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Old 05-09-2007, 10:22 AM   #1
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Opinions on music software

I am looking for some advice from those who have experience with some of the different music software that is available. The only programs I have any experience with are Propellerhead's Reason v1.0 Cubase VST4.

I play guitar, bass, and can work with a keyboard to some degree. I own a drum kit, but don't have the time to invest in working on that skill. So what I really need is software with some nice drumming capabilities. I've heard mention of a few programs including FL Studio, Reason, and Drum Kit From Hell. I've heard some examples of the mentioned three, but I can't assume that all I've heard is all that they are capable of, nor do I know how the programs work exactly (easy to use, very technical, etc...).

I suppose I should add that I'd like to spend around $300 or less.

I'd appreciate any advice any of you can offer. Thanks!
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Old 05-09-2007, 11:12 AM   #2
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Re: Opinions on music software

Drumkit From Hell works as a virtual instrument, so you'd need a program that can host VSTi plugins. DFH is essentially a cohesive sample library, but you still need a sampler to use it. You could use Fruity Loops to program drums (there's a shitload of free drum samples out there), or you could use DFH inside Fruity Loops. I would recommend trying Fruity Loops by itself first. ***, there's no reason to use Reason as Fruity Loops does everything Reason can do, plus a lot more.
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Old 05-09-2007, 01:44 PM   #3
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Re: Opinions on music software

I would disagree with the fruity loops suggestion.

I would say use a vsti sampler with MIDI functions and record your riffs to tempos and what not. The problem with using fruity loops and preprogramming your drums is that you cannot change things as you go unless you reopen the program and re-import the files.

With MIDI you can change as you go, record guitars first then put drums or vice versa.

You could download LoopAZoid for free as a drum sampler, that's what I use. Or you could get a good program and use DFH. I have only used Cubase LE but it works just fine for me.
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Old 05-09-2007, 06:02 PM   #4
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Re: Opinions on music software

Cliche:
I'm gonna download LoopAZoid to give it a look.

Elevate:
Fruity Loops' price is a hell of a lot better than Reason's, but what little familiarity I have with Reason pulls me in it's direction. Is Fruity Loops an easy program to learn?

From what I've read DFH's newest release is pretty awesome, I just didn't know how to use it. I didn't think it was a standalone program, but I wasn't sure. Thanks for clearing that up for me.

Thank you both for your advice. I may end up using both, as FL Studio has some pretty cheap versions I'd be willing to pay for to try out.
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Old 05-09-2007, 06:42 PM   #5
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Re: Opinions on music software

there are some great free samples here.
http://meanbeat.cjb.net/

also with loopazoid utilize the 4 stereo outputs for effects processing.
Example,,, compress reverb the snare if necessary etc.
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Old 05-10-2007, 02:55 AM   #6
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Re: Opinions on music software

If you're recording the guitar, bass, vocals, etc live, you'll want a program that can handle the audio well. Get Reaper, the personal use edition is $39 and is more stable than any of the other programs out there. Cheap, cheerful, functional, and comes with really well-designed basic plug-ins. If I did my studio shopping a couple of years later, I definitely would have built it around reaper and saved tons of money for good outboard equipment.
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Old 05-10-2007, 07:42 AM   #7
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Re: Opinions on music software

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Originally Posted by cliche101 View Post
I would say use a vsti sampler with MIDI functions and record your riffs to tempos and what not. The problem with using fruity loops and preprogramming your drums is that you cannot change things as you go unless you reopen the program and re-import the files.
This isn't true. For one, you can now record and mix multitrack audio in Fruity Loops. Also, Fruity Loops can be loaded as a VSTi into any other program that can host VSTi plugins. Even if you disregard these two options, you would never have to "re-import" audio files, as they update automagically (I do this with Vegas).
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Old 05-10-2007, 07:46 AM   #8
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Re: Opinions on music software

