Traktor Stems vs. Ableton Live: Live Performer Switch?

Look out Ableton, Traktor might take your job soon. As teased in yesterday’s video, Native Instruments new stems format is set to drop very soon, and many have asked if DJs will embrace the format. Perhaps, but a different group of people might embrace the technology: live performers. Will Ableton Live see an unexpected competitor to its platform? We think it’s a strong possibility.

Will Traktor Stems Change How Live Producers Perform?

Watch our recent interview with Stimming, a 100% live performer, who plays with Ableton and a few extra hardware pieces. Stimming exclusively plays his own material that has been separated into parts. Many live performers that play shows this way come to the same conclusions and break their live sets into 3-4 parts. Here are the common threads:

  • Usually an original song is isolated, bounced, and played back in groupings (commonly bass, drums, synths, vocals)
  • Groupings are then remixed, solo’d, and effected on the fly.
  • The original composition is respected, but allowing a significant degree of creative freedom.

Sound familiar? The Stems format that Native Instruments has developed completely addresses these needs and others quite well.

All live producers almost always add additional improvised elements on top. Usually these are drum patterns, synths or effects. Although some run software synths as plug-ins, and would require a DAW,  many prefer external hardware. For them, it might not only be feasible – but possibly even preferential to use Traktor over Ableton for live performances. Let’s break it down

Pros: Why Use Traktor Stems For Live Performances

Convenience of File Management

Two very different browsers

File size and browsing capacity are huge issues with preparing sets in Ableton Live, which works best with WAV files and lacks any real music library management aside from your own file structure. In short, Live sets are:

  • tedious to create
  • very large in file size
  • difficult to change out on the fly

This makes Traktor a significantly more useful tool when improvisation is needed. Admittedly, if you only have 15 songs in a Live set, this is really not an issue, but Traktor’s ability to seamlessly and quickly float from original material to DJ sets could be very appealing.

To load a “song” broken into 4 parts into Live is also more problematic, while the Stems format conveniently packages everything into one nice file that is easy to load every time.

Preparation Time

Traktor offers way more controls for quickly setting cue points, loops, and this functionality will all be the same for Stems…

Loops and Cue points – essential for live performance – are significantly easier to use and more friendly in Traktor. They also take up a LOT less time to set up. Ableton requires chopping up the song into parts as the core concept of cue points does not exist, and the loop functionality is primitive at best. For producers working with a lot of material (especially >50 songs), they might spend a lot less time managing their music in a more friendly platform like Traktor.

The Mastering Paradigm

In theory, Stems has solved a fundamental live performance challenge. When the original track was created, it was sent out to a high quality mastering engineer, and the process can never be recreated. How then do we manage to have the track hit and punch in the same way when broken up for live use? By blending between the mastered version and individual parts Stems promises to potentially solve this issue.

On the other hand Ableton has the upper hand in this regard supporting native loading of mastering plug-ins that could do the heavy lifting and get the live show nearly there.

Mapping Paradise

Powerful vs. Simple?

Traktor’s strong suit is most certainly the flexibility in which you can take control over the software. It’s a live performers dream interface, allowing for complex interaction experiences and detailed interfaces. While Max 4 Live users can tap into some pretty crazy potential with MIDI, the core mapping functionality is better in Traktor than Ableton.

Cons: Why Traktor Might Not Beat Ableton

A True DAW = Better For Designing Instruments

You can’t beat being able to design instrument racks, drum machines, and complex digital routing when adding live elements to an original performance. Traktor will never become a DAW, and until the dream integration of Machine occurs it will never offer integrated production tools.

Custom FX Racks

NI could easily make effects this powerful in Traktor.. but Ableton wins here!

For many producers and live performers, their FX racks and routing IS their sound. Utilizing stock Traktor effects is just not going to cut it. It would not be hard to roll out custom effects chains for Native Instruments – it’s obviously deep in their pedigree, but a near-term priority? Probably not.

