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Lightweight DAW recommendations MIDI Processors
Old 24th January 2016
  #1
Here for the gear
Lightweight DAW recommendations

OK firstly I've had a good dig around threads, and was wanting to get some more specific recommendations..

I am a long time mac/logic user but my MBP broke down and I am now only have access to 2 windows laptops running 7 & 8.

I am doing all my music at the moment on an outboard setup using a hardware sequencer (Yamaha qy700) running akai and emu samplers and a couple of synths (alpha juno 2 and korg polysix).. which I am loving. but.....

My issue now is getting my stuff into a DAW for mixing and finishing off.
I have ordered the expert sleepers USAMO so am hoping that will get me locked in sync with a DAW so I can track down tidily... I have a focusrite scarlett 18i20 interface which will give me 8 analog ins and 2 spdif ins..

So..... what I'm really after is a lightweight DAW that will run smoothly on a consumer laptop, basically for tracking down...hopefully up to 10 tracks simultaneously (i have a 7200rpm external usb3 G-drive which I hope can handle what I throw at it)... after I've done some tinkering I will then bounce down again and send to my buddy in London with his big Logic setup and expensive plug-ins / speakers for mixdown and mastering..

So far I'm looking at Reaper as I've heard it isn't so resource-hungry and stable so I've heard.

If anyone could throw any suggestions my way, that would be great... I don't need all the bells and whistles, as I can move across to Ableton or Cubase or Studio One after I've safely tracked down to do plug-in work and have some fun.

So yeah, stable, not resource-hungry... and able to run on W7 or 8.. recording around 10 inputs simultaneously without flopping out!!

Last edited by joeyperoni; 24th January 2016 at 03:09 PM.. Reason: spelling
Old 24th January 2016
  #2
Lives for gear
Reaper. Most efficient DAW there is. Cross platform and small footprint and fully featured. Only $60 for a license and the demo has no limitations.
Old 24th January 2016
  #3
I'd think just about any DAW software program would do it for you. I'd suggest downloading some demo's of lower end versions of DAW's. I'm a long time Cubase user, have briefly used Cakewalk, but I've heard some good things about Reaper, and that it's a great value so I'd definitely try that out.
Old 24th January 2016
  #4
Lives for gear
 

MAGIX Samplitude Pro X Silver Free Download taster. 8 tracks max. But you get the finest audio engine.
Old 24th January 2016
  #5
Gear Nut
Studio One Prime. Very intuitive! I had it installed in 10 minutes and had my first music made in it within 30 minutes.
Old 25th January 2016
  #6
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by hyper.real View Post
MAGIX Samplitude Pro X Silver Free Download taster. 8 tracks max. But you get the finest audio engine.
When you're not suffering ASIO errors.

OP; I'll take a fairly under powered (by DAW standards) laptop running Reaper (Windows 8.1) on remote sessions. Works pretty flawlessly tracking a full band live without issue. I'll admit I'll dump those tracks into something else for overdubs, editing, and final mixdown only because I have not worked extensively in Reaper and have other tools that I'm used to that fit my workflow. But Reaper has come a long way and if I had the time I would love to take the time to master it.
Old 25th January 2016
  #7
Here for the gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Mulcahy View Post
When you're not suffering ASIO errors.

OP; I'll take a fairly under powered (by DAW standards) laptop running Reaper (Windows 8.1) on remote sessions. Works pretty flawlessly tracking a full band live without issue. I'll admit I'll dump those tracks into something else for overdubs, editing, and final mixdown only because I have not worked extensively in Reaper and have other tools that I'm used to that fit my workflow. But Reaper has come a long way and if I had the time I would love to take the time to master it.
Thanks for the replies everyone..

Mr. Mulcahy (I had a science teacher called Mr. Mulcahy!!)
this sounds like me... weak laptop etc.
OK I'll give Reaper a red hot go.

On a side note, both my interface and my ext disk are USB,
is that going to be a problem??
Old 25th January 2016
  #8
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by joeyperoni View Post
OK I'll give Reaper a red hot go.
Actually that's the best choice for a consumer laptop and not even what I use myself but I have no problem recommending the proper choice for the situation. In fact I personally use Sonar which is a lot closer to Logic but I wouldn't recommend it for a consumer laptop. Cubase would also be closer to Logic more than Reaper as well.

Quote:
On a side note, both my interface and my ext disk are USB,
is that going to be a problem??
Shouldn't be but it depends on the Laptop's USB configuration. Most laptops have one main USB output and the rest are slaved off that. Most audio interfaces need to be hooked up to the main USB out and not the slave. Hopefully the laptop will have a main USB 2 output (best for audio interface) and a main USB 3 output (best for USB 3 ext drive). Worse comes to worse you can pick up a powered USB hub.

I'd also recommend stetting the laptop to "High Performance" as opposed to "power saver" or "balanced" in Windows. Very important on any Windows laptop for DAW.
Old 25th January 2016
  #9
Lives for gear
 

OP; on the USB question, test them and see. If it has USB 2.0/3.0 you should be good. I did have an issue with a usb audio interface that did not have it's own power supply not getting enough juice off the laptop's USB buss. I solved it by using a powered USB hub. I'm now running with an interface that uses it's own power does not rely on the USB buss and it works fine.
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