Switching DAWs

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Thinking of moving from Cubase to ProTools (mainly because Steinberg don't seem very keen on supplying me the upgrade I paid for a couple of weeks ago ....)

Anyone made the jump?  Or from any DAW to ProTools ... what was the learning curve like?  Never even touched ProTools so that's the concern ... albeit probably a short term one.
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  • joeyowenjoeyowen Frets: 3409
    I used sonar for years, made the switch to pro tools last summer.

    I love it. 

    Yes I had to Google shortcuts as they came up, but mostly it hasn't been too bad 
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  • Danny1969Danny1969 Frets: 3848
    Protools is probably the easiest to learn out of all of them, only has a mix and an edit screen and the routing works like an analog desk. In the studio I found work experience kids from school could be capable of creating a new session, setting the in \ out and recording a band within their first few days of using it for the first time. 

    www.2020studios.co.uk 
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  • BezzerBezzer Frets: 244
    Thanks guys, good to know. Think it’s time to move! 
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  • FunkfingersFunkfingers Frets: 4515
    Bezzer said:
    Thinking of moving from Cubase to ProTools (mainly because Steinberg don't seem very keen on supplying me the upgrade I paid for a couple of weeks ago ....)
    It ought to be worth chasing Steinberg up about this. If you have subscribed and registered correctly, you should get what you have paid for.

    If Steinberg has what they consider to be good grounds for declining to supply, request a refund of your most recent payment. (If, for example, you have installed their software in to more than one computer, that may breach the terms and conditions of your user license.)
    Be seeing you.
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  • You might also want to give Reaper a quick look if you are considering the jump to PT.
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  • FretwiredFretwired Frets: 20171
    Bezzer said:
    Thinking of moving from Cubase to ProTools (mainly because Steinberg don't seem very keen on supplying me the upgrade I paid for a couple of weeks ago ....)


    If you paid for it online you just download it from your account ...
    Frexited
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  • spark240spark240 Frets: 1133
    edited January 10
    I would also demo Studio One ...some have made the move from PT to S1 and don't look back


    Mac Mini i7, 2.3Ghz.
    Presonus Studio One Pro.
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  • andy_kandy_k Frets: 41
    try the free version first, it wouldnt be my first choice--depends on how you want to work with it, I took pro-tools 101, and it seems fairly simple at first-depending on your background, but relies heavily on memorizing shortcuts for everything,, they all do to some extent, but I chose to go with Reaper, which just seems to do everything I need, and when I open one of my older pro-tools sessions ( which are latest version ) I know I made the right decision--same feeling when I open a Logic session.
    Reaper is free to try fully unrestricted, pro-tools le is very limited, but does give you an idea how it works.
    horses for courses really.
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  • BezzerBezzer Frets: 244
    Bezzer said:
    Thinking of moving from Cubase to ProTools (mainly because Steinberg don't seem very keen on supplying me the upgrade I paid for a couple of weeks ago ....)
    It ought to be worth chasing Steinberg up about this. If you have subscribed and registered correctly, you should get what you have paid for.

    If Steinberg has what they consider to be good grounds for declining to supply, request a refund of your most recent payment. (If, for example, you have installed their software in to more than one computer, that may breach the terms and conditions of your user license.)
    No reason to decline. I paid for the upgrade to Artist 10. This needed an elicenser so no download under my account until authentication code entered. I’m two weeks on from them debiting my account and they haven’t sent confirmation, let alone the code, also had no response to support tickets. Only got them to talk to me by raising it on Twitter .,, and now they’ve gone quiet again. 

    So yeah, chased multiple times. Given plenty of opportunity to resolve but they don’t seem to be interested.
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  • BezzerBezzer Frets: 244

    Fretwired said:
    Bezzer said:
    Thinking of moving from Cubase to ProTools (mainly because Steinberg don't seem very keen on supplying me the upgrade I paid for a couple of weeks ago ....)


    If you paid for it online you just download it from your account ...
    oh if only it were that easy :-) 
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  • octatonicoctatonic Frets: 21329
    I have to own and use most of the major DAW’s.
    If you are doing a lot of midi then you will find PT basic compared to Cuba’s (or pretty much anything else).

    What types of music are you doing?
    Is it predominantly live recording or band tracking, or are you working mostly alone with VI’s.

    Are you Mac or PC?

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  • BezzerBezzer Frets: 244
    edited January 11
    @octatonic mostly live recording. I do use midi for drums and some additional instruments so will be on every track. What do you mean by basic? 

    Oh and PC.
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  • octatonicoctatonic Frets: 21329
    Bezzer said:
    @octatonic mostly live recording. I do use midi for drums and some additional instruments so will be on every track. What do you mean by basic? 

