Akai MPC Series - Synchronizing with Ableton Live



MPC5000 / MPC2500 as Master, Ableton Live as Slave

Use a MIDI cable to connect an available MIDI OUT of your MPC (such as MIDI OUT A) to an available MIDI IN of your MIDI interface.

 
Using MIDI Time Code (MTC) & MIDI Machine Control (MMC):

In Ableton Live:

  1. Open Ableton Live Preferences:
    1. Macs: Press Command + , to open Live Preferences or navigate to Live Menu > Preferences…
    2. PCs: Press CTRL + , to open Live Preferences or navigate to Options > Preferences…
  2. Press the MIDI Sync tab on Left Menu.
  3. Under MIDI Ports / Input, enable Sync ON for the MIDI port to which you have attached the MIDI cable from the MPC.
  4. Set Sync Type to MIDI Timecode."
  5. Close the Preferences window
  6. Press the [EXT] button on top-left of Ableton Live Project screen. This will enable External Sync control over the transport of Ableton Live.

 

Tip: You may find that enabling [EXT] with the Timecode all ready coming into Ableton, or after you pressed Play on the MPC, helps lock sync initially.

 

On the MPC5000 / MPC2500:

  1. Go to the MIDI/Sync menu.
  2. Set Sync Out to the MIDI output port on the MPC to which you have connected your MIDI cable (e.g., SyncOut: A (Master)").
  3. Set Mode to MIDI Time Code. Set Frame Rate to 30. (Note: Do not use 30D which is a drop-sync and is intended for video equipment.)
  4. Set Send MMC to ON."
  5. Press play or Play Start on the MPC. Ableton Live should now be playing in sync to the MPC.

 

Using MIDI Beat Clock & MIDI Machine Control (MMC):

In Ableton Live:

  1. Open Ableton Live Preferences:
    1. Macs: Press Command + , to open Live Preferences or navigate to Live Menu > Preferences…
    2. PCs: Press CTRL + , to open Live Preferences or navigate to Options > Preferences…
  2. Press the MIDI Sync tab on Left Menu.
  3. Under MIDI Ports / Input, enable Sync ON for the MIDI port to which you have attached the MIDI cable from the MPC.
  4. Set Sync Type to MIDI Clock."
  5. Close the Preferences window.
  6. Press the [EXT] button on top-left of Ableton Live Project screen. This will enable External Sync control over the transport of Ableton Live.

 

On the MPC5000 / MPC2500:

  1. Go to the MIDI/Sync menu.
  2. Set Sync Out to the MIDI output port on the MPC to which you have connected your MIDI cable (e.g., SyncOut: A (Master)").
  3. Set Mode to MIDI CLOCK."
  4. Set Send MMC to ON."
  5. Press play or Play Start on the MPC and Ableton Live should now be playing in sync to the MPC.

 

Ableton Live as Master, MPC5000 / MPC2500 as Slave

Connect a MIDI cable from an available MIDI OUT of your MIDI interface to an available MIDI IN on your MPC.

 
Using MIDI Beat Clock & MIDI Machine Control (MMC):

Note: Ableton Live only sends MIDI Beat Clock.

 

On MPC5000 / 2500:

  1. Go to the MIDI/Sync menu.
  2. Set Sync In to the corresponding MIDI input port on the MPC.
  3. Set Mode to MIDI Clock."
  4. Set Receive MMC to ON.

 

In Ableton Live:

  1. Open Ableton Live Preferences:
    1. Macs: Press Command + , to open Live Preferences or navigate to Live Menu > Preferences…
    2. PCs: Press CTRL + , to open Live Preferences or navigate to Options > Preferences…
  2. Press the MIDI Sync tab on Left Menu.
  3. Under MIDI Ports / Output, enable Sync ON for the MIDI OUT port to which you have connected your MIDI cable from the MPC.
  4. Close the Preferences window.
  5. Press Play on the Transport or a Clip to initiate sync. The MPC will now play in sync with Live.

 


MPC1000 / MPC500 as Master, Ableton Live as Slave

Use a MIDI cable to connect an available MIDI OUT of your MPC (such as MIDI OUT A) to an available MIDI IN of your MIDI interface.

 
Using MIDI Beat Clock & MIDI Machine Control (MMC):

In Ableton Live:

  1. Open Ableton Live Preferences:
    1. Macs: Press Command + , to open Live Preferences or navigate to Live Menu > Preferences…
    2. PCs: Press CTRL + , to open Live Preferences or navigate to Options > Preferences…
  2. Press the MIDI Sync tab on Left Menu.
  3. Under MIDI Ports / Input, enable Sync ON for the MIDI port to which you have connected your MIDI cable from the MPC.
  4. Sync Type to MIDI Clock."
  5. Close the Preferences window.
  6. Press [EXT] button on top-left of Ableton Live Project screen. This will enable External Sync control over the transport of Ableton Live.

 

On the MPC500:

  1. Go to the MIDI/Sync menu.
  2. Press Mode + PAD 7.
  3. Turn the data wheel to display Sync."
  4. Press the DOWN cursor.
  5. Use the data wheel to change the sync mode to Master."
  6. Press Play on MPC. Ableton Live will play in-sync to MPC.

 

On the MPC1000:

  1. Go to the MIDI/Sync Menu:
  2. Press Mode + PAD 9.
  3. Sync [F2].
  4. Sync In: OFF.
  5. Sync Out: A or B or Both (whichever MIDI input you plugged your MIDI cable into).
  6. Press Play or Play Start on MPC. Ableton Live should play in-sync to MPC.

 

Ableton Live as Master, MPC1000 / MPC500 as Slave

Connect a MIDI cable from an available MIDI OUT of your MIDI interface to an available MIDI IN on your MPC.

 
Using MIDI Beat Clock & MIDI Machine Control (MMC):

Note: Ableton Live only sends MIDI Beat Clock.

 

On the MPC500:

  1. Go to the MIDI/Sync menu.
  2. Press Mode + PAD 7.
  3. Turn the data wheel to display Sync."
  4. Press the DOWN cursor.
  5. Use the data wheel to change the sync mode to Slave."

 

On the MPC1000:

  1. Go to the MIDI/Sync Menu:
  2. Press Mode + PAD 9.
  3. Sync [F2].
  4. Sync In: 1 or 2 (whichever MIDI input you plugged your MIDI cable into).
  5. Sync Out: Off.

 

In Ableton Live:

  1. Open Ableton Live Preferences:
  2. Macs: Press Command + , to open Live Preferences or navigate to Live Menu > Preferences…
  3. PCs: Press CTRL + , to open Live Preferences or navigate to Options > Preferences…
  4. Press the MIDI Sync tab on Left Menu.
  5. Under MIDI Ports / Output, enable Sync ON for the MIDI OUT port to which you have connected the MIDI cable from the MPC.
  6. Close the Preferences window.
  7. Press Play on the Transport or a Clip to initiate sync. The MPC will now play in sync with Live.

 

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