Two DAWs Ship: SONAR X2, MOTU DP8 – As DP8 Invades Windows, Too

Two DAWs, announced earlier this year, are now shipping this week. One is Cakewalk’s SONAR X2 for Windows, which extends the new user interface overhaul – loved by some, despised by others – unveiled in X1. But PC stalwart Cakewalk has new competition on the Windows platform. MOTU’s DP8, apart from being a fairly significant […]

Reason Opens Its Rack To Developers: Q+A with Propellerhead, What This Means for Plug-ins

Reason’s Rack, a walled garden no more. Hmmm… “reason.” “Logic.” I’m calling my next musical creation “Inanity.” Sound good? Who’s in? Photo (CC-BY) Marco Raaphorst. He’s a fan. Users want more: that much is clear. But for years, Reason has famously (or infamously, depending on your point of view) resisted plug-in formats as a way […]

Renoise 2.8 Gets More Usable, 64-bit; Trackers 4ever

Who says every music production tool has to be either a traditional DAW or Ableton Live? Not Renoise, for one. I’m running out of things to call it. Modernized tracker? Tracker on steroids? Music production tool from an alternate history in which conventional DAWs were ignored and everybody just kept on using trackers? How about […]

Time and Tune, More Fluid: Melodyne Editor 2.0 Brings New Tools, ReWire

The Melodyne editor, which promises to make working with audio as fluid as working with MIDI, has long had some impressive technology under the hood. But it’s as the tool gradually matures in terms of workflow and usability that I think it could win some additional converts. Melodyne 2.0 is a major update to the […]

Reason 6 Combines Record Features, Adds Effects; New Bundles and First Props Hardware Interface

Propellerhead today unveils the new Reason, incorporating Record functionality in both the full-blown and “Essentials” versions, a new audio interface in their first-ever hardware, and a beta that will at last make ReCycle a modern Mac tool. Record added some wonderful stuff to Reason, including a terrific analog-style console, modeled EQ and dynamics, the ability […]

DAW Day: Propellerhead Record is Here, with Lots of Free Training

Record is now shipping, and the beta closed – and now is a perfect time to talk about learning. Okay, let me explain something. Propellerhead doesn’t want Record to be called a “DAW,” for Digital Audio Workstation. I personally overcame my own distaste for the strange acronym today because, well, there’s not another good name […]

Renoise 2.1, Now with Mac-PC ReWire, Plus JACK on Linux, Live Performance Tools

Renoise has already earned a passionate following among lovers of trackers. The once-forgotten alternative to conventional sequencers, these music editors were beloved for their quick workflow and vertical, atomic approach to assembling beats and patterns. But Renoise is increasingly poised to appeal to other kinds of music makers, too, not just tracker purists. 2.1 you […]

Sibelius 6: Notation Software Gets Magnetic Layout, ReWire, More – Details

Sibelius today gets the biggest upgrade I’ve seen from the tool in a long time, with major improvements to the way the notation package lays out musical objects on the score, and ReWire support so you can integrate it with your host of choice. This is an especially meaningful upgrade to me, as I’ve spent […]

Numerology 2.0: Modular Sequencing Environment on the Mac, Now Even Cooler

Sequencing – the collection of techniques that actually assemble events in our music – seems to get far less attention than it deserves. After all, there are fairly accepted ways of synthesizing sound, but as many ways of thinking about musical events as there are ways of thinking about composition. Among the big DAWs, you’ll […]