Ableton Users (Interface Related)

Discussion in 'Recording Gear and Equipment [BG]' started by Andrew.Glose, Jul 2, 2008.

  1. For all those who use Ableton Live as your recording software, which external audio interface do you use?

    I just bought a Presonus FireStudio Project Interface. I noticed that there are also external firewire mixers, with tangent faders, which are generally a lot more pricey (workstation interfaces).

    What are the pros/cons of using a simple interface vs a workstation interface? And which interface works well with Ableton (Live 7)?

    Any insight you can give me will be well appreciated.

  2. The interface is just there to manage input/output of audio and MIDI data. Once you get into faders and other controls you are talking about a control surface. Even if it is combined in one unit Ableton will make you assign audio and MIDI I/O separate from the control surface ("Remote" in Ableton Preferences).

    There are interfaces with no built in remote control ability, some like the Alesis that have both, and some like the Mackie and Behringer that are only control surfaces. I use a MOYU 896HD which is an interface, and a NI Audio Kontrol 1 which has both interface and control surface function but doesn't have much of either. The AK1 is great but it is a 2x4 interface with very few controls. They are well suited to controlling parts of Live during performance so it is a very useful little box.
  3. So say I invest in this:

    I can fade with it, and it'll simultaneously fade on the computer as well (in sync)? As in, I won't have to deal with the tangent fader AND the fader within the software, and them being treated as two separate things instead of one. Making any sense?

    Also, does anyone know if this Alesis MasterControl works well with Vista?

  4. Andrew, you really need to get out more :hyper:

    making sense? not really, but since you asked, the whole idea of a control surface is that the controls are mapped to the software controls. So moving a fader on the control surface causes the software fader to move. It automation support is there then the motorized fader on the control surface will move along with the software automation.

    Look for information on Mackie HUI compatibility, or HUI emulation. That should answer some questions.

    and... what the heck is a "tanget fader"? are you lying awake nights making up names for things?

  5. Haha, nah.

    I just don't know the proper terms for things like that, so I make it up (tangent fader = fader you can touch as opposed to software faders). But I'm getting it. Control Surface, HUI, DAW, all that stuff.


  6. D.A.R.K.

    D.A.R.K. Supporting Member

    Aug 20, 2003
    i'm using an rme fireface400 with faderfox modules and a novation remote le for midi control. i also used the fireface800, which is amazing, but switched to the 400 for portability.
    i've used motu 828, ultralite, digi002, ozone and edirol interfaces in the past. the rme interfaces are by far the best i've used
    (and the most expensive, go figure). excellent quality converters with which i could actually hear the difference, very stable at low latency settings (a must for real time processing and looping), plus the extensive jitter suppression and excellent software mixer.
    my second choice is definitely the motu products, really stable
    and very affordable.
    live will work well with most any interface that has decent up to date drivers,
    but i would suggest avoiding m-audio products(like the ozone i had), based on my experience, bandmates experience(fw410) and info from the live users forum (instability issues, poor latency).
    my only attempt at an all-in one controller/interface (ozone) was a complete fail, poor build quality and drivers. not to mention a hot-unplugging issue with that unit was causing dammage to peoples fw ports.
    having a dedicated interface allows you the flexibility to try multiple controllers until you find one that works for you....imho, that is just like finding a bass that you like.
    tons on the market, but which one will suit your workflow best?
    i also like the behringer bcr and bcf midi controllers, maybe the best for the money right now..