Ableton Live 11 is coming! Here’s all that’s new in the huge update

It’s been 3 years since Ableton announced they’d be bringing a huge new update to the beloved music software and it’s finally coming in early 2021.

Ableton Live 11 is the first full software update in years for the DAW used by thousands around the world. It adds a whole lot of good stuff to make your recording smoother, production more powerful, and new sounds and instruments to create with.


Take recording and comping

Live organizes multiple passes of an audio or MIDI performance into individual takes. Pick the best moments of each performance and combine them to create your perfect take. Or approach sound design in a new way by splicing together random samples from your library.

Linked-track editing

Link two or more tracks to edit their content simultaneously. This makes editing multi-tracked instruments or performances with multiple musicians easy and fast whilst keeping everything in time across tracks. This feature also works for MIDI tracks.

Artist demonstrates MPE using a Roli Seaboard, Push and Live 11’s new Note Expression View

Use your MPE-capable controller

Plug in your MPE-capable controller and immediately add bends, slides and pressure for each individual note in a chord. Add subtle expression variations, morph between chords and create evolving sonic textures.

What is MPE?

MPE stands for MIDI Polyphonic Expression. This way of using MIDI allows MPE-capable devices to control multiple parameters of every note in real time for more expressive instrumental performances.

Note Expression View

Edit the pitch, slide and pressure envelopes of each note to refine the expression of your takes. Or take your sound design further by sequencing polyphonic sound variations.

More expressive sounds included

Wavetable, Sampler and Arpeggiator are all updated to support MPE. And Live comes with MPE presets for each device that bring new dimensions of interaction and playability to your sound. The new expressive possibilities also enable polyphonic aftertouch on Push.

Tempo Following

Live listens to and adjusts its tempo based on incoming audio in real time, making it a dynamic part of the band instead of the tempo source that everyone has to follow. When you DJ, you can even turn Live into a tempo-synced FX box.

An Instrument Rack and Audio Effect Rack showing saved Macro variations

Macro Snapshots

Store the state of your Macros for later recall – perfect for creating instant variations to your sounds or builds and drops during performance.

Rack improvements

Configure your Racks to have between 1 and 16 Macros. Randomize the state of your Macros with the randomization button. Map this control to MIDI and perform drastic changes in real time to surprise your audience and yourself.

Note chance

Set the probability that a note or drum hit will occur and let Live generate surprising variations to your patterns that change over time.

Velocity chance

Define ranges for velocity probability for subtle, humanized variations in the dynamics of your patterns.

Do more with Follow Actions

Follow Actions can now be linked to the clip length, making it faster to create interesting sequences of clips. Scene Follow Actions let you create evolving arrangements. You can also set Follow Actions to jump to specific clips and enable and disable Follow Actions globally.

Check out their new devices here too


There’s a lot on the way to take the possibilities with Ableton Live to the next level. The new features may not apply directly to your process but there are a lot of workflow enhancements and even if the features don’t appeal to you, the new devices and sounds look great.

You can currently get 20% off of Live 10 and get a free upgrade to Live 11 when it launches early next year.

Writing about music, listening to music, and occasionally playing music.

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