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It's official: CbB will not continue for long.

John Vere

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4 hours ago, Milton Sica said:

Because I think it's a huge mistake in the company's strategy to go for a free-pay movement and an application that, we know, has numerous bugs. The question is quite simple and direct: who will pay for a tire that, at any moment, will present a puncture ????

The least one would expect is that the application delivers everything it promises without errors.

While it was presented as FREE, we users noticed some bugs, but I don't know of any that pay any dollar to receive errors.


3 hours ago, T Boog said:

My biggest issue with Cakewalk has been all the bugs and problems with third party vst's working right. I do understand that developers need to make money but I'm not willing to pay very much for the new Sonar. I'd go maybe $79 but more than that, I'd rather just buy a new DAW. Even if it has less features, as long it's more stable with less problems. With Cakewalk, I'm constantly having to chase down problems and find workarounds. It 's been exhausting.


I got news for ya there, Sparky. All software has bugs.

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1 hour ago, Will. said:

Management said its not a beta 🤷🏻‍♂️

Because it is not. But it is a question of terminology. In software development, a beta release is usually restricted to a few individuals that have been chosen by the dev team from applications and you need to sign a non disclosure agreement. Betas are normaly private, but lately I have seen companies making public betas open to everyone. But that is a newer trend.

I am a software developer and I have participated in a few beta programs for plugins and other software, including software dev tools.

What the latest Cakewalk release is is an early access release. This means that the closed beta has occured and this last step is to get more people trying it out before and finding any bug that might have slipped the beta testers.

Like I said, it's a question of software development terminology.

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I use a lot of different DAWs. They all have bugs. Windows has bugs. MacOS has bugs. More complex programs have more bugs than simpler programs. 

Books have typos. Movies have continuity problems. Doctors misdiagnose. NASA lost the Mars Climate Orbiter in 1999 because of a miscalculation translating between metric and imperial units of measurement. And I wouldn't get into a self-driving Tesla, if you know what I mean. 

Although a lot of people claim to have come up with the phrase "the grass is always greener where you water it," the phrase originated with Robert Fulghum:

“The grass is not, in fact, always greener on the other side of the fence. No, not at all. Fences have nothing to do with it. The grass is greenest where it is watered. When crossing over fences, carry water with you and tend the grass wherever you may be.”

I don't have problems with DAWs because I live within their limitations, which all DAWs have. There will never be a perfect DAW, so the goal is to work with the one that best fits your needs.

But also remember the words of Erma Bombeck: "The grass is always greener over the septic tank."


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8 hours ago, Jacques Boileau said:

What the latest Cakewalk release is is an early access release. This means that the closed beta has occured and this last step is to get more people trying it out before and finding any bug that might have slipped the beta testers.

Yeah, this. ^^

The dev team is small but would have automated tools for testing regressions, etc. as well as them being experienced and doing their own manual testing as well.

Then the beta team gets it to try on their various different kinds of hardware and their own workflows, usually as part of their regular use of the software. I have no idea how big the team is, but there's no way they could pre-empt the literally thousands of combinations of hardware, software installed, driver versions, different ways of doing things, etc. that the wider userbase could come across, which is why there's the Early Access program.

There will ALWAYS be bugs in complicated software like this, no matter how good the devs are, no matter how on the ball the beta team is. If this was a small or very closed ecosystem, you might have a better chance of it being lessened but even looking at Apple for example, with a very locked down ecosystem and a far smaller market share than the PC market, just looking at Logic Pro as a single random example, why is that at version 10.7.9 instead of just "new version 10?" - bug fixes and feature updates. Just like CbB has, and Sonar will have.

The other thing to keep in mind is everyone's experience is unique too.

I see some of the "this is unstable, what are the devs doing?!" posts and go "well I'm not seeing that" and once we dig in it turns out it's a software environment thing, or a rogue plugin, etc. and yes - in some cases, since ALL software has bugs - someone's done something in their own workflow that has uncovered a Cakewalk bug that gets put into the system to be addressed when they can. I'm personally not going to see something in, say, Matrix View because I'm not a heavy user of it, whereas someone who lives in that part of the app would have a much greater chance of coming across any bugs.