Traktor vs Ableton For Live Performers: The Bottom Line

I don’t remain convinced that DJs will actually start to play multi-track files any time soon. While the idea sounds intriguing, the format introduces additional mental overhead to an already complex job. However, for live performers, who play the same material every night and need track isolation-  Stems + performance DJ software may just give them a new choice in platforms.

If you are considering putting together a live show that involves blending between original material and some basic isolation of parts then Stems might be a very viable option.  For those that use analogue hardware Traktor syncs up very well with drum  machines like the Roland Tr8.

Read next: more details on and Traktor 2.9

Abletonlive performersstem deckstraktor stemstraktor vs. ableton
Comments (74)
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  • Ross Edman

    Everyone seems appalled this is an article. I have performed and used Ableton for the last 7 years. I have gone through every combination of setups to even having Ableton control multiple outboard analog synths. I believe this stems idea is exactly what I would like to perform with. Layering 4 decks that each have 4 tracks and not having to put the time into massive Ableton sets is perfect. I will be embracing this immediately.

  • drno

    when did just playing records get so boring to listeners out there (not other Dj’s). wow.


    Hey who’s down to find some Billionaire investors to buy out both companies and merge them? My ultimate dream right there 🙂

    As someone who has been trying EVERYTHING to create the perfect DJ/Live set the past couple years I think only a few things can solve our dilemma. Agreed Ableton has to rework their software to be more DJ friendly and yeah the file management sucks. If we could even load multiple projects in one session, that would be a huge improvement. For example Project X is assigned to crossfader A, but you could also load Project Y which would be assigned to crossfader B without having to close the entire session and have all your devices, levels, efx for each particular Project load.

    Or Traktor has to really step their Remix deck game up. I haven’t played with stems yet, but in theory with loop based music like House, Techno, etc. I don’t see how Stems is really going to make much sense if the entire track is playing lineareven if they are on separate “channels.” I’m assuming it’s all linear and nor like you can loop the bass from 1:00 with the drum pattern at 2:45. The remix decks seem like a much better option and offer more control of your sounds. I even bought the S8 (now returned) and thought I finally found my saviour, but the remix deck technology just isn’t there yet. If the remix decks were even 50% effective as Ableton I could live with that. I would have liked to have seen NI develop that better.

    3rd solution a third party develops a way to perfectly integrate both Traktor and Ableton similar to what The Bridge could have accomplished… In the mean time though I’ll keep driving myself crazy trying to figure this out.

    • Dmarch


  • David Brown

    Can’t say I’m with you on this one, Ean. I like to think of it this way.

    Serato is a standardized DJ program with excellent DVS that has been around for years, and is very, VERY good at what it does, but does not grant flexibility of digital playing environment.

    Traktor is also a DJ program with excellent DVS, but puts more stock in things like live remixing possibilities, and through advanced MIDI mapping capabilities, can support an end-user-designed playing environment.

    Ableton is a production/performance application that can do almost anything EXCEPT DVS. Ableton has the most powerful flexibility of any of the three, in my experience, but due to is complexity and the fullness of options, you almost need to create a playing environment that works for you on your own, and understand how to make it work.

    I play in ableton by chopping songs, both my own and others’, into loops, clips, and sections that I tag with general info (such as key and BPM) and apply these to structures for live mashup and remixing. I use eight tracks for this, plus two other tracks for fingerdrumming on my MPD18 as well as a sidechaining signal on each side of the Xfader and two song decks for when I’m not stemming. As far as I am aware, this sort of setup simply is not possible in Traktor. No offense intended, of course.

  • midiman

    the biggest djs on the planet who play enourmous festivals like tomorrowland dont do anything like steams , sample decks, finger drumming and all that other complicated crap no one in the audience cares about. if you look at steve aoki on stage you see a guy who entertains the audience , throws around cakes , talks to the people. steve dont even mixes! his set is pre recorded! BUT the set is killer! the songs are great , people have fun!! why the hell should mr nobody care about all that stems shit? no one pays for it, no one appreciates it. no offense its all good to be a tech freak but its not necessary until you want to act in a very small niche for a very limited audience. i would rather be david guetta than richie hawtin.

