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Yikes, I'm Back!https://discuss.cakewalk.com/index.php?/topic/11330-yikes-im-back/

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When Gibson destroyed Cakewalk I made the decision to move to another DAW, and Digital Performer was my choice as I use MOTU hardware which I'm very happy with.

But after a year and 2 months with DP, I decided to go back to Sonar Platinum.  Here's why.  First of all, there is no "best DAW".  What there is however, is the "best DAW for YOU".

I really missed so much about Sonar:  the sharpness of the text, the beauty and clarity of  the screen,  the ease by which I can move from window to window and the stability of the program.  Particularly under Windows 10, it's running like a champ.  I missed the color-coded event list and the fact that I can see multiple staff views at one time.  I missed how it makes complex operations (like volume envelopes) simple.   Let's face it, DAWs are complex pieces of software.  No DAW that I've tried (Reaper, DP, Cubase, Sonar)  masks that complexity better than Sonar.  The soloing of tracks is a good example.  Under DP it's a mess, very confusing.  Soloing in the track view is different from the soloing in the mix view. That's nuts, it drove me crazy.  Changing layouts and window sets always was sluggish, even with a fast DAW with SSD drives, 32GB of RAM and an i7-9700 CPU and a good graphics card--always sluggish, sometimes taking 3 or 4 seconds just to switch views!  Sonar is instantaneous. 

Obviously Sonar isn't perfect either. It still can't display tied and dotted triplets and 32nd note triplets correctly.  But I can live with this because I create the score in Sibelius anyway.

So what have I been doing lately?  Here's the last track I produced in Digital Performer, it's the 4th movement of my 10th symphony:

Listen

Scored with VSL symphonic cube and several soft synths (Dune, Massive, Z3TA and the Yamaha MODX-6).  I hope you enjoy listening.

I'm sticking with the very last version of Platinum that Cakewalk produced.  If Bandcamp does anything new with notation, I'll consider upgrading.  But for now, I'll leave good enough alone and spend my time writing music.

By the way, on November 26 of last year, my studio flooded during a heavy rainstorm.  I had to remove everything, remove carpets, walls, furniture.  For 8 weeks I had no studio for the first time in 35 years.  Very stressful time.  Now, it's all back after much work, effort and cost.  I am extremely grateful. 

Best,

Jerry

 

 


 

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Not much as changed WRT the staff view but there have been quite a few bug fixes and improvements elsewhere. Here is what's new since the rollout of Cakewalk By BandLab in April 2018. Now that you have Platinum running, consider adding CbB. It installs like a upgrade (think X3 to Platinum) so both Platinum and CbB will be available with updated shared folders. CbB will use all the old SONAR content.

The installation process is documented here. Use the "If you are installing from BandLab Assistant" method,

 

Welcome back.

 

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Good to see you back, Jerry. We can always use the perspective of a "real" composer around here.

Unfortunately, I was unable to listen to your new movement ("this site can't be reached"). Might be because I'm on a dial-up connection - actually a gizmo that's a wifi router coupled to a cell phone and perched on a balcony above the garage. We improvise and make do out here on the island. 

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4 hours ago, bitflipper said:

We can always use the perspective of a "real" composer around here.

ouch

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I'm with scook...I had BandLab and Platinum installed side-by-side, but only went back to Sonar once a little over a year ago, when there was an FX Chain-specific bug in BandLab that affected my CA-X amps (the bug was fixed in the next iteration). If nothing else, BandLab is optimized quite a bit. But in any event, I'm glad your studio is up and running again, and you're back to your favorite workflow.

Edited by Craig Anderton

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I'm glad you're back  Jerry. Hey someone from Bandland please get in touch with Jerry about the notation that needs some love. The man knows what he is talking about and can express it very well unlike me :D

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21 hours ago, jsg said:

It still can't display tied and dotted triplets and 32nd note triplets correctly

Welcome back,  Jerry! Oldtimers rule! ;^)

It's a good thing I really don't need notation because the triplet issue would kill me. Last night I opened a melody track in Staff View just to watch it play for fun. The whole part is based on eighth triplets, and it was a disaster. 

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6 hours ago, David Baay said:

Welcome back,  Jerry! Oldtimers rule! ;^)

It's a good thing I really don't need notation because the triplet issue would kill me. Last night I opened a melody track in Staff View just to watch it play for fun. The whole part is based on eighth triplets, and it was a disaster. 

Actually, 8th note triplets are displayed correctly.  So are 16th note triplets.  Tied and dotted triplets  are not displayed correctly.  Same with 32nd note triplets.  Check your staff view resolution, that's the reason you're not seeing 8th note triplets.

Playback timing of all triplets, septuplets, quintuplets, etc. is flawless.  The problem is a display issue only.  Easy to correct when you export into a notation program whether you export using a MIDI file or an XML file.

Edited by jsg
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Howdy - been a while, and welcome back.

Cakewalk will live comfortably and stably, right alongside Sonar Platinum - this is how I run, and have zero issues with that setup.

I suggest you give Cakewalk by Bandlab a try, as they have REALLY done a wonderful job of continuing to develop and to maintain it.

Bob Bone

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Welcome back Jerry.
Loved your classical composition with a modern type tubular bells inserted too.  🙂

 

Post it up in the songs forum.

