« Live 9 Magic on a Beginners' Scale »Published on 04/06/15 at 10:35
Intro's biggest flaw is the maximum of 16 tracks and 2 sends. However, this is a very high and achievable ceiling for beginner producers, and the presence of acclaimed Ableton studio tools and use of clips make this slight limitation well worth it. Take note that the Intro version also does not include the virtual instruments of Suite like Analog and Operator, and with a relatively limited set of preset sounds you will need to rely somewhat heavily on your own VSTis and samples. The audio and MIDI effects of the higher versions are included in Intro, and serve their purpose well at minimal CPU usage--especially utilizing the program's send channels.
The lack of integrated instruments and smaller user library actually make Live 9 Intro much more lightweight than its full-featured brothers, and on my mid-level rig with 3.2GHz and 6GB RAM it functions perfectly. Though it may be a problem for very advanced projects, the 16-track system in Intro generally results in no latency problems.
Despite this need for external software to function at full potential, Ableton Live 9 Intro is clearly one of the best beginner DAWs available at its price range simply because of its integration of features that differentiate Live from other DAWs. At a very reasonable $99, the program provides an excellent introduction to the Ableton Live 9 system in a manner very suited to Live beginners.