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#1
I have Audacity and am pretty decent at using it. I have Cakewalk Sonar 6 LE but I don't know how to do anything other htan click record on it. The tutorial is absolute garbage and I don't know if I'll ever learn it. Also, LE stands for Lite Edition, not Limited, so it barely comes with half the things Cakewalk usually comes with.

I suppose my question is should I stick with the DAW's I have or look for another? I'm getting an interface soon and will be getting monitors shortly after so my budget is very very tight on a DAW. Preferably free.

Also, what does DAW stand for?
#2
REAPER, it's pretty easy to learn/use, most people here use it (so we can help you), it's about as cheap as you're going to get for a real DAW ($60 from memory).
If you really need free then REAPER's trial doesn't expire, or you could use Krystal Audio Engine which is actually free.

DAW is an acronym for Digital Audio Workstation.
#3
Reaper.
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#5
+1 for logic. Its never failed me and I don't think it ever will.
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#6
Quote by GirlGerms
Logic if you have a Mac. 100% percent Logic. If not, then Protools.

If he has a spare £100-£400 floating around....
Reaper
Or
Kristal
#7
Quote by GirlGerms
Logic if you have a Mac. 100% percent Logic. If not, then Protools.


I seriously doubt he has or wants to spend $700 for Protools or even $300 for Logic.

REAPER is fine. I've heard great things about FL Studio too - I'd worry more about what type of Audio Interface and mics you are going to use than what DAW you are recording with.
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#8
Quote by GirlGerms
Logic if you have a Mac. 100% percent Logic. If not, then Protools.

lol Logic is really not that good.

Anyways, if it's simplicity you want, just get the cheapest version of Pro Tools 10. Nothing is easier than PT for handling audio.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#9
Quote by Xiaoxi
lol Logic is really not that good.

Anyways, if it's simplicity you want, just get the cheapest version of Pro Tools 10. Nothing is easier than PT for handling audio.

There really isn't a "cheap" version of PT though. They kinda got rid of anything between SE and full-on PT10.
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Quote by Anonden
You CAN play anything with anything....but some guitars sound right for some things, and not for others. Single coils sound retarded for metal, though those who are apeshit about harpsichord probably beg to differ.
#11
Quote by Xiaoxi
Anyways, if it's simplicity you want, just get the cheapest version of Pro Tools 10. Nothing is easier than PT for handling audio.


Problem is, for a beginner, Pro Tools is a lot to invest in. Unless you want to buy one of the shitty M-Audio interfaces or an Mbox, you're looking at $600 just for the software alone. If you want Amp Sims outside of the 2 that come with Eleven Free (which you can do a lot with but not everything), you've gotta buy them since there is no native VST support.

There are a lot of things that make Pro Tools a great DAW, its just not necessarily the best for a beginner.
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#12
Quote by Xiaoxi
Nothing is easier than PT for handling audio.


I have to disagree with this statement and give another +1 for Logic.
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#13
Quote by lockwolf
Problem is, for a beginner, Pro Tools is a lot to invest in. Unless you want to buy one of the shitty M-Audio interfaces or an Mbox, you're looking at $600 just for the software alone. If you want Amp Sims outside of the 2 that come with Eleven Free (which you can do a lot with but not everything), you've gotta buy them since there is no native VST support.

There are a lot of things that make Pro Tools a great DAW, its just not necessarily the best for a beginner.

Pro Tools Express, according to product description, includes the basic virtual instruments and DSPs needed to get started. The mbox mini isn't great but it's not especially horrendous either. This is all for under $300. Sounds ok to me.

And still nothing beats it in terms of "first interface", and finding your way around how to use the basics of a DAW.

and lol, Logic is NOT a good beginner DAW. Most people I know who use Logic without formal training have no idea what they're doing, let alone the true basic principles behind DAWs.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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Last edited by Xiaoxi at Jan 19, 2013,
#14
I think protools should be your second DAW not your first ( there is a reason it's the standard )

BUT you should learn to use a DAW, how you want to use it, what are the options and workflow, and IF you want to spend the money Then you upgrade to Protools.

