A new Live release also means updates for Push, both in standalone and controller modes. At last, that includes macro mapping and macro variations, among other enhancements.

The dramatic change in Push 2.1 / Live 12.1 is the addition of Macro Mapping and Macro Variations directly on Ableton’s hardware.

Macro and Button mapping. Touch any mappable encoder, and you’ll get a Map to Macro button so you can assign it. You can map buttons to Device Mute and other, uh, button-y things, too. You can also edit assigned macros (and buttons, I think).

Best of all, this works on all Push devices, 1-3.

I wrote last fall about a free device by Isotonik and Elisabeth Homeland that grabs assignments on the device. I’ll talk to them soon about the future of that device with this new functionality from Ableton.

Macro Variations. These were also sorely needed on Push. On Push 3, now you can add, trigger, edit, and even randomize variations on the device. Both Push 2 and Push 3 let you play variations on the pads, too – access the new pad modes for that via the Layout button. See below:

Move Tracks and Scenes around. Using the Push 3 jog wheel or Push 2 encoders, you can move tracks and scenes around. This means it’s now worth dusting off your Push and going through and quickly reorganizing (cough) your Sets. Press and hold, and then turn the jog/encoder. Double-press track select buttons to quickly arm tracks.

Push 3 standalone finally creates its own hotspots. This was a big issue working with standalone mode on Push 3; you needed a wifi network to use Link or transfer files. Now you can create a hotspot right on the Push 3 standalone and use that instead. (You still can’t use the wired USB-C connection, but this is a decent workaround.)

And more… Enhancements like instant application of Grooves become a big deal on Push. All the new and updated Devices I mentioned in the Live 12.1 write-up apply here, as well. And there’s a huge set of improvements to browsing – with Push benefiting from a lot of Live 12.1’s automatic features.

See the full release notes:

Push with Live 12 – Beta Release Notes

It’s definitely not everything we were waiting on, but it’s good to see steady progress – and this is more than enough to explore for a while.

All the new stuff in Live 12.1: