Ableton Live CLOUD Archives

Ableton Live CLOUD Archives

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  • Are there any advanced search options?

    + Get answer

    You can access the advanced search options by clicking the settings button on the right side of the search bar.

    You can also use the advanced search option manually by using the following syntax.

    • Using the minus sign (-) in front of a word, excludes results containing that word.
    • Using quotes around a phrase (“cat meow”) searches for that exact phrase.
    • Writing the name of a library, followed by a colon (golden era library: cat) searches for that word only in that library.

    By default, Soundly will use its inbuilt thesaurus to search for sounds with similar names used in the search phrase. You can disable this option in window->settings under the search header.

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  • Can I share a collection?

    + Get answer

    Yes you can share collections. The person you share it with must also have access to the files to see them

    1. Right-click the collection you wish to share.
    2. Click Share

    Email

    Fill out the email address and set user rights for the collection you wish to share. If you wish to edit an already existing user

    1. Scroll down to the next window Users in collection.
    2. Select the user(s) you wish to edit.
    3. Scroll further down to Edit User.
    4. Set desired rights and click Update User(s), or Click Remove user(s) if you wish to remove users from the collection.

    Contacts

    Edit or select already existing contacts rights to manage and add sound effects to a collection

    1. Select user(s) and set rights.
    2. Click Add User(s).

    If you wish to edit an already existing user

    1. Scroll down to the next window Users in collection.
    2. Select the user(s) you wish to edit.
    3. Scroll further down to Edit User.
    4. Set desired rights and click Update User(s), or click remove user(s) if you wish to remove users from the collection.

    Organization

    Select users within the organization and set user rights to use a collection.

    1. Click Add User(s) to collection.

    If you wish to edit an already existing user:

    1. Scroll down to the next window Users in collection.
    2. Select the user(s) you wish to edit.
    3. Scroll further down to Edit User.
    4. Set desired rights and click Update User(s), or click remove user(s) if you wish to remove users from the collection.
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  • Can I upload files to the cloud?

    + Get answer

  • Can several people be signed in as the same user?

    + Get answer

  • Can Soundly spot to Cubase?

    + Get answer

    Yes. If you spot a selection, the sound effect will transfer with handles. If you wish to spot a selection or a whole sound effects to a marked track in Cubase, where the cursor is located, follow these steps:

    1. Select the sound effect in Soundly.
    2. Mark selection (if desired).
    3. Press s on your keyboard.
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  • Can Soundly spot to Logic Pro?

    + Get answer

    Yes. If you spot a selection, the sound effect will transfer with handles. If you wish to spot a selection or a whole sound effects to a marked track in Logic Pro, where the cursor is located, follow these steps:

    1. Select the sound effect in Soundly.
    2. Mark selection (if desired).
    3. Press s on your keyboard.
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  • Can Soundly spot to Nuendo?

    + Get answer

    Yes. If you spot a selection, the sound effect will transfer with handles. If you wish to spot a selection or a whole sound effects to a marked track in Nuendo, where the cursor is located, follow these steps:

    1. Select the sound effect in Soundly.
    2. Mark selection (if desired).
    3. Press s on your keyboard.
    spottingOpen a sharable link for this question
  • Can Soundly spot to Pro Tools?

    + Get answer

    Yes. If you spot a selection, the sound effect will transfer with handles. If you wish to spot a selection or a whole sound effects to a marked track in Pro Tools, where the cursor is located, follow these steps:

    1. Select the sound effect in Soundly.
    2. Mark selection (if desired).
    3. Press s on your keyboard.
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  • Can Soundly spot to Reaper?

    + Get answer

    Yes. If you spot a selection, the sound effect will transfer with handles. If you wish to spot a selection or a whole sound effects to a marked track in Reaper, where the cursor is located, follow these steps:

    1. Select the sound effect in Soundly.
    2. Mark selection (if desired).
    3. Press s on your keyboard.
    spottingOpen a sharable link for this question
  • Do you give a discount to educational institutions?

    + Get answer

  • Do you give a discount to students?

    + Get answer

  • Does Soundly support Apple Silicon and the M1 chip?

    + Get answer

  • Does Soundly support the Universal Category System (UCS)?

    + Get answer

    Soundly reads UCS files and has built-in tools to rename your own files to the UCS file naming system.

    The Soundly Pro Library is moving towards becoming fully UCS compliant.

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  • Does Soundly work with macOS Big Sur?

    + Get answer

    Yes, Soundly works with all versions of macOS from 10.10 until the most recent version. It also works well with Apple silicon and the M1 chip through Rosetta 2.

    The legacy version of Soundly works with MacOS 10.6 to 10.9 and is available here.

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  • How can I index private sound effects in my local Soundly library?

    + Get answer

    You can index sound effects from your computer, external storage device, or your local network by dragging and dropping file(s) or folder(s) over Soundly. This does not mean that you physically upload the files; it means that Soundly indexes them to the search function, so they are easy to locate, along with the sound effects from the Soundly Pro library. If you have your sound effects stored on an external storage device, you’ll still need to have this connected to your computer.

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  • How can I limit my sound effects search to one or several specific libraries?

    + Get answer

    1. Go to Sounds panel.
    2. On the left next to the Cloud button or Local button click the right pointing arrows. You can now see all of your local and cloud based libraries.
    3. Uncheck or check libraries you wish to search.
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  • How do I get started on OS X?

    + Get answer

  • How do I get started on Windows?

    + Get answer

  • How do I register?

    + Get answer

    1. Open Soundly.
    2. Click Register.
    3. Type in your email and desired password, read and agree to the EULA.
    4. If you have received a promotion code, select this option (you’ll know if you have one).
    5. Click Select Subscription.
    6. Select subscription: Free, 24hr Pass or Pro Monthly.

      • Billing details and Payment: If you have selected a subscription with fee (24hr Pass or Pro Monthly):
      1. Fill out your Billing details.
      2. Click Payment.
      3. Fill out your credit or debit card information.
      4. Click Purchase.
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  • How do I share a library?

    + Get answer

    1. Go to Sounds.
    2. Click the right pointing arrow to the left for Cloud.
    3. Right-click the private cloud library you would like to share.
    4. Click Share
      • Email

        Fill out the email address and set user rights for the library you wish to share. If you wish to edit an already existing user:

      1. Scroll down to the next window Users in library.
      2. Select the user(s) you wish to edit.
      3. Scroll further down to Edit User.
      4. Set desired rights or remove user(s). * ## Contacts Edit or select already existing contacts rights for access and uploading to a private library:

      5. Select user(s) and set rights.
      6. Click Add User(s).

      If you wish to edit an already existing user:

      1. Scroll down to the next window Users in library.
      2. Select the user(s) you wish to edit.
      3. Scroll further down to Edit User
      4. Set desired rights or remove user(s).
    • Organization

      Select users within the organization and set user(s) rights. If you wish to edit an already existing user:

      1. Scroll down to the next window Users in library.
      2. Select the user(s) you wish to edit.
      3. Scroll further down to Edit User.
      4. Set desired rights or remove user(s).
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  • How do I unsubscribe?

    + Get answer

    To cancel your subscription, you can go to user -> profile in the Soundly software.

    If you don’t have access to the Soundly software, you can Contact us with your account email, and we can cancel the subscription for you.

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  • How do I upload libraries to my private cloud?

    + Get answer

    When you drag files or folders over the Soundly interface, you will see an option whether to upload to your private cloud, or index your local stored sound effects. Select the Cloud option.

