If you get the the error message “THIS DEVICE IS NOT AVAILABLE IN THIS VERSION OF LIVE” when you are trying to open a Max for Live device. You most likely don’t have it installed. (In some rare cases you might just need to update Max/Max for Live.)
What is Max for Live?
Max for Live is a second program running in the background when using Ableton Live. You don’t necessarily will notice if MaxForLive is running. It will only open if you start editing and open Max for Live devices.
There are different version of Ableton Live: Ableton Live Lite, Ableton Live Intro, Ableton Live Standard and Ableton Live Suite.
Do I have Max4Live?
If you installed Ableton Live Suite you installed Max for Live automatically. You will find a couple of Max Audio effects, Max Instruments and Max MIDI effects in the browser window.
If you have Ableton Live Standard installed, you would be able to buy a Max for Live license as an add on.
You can’t use 3rd Party M4L plug-ins with Ableton Live Lite and Ableton Live Intro. However you will find some M4L devices included in some ‘lower’ Live versions. They were added by Ableton as they can perform some functions which are not possible natively. (So technically this proves that it would be possible to add M4L to Intro and Standard. We can only hope that Ableton might take a turn here. It would be great to make Max4Live accessible to more people.
Do I need to upgrade if “…device is not available…”?
When seeing the error message “THIS DEVICE IS NOT AVAILABLE IN THIS VERSION OF LIVE” pop-up, you would need to upgrade. To spend your money wise, you could as well get the Ableton Live Suite Trial for free. This way you could check for 3 month, if you really want to invest in the upgrade.
Which version of Ableton Live do I have?
When you start Ableton Live a box is showing up stating which version you have installed. In Ableton Live’s preferences you can select the “License and Maintenance” tab to see which version you have installed.