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Help Choosing DAW Software Utility Software
Old 9th April 2006
Here for the gear

Help Choosing DAW Software

Im at a crossroad with this ive been looking at Nuendo, Cubase, and Logic. Now being that im going to be running a G5 and Apogee Ensemble i thought it would be cool to get Logic but I want to make sure that it is a reputable solid software. I also need to be able to interface with other studios so is there software that i could convert the format to a pro tools session with? The Ensemble runs with any Core audio program so ive also been looking at Nuendo and Cubase. I have no budget so anything is cool. I will mostly be tracking vocals on it but i will be getting into production slowly in the future so i want to be able to expand. Im not planning on switching to a different DAW software after this so i would like to just buy it and be over with looking all over the place. Would just like opinions of what you all like better and why. Ive been having a hard time choosing because people say logic is better at midi and production but horrible at laying down vocals and mixing on it. I really dont care if it has loops and sounds on it already as i will aquiring all that myself so that isnt a factor in deciding. Basically as of right now Nuendo and logic seem like the software to go with. But for those who use these i would like opinions. Thanks in advance!
Old 10th April 2006
Gear Guru
Kenny Gioia's Avatar

I think that Logic would be a great choice.

I switched from Logic to Pro Tools because they have better controllers but I still miss some of Logic's features.
Old 10th April 2006
Lives for gear

In regards to Nuendo and Cubase, think hard as to whether you need Nuendo's "extra features". They share the same audio engine, there are no fundamental differences between the two other than the price and Cubase's unfortunate toy image. Can't speak for logic, but I use Cubase every day in a commercial studio environment with very few complaints. No DAW is perfect.

Old 10th April 2006
Lives for gear

I guess you are dedicated to a Mac platform? If you go PC, Logic is out of the question. Agreed that there is very little reason to buy Nuendo, since SX has most of the features you would ever need.

IMO - cost of the DAW and the computer is insignificant compared to the cost of all the plugins, effects and instruments, that you would want.

The huge advantage of choosing a PC VST host DAW is that you can get nearly every plugin effect or instrument that you want, for free. Legitimate freeware, with no iLock, Pace or dongle or challenge/response. Totally guilt free, Free-ware.

And i'm not talking rubbish. PC users have had free convolution reverbs and basically free everything, for a long time. And if you want to pay a little, while still avoiding Pace, iLocks, dongle, Challenge/response etc - you can buy some very, very nice software that is the equal or better than price-gouging commercial stuff.

Of course somebody will try to claim that Waves stuff is best. Well considering most bedroom wannabie hackers are all running stolen copies of Waves, i'm not sure I want to go there. The greed and stupidity of some software vendors has forced me to re-evaluate where I want to spend my money, hence my revived interest in real hardware again.

Money invested in software will be basically pissed away in a few years. Money invested in hardware should have a bigger payoff, especially in sound quality.

I use software for what it's good for, but i try to get free stuff - purely to avoid the nightmare of ilock, pace, dongles, c/r. There are some reasonable developers who get my money because they wisely avoid this crap.

So that's why I love SX on a PC ...
Old 10th April 2006
Lives for gear
Digital Performer and DSP-Quattro

I was a PT LE user, but my Digi-hardware became "unsupported" about 25 months after I bought it. I kept on for a while, until OSX/.1/.2/.3/.4 required upgrade to PT6/7/8 while obsoleting my (paid!) plugs, making the hardware not work at all, and using up lots of time without useful output. ProTools is now "just another DAW", and does not deserve worship. If it works for you, great.

Digital Performer recognizes my ancient DigiHardware, new RME hardware, Mac built-in, as needed, to the limit of my ability to plug it all in. The GUI is reasonably intuitive to a PT user with a speedy card (cheat sheet), and the only "dongle" is the printed manual. There is NO .pdf of a manual, and you will need it to perform advanced functions. imho, MOTU does this piece of software better than it does anything else, as it should, since Performer dates back to Mac SE, 1985 or so.

DP recognizes bunches of Metric Halo ULN-2 and 2882 firewire boxes. No limit, afaik.

DSP-Quattro is new editing-performing software that I took a chance on. Not bloatware, but it does a LOT of stuff for editors, performers, recordists. Stable, with excellent support. OS9 and OSX. Less than $200, e-mail+download.

One of my Spock-like buddies uses Samplitude on a PC and finds it excellent. There is a dongle, but it is reportedly trouble-free.

Tip for desktop dongle owners: Get a PCI USB card with an internal USB port (and some external ports). Put the dongle on the internal port, and LOCK THE CASE. Make them steal the whole computer, instead of a tiny palmable item. You will also keep your expensive RAM like this. Most people won't immediately notice that their computer has gone from 8192MB to 512MB by performance of the desktop, but you will notice the bill to replace big memory. Lock the case!

Old 9th June 2006
Gear Nut

It all comes down to workflow, I suppose. I'm a fan of Logic, and with a solid workflow, it'll do just about any job nicely. I've just never been able to fully adapt to Cubase/Nuendo's way of doing things, so my personal opinion is "go Logic." (Apogee promotes the Ensemble with Logic anyway.)

That said, if you choose to go the Steinberg route, go with Cubase unless you plan on doing some serious post production work in the future. Steinberg makes great programs.

I definitely recommend trying demos of both Logic and Cubase before buying just to see which one fits your mindset better.

Old 9th June 2006
Gear Maniac
Søren Bendixen's Avatar

Hi there

I working on (both Pc and mac, expect logic and DP)
PTLE 6.4 (6 years): Good, especially in audio editting. Very nice arrange window. Will be testing 7.x in a few weeks. ok plugins (improved over the years). Coming from the analog world (see later) it felt very natural. Some of the drawningstuff in PT is still something I really like and miss when not workning in PT. Although you can buy the extra package I think it´s still limited re. number of tracks.
And of course limited to their own hardware although you can get around it via digital I/O.
Cubase SX3: (4 months) well, i´m getting used to It, but the main bad thing is (to me) very bad sounding plugs delivered with the program. I used Cubase 5.x some years ago, and it worked fine despite bad sounding plugs (to me the plugs haven´t improved). It think it´s heavy on mac.
Logic Pro 7.2.x ( 1 month!): I was scared, cause I used logic some years ago (4 - 5.x) and couldn´t find my way around. This time more experienced with software (I came from electric guitars and stompboxes back then!) it´s very cool and has some very very good plugs.
Logic still have problems with rewire (bad looping) and the enviroment is very dark (I haven´t found a way to change it yet), but overall i feel "at home" and has experienced a good workflow already. Limited to Mac, but runs a lot better on mac than Pro Tools (quite heavy)
Digital performer (one session with an engineer running the stuff): If I had the time (and money) I would check this out. Very nice and well working windows (epecially the arrangewindow). It did have som rewire problems (same as Logic). Very nice tools (example: working with pitch, and realtime timestretch - very cool - hope to find the same feature in logic..). I think DP is releasing more plugs now and the one I´ve heard in use where very usefull and good sounding and workning.
Tracktion (one months): hmm..the hardware (spike) is ok (can play really loud, but of course comsumerlevel) I didn´t like the software. The windows are "flat" (2D feel) and the workflow strange. Plugs wasn´t really anything. The audiostretch was very cool though.

From my limited experience I would only leave out Cubase and Traction. But I think it very personal (re: felling "home") and has a lot to do with just making a decicsion and of course if you´re considering Apogee Ensemble logic could be a good solution bacause of the integration.
They all have special features, so....

Just my opinion...

Good luck
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