    • ThisWasAGreatDiscussion

      for years you have been full of hate posts midiman .. please contribute to the discussion or go else where. you say the same stuff a lot

      this site generally centers around the progression of dj technology and how that technology translates to the progression of performance… most users are here for the craft itself not to be the guy throwing cakes

      • midiman

        thats the problem! deejaying is not progressing! its playing the right song at the right time and entertaining the audience! no matter if you use 2 turntables , traktor or something else .some guys say deejaing is boring! blending two songs is boring like the music that is played does not matter..thats whey they want lots of buttons to push but the art of deejaing is not having lots of complicated gear! what is important for deejaing? entertaining people and market yourself as a dj with your productions to get good gigs! stems dont add any value to your image on stage! the audience does not even know what they guy behind the faders really does… if you have a good stage persona do some funy things , interact with the dancefloor and play a killer set you beat any button pusher anytime! the audience does not see how complicated your set is technically but the audience notices if your music is good! playing some loops and crappy basslines on top of the song the people really want to hear because they know it does not add any value.

  • kinni

    this is not even relevant until we see that producers and labels embrace this and release material in stem format. this mat not go anywhere, or it may explode…

    • Dmarch

      imagine if the majority of tunes were sold in their parts…. as well as the whole.. that would be dope… but even then it turns in to a hodgepodge … can anything actually sound as good as x2 mastered tunes blended into each other? in terms of quality audio…

  • Frank

    “Loops and Cue points – essential for live performance –”

    Wrong.Those are essential for DJing but not for live performance.That’s where in fact Ableton shines – the clip concept/session view, which allows for true interaction and a live feel, while in Traktor you more or less can only play the full track.The Live clip concept is just more tailored for live performers.

  • evolakim

    I’m primarily a Live user. I produce w/ it and even when I use Maschine to start tracks the clips get dragged and dropped into Live for further sequencing and automation and actually building the track. I love Maschine and Traktor for their hardware/software integration and wish more than anything I could just use those programs alone to make music but Maschine is not a DAW and Traktor is not a complete solution either.
    When I “DJ” live I simply use Traktor and other peoples tracks mixed w/ my own completed tracks (WAV files.) I tried to integrate the F1and the remix decks but it was pretty much a no go. My F1 sits in-touched for years. For some reason I feel like I should keep it in case the remix decks ever become usable. One thing they were/are great for is sampling from the Main decks and doing little mini impromptu remixes. But that’s mostly just fills and tiny variations. I cannot understand why Maschine has not been integrated into Traktor yet! I’ve even just tried to use Live input on track C in Traktor and sync Maschine but it will not fucking sync. It’s crazy since they’re both made by NI. I have a Maschine Studio and even have a Komplete Kontrol 49 which I’m selling because it’s largely pointless and redundant when I own the Studio.
    I think the STEMS idea is cool just because it’s one file. Other than that I don’t see why it’s being touted as this revolutionary idea. We’ve been using STEMS for ages in Live and other DAWS. Ableton Live is endlessly customizable and while the browsing isn’t as seamless as NI’s, it’s still the go-to for people who are doing more than mixing other ppls tracks. I don’t see how STEMS and Traktor can compete.
    The Traktor mapping system is horrifying. So in-intuitive and just needlessly difficult. To me anyway. I use a S2 mapping made by beaubryte of the DJTT community and have been using it for years.
    I love NI and all their awesome hardware/software combos but honestly when I think back, I got way more done when I was just using Ableton and a Laumchpad. Now I have all this NI stuff and I spend more time trying to figure out how to integrate it in my work flow.

    Ok I’ll stop now.

    • noxxi

      your totally right, the kontrol F1 was useless for anything other that drum fills and sample triggering, not to mention the pages and modifiers instead of real controls, mine went untouched for about a year as well.

