The APC40 is physically completely unlike the monome, but one important way it did learn from the experience of Live users’ desire to hack: you’ll be able to make your own, custom setups, using Max.

Ableton founder and CEO Gerhard Behles explains to Akai in an interview released this morning:

Owners of the APC40 who also own Max for Live can change the way the APC40 controls Live, and completely customize their experience. This means things like step sequencers and drum rack support and other things that only feel right with hardware will now be available for people who own these two great products. The boundaries of what you can do with complete customization and hundreds of LEDs are infinite.

I’m guessing at this point you might like to know what "Max for Live" is. Suffice to say, Cycling ‘74 said that they’d show their collaboration with Ableton at the NAMM show, and there’s an Ableton press conference later today.

My main question on this: how much control do you have? Is there anything special about the APC40, or is what Gerhard really saying that you can make your own weird step sequencers with whatever hardware you want using Max for Live? (For that matter, there’s no reason you can’t do this right now using Reaktor or Pd or a number of other tools that also work with Live.) My sense is actually that this is different, but in terms of what objects are specifically in there that enable it, we’re still waiting to find out (and may actually have more of those specifics after NAMM).

  • >> For that matter, there’s no reason you can’t do this right now using Reaktor or Pd or a number of other tools that also work with Live.

    – that's why I am definitely hoping that they will have pushed the envelope – it won't make a lot of sense to "just" build sequencers. We want integral control.

    Robert Henke has already let slip that the new design will allow users to dive into clips, querying and setting notes WITHIN that clip, dynamically.

    And yes, that is. bad. ass.

  • Max for Live, eh? It's amusing that Ableton and Cycling 74 were so secretive about what they were working on together, and it turns out to be the most obvious thing imaginable.

  • Obvious, of course, can be a good thing.

  • Chris

    On the Ableton forum Robert Henke said that you will have access to midi notes in a clip through MAX.. ooooh…. I cant wait till the announcement.

  • Martin

    Hopefully there will be OSC support now in Live? This would make sense with MAX for Live.

  • Ah this is great news, this will work great will all kinds of controllers like the Lemur or Monome, instead on relying on a "hacked" ableton with a LiveAPI solution it can all be done natively via MfL, cool!

  • WHOA THIS IS AWESOME! *dr00ls*

  • gbsr

    the ableton forums is raving about the apc at the moment 😉

  • jonnyfive

    Wow this is exciting. I like many/all others are hoping for some sort of OSC-esque or back-door exposure to the guts of Live, anything where I can control things from Max without going through the MIDI-mapping nightmare that is live control form Max (on a Mac over here so no Live API for me). If it were a Max object or set of objects that would be even better, and save some time with tedious scripting of OSC-route patches and allows for the exciting possibility of 2 way communication is really exciting too.

    Man its gonna be a long 3 hours! (Ableton has a press conference at 11am PST)

  • jonnyfive

    Wow. Looks like I need more coffee and proof reading…

    Anyway, now I'm really excited for the c74/Abe announcement, better temper my expectaions.

  • At first I was a little disappointed, but after reading what Qbical said…I'm hoping for max to replace LiveAPI altogether. That would be pretty amazing.

  • @Mike / Qbical – what are you doing, specifically? My sense is that this won't replace the Live API completely, but I'm curious about your specific applications.

  • @Peter – I really have no idea, but it seems like LiveAPI, for some people, isn't so easy. Plus the one thing I've always wanted to be able to do with a controller in Live is control the clip envelopes…sample offset…all that. I just feel like if they're making true integration like that, it would work out better for people who aren't familiar with Python or coding for that matter.

  • @Mike: I didn't say you wouldn't *want* to replace the LiveAPI, I'm saying this may not actually do that for you!

  • My main question; will we be able to use MSP in live? I'm personally more interested in custom effects than step-sequencers, say… guess we'll find out soon enough

  • @ Peter – I'm just starting out with my Lemur, want to be able to use it in my livesets to trigger clips amongst other things. To be able to close my laptop screen and still perform would mean a lot in terms of a "visually attractive" liveset. I've been looking into the LiveAPI but since I'm on the mac it isn't that well support, havent tried it that hard though wanted to start some programming with it this semester at school, but now with max for live I'm hoping it will make things a lot more easy.

  • @Peter – I guess I'm just hoping the Cycling/Ableton partnership is more than just for controllers.

  • @Mike: It is.

    You have 3.5 hours remaining. Last bets. 🙂

  • 3½ hours??? I can't wait that long.

  • jonnyfive

    I thought it was just 2 hours? Suspense is killing me too. I didn't know the partnership was being revealed at namm till yesterday, and now i cant not refresh the CDM + c74 pages every 2 seconds!

  • @Mateo. Henke says MAX means Max/MSP/Jitter. So, the whole kit it seems.

    @Peter. The LiveAPI doesn't work so well with a Mac, and its limitations can be quite frustrating.

  • This is great news!

  • jonnyfive

    Im sure peter will be on it shortly, but for those of you refresh hounds who cant wait c74 has updated their homepage:


    LOL, nice work Cycling staff !

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