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Does anyone still use Sonar?
Old 3 weeks ago
  #91
Here for the gear
 

I find the notation editor to be insanely bad, even by DAW standards. GarageBand does better, and REAPER feels like Sibelius compared to Cakewalk, here.

The marker system is so bad that it's a complete showstopper to me, esp. Given the utter lack of arranger features and lanes.

Inserting tempo and key changes do not surface as visible markers. Even Acid Pro 7 (from a decade ago) manages this properly.

You only get one level of folders, so can look a little disorganized with sizeable templates.

Missing things we may take for granted in software that is developed more aggressively.

Console gets really cluttered with Pro Channel.

Mediocre content browser.

Practically of no use of you need decent audio editing features. Integrating a wave editor is really clumsy (have to edit the Registry, doesn't surface in context menus audio items).

I'm actually kind of shocked this was a $500 product in 2017. Did people buy it only for the plugins, or something? It is frustrating to work in this DAW.

because it doesn't have dedicated lanes for tempo, key, time signature, parts, etc. the bad marker system really is just a non starter for me. You're end up tabbing through multidock Windows all day.

Not sure why they removed the context sensitive help. The PDF reference is tragically bad. I

Feels like a 15 year old version of Cubase Elements.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #92
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by GYMusic View Post
TNX for keeping this current. Long time Sonar user along with Reaper. When I was going to make the ProTools plunge, it had too many problems and not the MIDI that Sonar had. I still use tape too. Imagine that.
Pro Tool's MIDI is actually pretty decent, these days, and it uses the Sibelius engine for notation. I feel like people who drone on about this have likely not actually used a recent version of Pro Tools. on

Even Samplitude has Decent MIDI, and better notation view/editing than Cakewalk.

The issue with Pro Tools is pricing. It costs a ton of you tend to run large templates. The $599 Standard edition (perpetual license) has track limitations that professional composers are likely to run into.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #93
Lives for gear
 
norfolk martin's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Trensharo View Post
I find the notation editor to be insanely bad, even by DAW standards. GarageBand does better, and REAPER feels like Sibelius compared to Cakewalk, here.

The marker system is so bad that it's a complete showstopper to me, esp. Given the utter lack of arranger features and lanes.

Inserting tempo and key changes do not surface as visible markers. Even Acid Pro 7 (from a decade ago) manages this properly.

You only get one level of folders, so can look a little disorganized with sizeable templates.

Missing things we may take for granted in software that is developed more aggressively.

Console gets really cluttered with Pro Channel.

Mediocre content browser.

Practically of no use of you need decent audio editing features. Integrating a wave editor is really clumsy (have to edit the Registry, doesn't surface in context menus audio items).

I'm actually kind of shocked this was a $500 product in 2017. Did people buy it only for the plugins, or something? It is frustrating to work in this DAW.

because it doesn't have dedicated lanes for tempo, key, time signature, parts, etc. the bad marker system really is just a non starter for me. You're end up tabbing through multidock Windows all day.

Not sure why they removed the context sensitive help. The PDF reference is tragically bad. I

Feels like a 15 year old version of Cubase Elements.

I think it rather depends on what you are using it for. I use Sonar for recording and mixing bands rather than the type of compositional work you appear to be doing. I find it works very well in that context, where tempo maps and notation are
largely irrelevant.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #94
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by norfolk martin View Post
I think it rather depends on what you are using it for. I use Sonar for recording and mixing bands rather than the type of compositional work you appear to be doing. I find it works very well in that context, where tempo maps and notation are
largely irrelevant.
You can get Samplitude Pro Suite on sale practically year-round for $149-299. For Recording and Editing/Mixing/Mastering Audio... I wouldn't touch Cakewalk as long as that was an option. It is just too feeble, compared to Pro Tools or Samplitude in an Audio-only workflow, while not being better enough (if at all, frankly) for MIDI. REAPER is also an option, which is far better than Cakewalk at editing Audio, and now better for composition.

