What can Ableton not do that other DAW's can and vice versa?
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Old 01-08-2015, 10:07 PM   #1
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What can Ableton not do that other DAW's can and vice versa?

I've read that people think that ableton is not a "real daw" and also that it's not the daw that makes the music, it's the artist. Now I left this all behind me and "focused on making the music" but then a real life friend brough up Ableton not being a "real daw" so I re-read some of the latest threads about it and I came across this article ([Only registered and activated users can see links. Click here to register]
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So I wonder, if the other curious fella's have done the nitty gritty already and figured out;

1. What ableton can't do
2. Why you decided on your daw
3. What and why you sacrificed the features of other daws to get anothers.

Lets focus on this NOT being "another comparison thread" because thats not what this is!

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Old 01-08-2015, 10:20 PM   #2
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Re: What can Ableton not do that other DAW's can and vice versa?

"While Ableton is a fantastic tool, its features seem more aimed at working with loops, soft synths, and remix-style re-arranging of clips and stuff. It falls a little behind Logic and especially Pro Tools when it comes to hard-core mixing features and dealing with the very high track counts you'd see in lots of pop productions, which often have hundreds of audio tracks once you've got massive stacks of vocal and drum tracks. Since lots of pop productions are taken from the producer's studio out into the outside world for overdubs and mixing, having the final multi tracks in Pro Tools makes them much more portable, compatible with other studios, and easier for mixers to deal with.

Ableton is a great writing tool, and one should definitely know how to drive it, so you won't be wasting your time learning it. It's great as a ReWire slave behind Logic or Pro Tools, where you can work with loops and stuff and then export or bounce what you've done in Ableton over into Logic or Pro Tools for further refinement and mixing.

I use it all the time this way, whether I'm working on song-style productions or composing film scores - but whatever I do in Ableton gets moved over to Logic for further arrangement and refining, and finally over to Pro Tools for mixing and transporting to the next stage."
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Old 01-08-2015, 11:33 PM   #3
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Re: What can Ableton not do that other DAW's can and vice versa?

My #1 reason for using Live is I can jam with it. I can loop a section in arrangement and switch over to using clips and totally just get lost in the music adding/duplicating tracks and building this thing up and it feels like a playground where the music never ends.

For everything it might be lacking it makes up for in allowing a person to keep the music going. To interact with it. It's like playing with lego .
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Old 01-09-2015, 12:56 AM   #4
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Re: What can Ableton not do that other DAW's can and vice versa?

Yeah see thats why i like it.

"When I create a simple song, routed in simple laws of music theory, maintaining a consistent key, with no accidentals, I've created a song that most people like... but personally, I do not, as it was just to easy to make... but when I create something based on the sounds of the notes/drum hits etc..., rather than the notes themselves, or perhaps no notes, just tuned/pitched drum sounds... I've created something that is truly my own... which I love greatly, but is seldom liked by others.... since I don't make a dime at music, I make what I want, how I want... if I needed to create music that would sell, than I'd stick to songs routed in theory... most likely in the key of A minor... because A minor sells "

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Old 01-11-2015, 02:18 PM   #5
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Re: What can Ableton not do that other DAW's can and vice versa?

The thing i hate about ableton is mixing. You can barely do any. I love consoles, but i don't personaslly have one and thats what gives FL an advantage over ableton.
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Old 01-12-2015, 08:27 AM   #6
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Re: What can Ableton not do that other DAW's can and vice versa?

Why can't you do mixing in ableton? Arrangement view is easy to navigate.
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Old 01-12-2015, 09:41 AM   #7
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Re: What can Ableton not do that other DAW's can and vice versa?

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Why can't you do mixing in ableton? Arrangement view is easy to navigate.
Or switch to Session and you've got a traditional mixer view.
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Old 01-12-2015, 12:20 PM   #8
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Re: What can Ableton not do that other DAW's can and vice versa?

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Originally Posted by scyn View Post
Or switch to Session and you've got a traditional mixer view.

not really. the traditional view of meter, fader, channel strip, input gain is missing. many rely on that visual. its really just a different way of doing things, but i can see why someone would rather mix in logic or pro tools.

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Old 01-15-2015, 03:40 AM   #9
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Re: What can Ableton not do that other DAW's can and vice versa?

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not really. the traditional view of meter, fader, channel strip, input gain is missing. many rely on that visual. its really just a different way of doing things, but i can see why someone would rather mix in logic or pro tools.
The UI might be a little different, but in no way does that make mixing easier or harder. It just means people who aren't used to that UI might need a bit of time to adapt (not necessarily a bad thing).
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Old 01-15-2015, 01:41 PM   #10
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Re: What can Ableton not do that other DAW's can and vice versa?

