Ableton + Launchpad vs. Maschine
Clonkified
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#1
29th June 2012
Old 29th June 2012
  #1
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Thread Starter
Ableton + Launchpad vs. Maschine

Hello,

I just recently bought Ableton Live 8 and a Launchpad. I also got nativeKontrol's LPC for the Launchpad which opens up a huge amount of functionality. I also am trying out midiKatapult for programming the Launchpad for use with other software (such as Geist).

Anyway, I have a Maschine Mikro, which is pretty cool, but for those that have experience with both Maschine and Live + controller, would be interested to know if you prefer the Maschine for anything? I'm thinking it has become redundant for me.

Thanks!
#2
29th June 2012
Old 29th June 2012
  #2
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Naugo's Avatar
 

Well there's a big difference because you have to use the maschine vst software, as opposed to ableton's drum racks, which was a deal breaker for me. I sold my maschine after realizing I couldn't live without the drum racks. If you like the integration then it's a really nice piece of hardware, has a good instrument feel to it. Much nicer than the build of the launchpad. It's just, does it help your workflow or hurt your workflow, that's the question.
Clonkified
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#3
29th June 2012
Old 29th June 2012
  #3
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Thread Starter
Thanks! Curious - how do you use drum racks specifically and what do they do in your flow over Maschine? I have heard of 128s and that sounds like a great way to integrate a bunch of samples. I don't have Sampler right now, so I've taken another approach of creating "kick" drum racks, "snare" ones, etc. - I think this also is beneficial because then I can swing the hats without touching the kicks for example (since I guess Live applies the groove to the entire MIDI clip, not just individual notes?).
#4
29th June 2012
Old 29th June 2012
  #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Myrok Rolles View Post
Well there's a big difference because you have to use the maschine vst software, as opposed to ableton's drum racks, which was a deal breaker for me. I sold my maschine after realizing I couldn't live without the drum racks..
Huh? Many people use Maschine and Ableton together. It's not an either/or thing. You don't have to use Maschine as a plugin to use both and you don't have to stop using Drum Racks either.
Clonkified
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#5
29th June 2012
Old 29th June 2012
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Thread Starter
Quote:
Originally Posted by deucetres View Post
Huh? Many people use Maschine and Ableton together. It's not an either/or thing. You don't have to use Maschine as a plugin to use both and you don't have to stop using Drum Racks either.
True you can have both, but my question was do you need both or does one replace the other for the most part (especially with the help of things like LPC)?
#6
29th June 2012
Old 29th June 2012
  #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clonkified View Post
True you can have both, but my question was do you need both or does one replace the other for the most part (especially with the help of things like LPC)?
Well, for me Maschine has entirely replaced Ableton Live for production duties. And for mixing and finishing up, I vastly prefer a proper DAW like Logic anyway and it couldn't be any easier to just export my arrangement from Maschine and drag straight into Logic.

Maschine is all about the close integration and the hands-on workflow. Using Live and Launchpad/APC40 still doesn't quite come close to those aspects of Maschine, even with custom scripts, as it will lack the total integration like Maschine which allows you to be mouse-free and even lets you turn off the computer screen if you want to.

Part of the beauty and workflow feel of Maschine is the disconnected feel it allows for. It gives you that focused feel by allowing to work so well from a centralized point with minimal deviation. Live + Launchpad/APC40 will still force you to click around with the mouse/trackpad quite a bit. The close integration between Maschine's hardware controller and its software allows it to have the hands-on workflow previously only found on standalone hardware that you just can't get with any other MIDI controller.

And there's actually a long list of what Maschine offers that you can't really do in Live. Here's a big one: You can't record real-time modulation (as in record your knob tweaks) in Live's Session View clips. Maschine has its own version of session view with scenes and clips with the huge advantage of being able to record modulation of almost everything as you turn the knobs in real-time.

Also, you can't do any of the following with Live only while looking at a controller no matter what controller you use: browsing/loading samples, navigating, sampling, slicing, zooming in and out of waveforms, applying dsp audio edits, opening/saving projects...etc. Maschine can do all of that just from the dedicated controller because of the way it's designed. Maschine has two LCD displays on the hardware itself that shows the names for the controls and things like actual waveforms, so you don't have to look at the computer screen at all if you don't want to. Even with something like the APC40, you're not going to get the level of visual feedback that you get on Maschine's dual displays showing device/parameter names and values anywhere else. This is also why Maschine excels as a general purpose MIDI controller due to the ability to customize the names of parameters and see what you're controlling directly on the hardware's displays. These little things do add up to a very unique experience that can feel like you're using hardware.

