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Recommended DAW?

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#1 CRFaithMusic   Members   


Posted 11 June 2012 - 01:52 AM

Hey guys,

Lately I've been using a rather cheap DAW but I need a new one...
What do you recommend?

Caleb Faith

#2 samoth   Members   


Posted 11 June 2012 - 02:48 AM


Takes an amazing amount of time to start up (nearly half a minute, depending on what you've plugged in), but it's the first one I've seen that
a) doesn't cost anything (if you can do without some plugins and without 64 bit support)
b) doesn't do dongle crap and doesn't use license enforcement components that prevent you from using software that you own entirely legitimately (hello Steinberg, yes I'm talking to you, guys)
c) actually works, and works well
d) works without requiring you 2 weeks of reading the manual
e) does not sound like total shit without spending a few hundred (despite being "free") on instruments first

#3 Madhed   Members   


Posted 11 June 2012 - 04:26 AM


very cheap, very good. Does everything you'll ever want to do.

#4 MartinH.   Members   


Posted 11 June 2012 - 09:57 AM

I also highly recommend reaper, never looked back and not going to switch ever again. Also most friendly, fast and helpful support I have EVER seen.

#5 CBledsoejr   Members   


Posted 11 June 2012 - 11:49 AM

I know a lot of people that use Reaper too, I personally could never get into it. Use whatever works best for you. I can't emphasize this enough... People are too oriented about the tools and not the creativity. In the end, no one cares what you use, as long as you can get your work done. I've used, Ableton, Reaper, Cubase SX/4/5, Logic, Pro Tools, Reason (I haven't tried Studio One)... There's plenty more out there, Sony?

Personally I use Logic for composing music, and Pro Tools for audio editing. Every DAW has their weak spot.

#6 achild   Members   


Posted 11 June 2012 - 12:21 PM

Every DAW has their weak spot.

OP - What will you primarily be doing? MIDI composition? Multitrack audio recording? Dialogue editing? Something else?
And what's your budget?

#7 nsmadsen   Moderators   


Posted 11 June 2012 - 01:19 PM

Take a look at your budget as well as your hardware and goals for this DAW. Then select 3-4 possible candidates and give their demo versions a test drive. From there pick the one that connects with you the best. Asking which one is best is really a subjective question as so many DAWs offer the same core features and tools. Don't be fooled by the claims that DAW X is truly the best - it's much more about what works for you.

Edit: One caveat - if you're wanting to track bands and work in studios there are several DAWs that are more "go to" solutions than other DAWs. The two that come to mind are Pro Tools and Nuendo. But even with studios it can (and does) vary some.

Edited by nsmadsen, 11 June 2012 - 01:21 PM.

Nathan Madsen
Nate (AT) MadsenStudios (DOT) Com
Composer-Sound Designer
Madsen Studios

Cedar Falls, IA

#8 MartinH.   Members   


Posted 13 June 2012 - 03:20 AM

There definitely is a point to the "what works for you" posts. I make music primarily for myself and don't share DAW projects with other professionals. If I did that reaper maybe would not be as suited for the task as maybe cubase or the other more common DAWs. I tried using cubase a looong time ago and didn't like it, I used fruity loops for a while and didn't like that one much either. I bought cakewalk music creator 5 about 3 years ago and I liked some aspects of it a lot, but I didn't realize that I had bought a very crippled tool that did not support more than 8 VST instruments at a time. I can not described how ripped of I felt after I found that out because nowhere in any description anywhere was that mentioned and the maybe common knowledge that music creator is a crippled Sonar or something like that wasn't clear to me. Also it was buggy as hell and crashed more often than most software I ever used.
Reaper was like the light at the end of darkness to me because I finally had a programm that did the things I liked in music creators midi clip handling opposed to how fruity loops did it when I used it, it's more stable than any other audio software I've used (admittatedly I did not try that many different DAWs), it had a lot of customizability (it has so many options that it even provides a search function solely for the preferences dialog! an act of genius in my opinion, never saw anything like that) and most importantly I did not feel ripped of by them! The licenses they offer are priced very reasonable, they give you free updates for a really long time, they even allow you to install the program portably. So there is zero DRM bullshit and I can reformat my windows as often as I like without having to worry about any config files, shared files etc. that reaper might have saved to the system drive because it just does not do that if you tell it not to. Reaper is probably the only piece of software that I know that I only have positve feelings for. They update it so often and it has happend several times that features that I thought would be nice were implemented shortly after. It's like they are reading my mind. And from what I can tell they really listen to what the users say on their forums. Did I mention that they don't spend money on marketing?
I quote from their site:

We don't spend money and effort on marketing, complicated piracy protection, or other things that do not directly improve REAPER and the user experience.

We think the good will generated by playing fair and being responsive to users is more valuable to our business than short-term profits.

This kind of attitude is very rare and I like it a lot, that's one reason why I like to recommend reaper. The other reason is that I would have loved to know this DAW sooner because it would have saved me the struggle with DAWs that were not my cup of tea and since reaper does not have any marketing it is kind of hard to even know of its existence.

p.s.: If you think my pro reaper posts are sketchy because I just registered here and these are my first two post, just ignore me for now and check back in a few months. I plan on getting more active here. Just saying because I fucking hate that guerillia marketing myself...

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