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  • How do I use Cloud Bridge

    + Get answer

    Using a shared folder between an online and offline system Soundly can push files from Soundly running online to Soundly running offline. A typical workflow will be Soundly running on an online laptop, e.g., the “email machine” in the studio, sending files to the offline editing system.

    To use the Cloud Bridge feature:

    • Go to Settings and press Cloud Bridge for Offline Systems in the Offline area.
    • Set the respective machines to send or receive files, and Start Cloud Bridge
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  • I will suspend my subscription for a while. Will my playlists, library-selections and settings be the same when I continue my subscription

    + Get answer

  • There is no sound. Why?

    + Get answer

    1. Go to Settings.
    2. Locate the menu for Audio.
    3. Ensure that you have the correct Output Device selected:
    • If you are using your computer’s output: Select Built-in Output.
    • If you are using external hardware as output: Select the hardware you are using.

    Some audio applications will take exclusive control of an audio device’s drivers so that other apps can’t play any sound at the same time. To disable exclusive mode:

    1. Right-click on the speaker icon in the system tray and select Open Sound settings.
    2. Select Sound Control Panel on the right hand side.
    3. Select the device you want to listen to and click Properties
    4. Under the Advanced tab, uncheck Allow applications to take exclusive control of this device.
    5. Click OK to save your device’s settings.

    If you are a Pro Tools user, see When is Rewire a necessity?

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  • What is collaboration space?

    + Get answer

  • What is the price for a multi-user subscription?

    + Get answer

  • What operating systems does Soundly support?

    + Get answer

    On Mac Soundly requires OS X 10.10 Yosemite or later (including Catalina). For OS X 10.9 and older, you can download the legacy version here.

    On Windows Soundly requires Windows 7 or later. If you are running a pre Windows 7 system, download the Windows legacy version here.

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  • What shortcuts are available in Soundly?

    + Get answer

    • CMD = Command button on OS X
    • CTR = Control button in Windows

    General Shortcuts

    • Play/Pause = Spacebar
    • Open In External Editor = ALT+S / OPT+S
    • Go To Search Bar & Clear Text = CTRL+F / CMD+F
    • Go To Search Bar & Keep Text = ALT+F / OPT+F
    • Flag File = F
    • Send Flagged Files To DAW = ALT+S / OPT+S
    • Add File To Recent Collection = C
    • Toogle Play Loop = CTRL+Shift+L / CMD+Shift+L
    • Shuffle Search Results = CTRL+L / CMD+L
    • Volume Nudge Up = CTRL+Up / CMD+Up
    • Volume Nudge Down = CTRL+Down / CMD+Down
    • Pitch Nudge Up = ALT+Up / OPT+Up
    • Pitch Nudge Down = ALT+Down / OPT+Down
    • Normalize = CTRL+N
    • Toogle Thesaurus = CTRL+Alt+T / CMD+OPT+T
    • Toogle Window On Top = CTRL+Shift+T / CMD+Shift+T
    • Collapse Folder = Alt+X / OPT+X
    • Show File (Windows: Show File In Explorer / Mac: Show File In Finder) = CTRL+Shift+R / CMD+Shift+R
    • Browse Folder Of Selected File = CTRL+Shift+F / CMD+Shift+F
    • Rename File = CTRL+E / CMD+E
    • Edit Metadata = CTRL+T / CMD+T
    • Pay Yourself A Compliment = CTRL+Shift+Alt+C / CDM+Shift+Alt+C
    • Open Cheatsheet = CTRL+Shift+Alt+O / CMD+Shift+Alt+O
    • Add Santa Hat To Icon = CTRL+Shift+Alt+I / CMD+Shift+Alt+I
    • Open Spookly = CTRL+Shift+Alt+S / CMD+Shift+Alt+S

    Waveform shortcuts

    • Select Whole Waveform = Ctrl+A / CMD+A
    • Modify Selection = Shift+Mouseclick in waveform
    • Clear selection = Double click waveform
    • Reverse = CTRL+R / CMD+R
    • Normalize = CMD/CTR+N
    • Zoom In Horizontal = T
    • Zoom Out Horizontal = R
    • Zoom In Vertical = Shift+T
    • Zoom Out Vertical = Shift+R
    • Copy In and Out Markers = ALT+C
    • Paste In and Out Markers = ALT+V
    • Go To Next Transient = Tab
    • Invert Stereo = CTRL+I / CMD+I

    Channel selection

    • Sum To Mono = M
    • Left to Mono = CMD/CTR+Arrow left
    • Right to Mono = CMD/CTR+Arrow right
    • Solo Channel = ALT+1 for channel 1, ALT+2 for channel 2, etc.
    • Mono to Stereo = J

    Switch between different library selections

    If you have saved selections of different libraries, you can see the shortcuts to the selections next to the selection title when clicking the three dotted library menu button. Example as seen in the menu:

    • Bang CMD/CTR+1
    • Rain CMD/CTR+2
    • Cars CMD/CTR+3

    Shortcuts when using Pro Tools, Reaper or Logic

    If you wish to send a selection or a whole sound effects to a marked track in your DAW where the cursor is located:

    1. Select desired sound effects in Soundly.
    2. Mark selection (if desired)
    3. Press s on your keyboard.

    If you wish to send sound effects to the Pro Tools Bin (region list):

    1. Select desired sound effects in Soundly.
    2. Press b on your keyboard.
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  • What software does Soundly support?

    + Get answer

    Software that works with Soundly includes, but is not limited to:

    • Premiere
    • PreSonus Studio One
    • Pro Tools
    • Nuendo
    • Reaper
    • Final Cut
    • FL Studio
    • DaVinci Resolve
    • Ableton Live
    • Cubase
    • Logic Pro
    • Cakewalk
    • Reason
    • Mixcraft
    • Bitwig Studio
    • GarageBand
    • Audacity

    All other software that supports Drag&Drop is supported by Soundly.

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  • Where is my local library database stored?

    + Get answer

    OS X:

    1. Go to Finder.
    2. Press CMD+Shift+g on your keyboard.
    3. Copy and paste “~/Library/Application Support/Soundly/" into the input field
    4. Go. The file name is LocalFilesDB.

    Note CMD = Command button in the CMD+Shift+g.

    The full path to the file is "Users/[Your User]/Library/Application Support/Soundly"

    In Finder, you can also select Go in the menu bar, and select Open in Finder.

    Windows

    1. Go to Users/[Your User]/Soundly Data/ The file name is LocalFilesDB.

    Do you have other questions? Email us at [email protected]

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  • Why doesn't drag & drop work for me?

    + Get answer

    The two most common issues when the drag and drop-feature doesn’t work are:

    1. In Windows Soundly needs to run with the same permission level as the corresponding program you wish to drag and drop to. Try changing the permission level for Soundly on Window to Administrator. If Soundly is already running as Administrator, try changing it to User.

    2. Soundly does not have permission/ability to save copies at the designated storage location Go to Window -> Settings -> Audio Storage Location in the Soundly software, and try changing the audio storage to a different folder.

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  • Why is Soundly Muted while Simulaniously Running a DAW

    + Get answer

    Sometimes audio applications take exclusive control of an audio device’s drivers, potentially blocking Soundly’s output. This is known as “Exclusive-Mode, and you bypass it by:

    1. Right-clicking the speaker icon in the system tray and select Playback devices
    2. Select the device you want to use and click Properties.
    3. Under the Advanced tab, uncheck Allow applications to take exclusive control of this device.
    4. Click OK to save your device’s settings.
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  • As a multi-user admin, how can I set users data upload limitations?