      • evolakim

        Yeah, for some reason I still hold onto it. IDK why. It’s a cool looking control and seems like it SHOULD be useful. It just isn’t. I even have awesome chroma caps on it. Maybe I should just sell it. The amount of gear I have is utterly ridiculous. The G.A.S. is sting w/ me. I’ve been jonesing for that new D2. (Is that what its called?) Those screens…..<3….
        Anyway, I'm primarily a producer but I'm always looking for better and more fun ways to perform live. Using my S2 w/ a mapping and DJ'ig two tracks is quite boring. I had hoped the remix decks would be revolutionary. Sadly, they were not……….for me. I think the STEMS format may have a similar fate.

        • noxxi

          jeez! everything you just said is exactly the same as with me, I too went and got chroma caps for it and held onto it thinking it should be useful! exactly the same thought pattern went into it with me also. I thought it looked useful, in fact about the only useful thing I did with it was using it to trigger FX, and a novelty idea of using it to control an entire set, which I mapped it for but never did in real life.
          I also got bored of mixing tracks, I mapped my push for traktor, even got the LCD working using max, but in the end it was too boring, its just too easy.
          Right now, i’m using the push with the launch control xl, my fellow dj is using a launchpad and an xl as well, and we are trying to replace the decks with daws, its something new and challenging and its getting me back into it again.

          Also jonesing for a D2 or an S8, but I think I just want to have it, I reckon it would gather dust.

          • evolakim

            When I DJ live I just use Traktor and an old S2 w/ a mapping. Deck fx, echo mod etc. Djing two tracks is boring though even using my own tracks. I have so much hardware I want to integrate or even just do a total live PA set. I use my Push and Maschine in the studio but have yet to use live.

          • noxxi

            we have been working on it for a wee while now, getting together every sunday to work on our setup and practice. one of the biggest issues is the dead air between loading sets, so to counter that we are usning 2 laptops with 2 instances of ableton, you could conceivably use traktor with the push, conveniently, the pushes user mode can be used to control traktor as it operates as if it were a second midi controller, pretty much seemlessly switching between the 2.
            The approach we are taking is replacing the traditional decks with daws, using a push and a launch control xl each. I’m currently working on an arduino based hardware midi clock to keep us in sync, but it can be done manually quite easily. only we are working on tracks together so i do some drums and a bassline and he does a lead and vocals, or whatever it works out as, so manually resyncing during a mix is not an acceptable solution for us.

            I love the challenge, its much more rewarding when we manage to play something that sounds good, it actually reminds me of the days when i used to manually sync traktor and get all excited when it sounded “ok”.

            I think approaches like these are what seperates the guys who have earned their stripes from the guys who throw heart hands 😛

          • SHONSTARR

            I just watched King Britt here in Philly do an entire live Deep House DJ set with just Push and a Korg Nano control and it sounded DOPE. He played a combo of other artists mainstream tracks and did some live programming and beatmaking on the fly… He actually inspired me to go back to the drawing bored with trying to do a DJ/Live Performance combo with Ableton.

          • Dmarch

            i am a DJ and been producing for 2 years.. i have the Maschine studio and PUSH… i am trying to figure out which combo to tie it all together… DB2 or DB4 or 4D or 92 K2’s or mapped APC.. NI sound card 10 or Go digital mixer and bypass the sound card… or Xone92 for the analog quality… i am going round in circles trying to decide

          • noxxi

            I totally hear you on that and I cant afford any of those mixers (boo) but having used midi controllers and analogue mixers, I might be able to offer my opinion.
            I found that using midi controllers was useful for 2 reasons, one was being able to see what was going on by looking at traktor, the drawbacks being a more cluttered screen, slightly less intuitive layout using 4 decks (because on traktor its like 2 channels above the other 2 instead of 4 in a row), and the other benefit was that if you dont have many controls or only a small controller, you can remap stuff like effects and what not.

            But recently I moved to using a korg km402 that i bought and restored. I think that the analogue mixer feels better to mix on, and the crossfader is much much faster than a midi controller, you basically cant scratch or cut with a midi contoller fader, people say you can, but its pretty shitty in real life. you also have a better interface for mixing using different sources (like you can just route maschine to a channel with its own soundcard, no pissing about with internal routing) you can record off it with multiple sources a bit easier.

