Softstep or 12 step for Ableton Live?

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Joined: Fri Feb 01, 2013 2:17 pm

Softstep or 12 step for Ableton Live?

Postby jujubean » Fri Feb 01, 2013 3:20 pm

Hi, I want to record loops on stage during shows using Ableton Live, so which controller would be the best, the Softstep or the 12 Step? I feel like the Softstep will allow me to navigate better, from clips to clips, scenes to scenes, but I am not sure. I wrote to the Mc Millen crew but their answer was not super clear and I am still confused. Does anybody could help me? Thank you!!!
Posts: 86
Joined: Fri Jun 29, 2012 10:24 am
Location: san francisco

Re: Softstep or 12 step for Ableton Live?

Postby SLP » Sun Jun 16, 2013 8:55 am

Unfortunately you really need to use bome midi translator so the led's reflect what the looper is doing. And if you use bome then it doesn't really matter which one you use because bmt takes a note/cc and translates it in to another command that you program.
Posts: 25
Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2012 2:12 pm

Re: Softstep or 12 step for Ableton Live?

Postby altmuse » Wed Feb 19, 2014 11:53 am

Hey Juju,

I've been touring with an hour long solo looping piece with my MalletKat in 4.0 this past season and have found the 12 Step to be the way to go. The piece is by Julius Eastman and was originally written for 4 or more acoustic grand pianos. It took me two months to work out the elaborate scheme of looping I'd often need to begin looping on piano 4, while clearing Piano 1 simultaneously, etc. So, I think I really put the 12Step thru it's paces...I also own and love my SoftStep but prefer to use that for expression and mainly only the front 5 Keys since the back ones are not raised (IMHO the keys are a bit too small and if you are sitting as I often am when playing the DrumKat, it's hard to accurately hit the back row, be great if they were raised in future incarnations). That being said if you only need 5 Keys and want to take advantage of it's OSC capabilities or other advanced features such as sending rotary gestures, the SoftStep is a Monster! ;0

Anyway, I've posted an an attachment of how I re-labeled my 12 Step and will explain how I prefer to use it for looping.

1) I assign the "black" keys to the multi-transport buttons on my 5 different loopers (I begin the piece with all 4 pianos playing at once, this requires a 5th looper) and RENAME them capital 1-5 (I only bothered to actually label 1 & 5). I prefer using these for the important stuff because I can wear a shoe with a heel (Mexican Cowboy Boots are my go to, because they have a pointy toe) and rest my foot above the key before starting a loop comfortably at a bit of an angle.

2) I assign non-cap numbers to the front keys, 1-8 and mainly use those for clearing individual loops.

3) Since each key on the 12Step can send up to 6 MIDI note #s I also assign a second note to the raised keys in the back that are MIDI learned in Live to for instance clear looper 1 while starting looper 4. This was necessary to perform this particular piece and why it took so long to figure out…

Hope this helps, if you want to explain exactly what you want to do I might be able to help further.

xoxo, AK
12 Step re-labeling.jpg
12Step re-labeled for Looping with LIVE

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