Comparing different DAW features! Fun Fun Fun

Comparing different DAW features! Fun Fun Fun
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Specifically what makes it happen in half the time? What does it do that Pro Tools doesn’t?


Such as?


@takka360, @Jclampitt, I’m not contesting the validity of the other DAW’s. I was hoping someone could toss out some key features, and then hoping to weigh the efficiency or proprietary qualities against everything else. Basically, if I’m picking out a program and want to see an overview of…well…anything, I wanna know what it does or doesn’t do vs all the other options.


I am old and can’t even figure out where to post this?? Anyway, I used to use cakewalk, but now I am using studio one professional. The work flow is so simple. I use the built in melodyne on my bad vocal notes more and more as I get older (68) ha ha I don’t know much about mixing, but the EQ, compression etc is so easy. There is a mastering part that I have messed with, but seem to screw up the track worser:)




As far as the workflow annoyances I mentioned compared to the older versions of Sonar, an example would be splitting up and moving around clips. Before I would just right click, select split, and move the clip wherever I wanted. Now there are several tools that can be selected that determine what the mouse pointer does. There is the smart tool, the select tool, move tool, edit tool and so on. So now I need to have the right tool selected depending what I want to do, which annoys me at times.

I should point out though that it only annoys me because I was used to doing things a certain way before. The different tools actually make other things a lot easier, like volume automation and speed comping. So it all balances out, and overall I like the new Sonar better. But this isn’t about old Sonar vs new Sonar.

Some features I like about Sonar besides all the cool vsts it comes with, are things like the speed comping, the pro channel, built in melodyne and drum replacer. I haven’t used most other daws so I can’t say which ones do or don’t have equivalent features. I like Sonar though, and when it comes down to it, the annoying workflow issues I have had with it are just annoying because some things changed, mostly for the better, and it’s taking time to get used to. Like learning a new daw.


Hi Jonathan
I see what you are looking for here. As for some of the reaper specifics:
Reaper may be a faster workflow than PT in that all tracks are just track and can be universally routed anywhere. (oversimplification) But this is much faster than making an aux and routing it to a buss and such. Also there is drag and drop routing and right click routing that speeds things up even more.
Offline bounce was not available in PT. Now it is. But reapers render engine is still way faster.
Reaper can render waveforms in place with or without fx in practically no time. You can still do it a number of different ways in reaper that are the same as PT and studio one. (like render and import back into project.) But I don’t know if any other daw does it the same way.
On interesting thing about this item rendering… it renders by default to 32bit. So if you push an item fx too hard you still won’t clip. Not that this would be a good practice. But it is a slight safety net…
Anyway… I think you covered reaper pretty well from the start. I’m interested in what folks have to say about all the other daws…


Hey Rich. I know its 6 months later, but preparing to soft launch the studio, I’m doing to ton of prep work and system tests. In the process I started balancing, debugging, and updating all of the DAWs. With the increasing popularity and affordability of reaper, I realized I have to get this DAW up to speed, as more mixing projects are becoming Reaper based in my region of the U.S. market.

I just began conforming the Reaper workflow to mimic Pro Tools, and the advantages you stated several months ago are indeed still advantages. The routing in ProTools is still clunky as hell. Like in Nuendo, you must declare a track to be mono or stereo before you instantiate it. You must also declare it to be audio or midi. Furthermore, you must declare it to be an auxiliary or a master fader. I think the open routing in Reaper was a stellar idea, and I have yet to see the disadvantages of it.

They introduced it in 2013 (if I recall) when they launched PT11 HD. I haven’t actually tested it against reaper. I’ve never had a problem with the render speed, but I could easily see this being the case.

I haven’t gotten to there yet. How is Reapers render in place different from all the others?

I’m continuously surprised with the agility and flexibility of this thing. There are a lot of videos out there of people revamping the menus, key commands, and layouts to mimic Pro Tools. I’m going through and over-riding about 200 key commands in every daw, and I’m doing it by hand, because I need to test them one at a time and make sure the function of the keyboard shortcut performs EXACTLY they do in ProTools. But one thing I do LOVE, is that you can leave the key command editor window open and still have full access to everything in the session! That’s unique. You have to Save and Apply in all other DAWs. I thought about importing a key command template that other people have made to mimic Pro Tools behavior. But I’m really better making one for myself, since I’m only ever gonna have to do it once. And its helping me get thoroughly familiar with where stuff is in Reaper.

But man, its crazy…I’ve been overhauling reaper keys for about 4 hours now, and I’m about to the point where I could probably throw together a midi VI demo track or do a quick vocal shoot. I don’t have all the midi shortcuts replaced yet, and I haven’t played around with the track comping yet, but I love how the Cockos guys have sort of eclectically consolidate the best features from a lot of different DAWs. Instead of saying ‘screw it, we don’t need that feature in ours’, they say ‘hey look! We can do that!’. And it adds an insane value to all of the users. That Cockos company is just frickin unreal. I hope they never sell the fuck out and turn into another corporation so big it forgets about its users.


