Ableton Live 12 is official, a major update to the popular DAW, but how do the Intro, Standard, and Suite editions differ from each other?
Ableton Live 12 was introduced on Tuesday, November 14th. It is currently in beta, but from the beginning of 2024, it will be available as a regular download. As in previous versions, Live comes in three editions: Intro, Standard, and Suite.
Spoiler: the differences can be read in long tables with just a few clicks on the official website. And yes, the Suite has everything. I scrolled through these tables yesterday because I was curious to see how the Intro and Standard have evolved in features and content.
The amount of information these tables offer is enormous, and you quickly lose track of what each edition provides. In this article, I’ll try to do this faster and only highlight the most important differences.
Ableton Live 12 Intro – Standard – Suite
All editions share common features, but there are differences in the number of available features and content (instruments, FX, etc.).
If you want the complete package, choose the Suite version. But what about the first-steps edition Intro and the more advanced Standard version of Ableton Live 12? Well, there are some good additions compared to Live 11.
The limitation of audio and MIDI tracks for the Intro version remains. The same applies to the audio inputs/outputs, send/return tracks, etc.
New Features & Content In Live 12 Intro/Standard
The core of Live has been updated in version 12 with many workflow improvements. Users of both Intro and Standard benefit from all new core features, such as the new sound browser with tags, keys & scales, tuning, and more.
A highlight of Live 12 is the new MIDI manipulation engine. The Intro community is excluded from this. A pity. This adventure only begins with the Standard version but also not completely. The new Euclidean Generator and Velocity Shaper are missing because they rely on Max For Live.
There are significant differences in content (devices, sounds, etc.). Users of the Live 11 Standard version can look forward to new instruments after their update.
The excellent Synthesizer devices made in collaboration with AAS (analog, collision, electricity, tension) are now part of the Live 12 Standard version. It’s a shame there is no addition for Intro users. The latest was the Drift synth device in the update 11.3.
Meld, the MicroFreak-style macro Synthesizer, is exclusive to Suite users.
Also, good news from the effects side for Live 12 Standard users. A new addition is Corpus, an audio effect device that simulates the acoustic characteristics of seven resonant objects—also created in collab with AAS. Roar, the new mighty distortion, on the other side, is exclusive to Suite users.
MIDI effects have remained the same, apart from individual updates and a new CC Control device available in all editions. The same applies to the modulators—the same selection with updates but no new devices.
Last but not least, each edition benefits from new sound packs
- Beat Tools (now in Lite, Intro + Standard)
- Build and Drop (now in Lite, Intro + Standard)
- Electric Keyboards (Standard)
- Orchestral Strings (Standard)
- Session Drums Club and Session Drums Studio (Standard)
- Synth Essentials (Standard)
- Lost and Found (Suite)
- Performance Pack with M4L devices (Suite)
All in all, each version offers a good selection of new features and content. It’s a shame that the Intro wasn’t made feature-rich to make it more attractive to new music producers, for example, by removing the track limitation.
The Ableton Live 12 Standard, on the other hand, has become more comeptitive. This is with the previously Suite-exclusive AAS synths and effects, more features, and improvements, including the new mighty MIDI mangling engine.
And as always, you get the most giant colorful bouquet of new features in the Suite version. No matter whether Intro, Standard, or Suite, there is something new to discover in every edition.
Ableton Live 12 will be available in Q1 2024. It will cost $99/79€ for Live Intro, $439/279€ for Live Standard, and $749/599€ for Live Suite. A discount offer is running from now until the release of Live 12.
During the promotion, all new Live 11 editions are 20% off as well as the Push 3. Purchasing any new Live 11 edition automatically entitles customers to a free upgrade to its corresponding Live 12 edition upon release.
Existing users can log in to their user account and check their upgrade price. From Live 11 Suite to Live 12 Suite, it’s currently 149€ instead of 199€.
More information here: Ableton