I jumped from Reaper to Reason to Sonar to Protools I would have been better to go from Reason to Protools and skip the Sonar path, once in Protools everything is there ( you know everythign is there because everyone else is doing what you do PLUS far more )
you just need to learn the workflow and your home.

starting with Reaper is a great place to begin the recording.
#15
Quote by Xiaoxi
Pro Tools Express, according to product description, includes the basic virtual instruments and DSPs needed to get started. The mbox mini isn't great but it's not especially horrendous either. This is all for under $300. Sounds ok to me.

And still nothing beats it in terms of "first interface", and finding your way around how to use the basics of a DAW.

and lol, Logic is NOT a good beginner DAW. Most people I know who use Logic without formal training have no idea what they're doing, let alone the true basic principles behind DAWs.


Pro Tools Express is terrible. Buggy as hell and limited to 8 tracks per session. Yes, 8. Maybe for starting out but you aren't going far.

Besides, for $260, you've got a Scarlett and Reaper and you've got a much more functional DAW
Derpy Derp Derp Herp Derp
#16
LOL, I love when people refer to ProTools as the standard, what your failing to understand is that the "standard" ProTools that you speak of runs around $20,000. I've been in some pro studios and they're using HD systems, not M-audio or these bundled up software packages that are crazy expensive for what you get and not anything like the real deal. Most all DAW's are capable of almost anything.
The thing to really look for is work flow, what's going to work best for your needs whether audio or midi. Reaper, ProTools, Sonar, Cubase, Logic, and Ableton are all great DAWs and all have great features. But really if Audio is your thing Reaper is an amazing choice because it has a great work flow, for me anyways. Mic'ing and recording techniques are way more important than which DAW you have. A seasoned recording engineer can make an amazing recording with minimal equipment, and someone who hasn't a clue about mic placement will still fail even with Neumanns and a HD system.
I have Sonar X2a and love it, but have been using Reaper lately and have to say it's ever bit as capable as any other DAW, still lacks some in the midi world, but is very lightweight and adjusting to the workflow was very easy, plus they are always working on it and seem to listen to their users more than I've ever seen any where else.
Seriously though, there are so many FREE or cheap effects out there now that can compete with higher end ones, there is no reason to not atleast give Reaper a shot.
#17
Quote by Apc3
LOL, I love when people refer to ProTools as the standard, what your failing to understand is that the "standard" ProTools that you speak of runs around $20,000. I've been in some pro studios and they're using HD systems, not M-audio or these bundled up software packages that are crazy expensive for what you get and not anything like the real deal. Most all DAW's are capable of almost anything.
The thing to really look for is work flow,


it is the standard for the reason YOU Posted, you learn the workflow of a PC version and can move to a HD version without any real learning curve ( just learn the advanages of the Extra power you get with HD ) learning Sonar or what ever if you move to Prootool HD you have a learning curve in front of you to get Productive.


I can not really see a point in compairing Sonar to Logic to FL to Protools or what ever DAW you can think of ,. feature wise.

if there is a DAW "standard" Protools would have to be in the short list

learning the standard "workflow" in Protools can not be a bad thing ?