No no dudes, your going about it all wrong!

You are thinking about music production as one collected task,
while in reality it's more like five or six separate tasks.

There is pre production, where you come up with the idea, the basic layout for a new track,
and there is production, that is split in sound design and arrangement,
and also include filling inn the gaps, adding the little things.
and there is post production that is both editing and mixing.
And finally its mastering, which is a completely different thing.

And I don't understand why so many DAWs are trying to be best in everything,
because they fail so much in so many areas.
Maybe the exception is Pro Tools, that just comes out saying;
We might suck at most things, but hey we're really really good at recording and mixing.
And for that reason, Pro Tools is considered the primary choice for mixing engineers.

And to evaluate a software's strengths, one should not talk about what a software can or can not do.
It's a lot more valuable to consider how much time do you spend doing what you need to do,
and how much control do you loose in the process.

So maybe Abelton sucks really bad at mixing,
but I find it really good at the production side of things (maybe except recording).
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Old 01-15-2015, 02:18 PM   #11
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Re: What can Ableton not do that other DAW's can and vice versa?

Buzz can do these things, which Cubase can't:
- Buzz has genetic algorithms for randomizing, breeding and morphing presets (in any native machine/fx, VSTi and VST).
- Typesearch. In Buzz i can type "comp" and ALL compressors appear in a list. I can type "waves" and ALL plugins by Waves appear. I can just type one(1) letter, and all plugins/manufacturers/developers/effect-types that contain ths letter will pop up. It doesn't get any faster than that.
- Buzz has tons of generative composition tools and LFOs that can be connected anywhere. The germans at Steinberg are like SMH at this.
- Buzz is modular. I can route anything anywhere pretty much. Long chains of both parallel and serial processing is just a quick shift+click and drag.

But Cubase can do alot that Buzz cannot do. Win/win.

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Old 01-15-2015, 02:58 PM   #12
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Re: What can Ableton not do that other DAW's can and vice versa?

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Originally Posted by chasedobson View Post
not really. the traditional view of meter, fader, channel strip, input gain is missing. many rely on that visual. its really just a different way of doing things, but i can see why someone would rather mix in logic or pro tools.
Not to nitpick, but ableton does support dual monitors which makes it possible to see the faders and the arrangement at the same time.

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Old 01-15-2015, 03:07 PM   #13
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Re: What can Ableton not do that other DAW's can and vice versa?

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Not to nitpick, but ableton does support dual monitors which makes it possible to see the faders and the arrangement at the same time.
But not possible more than one device view (channel strip) at a time though,
and also no floating windows (detachable), and also no triple monitor support.
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Old 01-15-2015, 04:33 PM   #14
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Re: What can Ableton not do that other DAW's can and vice versa?

Yes, what a struggle.

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Old 01-15-2015, 04:39 PM   #15
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Re: What can Ableton not do that other DAW's can and vice versa?

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Yes, what a struggle.
It all adds up, all these small things.
You ever worked against a deadline, you know how those little things matter.
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Old 01-15-2015, 05:31 PM   #16
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Re: What can Ableton not do that other DAW's can and vice versa?

Can't do curved automation envelopes and that's annoying.
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Old 01-15-2015, 05:36 PM   #17
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Re: What can Ableton not do that other DAW's can and vice versa?

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Can't do curved automation envelopes and that's annoying.
That however, it can do.
Introduced in live 9. Hold down alt key to modify spline.

Though, I'm still waiting for a DAW to introduce bezier curves.
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Old 01-15-2015, 05:44 PM   #18
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Re: What can Ableton not do that other DAW's can and vice versa?

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Though, I'm still waiting for a DAW to introduce bezier curves.
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Old 01-15-2015, 07:21 PM   #19
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Re: What can Ableton not do that other DAW's can and vice versa?

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But not possible more than one device view (channel strip) at a time though,
and also no floating windows (detachable), and also no triple monitor support.
Ableton has two windows, what do you want on the third monitor? The mixer split across two? N st get a bigger monitor, right? I just think its funny they introduce dual monitor support finally and now people say they need three.

What's next, seven monitor support?

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Old 01-15-2015, 07:46 PM   #20
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Re: What can Ableton not do that other DAW's can and vice versa?

Albeit, I don't use it very often.
Mostly I'm just pushing vst's into one screen and use the 3rd for ref, lyrics, text notes.
I'd prefer to dedicate one screen to the track view,
and the device view/sample view and browser, groove on another.

edit: The reason for three is actually cost related, its more expensive with resolution than it is with a monitor.

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