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Re: Ableton Live?

The "activating devices" issue is an important factor and the reason I
would chose using both Bidule and Mainstage as live looping host
before Ableton Live. In both these hosts two you may have tons of
effects cabled up in numerous alternative signal paths to switch
between during your concert, and all those alternative devices are
taken off the CPU load when not in use. Since I like to have a huge
palette of alternative effect chains this makes it an easy choice.
Live can't compete in this regard, but if you are not planning to use
a lot of sound patch live switching Live may be even more CPU friendly
for the few devices you chose to stick with, at least the latest

To continue the comparison, if intending to play with a lot of instant
switching between several alternative effect chains another important
factor is how your software takes care of preserving sounding tails
from the previous patch, when switching to a new patch. My experience
is that Bidule is just outstanding in this department. Given you use a
custom made Group that actively listens to the old patch and keeps it
open until the level has diminished under a specified threshold level.
Mainstage has a more rigid version of this; you can only set the
number of seconds to keep the previous signal path open when switching
to a new patch. When the specified time has passed it just closes by
brutal force. Can sound rather rude in a delicate musical situation.

One thing that Live does well is to play back pre prepared audio
files. But you need to be careful not to warp them ("warping" is what
Ableton calls it when audio is time-stretched for a tempo change)
because that changes the fidelity a lot. I will use Live for a concert
in January where eight surround channels will run pre prepared and two
musicians playing along in real-time. When I did this back in March I
used Logic. Logic is even more biased towards composition and studio
recording production, but you may use its Performances to set up
maximum 128 alternative Channel Strips, each one containing many
insert effects. To call up a new Performance you send in a MIDI
Program Change event into the computer. I have been using that system
for a year in a dual laptop setup where Logic 7 were slave sync
following another laptop running the Mobius looper as the tempo
master. MIDI Clock was used for sync but from Logic 8 this
synchronization system has been abandoned. I have also tried to use
Mainstage file player (called "Playback") for playing back eight long
files for octaphonia, but this crashed the application (hence the
earlier decision to use Logic)

The above findings are stuff that would have saved me a lot of
research time if someone had told me, so I hope it may help someone
else to find a useful solution with minimal hassle.

Greetings from Sweden

Per Boysen

On Thu, Nov 24, 2011 at 5:59 PM, Philip Conway
<Philip.Conway@bristol.ac.uk> wrote:
> 1. Looper doesn't crossfade at loop end/start so it's very difficult to
> prevent clicks (impossible if you're playing something continuous like
> ebowed guitar or whatnot).
> 2. Activating the device causes pops, clicks and other weirdness.  I've 
> not
> noticed sync issues but I'm prepared to believe it!