            If your using maschine and traktor together, especially if your using 2 laptops, then id go analogue, maschine and traktor should both be able to make use of the audio 10 (did on my Z1) simultaneously (with native asio).

            One more point to be aware of is that, using something like a xone, only 1 program can use the midi at a time (usually the case) so the midi capabilities might be wasted a bit. but it totally depends on your setup and i’m sure your already leaning towards the thing that will work best for you.

            I dunno if any of that helps, and sorry its super long to read. 🙂

      • ShiftFunction

        The problem with the F1, which justifies a lot of complaints towards NI, is that it, and the Remix Deck concept, is almost entirely aimed at house and techno DJs that play a certain way. It’s very much a niche product. I bought mine off a friend who quickly realised he’d never even touch it, but I use it quite a lot. I’ve got a bank of different kicks, a bank of basses, a bank of simple synth loops and an empty one for taking loops from the loop recorder. The techno I play is all about that layering. Got a track where the kick needs more punch? I’m sorted. Mixing two tracks with sparse basslines but awesome percussion? I’m sorted. But I’ve still got Maschine for additional drums and one-shots.

        The fact that the F1 is Stems ready, as it were, is making me heavily consider getting another one. I think that’ll be where I go before I contemplate dropping £700 on a pair of D2s.

        • noxxi

          I mixed a few different genres, but pretty much used it the same way as well, it was decent for adding kicks, snares, and hats. never really got into the loop recorder personally. I kind of wish it could have been used for simple sequencing, but it never happened, thats what i thought they were going to do with it, I’ve got the push now, which in my opinion is much better. I love the push, whereas i loved the idea of the F1. Was cool looking though!

        • evolakim

          Yes. I still have my F1 even though it doesn’t get much use. I swear it calls my name and says “use me” lol. I may try to integrate it again. I play sometechno- ish stuff but also other styles that aren’t straight 4 in the floor. I think I’m going to go and make a remix set w/ my Maschine right now and have a lil Dj session.
          I guess the f1 is stems ready. I hadn’t thought about that. I guess I’ll be checking out stems.

      • Mike Kraze

        Believe it or not I ended up mapping it to Ableton because I felt it to be so useless on its own.

  • Trik

    Ableton could do with a 3rd view. Session, Arrangement and DJ.

    • David Brown

      I absolutely agree. If ableton could create a reasonably well-integrated DJ view, create DVS and jog scratch support, that would be golden.

      • Dmarch

        yeah and sort out a beat grid detection mode that does not warp (which changes the sound/groove of a track often!!) warping is a pain in the arse in Ableton and their browser is archaic

    • La Terné

      Somehow Ableton did this with the bridge, which by the way with 9.2 works again, the only sad thing of the bridge is that it only works with Serato live and not with DJ.

  • Andy Christoforu

    I will still stick with Ableton as I can use third party plug ins and still the best moulding tool for the DJ. APC40 or push controller and your well on your way to building all the stems to your set, without my APC and Ableton I would be lost.

    • Dmarch

      Ableton Live Performance Masterclass with Alex Banks (Monkeytown Records) (FFL!)

      • Dmarch

        interesting… a bit like the swimming approach

        • Dmarch

          STIMMING *’

  • Rave47

    How can the file managment be worse on ableton?
    Live 9 offers the option to add folders to the main left side bar. from there you can add any clip/track you like, much like VirtualDJs’ system- you arrange your files in folders on your PC, and then add a shortcut in the program. done.
    Traktors and Live systems are so different that comparing them is just wrong.
    I know a lot of DJs that just can’t handle Traktors’ file system, and alot that won’t leave home without it.

    • Dan White

      Let’s say in Ableton that you want to find the “next track” to play without everything arranged in your clip grid, and you want to maybe sort by things other than file name (artist, BPM, key). How would you approach this?

      • noxxi

        your both right on the money here, and it shows the difference of opinion (there being no right answer) I love both, I’m moving toward abeton and I’m not sure the stems will pull me back to traktor.