    Oh and PC.
    You don't have a lot of the more advanced midi functionality that you get with Logic or with Cubase.
    There is no drum editor, if you use that in Cubase (many do).

    The way Avid (and previously Digidesign) added midi was really clunky- it wasn't efficient (still isn't) and in order to do things that other DAW's do quite easily you have to work around the architecture.
    For instance, looping regions/clips PT is a complete pain in the ass.
    In most DAW's you just click the end of the loop and drag it to make copies.
    In Pro Tools you need to remember the key command for 'Clip Looping' (Command Option L on Mac, Control Alt L on PC) and then input loops you want, or to set another end point, such as until the next clip, or end of the session.
    It is clunky and cumbersome compared to other DAW's.
    This is just one example- there are loads of them.

    Pro Tools also has some rather arbitrary limitations unless you are going for HDX, which I assume you are not.
    As a native solution you will be limited to 32 simultaneous inputs, so if you have a 64 channel interface PT will only let you use 32 of them.

    I need to have Pro Tools HDX and it is great at what it does.
    If I was suggesting a do-it-all DAW then it would be Cubase or Logic, no question.

    Most people I work with (and myself) tend to sequence in another application (I use Logic and Live mostly) and then transport everything into PT to mix.

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  • StuckfastStuckfast Frets: 542
    I've worked with most of the major DAWs too, but Pro Tools is the one I use most of the time. Like octatonic says, it's not going to be the first choice for doing big MIDI film score mockups with a virtual orchestra or something, but the MIDI is absolutely fine for everyday use. What does take a bit of getting used to in PT compared with other DAWs is that nothing is preconfigured, and unless you start with a template session, you have to set your own routing up. I have got to like the flexibility that offers but it can seem like more work to start with.

    There are aspects of PT that are noticeably different from most other DAWs (soloing will do your head in at first). I much much prefer the way editing in the Edit window works, and once you've got used to how things like Edit and Mix Groups work in PT it's hard to go back to other approaches. Perversely I also love the fact that the keyboard shortcuts are not customisable. This means they are sensible and logical in a way that Cubase ones never quite are. For instance there's a global convention in Pro Tools that holding down the Alt key applies an action to all tracks, while holding Shift + Alt applies it to all selected tracks, and Shift + Alt + Command/Ctrl takes that further depending on the context. For me, the consistency of conventions like that is far more valuable than the freedom to say 'Actually I'd like Shift + Alt + C to do *this*'.

    Of the other Windows DAWs... Studio One is actually very similar to Cubase in many ways, which is not surprising as it was designed by the same people. Cakewalk has the advantage of being free, and, er, it's free. Reaper is immensely flexible but I find it quite counter-intuitive. I'm sure once you get to know it it's incredibly powerful -- certainly the DAW to learn if you are ever likely to do immersive audio and Ambisonics. Samplitude is great, if a bit intimidating in a heavyweight German engineering sort of a way.




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  • BezzerBezzer Frets: 244
    Lots of good info, thanks guys ... certainly food for thought.

    Steinberg have now (finally) come through.  Still don't seem to know what emails are but have DM'd me the activation code on Twitter so I guess demanding a refund now is moot.

    I think I will investigate a few other DAWs though based on the things you'd all said about strengths and weaknesses, always handy to have options.
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  • octatonicoctatonic Frets: 21329
    Reaper is a no-brainer as it is virtually free.
    Start with that.

    Pro Tools is expensive to get in and they ransom you with yearly 'support payments.
    I spend $400 a year just to have Pro Tools Ultimate license stay current- it is a massive ball ache and frankly I really dislike Avid's business model.


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  • SnapSnap Frets: 2795

    @Bezzer - before you buy anything, go have a look at Cakewalk by Bandlab. I have used Sonar/Cakewalk since about 96, and bought the very last version of Sonar Platinum with lifetime upgrades, only to fins a year or two later it is now free. Great.

    The new free version is the same as Platinum, but you don't get all of the third party bundled VSTs e.g. melodyne. What you do get is a pro grade DAW, with the same level of functionality as the previous paid for flagship version. Its pretty intuitive to use too. Cakewalk's in house VSTs are very good too.

    the only drawback I find with Sonar is that it can be glitchy. I don't know what the bandlab version is like though in this respect. I am not far off doing a totally fresh install, so I will find out soon...…

    I debated long time about changing DAW, but I am a hobbyist with precious little time to learn a new one. IMO it would be a waste of time and money.


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  • BezzerBezzer Frets: 244
    @snap that's interesting too, will add it to the list.  I haven't used Cakewalk since the mid 90s and had kind of forgotten it even existed!
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  • octatonic said:
    Reaper is a no-brainer as it is virtually free.
    Start with that.

