Launchpad Pro vs Push 2 (Helping You Make The Right Choice)

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  • Is the Ableton Push 2 better than the LaunchpadPro MK3?
  • Can you use the Ableton Push 2 outside of Ableton?
  • Find out why Ableton Push is more expensive than Launchpad Pro
  • Also, check out our post on the weirdest MIDI controllers ever made

Many producers reach a crossroads when deciding between the Launchpad Pro Mk3 and Ableton Push 2. These devices are exceptionally designed MIDI controllers that offer similar functionality and performance options. 

Choosing between the Push and Launchpad Pro is not a simple decision, and we’ve compiled this comparison to help you narrow it down.

We’ve provided a brief look over each controller’s primary specs and functions, as well as some pros and cons that come with purchasing either unit. 

Launchpad Pro MK3 vs Push 2: Which Is Best?

Both the Launchpad Pro and Ableton Push 2 are reliable controllers and are worth their respective asking prices (although nobody will complain if the Push 2 gets a price drop).

With that in mind, here are some quick deciding factors for each controller:

Launchpad Pro MK3 vs Push 2: A Brief Comparison

We’ve put together the table below to show you the basic specifications of both the Novation launchpad Pro MK3 and the Ableton Push 2, just to see how they compare right out of the box. 

Novation Launchpad Pro MK3

Ableton Push 2



$799 – 1398


10.5 x 10.5 x 0.7 inches

14.88. x 11.96 x 1.02 inches


4 lbs

6 lbs



USB 5V, 12 V DC





USB, Midi In, Midi Out

USB, MIDI In , MIDi Out, 2 x Pedal Inputs

RGB Backlighting



Novation Launchpad Pro MK3

Key Features:

  • Size: 10.5 x 10.5 x 0.7 inches
  • Weight: 4 lb
  • Power: USB – 5V
  • I/O: USB, Midi In, Midi Out,

Features & Review

The Launchpad Pro MK3 is only the second generation in its series but has a few notable design and functionality improvements from the original Launchpad.

At first sight, the LaunchPad Pro 2 is noticeably smaller and more robust than its predecessor, with an overall sleeker look and feel.  

The user interface of the Launchpad Pro centers around its 8×8 grid pad, which can be used in a handful of ways to create and compile musical ideas and performances.

The updated pads on the Pro 2 are velocity-sensitive, which is probably one of the most important upgrades from the original model. 

Originally, the Launchpad was designed to navigate clips and scenes within Ableton’s Session mode. However, the MK3 allows for much more expansive usage, some of which could have easily been modeled off the Push 2.

What sets the Launchpad Pro MK3 apart from the Push 2 is that its interface can be adapted to other DAWS like Logic or Fruity Loops, whereas the Push is exclusive to Ableton.

The updated grid on the Novation Launchpad Pro 2 now not only controls scenes and clips in Live but can also be used as a step sequencer for live beat-making and performance.

The top half of the grid acts as a 32-step sequencer in this mode, with the bottom half acting as a trigger pad for drum racks, scales, chords, and other samples. 

Novation has created a custom trigger mode, and you can use this mode to MIDI map the controller pads and macros to various parameters in your DAW.

In addition to sequencing, the Launchpad Pro allows users quick access to mixing controls. In this mode, the grid pad converts to a set of virtual faders that adjust basic mixing controls like volume, pans, and sends. 

The Launchpad’s ergonomic user interface lets users cover a broad spectrum of performance options, but without an onboard display, the workflow can become a bit stunted or clumsy for some. 


  • The Launchpad Pro works with a wide variety of DAWS, including Ableton, Logic, and Pro Tools.
  • Simple, user-friendly interface that even beginner producers should find easy to learn. 
  • No need for an external power source while using. 
  • The Launchpad Pro is a highly reliable option for anyone with budget constraints. 


  • The Launchpad Pro MK3 can be limiting for more advanced producers and beatmakers.
  • Inconsistent RGB lighting while using drum pads and some other functions. 

Ableton Push 2

Key Features:

  • Size: 14.88. x 11.96 x 1.02 inches
  • Weight: 6 lb
  • Power: USB – 5V, 12v DC adapter
  • I/O: USB, MIDI In , MIDI Out, 2 x Pedal Inputs

Features & Review

As far as controllers go in the modern era, there aren’t many that offer the total functionality that the Ableton Push 2 does.

With this in mind, the device will only work best for certain producers. The ones that do fit with the Push, though, will revel in its benefits. The Push 2 is punted as a MIDI controller, but it does quite a bit more than this. 

Much like the Novation MK3, the Push 2’s primary function centers around the 64-pad grid. The grid functions as a step sequencer, splitting the top half for sequencing duties and the bottom half for live sample triggering.

However, Push 2 has notably more reactive buttons that click on impact and provide LED lighting for visual feedback. 

Added to the grid pad are macro knobs that can either be mapped to devices within Ableton or custom encoded to create your own performance parameters within the Push interface.

There is also a touch slider to the left of the controller pad that can be used for quick mix controls such as volume, pan, and send effects. 

The Push 2’s defining feature is the Push browser, which allows users to search through and utilize various libraries, including samples, devices, and VST/AU plugins, without using a screen. 

The Push 2 also boasts an incredibly immersive RGB display to help users navigate all the browser options and other functions. The attention to detail with the Push 2 is stunning and makes it appealing to perform with the aid of another screen.

For all its bells and whistles, some producers have noted that the user interface of the Ableton Push 2 is not without limitations.

For instance, certain hiccups come with setting up drum rack chains, and library tags in the browser only display up to 16 characters (not ideal for specific folders or files with long names). 

Some tend to find the layout of the interface overly complex for their needs, and it’s these producers that should generally opt for the Launchpad as an alternative


  • Incredible functionality, with minimal to zero latency on most workstations. 
  • Fast, reactive graphic displays make it easier and fun to navigate the functions. 
  • The display makes it possible to perform without relying on a laptop for visual feedback. 
  • Ableton encoders allow programmers to modify and customize their controllers. 


  • Works exclusively with Ableton.
  • The user interface can be overly complex or too advanced for beginner producers.
  • Lighting drops out when you remove the 12v power adapter. 

Final Thoughts

Choosing between the Ableton Push 2 and the Novation Launchpad Pro 2 is a tough choice. Both units are worth their asking price, and each offer distinct benefits that set them apart from the other. 

Anyone looking for a simple and user-friendly live-performance controller should opt for the Novation Launchpad Pro MK3.

The Launchpad Pro is also the automatic choice between these controllers for anyone that wants to use a DAW outside of Ableton. This controller is also ideal for anyone shopping on a budget. 

However, if you’re an Ableton exclusive producer looking for the best possible performance sidekick for this DAW, the Push 2 is an easy choice.

The controller offers near-unparalleled workflow and functionality alongside Ableton and is a wonderful long-term investment for producers of various levels. 


Which Is Better: The Launchpad Pro Or The Launchkey?

The Launchpad Pro is a better controller for live performance, scene launching, and quick beat building. However, the Launchkey could benefit producers who need a controller primarily for composing and arranging. 

Is The Novation Launchpad Good For Beginners?

Yes. The Launchpad Pro has a simple workflow that is simple enough for beginner producers to learn. Setup and installation for the Launchpad Pro is seamless with most DAWS, which is a huge additional benefit for beginners. 

Can You Make Beats With A Launchpad?

Yes. The Launchpad Pro acts as a MIDI controller but also comes with a step sequencer to allow producers to play, record, and compile beats on-the-fly. 

Before you go, check out our guide to the 7 Best MIDI Keyboards (For Beginners)!