The problem with your argument is that while Cakewalk has stagnated in the MIDI area, and not measurably improved its Audio Editing, DAWs that are wildly superior to it for Audio-only workflow have gotten a lot better in the MIDI area. They aren't expensive, and a DAW is a small portion of your investment as an audio professional, anyways.

So, yes, Notation and Tempo Maps may be "largely irrelevant" for you, but you'll still do the audio better in Pro Tools or Samplitude while having an actual usable marker system, far better notation viewer/editing, and good Tempo/Key Change/Editing in those DAWs.

The problem with Cakewalk is that it fails in some really basic areas without any redeeming qualities in others, and that's probably why Gibson pulled the plug. Without the "yay, we're free now" marketing "miracle," the product wasn't really that competitive. Fandom couldn't change that reality.

Pro Tools and Samplitude could afford to be worse at MIDI, because they were so much better at Audio. Cubase and Logic could afford to be worse at Audio, because they were so much better at MIDI.

Cakewalk is awful for Audio, and fairly mediocre for MIDI. It's a product without any competitive advantage, except marketing speak. It didn't develop with the times. They were busy relying on bundled content (that they aren't distributing anymore, which basically exposes the base DAW for what it is) to sell upgrades.

The Skylight interface would be amazing if it wasn't a blatantly surface-level coat of paint.

Some of the lacks make for a disgustingly frustrating workflow and user experience.

VSTis and notation are good for mocking up music, even if you intent to publish it as sheet music. Just because you write it doesn't mean you will play that/those instruments, or have a virtuoso on hand to do so ;-)
Old 3 weeks ago
  #95
Lives for gear
 
norfolk martin's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Trensharo View Post
You can get Samplitude Pro Suite on sale practically year-round for $149-299. For Recording and Editing/Mixing/Mastering Audio... I wouldn't touch Cakewalk as long as that was an option. It is just too feeble, compared to Pro Tools or Samplitude in an Audio-only workflow, while not being better enough (if at all, frankly) for MIDI. REAPER is also an option, which is far better than Cakewalk at editing Audio, and now better for composition.

The problem with your argument is that while Cakewalk has stagnated in the MIDI area, and not measurably improved its Audio Editing, DAWs that are wildly superior to it for Audio-only workflow have gotten a lot better in the MIDI area. They aren't expensive, and a DAW is a small portion of your investment as an audio professional, anyways.

So, yes, Notation and Tempo Maps may be "largely irrelevant" for you, but you'll still do the audio better in Pro Tools or Samplitude while having an actual usable marker system, far better notation viewer/editing, and good Tempo/Key Change/Editing in those DAWs.

The problem with Cakewalk is that it fails in some really basic areas without any redeeming qualities in others, and that's probably why Gibson pulled the plug. Without the "yay, we're free now" marketing "miracle," the product wasn't really that competitive. Fandom couldn't change that reality.

Pro Tools and Samplitude could afford to be worse at MIDI, because they were so much better at Audio. Cubase and Logic could afford to be worse at Audio, because they were so much better at MIDI.

Cakewalk is awful for Audio, and fairly mediocre for MIDI. It's a product without any competitive advantage, except marketing speak. It didn't develop with the times. They were busy relying on bundled content (that they aren't distributing anymore, which basically exposes the base DAW for what it is) to sell upgrades.

The Skylight interface would be amazing if it wasn't a blatantly surface-level coat of paint.

Some of the lacks make for a disgustingly frustrating workflow and user experience.

VSTis and notation are good for mocking up music, even if you intent to publish it as sheet music. Just because you write it doesn't mean you will play that/those instruments, or have a virtuoso on hand to do so ;-)
I made no "argument" that I know of. I said it worked fine for me, recording musicians who play non-virtual instruments in real time. It still does. Your needs, problems and requirements are yours, not mine.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #96
I don't get the head of steam that Trensharo has apparently developed in trying to convince folks they're 'wrong' to use Sonar when they seem perfectly content doing so. Not everyone uses software in the same way -- in fact, it's safe to say there are myriad ways of using any one software.