Quote:
Originally Posted by slyraje View Post
Elevate:
Fruity Loops' price is a hell of a lot better than Reason's, but what little familiarity I have with Reason pulls me in it's direction. Is Fruity Loops an easy program to learn?
IM0, Fruity Loops is incredibly easy to learn; easier than Reason (to me, at least). As I said, Fruity Loops can do everything Reason can, and a shitload more. Reason is better looking and doesn't have a stupid name, but you're pretty much locked in to its out of the box functionality. Out of the box, Fruity Loops can do more than Reason, plus you have option of greatly extending Fruity Loops abilities with the use of 3rd party plugins - effects, samplers, softsynths, etc...
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Old 05-10-2007, 08:03 AM   #9
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Re: Opinions on music software

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Originally Posted by holotrope View Post
If you're recording the guitar, bass, vocals, etc live, you'll want a program that can handle the audio well.
Handling audio "well" is pretty much a baseline prerequisite for any audio application. Anything non-beta and/or commercial-grade is going to handle audio fine. Among multitrack audio sequencers, they all have nearly identical core feature sets. Reaper does represent an excellent value, but it isn't some audio panacea. The interface is kinda clumsy compared to apps like Acid, Vegas, and Sonar. It's also missing some pretty core features, or at least I've never come across them - specifically aux buses and fx buses. I suppose you can get part way there with the mixing matrix, but it's a less than ideal solution, IM0.
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Old 05-10-2007, 08:40 AM   #10
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Re: Opinions on music software

Quote:
Originally Posted by elevate View Post
This isn't true. For one, you can now record and mix multitrack audio in Fruity Loops. Also, Fruity Loops can be loaded as a VSTi into any other program that can host VSTi plugins. Even if you disregard these two options, you would never have to "re-import" audio files, as they update automagically (I do this with Vegas).
I guess i haven't been kept up to date with the versions.
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Old 05-10-2007, 03:55 PM   #11
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Re: Opinions on music software

You can achieve pretty much anything with Reason 3 in the way of drum beats. You can load up any sounds to the drum machine and do what you will to them, and you can cut up full beat samples in the loop player however you like.
And then do whatever processing you like to everything.
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Old 05-10-2007, 06:59 PM   #12
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Re: Opinions on music software

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Originally Posted by Apocalypse2moro View Post
You can load up any sounds to the drum machine and do what you will to them, and you can cut up full beat samples in the loop player however you like.
Isn't Reason's drum machine limited to 10 channels?
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Old 05-10-2007, 07:07 PM   #13
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Re: Opinions on music software

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Originally Posted by elevate View Post
Isn't Reason's drum machine limited to 10 channels?
The version of Reason I have does limit the drum machine to 10 channels, but you can add a few more drum machines to the rack without a problem -- each with unique samples for each channel.
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Old 05-11-2007, 12:53 AM   #14
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Re: Opinions on music software

Do newer versions of Fruityloops let you use more than one time signature in a song?
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Old 05-11-2007, 01:43 PM   #15
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Re: Opinions on music software

Not that I'm aware of, though I don't know if it matters. You can make each pattern any number of steps.
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Old 05-12-2007, 01:04 AM   #16
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Re: Opinions on music software

Quote:
Originally Posted by elevate View Post
Handling audio "well" is pretty much a baseline prerequisite for any audio application. Anything non-beta and/or commercial-grade is going to handle audio fine. Among multitrack audio sequencers, they all have nearly identical core feature sets. Reaper does represent an excellent value, but it isn't some audio panacea. The interface is kinda clumsy compared to apps like Acid, Vegas, and Sonar. It's also missing some pretty core features, or at least I've never come across them - specifically aux buses and fx buses. I suppose you can get part way there with the mixing matrix, but it's a less than ideal solution, IM0.
Lol, Reaper's interface is designed for people who loved Vegas and miss it, it's really user friendly (I especially like that whatever fader/know you have highlighted is adjustable by scroll-wheel). As far as bussing, you've basically got infinite routing on Reaper, so you can do stuff with fx that you could only dream about before! The ideal solution, IM0.
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Old 05-12-2007, 04:21 PM   #17
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Re: Opinions on music software

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Lol, Reaper's interface is designed for people who loved Vegas and miss it
Miss it? It still exists. It also exists in Acid. Reaper looks and feels very little like Vegas. Reminds me more of Sonar....a homemade version of Sonar.

