Page 1 of 2
#1
What is your DAW of choice, simply.
Through college, I ended up using, Logic, Reason and Cubase; three pretty well known DAWs. I'm currently looking into home studio work, so I'm looking at what to get. I know there's obviously other DAWs out there, like Reaper, SawStudio and ProTools, but I'd like to see what you recommend.

Just let me know what you think of what DAWs you're using in terms of how user-friendly it is, is it worth what you paid for it etc. I'd like to see what's out there at my disposal, and hopefully I can get the ball rolling soon!
#3
Well, look who joined UG (I think)... (This is Steve, btw).

You already know I use Logic, but my personal view is that they're all pretty similar these days though some specialise slightly in certain areas.

Ableton Live is probably the best for electronic and sequenced music; Pro Tools is much more traditional and thus excels at recording itself, and editing is probably the slickest of all the DAWs thanks to the multi-tool Pro Tools uses. Logic is, as you're aware, somewhere in between those two.

The others are all varying degrees towards one step of the spectrum or the other.
#4
I use Pro Tools, and I love it.

That being said, I don't really think it's the easiest, most cost-effective DAW for home studio use, especially with the new pay system that Avid is talking about.
#5
I use logic.

Whatever DAW nowadays works, so download the free trial of everything and then get what you like better.

Just don't use pro tools - it sucks software-wise, it uses a not much supported proprietary plugin format, it doesn't have good midi integration so if you wanna make electronic music it's a pita to use, and unless you're used to working with analog consoles you're most likely not gonna find any part of its workflow that doesn't work as well (or better) in whatever other DAW.

Oh, and I don't know if it's the same nowadays, but last pro tools version I tried only supported avid and compatible (old) m-audio interface.
#6
Quote by DisarmGoliath
Well, look who joined UG (I think)... (This is Steve, btw).

I'm well aware who you are! Except saying Steve leaves you as one of three of DG

I'm gearing towards ProTools, as essentially it's industry standard, and as I'm not into macs, and don't own one, Logic is a bit out of the question.

Generally as I've not used ProTools, I'm otherwise expecting some difficulty using it at first, but hey, I like a challenge so I'll see how it goes! That being said I'll assume it's not hard to do some research into learning it so it'll be likely what I end up going for.

I'd like to get the most out of recording, and not be limited by software.
#7
Quote by Spambot_2
I use logic.

Whatever DAW nowadays works, so download the free trial of everything and then get what you like better.

Just don't use pro tools - it sucks software-wise, it uses a not much supported proprietary plugin format, it doesn't have good midi integration so if you wanna make electronic music it's a pita to use, and unless you're used to working with analog consoles you're most likely not gonna find any part of its workflow that doesn't work as well (or better) in whatever other DAW.

Oh, and I don't know if it's the same nowadays, but last pro tools version I tried only supported avid and compatible (old) m-audio interface.


Mind if I ask what version of Pro Tools it was you last used? I don't see why they would still continue not supporting plugins, especially as they're a valuable asset to even the most established recording engineers.

I do have a copy of Reason 6, so MIDI-wise, I'm pretty much sorted, but it's not really cut out to do anything more than electronic music, I've found myself quite limited trying to use it to record and mix, even though I know with a lot of time and effort, that it can be done. But let's be honest, I don't want to spend hours and hours on getting good tones out of a limited 4-band EQ, alongside various other features.

With that being said, I have been looking around and SawStudio seems to be a fairly flexible DAW. I'll give it a go when I can.
#8
Quote by Valdrkyn

I'm gearing towards ProTools, as essentially it's industry standard


This is generally not considered a good reason to use protools. It's only the industry standard because it's utilised business practices that make it incredibly expensive to not use ProTools once you've started.


And I'm pretty sure ProTools still doesn't support VST's natively.
Last edited by ChemicalFire at Nov 5, 2014,
#9
^ much ups for that.
Quote by Valdrkyn
Mind if I ask what version of Pro Tools it was you last used?
I think it was PT10HD Native, and I don't think they included support to the other audio interfaces as of today.