Does Sonar have some spots I, myself, might argue with? You bet. Has it had a rocky course, bought first by Roland (who were reasonable-enough stewards of the software, I felt), then by Gibson, who clearly had no more clue about CW/Sonar than they did about Opcode. Obviously.

But I've been using CW/Sonar in some fashion since fall of 1996. I have literally hundreds of sets of project files, which I DO find myself returning to from time to time.

Are the MIDI creation and scoring tools 'behind the times'? Maybe. But I know how to work them and they do what I want. My electronica days are mostly in the past (back when it was, you know, cool )... and I certainly don't score symphonies and that sort of thing. Hell, I can barely decipher standard notation...

With regard to Samplitude, well, it's great they're still around, eh? I looked into their software maybe a decade ago when I did a full re-evaluation of my toolset, specifically Sonar, but even my OS. There were things to like about Samplitude that I found in their marketing, but I installed a demo and was not much impressed with workflow. But, again, we all work differently, others clearly love it (those hardy individualists!)

Some of Trensharo's observations seem like they might well be very compelling for those who work as Trensharo does, but for others, like myself or, perhaps, Norfolk M, sometimes the familiar, already-working solution we have beats spending money and plunging our production setups into the upheaval that a change in DAW typically means.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #97
Lives for gear
 
JohnRick's Avatar
My reason for using SONAR/CWbBL is just because of their notation/staff view. Drum notation works as it should, compared to, say REAPER, which is a DAW I else would be inclined to use full time – if it weren't for the fact that REAPER still has no proper drum notation.
Old 3 weeks ago
  #98
Gear Nut
 
smallstonefan's Avatar
 

I've been using it since the very beginning and still do. I use Ableton Live 10 for composing, but then I like to export the audio tracks from there and bring them into Sonar for mixing; I love the Console view and take lane abilities in particular, and I deeply wish Ableton 10 had those features...

It has a lot more features than you think, but using them requires diving in the manual, shortcut menus (and there are LOTS of menus), and shortcut keys. A lot of times it just isn't obvious how to do something but you usually can.

The engine isn't as stable as something like Ableton, but hey Freeze is actually Freeze (unlike where Ableton actually loads all of your plugins even if they are on frozen tracks which creates a problem if you're low on UAD resources).

Sonar has been very good to me over the years.
Old 1 week ago
  #99
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by theblue1 View Post
I don't get the head of steam that Trensharo has apparently developed in trying to convince folks they're 'wrong' to use Sonar when they seem perfectly content doing so. Not everyone uses software in the same way -- in fact, it's safe to say there are myriad ways of using any one software.

Does Sonar have some spots I, myself, might argue with? You bet. Has it had a rocky course, bought first by Roland (who were reasonable-enough stewards of the software, I felt), then by Gibson, who clearly had no more clue about CW/Sonar than they did about Opcode. Obviously.

But I've been using CW/Sonar in some fashion since fall of 1996. I have literally hundreds of sets of project files, which I DO find myself returning to from time to time.

Are the MIDI creation and scoring tools 'behind the times'? Maybe. But I know how to work them and they do what I want. My electronica days are mostly in the past (back when it was, you know, cool )... and I certainly don't score symphonies and that sort of thing. Hell, I can barely decipher standard notation...

With regard to Samplitude, well, it's great they're still around, eh? I looked into their software maybe a decade ago when I did a full re-evaluation of my toolset, specifically Sonar, but even my OS. There were things to like about Samplitude that I found in their marketing, but I installed a demo and was not much impressed with workflow. But, again, we all work differently, others clearly love it (those hardy individualists!)

