Setup

30th June 2019

My current music creation setup is centred around Ableton Live on my MacBook Pro, but this is a fairly recent development for me.

4 years ago I decided to start making music again. At the time I still had a lot of older music hardware knocking around – a multi-channel mixer, a Yamaha CS6R rackmount synth, a Yamaha A3000 sampler but no software (a DAW) to tie it all together.

This equipment was a relic of my music production from 20 years previously when I had used Cubase running on a desktop Windows PC as my main sequencer along with hardware synths and samplers. Like many people I had carried it all around for a long time always hoping to re-start at some point. Occasionally I would set it all up and do nothing much with it, but it mainly lived in the attic gathering dust.

Times had changed since then and I now worked on a much more powerful Apple MacBook laptop which was more than capable of running decent music software. I also wanted to have a more mobile set up so that I could make music anywhere and not just in a “studio” – so the barrier to making music was lower.

I decided to sell everything I could on eBay and re-invest the money in a new setup based around my MacBook – a fresh start.

After trying out a few of the different DAWs I settled on Live and got an entry level version along with a small audio interface (Focusrite Scarlett 6i6) so that I could interface live instruments/mics etc. with the MacBook – this was in 2015.

Since then I’ve continued to use and learn Live and periodically upgraded it, eventually to the full studio version. Live is a fantastic piece of software. I feel very at home using it and have only just scratched the surface of it’s creative potential.

It’s not been easy over the last 4 years, I’ve fallen off the path a number of times, but I’m now consistently finding time most days to work on music and I have a setup that is productive, and I can use anywhere.

I’m still learning, improving and shipping. You can listen to my work on Soundcloud.

My next setup goals are to get violin playing and field recording back into my work…

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