        I agree that the browser in traktor can be a pain in the ass, theres too much bullshit on it that your forced to have there.
        Similarly, finding tracks in certain keys on ableton would be a problem, but to counter that point, I’d say that you would need a lot less files during an ableton set, and artist info is probably a non issue (you are the artist).

        To switch sets, I honestly think your best bet is to have 2 laptops and treat them like seperate “decks”.

        Horses for course really, its nice to have the option of either though, fuck, why not both!

        • Dan White

          What are you forced to have? Pretty sure almost every element in Traktor’s Browser can be changed or removed, right?

          • noxxi

            the audio recordings, itunes and history. and when i open the explorer its the “demo, archive and the long list of drives (i have a few partitions),
            given the pretty cramped space the browser is left with (1366 x 768) its too cluttered for my liking, I would prefer to have music folders outside of explorer, and get rid of itunes history and audio recordings.

            Thats just me though, but the music folders being in explorer really annoys me the most, because you have no choice but to open explorer and have all the other stuff showing and cluttering it up. I could use track collection and playlists, but I am used to a folder structure not a tag structure (all my tags are complete though)

      • oli

        folders by key or bpm are an option. it works fine for me. i’m djing with traktor es well… but even with stems i would never leave ableton for stems, i can say already.

        • Dmarch

          Is it possible to use record box with ableton?

  • calgarc

    a program with a feature to do live stem looping vs. a program designed specifically for it. 😛

  • Peter Morris

    Ableton’s advatage over Traktor has been and remains its flexibility. Stems and remix decks are great but what happens if you want five parts or follow actions or to use other EQing other than a three of four band eq with a bipolar filter (two filters as on the come db, variable q etc) you can’t whereas with ableton you can. Also despite Traktor’s effects being very good you can’t do as many things with them as in Ableton where racks sends and all the various built in and myriad VST and M4L effects. Basically Traktor is great and stems is a great step forward but it is a lot more prescriptive than Ableton Live. In certain scenarios this is great but for people who want to break out of the industry prescribed workflows and performance styles it is still lacking

    • noxxi

      I have to say that I tried using the remix decks as a standin for using ableton, and it did not cut the mustard. The kontrol F1 is obtuse to use (why do N.I always cheap out and give you like 3 or 4 controls, with millions of modifiers, layers and pages?!) and unless your using 2 F1s at least you might as well forget it.

      Couple this with the glaring fact that N.I.s remix sets are pure shit, very sparse ( the artists sets cost a fortune), the remix set format is unstable (try reinstalling windows and getting them back!), and finally the one obvious truth… If your making your own remix sets using ableton, then WTF, you might as well use ableton! haha!

      PS. I say their sets are pure shit for one reason, say you have a good sound going and you want to progress to the next logical part of the mix, there are no variations on any of the other pads, simply a totally different bassline or lead thats usually totally out of key. It still has a place, but its not for me. Maybe I didnt do it right! haha! 😛

      • gigglekey

        Remix sets have this annoying thing where they changed the format after release, so newer Traktor versions can’t load older remix sets. I asked NI about it, and they confirmed the problem, but couldn’t offer a solution. That really put me off on using remix sets at all, other than as a sampler, which it is brilliant at. I’d like to think that informed their decision to open source the stem format.

        • noxxi

          Its so annoying, they have a lot of potential but the potential is quite severely limited in my opinion. What faith can any of us have in the remix set format, I spent a good few days building a couple of sets, then decided to reinstall windows for a cleaner work environment, totally lost my sets! well, they were still there but all of the loops had been disassociated with them so they were empty. Thats completely unacceptable in my eyes, I mean what if i had to do a reinstall the day of the gig for whatever reason, its happened before.
          Its a damn shame too, a rock solid format, with backwards compatibility, the compressor that everyone kept asking for, and a better prorietary controller with more tactile controls instead of pages and modifiers and they could have been amazing.
          I mean the new D2 and the S8 probably address some of the control issues and make them much more usable, but the format is still garbage and they still shat out on the number of tactile controls. I’m talking about the remix channel FX and monitor buttons and what not.

          Having said all that, ableton is a pain to keep track of when using it to perform, but its still much more suited to the job.