    + Get answer

    1. Go to Multi-user Admin.
    2. In the bottom of the menu, select user by switching the person On.
    3. In the menu above you can edit data limitations in Set Storage enter value.
    4. Click Update.
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  • As a multi-user, how can I add users?

    + Get answer

    Go to Multi-user Admin. You can either:

    Option A

    1. Switch OnAdvanced Promo Code Options.
    2. Click Generate new.
    3. Click Copy to clipboard.
    4. Paste the code in an email.
    5. Send it to the user and let this person do the rest of the registration.

    Option B

    1. Scroll down to the next menu in the Multi-user Admin menu.
    2. Type email, password and define the users role.
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  • Can I connect to my shared network database when I am on an external network?

    + Get answer

    Soundly can browse, audition, and transfer sound clips from collections stored on remote servers and NAS disks. You can share your collection from home or work and access it anywhere in the world. To prepare a collection for sharing, Soundly must create a database file and index the library on the local machine.

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  • Can I use the sounds in a video game?

    + Get answer

    The sounds in the Soundly Pro and Soundly Free libraries are cleared for commercial use, including video games. Games created while subscribing to Soundly Pro stay cleared even if you end your subscription.

    If you add the Freesounds library, be sure to choose CC0-only to only see the sounds which are available for commercial use and that do not require attribution. If you already have added the library, you can choose CC0-only by right-clicking on the Freesounds library in the sounds panel within Soundly

    All other add-on libraries are cleared for commercial use.

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  • Can I use the sounds in Soundly commercially?

    + Get answer

    The sounds in the Soundly Pro and Soundly Free libraries are cleared for commercial use. Any projects created while subscribing to Soundly Pro stay cleared even if you end your subscription. This includes, but is not limited to: podcasts, films, video games.

    The sounds must be used as part of a project with other media. That means that you can not resell the sounds, either as is, or modified.

    If you add the Freesounds library, be sure to choose CC0-only in order to only see the sounds which are available for commercial use and do not require attribution. If you have already added the library, you can choose CC0-only by right-clicking on the Freesounds library in the sounds panel within Soundly

    All the other add-on libraries are cleared for commercial use.

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  • How can I add a library from the store to my libraries?

    + Get answer

    1. Go to Store.
    2. If you wish to add a free library, click Add on the right of the desired library.
    3. If you wish to purchase a library, click Purchase on the right of the desired library. Payment goes through Soundly.
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  • How can I add sound effects to a collection?

    + Get answer

  • How can I find sound libraries in the store?

    + Get answer

  • How can I manipulate sound effects?

    + Get answer

    1. Select the sound effect you’d like to change.
    2. In the waveform window click the three dotted menu button.
    3. Here you can:
      • Select all/clear selection
      • Reverse
      • Invert stereo (switch around L with R),
      • Normalize
      • Convert to mono (either the sum of L & R or L or R).
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  • Can I use the sounds in the Freesound add-on library commercially?

    + Get answer

    The Freesound library contains sounds with mixed licenses for commercial use. If you intend to use the sounds commercially, make sure to choose the CC0-license option when adding the Freesound add-on library. This can be done at any time by right-clicking the Freesound library in the Sounds-tab and choose ‘Creative Commons 0 only’.

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  • How do I add sound effects to my shared network database libraries?

    + Get answer

    Add a folder to the shared network database:

    1. Drag the folder into Soundly
    2. Drop the folder into the Network area of the prompt

    Add sounds to an existing shared network database folder.

    1. Place files or folders in the existing shared network database folder.
    2. Right-click the shared network database in the Sounds tab
    3. Click Scan for new files. The database is updated, and new material is indexed and available.
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  • How do I connect to a shared network database?

    + Get answer

    First you need to make sure you have a storage device on you local network containing a Soundly database folder:

    1. Click File in Soundly’s application bar menu.
    2. Click Connect to shared network database.
    3. Select folder by clicking the folder icon in Select folder.
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  • How do I reset or change my password?

    + Get answer

    If you are signed in to Soundly and would like to make changes in your user account, but have forgotten your password:

    1. Click your email address in the top right corner.
    2. Click Log out.
    3. Click Sign in.
    4. Type in email and a wrong password.
    5. Click OK in the wrong password message window.
    6. Click Forgot your password? Click here to reset password
    7. Follow further instructions.

    If you are not signed in and got a “wrong password” message:

    1. Click Forgot your password? Click here to reset password.
    2. Follow further instructions.
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  • How do I set up a shared network database?

    + Get answer

    First you need to have a storage device with sound effects connected to your local network and viewable from your computer. The libraries you wish to create must be in folders.

    1. Click File in Soundly’s application bar menu.
    2. Click New shared network database.
    3. Select the sound effects folder on your network storage device by clicking the folder icon in Select database location.

    If you already have set up a local database via Networking in settings and you wish to add this database to your shared database switch on Duplicate local database. With this setting on, selected users will have access to a pre-indexed library with the possibility to add or delete material.

    If you wish to have password protection on your shared network database switch on Password protect and select password.

    If you wish to have control over the administration of your shared network database switch on Restrict editing. You can add admins if you wish to have several users in control.

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  • How do I sign up to the multi-user subscription?

    + Get answer

  • Someone shared a library with me. How can I view it?

    + Get answer

  • What are the benefits with the multi-user subscription

    + Get answer

    With a multi-user subscription, your company or studio can manage several user accounts with one or several admin accounts. In the multi-user admin panel, you can control user access to Soundly’s sound effects cloud. You’ll also get access to private cloud storage, so that your company or studio can upload your libraries and share them with your users. Contact us for pricing. We offer attractive discounts for multi-users.

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  • What are the differences between Cloud and Local library?

    + Get answer

    Cloud

    Library access include Soundly’s library, add-ons, and uploaded private libraries.

    Local

    Libraries are stored on your computer, external storage device or local network.

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  • What are the differences between the subscriptions?

    + Get answer

    Free

    • Access to 400+ sound effects in the Soundly-cloud.
    • Soundly can index 2,500 local sound effects (on your computer, external storage device or local network).
    • No Shop add-ons.

    24hr Pass

    • 24 hours access to the Soundly Pro cloud sound effects library.
    • Soundly can index an unlimited number of local sound effects (on your computer, external storage device or local network).
    • Free Shop add-ons.
    • Paid Shop add-ons.

    Pro Monthly

    • Continuous monthly access to the Soundly Pro cloud sound effects library.
    • Soundly can index an unlimited number of local samples (on your computer, external storage device or local network).
    • Free Shop add-ons.
    • Paid Shop add-ons.
    • 10GB of collaboration space in the Soundly Cloud.

    Multi-user subscription

    • Continuous access to the Soundly Pro cloud sound effects library.
    • Soundly can index an unlimited number of local samples (on your computer, external storage device or local network).
    • Free Shop add-ons.
    • Paid Shop add-ons.
    • Upload your libraries and give all your users access to them in the cloud. Pricing depends on storage requirements
    • Admin and user account management.
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  • What IP addresses, ports, and domains does Soundly need to access?