There was a crack for that, for version 10 at least, though I'm not sure there's one for the latest version.
Quote by Valdrkyn
I don't see why they would still continue not supporting plugins, especially as they're a valuable asset to even the most established recording engineers.
They do support them, it's the developers who don't support them much

Though, seriously, most plugins you see are vst and au.
Most developers can't even be bothered to write aax stuff, especially after avid dropped their previous 32bit format.
Quote by Valdrkyn
I do have a copy of Reason 6, so MIDI-wise, I'm pretty much sorted, but it's not really cut out to do anything more than electronic music, I've found myself quite limited trying to use it to record and mix, even though I know with a lot of time and effort, that it can be done. But let's be honest, I don't want to spend hours and hours on getting good tones out of a limited 4-band EQ, alongside various other features.
Pro Tools can't touch reason's midi integration.
Even reason 6's.

Anyway doesn't reason 6 have a modeled 4000G desk?
'cause people were able and to the day still are able to get things sounding veeery good with the help of a no more than 4 bands EQ y' know.

So apart from the workflow, practice mixing.
Quote by Valdrkyn
With that being said, I have been looking around and SawStudio seems to be a fairly flexible DAW. I'll give it a go when I can.
I haven't heard of it before, and judging from that alone I would suggest not to rely on that.

Don't get me wrong, maybe it's the perfect DAW, but it's not like such stuff remains pretty unknown for no reason - see ardour for reference.
#11
Pro Tools HD prior to 11 need to have an Avid interface. However, non-HD versions 9 and above can absolutely be used with just about any interface.

As for the plugins, that is true about the AAX. However, if you get PT 11, it comes with a license for 10, so you can use RTAS as well. They're still a PT only plugin format, but honestly, almost all the plugins I would want are in either RTAS or AAX.

I personally find the workflow for PT extremely intuitive. Any other DAW I've used doesn't really make sense to me.
#12
Quote by Valdrkyn
I'm well aware who you are! Except saying Steve leaves you as one of three of DG

You have the acquired internet knowledge to check my profile though, and to know that the other two Steves are unlikely to moderate on a guitar forum

I'm gearing towards ProTools, as essentially it's industry standard, and as I'm not into macs, and don't own one, Logic is a bit out of the question.

Generally as I've not used ProTools, I'm otherwise expecting some difficulty using it at first, but hey, I like a challenge so I'll see how it goes! That being said I'll assume it's not hard to do some research into learning it so it'll be likely what I end up going for.

I'd like to get the most out of recording, and not be limited by software.

Pro Tools is great if you have the money to sink into it (e.g. if you were avoiding Macs because of the additional costs at first, then Pro Tools would be the same issue) and if you're after something mainly for traditional recording, editing and mixing.

It's not great for trying loads of new freeware or smaller-company plug-ins, and for being able to handle extensive MIDI work etc. It's improving though, as are all the DAWs, with each update.


Basically, the main problems with Pro Tools come down to the cost (for it, and also the plug-ins) and the plug-in formats that it can use (which mean pretty much sticking to commercially-released plug-ins alone).
#13
Ableton Live.

It's the only one I know how to use inside and out. Tried Protools and Cubase but I never bothered to learn them fully. Used Audacity for my first few demos (what a nightmare!)

People usually use it for sequencing / electronic, but it works just fine for any genre
#14
Would highly recommend reaper, sososo easy to use, and yes it does everything the other DAWS do. I am bias, I'll admit it, but the reason I am so bias is because I like reaper so much.
It won't hurt your bank account either only $60 (or free until you pay).
#15
Quote by ChemicalFire
This is generally not considered a good reason to use protools. It's only the industry standard because it's utilised business practices that make it incredibly expensive to not use ProTools once you've started.


And I'm pretty sure ProTools still doesn't support VST's natively.

ProTools was/is the industry standard...but not the PT that comes with an interface. The world-class studio standard is the HD version that requires racks of outboard hardware processing to give it the edge above other software. Unless you're dropping $50k+ then you will not have the same ProTools that the big name studios are using (and that's okay!).

