Ableton is one of the best music production software today. Its various packages come with an array of features
that enhance and strengthen music production. To get the most out of Ableton, you need to learn
a few tips and tricks. Below are 7 Ableton tips that can greatly transform your production experience and output.
1. Create Your Own Template
Some producers prefer beginning new projects from the default
Ableton template that features the 2MIDI and 2 Audio tracks. Working from
the default template will limit your choices when you are into the production.
That is why the experts start new projects from their own
templates. You should adopt the expert approach. Preparing your own template
gives you more room to maneuver. You can discern how the production will look
like in the end and you don’t need to worry where a given element will go or
even what color scheme to use. In the end, using your own template saves you
2. Use the Same Way to
Process Multiple Groups
For the best results, process multiple groups in one way. This can be done using a bus.
Just create an audio track then turn its Input Monitoring on. Once this is
done, send the output of the groups you want processed to the audio track. Next
add all needed effects to the audio channel that is acting as a bus. All the effects
will be added to each group being passed through the bus.
3. Check Mono and Low End
Compatibility of Your Tracks
It is very important to always check the low end and mono compatibility of your tracks. Let us suppose you are
working on a heavy bass track and would like to find out what is happening in
the low end of the track. You can do this by adding a Low Pass Filter/ High Cut
anywhere between 90 to 100 Hz on the Master Channel, and then map the EQ’s
on/off switch to a number key. When this
is all set up, if you want to check what is going on in the low end, you just
press the specified key.
To check the mono compatibility of a track, add a Utility effect to your Master
Channel and bring down the width to 0%. Just
like with the EQ, remember to specify a number key to its on/off switch.
4. Rank the Audio Effects
Ranking the audio effects you use is an excellent way to increase the rate of your workflow. It also helps you
stay on track. When audio effects are ranked, you will easily tell which ones
you use frequently. By default, the audio effects in Ableton are usually displayed
by their Type.
5. Test Tracks in Different Conditions
Use different audio effects to replicate how a track will sound in various environments. Add
racks to the master channels then map their on/off switch to different number
keys. This will help you identify how the track will sound in different environments
such as inside a club, on a computer speaker, home theater system, etc.
6. Never Solo a Track When Mixing
Some producers think it is okay to use the solo feature when making various adjustments. Let us suppose you are
adding a compression or a distortion to a given element or track. If you use
the solo feature while making these adjustments, the whole track will sound too
loud. The best option therefore is to make adjustments when the whole track is playing. The solo feature should only
be used when it is absolutely necessary.
Effects that are not in Use
Enough CPU space is needed for optimum work flow. One of the ways to increase CPU space is by freezing
tracks. Another trick is to deactivate any effects that you are not using. It
is important to mention that some effects must be on throughout the production
process. Having ample CPU space will increase efficiency.
They say that practice makes perfect. This is very true when
it comes to music production. Software products such as Ableton can greatly enhance your music production work when
you know what various features offer. It is therefore important to keep on
learning and practicing. There are numerous video tutorials you can watch to learn how to use the various Ableton packages.