    Pro Tools is expensive to get in and they ransom you with yearly 'support payments.
    I spend $400 a year just to have Pro Tools Ultimate license stay current- it is a massive ball ache and frankly I really dislike Avid's business model.

    Yeah.... I mean if people care in 2019 about the words "industry standard" and want to pay $400 a year just so Avid respond to their emails then thats ok but wtf

    Maybe 15 years ago when there really wasn't a viable alternative out there but ffs Reaper can do anything ProTools can in a large studio and in a small home environment where midi is usually important, ProTools gets whipped by pretty much every single other DAW out there

    INDUSTRY STANDARD!!! I wonder how much of that $400 a year actually goes into advertising and bungs to magazines to keep repeating that mantra
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  • domforrdomforr Frets: 181
    Personally, I far prefer Reaper to PT's. I used pro tools for many years and eventually gave it up in frustration at its instability and expense.  Reaper covers all the same ground but is simpler to use, much cheaper and (for me) far more stable.

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  • domforrdomforr Frets: 181
    The only caveat I would add o that is that the editing facility in PT's is better and more intuitive,
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  • icu81b4icu81b4 Frets: 13
    I have been using Sonar Platinum for years and like Snap I have just changed to the free version from Bandlab - I withheld because I was in the middle of a project and didn't want any problems - however the change was very simple and works a treat. 
    I also have Studio One (Which I bought when I thought Sonar was going under) but prefer Cakewalk. 
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  • octatonicoctatonic Frets: 21329
    edited January 11
    octatonic said:
    Reaper is a no-brainer as it is virtually free.
    Start with that.

    Pro Tools is expensive to get in and they ransom you with yearly 'support payments.
    I spend $400 a year just to have Pro Tools Ultimate license stay current- it is a massive ball ache and frankly I really dislike Avid's business model.

    Yeah.... I mean if people care in 2019 about the words "industry standard" and want to pay $400 a year just so Avid respond to their emails then thats ok but wtf

    Maybe 15 years ago when there really wasn't a viable alternative out there but ffs Reaper can do anything ProTools can in a large studio and in a small home environment where midi is usually important, ProTools gets whipped by pretty much every single other DAW out there

    INDUSTRY STANDARD!!! I wonder how much of that $400 a year actually goes into advertising and bungs to magazines to keep repeating that mantra
    Maybe for hobbyists, but professionals have to have Pro Tools.

    Anyone working professionally in audio needs to be able to open a Pro Tools session and export, even if they use another DAW.
    If I didn't have it then I'd get a lot less work.

    PT still has some features that you don't get in other DAW's and it almost completely owns audio post.
    Try doing ATMOS in Reaper.

    I don't particularly like it- I much prefer Logic, Live and Sequoia but I rarely get given Logic and Live sessions and I've never had anyone deliver me a Sequoia session.

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  • octatonic said:
    octatonic said:
    Reaper is a no-brainer as it is virtually free.
    Start with that.

    Pro Tools is expensive to get in and they ransom you with yearly 'support payments.
    I spend $400 a year just to have Pro Tools Ultimate license stay current- it is a massive ball ache and frankly I really dislike Avid's business model.

    Yeah.... I mean if people care in 2019 about the words "industry standard" and want to pay $400 a year just so Avid respond to their emails then thats ok but wtf

    Maybe 15 years ago when there really wasn't a viable alternative out there but ffs Reaper can do anything ProTools can in a large studio and in a small home environment where midi is usually important, ProTools gets whipped by pretty much every single other DAW out there

    INDUSTRY STANDARD!!! I wonder how much of that $400 a year actually goes into advertising and bungs to magazines to keep repeating that mantra
    Maybe for hobbyists, but professionals have to have Pro Tools.

    Anyone working professionally in audio needs to be able to open a Pro Tools session and export, even if they use another DAW.
    If I didn't have it then I'd get a lot less work.

    PT still has some features that you don't get in other DAW's and it almost completely owns audio post.
    Try doing ATMOS in Reaper.

    I don't particularly like it- I much prefer Logic, Live and Sequoia but I rarely get given Logic and Live sessions and I've never had anyone deliver me a Sequoia session.
    Yeah you need to be able to open ProTools because everyone has it because its "Industry Standard" that was kinda my point. Its no longer because its the only option.

    Reaper isn't able to mix Atmos because Dolby havent bothered to get round to providing support for it yet (although Im pretty sure I heard it was meant to be coming in 2019). Out with mixing for films where are the benefits for most studios?

    Im sorry if I'm a bit grrrr on ProTools but ive had an irrational hatred of the DAW for a very long time and I also think its a complete con by this point and Ive had nothing but bad experiences and 2nd rate support from Avid. 

    I mean, by 2019 would it freakin kill them to include a decent drum editor? 


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  • octatonicoctatonic Frets: 21329
    Yeah you need to be able to open ProTools because everyone has it because its "Industry Standard" that was kinda my point. Its no longer because its the only option.