          • Jef Damen

            Well duh. If U reinstall windows U should have backed up your work. It is your fault, not the computer’s.

          • noxxi

            OMG duh REALLY?!!! I just simply had no idea! hahaha!
            I am extremely well versed in reinstalling windows, I do it very regularly, at least once every couple of months.

            I did back up my work, thanks, what I did not backup is the traktor settings found in the documents folder, as it does not take long to set up traktor and the remix deck information should be stored with the remix set, but it isnt, or at least it wasnt then ( i dont know/care if it is now)

            My remix sets were stored in my library partition with my music, so you would assume that would be a safe place for them, but no, they are fragmented across multiple locations, which anyone who knows about this stuff will tell you is a bad idea. If I update traktor, then they are lost, unless I migrate all my crap from my old installation(which could get corrupted) to my new one. (i.e you cant store them on an external drive properly)

            So not my fault, I mean I could have avoided losing the work, but it is/was a shoddy format and I didnt realise till after the fact.

          • noxxi

            Before you add say why don’t i backup my settings regularly, its because I shouldnt need to, the information, should all be in 1 package, with your loops and stuff included, similar to the ableton collect and save feature, hell at least in ableton if you don’t do collect and save it will try to find the samples for you. traktor is like “well even though the loops are in your collection, I’m not going to help you find them at all, nor am i even going to look for them”

            It could be a better system, it probably is now and thats probably why older formats don’t work with updated traktor versions, but I’ve moved on anyway, nice idea but still not 100% ready

          • Jef Damen

            Small loops–>Ableton // Tracks–>Traktor
            Just forget about remix decks, makes life much easier.
            I want to apologize for my impulsive reaction 🙂

  • Lu Ynoji

    Traktor is an absolute horror to horror.. that whole totally unintuitive list, you do have the tsi files tho..

    Live has a similar list but you have that ” midi layer” button where you can just assign something if you click.; serato has something similar with ” learn” i think.; way way way better than how traktor does it

    Traktor does have the power to map ALOT of things, a good thing.. but not sure if they are all as useful or necessary.

    Traktor is more straight forward, 4 decks.; that mixer, those fx, thats it.. for many people that is all you will ever need.. Live can be quite “WHA THA F* ” on that..

    In Live you can make things as easy or as complex as you want, still having the DAW power

    BUT ,totally depends what your background is.. and i understand both sides

    i found my way with Live, yes there is some preparation, but that is again as easy or as hard as you want it to be.. not everything has to be warped, nor precisely looped, nor looped in general.. but yes there is more preparation thanTraktor

    • noxxi

      plus there are a lot of unresolved mapping bugs, particlarly when trying to map hotcue type to leds, that is such a massive pain in the ass, you have to work around it by using modifiers and mapping each led like 7 times, similarly having an led light up if a particular loop size is activated is also a nightmare.

      Despite the tedium , i’m still grateful for the power of the controller editor, but it could be improved a lot

  • Joan Torruella Besa

    why does not ableton and native instruments team together to learn things from each other and collaborate to create the ultimate dj/live performer / producer software?

    • deejae snafu

      That would be like asking ford and Chevy to team up on the perfect truck….

      • Peter Morris

        Serato has nothing to do with Native Instruments…

        • Noisik

          I’m well aware of that. My implied point was that Ableton have already partnered with Serato, it would be unlikely that they would integrate a rival NI platform at this point.

    • ShiftFunction

      It’s not in NI’s best interests when NI also have Maschine to think about.

      • Dan White

        This is the REAL question – why doesn’t NI really integrate Maschine and Traktor together?

        • ShiftFunction

          I read a while back that they were working on it. The article was on DJTT ages ago about an off the record Q&A on the forums where it was revealed that the CDJ900NXS and the XDJ1000 were getting HID treatment and that Maschine integration was coming further down the line as it was “months away from ready”. This was back around Feb/March I think.

          If I can find the link I’ll post it.

