Ableton Live 9 features, release date and news

Read the full Ableton Live 9 review

Read the full Ableton Push review

Ableton has confirmed that Live 9 and its new Push controller will be available to buy from 5 March. You'll be able to get your hands on the software from that day onwards while the hardware will be offered on a pre-order basis. It'll land at retailers soon.

Live 9 was announced back in October following a video 'leak' - alongside the Ableton Push MIDI controller. Promising to "greatly expand the creative possibilities of the software", the update has been in beta testing stage over the past few months.

Rather than radically overhauling Live, it seems that Ableton has chosen to build on the features that it already has.

You can read more about the major enhancements below, but highlights include Session automation, a new content browser, new sounds and an expanded and enhanced effects section.

You can also extract MIDI from audio and turn audio recordings into MIDI. When it comes to editing, you'll discover "new tools and an improved workflow".

One further thing to note is that Max for Live is now included with the flagship Ableton Suite bundle. This will cost $749/€599 as a download. The entry-level Live 9 Intro will cost $99/€79, while the Ableton Live 9 Standard edition will be available for $449/€349.

Upgrade prices will depend on which Ableton products you already own. New customers, meanwhile, should bear in mind Ableton Live 8 is now being offered at a 25% discount and includes a free update to Live 9 as soon as it's released.

UPDATE: Ableton has now posted a video of the launch event for Live 9 and Push on YouTube. You can watch it below.

Ableton Live 9 new features

  • Session automation: In Session View, automation can now be recorded in real time directly within clips. Automation can move together with clips between Arrangement and Session View.
  • Find sounds fast: Live's new browser puts all instruments, effects, samples, and plug-ins in one easy-to-navigate view. Drag and drop folders from anywhere on your computer, search as you type and navigate from the keyboard to find everything quickly.
  • Discover new sounds: Live comes with a large selection (3,500 in the Suite edition) of production-ready sounds, which were carefully crafted with the help of over 40 artists, sound designers and engineers. All sounds feature Macro controls for fast access to their most meaningful, musical parameters.
  • Get your sound right: Live's studio effects have all been reworked for even better sound and usability. The Glue Compressor is a new effect - an authentic model of a legendary 1980s console bus compressor. EQ Eight has an audition mode for isolating frequencies and an expandable spectrum display. The Gate and Compressor effects feature a Gain Reduction view which shows changes in signal level over time.
  • Extract music from samples: Live's new Harmony, Melody and Drums To Midi tools extract natural-feeling MIDI directly from the favourite parts of your music collection. You can also sing, tap a rhythm, play any solo instrument, then use Melody or Drums to MIDI to turn your recordings into MIDI clips that you can edit and reuse with any sound.
  • Edit the details: Transpose, reverse and stretch MIDI notes or warp clip automation and add curves to automation envelopes. New tools and an improved workflow allow fast and flexible editing of musical ideas.
  • Max for Live - now in Suite: The Suite edition of Live 9 comes with Max for Live and its many unique instruments, effects and tools. Max for Live itself includes 24 new devices such as a convolution reverb, new drum synthesizer instruments, MIDI echo as well as reworked versions of classics such as Step Sequencer and Buffer Shuffler 2.

Pricing and Availability

Prices start at USD 99 / EUR 79 (Live 9 Intro download version), USD 449 / EUR 349 (Live 9 Standard download version) and USD 749 / EUR 599 (Live 9 Suite download version).

Upgrades to Live 9 Standard / Live 9 Suite vary in price depending on the Ableton products you already own. More details at:

Ableton Live 9 will be available 5 March.

Ableton Live 8 is available for 25% off the regular price and includes a free upgrade to Live 9 as soon as it is released.

Ben Rogerson
Deputy Editor

I’m the Deputy Editor of MusicRadar, having worked on the site since its launch in 2007. I previously spent eight years working on our sister magazine, Computer Music. I’ve been playing the piano, gigging in bands and failing to finish tracks at home for more than 30 years, 24 of which I’ve also spent writing about music and the ever-changing technology used to make it.