On a PC, you'll want to strongly consider Cubase and Presonus StudioOne. Those are both very open, straightforward, well-supported DAWs. Ableton is great as well, but is NOT straightforward at first, which can really put you off.

I use Ableton, but I know my way around it very well after a few years and two version upgrades. I've spent around $1000 on my DAW and I'm very happy with what I got for my money. I've spent another couple hundred on plugins (waves sales ftw) and I am happy with those tools - I use a balanced mix of Ableton plugs and Waves plugs on every session.


My Ableton workflow:
If you want to do a lot of improvisational songwriting, or have a big digital sketchpad, then Ableton is amazing. I use it for writing - I set up some drum loops (on a big grid of instruments) then layer in some rhythm guitar loops (via amp&mic) followed by lead bits as they come to me. Then I arrange the sections I come up with into a preliminary arrangement. Then I add bass and any other sounds that come to me (via mic or midi) and flesh out an arrangement. Then I push everything off of the grid view into a typical arrangement view and smooth out transitions/fills, and hand it off to the singer to figure out her vocals. We'll then cut and shift sections, lengthening or shortening them as the vocal dictates. After that's all set with a scratch vocal, we make sure we're happy with tempo and then I re-record each part in 1-3 takes for a more dynamic result, and we track a keeper vocal once the lyrics are done. I will also send off the audio with the midi drums split apart to my drummer who will embellish on the drum parts with real-drummer fills and whatnot. Boom - shareable demo song!

That's the flexibility that Ableton offers that you won't get in every DAW (at least the first half of my workflow with the adjustable grids).
#16
I use Reaper in parallel with Reason. Maybe I'm gonna try out something like Logic or Ableton when my computer finally fails and I have to buy another one, but for now the R&R combo works fine.
#17
I own almost every major DAW out there (Pro Tools 10/11, Presonus Studio One 2 Pro, Cubase 6.5, Adobe Audition CS6, Reason 7, Cakewalk Sonar X1, FL Studio, Logic Pro 9/10, Magix Samplitude 9, Harrison Mixbus & Reaper), mostly - I use Reaper for everything, just because it works best for my workflow. I use Logic a lot at work, but I don't currently have a Mac away from the office, otherwise I'd probably be using that.

I've been trying to force myself into Pro Tools for years and have been unsuccessful thus far... it really has a huge learning curve over the other DAWs out there. I've gotten pretty good with it, but really the only reason I own it is the convenience of allowing clients to send me PT sessions, and I can bounce them out of the software myself, rather than them screwing something up in the process

I WILL say that I do use a few of the other software packages for specific things. Audition is unparalleled for getting rid of background noise easily. For audio restoration, that program just kills. I don't do a lot of electronic stuff, so I rarely use Reason - mostly I just rewire it into another DAW if someone sends me a track that utilizes its instruments. Studio One comes with what is, perhaps, the best stock plugin package of any other DAW on the market. Though, a lot of people keep telling me it's super intuitive to use, but I find it harder to get used to than Pro Tools Seriously though, if you don't own any other plugin packages already, S1 is worth it just for all the great plugins it comes with.

Quote by Spambot_2
I think it was PT10HD Native, and I don't think they included support to the other audio interfaces as of today.

The regular version of 9 or higher will work with just about any audio interface out there. They dropped needing to use their own hardware with the release of 9, four years ago. HD Native still requires the Native interface, but is far less expensive than an HDX system, as it puts all the processing on your computer, rather than the physical units.

Quote by Spambot_2
They do support them, it's the developers who don't support them much

Though, seriously, most plugins you see are vst and au.
Most developers can't even be bothered to write aax stuff, especially after avid dropped their previous 32bit format.

Actually, no.

The reason a lot of developers don't support RTAS or AAX is because the source code for these plugin formats aren't open-source, like VST is. The developer has to pay for the rights to make a plugin, which is very expensive, and most smaller developers can't afford it.

Quote by Spambot_2
I haven't heard of it before, and judging from that alone I would suggest not to rely on that.

