If you are here, it means that you want to learn more about Ableton Live. For newbies, Ableton Live is a digital audio workstation and music sequencer available for Windows and Mac OS. Its major release is the Ableton Live 9, which was introduced back on the 5th of March 2013. Unlike many other software music sequencers in this industry, Ableton Live is designed for live performances. It is also used as a tool for mastering, mixing, arranging, recording and composing. You’ll see a lot of disk jockeys use this software a lot, but it is not only limited to their genre. The reason why this is so popular among DJs is that it provides a package of controls for crossfading, beatmatching and many other effects that are utilized by turntablists.
Creating a Default Template
This article already assumes that you have played and created music with Ableton Live 9 a bit. From your experience, you will notice how there are certain processes that are redundant, especially when you open the software and you have to arrange everything all over again. This is where you get to create a default template. The purpose of the default template is to have it ready every time you open the software. It will save you time from setting up all the audio tracks for every input you make from the sound card.
As you have already worked up with your Ableton Live session, especially from the basics of creating audio channels, MIDI, tracks, etc., and you want to keep the same things intact since you don’t want to do these things all over again. To save this work project as the default template, go to Preferences, and under the File Folder tab, you will find the “Set Current Set as Default.” Click on “Save” and click “OK” when it asks you to Overwrite the template Set.
While this is an advantage if you want to work on the same set over and over again, the drawback is how the software can only open a single default template at a time. Below is a tutorial on how you can make and then save as many template projects as you can. You get to use them anytime that you want in a particular project when you do your Live set. This will save a lot of time again! It takes out the tedious tasks like routing up the tracks and equipment all over again.
Creating a Custom Template
Many DJs create their piece with Ableton Live as templates and sell them online. Others just give them away for free. Before you learn the benefits of using the Ableton templates, you should first learn how to create a custom template. You might reap the benefits later when you decide to sell them.
Just like how you created your default template, the custom template is an easy thing to do. Every time you have a certain project that you wish to save for later use, you only need to save it in the Live Library. In there, you will find a folder with the name “Templates.” Whenever you go in a new session and want to start a particular template that you want to work on from the Live Library of the same folder. The software will open the template of your choosing, then creates a new set. When you save the project where you loaded the template, it will not overwrite the template but rather create a new one. This is a great advantage to utilize, especially when you find your new music piece to create a new tune and you don’t want it to overwrite the existing template you have.
Another advantage of creating custom templates is that you can also drag other existing templates into the Live sets. Just imagine while you are working on a song and you decide to use another template and incorporate into your new project. If you already have a template already prepped with all the midi and audio routing already in place, including a couple of plugins you want to run on the synth with, all you need to do is just drag the template into the current set. Ableton will automatically add that to your current project.
Purchasing Ableton Templates
Since you can create your Ableton templates, it is only feasible that some professionals sell their templates online. For example, the Ableton templates sold here https://www.logic-templates.com/ableton-templates are all made by professionals. You can use these templates in your current projects.
Some musicians make use of the Ableton templates as a guide or use it to study the arrangement. Many newbies, especially DJs, want to know how long the intro should be, when should it end, where to break the intro, etc.
Another advantage of getting these templates is to study its process. Think of it this way – the templates available for purchase are all made by professionals and professors that are working their lives in the music industry. When aspiring musicians do not have enough money to fund their studies for the EDM music school, the templates made by professionals who come from such background can be used as a study guide. You get to learn how they make the transitions and even process the leads. You can even save the changes that you made on such templates, too, and use it as a reference for later or as a project to create a whole new piece.
When purchasing Ableton templates is too expensive for you, you can work your way on free templates, too. However, keep in mind that free templates do not always have the same quality that priced templates possess. However, it will at least provide you some idea on how it can help your project. It will also clarify your confusion on how the kit works, which one is the right snare, the right clap, etc.
You will probably hear a lot of things coming from other people is how using the templates is cheating. It is not cheating unless you release the template as it is and even claim it to be your own. Another giveaway is by simply putting ample changes to the template. This attitude is common among urban DJs that are on a chase to release more music pieces when they are demanded it.
That’s it for the basics of Ableton templates and how you can make your own from existing and purchased templates.