calling Protools the standard DAW of Professionals can not be a bad thing can it ?
specially since everyone does know there is alteratives to protools
#18
Quote by Apc3
LOL, I love when people refer to ProTools as the standard, what your failing to understand is that the "standard" ProTools that you speak of runs around $20,000. I've been in some pro studios and they're using HD systems, not M-audio or these bundled up software packages that are crazy expensive for what you get and not anything like the real deal. Most all DAW's are capable of almost anything.
The thing to really look for is work flow, what's going to work best for your needs whether audio or midi. Reaper, ProTools, Sonar, Cubase, Logic, and Ableton are all great DAWs and all have great features. But really if Audio is your thing Reaper is an amazing choice because it has a great work flow, for me anyways. Mic'ing and recording techniques are way more important than which DAW you have. A seasoned recording engineer can make an amazing recording with minimal equipment, and someone who hasn't a clue about mic placement will still fail even with Neumanns and a HD system.
I have Sonar X2a and love it, but have been using Reaper lately and have to say it's ever bit as capable as any other DAW, still lacks some in the midi world, but is very lightweight and adjusting to the workflow was very easy, plus they are always working on it and seem to listen to their users more than I've ever seen any where else.
Seriously though, there are so many FREE or cheap effects out there now that can compete with higher end ones, there is no reason to not atleast give Reaper a shot.


Lol, do you know that Protools for home set-up is what 300-400 pounds? Not that much really!
#19
I still can't believe you guys a recommending a £400 DAW to a complete beginner...


What the hell is you guys problem? And I'm yet to hear any reasons for TS to use it apart from "it's the standard" and "I like it".
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#20
Quote by ChemicalFire
I still can't believe you guys a recommending a £400 DAW to a complete beginner...


What the hell is you guys problem? And I'm yet to hear any reasons for TS to use it apart from "it's the standard" and "I like it".

..?? No what i read is nearly everyone has said go for reaper first even the protool users ???
Last edited by T4D at Jan 19, 2013,
#21
Quote by T4D
..?? No what i read is everyone has said go for reaper first even the protool users ???


Not everyone.
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#22
Quote by GirlGerms
Lol, do you know that Protools for home set-up is what 300-400 pounds? Not that much really!


You do realize the average user won't spend $60 on a license for Reaper? Seriously, if you think $600 USD is cheap for someone who is just starting out, has no idea what they're doing and probably won't stick with it, then maybe you're that rich asshole nobody likes.
Derpy Derp Derp Herp Derp
#23
I'm gonna go with Reaper I believe. Is there any sort of tutorial for Reaper? When it comes to mixing, the extent of my knowledge is clicking "export to wav/mp3" on Audacity.
#24
Quote by Billwallace89
I'm gonna go with Reaper I believe. Is there any sort of tutorial for Reaper? When it comes to mixing, the extent of my knowledge is clicking "export to wav/mp3" on Audacity.


REAPER as a DAW is extremely well supported. Check their site, they do tutorials better than probably any other DAW company. The beauty of it being a smaller development house.
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#25
Quote by lockwolf
Pro Tools Express is terrible. Buggy as hell and limited to 8 tracks per session. Yes, 8. Maybe for starting out but you aren't going far.

Besides, for $260, you've got a Scarlett and Reaper and you've got a much more functional DAW

Product description says 16 audio tracks, just limited to 8 simultaneous in/outs, which beginners really wouldn't hit and this doesn't sound like it includes internal busses. Doing it right means just one output, and they wouldn't really be tracking 8 simultaneous inputs. Yeah, it's still limited, but honestly beginners don't need much more than that. Plus they get a discounted upgrade price when they're ready for the full Pro Tools.

Aren't you the one who subscribe to recordingrevolution.com? Dude espouses this all the time. If you can't get good with the basics, you won't get good with the deluxe stuff either. Plus, that's another point. There are so many great, FREE, video resources online for working with Pro Tools.

As someone who uses Digital Performer the most, I think I can be objective in saying that Pro Tools has a much more straightforward and learning friendly layout than even Reaper.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#26
I've grown to trust Chatterbox, Lockwolf, and Chemicalfires' opinions on these forums so the argument ovER the DAW is just relative now. I'm going with Reaper. If they suggest it as a good beginner's software then I'll go with it. And I've checked Reaper's site And the support does seem unsurpassed.
My next question may end some of the argument. Lockwolf: I do plan on 'sticking with it'. I've been doing my own recordings for a long time I just never got into the advanced methods of recording. My SoundCloud is Www.soundcloud.com/old-too-young-us It may be an aquired taste of music (kind of a bluegrass punk with a twist of folk) if you'd like to see what I've done with Audacity. (some of those recordings were done with my phone as well) .
So my argument ending question is, after I pick up my 2i4, and Reaper. Would you guys suggest upgrading to ProTools at some point?
And my other question is after I get Reaper it may put off my purchase of monitors for awhile. Is Reaper worth that? I have a devent set of Koss Pro/4AA studio headphones for the time being. I'm not 100% on wanting monitors but like I said, I've grown to trust your inputs.

