Ableton LIVE 7 Now Shipping!!!
January 2008 Wired Magazine: David Byrne's Survival Strategies for Emerging Artists — and Megastars

Notes on Upgrading from Live 6 to Live 7 on Windows Vista

  • I just upgraded from Live 6 to Live 7 and wanted to pass on some notes and tips about my upgrade. I have plenty of VSTs Synths so I opted to upgrade just Live 7 and pass on a Suite. I was on the hunt for some fresh drum samples so I did add Drum Machines to my order.

LIBRARY CONVERSION

After downloading the 7 kit I ran setup. I was prompted to convert my version 6 library to version 7 and was warned that "older" versions might not work with the older library. Library conversion went well, and the install completed.

DRUM MACHINES

To install Drum Machines I had to download a separate .zip file. Within the .zip file there were separate files for each kit. This made installing Drum Machines much more time consuming than if there was some sort of unified installer.

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LIVE PACKS

After installing Live, it's always a good idea to check the Live Packs page http://www.ableton.com/livepacks to make sure you have the latest versions. I mention this because It's not an obvious step, and as you can see below, there are quite a few Live Packs updates for version 7. Again, I wish there was an option just to grab everything, as installing these one at a time took about a half an hour.

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TESTING PLAYBACK OF OLD SONGS

With everything installed I fired up Live 7 and started testing songs I'd done in 6. I randomly picked a half-dozen songs and all but one played back as expected. One song had a MIDI clip that played back differently than in 6. The Midi Track in question is driving an instance of Vanguard and the patch has extreme filter changes based on velocity. I think the cause is a new improvement in Live 7 - "The MIDI engine has been reworked, and we were able to significantly reduce timing error (jitter) of recorded MIDI". Clearly there is a slight difference in timing and velocity that is noticeable with this patch. I'm sure I'll be able to simply tweak notes to get things back in order. One quick workaround I came up with was to fire up Live 6 and resample the MIDI clip into an audio clip and save the set. I then created a new instance of the set in 7.

USER INTERFACE

One of my favorite things about Ableton is they don't radically change the user interface from one version to the next - 7 is no exception. The default color "skin" has changed slightly, and you if you miss the look of version 6, you can go into "Preferences->Look Feel" and set the skin to "Default 6".

CONCLUSION

While upgrading took a little longer than I thought, I had almost no problems. Watch for future posts on using some of the Live 7 new features.

LINKS

DEALS on Ableton from Musicians Friend

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