Comparing DAWs: Current Score!

Well, with the release of DP 4.6, it’s time to check in with how our DAWs are doing. These insanely-cool pitch features certainly mean it’s still in the ring. First, see my previous reviews: Digital Performer 4.5 (review for Keyboard) Giant Cubase 3 vs. DP 4.5 vs. Logic 7 Blowout (review for Macworld) Live 4 (review for Macworld) What the upgrades did: Logic 7.1 addressed my complaints about Logic 7 (latency compensation, the screwy UltraBeats presets, and easy drag-and-drop reordering of inserts). DP 4.6 added cool stuff I hadn’t even asked for, though it misses my one major complaint, which …

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Cubase News: Forum Users Locked Out Without Key; Tiger Update

It’s two, two, two Cubase stories in one. Here goes: Cubase.net forum will require USB key number: Don’t like entering serial numbers and the like when you’re installing software or talking to tech support? Now you may need them just to post to a forum. The revised forum policy on Cubase.net requires users to add their USB key number (the dongle’s identifier) to a hidden field in their user profile. Refuse to comply, and you won’t be able to post Cubase SX-related technical questions. Users of Cubase software without a key, like Cubase LE, can continue to post normally, and …

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Macworld: Cubase vs. Logic vs. DP

There's nothing quite like a 3-way. I reviewed Steinberg Cubase SX 3.01, Apple Logic Pro 7.01, and MOTU Digital Performer 4.52 for Macworld.com; read the complete review and conclusions. Of course, a really fair comparison of all-purpose DAW software would be more like Cubase vs. Logic vs. DP vs. Cakewalk SONAR vs. Ableton Live vs. Mackie Tracktion vs. Digidesign Pro Tools LE vs. Steinberg Nuendo vs. Pro Tools TDM vs. . . . but any reviewer's head would immediately explode if they had to do that. Even with just three products, the complexity and nuance of each has to wrangle …

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Avid Acquires Pinnacle (but not Steinberg)

Okay, this is just getting ridiculous. Avid announced today that it will acquire Pinnacle, one of Avid's few remaining competitors in media production technology. At the ultra-high-end broadcast level, Avid already nearly owns the market, and Pinnacle will complete that integration. Meanwhile, you can expect Avid to make a big play for the consumer market with Pinnacle's consumer-level offerings. Add this to Avid / Digidesign's purchase of M-Audio last year. It's pretty much Avid vs. Sony vs. Apple at this point in the video market. No tears shed here, because Sony's Vegas and Apple's iMovie and Final Cut are in …

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Yamaha Acquires Steinberg (Analysis)

Musical instrument giant Yamaha will acquire 100% of Steinberg GmbH, including Steinberg USA, in a closed competitive bidding deal announced yesterday. Steinberg is developer of software products like Cubase and Nuendo. The purchase isn't a surprise: Steinberg and Yamaha collaborated on integrating Yamaha gear with Steinberg software via Studio Connections, integration that's likely to deepen under this deal, and many observers expected Pinnacle to sell Steinberg, which it acquired in January 2003. (click 'read more' for analysis)

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Steinberg Ships New Nuendo 3 (Mac/Win)

The highly-anticipated Nuendo 3 upgrade, Steinberg's would-be "Pro Tools killer", is now shipping worldwide. What's Nuendo? It's the high-end sibling to Cubase, and Steinberg's ultra-high-end media production software. This new release is big news for post production in particular, with AAF support, X-Send integration, Media Management tools, an a new Warp to Picture features, plus lots of beefed-up surround capabilities. Interestingly, unlike Digidesign's Pro Tools this is really a software product, priced at US$2,499.99; $299.99 buys the upgrade if you're already on Nuendo 2. I know our readers are diverse, so if you're a Nuendo user, drop us a line …

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Cubase SX 3.01 Adds RoomWorks Reverb (Mac/Win)

Steinberg says they have a "Christmas gift for all of our Cubase SX3 customers": the free 3.01 update announced today includes a new RoomWorks reverb. It's surround-capable, "studio-class," includes 60+ presets, and scales CPU usage to your machine and project usage. Many minor updates, too, some that will make a big difference — the MIDI device panels system now controls effects and not just instruments and a 'ping' can be used to measure processing delay of any external effect for automatic delay compensation. That's external as in hardware effects, adding to existing delay compensation features. (Apple's Logic, by comparison, still …

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Steinberg Virtual Bassist

Emotional falling out with your bass player? Fear not. Steinberg follows up on their Virtual Guitarist with Virtual Bassist, a combination of bass sounds, sampled phrases and automatic groove generation, and effects. OS: Mac, PC Format: VST, DXi, AU plugin; standalone (ReWire) Cost/Availability: EUR 215, Q1 2005

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