How To DJ with Ableton

There are many programs to choose from, but none of them are as good as Ableton Live.You can take DJing a step further with this software.A comprehensive overview of how to perform with Ableton will be contained in this step by step guide.Setting up your audio interface with Ableton, using grid based controllers to launch clips, and how Ableton’s session view is utilized to perform music in a live setting are included.

Step 1: Make sure your audio interface is configured correctly with Ableton.

The options are located near the top left corner.The default audio device on your computer is the soundcard, which needs to be changed to an external device.To open Ableton Live, connect your interface to a computer.The majority of interfaces will connect with a firewire connection.

Step 2: You can select your interface in Ableton.

Preferences > Audio.

Step 3: Select your audio interface from the drop down menu under the audio device section.

Pick the appropriate driver from the drop down menu if there is a driver associated with your interface.You can find the appropriate driver on the manufacturer’s website or in the instruction booklet that came with your interface.

Step 4: Select which ports you want to use.

You can do this by selecting Channel Configuration > Output Config.If you don’t want to cue tracks with headphones, the only output ports that need to be selected are mono and stereo.

Step 5: If your speakers are already connected, connect them to the interface.

A balanced cable connection is required for studio monitors.You will need to use either of the two cables.”DJ-with-Ableton-Step-5.jpg” is a small URL.

Step 6: Sound is coming through your monitors.

The master volume should be turned down.Press play if you want to engage the metronome.When you hear the tick of the metronome, slowly turn up your volume.Once you are satisfied with the volume, you can disengage the metronome.The stop button should be pressed.

Step 7: Plug your DJ controller into the computer.

An external power source is required for most controllers.

Step 8: If you have to, set your controller.

If your controller isn’t recognized immediately, it will need to be selected as a MIDI device.

Step 9: Midi/sync can be selected if you want.

Step 10: Under the list of control surfaces, select your device and verify that it has input and output.

There are many examples of controllers.Under the control surface drop down menu, the name of your device will be listed.Select your device.

Step 11: The screen should be open on the Session view.

Session view is the default view when you open Ableton.You should see a colored box if you are using a grid based controller.

Step 12: Populate the session with audio and/or clips.

Keeping each clip consistent will make it easier to perform.There are 4, 8, or 16 bars.Group similar clips together on the same track.).

Step 13: Songs are put into one block of clips.

There is a space between the clips.

Step 14: Attach the first scene launch button to each song.

You can simply change that button to your liking.To change the button, click (CTRL+R).The row of clips will be launched when you press the launch button.It will allow for quick and easy transitions between songs.

Step 15: Follow actions can be added to your clips.

Use shift and click to select a large amount of desired clips.The launch section of the clip is open.

Step 16: The next clip should be played after a desired amount of bars have passed.

After 8 bars have passed, set the follow action to take place.Pick the next action from the drop down menu.After the current clip has finished playing, this will play the next clip.

Step 17: There is a Limiter on the Master track.

Digital audio clipping will be prevented when you play your clips.Select audio effects on the left side of the screen.The Master channel has a Limiter on it.

Step 18: The clips are from the session view.

Click on it to start a clip.The scene launch button can be used to launch an entire row of clips.

Step 19: You can use your DJ controller to launch clips from different songs.

Launching clips will be very easy with grid based controllers.

Step 20: Effect racks can be used to experiment with different channels.

Under Audio Effects > DJ & Performance, Ableton has preset effect racks.The effect rack can be dragged onto the desired channel.DJ’s spend a lot of time beatmatching every track if they perform with Ableton.This makes it easy for the user to add live effects.