Maschine just goes way further in terms of the software/hardware relationship. For example, the 'undo' function. In Live, this is a keyboard shortcut. In Maschine it's on the hardware (via a 'shift + pad' combo) Now, you COULD map the 'undo' keyboard command to a MIDI controller in Live, but you'd need Bomes or some other layer of additional software to achieve it. And this is just the undo function: there are more complex operations available from the Maschine hardware that is just not possible in Live right now, although touchAble on iPad gets the closest in terms of total mouseless control of Live.

Live also doesn't have Maschine's tactile hardware x0x step sequencer with full visual feedback through backlit pads and dual displays, and its own version of Machinedrum-style step parameter locks. Irreplaceable for experimenting and coming up with stuff you would have never come up with otherwise.

Also Maschine lets you loop single or multiple scenes easily (and entirely from the dedicated hardware of course) which is like if Live could do Follow Action for scenes not just clips.

And Maschine's plugin automapping implementation effectively turns any VST/AU plugin instantly into hardware and is much more elegantly implemented and useful than what any MIDI controller is capable of. And if you have anything from Komplete 8 (Maschine comes with Komplete Elements for free), the integration is even closer.
#7
29th June 2012
Old 29th June 2012
  #7
Stabby Stabby
 
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Launchpad has no Velocity sensitivity, Maschines hardware can be used as a controller with velocity and you can use the sounds inside drum rack.
#8
30th June 2012
Old 30th June 2012
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deucetres View Post
Huh? Many people use Maschine and Ableton together. It's not an either/or thing. You don't have to use Maschine as a plugin to use both and you don't have to stop using Drum Racks either.
Right right, but to use the Maschine hardware the way it was meant to be used (meaning all functions work, groups, etc.) then you have to use the vst, but yea of course if you want to use drum racks then you can use it in MIDI mode, but then it's just a really expensive set of pads, or a $500 launchpad.

My point was that if you want to use it as a method of sequencing your drums you pretty much have to use the VST software, or else it's just a $500 set of midi pads.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BassDuck View Post
Launchpad has no Velocity sensitivity, Maschines hardware can be used as a controller with velocity and you can use the sounds inside drum rack.
Again, right, but then what do you have besides a $500 controller that transmits velocity? It would be smarter (assuming you want to use the drum racks) to lay out your scenes on the drum racks and then sequence from a launchpad.
Clonkified
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#9
30th June 2012
Old 30th June 2012
  #9
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Thread Starter
A padKontrol would be a much cheaper option if I just wanted the velocity-sensitive pads (although with LPC, I doubt I'll miss that). LPC also enables hardware step sequencing on the Launchpad (with LED feedback).

The question then sort of becomes Live vs. the Maschine software - the Maschine software is definitely much more integrated with the hardware, but with LPC, pretty much all the equivalent Maschine functions in Live can be done from the Launchpad. Ableton, although it is long in the tooth, still has more software features for the most part (apart from the real-time clip automation) - better MIDI editing, a full arrange view, warping, etc.
#10
30th June 2012
Old 30th June 2012
  #10
3 + infractions, forum membership suspended.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Myrok Rolles View Post
Right right, but to use the Maschine hardware the way it was meant to be used (meaning all functions work, groups, etc.) then you have to use the vst, but yea of course if you want to use drum racks then you can use it in MIDI mode, but then it's just a really expensive set of pads, or a $500 launchpad.

My point was that if you want to use it as a method of sequencing your drums you pretty much have to use the VST software, or else it's just a $500 set of midi pads.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Myrok Rolles View Post
Again, right, but then what do you have besides a $500 controller that transmits velocity? It would be smarter (assuming you want to use the drum racks) to lay out your scenes on the drum racks and then sequence from a launchpad.
No, you don't have to use Maschine as a plugin in order to use it with Live. Maschine is very flexible in that it accomodates many different workflow scenarios. You can for example use Maschine in standalone and drag and drop to Live, or sync Maschine standalone to Live via virtual MIDI ports.

