Ableton Live Immersion

(Note: this is a TWO-DAY weekend workshop)

Date: See Workshops page

Time: 10:00 am to 5:00 pm (both days)

Cost: 300 euros — lunch, snacks, and drinks included

Location: big brain audio, Berlin

Instructor: Brian Smith.

Language: English (German and French also spoken by instructor)

Maximum Number of Participants: 6

Level: Beginning-Intermediate

Target: For people who are new or relatively new to Ableton Live and want to develop strong foundations for using this extremely versatile and creative tool. This is also an excellent refresher course, including for those who have upgraded from Live 9 to Live 10.

Description: During this weekend course we take you through the entire production process by building a track from basic idea to mixdown. The goal of this course is to develop, improve, and accelerate your production workflows with Ableton Live 10. We will also learn to use Ableton Live with Push 2.  (Each workstation includes an Ableton Push 2.)

The course begins with recording and editing audio and MIDI. We will also cover the use of different kinds of templates (sets, tracks, devices, and racks) that will accelerate your music creation. You will learn various workflows — including many editing improvements in Live 10 —  using both the Session and Arrangement Views to generate ideas and create an arrangement. The new creative features (Audio-to-MIDI, clip automation recording, advanced editing, analog filter emulations, etc.) of Ableton Live 10 will also be covered during this weekend course.


setting up your Ableton Live environment

  • optimizing preferences for your setup
  • setting up keyboards and controllers
  • customizing your environment
  • favorites
  • Push integration

recording, importing, and editing audio

  • recording strategies: Session or Arrangement?
  • recording vs. importing audio
  • editing audio in Live (Session View vs. Arrangement View)

working with MIDI

  • using Live’s Instruments vs. external plugins (VST/AU)
  • MIDI editing modes
  • Audio to MIDI and back
  • using grooves and making your own groove templates

getting your ideas into tracks

  • beat programming with Ableton Live
  • track building techniques
  • choosing and using a MIDI controller
  • using Push as a musical instrument

clip techniques

  • warping: Modes, Warp Marker editing, best practices
  • follow actions, (un-)linked envelopes
  • multi-clip editing (new in Live 10)
  • clip automation

instrument and effects racks

  • working with library racks
  • building your own rack libraries
  • setting up macro assignments in racks
  • building chains


  • organizing ideas: Clips and Scenes in Session View
  • organizing structure: Clips and Structure in Arrangement View
  • improvising arrangement ideas on-the-fly
  • Back to Session: what is happening where?
  • developing workflows between the Session and Arrangement Views
  • shortcuts and workflows in Ableton Live 10


  • compressors, limiters, and EQs: what, when, and how?
  • side-chaining and parallel compression
  • using Utility (new features in Live 10) for cleaner mixes
  • grouping and routing
  • send-return: best practices
  • tips for creating a transparent mix