Ableton has announced the upcoming release of Live 12, a major update that should keep a wide range of musicians and producers happy with new MIDI tools, organisation techniques and even instruments.

Just in time for Black Friday comes an announcement we’ve all been looking forward to. It’s been nearly three years since the last major update, Live 11, and this one seems to hit many user requests. In particular, some new easy-to-use devices, better visual workflow (mixer and arrange window combined) better sound tagging, neat mixer additions and plenty more, as you would expect in a major announcement.

Here are some of the highlights:

What’s New in Live 12?

We had the good fortune to have a sneak peek and few weeks of working with this ahead of the announcement.

Playful Additions

MIDI Transformations and Generators

Create a variety of simple or complex variations to your MIDI clips. Add ornaments, connect successive notes and chords, simulate guitar strums, or pick from a set of generative algorithms to conjure up melodies, rhythms and chords that follow constraints you define.

MIDI Editor improvements

Rearrange the order of a selection of notes by pitch, velocity or duration. Stretch, split, chop or join notes in new ways; shape the velocity of notes more easily; transpose them into a scale; or add intervals chromatically or in key.

Keys and Scales

Choose a key in Live’s Control Bar to see its notes in any clip you create. Then edit clips using scale highlighting as a guide, use the clip scale to transform and generate musical ideas, or sync the scale of MIDI devices and instruments to the clip being played.

Tuning Systems

Work in tunings outside the 12-tone equal temperament system, and access them with Live’s devices as well as any MPE-capable plugin.

New Sounds

Meld

A bi-timbral, MPE-capable instrument designed for deep sound-shaping that generates a wide array of textural and experimental sounds with two easy-to-use macro oscillators.

Roar

Create everything from subtle and precise mastering-grade warmth to wild and unpredictable sound degradation with Live’s new coloring and saturation effect. Roar’s three saturation stages can be used in series, parallel, or even in mid/side and multiband configurations – and it comes equipped with an extensive modulation matrix.

Granulator III

The latest iteration of Robert Henke’s granular instrument now has MPE capability, giving you expressive control over parameters like note bend, vibrato and glissando. Plus, you can now capture audio in real time and start manipulating it immediately.

New Packs

Find new tricks for performing on the fly with the four Max for Live devices of Performance Pack. And explore unlikely instruments and unique foley recordings with the Lost and Found collection.

Work more intuitively

Stacked Detail Views

Get an overview of everything a track is doing at a glance: see your devices and the Clip Editor at the same time, as well as automation and device parameters, so you can focus on the track you’re working on without repeatedly switching between views.

View styling

Stay in the flow with Live 12’s cleaner, more modern look that removes visual complexity and keeps the focus on your music.

Mixer improvements

Live’s Mixer, previously available only in Session View, can now be used in Arrangement View. It also comes with improvements that make it more accurate for detailed mixing decisions, and easier to read and control.

Browser tagging

Use the included tags or custom ones to search for sounds without the constraints of the browser’s built-in categories.

Sound Similarity Search

Start with a sample and tell Live’s browser to find comparable sounds and instrument presets related to timbre.

Accessibility and navigation improvements

Control core workflows in Live 12 using assistive technologies like screen readers, and use new keyboard shortcuts to navigate to nearly every part of Live.

When is it out?

Ableton Live 12 will be available in early 2024.

A discount offer is running from now until the release of Live 12. During the promotion, all new Live 11 editions are 20% off. The purchase of any new Live 11 edition automatically entitles customers to a free upgrade to its corresponding Live 12 edition upon release.

Ableton Live 12 will be available for purchase from Ableton.com and, in some countries, through local retailers.

Ableton Live 12 will cost 79 EUR / 99 USD for Live Intro, 279 EUR / 439 USD for Live Standard and 599 EUR / 749 USD for Live Suite.

Existing Ableton Live owners should log in to their accounts to check upgrade pricing.

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Author Eric Brünjes
14th November, 2023

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