I agree with Craig, I've used a lot of software and for me CbB is among some of the most stable and "bug free" software I've used - for MY combination of hardware, software and workflow.

If anyone is seeing anything differently, it's absolutely your call if you want to angrily upturn a table and go to other software (and it's not a religion - you know you can use multiple DAWs or NLEs or whatever, right?), but if you enjoy working in Cakewalk and the workflow works for you, then working out the issue by showing repeatable steps to diagnose the problem to either discover the cause of this problem or have it uncover a legitimate bug that can be reported to the Bakers is something that we will all benefit from.

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My bigger concern is folks who onboarded during CbB are "eventually" going to be put in a position where their work gets held hostage. Not going to comment further, but anyone who was here a decade ago will remember those discussions on the old forums, participants, and what was said.

Not everyone uses software at such frequency that they are always in the loop to what is going on in the background.

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11 minutes ago, mettelus said:

Not everyone uses software at such frequency that they are always in the loop to what is going on in the background.

But everyone does have a Bandlab-linked account due to the activation requirement, and there is in-app messaging as well, so even if people don't spend their lives here like some of us (I really need to get out more 😒) then I very much doubt they'll be left in the dark. Even if you want to be cynical about it, if this is all moving to being a commercial product, they'll want to make sure it sells, right? Having an existing customer base already contactable directly is a good way to market it, and let people know what's happening so they can make their own choice about what they want to do.

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53 minutes ago, Byron Dickens said:

got news for ya there, Sparky. All software has bugs

Cheers Byron. I knew they all had bugs, I was just hoping that a somewhat simpler DAW(well designed of course) might have LESS bugs.

Btw, I like Cakewalk's workflow & features but to Noel's point about why not just buy it if u use it alot, After my current project, I don't know if I wanna keep using it a lot.

 To be honest, I'm kinda down on DAW recording in general right now. Its turned out to be way more problem packed then I ever expected. The constant problem solving is frying my brain. After this project, I def need a long break from it. 🍻


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11 hours ago, Noel Borthwick said:

The reactivation requirement is for multiple reasons - Cbb/Sonar/Next are all connected apps that integrate with the BandLab ecosystem. There are often backend changes, that require cached state to be refreshed to work properly, not very different from the reason digital certificates and cookies expire. Additionally, these changes require us to change the application to continue to work properly, which is why we occasionally need to do updates that in turn refresh activation. The other reason is to ensure that for support purposes we have users running on the latest versions.


Reactivate is one thing - if it works flawlessly!!!


Three years ago running CbB started to remind me to reactivate.

- nothing happend it continued to remind me

- I was at Bandlab app and pressed some button, but no confirmation or new expire date or anything

- I posted here on forum, and it just fell down the pages, not help at all to fix it

So with the risk of it just stops working, I uninstalled CbB and went back to good old Sonar Artist 2015.

Just a few projects using surround busses that did not work, otherwise went fine after a true total rescan plugins.


So this flaky activation system really puts me off!

- one thing with a free product

- another if for something you paid for, then you want no reactivation on that pc, you paid for perpetual license


And I don't follow the reasoning about integrating with Bandlab either

- so you need to reactivate every 6 months

- which will be different date depending on when installed and similar for each install


I think Cakewalk/Roland/Gibson days worked just fine with challenge response and listed in account.


And second concern of mine is how many versions of Sonar

- a single with all content you pay for whether of interest or not


I have everything I need 3rd party, and would be great

- at least separate installer for content, like StudioOne did as I recall

- best if two levels products Sonar Suite with everything included, or just Sonar.

I don't mind paying good money for a daw that is maintained, but pay for content that is of no interest is another thing.


The only issues I have with Sonar Artist 2015

- the soloing of a bus and a track, something funny is going on there make all go silent

- solo override does not work as in other daws, to set and forget(reported)

- something strange happend using Measure at beat-something, with content down the timeline(reported)

- mute previous take did not work in loop recording, if content on track before(reported)

- starting Sonar I get HeapLeakDetection entry in registry and have to turn off compatibility assistant or windows start interfere adding memory to requested from process and similar

- to again get surround busses would be great in a new Sonar


Looking through 64 pages of release notes, I think my reported bugs might be taken care of.