Quote:
As far as bussing, you've basically got infinite routing on Reaper, so you can do stuff with fx that you could only dream about before!
That I could only dream about before? Unlikely.
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Old 05-13-2007, 09:45 AM   #18
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Re: Opinions on music software

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Miss it? It still exists. It also exists in Acid. Reaper looks and feels very little like Vegas. Reminds me more of Sonar....a homemade version of Sonar.


That I could only dream about before? Unlikely.
I meant the old style Sonic Foundry Vegas.

And I didn't mean to question your personal knowledge of fx, it was just my excitement at the possibilities of Reaper's limiteless routing and all the cool bussing it enables. :)
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Old 05-13-2007, 11:00 AM   #19
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Re: Opinions on music software

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Originally Posted by holotrope View Post
I meant the old style Sonic Foundry Vegas.
Which is pretty much identical to the existing version of Vegas - I've been using it since version 1, now using version 6.
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Old 05-14-2007, 01:50 AM   #20
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Re: Opinions on music software

the sound engine isn't as good now that sony bought it, plus reaper is way cheaper. And that last bit rhymes, so that's gotta be worth something.
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Old 05-14-2007, 05:55 AM   #21
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Re: Opinions on music software

Yeah I dont see how the bussing could be improved in Vegas any.
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Old 05-14-2007, 06:46 AM   #22
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Re: Opinions on music software

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the sound engine isn't as good now that sony bought it
I'd like to know how Sony has made it 'less good'.
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Old 05-14-2007, 02:07 PM   #23
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Re: Opinions on music software

bah, this is just going to go back and forth forever.

Reaper is good and cheap, I haven't used the latest versions of Sony Vegas, so I'm sure there are things I don't know about it, but that doesn't change the fact that Reaper is good and cheap.
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Old 05-14-2007, 05:12 PM   #24
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Re: Opinions on music software

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bah, this is just going to go back and forth forever.
Well, when you make unsubstantiated claims...

Quote:
...but that doesn't change the fact that Reaper is good and cheap.
This was never questioned.
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Old 05-15-2007, 06:46 PM   #25
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Re: Opinions on music software

Last time I used Vegas, it only had linear routing, whereas in Reaper you can do pretty much anything you want, so it's almost like an old analog synth, and you can get some really cool effects going on.

Also, Reaper has a 64-bit floating-point mix engine, and I don't think Vegas does...
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Old 05-16-2007, 08:45 AM   #26
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Re: Opinions on music software

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Last time I used Vegas, it only had linear routing
I think you might not know how Vegas routing works, which is puzzling as it's the easiest routing interface I've used.

I don't know if Vegas' mix engine is 64-bit, and I don't know if I care. It works, and it sounds fine to me. Unless you have absurdly expensive gear and record and mix at 24-bit at 192khz, you're not going to realize any tangible benefits from having the mix engine be 64 bit.
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Old 05-16-2007, 02:10 PM   #27
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Re: Opinions on music software

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Originally Posted by elevate View Post
I think you might not know how Vegas routing works, which is puzzling as it's the easiest routing interface I've used.
Because you haven't used Reaper yet...

Quote:
Originally Posted by elevate View Post
I don't know if Vegas' mix engine is 64-bit, and I don't know if I care. It works, and it sounds fine to me. Unless you have absurdly expensive gear and record and mix at 24-bit at 192khz, you're not going to realize any tangible benefits from having the mix engine be 64 bit.

Crossfades affect a mix recorded at any bitrate, and the weaker the mix engine, the more distortion you'll get from the crossfading. You might not care, but I do.
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Old 05-16-2007, 03:18 PM   #28
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Re: Opinions on music software

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Because you haven't used Reaper yet...
I have. Reaper's routing interface is pretty much a rip-off of Pro-Tools, except the Pro-Tools interface has been placed in a stupid location, and isn't quite as flexible.