Some of Trensharo's observations seem like they might well be very compelling for those who work as Trensharo does, but for others, like myself or, perhaps, Norfolk M, sometimes the familiar, already-working solution we have beats spending money and plunging our production setups into the upheaval that a change in DAW typically means.
1. If you can barely decipher standard notation, than you've probably never had to load a MIDI file with multi-voice notation and have it display properly - because this doesn't work in SONAR/Cakewalk.

Same for grace notes, etc.

So you're basically a slave to the Piano Role, which is slow to work in if you have a clue about notation.

2. The point about Samplitude wasn't that it's the greatest DAW on the planet. It's a DAW with a pretty obvious bias to Audio Recording/Tracking/Editing... However, over the last decade they have at least managed to deliver usable notation in their DAW. The point is that it's untouchable by Cakewalk for Audio Work, while still being better than it for MIDI, unless Cakewalk's Mediocre Matrix View is your thing.

Load the same MIDI or Notation that SONAR/Cakewalk chokes on, and it's just fine in Samplitude. You can work around SONAR's lack of audio editing by integrating a Wave Editor - somewhat.

I'm sure SONAR was AMAZING back in the ealier days, when it was a pioneer MIDI Sequencer and absolutely a market leader - and innovator... But, those days are long gone. The product works, and it isn't worth f*ck*ng up your workflow if it does everything you need it to do. I'm certainly not saying to do so.

But, it's a mediocre product by objective standards.

I don't really give a sh*t what anyone here uses. I don't know you, and literally don't care about you :-P

The thread is called "Does anyone still use SONAR." Why people don't still use SONAR is fairly on topic, IMO ;-)

Lots of people work the way Trensharo does. That's why there's a thread asking if people still use SONAR, and not those other DAWs. It's why those other DAWs have managed to remain financially solvent while Gibson was shutting down SONAR development. Try not to convince yourself that things in the real work exist as they do in your bubble, here...

I still think Cakewalk by BandLab is a great thing to happen for Windows music making enthusiasts, in a GarageBand sort of way.
Old 1 week ago
  #100
Lives for gear
 
ionian's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trensharo View Post
1. If you can barely decipher standard notation, than you've probably never had to load a MIDI file with multi-voice notation and have it display properly - because this doesn't work in SONAR/Cakewalk.

Same for grace notes, etc.

So you're basically a slave to the Piano Role, which is slow to work in if you have a clue about notation.

2. The point about Samplitude wasn't that it's the greatest DAW on the planet. It's a DAW with a pretty obvious bias to Audio Recording/Tracking/Editing... However, over the last decade they have at least managed to deliver usable notation in their DAW. The point is that it's untouchable by Cakewalk for Audio Work, while still being better than it for MIDI, unless Cakewalk's Mediocre Matrix View is your thing.

Load the same MIDI or Notation that SONAR/Cakewalk chokes on, and it's just fine in Samplitude. You can work around SONAR's lack of audio editing by integrating a Wave Editor - somewhat.

I'm sure SONAR was AMAZING back in the ealier days, when it was a pioneer MIDI Sequencer and absolutely a market leader - and innovator... But, those days are long gone. The product works, and it isn't worth f*ck*ng up your workflow if it does everything you need it to do. I'm certainly not saying to do so.

But, it's a mediocre product by objective standards.

I don't really give a sh*t what anyone here uses. I don't know you, and literally don't care about you :-P

The thread is called "Does anyone still use SONAR." Why people don't still use SONAR is fairly on topic, IMO ;-)

Lots of people work the way Trensharo does. That's why there's a thread asking if people still use SONAR, and not those other DAWs. It's why those other DAWs have managed to remain financially solvent while Gibson was shutting down SONAR development. Try not to convince yourself that things in the real work exist as they do in your bubble, here...

I still think Cakewalk by BandLab is a great thing to happen for Windows music making enthusiasts, in a GarageBand sort of way.
This can't be a real post. This is hilarious... Calm yourself there Tayseer, your mom's still heating up your chicken tendies.

