Using Novation Automap for iPhone/iPod Touch to Wirelessly Send Keystrokes to Ableton Live

I've been looking for a way to load sets without having to touch my computer. Sadly, you can't MIDI map file browser elements. I did find a pretty cool way to do this using Novation's Automap for iPhone and iPod Touch.

I got it configured and working on my iPhone and have been using it for a few days and it is working well for me.

In addition to the app, you need Automap Pro as it supports assigning keystrokes and multiple keystrokes to buttons. Pro also supports multiple Automap devices.

In the screen shot on the right, you can see that I assigned a key sequence to take mouse focus from a scene into the file browser to load a set. I've also mapped "n" and "enter" so I can dismiss dialogs on load. Space is mapped so I can stop live prior to the load.

Note, the on the current iPhone OS, you have to use WiFi for communications as bluetooth is not supported for apps. So, before you go to a gig, I recommend you create a secure Ad hoc network on your system then connect the iPhone to this network rather than hoping for a WiFi setup at the venue. I've got this all working on Windows 7. iPhone seemed happiest with "WEP Encryption".

I'm really liking using the iPhone as a dedicated device to send keyboard macros to live so I don't have to take my Launchpad and my Remote SL out of default modes to map these functions. Plus, the iPhone is really easy to see in the dark.


Mark Mosher

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Hi, this is Mark Mosher. Welcome to my blog. I’m a synthesist, Composer, Producer, and Visualist living in Boulder CO. I’m also the founder of the Rocky Mountain Synth Meet and Synth Patrol.

I’ve been blogging wince 2005 and this blog is a mix of posts on artistic news as well as synth tech & technique posts under the category Modulate This!

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4 responses to “Using Novation Automap for iPhone/iPod Touch to Wirelessly Send Keystrokes to Ableton Live”

  1. I’ve just had a play with it. Great fun. Automapping of Synplant wasn’t too good though. It only includes 2 faders per page, with the rest taken up with 8 buttons. I think I’d give the direct automapping a miss and map stuff using Instrument or effect racks.
    I’d also like to see layout customization like the Jazz Mutant Lemur for instance. That would be really cool.


  2. Yes, in addition to keystroke emulation, the app can send out pretty much any MIDI note or CC.
    I agree on encryption. I couldn’t get the iPhone to pair with WPA with my first few tries.


  3. That’s a cool idea.
    I assume that when they state : “Please note Automap 3.2 PRO is only compatible with the following Novation products:
    ReMOTE SL, ReMOTE ZeRO SL, ReMOTE SL Compact, etc. etc. ”
    They only mean hardware. I guess that if you can midimap or keymap anything Ableton Live then you can control it with this.
    I recommend WPA encryption as WEP is pretty insecure nowadays. Unless you want some cybergeeks messing with your mix of course :o)


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