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Max for Live represented an important milestone in music making software. It paired one of the most popular music production tools, and easily the most popular real-time workflow, with one of the most popular tools for users wanting to realizing their own musical software ideas.

Max for Live, as a result, can become a window into making Ableton Live your own.

Of course, figuring out how to begin doing that can be a daunting task. For many Live users, it ends somewhere around downloading some neat patches someone else has made.

What do you do when you want to attack Max for Live yourself?

Julien Bayle’s new book, Max for Live Ultimate Zen Guide, isn’t a bad place to start. The audiovisual artist, educator, and certified Ableton Live trainer has been a prolific writer of late. His text isn’t necessarily a soup-to-nuts, top-to-bottom guide to Max. But that is probably not what you want, anyway, if you want to begin working in Ableton quickly. Instead, what you get is an unusually lucid look at how Max lives inside Live – how it integrates with what Live can do. That makes it essential reading for anyone wanting to tinker with Live and make it their own. From there (see the Table of Contents below), it moves into MIDI and audio, effects and instruments, making it an effective bridge to a more in-depth education in Max or patching in general.

But it’s that ability to get straight to the point of what you need to know to integrate with Live that makes it special. And so, to give you a feel for what that means (and for more advanced users, perhaps even share a few tips), we’re fortunate to have an exclusive excerpt downloadable as PDF from CDM. It goes deep into the question of how to observe and interact with Live from inside a Max patch, complete with a lot of very specific advice from Julien – a bit like having him at your side.

Hope you enjoy reading (below). And we have a discount code, too, to reduce the minimum price of the e-book.

A recent AV set live at TLN Festival 2013, in Toulon (southern France).

A recent AV set live at TLN Festival 2013, in Toulon (southern France).

m4lcover

PDF download:
Max-for-Live-Ultimate-Zen-Guide_Excerpt [hosted at CDM; please do not link directly]

Our excerpt focuses specifically on the interaction between M4L and Ableton, covering:

2.6 One shot request with get and live.object
2.7 Observing properties in Live with live.observer
2.8 Calling objects’ functions with live.object
2.9 Changing properties’ values by using set & live.object
2.10 Controlling continuous parameters in Live with live.remote~

If that’s a bit too advanced, check out the free excerpt on the e-publishing site that includes the beginning:

https://leanpub.com/Max-for-Live-Ultimate-Zen-Guide/read

And the book is available on LeanPub:
https://leanpub.com/Max-for-Live-Ultimate-Zen-Guide/

Get an exclusive discount: With our special CDM code, through 12 December, you get the book for US$15 instead of the usual $30.

Enter code:
CdM_MaxForLive

I have to say, I’m also impressed by Leanpub. The publisher offers 100% refunds within 45 days, DRM-free downloads, and multiple formats, including PDF, EPUB, and MOBI (covering Kindle, iPad, and many other third-party readers). You also get lifetime free updates to the title. It’s also great to see people self-publishing, because it means that kind of control over revisions, a chance to enter niches big publishers might (wisely) avoid, and more money direct to authors, quickly.

Let us know what you think of the book – and any other resources you appreciate for learning resources like Max for Live.

The Table of Contents:

1 Max for Live Basics
1.1 What ?
1.2 Ableton Live Basics
1.3 Max for Live specific objects

2 Live Object Model
2.1 What is LOM ?
2.2 LOM’s Objects
2.3 How to read the documentation
2.4 Children, Properties & functions
2.5 Path, ID & navigation
2.6 One shot request with get and live.object
2.7 Observing properties in Live with live.observer
2.8 Calling objects’ functions with live.object
2.9 Changing properties’ values by using set & live.object
2.10 Controlling continuous parameters in Live with live.remote~
2.11 List and use objects’ children
2.12 live.thisdevice tool
2.13 Mode Preview & performances

3 JavaScript in Max for Live
3.1 How to use Javascript in Max for Live ?
3.2 Controlling Live API through JavaScript

4 Creating your own Max for Live devices
4.1 preset & pattr
4.2 Freezing Max for Live’s devices
4.3 Presentation mode
4.4 Limitations of Max for Live compared to Max
4.5 MIDI & audio specific objects for Live connection
4.6 An example of MIDI instrument
4.7 Example of a sound generator
4.8 MIDI FX example
4.9 Audio FX example

Finally, I want to close by showing some of Julien’s work. Here, working with Native Instruments’ Reaktor in addition to Max and Ableton, he shows off the innards of his audiovisual system (with Reaktor handling sounds, processed through Ableton, and Max’s Jitter environment providing visuals):

“Saturation” is an audiovisual work:

More:
http://julienbayle.net/

And download more M4L goodies:
Download guide examples
Free Max for Live patches at Julien’s site

  • Greg Lőrincz

    I wish this book existed when I purchased Max for Live years ago! I wish the author good luck as well as those who just started exploring M4L!

    • http://julienbayle.net/ Julien Bayle

      thanks Greg. I’m teaching Max for live since the beginning and just hope you enjoy M4L.

  • Tucker

    I’ve been waiting for a book like this for years. :) Just for clarification, does it come in physical format, or is it only digital download?

  • http://sequadion.com/ Sequadion

    Great to see a book focusing specifically on M4L. There is a lot of good stuff out there for Max/MSP, finally someone filled this niche as well.

  • paradiddle

    Thanks for the coupon, just bought this!

  • joshspoon

    Yum and at a discount

  • Darren E Cowley

    It’s a great book Julien, and updated already since i purchased… It could become quite addictive adding new chapters and the like don’t you think?? Could it build into the ultimate of all ultimate resources perhaps? Loving LeanPub a lot!

    • http://julienbayle.net/ Julien Bayle

      more to come for sure.

  • Josh McDermott

    Buying this on Monday!!

  • fr3udes

    Dear Mr Kirn, you’re absolutely right, there’s no news on Steinberg’s side, they didn’t release an interesting upgrade to a major music software, you can keep telling stories about iphones apps, right