Dreaming of the perfect Ableton controller
Disclaimer: This post is not interesting to you if you’re not that much into computer-based music production and/or MIDI controllers.
I recently acquired a new audio interface. It’s beautiful and I love it. It’s as if someone went around and asked people what they are expecting from a good audio interface. Then that someone went home (i.e. to his/her company) and built it. The amount of available audio interfaces on the market is incredible and it shows how different people’s needs and manufacturers’ responses are. In my case, I was lucky enough to either have a very common setup that is being covered by this audio interface (and probably some others) or someone was eager enough to push for those exact requirements (could be a customer, product manager or someone else).
Regarding MIDI controllers I think we’re on a similar level. Especially when it comes to small portable devices there’s a big variety to choose from. Regarding Ableton Live controllers the selection is understandably smaller. Right now there’s Ableton’s own Push, Akai’s APC 40 and Novation’s Launchpad that kind of started it all back in 2009.* Then you have smaller versions of those that sometimes even work well with iPads and are arguably more targeted towards (casual?) musicians on the go. I tried out many of those Ableton Live controllers and since I always found some flaws that bugged me out I’m wondering whether someone will ever build the perfect Ableton controller for my needs (just like what happened in regards to the audio interface)?