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Dr.Gerry

Probably a silly question from an old dinosaur

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Hi All,

I am a longtime Cakewalk user. I remember back in the day when Bandlab took over Cakewalk there was a lot of pushback from Cakewalk diehards. There were lots of comments suggesting that the Bandlab version of Cakewalk would not be as good as the original, that you would lose features if you changed to the Bandlab version etc etc. I personally wasn't too pleased by the Bandlab move as I had recently paid for the lifetime subscription thing for Cakewalk. Not long after that  started to lose interest in my audio pursuits and just put Cakewalk away for a couple of years.

I have recently had my interest stirred again and have been back into Cakewalk and doing some mixing. It occurred to me that my version of Cakewalk (Sonar Platinum) is now rather old (Version 23.10.0). I was wondering - a) Should I 'upgrade' to the Bandlab version of Cakewalk b) will I lose any features if I install the Bandlab version of Cakewalk c) if I do take the plunge, will the Bandlab version of Cakewalk install over the top of my current installation, and keep all my plugins etc

And if there are any old dinosaurs on this forum, has anyone tried what I am considering, was it a smooth process, and is Bandlab's Cakewalk any better than the version I currently have installed?

 

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Yea, upgrade away.. and it won’t overwrite your present version of sonar.

Edited by Alan Tubbs
Clarity

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CbB installs as an upgrade to SONAR.

IOW, the DAW, Cakewalk Content, ProgramData and User directories are version specific with Platinum and CbB having their own separate folders.

The "Shared" folders are all updated to CbB which is backward compatible with Platinum. This includes the PC modules, DX plug-ins, utilities such as the plug-in manager and VST scanner.

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There have been a lot of stability and bug fixes added since the takeover. 

As everyone has said, just download the Bandlab assistant and install the new version. Leave you old Sonar alone. Bandlab will be a different icon on your desktop and will use all your settings and Sonar VST's. You might want to look back and read the new release documentation so you are aware of the changes and feature updates. You'll notice most are bug fixes, something we were crying out for before the takeover. I could not go back to Sonar. 

The latest    https://help.cakewalk.com/hc/en-us/articles/360022009394-Latest-Release-Notes

The complete list ( I think) https://docs.google.com/document/d/1aFOe_zJrd3x2EnaZ_Jc3iSbZPG2WANiCD4_RP83OjlA/edit 

Edited by John Vere

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Thanks for all the replies. It looks like installing is the recommended choice. I still have a couple of worries though.

When I run the CBB installer it asks if I want to install Drum Replacer (and 3 other options), but I already have these installed as part of my Sonar installation. Why doesn't CBB recognise this? If I select to install these components, will they overwrite my currently installed ones? And speaking of overwriting - when I installed Sonar I just did a default installation, so all the Shared Paths etc are set to whatever Sonar set them to by default. When the installer for CBB runs, it says it is going to write to my already existing shared paths eg it wants to install plugins to c:\Program Files\Cakewalk\vst plugins. I fail to see how it can write to this folder without overwriting at least some of my existing plugins? When I ran the installer, Sonar was actually running, and I got a prompt from CBB that it needed to overwrite files that were in use. This is a pretty strong indication that CBB is going to overwrite stuff that Sonar relies on.

Sorry to sound like such a nervous nellie, but given that Sonar is no longer available, if something messes up my current installation I have no means to rescue or reinstall it. I see scook mentioned that everything would be backward compatible with Sonar, but has anyone really tested this? I would imagine most people install CBB and then just use it rather than Sonar, but I just have this niggling doubt in the back of my mind.....again, sorry to sound like a bit of a wimp.....!

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25 minutes ago, Dr.Gerry said:

When I run the CBB installer it asks if I want to install Drum Replacer (and 3 other options), but I already have these installed as part of my Sonar installation. Why doesn't CBB recognise this?

Just like upgrades from the past, the installer does not look for existing plug-ins. 

25 minutes ago, Dr.Gerry said:

When the installer for CBB runs, it says it is going to write to my already existing shared paths eg it wants to install plugins to c:\Program Files\Cakewalk\vst plugins. I fail to see how it can write to this folder without overwriting at least some of my existing plugins? When I ran the installer, Sonar was actually running, and I got a prompt from CBB that it needed to overwrite files that were in use. This is a pretty strong indication that CBB is going to overwrite stuff that Sonar relies on.

ALL Cakewalk DAWs use the same "Shared" folders. 

As I mentioned above these are updated by CbB. They are backward compatible. I have SONAR X2, X3, Platinum and CbB installed. They all run OK.

