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Akai Professional and Ableton teamed up over 4 years ago to start collaborating on the APC series. With may years of use by a large, and dedicated user community, the APC series continues to enhance the way we use Ableton. Users can find hundreds pages containing tips and tricks on Youtube, and other blogs, with suggestions on custom APC MIDI mappings in Ableton. And a few users and programmers strive to extended techniques from the APC series in bold and innovative ways by creating Ableton Control Suface Templates, and Max for Live devices that add features beyond the scope of MIDI mapping. This article will cover some of our favorite advanced APC modifications that users can find free of charge!
New to Live 9 users is the APC-Step-Sequencer by Mark Egloff. This Max4Live device is available a free pack to all Ableton Live 9 users. Here's what Ableton has to say about this new modification, "Inspired by the possibilities of Max for Live, Mark teamed up with Shane Hazleton from Akai. With the help of Shane's insight and hardware expertise, Mark created a patch that can be used for hours of beat making without touching the keyboard or mouse.", and "The APC Step-Sequencer converts the Akai APC40 or APC20 into a full-featured step sequencer."
Get this free Ableton Pack here: APC-Step-Sequencer
One of the longest standing and most used Control Surface Template modifications for the APC series is the APC 64-40 Step Sequencer Script. Compatible with Ableton both Live 8 & 9. Along with it's step sequencing modifications, this script contains note modes transmitting and alternative MIDI channels, and in various layouts, user modes for faders, and device control in the track control knob section. The array of features in this modification will see this script used for years to come with the APC series.
Get this free Remote Control Script here: APC 64-40 Step Sequencer Script
Have you ever wanted to trigger samples in the Drumrack, and trigger clips in the Live Session View? The APCP4d Max4Live device lets you do just so! Here's what the developer has to say, "You can play notes which give you sound and visual feedback, or you can play MIDI clips which will then also give you visual feedback. Turn the device off and the grid returns to its normal (previous) state.".
Get a link to this free Max4Live device from the developers website: APCP4d
Heading in more advanced territory we find the Monomodular, which the developer describes as, "...a modular environment for using (possibly multiple) supported grid-style controllers", and "...borrows heavily from the monome paradigm". In short, this modification alters the functions of an APC40 or 20 to act as the Monome controller, which in turn opens up the ability for the APC series to use Monome dedicated Max4Live patches. This modification may require users to learn a bit more about the Monome before diving in, but not to worry, there's plenty of documentation.
Get detailed information about the Monomodular, it's function with the APC Series, Max4Live devices, and Remote Scripts from the following websites: Monomodular Wiki
You don't have to stop at the previous modifications. Users can find dozens of alternative Max4Live devices that add wild new features to the APC controllers. From devices that can help alter clip color, and sequence effects, you'll spend weeks running through the possibilities of the APC series without tapping the user communities' resources.
Get a long list of Max4Live devices for the APC series here: MAX4Live APC Devices
Whether you are a customer or dealer, if you already own an Akai Pro product, or if you just have pre-sales questions, the Akai Pro technical support team is available to help!
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