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mumpfucious

The Great Shutdown - What have we learned?

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When Cakewalk was dropped by Gibson, a lot of people looked elsewhere and jumped on competitive crossgrade offers.

Some went to Reaper, others Studio One, Mixcraft, Magic, Steinberg, or elsewhere.

Some decided the grass was greener.  Others decided to come back.

Before the end of Cakewalk, I had not much motivation to look elsewhere.  But I did, and I saw some really cool things.

I also found that even though some others had some cool features, I'm still more comfortable in the application formerly known as SONAR.

I think there's a lot to be learned from who went where, why they came back, etc.  And those that spent a lot of time looking at other DAWS probably have a lot of exposure to features that might work in CWBL.

 

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I found that each DAW has merit that I crossgraded to. I got Samplitude X3 suite. Presonus Studio One 3 and 4, Tracktion Waveform to mention a few.
Studio One I didn't mesh with at first but made an effort to watch the videos and started to click.  Samplitude I really like and the staff view works the way I need it to for my needs :) Not a diss at Cakewalk my the way. I  never abandoned Cakewalk but I didn't want to be left out in the dust if Windows upgrade broke my Cakewalk Platinum. So now I am happy Cakewalk is alive and it will be my primary DAW but Samplitude and Studio One and Tracktion I have used for different reasons. I won't upgrade each DAW at every major upgrade. Samplitude X4 I will wait till the upgrade price is a better deal. I don't use most of the stuff as it is. Tracktion Waveform is nice as a scratchpad and I will upgrade to version 10 when on sale. 

As several users on the forum that I respect have said. Each DAW has strength and weaknesses. Learn one deeply and another two to get by and you will be golden.
my 2¢ worth................Don't spend it all in one place

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I crossgraded to Studio One as well.  CW works better for me for most of my compositional needs, although SOP is loaded with a lot of cool features too.  One that I think would be a good candidate for CW to steal is the scratch pads.  It's a great tool for working out arrangements.

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I did the cross grade to to Studio One and never really got on with it even after migrating the projects I was working on.   I also own Reaper, Ableton Live and FLStudio and use them for different tasks.   But to finish tracks off I normally end up using CbB because it just feels right to me.

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During the period when CW was in limbo I got a good deal on Harrison Mixbus32C, which was on offer at the time. I exported the stems from a major project that I had been working on in Sonar and continued it to its completion in Mixbus. I enjoyed the experience and learned a lot in the process. I got stuck a few times but the Harrison forums helped over some hurdles.

Meanwhile I had already acquired a copy of Digital Performer (as a crossgrade at half-price) and was gradually reading my way through the well-written manuals. However I never really got to grips with it. It's a wonderfully elegant piece of software and I can't help admiring it, but somehow I can't quite get on the right wavelength to make good use of it. I haven't given up on it though and I intend to return to it again if I ever get some free time.

I also bought a copy of Reaper for the purpose of trying out @azslow3's conversion facility. It didn't work well on any of my projects so I didn't pursue it after that.

But Sonar Platinum is still my goto DAW. I'll move to CbB when they eventually get round to fixing the PVR settings problem.

Edited by Kev
Again, "at link" to member. Didn't work last time.

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Me, I took the Cubase Pro crossgrade offer, but found out I prefer to do my midi editing with Cakewalk (after starting with the Pro audio back in the mid-nineties). So, at the moment, my workflow goes usually like this:

1. Scetch the song stucture and chord secquence with Band in a Box. Export to midi (without the RealTracks audio).

2. Import midi to Cakewalk. Edit the hell out of midi tracks, probably replace the drums with midi loops, use Kontakt sounds and a couple of soft synths for ”keyboards”. Export midi to .wav, all files starting from 00:00:00.

3. Import audio to Cubase and edit markers and tempo from a Cakewalk screenshot. Add bass, guitars, vocals. Mix, remix.

4. Import the mix .wav file to Adobe Audition for editing the starts and ends and to export to 44.1 kHz/16bit formats when necessary.

Yes, I know, I could probably do everything I want with either Cakewalk or Cubase (or use the multitrack features of Audition instead of Cubase) after a brief studying of manuals, but this works for me...

 

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What have we learned? Well for starters, that one DAW is probably not enough... :D

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3 hours ago, abacab said:

What have we learned? Well for starters, that one DAW is probably not enough... :D

While I have access to other DAWs, I never use them.  Learning one single DAW well is far more valuable than trying to squeeze a couple features out of a different one.  Outside of using a DAW as a live performance tool (ala Abelton Live) or needing composition tools based on workflow and skill level, I don't see why anyone would think they need anything beyond what Cakewalk offers (assuming you had Platinum with pluings and instruments included).  

 

I'm loyal, I had no intention of jumping off the Cakewalk ship until it basically broke, and historically you have people still running Cakewalk products that are 10 years old or more just fine...Windows isn't a Mac platform where stuff just breaks after every OS update.  Even with the cross grade offers that were in place, no need to take them up on them as Cakewalk still worked fine.  

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I never really stopped using Sonar. I was going to keep using it till it wouldn't go no more and then deal with the problem when that happened. I did poke around with other DAWs though.

I have MixBus and Reaper in addition to Cakewalk. In both of those DAW's I keep reaching for stuff that isn't there. Well, I know that the stuff is there, I just kept not finding it. I found MixBus charming and I like it but I don't really use it.  I'm just not smart enough to figure out how to make mixes that sound good there.