There are very few VST plug-ins installed with CbB and anything overwritten by CbB will be the same or newer versions of plug-ins that came with Platinum.

For a complete list of the plug-ins included with CbB see http://www.cakewalk.com/Documentation?product=Cakewalk&language=3&help=Plug-ins.1.html

Many of the plug-ins are DX and ProChannel format. These are installed in the "Shared" folder area.

All Cakewalk DAWs must be shut down when performing an upgrade so the shared files can be updated.

25 minutes ago, Dr.Gerry said:

Sorry to sound like such a nervous nellie, but given that Sonar is no longer available, if something messes up my current installation I have no means to rescue or reinstall it. I see scook mentioned that everything would be backward compatible with Sonar, but has anyone really tested this? I would imagine most people install CBB and then just use it rather than Sonar, but I just have this niggling doubt in the back of my mind.....again, sorry to sound like a bit of a wimp.....!

SONAR Platinum is still available in your old Cakewalk Account along with the Cakewalk Command Center to install it.

If you have trouble accessing your old Cakewalk account support@cakewalk.com can reset the account password.

I would recommend you make sure you have access to the old account even though you may not immediately have need for it.

I am pretty sure that everyone who replied to this thread along with many of the forum users have performed the upgrade from some version of SONAR to CbB.

The upgrade follows a decades old pattern of SONAR upgrades. This one just has a slightly different product name.

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Thanks scook. I really appreciate you taking the time to provide such a detailed response. I honestly did not know that I could still get access to my old Cakewalk account and download everything. When CBB came about I thought it was the end of anything connected with Sonar, including being able to download it.

Looks like it's time to take the plunge.

Thanks again for your responses to my questions, they have been much appreciated.

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2 hours ago, Dr.Gerry said:

Looks like it's time to take the plunge

The water's fine Gerry.
Cakewalk (Sonar) is better than ever!

tom

just remember; Do Not uninstall Platinum. Some of your paid VST/VSTi want it to stay on the disc...

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When you get a chance log on to Command Center  and check everything is up to date. Even Platinum. Then for sure make a back up copy of the command centre download folder. It will have all your irreplaceable installers stored there. Also go to your my products page( I think that’s what it is called) and copy paste all you serial numbers to a word document 

kept this safe it’s worth a lot of money and if they ever do shut down the server it will be lost. 
 

just to add I have installed the Bandlab Cakewalk on at least 6 systems that all had old versions installed. Everything still works. 
 

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Thanks everyone for your  advice. I took the plunge today. First thing I did after installing was to fire up Sonar to make sure it worked, and it did! Then I fired by CbB and it worked too! Happy days. As you all seemed to suggest, I probably won't be spending much time in Sonar now.

John Vere, that is extremely good advice, thanks. I'll do that as soon as I finish this.

Seeing as how everyone was so helpful, here's a couple of bits of extra goodness I came across today.

1. There's a great special on at Plugin Boutique at the moment if you like Izotope stuff. You can get an upgrade from any version of Ozone or Neutron standard or advanced to the 'Tonal Balance Bundle', which includes Ozone Advanced, Neutron 3 Advanced and Nectar 3 Plus for $149US (about 190 Australian Bucks). Seeing as how I had a couple of the qualifying products I had to grab this to celebrate the successful installation of CbB. Just to buy Ozone Advanced on it's own would set you back a whole lot more than this. I know some people don't like Izotope's stuff, so apologies if I have offended anyone!

2. If you have never heard of a plugin called GullFoss, head over to www.soundtheory.com and have a look. It's a bit pricey, but it's quite an impressive piece of kit. Seeing as how I bought the Izotope bundle I don't have any money left to buy GullFoss at the moment, so I am looking at selling another one of my kids, or a kidney - only kidding, it's not quite that expensive....an arm or a leg should suffice.

Anyway, thanks again to everyone for your help and advice. Happy New Year to you all, now I'm off to play with my new toys (as soon as I have backed up my Sonar stuff!)

PS I hope I haven't broken any forum rules by mentioning products or vendors above. I have no connection to either company, I just like their stuff, and if you haven't heard of Plugin Boutique before, it really is a good place to buy things. 

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Glad everything has worked out for you. Check out the Deals sub forum  here for news of other bargains. Larry there is hot when it comes to spotting new deals!

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Another fellow 'old timer' here...  Definitely check out the new 'arranger' feature.  I'm sure there's other stuff out there but that one is my favorite.  😉

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