Ableton Live

My ES-8 is for sale at the moment, but if the Push arrives before it leaves, I will try it out and see how well it works!

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That’s the exact reason why I’m happy there’s the 30 day return option in case there’s need for that :slight_smile: (FWIW, the standalone Push works off battery as well, of course the run time is ridiculous by laptop / iPad standards but ought to still be good for a wireless writing session on the couch / in the yard!)

For me the built in MPE grid is a huge factor in why I decided to order one. Not the only one, of course. Just need to try out personally how fun it is to navigate etc., and see if it stays, but to be honest I’d be pretty happy having a good MPE playing surface + all those synthesis and fx options in one box, even without the sequencer side.

(Full disclosure: I haven’t used Push 1 / 2, so it’s going to be a new experience in that sense as well.)


You might not think about it because you’ve been doing it for years, but there’s actually quite a lot of work involved in pushing a mouse around or poking your finger around a trackpad. Once muscle-memory is established, it can be just as quick (or even quicker) to use a dedicated control surface like Push.


I was initially very excited when I used the Push 2 about how it took a bunch of mouse actions and turned them into something more akin to an Elektron box or something of that ilk. Even if if you’re shuffling through all of Ableton, it felt like a new way to come to familiar devices and the on screen interfaces for those native devices was miles more pleasant/legible than the base Ableton interface.

now my Push 2 lies largely unused (having waited until exactly the wrong time to try to sell it), because i just simply don’t do enough work in the box for that new interface to really feel like it’s doing much for me.

i don’t think i’d describe the push interface as clunky, i actually think the ableton team did an amazing job at putting a new face on parts of the software, but you have to be very willing to utilize all of ableton, rather than in the daw interface where you can choose how deeply you want to engage on their terms.


You’re right, but with touch display it’s so easy to navigate and choose what you want. The knob scrolling presets on Push 3 remind me of an old Onion TV with Apple Wheel parody. Generally, I think this kind of UI is pretty dated, but right it’s not that hard to learn your muscle memory anyway.

don’t all grooveboxes work like this?

scrolling for samples/presets seems like a staple among Elektron, modern MPCs, etc.

it might be clunky, but eventually if you have a long list of stuff there’s only so many ways to navigate it.


Right, maybe that’s why I haven’t used any groove box for longer :wink: - but yeah my point is that I guess I would prefer much simpler MPE grid without display or devices with some sort of touch interface or a mix like Embodme otherwise I would be more happy using apps on iOS

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It sounds like a “different strokes for different folks” type situation. :slight_smile: I’m not fond of iOS musicmaking at all (I do like iPads for gaming, web browsing etc.), and I loved my Linnstrument, but disliked the fact you always need a separate sound source for it.

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Planning on getting a push, and have an es 8, sorry for probably a dumb question but what would the ADAT link between the two be useful for beyond using es8 with a usb connection and as an aggregate device?

16 channels of CV in and out to the Push using Live’s CV tools instruments, as well as multi-channel modular-level audio i/o.

ES-8 only gives you 4 inputs, instead of the 8 ADAT supports, which is why I’m swapping mine for a module which supports all 8 input channels.

oh, a way to access the es8 IO hardware with push in stand alone mode then i guess. but would it add anything if you are using push as a controller?

If you are using Push as a controller, you could use Push as your main audio interface and then connect the ES-8 via ADAT, you wouldn’t have to create an aggregate audio device. Or you could use the ES-8 as your main audio interface and likely connect the Push over ADAT. If you have no issues with using an aggregate audio device there wouldn’t really be a benefit, since the ES-8 has both USB and ADAT.

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Using aggregate device one can choose to work at double sample rates and full channel count, just to mention one practical difference.


Never personally had an issue with ADAT sockets, but I did just want to chime in and say that although they aren’t the norm, beefy optical cables do exist!


Andrew I saw a video of you sequencing a Pulsar with Push3 and it was such a sick setup. Is there any latency or jitter when you record your drum machines into Push? I saw that the buffer can get down to 32samples which is fantastic so it sounds hopefully like the Push3 is a legit hardware recording solution that doesn’t need a 3rd party sync clock involved.

I’m curious if the monome’s M4L devices for Ableton and Crow will work on The Push 3 standalone?

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Beautifully understated.

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I will send my Push 3 back on Monday.

So far I have spent 3 hours without being able to play any music. I don’t want to make the product look bad, but here are some of the problems I’ve had:

  • fully charged unit plugged into mains will not boot, had this half a dozen times
  • turns on and gives an error message about a Live set I never created
  • the same error message appears every time I switch on the unit, if it actually boots correctly
  • when it does boot, it takes a minute (the same amount it takes to turn on my M1 iMac with a record ready Live template opened up)
  • unable to connect to my wifi, only worked after a couple of reboots
  • 1.1 update was available immediately, took another 15 minutes
  • authorisation process assigned the wrong licence, had to find out how to change it, fixed itself while I was trying to find info in the manual (?)
  • feels sluggish and I have not made any sound yet, nothing has been recorded
  • 250GB already down to about 206GB after installing the 1.1 update
  • endless scrolling to get anywhere, the top right encoder only goes left and right, not up and down (so you mainly have to use the arrow keys to get around)

There was a similarly worrying comment in the other forum about sluggishness and random crashes / bugs. Not much early adopter feedback otherwise except for synthfluencer / early access videos yet - it seems roughly half of the few people that have commented are enamoured by the Push and the other half highlight multiple issues and feel unhappy.

It does seem like it’s going to be a couple of busy evenings next week trying out whether things feel acceptable or simply too beta after getting everything running…


Indeed, I’ve been using these from Thomann / pro snake, which are surprisingly flexible, too.

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