Also, it's a quick button press to switch back and forth from Maschine mode to MIDI mode. And Maschine as a MIDI controller in MIDI mode is far more than just "a set of pads". The fact that you get visual feedback on the dual displays on the hardware itself sets it above most MIDI controllers. LPC does a lot but doesn't quite come close.
#11
30th June 2012
Old 30th June 2012
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clonkified View Post
The question then sort of becomes Live vs. the Maschine software - the Maschine software is definitely much more integrated with the hardware, but with LPC, pretty much all the equivalent Maschine functions in Live can be done from the Launchpad. Ableton, although it is long in the tooth, still has more software features for the most part (apart from the real-time clip automation) - better MIDI editing, a full arrange view, warping, etc.
It comes down to workflow preference. If you want to be pretty much completely mouse-free and/or don't want to have to stare at a computer screen all the time, then Maschine, no question. If you don't mind clicking around with a mouse and don't have a need to do realtime clip automation, then Live + Launchpad should be fine.
#12
4th July 2012
Old 4th July 2012
  #12
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quick thoughts...

1. LPC has a pretty good workaround for velocity on the launchpad. It works well for hihat parts. You can also use the LPC/Launchpad in tandem with another midi controller. I have a padkontrol also, but never rarely use it vs. the velocity drum mode in LPC.

2. You can actually record clip automation using a simple max4live plugin.

www.maxforlive.com - View Device Details

PLUS can also use Stray's ClyphX scripting to trigger virtually any type movement (midi, GUI keystroke, etc) as a clip.

The Beatwise Network - ClyphX for Live 8

Maschine seems great to bang something out on the quick fast. LPC can to that also plus way more. Feature wise, it's a whole lot deeper: Not only step drum sequencing, but 303 analog type sequencing, chopping/rearranging both MIDI and audio clips on the fly, scale mode, chord mode, etc.
#13
4th July 2012
Old 4th July 2012
  #13
www.KevWestBeats.com
 
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I am curious what does Maschine actually bring to the table when you are using Live besides a hardware feel that can probably be had with the APC or whatever?
#14
4th July 2012
Old 4th July 2012
  #14
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#15
6th July 2012
Old 6th July 2012
  #15
Banned
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Myrok Rolles View Post
Right right, but to use the Maschine hardware the way it was meant to be used (meaning all functions work, groups, etc.) then you have to use the vst, but yea of course if you want to use drum racks then you can use it in MIDI mode, but then it's just a really expensive set of pads, or a $500 launchpad.

My point was that if you want to use it as a method of sequencing your drums you pretty much have to use the VST software, or else it's just a $500 set of midi pads.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Myrok Rolles View Post
Again, right, but then what do you have besides a $500 controller that transmits velocity? It would be smarter (assuming you want to use the drum racks) to lay out your scenes on the drum racks and then sequence from a launchpad.
No, you don't have to use Maschine as a plugin in order to use it with Live. Maschine is very flexible in that it accomodates many different workflow scenarios. You can for example use Maschine in standalone and drag and drop to Live, or sync Maschine standalone to Live via virtual MIDI ports.

Also, it's a quick button press to switch back and forth from Maschine mode to MIDI mode. And Maschine as a MIDI controller in MIDI mode is far more than just "a set of pads". The fact that you get visual feedback on the dual displays on the hardware itself sets it above most MIDI controllers. LPC does a lot but doesn't quite come close.
#16
6th July 2012
Old 6th July 2012
  #16
Banned
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Clonkified View Post
The question then sort of becomes Live vs. the Maschine software - the Maschine software is definitely much more integrated with the hardware, but with LPC, pretty much all the equivalent Maschine functions in Live can be done from the Launchpad. Ableton, although it is long in the tooth, still has more software features for the most part (apart from the real-time clip automation) - better MIDI editing, a full arrange view, warping, etc.
It comes down to workflow preference. If you want to be pretty much completely mouse-free and/or don't want to have to stare at a computer screen all the time, then Maschine, no question. If you don't mind clicking around with a mouse and don't have a need to do realtime clip automation, then Live + Launchpad should be fine.
#17
6th July 2012
Old 6th July 2012
  #17
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#18
7th July 2012
Old 7th July 2012
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