    + Get answer

    Soundly runs on Google’s infrastructure, and it is making all requests over HTTP (https) using port 443 and port 80.The IP-ranges are available here. If your setup allows opening up for domains, Soundly needs access to appspot.com and storage.googleapis.com There is also an option to connect to an alternative server. To connect to the alternative servers, go to Window->Settings in Soundly, and toggle the Connect to alternative Soundly server option in the Networking area. The URL to the alternative server is soundly.cloud

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  • What is Dock-mode?

    + Get answer

    Dock-mode places the Soundly interface on the bottom on the screen. When enabled, only the necessary tools for a good workflow are clickable: the searching tool, search result, and the waveform frame with editing tools.

    If you wish to go to Settings or Store click Undock and you see the standard view.

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  • When is using Rewire necessary?

    + Get answer

    If you are using Pro Tools, you might be using hardware that support sound to Pro Tools exclusively. Then you’ll need Propellerhead’s Rewire.

    Soundly now also has a custom AAX monitor plugin, which we recommend using instead of ReWire. It comes pre-installed in Windows and can be installed in settings on OS X.

    MacOS

    1. Go to Settings.
    2. Scroll down to the bottom of the interface.
    3. Locate the menu Rewire.
    4. Click Install.
    5. Restart Soundly.
    6. Go to Settings.
    7. Locate the menu for Audio.
    8. Select Rewire as output in Output Device.
    9. Go to Pro Tools.
    10. Select Rewire as input source for desired listening track or AUX.

    Windows

    If you are a Windows user, Rewire is already installed in Soundly:

    1. Go to Settings.
    2. Locate the menu for Audio.
    3. Select Rewire as output in Output Device.
    4. Go to Pro Tools
    5. Select Rewire as input source for desired listening track or AUX.
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  • Are the local sound effects in my library available to other users?

    + Get answer

  • Can I connect to my shared network database while I am on an external network?

    + Get answer

    Yes, you can if the database is located on a network drive that is mountable over HTTP. Most NAS and server systems support this. Soundly supports common protocols like WebDAV and SMB. Instructions on using WebDAV are available within the Soundly app under Database -> Connect to remote sound library

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  • Does Soundflower work with Soundly?

    + Get answer

    Yes. You can route audio to sequencers with Soundflower as an output device. Here’s how:

    1. Go to Settings.
    2. Locate the menu for Audio.
    3. If you have Soundflower installed you should see it as an optional output device.

    Note: Soundflower is only available for OS X. There are other options for Windows, but we haven’t tried any out.

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  • How can I save a selection of libraries that I often use?

    + Get answer

    1. Check the desired combination of libraries that you wish to save.
    2. Click the three dotted menu button at the top of the list of libraries.
    3. Click Save Selection and enter a name.
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  • How can i save my local database directly on my sfx-hard drive?

    + Get answer

    In settings under Local Database, click on “New.” Set the database file where you would like it, i.e., on your external drive. Index your files, and you’re good to go. If you want to connect to this database from another computer, click the folder icon under “Local Database” in settings and select the database.

    Open a sharable link for this question
  • How can I use Soundly on an offline computer?

    + Get answer

    Soundly also works great in an offline environment, and an offline license is synced to your computer every time you go online. To enter offline mode, do the following. Click User in the application menu bar. Click Offline mode. You’ll now have access to your indexed local sound effects.

    For computers that are always offline, you can import an offline license file. You can either export this from Soundly running on a computer with an internet connection or get in touch with us, and we can generate a license for you.

    To export an offline license:

    • Go to Settings
    • Click Export Offline license in the Offline area

    To import an offline license:

    • Go to Settings
    • Click Import Offline license in the Offline area

    When working in an offline environment, Cloud Bridge for Offline Systems might still help access our cloud library. Read more about Cloud Bridge here.

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  • How do I add my library to the store?

    + Get answer

  • How do I install the Soundly Monitor AAX plugin?

    + Get answer

  • How do I use my promo code?

    + Get answer

    There are two kinds of promo codes: The Coupon code where you must enter your payment information and the Promo code where you don’t need to enter any payment information

    Coupon code

    • If you already have an account, go to user -> profile in the Soundly software and choose Upgrade pick the Pro Monthly option. On the payment page, toggle the Have promo code option and enter your promo code.

    • If you don’t have an account, register your account, and follow the previous instructions on the payment page.

    Promo code

    • If you already have an account, go to user -> profile in the Soundly software and enter your promo code in the Promo Code box.
    • If you don’t have an account, register your account, and toggle the Have promo code option and enter your promo code on the register page.
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  • How does the offline mode work?

    + Get answer

    Soundly is meant to be online. When using Soundly offline, you won’t have access to the sound effects cloud (or private cloud). However, you can still use Soundly with your locally stored sound effects (computer, external storage device, or local network). Here’s how:

    1. Click User in the application menu bar.
    2. Click Offline mode. You’ll now have access to your indexed local sound effects.
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  • Is there a way to spot multiple files and have them imported in linear order in Pro Tools?

    + Get answer

  • What is the difference between shared network database and local networking?

    + Get answer

    When using a shared network database the folder your sound effects are stored in contains a database file. This file makes sure all the content is indexed in Soundly so that when others connect, the library is pre-indexed, and if other users have permission, they can edit the content.

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  • What quality and format are the sounds?

    + Get answer

    All the sounds in the Soundly Pro library are 96khz/24bit or higher.

    The sound resolution of third-party add-on libraries varies from library to library.

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  • Would Soundly be interested in obtaining my sound effects?

    + Get answer

    Soundly is always looking to expand our selection of sounds. Please reach out to us here and tell us about your sounds. We would love to have a listen, so we would appreciate a link where we can download a few examples of your files. The audio quality should at least meet 24bit 96khz.

    We’re looking forward to hearing from you and discussing a possible collaboration.

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Nurkomusic wrote: ↑

Wed Mar 06, 2019 5:31 am

So I use Ableton live 10. My Mac is constantly syncing to iCloud Drive which I don’t want it to. It’s slowing down the production process in Ableton, making it constantly freeze and slow down. The solution would be to stop iCloud from syncing, but once I do that. It creates some kind of archive folder for all of my desktops and documents. That would be fine, but once I open Ableton - it now says “media files are missing” and the majority of my projects are gone, samples. This happened once before. And I had to manually click on every file I needed and re download everything from iCloud Drive. Essentially reinstalling all of my samples. I’m trying to prevent this from happening so is there anyway I can have iCloud stop syncing without changing anything on my computer in regards to Ableton?
wow, that sounds extremely annoying. So I use Live 9(haven't upgraded to 10 yet) and I also use iCloud, but I never back up my desktop and anything thats unnecessary. I save all of my Ableton arrangements on an external SSD drive, which I think would allow you to bypass anything thats going on with your I cloud back up, also theres a Collect all and save under FILE which will automatically save all your samples into the arrangement folder, they will no longer be missing, or at least shouldn't be

you can also change your temp folder under preferences/file folder, but not sure if you can I use an external drive for that, haven't tried it

EDIT: Do you like syncing everything to iCloud? not sure if thats a priority for you but it's really simple I believe to only choose what you want to sync or back up, unless you have to back up everything all the time, that definitely could cause some problems, but using an external drive and collect all and save might solve your problem
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Collaboration in Ableton Live

Next steps

Starting with the launch menu, it felt like a radical change to add one into Ableton Live. I deliberately didn’t put much in the menu because it is a large product decision. However, users felt it was incomplete. A better solution would be to simply have Ableton Live manage local files for you, pulling data from the cloud as others work on the project.

