Why use Ableton if you have Logic ?
I am a professional Logic user and I love the program. I’ve heard several times the question “why should I add Ableton Live to my set of producer tools? What can it do more of better than Logic?” Well, there aren’t a lot of things it can do more or better. In my opinion, the answer is: Ableton Live does it differently.
It is perfectly possible to make a pro production without using anything else than the standard Logic Pro package. There is almost nothing Logic can’t do. For years I’ve been very happy with Logic as my only DAW. But now I am even happier I can choose between the two for my royalty free music productions.
Here below is my view on my beloved Logic and Ableton workstations.
Logic Pro: a truckload with quality goods
- Logic is a huge truck, with a 24 shift gearbox. It takes time to learn how to drive it, some formal training may be necessary, and the back of the truck is fully loaded with about everything you may need for music production.
- All the necessary production tools are in the back of this huge truck:
- Audio and midi recording
World class virtual instuments
Top notch effects
Virtual amplifiers and guitar orientated effects
Ableton Live: easy to drive with all the essentials on board
- Ableton is for me an small van with an automatic gearbox. It is easy to drive, an easy learning curve, and the back is loaded with the most essential attributes for music production.
- If you need to deliver your goods quickly and without having to digg to deep in all the software Ableton is incredible.
- The program can be used live on stage, so almost everything works with a drag and drop function and no questions are asked.
To give you an example:
- I took a Rex file from my desktop ( this can also be a folder in the computer) and drag it straight into Ableton while the program is playing a song.
- Ableton will just keep on playing, the rex file will automaticly be synced and play with the track. No questions asked.
- I did the same with Logic. I took a Rex file and dragged and dropped it while a song was playing. First of all, the music stopped and I got this screen:
- I clicked OK and other screen popped up. I selected from the list the Fix Method I preferred (Crossfade), clicked OK and pushed the play button again.
It’s just one example I show you here, but I can tell this is how it works with most things you do. Ableton just does it when you drag and drop, Logic keeps on asking “Are you sure?” “Select how to import..”. That’s why to me Ableton is like driving a van with an automatic gearbox. Logic has more options and possiblities but has a much slower workflow. Now Logic does not do this to annoy you: there is more going on under the hood, so the audio processing is Logic is more optimised in my opinion. Look back at the example: Logic wants to know exactly what the program has to do when two slices of a Rex file overlap. Ableton has one standard way of treating with slice overlaps. It makes it faster, but it may not always be the most appropriate method.
Ableton is the fastest DAW around when it comes to audio processing. This makes it perfect for live use and to lay down your ideas very, very quickly. Can you use Ableton as your only DAW and make a professional production with it for commercial release? Yes, you can, but you will need third party plugins for sounds and effects and you will have to read the manual carefully, because it explains it detail how your creative decisions affects the sound quality of the processed files. I’ll come back to this in a future post.
In the meanwhile,
Stay Tuned !