          • Dan White

            I also remember this and had it confirmed from Native Instruments in 2013, I believe. I suspect there must be some other forces at play – for instance, spending time instead developing the Maschine Studio and S8 interfaces sucking up a lot of resources in the company. Just my speculation though!

          • ShiftFunction

            I reckon the reason we haven’t seen it yet is because it simply isn’t feasible with the current Traktor code. I’d expect Traktor 3.0 to have been re-written from the ground up and that will be when we see integration. I think the S8, D2 and version 2.9 (that drops on the 3rd!) will be like Traktor S4 hard and software that lead into Traktor Pro 2.

          • noxxi

            I think your right, it would require massive changes to the way the GUI works in traktor, as well as massive changes to the browser structure.

          • ShiftFunction

            If I were to stab in the dark, I’d think Xmas time will see 3.0 appear. Perhaps with an incremental update to Maschine too.

            Or that could just be my wishful thinking.

          • noxxi

            I’m actually super excited for 3.0, I just really want to see what its all about! 😀

          • ShiftFunction

            You and me both! If the jump to Maschine 2.0 is anything to go by, it’ll be a paid upgrade, but one well worth the money (D2 owners will likely get it for free).

            Feature wise, I expect big things. Could be a true game changer.

    • noxxi

      wouldnt it be nice if they could at least team up to create a new timing format, midi beat clock sucks ass.

  • ShiftFunction

    A lot of the cons would be completely eliminated upon integration of Maschine. If Traktor also moved to include VST FX, even more so.

    I’d prefer to see Maschine coming in as a 5th deck of sorts, kind of like how Ableton looked on the Serato Bridge. Then dedicated FX bus channels. Even loaded as a VSTi would keep me fairly sweet. Screen real-estate is less of an issue with Maschine too as even with the Mk1, most of what you need is right on the hardware.

  • stefanhapper

    I think this is a bit of an optimistic view of stems. The big difference is that stems will mostly be coming from other producers while Ableton users will mostly create their own sounds.

    But just do a survey on your site or Facebook page to see if people really consider Traktor with stems as an alternative to Ableton live.

    • Ezmyrelda

      Really? The closer this comes to being a reality the more ideas I have for actually using everything Traktor offers me to perform my bands music in a way that makes sense..

      I produce in Ableton. Stem out everything I need for the live aspects. Have drums on “channel”, bass on another and our band leader who is on guitar and atmosphere is free to play how they want without having to worry that everything will get out of hand..

      Obviously.. These kinds of options will only make sense for people with the interest and will to use them in different ways.. But for me.. This is exactly what I’m looking for in order to really make all the options I have available shine.

      I imagine I’ll probably by a couple of stem tracks from other artists here and there.. Maybe more as the format becomes more accepted.. They will certainly be welcome for my DJing aspects.. but as an artist who wants to mainly perform their own tracks.. this will open everything up.

      • stefanhapper

        And why would you take the time to export from Ableton (and be limited to 4 tracks) and then re-import to Traktor?

        • Dubby Labby

          Mix with traktor which is funniest than mix in ableton (mixing pov) and scratchable things… Did you forget ableton can scratch nothing (even with the bridge or ms. Pinky workarounds that are far from remix decks/stems possibilities)?

        • Ezmyrelda

          Limitations give a good, and proven ground for creativity. I don’t want to perform in Ableton. With all that is available to me there.. I still haven’t found a comfortable place to perform from there. I have a launchpad, I now have an MF twister.. I still don’t really want to perform in Live. Even had I the midi controller I’ve been mentally developing for years I wouldn’t have the immediacy I would have in Traktor. I don’t want to noodle. If I had to perform in Live I would noodle constantly. I eventually want to give fans of my music a representative but fresh interpretation of my material. With my partner on guitar and vocals and me on my equipment (Z2, F1, X1 Mk2, MF Twister) Traktor does already and will with stems provide me the ability to do exactly what I want with the least amount of hassle and most amount of flexibility. So.. 4 stems track, plus one other track deck for the next song. Remix deck, and other remix deck for live breaks.. Yeah. 12 pseudo parts plus the drum section.. Plus live guitar and vocals.. phew! that’s enough for me..