A cloud status-indicator in the top bar with a button to go offline would work well to satisfy the main concerns of the users.

As with most of Ableton Live, a manual and tutorial may be necessary for the comment feature. It would definitely need to be beta tested at length to figure out if there are better ways of surfacing the feature. I think a better introduction would be to remove the version/commit feature and just have comments. As users learned the feature, versioning and commits could be added back in.

The overall feedback was positive, however, the design needs more rounds of testing to complete this feature set.

Here is a walkthrough of all the new features:

What I Learned

Show, don’t tell

The behaviour of clips wasn’t immediately clear to users. I could’ve used the help feature currently implemented in Ableton Live to allow users to discover features on their own.

Small changes have big impact

Adding cloud files seemed like a simple change (from the user’s perspective), but it added a lot of complexity by adding the issue of offline modes, multiple users, and a launch menu. This added unexpected complexity to the design process.

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Backing Up Ableton Live Projects

Once you've finished a project, whether it's one track, an EP or a full album, you should always make sure you will be able to access the files in the future. Not just within the next few months, but years down the road. Let's have a look at all the things to consider when creating backups of your work, so you don't make the same mistakes as lots of others (including me).

Collect All and Save

In Ableton Live, audio files you import, aren't automatically added to the Samples folder of the Live Project, as is the case with all recorded and internally processed audio. So if you add some from an external HD or a USB stick, and it's disconnected the next time you open the Live Set, the samples will be shown as missing. Use the Collect All and Save function under Live's File menu whenever you've imported some files. I also wrote a more detailed tutorial about this and what to do when you already have samples shown as missing.

Freeze and Flatten

Then there's the issue that VST and AU plug-ins might be discontinued or new versions might not load the old setting correctly or not at all. Or Max for Live devices you've been using in your production might no longer be maintained, especially if they were free. If any of these things happen, you will have trouble with your Live Set if you need to create an instrumental version or an edit for something.

To avoid this, you could make a duplicate of the tracks that contain plug-ins or Max for Live devices, then right-click on the track title and choose Freeze Track. Live will create a sample file for each Session clip in the track, plus one for the Arrangement. Then right, click the track title again and choose Flatten. This will replace the original clips and devices with their audible result, which is why I'd suggest to make a duplicate of the track first. The original will be replaced by an audio track without any devices on with all clips in Session View and one in the Arrangement View, even if it was a MIDI track before.

Create Bounces

When a new version of Live is released, it comes with its own sound library that often differs from the previous one. While it's possible to continue using an older Live Library, programming changes in the devices can change the sound sometimes. In total, with all the things that can get out of date, the best thing to avoid all of these pitfalls is to create bounces, in Live called export, which will create audio tracks.

Now the question is how you want to render the tracks. There are several options and all have pros and cons. The ones that give you more control will take more time to create, so you'll have to decide which one is the best for you.

First you need to select the time frame you want to export. It's common practise to use the Loop braces to select the start and end point in the arrangement. Now choose Export Audio/Video from the File menu or use the shortcut Cmd + Shift + R (Mac) or Ctrl + Shift + R (Win). The Export dialogue window opens. Choose the sample rate and bit depth that you've been working with in your project.

All Individual Tracks

In the first drop down menu right next to Rendered Track, you can choose All Individual Tracks. This will create audio tracks for each individual track in Ableton Live including Group, Return Tracks and the Master.

Pro: Fast automated process.
Con: One exported file per Return Track, no matter how many tracks' audio was fed through its effects.

Individual Tracks with Added Output from the Return Tracks

Another option is to export all tracks separately including the output of the returns the audio is sent to. The easiest way to do this, is to first select all individual tracks that don't feed into any returns, use the shortcut Cmd + Shift + R (Mac) or Ctrl + Shift + R (Win), choose Selected Tracks Only from the dropdown menu next to Rendered Track and export these. Then you need to solo the first track you want to export with the output from the returns. In the first dropdown menu in the Export dialogue window now choose Master and export. Rinse and repeat with all tracks that make use of the sends.

Pro: All exported tracks have the effects included.
Con: Tracks need to be exported manually.

Individual Tracks & Separated Outputs from the Return Tracks

If you need even more control of the effects, you can do an export of All Individual Tracks and get rid of the created tracks for each Return Track, because we will render them again. Then select the first track that sends audio to a Return Track and solo it, use the shortcut Cmd + Shift + R (Mac) or Ctrl + Shift + R (Win) and in the dropdown menu next to Rendered Track select the first Return Track that the soloed track feeds into and export. Repeat with all other Return Tracks it feeds into. Then move on to the next track and repeat.

Pro: Return Tracks are exported per individual track that feeds into them for maximum control.
Con: Takes the longest as tracks and Return Tracks need to be exported manually.

Keep a Backup

Okay, so now that you've prepared the files of your productions so that you will have access and enough control over them in the future if necessary, there's one last step. Create a backup (better make it two, since hard drives can fail) of the Live Projects and the bounces on an external hard drive and/or somewhere in the cloud.

That's it. Now your work is all backed up and ready to be accessed whenever you need it.

Let me know if you have any further questions or suggestions of your own.

Madeleine Bloom is an Ableton Certified Trainer, musician, producer, multi-instrumentalist and singer from Berlin. She studied Electroacoustic Music at the Franz Liszt Conservatory. For a few years she worked as a technical support for Ableton gaining in-depth knowledge of Ableton Live that even most CTs don't ever get. In 2012 she started Sonic Bloom and has since helped countless people on all continents with their music productions and live performances.

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How to make an Ableton Live pack

Ableton Live’s Pack feature presents an excellent way to archive Live Projects for backing them up, sharing them with collaborators, or for creating a showcase for your loops, presets, and sound design skills that you can sell or distribute as your own product. Live Packs archive the Live Set session file, as well as its audio clips, MIDI clips, and Live device presets, such as Instrument and Effect Racks.

If you’re like many electronic musicians, you have tons of unfinished projects lying around. You could easily take the best elements from those projects and make a Pack for Live users to enjoy.

Open those sessions and pick out the best audio or MIDI tracks. Chop audio into loopable bits and choose File > Export Audio. In the dialogue box (Figure 1) make sure Render as Loop is on and select the audio file type and resolution that you will use for your entire Pack. (Don’t render to a resolution above the session’s original quality.) Then export to a new folder where you’ll export all your Pack files. Do the same for audio one-shots, turning the Render as Loop option off. Alternately, you could right-click on audio clips and choose one of the Convert to MIDI options (Figure 2). The resulting MIDI will probably need some cleaning up before you export it. Right-click on those and any other MIDI clips and choose Export MIDI Clip from the menu to save them to your Pack folder.

You should also save your best instrument and effect chains as Racks. Multi-select all the devices in a chain and hit Command-G to group them into a rack. Hit Command-R to rename the rack as something descriptive and/or clever. Then open the Rack’s Macro Control pane and click Map. Now click one of the most used parameters in any of the devices and then click a Macro Map button to assign it to a Macro control. Stack more than one control on each Macro and then rename that control appropriately (Figure 3). The more creative and useful your Racks and Macro controls are, the greater your Pack will be. Lastly, save the Rack to your Library with the Rack’s Save Preset button.