Every time I use another DAW, that is the thing that drives me nuts.I don’t see any benefit to making tracks act like that. If I want a track to be an instrument, I’ll feed it MIDI and put a VI on it. Why I would need to decide beforehand is beyond me.


Well i’m still using cubase 6 , i havent found much i cant do on it and i grew up on early versions of cubase so know it like the back of my hand.
Yeah its a bit dated, but for me to learn a new daw would be pointless.
I do like some of the effects routing on pro tools and i love the ease of looping and sampling with the likes of FL and reason.
But for me cubase has it all. End of.


I was told by an anonymous avid, um…pro tools…software writer person, that people have dealt with it in the past, so they can deal with it now. He politely apologized for the buffoonery of bureaucrats running the software division (who are finance and business guys that don’t know the first damn thing about software) and explained to me that the mentality is ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’, and that they are to focus their energy on developing new things that make money. And beyond that, he said it would take time and energy to figure out how to reconcile something about multi-mono vs interleaved, and that the audio clip file management system was somehow deeply embedded in the architecture of the DAW.

In logic you can toggle OO button to O right on the front of the channel strip. You still have to declare instrument or audio. In DP, a track is a track, and its like you have a front half of the track and a back half. The front half is always the same, but any variation format (audio, VI, external midi, Aux) can be attached to the front have. This is probably the closest thing to reaper. Ableton is a just a pain the ass and probably always will be.

Of all the majors, I Cubase is by far the worst in my opinion when it comes to routing. Not only is your routing and bussing restricted, you have to open up a separate dialogue box to configure your Auxes. You can’t do it from your mixer window or workspace. Furthermore, the heavily restricted use of inserts is appalling. They only give you 7 insert slots. The first 2 are dedicate pre, the last 2 are dedicated post fader.

Get this. If you are using a controller like a System 5 or a Nuage rig, you’re also committed to their effects chain, which is completely independent of your inserts. So you have a Cubase EQ. A Cubase Saturator. A Cubase compressor. A cubase Gate. Whatever. So what…a gate’s a gate. Just use it. Right? You can re-arrange the order of their native effects chain. But you can’t re-arrange it around your plugins. All Cubase effects come either before or after your 3rd party plugins. So you can NOT do this:

Cubase Filter
Waves Gate
Cubase EQ
Cubase Saturator
Waves Compressor
Cubase Limiter.

The worst part of all of that, is you can’t deactivate or remove that native plugin chain. If you have 100 tracks in a session, that things either on all 100 tracks, or off all 100 tracks. And those annoying as fucking hell racks take up the 2 whole damn screen, and opening one gate, opens ALL dynamics processors on ALL 100 channels.

The real kick in the junk, which I can’t believe Steinberg didn’t deal with is when using the Cubase mixer you can’t scroll with your mouse. You have to click and drag a handle bar on the side of the screen. This goes for up and down, and side to side. I’ve been all over forums trying to see if there’s a way to change the mouse behavior but no. And it is VERY annoying :frowning:

I hope and pray that someone reads this that can tell me how to work around this shit, because I’ve been tolerating it for years. PLEASE somebody make me wrong here!!!


Hi Jonathan
Yup… it’s been 6 months and I’ve been MIA for most of that time here…
Realized that I was doing too much discussing and not enough “doing”… and/or making some$$ :slight_smile:
Recorded about 30 tunes of my own on top of mixing/ coproducing for others. That along with slightly more guitar work has been keeping me busy…
But to answer a couple of specifics:
Yup… reapers offline bounce IS significantly faster than PT given the same format… and reaper offers a few more formats and options than PT.
There are actually quite a few ways to “render in place”. You can just straight render the track with all fx . You can do the same with or without respect for the fader level or sends. In these options you can also mute the original which puts the track and all of its fx offline (no cpu). Or you can freeze the track which does the same thing but keeps it on the same track and can be undone/redone at any time
You can also send a track or group of tracks to anther track and render/freeze that… you can print stems by render/freeze on folder tracks… you can make stems with associated fx by sending your fx returns back to your folders… So many options… including sending tracks to other tracks and recording them in real time. You can also render tracks, selections or multiples thereof thru the render menu and deposit them back into the directory…
Kudos on diving in and doing it all by hand. But I’d also bet that someone has done a lot of it already and posted it on the reaper stash… If not, you could save the config and actions and post it there. If for nothing else, you will have a backup to all your hard work available online… :slight_smile:
Have fun, Bro


You donm’t have to declare anything in Sampltiude though that wired activation key (where you have to sing the German national anthem) is damned annoying.


Bumping this thread to remind myself to retag it later today.