To me Reaper's UI is like watching a 1970's cheap action movie. In particular I dislike how automation lanes are laid out. It's nice to see and have at everything at once but all that information on the screen confuses and angers my amygdala. I must have gone through about a gazillion themes trying to find one that worked for me. 

 

Edited by Kevin Walsh

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I never bothered to check out any alternative software and was happy to stick with Platinum forever if need be.

Multiple backups protected me somewhat from disaster, it was only the spectre of hardware failure that caused a bit of sphincter flutter 🤑

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I took a look at REAPER  and Harrison Mixbus.  REAPER  didn't really click with me although I do really like the way you can edit timing with stretch markers.  

I absolutely love mixing in Mixbus.  Having all of your channel strip functions right there without having to open  up plugin windows is a really nice experience. 

 

So I am now tracking and editing in SONAR and then mixing in Mixbus. 

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Before the shutdown, I was using Sonar, Studio One, Ableton Live, and Pro Tools (when I had to work on projects cut in a Pro Tools studio(. After the shutdown, I'm using CbB, Studio One, Ableton Live, and Pro Tools (when I have to work on projects cut in a Pro Tools studio).  :)

I even bounce around among DAWs a lot via AAF (hey Cakewalk - when are we going to have AAF import/export? I like it a lot better than OMF) and exporting/importing stems. 

I just wrote an article for Sweetwater inSync on the case for learning and using more than one DAW, I expect it will be published soon.  I think it will be of particular interest to those who are concerned about the learning curve involved in learning a new program.

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1 hour ago, Byron Dickens said:

 

So I am now tracking and editing in SONAR and then mixing in Mixbus. 

I've never used Mixbus, but the impression I got was that most people don't like to track or edit in it, but really like it for mixing and mastering.  

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I really respect the opinions of the Cakewalk loyalists, as I have been using it for 20 years, and have half a bazillion scratch pad projects in Cakewalk format that I am not moving anywhere! So I never intended to abandon Cakewalk!

Cakewalk is like an old pair of jeans. You just slip them on and they instantly feel comfortable, and you feel right at home in them.  But sometimes you might just might want to up your game.  Especially if those jeans  look like mom jeans, LOL! ;)

When the "Great Shutdown" happened, I was devastated, just like everyone else. But I jumped on the cheap Studio One Pro crossgrade deal as insurance.

I must say that I agree with Craig on the use of multiple DAW platforms. Long before the shutdown, I had acquired Tracktion Waveform for my MIDI composition efforts. And many years before that I received Ableton Live in a bundle with a new controller, and became fascinated with the creative workflow that tool makes possible.

So today, I would consider my main creative tools to be Cakewalk, Tracktion, and Ableton.  But I think I would choose Studio One Pro to mix and master any finished projects with.

Still love me some Cakewalk, though! :D

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During the panic of 2017 I upgraded my Cubase Elements to a full version and upgraded my old Studio One v2; not that I planned on abandoning Sonar/Cakewalk but I wanted to be more multi-lingual DAW-wise and it gave me an excuse to make the acquisition.  Unfortunately I haven't done much with either.
It's just that with everything else that has hit my personal fan over the last year 3740c1eab7baac7de1af0abfd622e821.jpg

Currently I'm using Cakewalk, Image Line and Ableton.  Cakewalk is my goto DAW, but I find that the different workflows of Image Line and Ableton help foster a different mode of creativity.

Edited by TheSteven

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I took also a look at some other DAWs. Of some I only read the documentation, some I tested as a trial and of others I had acquired a version that I installed (Samplitude, Mixbus, Tracktion). Although I have found advantages in other DAWs till this day, my conclusion is: Sonar Platinum/CbB is nearly the ideal DAW for me, because it fits best to my requirements and the way I work.

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I've dabbled with Samplitude for years and I'm very glad they took over ownership of Independence - which I've owned as used for a pretty long while. Mixing and editing is ok for me in Samplitude - but I could never seem to just start and finish a full project in it - I couldn't get along with it's midi implementation as well.

 I've dabbled with Mixbuss for a couple of years and though it's editing is ok - it took too long for me to really understand well enough to establish a suitable workflow. I do like to mix stems in MIXbuss - It  adds a dimension that I haven't been able to duplicate on other DAWs .

CbB  has it all going on as far as I'm concerned- I updated to Sonar Pro a few  months before Gibson did it's thing, and I didn't get all the Splat plugs and content available..... I hope they can eventually offer up previous menu of  plugs and instruments. Pro channel additions are hopefully in the future. I've done the time and have a large number of archives going back to the early / mid 90's. I think Noel and the bakers are the best in the business.

Very glad for  Band Lab's save.

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2 hours ago, Craig Anderton said:

How nice...the article was supposed to go live Friday, but Sweetwater published it when I asked if there was link I could reference. Here it is:

https://www.sweetwater.com/insync/case-using-one-daw/

 

Hey Craig, I noticed that Propellerheads have removed ReWire support from Reason Intro. Check out this latest comparison (scroll down & click on "Compare These": https://www.propellerheads.com/en/reason

Edited by abacab

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Wow, I don't think it was always that way...thanks very much for the heads-up!!! I've alerted inSync's editor, so the article can be fixed. I thought Reason Intro was just a re-branding of Reason Essentials, but I guess not.

The CbB forums - not just forums, but a collection of world-class proofreaders :)

 

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