Now start a new Live Set and build a Session view collection of grouped tracks using your folder of MIDI and audio loops and one-shots, as well as your Rack devices, labelling the tracks appropriately archiving your Project file as a Pack is a straightforward process. Choose File > Manage Files from the menu to open the File Management panel on the far right of the Live window. There, click the Manage Project button. On the next screen under External Files, you’ll see if there are any presets, samples, etc. located outside the Project folder. If so, you must select Collect Into Project and then hit Collect and Save. When that’s finished, you can hit the Create Pack button, which lets you name the Pack before it exports your Pack as a .alp file, using lossless compression to reduce the file size by up to 50 per cent.

Many people sell their Live Pack digital files over the Internet or simply share them with the public or with musical collaborators. You could also use them as promotional or add-on content. However you play it, spread the word to the Ableton forum, Ableton User Groups, or production blogs, or shop it around to soundware companies. The possibilities for getting it out there are almost as endless as the material you can create.

Electronic Musician magazine is the ultimate resource for musicians who want to make better music, in the studio or onstage.

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Google Drive, Dropbox & iCloud

As my Google Drive’s free storage reached its maximum capacity, I knew it was time to upgrade. Before making the move though, I was determined to find the best cloud storage for music production. As it turns out, there wasn’t much information out there on the subject, so I decided to provide my own personal experience based on trial and error.

Dropbox, Google Drive and Apple iCloud are some of the most popular cloud storage services on the market. Although they may share similarities, you’d be surprised to find out that some of these aren’t necessarily optimized for music producers. However, it all comes down to personal preference. I’m simply going to be running you down each service and presenting its potential advantages and disadvantages.

Splice Studio for music producers

I only recently found out about splice.com and their revolutionary service. Rent-to-own plug-ins, royalty-free samples and FREE unlimited cloud storage for your projects are just a few perks for members of Splice.

mixer 4197733 1920

Compared to every other cloud storage service on the market, this one best serves music producers.

However, it’s currently only compatible with Logic Pro X, Garageband, Ableton Live and FL Studio. It’s understood that this is a major caveat for music producers using other DAWs.

Specs and useful features

  • Unlimited FREE storage for project files, sounds & presets
  • Collaboration is integrated into Splice’s cloud storage platform
  • Optional monthly subscription for royalty-free samples, loops & presets
  • Designed to increase your workflow and productivity
  • Ability to merge your STEMS and audio mixdown to each project file
  • Keeps a record of EVERY version that gets synchronized
  • Includes a desktop client

User impressions

It’s really difficult to compete with the service Splice is offering. Most music producers view it as the “all-in-one-solution” for everything music-related.

Splice’s only disadvantage is its incompatibility with certain DAWs (Cubase, Reason, Pro Tools, etc…). However, it’s always a possibility that more DAWs are added to the roster in the future!

One of the main things I don’t like about the platform though it the desktop client. It’s not regularly updated and seriously needs some work.

Bottom-line

You’re really getting what you’re paying for with Splice Studio (you’re not paying for anything, remember that). That means that there’s not much accountability if something goes wrong…

I personally still have it on-hand since I have nothing to lose, but I’d never rely on it 100% for my backups.

Splice Studio is perfect for the casual music producer and/or hobbyist.

Dropbox for music producers

I’ve been personally using Dropbox for the last year or so and it’s fulfilled most of my needs as a professional music producer. It allows me to easily deliver projects/assets to clients and keep my own files secure and ready to access wherever I go.

cloud storage for music production

It’s one of the most trusted/used cloud storage services on the market, but is it necessarily the best?

The pricing may seem higher than most of the other services we’ll be talking about, but I assure you that it’s completely worth it if you’re serious about your career.

Specs and useful features

  • 2 GB of free storage per Dropbox account
  • Most affordable plan starting at 2 TB
  • Sharing files using links is easy and effective
  • The user interface is elegant and easy to use
  • Transfer files using Dropbox Transfer (up to 2 GB)
  • File recovery and version history (30-days)
  • Includes an easy to use desktop client

User impressions

I’m not surprised that most industry professionals choose to go with Dropbox. It’s got useful features that most other cloud storage services don’t like the ability to recover files and to keep version history.

The only negative about Dropbox is the lack of flexibility in terms of pricing. It’s difficult for younger music producers to invest in more storage than they currently need. However, the quality of the service completely justifies the price.

That being said, an equivalent storage plan with Google Drive costs the same, but doesn’t provide any additional benefits.

Bottom-line

Dropbox is currently the industry standard for professionals. It takes all the necessary precautions against the possibility of having corrupted files. If external HDDs aren’t your thing, then this will surely take a load off your shoulders.

However, I don’t think Dropbox is the best solution for everybody. You’ll really need to ask yourself whether or not you’ll be needing all these extra features and 2 TB of storage. It’ll also depend on which type of storage you intend on prioritizing (physical/virtual).

It’s also worth mentioning that Dropbox doesn’t automatically backup your entire hard drive (just certain folders).

Google Drive for music producers

I’ve been using Google Drive for EVERYTHING since it became operational in 2012. Right from the start, Google proved itself to be quite generous by providing 15 GB of free storage for all its users.

cloud storage for music production

In retrospect, Dropbox provides a mere 2 GB for free and 5 GB with Apple’s iCloud.

That being said, most music producers would obviously need to upgrade at some point or another. Freebies are great, but we need to look a little deeper if we want to find out what’s best for our particular needs.

Specs and useful features

  • 15 GB of free storage per Google account
  • Most affordable plan starting at 100 GB
  • Sharing files using links is easy and effective
  • The user interface is elegant and easy to use
  • Synchronized with all of Google’s Suite’s applications
  • Includes an easy to use desktop client

User impressions

Most of us already have a Google account, so why waste 15 GB of free storage? However, it seems that most music producers are switching to Dropbox for the long run.

Although I’ve experienced issues with Google Drive (like corrupted documents), it’s still reliable 99.9% of the time. The only disadvantage is the fact that it doesn’t keep version history (at least not yet).

The main reason music producers choose Google Drive is because of its affordability and simplicity.

Bottom-line

Google Drive is what I’ve been using (and continue to use to this day). I was hesitant at first, but test-driving Apple’s iCloud for a day resolved any doubts I was having (more on this later). Don’t get me wrong, Google Drive isn’t perfect, but nothing really is.

I’ve used it with Logic Pro X for quite some time without issues, but I’m not using it for anything important anymore. Google Drive is great for basic files, but I’d rather have something specialized for my projects.

Apple iCloud for music producers

If you haven’t read my content in the past, then you need to know that I have mixed feelings about Apple. When it comes to music production, I prefer Apple computers and THAT’S THAT. I simply think the operating system and hardware (Thunderbolt mostly) are optimal for music/video production.

Apple iCloud

That being said, I have NEVER been more disappointed with a product than iCloud.

It’s almost as if Apple has completely given up on its cloud storage service. It’s completely outdated when we compare to other services. It baffles me that it’s still one of the most popular products out there. I don’t recommend it to music producers (or to anyone really).

Specs and useful features

  • 5 GB of free storage per Apple account
  • Most affordable plan starting at 50 GB
  • Automatically backup documents/downloads folder
  • Synchronized data throughout all your Apple devices
  • Integrated into MacOS and iOS

User impressions

When I was researching the best cloud storage for music producers, I was hearing mostly negative things about Apple iCloud. Most users were dissatisfied with the ability to collaborate on projects.

It almost seems as if Apple refuses to acknowledge its clientele’s needs, so I was quick to ask for a refund. The inability to automatically backup any given file/folder was unbelievable, especially considering its integration with MacOS.

Most would assume that it works in harmony with Apple’s proprietary software such as Logic Pro X, but that’s NOT the case.

