How to move from Reason to Live?


I have been using Reason for years and got tired of their not having MIDI out and becoming unstable. I'd also like to try a more live/improv approach so I thought I'd give Live a try. I got the free version but it seems so limited it doesn't even feel like I'm trying it. So, I'm about to install a trial version but I want to make the most out of the 30-days period, which is why I'm asking Live users that have been in the same situation (got bored of Reason & switched to Live) to share their experience and give away time-saving tips about how to handle this software.

Edit: My music is not loop based!

Thanks in advance!


yawnG 5 years ago | 1 comment

7 answers

  • cygnal
    62 answers
    65 votes received
    1 vote

    Since you're coming from Reason, you're probably one of those people who don't like to read manuals. Well, you should read some of the Live manual introductive chapters. Live is a different beast to Reason. Quite different. In fact, Reason is different to anything else.

    As of now, latest release is Live 8 (8.3.4) 32-bit

    Live 8 64-bit and Live 9 are in beta phase.

    Here are the chapters from the 8.3.4 manual I suggest you read before you start using. The help is available from within Live, via "Help:Read the Live manual..." menu option. It's a PDF.


    In order of (subjective) importance:

    * Live Concepts,

    * Session view

    * Arrangement view

    * Clip view

    * Tempo control and warping

    * Recording new clips

    * Managing Files and Sets

    * Routing and I/O


    The Live manual also contains complete built-in effects and instruments reference.

    Good luck




    5 years ago | 0 comments
  • jestermgee
    39 answers
    41 votes received
    1 vote

    Unless it's too late, don't install Ableton! Instead,m hit Youtube and just type in "Ableton Tutorials" or tricks or something and just go through and see what people are doing with it.

    30 days is a rip because you cannot even scratch the surface with it. IMHO Reason is good but limited to a "box" of stuff. I find it way easier in Live than Reason, Cubase and dare I say it FL.


    I would also recommend focus on just 1 thing at a time. Check out how the relationship between Clip and Arrangement works (and the fact you can choose to live in only 1 or the other or both - this is a concept hard to grasp at first). Spend a week on the Drum rack, then on Sampler, Then on something like Operator then on something else. I actually make regular time each week to just browse forums, watch videos and pick up new techniques and tricks.

    5 years ago | 0 comments
  • Funk N. Furter
    129 answers
    122 votes received
    1 vote

    I used to use Reason. Main things I disliked - scrolling down, rack interface, confusing routing, lack of audio. I did not find it unstable.


    Live is easy, see the tutorials on my site, they are all free and mostly written, so very easy to follow


    You should try Session view even if your music is not loop based, you will be surprised how innovative you become in Session.


    Also get into making racks for stuff, get your knobs controlling them. Even a cheap £50 keyboard can control a whole load of stuff via scripts.

    5 years ago | 0 comments
  • SommerEngineering
    1 answer
    1 vote received
    1 vote

    I also switched a year ago from Reason to Live + Max4Live! Now, I feel free :) My way was: Just try it out, function by function. And try to forget all the Reason limits... start with e.g. load a midi file and then test all the devices :)

    Have fun with Live :) 

    5 years ago | 0 comments
  • lsc9x
    11 answers
    16 votes received
    1 vote

    I switched from Reason to Live, and am not looking back.

    But my transition was not without frustration, until one day I just "got it" and now everything besides Ableton seems unnecessarily complicated.

    Here's the thing:  Ableton Live was designed from the ground up to do the same things as other DAWs, adding a major live/experimental component to called "session view", but making everything else streamlined and simple.

    Once you "get it" though, it's am amazing piece of software engineering that is incredibly easy and flexible to work with.

    Just my 2 cents.

    Oh, I just saw your note about your music not being loop based!

    Yes, Ableton is heavily geared toward music loops, but you can easily NOT use it for loops.  You could do all of your arranging and composing in arrangement view and just use session view for hits and accents etc.  It's really up to you!

    5 years ago | 0 comments
  • mnieuwhof
    3 answers
    3 votes received
    1 vote

    I switched from Reason 6.5.3 to Ableton and I'm using Reason now as a rewire device.

    The main thing to get used to in Ableton was the session and the arrangement view.

    But I love the session view because it let you sketch a arrangement very fast. I love the trick the midi-editor has and yes... take time to read the manual...

    5 years ago | 0 comments
  • friedsunhine
    1 answer
    0 votes received
    0 votes

    I switched from Sonar to Ableton because of stability issues. Now I love Ableton. It's like an audio bulldozer.


    5 years ago | 0 comments

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