I accidentally clicked post before I was done so if someone could delete that first post please...
Last edited by Billwallace89 at Jan 19, 2013,
#27
Quote by Billwallace89
So my argument ending question is, after I pick up my 2i4, and Reaper. Would you guys suggest upgrading to ProTools at some point?

If you think you need too. If you're using REAPER, and you don't find anything there that's a limitation then there's no good reason to change IMO. If however you use REAPER and get really into it, then start finding things that REAPER just can't do but Pro Tools can then obviously you will want to consider getting it. In any case, by the time that you may want to switch to Pro Tools you will be experienced enough to make that decision for yourself.

Quote by Billwallace89
And my other question is after I get Reaper it may put off my purchase of monitors for awhile. Is Reaper worth that? I have a devent set of Koss Pro/4AA studio headphones for the time being. I'm not 100% on wanting monitors but like I said, I've grown to trust your inputs.


Well I actually don't own monitors, but my mate who I learned most of my stuff off has a pair (dunno what) and I could really hear things in his mixes that I didn't hear when I was giving him crit on them from home.
That said, I'd take headphones and REAPER over monitors and Audacity any day, with some good referencing on multiple systems (mixing headphones, cheap earbuds, car speakers, etc.) you can get by quite well without monitors.

Quote by Billwallace89
I accidentally clicked post before I was done so if someone could delete that first post please...

You should be able to delete it yourself, just click the edit button then up the top there should be an option to delete it
Last edited by chatterbox272 at Jan 19, 2013,
#28
Quote by Xiaoxi
Product description says 16 audio tracks, just limited to 8 simultaneous in/outs, which beginners really wouldn't hit and this doesn't sound like it includes internal busses. Doing it right means just one output, and they wouldn't really be tracking 8 simultaneous inputs. Yeah, it's still limited, but honestly beginners don't need much more than that. Plus they get a discounted upgrade price when they're ready for the full Pro Tools.


Ahh, got them reversed. Still doesn't leave much room to grow. I know discounted upgrades and that are nice but like I said, a fully functional copy of Reaper & a Scarlett 2i4 is $260 and you're set for life. Also, PT Express or SE or whatever they call it is very buggy to the point that its unstable, from what I've read on other boards. True, a new user isn't going to need more than 16 tracks but if your needs expand beyond that, you're gonna have to shell out a few hundred bucks to expand versus Reaper where you're set for life. I'd rather have and not use than to get by then shell out a few hundred more bucks.

As many resources for Pro Tools you can find, you can find just as much for Reaper. Reaper has always been the underdog Home Studio DAW IMO and there are just tons of free resources for it. Also, stuff like The Recording Revolution, even though he mixes in PT, you can do a good majority of that in Reaper as well since most is just basic EQing, Compressing & such. He does a few PT specific things but its mostly universal.
Derpy Derp Derp Herp Derp
#29
Quote by Billwallace89
I've grown to trust Chatterbox, Lockwolf, and Chemicalfires' opinions on these forums so the argument ovER the DAW is just relative now. I'm going with Reaper. If they suggest it as a good beginner's software then I'll go with it. And I've checked Reaper's site And the support does seem unsurpassed.
My next question may end some of the argument. Lockwolf: I do plan on 'sticking with it'. I've been doing my own recordings for a long time I just never got into the advanced methods of recording. My SoundCloud is Www.soundcloud.com/old-too-young-us.