    Reaper isn't able to mix Atmos because Dolby havent bothered to get round to providing support for it yet (although Im pretty sure I heard it was meant to be coming in 2019). Out with mixing for films where are the benefits for most studios?

    Im sorry if I'm a bit grrrr on ProTools but ive had an irrational hatred of the DAW for a very long time and I also think its a complete con by this point and Ive had nothing but bad experiences and 2nd rate support from Avid. 

    I mean, by 2019 would it freakin kill them to include a decent drum editor? 

    It isn't just because everyone has it, it is because most projects begin and end in it in professional circles.
    In the US it is the only game in town for mixing.
    In Europe you get a few more people using Logic, Nuendo, Cubase but it is still pretty all consuming.

    Show me a better way to do multitrack drum edits than with Beat Detective?

    I agree that the lack of a drum editor is an irritant, but it isn't the only DAW to lack one.

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  • joeyowenjoeyowen Frets: 3409
    Am I missing something in regards to the drum editor

    Most place use 3rd part anyway, so why does pro tools need one?

    (Honestly, I might be missing what you mean)
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  • octatonicoctatonic Frets: 21329
    joeyowen said:
    Am I missing something in regards to the drum editor

    Most place use 3rd part anyway, so why does pro tools need one?

    (Honestly, I might be missing what you mean)
    You are right, to a degree.

    But if you started in Cubase it is a feature that you get used to and when you switch to a different DAW you will notice it missing.
    Logic doesn't have a drum editor either, fwiw.

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  • andy_kandy_k Frets: 41
    I'm half way through my final year of a Uni degree, and that was my introduction to PT, course was split 50-50 between Logic for composition and PT for recording. Industry standard was and is the mantra for PT, but for the home user, its a big spend, compared to £150 for Logic (then)
    Uni standard for music production is based around Mac, which again used to be 'industry standard' and it started to bug me a few years back when Apple ramped up prices of Macbook pros and removed the ability to upgrade.
    I then had the realisation that to be able to be working, I couldn't rely on one machine, platform or DAW, they all have their own limitations and bugs, ever wanted to get something done and had to wait for a windows update ?, or been nagged by Apple to perform an OS update--well before all your software is compatible? ( PT is STILL not fully comp with latest Apple OS, at least if you consider your DAW includes ALL your plugins-SLATE etc.)
    Before I started my final year I decided to try Reaper, as it is cross platform, and unlimited in its demo form, and by the end of the same day had paid my license fee, it simple does everything I want in a DAW, admittedly, I'm not working on any Hollywood scores, or mixing for a top 10 act, at the moment, but I challenge anyone to try opening a PT session, and time it, then compare that to opening a Reaper session, or even try doing a PT update, including Ilok manager, usually a couple of Gigs, Vs Reapers 17 MEG DL, and 65 MEG install.
    if time is money--PT is EXPENSIVE, Logic is cheap, Reaper is FREE, and then when you hit a problem with PT, or Logic, try and find the answer quickly, with Reaper, just watch Kenny's vids, if he hasn't already answered it-there is always the public forum.
    Cakewalk is another one Itried, as it is free, but again, it is no longer supported, so I doubt it will work on Mac, nothing to lose by trying it-for free, but the biggest investment at the end of the day, is TIME, I wouldn't waste my time, these days, trying to become a Pro-tools Ninja, unless I was being paid to use it.

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  • Danny1969Danny1969 Frets: 3848

    To be fair when it comes to editing real drums I would use Protools over anything. I've kind of got used to the midi in PT as well and I'm pretty quick at looping regions and such. 

    Previous bits of hardware and older versions of PT are considered obsolete now and as far as working professionally with others go they may well be. But if you only need to work on your own then there are insane bargains out there. My current rig is a 2007 iMac and an Mbox Pro that came with PT LE 8 . Total cost less than £100 .....
    www.2020studios.co.uk 
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  • andy_kandy_k Frets: 41
    Danny1969 said:

    To be fair when it comes to editing real drums I would use Protools over anything. I've kind of got used to the midi in PT as well and I'm pretty quick at looping regions and such. 

    Previous bits of hardware and older versions of PT are considered obsolete now and as far as working professionally with others go they may well be. But if you only need to work on your own then there are insane bargains out there. My current rig is a 2007 iMac and an Mbox Pro that came with PT LE 8 . Total cost less than £100 .....
    I tried setting up an Mbox2 on a pc, with full versions of PT8, couldnt even get the lights to work--not worth the effort, unless you want to maintain a museum of musical hardware--PT is now making a lot of its fairly recent harware obsolete in a similar fashion, 11 rack is being sold off cheap, and some of the older control surfaces are no longer supported.
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