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Blackstar Live Logic review

A compact MIDI controller for Ableton that's designed especially for guitarists

Blackstar Live Logic
(Image: © Future)

Our Verdict

Compact and super-rugged, the Blackstar Live Logic is a an intuitively designed MIDI controller to help guitar players navigate Ableton or bring any MIDI-enabled device into play.

For

  • Very tough build.
  • Designed for guitarists.
  • Can be used as general-purpose MIDI controller.
  • Ableton-approved and ships with Ableton Live 10 Lite.

Against

  • For guitarists? Nothing.

For a compact MIDI controller, the Blackstar is hard to beat at this price point. It’s a flexible and well-thought out piece of kit that even has decent software – normally where equipment manufacturers trip up. 

It’s built like a tank, and ships with Ableton Live 10 Lite, since it’s an Ableton-approved device.

After some fiddling with the editor, getting it to control Ableton is straightforward. Moreover, for heavy pedal users, the footswitch MIDI controller is a natural fit. 

Perhaps an engineer or producer would find it less intuitive, but for a guitarist it makes sense. Of course, it can be used as a general-purpose controller to manage any MIDI-enabled devices or even amps, live or at home.

Though its capabilities as a live looper controller are touted by Blackstar, it’s not an area we can comment on. Ableton tends to fill the DAW niche for us rather than as a live scratch-pad. Once we’ve got a track down, we bounce out a backing track version as a WAV rather than leaving things too much to chance.

Blackstar Live Logic

(Image credit: Blackstar Amplification)

One of the Live Logic’s less obvious features is the ability to accept two expression pedal inputs. This allows for continuous control over midi parameters. It requires a little bit of setting up to get the real value from, but having real-time control over a VST parameter at your feet is definitely underrated. 

All in all, there are no downsides other than the number of footswitches, should you need more. It’s affordable, robust and – for something this powerful – surprisingly straightforward.

Specs

  • PRICE: $179 / £129
  • POWER: 9VDC
  • SWITCHES: 6, assignable to momentary or latching
  • INPUTS: Midi in/out,
  • EXPRESSION: 1/2, Mode, USB
  • CONTACT: Blackstar