In this lesson, we will learn how to record audio in Ableton Live. You will need to use this feature if you want to record voice, drums, acoustic or electric guitars, electric bass, etc.
Remember to set properly your audio interface to work with Ableton Live. You can do that in Preferences > Audio.
You can record audio in both Session View or Arrangement View. Although the examples are using the Session View, all procedures are the same for Arrangement View.
For this lesson, let’s assume that you want to record a voice in Ableton Live.
1) Create a New Live Set (Ctrl+N or Cmd+N) and select or create an Audio track:
Make sure that you have connected a mic on the audio interface. It can be either a dynamic or a condenser mic (for the last one, remember to turn on the phantom power of your audio interface)
2) Enable the In/Out section of Ableton Live. Click on the I/O button at the right of the screen. It will display the in/out section as shown below:
3) Let’s configure the Audio From option – that is, the audio source that we want to record. I connected mic on the channel 1 of the audio interface. So, I choose ‘Ext. In’ as the input type and ‘1’ as the input channel:
4) Ask the singer to test the mic and you will see that the green activity indicator will light:
5) Now let’s prepare the track for recording. We do that by clicking the arm button:
6) Set the monitor to Auto, which turns it on when you arm a track and turns the monitor off to play clips. Remember that you can also enable the metronome and set the tempo:
7) To begin recording, click on the record button inside the clip. It will activate the recording and play the metronome:
Notice that I activated the metronome’s count-in feature. It will make Live counts from 1 to 4 bars before it starts to record. In this case, I set the 1-bar counting.
8) After you record the voice, click the space bar to stop the recording. Click on the display view – Ableton Live will show the properties of the new recorded track:
Remember to adjust the gain in your audio interface to avoid clippings.
That’s it! Now you know how to record audio from any source in Ableton Live.