Don't get me wrong, maybe it's the perfect DAW, but it's not like such stuff remains pretty unknown for no reason - see ardour for reference.


SAW is relatively unknown in the non-professional realm, because it's very expensive. While there's a "basic" version for $300, it doesn't give you a whole lot more flexibility than your "Lite" version of any of the other, cheaper softwares would. Prices go up from there, to $1200 for the "Lite" version and $2500 for the "Standard."

Because of this, the price really isn't attainable to most people, though the workflow on it is great IMO.
#19
I use mainly Studio One, but also have and use bunch of other DAWs, depending on the project and collaborator. Cakewalk, Acid, Cubase, Nuendo, Pro Tools, Tracktion, n-track, Mixcraft, etc. - I'm pretty much okay with using any of these for common tracks, no problem.
I am better at mixing with some of these than others...

OP - I'd suggest you pick what you're familiar with at this point as you don't need to overcomplicate things.
#21
I use Pro Tools, Reaper, and Logic. Personally prefer Pro Tools to all the others.
#22
I've used absolutely everything on the market but my place is running Studio One.

It's got a few niggles (no way of organising plugins...ARRRGGH), but it's stable, slick and has a really nice learning curve.

Second choice would be Reaper for the price, the tweakability and the performance.

Quote by ChemicalFire
This is generally not considered a good reason to use protools. It's only the industry standard because it's utilised business practices that make it incredibly expensive to not use ProTools once you've started.


Nailed it. It's popular because they cornered the market years ago and it's not worth changing for the studios who are on board.

If you're a million-pound studio, Pro Tools makes more sense since they offer a proper integrated hardware/software system. I can't stand working in Pro Tools, awful performance and counterintuitive in a lot of ways, (though I love the little notepads for each track). PLus you're missing out on a whole world of cheap and free VSTs.
#23
Logic!

I started on ableton but that's when I was into making weird ambient music.
#24
Ableton.

It may seem to have a big learning curve when you start it up, because it's so different from the standard DAW layout. Unless you press tab though

Anyway's the clip view is amazing for writing music. Think of it as an looper pedal, but with infinite repeats and infinite time.

The FX parts of things is like making lego. You click and drag an fx and place it into blocks next to each other on the track. The native plug in's layout could be made by a child who's 10 in it's simplicity and monotone graphical look. This for me is a good thing, since you don't get distracted, and the focus is soley on the parameters and thus sound, and they line up nicely in same form factor.

I'm not sure how big this is with other DAWS, but Ableton has so many independent manufactures making controllers for that software it's crazy. Every controller you could dream off, it has probably been made for ableton.

Another big thing is MAX/msp. Max is basically programming language for music, and is used to make your own synthesizers and musical effects, or to gap the bridge between hardware and software.

Not only for Ableton, but certainly the best integrated, as everything you make there can be pretty much dragged to your FX chain.

Speaking purely from power and 'control' you have over the stuff. Pretty much every big DAW can produce any kind of music as is proven in brought out music over the past decade.

It's really personal preference these days to lay out and how many clicks you need for certain actions for optimization of workflow.

Basically the following are good to check out in no significant order: Fruityloops studio, Logic, Cubase, Ableton, Protools, Reaper, Studio one.

With the exception off Studio one, I've used all off the above and I could have pretty much everything I need. One software might has an easier way to get to something, but you could all let them do what you would want.
Last edited by xxdarrenxx at Nov 10, 2014,
#25
Studio One 2, and Ableton to rewire in ableton-y things that i can't do as quickly in Studio One.

