the track so that it accepts MIDI input by pressing the red circle button which is beneath the track's volume fader.
  5. press the launchpad User 1 Button
  6. Play drums on the Launchpad
If that doesn't work you have done something seriously wrong, or skipped the how to set-up lessons.

yur2die4
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Location: Menasha, Wisconsin
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Re: Alternative to ableton,

Post by yur2die4 » Sun Jan 27, 2019 8:28 pm

There are two approaches you can take here.

One of them is making sure that the keyboard itself is indeed connected and recognized by Live. If connected, you should see it in the Bottom half of the midi preferences. And you should turn Notes (or keys, but I think it’s called notes) turned On. If you see the keyboard listed but it is orange or yellow or some other warning color, then there may be a problem. I am assuming here that the keyboard is connected with USB. If it is connected, on the very top right, when you close Preferences, is a percentage indicator, but near that are also two little squares. If your keyboard is connected and Powered On (On means your LED illuminates or at the very least an LED changes if you hit the Octave buttons on your keyboard), then when you’re tapping keys on the keyboard, one of those squares in the very top right will blink as you press and release notes.

If all that is good, then you’re in luck. Everything WILL function properly once you get a better grasp of the program.

The next things you’ll be dealing with are audio driver setup (the other thing that could go wrong but most would expect to work right), and generally loading up and playing an instrument Device (which in itself might take a moment to get accustomed to)

To ensure that your AUDIO driver is at least somewhat functioning. Try going to the Audio tab of Preferences and turn on the TEST tone. If you hear a sound from your speakers or headphones, you are in a good position to go forward. If you can’t hear anything, you’ll have to take some steps to get that in working order before you’re able to consider beginning anything else.

If you reply to confirm that both of these are working, I’ll be happy to get you playing the piano sounds and am determined to help you and your family get rocking :)


kitekrazy
Posts: 731
Joined: Sat Jan 16, 2010 7:16 pm

Re: Alternative to ableton,

Post by kitekrazy » Sun Jan 27, 2019 9:03 pm

jayce71 wrote:How dare you try and calm me down and talk sense?
LOL
seriously I didn't know that,
for the record I'm an old dad who's trying to set this up for the kids.
I even have a launchpad to set up at the same time.
I've tried following the instrictions that came with it,
but got lost in the set up calibrating the keys,
it just became a mine field after that,
I've downloaed files after after file, even payed for stuff too,
Loopmasters dubstep, ableton live 10,and melodics,
but I don't have a how a clue how to use it,
I can use the melodics tutor,
but I have no idea how to make the keyboard into a Piano for example,
or the drumpad into a set of drums etc.
it's simple things like this that are a minefield to noobs like me.
I will look at the help section,
and thank you.
Have your kids try to figure it out.

ozinga
Posts: 21
Joined: Fri Mar 05, 2010 11:43 am

Re: Alternative to ableton,

Post by ozinga » Tue Jan 29, 2019 2:48 pm

jayce71 wrote:I bought a M-audio keyboard for the kids at Xmas, not knowing it needed ableton to make it work.
I've dowloaded ableton, and for the past 6 weeks I've been trying to figure out what I'm supposed to do with it.
6 weeks on and I still haven't heard the keyboard make a sound,
I've tried watching tutorials, but they are all very vague and assume that you already know all about it.
even the begginers quide to ableton reqires a nasa degree to understand it.
even just trying to listen to guy who's head's all over the place gives me a headache.
so I've given up, and now seek an easier to use alternative.
without being biased towards ableton,
what are the alternatives?
If I understand correctly you bought it thinking it has sounds like regular keyboards but in reality you bought a midi controller with no sounds.and dependent on a computer or other gear to play sounds on it. If all you want is to have a keyboard with sounds when you turn it on I would take it back and ask the sales person for something like that.

H20nly
Posts: 15836
Joined: Sat Oct 27, 2007 9:15 pm
Location: The Wild West

Re: Alternative to ableton,

Post by H20nly » Tue Jan 29, 2019 5:06 pm

kitekrazy wrote: Have your kids try to figure it out.
:lol: a$$

:wink:

jlgrimes
Posts: 1263
Joined: Mon Jan 22, 2007 1:55 am
Location: Atlanta, Ga

Re: Alternative to ableton,

Post by jlgrimes » Wed Jan 30, 2019 5:36 pm

jayce71 wrote:I bought a M-audio keyboard for the kids at Xmas, not knowing it needed ableton to make it work.
I've dowloaded ableton, and for the past 6 weeks I've been trying to figure out what I'm supposed to do with it.
6 weeks on and I still haven't heard the keyboard make a sound,
I've tried watching tutorials, but they are all very vague and assume that you already know all about it.
even the begginers quide to ableton reqires a nasa degree to understand it.
even just trying to listen to guy who's head's all over the place gives me a headache.
so I've given up, and now seek an easier to use alternative.
without being biased towards ableton,
what are the alternatives?

What exactly are you trying to do:

1. Produce/Record music
2. Play Keyboard Sounds (using M-audio controller).



You dont necessarily need Ableton for your Maudio controller. What you will need is some sort of synthesizer/sound generator to play sounds. These are usually VSTis, although there are various formats, VSTis are the most popular (and more universally supported). You also have standalone soft synths which aren't VSTis and can run outside of a VSTi host such as Ableton. It depends all on what synthesizers you have. Some synths are even external hardware devices which your Maudio device might still be able to play assuming it has midi ports. Your M-audio controller should communicate with your PC via the USB cable (depending on whether you are on Mac or PC, there are different methods for testing your connection). Usually the first step is making sure your M-audio controller (and audio interface or built-in audio drivers) are installed, up to date and working properly. Ableton itself has various tools for testing these connections as well.



Ableton is a VSTi host (albeit a great one), so it can load VSTis allowing you to play/record them. Ableton can also host other plugin formats (Audio Units if you have a Mac), and their own proprietary instrument devices (which can be designed by 3rd parties for free or commercial use using Max 4 Live). Ableton also supports external midi devices. What makes Ableton (or any other DAW) so complex is that they do a multitude of things and cater to a wide variety of users:

1. VST/VSTi host/midi device studio
2. Audio Recording/Editing
3. Audio Mixing/Mastering
4. live performances (loop triggering, synth playback, effects processor, recording shows)
5. Midi recording/editing


I probably still have covered everything but it helps to know what your goals are so you can get to solutions. I will say that although Ableton is complex, I think most people are attracted to it because it is also pretty simple/easy to use as well compared to other solutions. Once you know what you want, the solution is probably very easy or quick to do, if not a better recommendation can be made although if you got a copy of Live (which is an expensive program), it might be better to invest some time in it.


If alot of this stuff seems alien to you I suggest finding some tutorials on midi, VST technology, midi controllers, DAWs etc. It helps having a good "bird's eye" understanding of this stuff.

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