Bottom-line

Whether you’re using Windows and/or MacOS, I highly recommend staying away from iCloud. It’s simply not up to par with its competitors. Take advantage of the included 5 GB of storage to backup your contacts, settings, etc… But it’s not worth the upgrade.

If Apple decides to get their act together one of these days, I may provide a revision. However, I encourage you to look into Dropbox for your cloud storage needs.

Is cloud storage enough for music production?

The answer to this question will vary from individual to individual, but I personally believe that IT’S NOT. I frequently backup all of my projects using two external HDDs, not just ONE

For me, cloud storage would be useful only and IF my house/apartment ever burned down. 

Of course, there are other scenarios, but you get the idea… But what are the odds that your computer’s HDD and both your external HDDs stop working? Not very high. This is why I prioritize physical storage mediums.

Even if you were certain that your cloud storage service was 100% reliable, I still wouldn’t risk it. I think having BOTH is essential.

It’s comforting to have your work automatically being backed up to the cloud, but regularly backing up to your external HDDs is a good habit to develop. Maybe once per week? That way, if you ever need to pull back an older version of your project, you may still have it (happened to me recently)!

I hope you’ve found this guide useful. If you have any questions, feel free to leave me a comment!

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We’ve all been there, Ableton crashes all of the sudden and it won’t start up again.

Or maybe you want to upgrade from a “tester” version of Ableton Live.

You need to do a reinstall of Ableton Live!

So how do you do it properly to ensure all of your projects still work after the reinstall?

Let’s take a look!

Always Collect All and Save

The most important rule you should follow always is…

Collect All and Save!

Ableton Live lets you use samples from anywhere on your hard drive. While this is super convenient, it also presents problems when sharing or backing up Ableton projects.

Since your samples may not be stored in the project file of your session, if you try to share the project there will be missing files.

This is where Collect All and Save comes in.

Collect All and Save does exactly what it says. Using this option will collect all the samples used within your project file and save them to the project folder. This gives you a complete package to back up on your hard drive.

Any samples collected will be stored in the project files in the folder Samples → Collected.

You should note CA&S does not collect 3rd party plugins, those must be installed separately.

Backing Up Your Music Production Projects

Let’s take a look at where and what files to back up.

Where Should You Back Up Your Files?

You know you need to back up your files, but where do you do that?

Cloud Storage

The most accessible and worry-free way to back up your project files is to store them with a cloud service. Google Drive or Microsoft OneDrive are great options for this.

Storing files is as easy as dragging and dropping them into the folder in your drive.

Most of these cloud services are monthly subscriptions. The price is more than worth it, our Google Drive account costs us about $3 a month right now.

External Hard Drive Storage

An upside to backing up your files to an external hard drive is you do not need the internet to access the files.

The downside is you need to have the hard drive with you to back up your project files. For mobile producers this means extra gear to bring along but might be worth it for those times when you are away from internet access.

External hard drives are easy to find and can cost anywhere from $30 to $200 dollars.

What Files Should You Back Up?

Now that you know where to back up your files, which files should you back up?

If you can, it is recommended to back up your entire hard drive. This way if your current hard drive fails, you have a complete image to restore from.

If that is not an option for you, here are the files you will need to back up to ensure Ableton will work after a fresh reinstall.

Project Files

You should back up your project folder of course. This will be the folder where you save all of your Ableton projects. Simply copy and paste the project folder to either your cloud storage or your external drive.

Remember to collect all and save each of your projects so that all samples will be stored in the project folder.

If you are really worried about your plugins not loading after the reinstall or losing presets you can bounce the entire project to audio stems. This way if something does go wrong you will at least have the audio stem to work with.

To do this, open the Export window and select All Individual Tracks. This will bounce each track to an audio stem.

User Library

The User Library is where all of your custom racks/presets/drum kits are stored. To find this folder open up the Live preferences menu and navigate to the Library tab.

Find the folder in your operating system and copy this to your backup drive.

Sample Library

Backing up your sample library is another easy one, as long as you keep all of your samples in the same place. Just copy and paste your sample library folder to your backup drive.

Plugins

While you won’t need to back up the plugins themselves, you should back up any folders the plugins create on install. This might be where presets or impulse responses are stored.

Keep a list of all of your current plugins, this will make it easier to install them all when the time comes.

To reinstall them, simply download the latest version of each plugin and install them like you normally would.

Synth Presets

If you are big into creating custom synth patches, you will want to make sure you save all of your custom presets. This means going into every project file, looking for custom patches you’ve made, and saving them.

So many times I have forgotten this step and opened my backup projects only to find the default “init” patch loaded in my plugin synth.

Reinstalling Ableton Live

When you are ready to reinstall your copy of Ableton Live, go to the Ableton website and download the latest version. Reinstalling is as easy as running the setup or dragging the program to your Applications folder. Just like a normal install.

Installing An Older Version Of Live

To install an older version of Ableton Live you will need to go to the archive on the Ableton website. Here you will find all of the older versions you have access to with your license.

Resetting Ableton Live Preferences

If you ever need to reset your Ableton Live preferences it is super easy to do.

On a mac, just delete these files; Preferences.cfg, the Undo folder, and Template.als. You’ll find these files in a hidden folder located here: Users/[username]/Library/Preferences/Ableton/Live x.x and Users/[username]/Music/Ableton/User Library/Templates

On a PC, open the hidden folder Users\[username]\AppData\Roaming\Ableton\Live x.x\Preferences and delete Preferences.cfg and the Undo folder. To delete the templates go to this hidden folder Users\[username]\Documents\Ableton\User Library\Templates and delete the files Template.als.

TIP: you can copy the Preferences.cfg, Undo folder, and Template.als instead of deleting them. This way if resetting doesn’t fix your problem you can restore them to your previous settings.

Author: Mike P

Hi! My name is Mike! I’ve been an apartment producer/musician for 10+ years. I’ve played in punk bands, released EDM tunes on Beatport and iTunes, and have a semi-successful stock music portfolio. Read more…

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Backing Up Ableton Live Projects

Once you've finished a project, whether it's one track, an EP or a full album, you should always make sure you will be able to access the files in the future. Not just within the next few months, but years down the road. Let's have a look at all the things to consider when creating backups of your work, so you don't make the same mistakes as lots of others (including me).

Collect All and Save

In Ableton Live, audio files you import, aren't automatically added to the Samples folder of the Live Project, as is the case with all recorded and internally processed audio. So if you add some from an external HD or a USB stick, and it's disconnected the next time you open the Live Set, the samples will be shown as missing. Use the Collect All and Save function under Live's File menu whenever you've imported some files. I also wrote a more detailed tutorial about this and what to do when you already have samples shown as missing.

Freeze and Flatten

Then there's the issue that VST and AU plug-ins might be discontinued or new versions might not load the old setting correctly or not at all. Or Max for Live devices you've been using in your production might no longer be maintained, especially if they were free. If any of these things happen, you will have trouble with your Live Set if you need to create an instrumental version or an edit for something.

To avoid this, you could make a duplicate of the tracks that contain plug-ins or Max for Live devices, then right-click on the track title and choose Freeze Track. Live will create a sample file for each Session clip in the track, plus one for the Arrangement. Then right, click the track title again and choose Flatten. This will replace the original clips and devices with their audible result, which is why I'd suggest to make a duplicate of the track first. The original will be replaced by an audio track without any devices on with all clips in Session View and one in the Arrangement View, even if it was a MIDI track before.