Have to use Pro Tools at uni and it's a nightmare
#26
Logic Pro X of course. It does everything I need it to, and so much more. So easy, yet such a quality program. Not an Apple fanboy, but they have done well with this one!
#28
I use whatever I am most comfortable with regarding the job that needs doing. I use FL studio exclusively for creating drum tracks and midi keyboard tracks. I like the simple interface and mixer layout for effects chains. Exporting each track as wav. I generally mix using Studio 1 using R24 as control surface. My guitar goes into what ever daw is open on the pc via my R24 and usually guitar rig or some other amp fakery for the guitar sounds. For wav editing, slicing, cleaning up etc I use cool edit (Remember that? lol). Just because it's fast and easy and what I learnt lots of tricks on many moons ago. I have others but they have their drawbacks, ie Cubase, I have so many plug-ins it takes about 30 minutes to open. Seriously. When it comes to DAWs it's whatever floats your boat. Try em all and see what you like.
My gastronomic rapacity knows no satiety.
#29
Nobody uses Linux?

I use:

- Fedora Linux
- Ardour (DAW)
- Hydrogen (drum machine)
- Jack (sound server)

The Jack sound server is simply amazing, it allows you to synchronise the playback controls for all programs simultaneously. I normally just use two programs (Ardour and Hydrogen) but you can plug in as many as you want, and they will always run in synchronisation.

You can freely route any outputs from one programs to the input of another (and back again, if you wish). Group outputs together, run them through an effect or whatever you can think of.
#32
^ but the server hosting this website runs linux because it's better for that.

On the contrary, linux has a lot of limitations when it comes to working with audio - no drivers for audio interfaces, very little selection of programs, jack and alsa are a pain in the ass to set up, the plugin format is very uncommon...
Name's Luca.

Quote by OliOsbourne
I don't know anything about this topic, but I just clicked on this thread because of your username :O
Quote by Cajundaddy
Clue: amplifiers amplify so don't turn it on if you need quiet.
Quote by chrismendiola
I guess spambots are now capable of reading minds.
#33
My audio interface (M-Audio - Delta 1010) works right out of the box

There is lots of software available, here is a list of software that work with Jack:
http://jackaudio.org/applications/

Jack and ALSA didn't require any setup, it just works.

Plugin format, you could be right there, I read some more complaints about that.

Granted, I am by no means a professional user, I just record tracks without much extra plugins. Some professionals DO use a Linux recording studio: http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/feb04/articles/mirrorimage.htm

Often the opinion of people about Linux is based on outdated information, Linux has come a long, long way...

But to each his own, I am no fanboy, just a happy Linux user.

EDIT: of course the biggest advantage is the fact that all is free, and legal...
Last edited by tofret at Mar 24, 2015,
#34
Quote by tofret
Granted, I am by no means a professional user, I just record tracks without much extra plugins. Some professionals DO use a Linux recording studio: http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/feb04/articles/mirrorimage.htm

Doesn't seem to be any info online about this studio anymore. Its website is no more and pulling up the address doesn't give any hits that really mean much.

Even so, I can understand how a pro studio, with tons of outboard gear, could get by with Linux, as they're not relying on plugins to process things... Where Linux falls short is its plugin support. The modern studio would never be able to get by using Ardour and if you have a budget large enough to purchase a nice Mac or Windows-based computer, I'm not sure why you'd limit yourself with Linux if you're serious about recording.
Quote by Dave_Mc
I've had tube amps for a while now, but never actually had any go down on me
Quote by jj1565
maybe you're not saying the right things? an amp likes to know you care.





www.SanctityStudios.com
#35
Quote by Henrikduende
Cubase.

oh good I thought I was going to be the only one who uses Cubase

I use Cubase 5 right now. It can do everything I need to and the workflow is pretty easy to visualize and use. I plan on upgrading to Cubase 8 sometime this year, but for now, I have absolutely NO issue with Cubase 5 (other than it doesn't support 64bit VST's )
#36
I use Cubase mainly as i have the most time with that, I have Reaper and Protools that I use for some stuff, sometimes i also import from one to another

I started with Cubase DOS version for MIDI, had to launch with a C:/ in DOS, windows '95...lol, It was great though, I think my HD was only about 120meg
Last edited by Tempoe at Mar 27, 2015,
#37
I use Cakewalk Sonar Producer - x3 now. They just came out with a monthly buy in thing so you arent totally comitted... Ive been a happy sonar user for close to a decade... its gotten better and better. I use it professionally.
Page 1 of 2