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Digital Subscriptions > MusicTech > Jul-16 > Getting the best out of the Simpler instrument

Getting the best out of the Simpler instrument

Live 9.5 introduced a massive update to Simpler. It’s included with all versions of Live 9, so it’s something we all have in common. Martin Delaney loads it up

Ableton Live Live In Depth – Part 5

It was a surprise when Ableton announced Live 9.5 and Push 2 last year. Part of the surprise was that a major development like the release of Push 2 only came with a ‘point’ release, rather than something more grandiose like Live 10. However, the improvements and additions in 9.5 are available to everybody for free. The new update to Simpler, for example, is installed in every version of Live – Intro, Standard, and Suite – because it’s essential for drum racks and at least basic sample playback. So as long as you have Live 9, you’ll get the new Simpler. Check your Ableton user account for updates, if you haven’t already. Our subject for this tutorial, then, is the rebuild of Simpler, Live’s core sampling-playback instrument device.

Although Simpler has gone big in features, it’s still very easy to navigate. I guess there was no way Ableton could squeeze it all into one panel, so there are now tabs for Sample and Controls. As Live has matured from the early days (when it was easy to fit simple device interfaces into that narrow bar at the bottom of the screen), it’s got harder and harder to fit everything in – you see this particularly with some third-party Max For Live devices, which really struggle to include so many non-standard interface elements. As well as the two tabs, there’s a lower ‘control bar’ of common and global controls which are always visible, and a click of the triangle in the title bar opens the waveform display out into a larger window.

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