Ableton Live On New M1 Macbook Air
I have seen far more questions than answers on the topic, so I'll give some details around my experience. While not specifically synth related, this is the only music community I lurk around on Reddit, and I figure the info may help a few folks.
I purchased a new Macbook Air running the new Apple ARM M1 processor. There were a lot of concerns that run back to my days running programs on the pre-intel Macs.
I am pleased to report, however, that so far everything has been great. Rosetta 2 seems to be a marked improvement over the original. Ableton installed and, so far, runs with no issues. I'm getting good performance and the Air stays nice and cool, even when I've ramped up the program until it was using 50-60% processor. Last night I spend about 4 hours editing a song and the battery went from 100% to 82%.
My big worry was plugin support - I subscribe to the Eventide plugin suite, use some of the bundled Ableton plugins, as well as a few from SoftTube. Everything has worked like a dream so far - I had 6 tracks of audio running 2-3 plugins each, no crashes, no audio anomalies, and maxed out at 25% CPU usage.
Next concern was hardware - I have a Scarlett 8i6 and a Tascam Model 12 - both inputs function without issue. The big issue was with the Tascam - it doubles as a hardware controller, and so far I haven't been able to get that feature running. That's more likely related to Big Sur than it is the hardware on either machine. Still works fine on my old mac that has not been upgraded yet.
While I use mostly hardware synths, I have a license for NI Komplete Ultimate and will throw a few of those plugins on there after I wrap up my current track. I'll update the post once I have.
I'm not an Ableton power user, my workflows are pretty much limited to the above with novice mixing and mastering skills. If anyone wants me to test a specific workflow, I'd be happy to see what I can do.
TL;DR - Running Ableton on a new M1 Macbook Air w/ Big Sur has been a breeze so far and I'm really happy with the performance.
submitted by thelastgoodguy