Sensible choice, REAPER is a great bit of software. If you've got a larger monitor (at last 1080p), check out the Imperial theme - it completely transforms the look and makes it really nice to use.

Those latest recordings on your soundcloud sound really solid - a bit bright and thin but highly listenable. If you start using a little bit of ambience to fill out the sound, you'll have some very nice demos.


As well as Reaper, have a little play with Studio One Free.
It's way too crippled to use as a main DAW, but I think Studio One has the easiest and most intuitive workflow of any recording software, and is a lot less scary to newcomers.

Try it now as an intermediate step up between Audacity and Reaper; you use it for a week or two to get a grip of the basic DAW mechanics and then when you move over to Reaper, the mass of effects and buttons won't seem so overwheming. Reaper is awesome, but it does have a TON of options, context menus and UI elements which are very daunting to a newcomer.
#30
Logic for Mac. Reaper for PC.

Each DAW has it's advantages and disadvantages. I've tried most of them and come to the conclusion these two have the best cost to usability ratio.
Last edited by Afroboy267 at Jan 20, 2013,
#31
Quote by Afroboy267
Logic for Mac. Reaper for PC.

Each DAW has it's advantages and disadvantages. I've tried most of them and come to the conclusion these two have the best cost to usability ratio.



But u can get reaper for the mac ?
#32
Quote by T4D
But u can get reaper for the mac ?

True, I've tried both on Mac and I'd defiantly take Logic over it anyday. Reaper is bloody good but I've always preferred Logic personally.
#33
I have Logic 9 but actually use Reaper more too. I just ordered an Eleven Rack from B&H Photo so I'm going to be running Pro Tools 10 shortly.
Now running an Eleven Rack with Pro Tools 10.3.3 - it's amazing and I'm having ball with it - worth every penny. PT 10 is tops IMO and the Eleven Rack is a work of art!
#35
Quote by Billwallace89
So Studio One Free or Krystal?

Haven't had much experience with either (I used to use REAPERs unlimited trial until I was capable of paying) but they're both pretty limited. Kristal is limited to 16 tracks, 2 vsts per track and 3 on the master. I don't know what the limitations are on Studio One Free but I imagine there's a fair few of those too (I'm sure Kyle can enlighten us to those)
If I had to pick one blindly I'd probably trust Kyle and go Studio One. Which oddly enough is actually developed (partially) by KristalLabs (who make Kristal) so I would guess that all the good things about Kristal are in Studio One.
#36
Quote by chatterbox272
I don't know what the limitations are on Studio One Free but I imagine there's a fair few of those too (I'm sure Kyle can enlighten us to those)


Pretty severe:

- No third party plugins
- Limited to 2 simultaneous inputs
- No track folders
- No transient/groove detection

The effects that come with it are nice though, you could put together an ok mix with them. That said, even their budget priced 'Studio One Artist' doesn't support VSTs (which is a complete and utter dick move for any paid/bundled software).

I'd download the Studio One, use it in Professional demo mode for 30 days, and get the hang of general workflow in a really nice, streamlined environment. Once the trial runs out, move over to REAPER and you should find it quite nice to work with (if a little more complex at times).
#37
StudioOne is awesome... but I have the producer package.

Really I wouldn't use the free version as a serious mixing tool, nice to demo though.

Really at this early stage I still can't recomend REAPER enough.
All I want is for everyone to go to hell...
...It's the last place I was seen before I lost myself



Quote by DisarmGoliath
You can be the deputy llamma of the recordings forum!
#39
Quote by ChemicalFire
StudioOne is awesome... but I have the producer package.

Really I wouldn't use the free version as a serious mixing tool, nice to demo though.

Really at this early stage I still can't recomend REAPER enough.

Agreed. I think S1 Producer is the best general-purpose DAW out there right now. Fantastic workflow, extremely stable, integrated mastering, and comes with excellent bundled plugins.

The only thing that really properly annoys me about it is the total lack of plugin organisation (Sonar absolutely nailed that).
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