Create Bounces

When a new version of Live is released, it comes with its own sound library that often differs from the previous one. While it's possible to continue using an older Live Library, programming changes in the devices can change the sound sometimes. In total, with all the things that can get out of date, the best thing to avoid all of these pitfalls is to create bounces, in Live called export, which will create audio tracks.

Now the question is how you want to render the tracks. There are several options and all have pros and cons. The ones that give you more control will take more time to create, so you'll have to decide which one is the best for you.

First you need to select the time frame you want to export. It's common practise to use the Loop braces to select the start and end point in the arrangement. Now choose Export Audio/Video from the File menu or use the shortcut Cmd + Shift + R (Mac) or Ctrl + Shift + R (Win). The Export dialogue window opens. Choose the sample rate and bit depth that you've been working with in your project.

All Individual Tracks

In the first drop down menu right next to Rendered Track, you can choose All Individual Tracks. This will create audio tracks for each individual track in Ableton Live including Group, Return Tracks and the Master.

Pro: Fast automated process.
Con: One exported file per Return Track, no matter how many tracks' audio was fed through its effects.

Individual Tracks with Added Output from the Return Tracks

Another option is to export all tracks separately including the output of the returns the audio is sent to. The easiest way to do this, is to first select all individual tracks that don't feed into any returns, use the shortcut Cmd + Shift + R (Mac) or Ctrl + Shift + R (Win), choose Selected Tracks Only from the dropdown menu next to Rendered Track and export these. Then you need to solo the first track you want to export with the output from the returns. In the first dropdown menu in the Export dialogue window now choose Master and export. Rinse and repeat with all tracks that make use of the sends.

Pro: All exported tracks have the effects included.
Con: Tracks need to be exported manually.

Individual Tracks & Separated Outputs from the Return Tracks

If you need even more control of the effects, you can do an export of All Individual Tracks and get rid of the created tracks for each Return Track, because we will render them again. Then select the first track that sends audio to a Return Track and solo it, use the shortcut Cmd + Shift + R (Mac) or Ctrl + Shift + R (Win) and in the dropdown menu next to Rendered Track select the first Return Track that the soloed track feeds into and export. Repeat with all other Return Tracks it feeds into. Then move on to the next track and repeat.

Pro: Return Tracks are exported per individual track that feeds into them for maximum control.
Con: Takes the longest as tracks and Return Tracks need to be exported manually.

Keep a Backup

Okay, so now that you've prepared the files of your productions so that you will have access and enough control over them in the future if necessary, there's one last step. Create a backup (better make it two, since hard drives can fail) of the Live Projects and the bounces on an external hard drive and/or somewhere in the cloud.

That's it. Now your work is all backed up and ready to be accessed whenever you need it.

Let me know if you have any further questions or suggestions of your own.

Madeleine Bloom is an Ableton Certified Trainer, musician, producer, multi-instrumentalist and singer from Berlin. She studied Electroacoustic Music at the Franz Liszt Conservatory. For a few years she worked as a technical support for Ableton gaining in-depth knowledge of Ableton Live that even most CTs don't ever get. In 2012 she started Sonic Bloom and has since helped countless people on all continents with their music productions and live performances.

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Collaboration in Ableton Live

Next steps

Starting with the launch menu, it felt like a radical change to add one into Ableton Live. I deliberately didn’t put much in the menu because it is a large product decision. However, users felt it was incomplete. A better solution would be to simply have Ableton Live manage local files for you, pulling data from the cloud as others work on the project.

A cloud status-indicator in the top bar with a button to go offline would work well to satisfy the main concerns of the users.

As with most of Ableton Live, a manual and tutorial may be necessary for the comment feature. It would definitely need to be beta tested at length to figure out if there are better ways of surfacing the feature. I think a better introduction would be to remove the version/commit feature and just have comments. As users learned the feature, versioning and commits could be added back in.

The overall feedback was positive, however, the design needs more rounds of testing to complete this feature set.

Here is a walkthrough of all the new features:

What I Learned

Show, don’t tell

The behaviour of clips wasn’t immediately clear to users. I could’ve used the help feature currently implemented in Ableton Live to allow users to discover features on their own.

Small changes have big impact

Adding cloud files seemed like a simple change (from the user’s perspective), but it added a lot of complexity by adding the issue of offline modes, multiple users, and a launch menu. This added unexpected complexity to the design process.

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How to make an Ableton Live pack

Ableton Live’s Pack feature presents an excellent way to archive Live Projects for backing them up, sharing them with collaborators, or for creating a showcase for your loops, presets, and sound design skills that you can sell or distribute as your own product. Live Packs archive the Live Set session file, as well as its audio clips, MIDI clips, and Live device presets, such as Instrument and Effect Racks.

If you’re like many electronic musicians, you have tons of unfinished projects lying around. You could easily take the best elements from those projects and make a Pack for Live users to enjoy.

Open those sessions and pick out the best audio or MIDI tracks. Chop audio into loopable bits and choose File > Export Audio. In the dialogue box (Figure 1) make sure Render as Loop is on and select the audio file type and resolution that you will use for your entire Pack. (Don’t render to a resolution above the session’s original quality.) Then export to a new folder where you’ll export all your Pack files. Do the same for audio one-shots, turning the Render as Loop option off. Alternately, you could right-click on audio clips and choose one of the Convert to MIDI options (Figure 2). The resulting MIDI will probably need some cleaning up before you export it. Right-click on those and any other MIDI clips and choose Export MIDI Clip from the menu to save them to your Pack folder.

You should also save your best instrument and effect chains as Racks. Multi-select all the devices in a chain and hit Command-G to group them into a rack. Hit Command-R to rename the rack as something descriptive and/or clever. Then open the Rack’s Macro Control pane and click Map. Now click one of the most used parameters in any of the devices and then click a Macro Map button to assign it to a Macro control. Stack more than one control on each Macro and then rename that control appropriately (Figure 3). The more creative and useful your Racks and Macro controls are, the greater your Pack will be. Lastly, save the Rack to your Library with the Rack’s Save Preset button.

Now start a new Live Set and build a Session view collection of grouped tracks using your folder of MIDI and audio loops and one-shots, as well as your Rack devices, labelling the tracks appropriately archiving your Project file as a Pack is a straightforward process. Choose File > Manage Files from the menu to open the File Management panel on the far right of the Live window. There, click the Manage Project button. On the next screen under External Files, you’ll see if there are any presets, samples, etc. located outside the Project folder. If so, you must select Collect Into Project and then hit Collect and Save. When that’s finished, you can hit the Create Pack button, which lets you name the Pack before it exports your Pack as a .alp file, using lossless compression to reduce the file size by up to 50 per cent.

Many people sell their Live Pack digital files over the Internet or simply share them with the public or with musical collaborators. You could also use them as promotional or add-on content. However you play it, spread the word to the Ableton forum, Ableton User Groups, or production blogs, or shop it around to soundware companies. The possibilities for getting it out there are almost as endless as the material you can create.

Electronic Musician magazine is the ultimate resource for musicians who want to make better music, in the studio or onstage.

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3 comments

  1. These days i use my own Windows XP disc, the old Dell Media Center SP2 which is so old it can domain join. Stripped away the dell parts, slipstreamed sp4 to get all the other mediacenter bits and then patched winlogon. I don't know of another media center version that has all the proffesional bits unlocked so it makes for a great disc.

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