Quote:
You might not care, but I do.
I think you're caring about theoretical gains in audio quality that probably don't exist as a practical matter. Unless your source material is all uber-pristine and every component in your audio chain has an insanely low noise floor, it's all pointless. Now, if you're sporting a bunch of Apogee I/O, some Genelec monitors, and an acoustically treated studio space, then yeah, maybe that 64-bit action is actually doing you some good.
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Old 05-17-2007, 01:36 AM   #29
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Re: Opinions on music software

So basically, it seems that I'm criticizing Vegas because I don't know enough about how it works, and you're criticizing Reaper because you don't know enough about how it works, but we've both got a program that works for us. Actually, I've mostly been a ProTools user, but a friend turned me on to Reaper, and I think it's great as a mobile recording program (since it doesn't eat processors for lunch and has really well-designed plug-ins) plus the routing- which I find to be WAY easier to use than in ProTools- is great, and while some like the "ProTools sound" I'm getting a bit sick of it.

My signal chain isn't perfect, but things that aren't perfect can still get worse, and I like to prevent that where I can. Just because we can't notice something, it doesn't mean it makes no difference. Ordinary folk don't notice the same things the best mastering engineers notice, but those engineers still make a huge difference by changing tiny details that nobody else would pick up on.

Conclusion: different strokes for different folks.
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Old 06-20-2007, 05:59 AM   #30
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Re: Opinions on music software

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Originally Posted by slyraje View Post
I am looking for some advice from those who have experience with some of the different music software that is available. The only programs I have any experience with are Propellerhead's Reason v1.0 Cubase VST4.

I play guitar, bass, and can work with a keyboard to some degree. I own a drum kit, but don't have the time to invest in working on that skill. So what I really need is software with some nice drumming capabilities. I've heard mention of a few programs including FL Studio, Reason, and Drum Kit From Hell. I've heard some examples of the mentioned three, but I can't assume that all I've heard is all that they are capable of, nor do I know how the programs work exactly (easy to use, very technical, etc...).

I suppose I should add that I'd like to spend around $300 or less.

I'd appreciate any advice any of you can offer. Thanks!
Do a search for Hammerhead, it's a free drum machine that comes with it's own samples as well as a userbank editor for you to import your own samples. If you recorded some samples of your drumkit, I'm sure you could make your own userbank in no time.

Also, if you're looking for some good music software in general you should go here: hitsquad.com/smm - you'll find that the bulk of it is shareware but you can find some really brilliant freeware programs that in some cases work better than the expensive stuff like Reason and Cubase. I've been using the free stuff from hitsquad since I started making music and I've found that I have a unique compostion environment thanks to it. In my opinion it's better to use a large combination of smaller programs to create music instead of using one or two big programs.
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Old 07-05-2007, 09:24 PM   #31
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Re: Opinions on music software

Quote:
Originally Posted by slyraje View Post
I am looking for some advice from those who have experience with some of the different music software that is available. The only programs I have any experience with are Propellerhead's Reason v1.0 Cubase VST4.

I play guitar, bass, and can work with a keyboard to some degree. I own a drum kit, but don't have the time to invest in working on that skill. So what I really need is software with some nice drumming capabilities. I've heard mention of a few programs including FL Studio, Reason, and Drum Kit From Hell. I've heard some examples of the mentioned three, but I can't assume that all I've heard is all that they are capable of, nor do I know how the programs work exactly (easy to use, very technical, etc...).

I suppose I should add that I'd like to spend around $300 or less.

I'd appreciate any advice any of you can offer. Thanks!

look into this program dna the following vst plugin instruments


Orion Platinum by sonic syndicate

vst plugins

addictive drums-best virtual drum kit ive ever used

real guitar-most realistic accoustic ive toyed with

albino-great for ambient type synth sounds aand soundscapes.

slayer, great electric guitar plugin



for a sample of what i made in ten minutes useing orion,albino and addictive drums goto www.myspace.com/mindash
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Old 12-21-2007, 12:54 PM   #32
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Re: Opinions on music software

i may be considered a bit of a newb when it comes to the software, but i've been playbing bass for 13 years and guitar for about 7 or 8...

anyway, i use my mAudio black box connected via USB to my pc, and i use Mixcraft (v3) to do the recording... nice interface, and some nice features. check it out on your way to your final decision.

though personally, i'm not in it to make loops, i just wanted a solution that would let me get my songs onto my computer without going through an analog 4 track.
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Old 02-19-2008, 04:37 AM   #33
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Re: Opinions on music software

My favourite brand software is Magix. I still don't own the professionnal Samplitude but I use Music Studio deluxe for 5 years and it's really great fro easy recording with pro feature.

