Photo (CC) Brendan Dawes.

It’s round, it’s mechanically-resistant, it’s tangible, it supports multi-touch and gestures. Yep – it’s the turntable, and outdoing it would mean reinventing the wheel, literally. And so it is that more than a few Ableton fans have wondered how they might work vinyl into their software axe of choice.

Ableton and digital vinyl vendor Serato have announced they’re doing “something,” and then announced at the beginning of October that an announcement would be announced on January 14, 2010 at NAMM. Oh, and they said it will “unleash your creativity,” which sounds good. (It’s better than, say, “Ableton and Serato’s creative partnership will unleash two dozen angry badgers,” or “if you own Ableton Live, what we will say in 2010 is that we will unleash an unspeakable, nameless evil, known only to the ancients, which shall bring about the endtimes.”)

Here’s the surprise – you likely won’t have to wait for Serato to get integrated digital vinyl control. It’s already working with Ms. Pinky, and that means more choice, more DIY possibilities, and a broader variety of ways to integrate turntables and Live.

You see, there’s this little thing called Max for Live, which allows the use of Max patches inside Live as seamless instruments and effects. And one of the best – if least-known – vinyl control systems out there has long featured Max integration: Ms. Pinky. People have already made use of VST plug-in integration, but because Max for Live also connects to the Live API for control of Live itself, the functionality of the two can be expanded.


Via our friend Luthier.Lab, we get a first look at the Ms. Pinky plug-in. And this should be just the beginning, as Ms. Pinky and its Max/MSP support could be a great construction kit for building your own solution – something that may not be possible with Serato.

Ms.PinkyforLive [Luthier.Lab – en EspaƱol]
Google Translate (which has some very funny ideas about how to translate Spanish)
Discussion on the Ms. Pinky forum

While you ponder the possibilities, it’s time for a video from Daito Manabe demonstrating that not all turntablists sound quite the same.