Edited by garybrun

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13 hours ago, jsg said:

Actually, 8th note triplets are displayed correctly.  So are 16th note triplets.  Tied and dotted triplets  are not displayed correctly.  Same with 32nd note triplets.  Check your staff view resolution, that's the reason you're not seeing 8th note triplets.

Playback timing of all triplets, septuplets, quintuplets, etc. is flawless.  The problem is a display issue only.  Easy to correct when you export into a notation program whether you export using a MIDI file or an XML file.

Yes, this part has many tied trips, and also a lot of 'partial' trips. This is where CbB really falls down; it only reliably recognizes triplet timing if all three notes are present. Otherwise it fills and trims incorrectly, and notates things with  whacky combinations of dotted notes and rests, regardless of the display resolution. It gets even uglier if you mix triplet 8ths and straight 16ths or 'oddball' triplet timings like 3 in the time of 5 16ths.

It helps to hard-quantize both start times and durations rather than relying on filling and trimming, but it can be a lot of work to get the durations right. As you pointed out, it's just a display issue, and easy enough to export to a dedicated notation program. I use Notion when I really want something to look right, but getting  bass and treble piano parts into a grand staff in Notion is more difficult than it should be - easy with XML, but since the Cakewalk notation is wrong, it has to be MIDI. Recording from CbB to Notion in real time is the easiest way, but Notion doesn't record sustain pedal (a longstanding feature request of many users).

I'd  make a habit of converting all my solo piano stuff to notation for posterity if it were easier.  Since I don't actually read and write notation very well, I have to rely more on  the software to get it approximately right as a starting point. 

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On 2/11/2020 at 4:18 AM, jsg said:

I made the decision to move to another DAW, and Digital Performer was my choice

doh! ;)

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On 2/10/2020 at 9:18 PM, jsg said:

But after a year and 2 months with DP, I decided to go back to Sonar Platinum.  Here's why.  First of all, there is no "best DAW".  What there is However, is the "best DAW for YOU".

Welcome back!

Absolutely correct about finding the best DAW for you.  The best DAW is the one which enables you to be the most musically productive.

I was fixated with the tied / partial tuplet thing in Sonar, but what really mattered was the work flow.

Right now, I'm having the most fun with Mixcraft (crappy notation) and REAPER (better notation than Cakewalk).   I'm watching for a reason to return to Cakewalk - hoping for chord / composition enhancements.

Edited by pbognar
correction

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Still hanging on the Cakewalk sidelines.  If they had never "gone away", I would have never looked at anything else, but when they did, I went over to Studio One.  I have been watching the developments here, have Cakewalk installed on my machine (with all of the old Platinum lifetime updates attached) and go back and forth and still find Studio One a bit more to my liking. There are a number of Cakewalk features that I like/prefer but right now, still a few more on the Studio One side (and the fact that I've bought into the hardware side of Presonus doesn't help lean Cakewalk's way). 

I could honestly get done everything I need in either one and could do so fairly seamlessly, but I'd like to settle at some point in one place or the other.  I have a few old projects in Cakewalk that I'd like to finish, so I'd likely do so here.  I might start a few new ones here and again as well.

Since this is a hobby and all "fun" for me, some of my own entertainment with it is the actual use of the software and all of its features and less about how many tunes I can finish.  I'm slow anyway!  Don't have a lot of time to spend and really like the "experience" of playing in the studio.

All that said - I would strongly recommend that you install Cakewalk and keep it up to date.  They are squashing bugs and adding features all the time and if you stay on x3 or whatever, you are missing out on those updates and fixes and stuck in 2017 (or wherever you left off).

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JERRY!   This piece is so good!   You've really improved your sound over the years. I love the mix of orch and synths you've got going here.

 

Glad your back.

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On 2/12/2020 at 5:12 PM, Blades said:

I would strongly recommend that you install Cakewalk and keep it up to date.  They are squashing bugs and adding features all the time and if you stay on x3 or whatever, you are missing out on those updates and fixes and stuck in 2017 (or wherever you left off).

+1   In fact the one that Noel just fixed in the latest HotFix should be particularly relevant to working with large and long orchestral arrangements, as would the recent change to MIDI Prepare Using Buffer management:

Long MIDI project crashes on playback after seeking to high time value.

 

 

 

 

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Well fellows,

I tried the latest version of Cakewalk.   Unfortunately, they degraded the notation editor.  It's now a 2 step process to select a group of notes and perform an operation.

In Sonar Platinum, you select a group of notes, right-click and perform velocity, transposition, note length, etc.   Easy.

In the newest version, you have to select a group of notes with one tool and then change tools in order to right-click and perform an operation on those notes.  that alone is a deal breaker for me since I spend a lot of time using the notation editor.  Unless someone can show me a way to do that in one step, I have no reason to upgrade.

I just finished a new piece in Sonar Platinum using MIDI, audio and softsynths.  If there are any bugs (which of course there are) they had no impact on my workflow. For me good enough is good enough.  My experience with DAW software has been quite consistent over the past 30 years:  A new version adds features, fixes bugs, and creates new bugs.  I've never seen it otherwise.

I'll stick to Platinum as long as I can.  If Bandlab has the time, energy and resources to improve the notation editor, they know how to reach me.  I'd be happy to share my experience.  I am curious though how Bandlab can continue to invest time and energy into new upgrades and still give away such a sophisticated DAW for free.   Cubase, Pro Tools, Logic, Reaper and DP all cost hundreds of dollars.  How is Bandlab doing this?

Jerry

 

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