This isn’t strictly an Ableton thing, and it is Mac-only in this configuration, but it’s still worth knowing, and the same kind of thing can be achieved with Windows.
Youcan use Mac OS X’s Audio MIDI Setup to allow Live to access a MIDI controller connected to another computer on the same network.
First you need two computers on the same network. If there are any config problems arising from your router you’ll need to sort that out, or else create a computer-to-computer/ad hoc network!
Let’s say computer A has a MIDI keyboardattached, and you want to get at it from computer B.
Open Audio MIDI Setup on computer A, double-click the Network icon, and create a Session in the My Sessions box. Choose ‘Anyone’ in the ‘Who may connect’ list.
On computer B, connect to A using the Directory box. Also on A, use the Live Routingsbox to send the MIDI hardware device’s output to the network.
On B, open Live, and load a software instrument, such as Operator. Go into the Preferences/MIDI Sync tab, and choose the network as a MIDI track and remote source, then close Preferences.
Arm the Operator track, and make sure the network isenabled as a MIDI source in that track’s In/Out View.
Testing the latency
Now when you play the keyboard connected to computer A, the MIDI notes are received by Operator on computer B.
There’s a latency display in Audio MIDISetup, above the Live Routings, with an adjustment, although I get very low latency using this method. Like I said, if you’re having problems, bypass your router.
It’s not unusual to have multi-computer setups these days, and this is one tool that can make life easier – it’s awesome for complex studio or live setups.
It’s also handy if you have software running on an old computer that won’t run on your new one,and you need to incorporate it into your setup.