Review: Remotify Makes Ableton Control Surfaces Scripts A Snap

Remotify is a platform to challenge the unknown void of scripting in Ableton and bring custom control surfaces to the masses. To many, Ableton scripting is a dark world full of confusion and endless frustration. In this complex world, it seems like only the truly worthy are able to unlock the mysteries coded in Python. Why can’t every controller Automap like an APC40 or a Push 2? The reason for all this heartache boils down to one thing: there’s no UI available for Ableton scripting.

Product Reviewed: Remotify
Price: Free version with basic functionality, Pro (with extended functionality) is $57 (one time purchase), 1-month subscription at $9
Platform: Web-based

THE GOOD

  • Free tier for basic functionality; Pro version for your wildest scripting dreams come true
  • MIDI Learn support (with Chrome)
  • Shift + Modes available to create virtual banks (Pro only)
  • Easy troubleshooting messages + comprehensive documentation
  • One-to-one support with great response times

THE BAD

  • No easy way to change feedback color for RGB devices
  • Could use a script wizard with common scenarios (similar to how XtremeMapping does for Traktor)
  • Missing copy/duplicate commands to replicate similar parameters
  • Commands sorted randomly in the main list – you’ll have to hunt to find the command just added

THE BOTTOM LINE

If you’re new to scripting in Ableton, this tool is a must. It will not only save you a massive headache, but also allows you to learn how it works as you go since Remotify also gives you an uncompiled “.py” version of the files so you can have a look at the code. This app will make basic mapping tasks a breeze.

For the more experienced user, the app can help tame complicated scenarios and perhaps provide the inspiration needed to finish that ambitious project you’ve been continually putting off until you really “get it”.

Session Box: A Quick Example Of Remotify’s Power

Remotify Screenshot

People who want basic mixing controls can get away with manually mapping them inside Ableton’s own UI. But if you want something more versatile – such as having those follow the selected track in larger projects or Ableton’s famous Session Box to easily control clip launching – then this platform is the tool you need.

If you want to create your very own Session Box script you’ll assign just a few lines.

  1. Once you click on “Add a New Mapping” and select “Session Box” you can assign how big you want it to be.
  2. Click on each of the boxes, filling in the CC/Note number manually or using the MIDI Learn tool (Chrome). Assign a name to it and save it
  3. Click on “Add A New Mapping” again and select the Session Navigation element making sure the “Direction” field matches where you’d like the box to move when the button is pressed. Repeat this step for all 4 directions.
  4. Give your script a name and hit the download button.
  5. That’s it! You just need to follow these easy steps to import it into Ableton.

As you can see the process is fairly straightforward and regardless of having mapping experience on other software or not you should be right at home with it in no time. We are quite exited for it’s future and hope it continues going strong as it has so far to keep the mysterious door of scripting open to anyone.

Have you done advanced controller mappings in Ableton before? Check out Remotify and let us know your thoughts in the comments below. 

About the Author

matias

  • Who? Matias
  • Years experience: DJing since 2005 and producing since 2008
  • Why he’s helpful: Matias has used nearly every DJ software out there and has helped create tons of DJTT’s best mappings (with over 25k downloads). He’s our lead DJTT product expert and can answer pretty much any gear question too. Think of him as the super helpful guy behind the counter at the record store who has lots of great suggestions on what gear is perfect for your unique tastes. You can chat with Matias on live chat in the DJTT store (he gets nearly 100% positive feedback ratings).
  • sinesthetix

    Looks very promising!

  • CUSP

    No, the reason we don’t all have access to scripting in Ableton is that Ableton has kept this option locked into it’s most expensive option. It’s one of the reasons I’ve stepped away from Ableton until they get their proverbial “shit straight.”

    Everyone “knows” that the future of DJing has something to do with customization, and that usually means scripting and user-changeable templates. If scripting is available in your software, it usually is unsupported and/or very expensive to unlock.

    • deejae snafu

      dude, while i admire your consumer first approach, you have to support the people that are putting in the work and pioneering the tools for us. the folks at ableton have been there for a decade tirelessly hammering away with an awesome talent and dedication to their product , that is rarely seen in a developer. it should come at expense to the end user to exploit the fruits , because the toil to pave the way is great.

      • CUSP

        There is no good reason to lock away advanced scripting / UI controls like this under the most expensive package (probably the reason this software exists). It used to be that you could buy the Cycling ’77 support on its own and “open up the hood” of Ableton, but that changed in Ableton Live 9.

        I (and I presume a few others, including the team I was casually helping) had been working on an interface that could have been ‘Ableton DJ’, but once we realized that it would cost more for the user to buy the highest teir Ableton package than it would to buy any other professional DJ software program, we let that project due on the vine.

        It’s a shame too, because having all the power of Ableton Live behind a DJ interface would have been extremely powerful and customizable.

        I haven’t dug too far into what this software does, but I doubt it will allow you to create your own DJ software with Playback and Component views. I had wanted to finish the project, but my programmer friends decided to move on to something else and just lost interest in the project.

        Maybe someone else will aspire to ressurectinv the idea of creating Ableton DJ, but you really need the under-hood access to get that to happen right now.

        • deejae snafu

          I guess im confused about something… if youre going to release a mod or app that works on top of ableton, it stands to reason the end user would have to be an owner of ableton live, or if it is a max tool, then an owner of max, in order to use it. so how would it end up costing a legit owner of Live anything extra to use your software you guys were/are working on?

          • CUSP

            I don’t know, that was something the programmers told me. I was a technical consultant regarding the operational desires of a DJ having lighting, video, and live production. Apparently, a full version of Max4Live was necessary.

  • The way they pronounce Ableton tho.

  • John Dru

    We should add remotify to the software list on maps.djtechtools.com so people can share their mappings

  • ghal gol hajt

    you can decompile .pyc from the midi remote scripts folder by a tool called easy Python decompiler. Then with a sample notepad you can open the decompiled files and then after any modification you can recompile it again with IDLE.

  • JP

    This tool is great! Been using it for months and they keep updating capabilities and take user feedback seriously. You have to go Pro to get in there deep with your scripts but, its easily worth it.