Old 1 week ago
  #101
Quote:
I don't know you, and literally don't care about you :-P
And yet you sure are vehement about not caring... and wrote quite a bit in response, repeating your main points (which I wasn't necessarily disagreeing with). You also seem to presume that everyone is doing MIDI intensive composition, despite a number telling you they're primarily using Sonar for audio recording.

I just wondered why you seemed to be putting such emotional emphasis on other people's software choices -- and seemingly suggesting there must be something wrong with anyone 'still' using Sonar/CW.

I dunno. Some folks seem to get all emotionally caught up in stuff that seems largely inconsequential in the Big Picture.
Old 3 days ago
  #102
Here for the gear
 

Started with Sonar 4. Currently on X3. Haven't tried the Bandlab version.
Old 2 days ago
  #103
Quote:
Originally Posted by PolarAC View Post
Started with Sonar 4. Currently on X3. Haven't tried the Bandlab version.
It's works pretty well, but as folks will tell you, make sure you leave your old installation (and its plugins) in place. They can coexist well. You might need to adjust the folder settings so the new installation can see your VST's, etc. But FWIW, I haven't really needed to go back, except to check some previous settings and that sort of thing.
Old 1 day ago
  #104
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by theblue1 View Post
It's works pretty well, but as folks will tell you, make sure you leave your old installation (and its plugins) in place. They can coexist well. You might need to adjust the folder settings so the new installation can see your VST's, etc. But FWIW, I haven't really needed to go back, except to check some previous settings and that sort of thing.
I thought I had read that CWB requires the PC to phone home periodically. Is this the case?
I've always kept my DAW offline/airgapped. The last exception was to get AddictiveDrum 2 authorization a few years back. I know this is old school thinking nowadays, but it is a method I still live by.
Old 1 day ago
  #105
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by PolarAC View Post
I thought I had read that CWB requires the PC to phone home periodically. Is this the case?
It's a 6-month re-activation cycle. You fire up BandLab Assistant to trigger the process if your CbB falls into 'demo' mode. This thread (link below) is worth reading.

[ https://discuss.cakewalk.com/index.p...#comment-67698 ]
Old 7 hours ago
  #106
Quote:
Originally Posted by PolarAC View Post
I thought I had read that CWB requires the PC to phone home periodically. Is this the case?
I've always kept my DAW offline/airgapped. The last exception was to get AddictiveDrum 2 authorization a few years back. I know this is old school thinking nowadays, but it is a method I still live by.
As I understand it -- and consistent with my own experience since not long after they launched, once CWBL is in place on your system, you're good to go. If the host is connected to the 'net, then you'll get the usual update notices (which you can choose to ignore); but if you're not connected, that should be silent. From what I've read, and my own experience, there doesn't SEEM to be any phone-home requirement other than (of course) those optional updates/fixes to the software (you won't be hearing about on that machine, anyhow, when it's not connected).

The Bandlab app IS required for the downloading/installation, but it can either be turned off (and marked to not load on startup) or simply uninstalled completely. (If you want to update later, of course, you need to reinstall the little app.) Me, after uninstalling a time or two, I went back to simply leaving it turned off (and set to not auto-load).

While I gave up having an air-gapped DAW a couple decades ago, and it CAN be a hassle, it IS the safest course -- and probably a best practice in commercial facilities, particularly if other operators will be using the host in question. (You just never know what well-meaning idiots are going to do!)

Additionally, turning off networking will reduce the load on the OS and low level system messaging and interruptions -- though in today's DAW rigs, those are pretty well negligible compare to the loads our recording/production processes put on our machines. (I DID move my quite modest Dell-host back onto the less convenient -- but less low-level interruptive -- hardwire network after lazily networking it by Wi-Fi dongle. But doing low level latency testing DPC or another test utility showed me I was getting Wi-Fi handshake latency-spikes every so many seconds. They weren't huge but I picked up some nice new network cable for next to nothing online, put it back on the wire, by wire and stopped worrying about it.)
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