Cons with CbB

- prochannel I have to see to that all is disabled on every track I create, or I was having issues suddenly something was active there

- I think there was some setting to instead have the legacy eq stuff and no pc interfering

- and online manual is useless, I used the old chm-file for Sonar instead


But paid product that needs online reactivations is a turn off, once for registration is enough.

- I'm never online other than shortly to do windows updates

Edited by Larioso
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2 hours ago, Larioso said:

- best if two levels products Sonar Suite with everything included, or just Sonar.

That is something I was thinking for quite a while now. Why doesn't anybody  do a version of their DAW that is just the recording, editing and vst support part of it? And concentrate on having these well designed and implemented. Just the DAW part, no stock plugins.

The plugin market is now full of very good free or very cheap plugins. If a version of a DAW without plugins could be had as a lower priced tier, that could be enticing for many who already have their plugin arsenal.

Edited by Jacques Boileau
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I get a kick out of people who are given a DAW for free that on the market right now would have been $400-$??  ( go look at the prices of  competing  DAW's ) and then start complaining 'cuase the company has been working hard to make it as good as possible, is now ready to sell it,  And.. at a reasonable price point yet!  

Reading this thread I see, thank goodness, most people "get it". The complainers are the people who think a bug is when things don't work right in the software. I've read a lot of those threads here like that and it seems to me it is almost 99% user error because they haven't taken the time to actually learn about the software.  Seems the people who do learn about the software  never complain and never have to ask dumb questions, and they also don't scream "bug" all the time.  

I've had to learn how to use a few new programs over the last few years, Cakewalk included, and there is endless help including both documents, videos and this forum. It is a slow process to get up to speed especially with complicated software. I don't know 10% of what Microsoft Word can do but I've used it almost everyday for 30? years.  

The information the Boss has shared with us in the OP and mid thread,  is very good news and I'm personally looking forward to seeing what Next or Sonar will be like. Sign me up. I like what someone said about we spend a lot on money on plug ins why not the DAW--Hmm, I haven't actually spent much money on plug ins so paying for a DAW is well with in my small budget. That's what Gig money is for.  

Edited by Bass Guitar
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If you read all that cakewalk has put out  here and on-site it seems that CbB is going to eventually wither into obsolescence since it won’t get updated.  Window will eventually break it.  Two of my favorite synths died this slow death - Komplexer and one that went Mac only.

this makes sense if you are selling software.  Don’t kill the golden goose but don’t unnecessarily ***** your base.  After 6 months or a year CbB will be phased out (see the link below and read staff’s remarks).  No more freeloading of their top line software.  You’ll have to decide on Sonar, Next, Bandlab or some other company’ Daw.


Hopefully there will be a cheaper standard Sonar and one with cakewalk synths and effects.  By now Bandlab Co has a good idea of expenses for keeping Sonar (and Next!) updated.  Hopefully the vanilla version of Cakewalk with come in from  a hundred dollars to 2 hundred and keeps the flow of newbies from Bandlab entering their paid world.  

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Gee, I had a gig yesterday so didn't see this until this morning. Thanks to all of you who think this was "Good News" to the rest of you , you really need to step back and look at what you are saying. Which boils down to " I don't like this software so I'm not buying"  Fine I'm sure there are other free DAW's still out there like Audacity, go for it. 

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14 minutes ago, Alan Tubbs said:

If you read all that cakewalk has put out  here and on-site it seems that CbB is going to eventually wither into obsolescence since it won’t get updated. 

Another thread about the early access "top tracks no visible" or something was a bit worrying.

- they are just to consolidate CbB and yet to manage introducing new bugs that were substantial


This tells devs are very stressed up right now

- consolidate CbB

- update to new Sonar

- completely new daw Next


and Noel also revealed "we are working on the gui on new Sonar", something to that meaning with a little "soon" in there a couple of times.


It seems they are in over their heads, I'm afraid.


If they at least drip fed community with some more info, I think they can wait until done and ready, and not too early access.

- if not prices yet, at least how divided into a couple of versions, if that is the case

- how will authorization work

- chm help file for offline help

- sure there are other things that can be revealed wished by other people

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