the complete animated, annotated guide to ableton live shortcuts - osx

5. transport

the transport is an essential organ in the ableton live organism. play, pause, record, it all takes place here. you won't find too many flashy shortcuts here (though there are a few you may not have known about) but all of these are so critical to the daw experience we take them for granted.

play from start marker/stop: space

play from start marker ableton live shortcut

I know, wow right? as obvious & well-used as it is, however, it can't be denied this is probably the most used & most reliable shortcut in all of live & there is something to be said for that, I think.

continue play from stop point: shift + space

tutorial ableton live how to continue play from stop point

this is one I didn't know for awhile. usually, if I paused a track to make a change or say something to a collaborator, I would move the start marker with a click to resume the track. simplify that process with shift + space & impress your friends!

play from selection: spacebar

play selection arrangement view ableton live shortcut how to

at this point you're probably slapping your head more than a V8 commercial. I'm obligated to include all keyboard shortcuts & ableton's official list of keyboard shortcuts lists this one & so so do I. but let's take a moment of reflection on how cool this is - live is essentially the greatest sequencer of all time: you can create & organize sprawling arrangements but also interact with individual clips of audio in extraordinary detail. this is likely the simplest & most mundane expression of that ethos but it certainly is wonderful.

move insert marker to beginning: fn + left arrow

move to beginning OS X mac ableton live shortcut

if you want to jump to the start of your track you can do so with this simple shortcut. this will place the start point back there, so if you want to use that wonderful spacebar shortcut from before you can play the track back from the beginning.

record: f9

how to record tutorial ableton live keyboard shortcut

I find that on macs it's a little difficult to press f9 (as a combination of fn key & f9 key) with one hand & I often find it essential to initiate recording with one hand. this is why I recommend key mapping record to something simpler & saving it to your default template. this way you create your own keyboard shortcut & one that is much easier to use - necessary for such an essential command.

back to arrangement: f10

tutorial how to go back to arrangement view hide show browser OS X mac keyboard shortcut ableton live

if you find yourself swapping between arrangement & session modes, you've run into this little ditty more than a few times I'm sure. It's nice to have the keyboard shortcut to jump back to the arrangement immediately when necessary.

activate/deactivate tracks 1...8: f1, f2, f3...f8

ableton live shortcut activate & deactivate mac osx