I play my VSTi in Tracktion which is really easy to use.
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Old 05-01-2008, 12:08 AM   #34
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Re: Opinions on music software

You can make things extremely complicated in Reason.

Reason is also an amazing program for running a midi keyboard rig live with a laptop. My band www.myspace.com/ehsomusic ;) uses an 61 key Axiom M Audio Usb Midi keyboard with Reason 3.0. I program drum beats using pads on the keyboard and tapping them out. We also are starting to take samples of us playing other instruments such as banjo, french horn and whatever and running them from the NN XT virtual sampler. Not to mention you can run vocal samples through the vocoder and a number of synths. Cuebase and Abelton Live can also do some amazing things but Reason is hardly limiting. The things that we can pull off live with just two people is pretty cool. Its nice being able to have control over drums, muting of alll instruments, playing multiple instruments and everthing all from one keyboard and laptop. You can also split up the keyboard with the combinator and run several sounds at once. I was just surprised how much I can do with this stuff because I basically purchased the keyboard and program with little experience with it. I learn new tricks every day and making music this way can actually become fairly organic and natural feeling. Not to mention you don't have to just use loops, you can build a song to be completely unique the whole way through, its just all about how much you are willing to put into learing the software.

Last edited by theprosperone; 05-01-2008 at 12:12 AM..
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Old 06-13-2008, 02:47 AM   #35
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Re: Opinions on music software

word to Reason. i love it.
u should all try getting into it
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Old 10-06-2008, 11:20 AM   #36
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Re: Opinions on music software

You guys might be interested in LMMS, its basically a Fruity Loops clone, but what is more awesome is that.. its open source and free for use :)

http://lmms.sourceforge.net/

Also more links for the penguins http://www.acoustics.hut.fi/links/software.php
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Old 08-15-2009, 09:30 AM   #37
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Re: Opinions on music software

Before you spend any of your hard earned money give hydrogen drum software a try it's for free and simple enough to use and in my opinion much better than any of these expensive softwares. Better to have a sound editing software like cool edit pro record anything you think sounds cool but could use a little modification, modify it turn it into hydrogen friendly file and add it to a hydrogen drum kit.
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Old 08-15-2009, 10:26 AM   #38
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Re: Opinions on music software

Hydrogen is pretty good, I've recently been using it quite a bit. Its humanization controls kick ass.
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Old 09-06-2009, 10:25 AM   #39
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HELP

I require help.
It would take me several weeks, if not months,
to conduct proper research.
I hope to shorten that time into a few days.

I require:

A. Minimum 3-octave keyboard, capable of the MOOG stuff, synth, especially Bass Guitar/Bass Organ reproduction, AND the full spectrum of audio reproduction manipulation, from 20 hz to 22,000 hz, in superior High Fidelity: which I may use to produce music in a PC enviroment,
preferably with 32 bit Windows XP.

B. Studio Monitor speakers, plus a sub bass reproduction device

C. The mandala drum pad, for ALL my percussion needs: can it do the job, or must I purchase a Roland Drum set?! Again: must be SUPERIOR in Quality sound.

D. Finally: I need a professional Analog/Digital Conversion AND Digital/Digital interface TO a

E. SOUNDCARD of superior design

and

F. Studio recording Software.


So,
the best way for me to recieve and digest input,
is for replies to be marked with

A
B
C
D
E
F


:)

Thank You in advance.

(I am not partial to Pro Tools, particularly, though if it is the 'best for the money', then it is acceptable.)

Should I consider a MaC?
I hate the non-hands-on-lack-of-self-upgradability of MAC systems....
I bought my PC in 2004, and with minor upgrades, now have a system with 500GB storage,
can run all modern video games in HD, etc...
whats the point of a MAC?

I grew up with APPLE II, then MAC, then Windows 95, etc...
I can run it all: but why go back to MAC?
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Old 10-26-2009, 11:36 PM   #40
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Re: Opinions on music software

For anyone who may read this...if you are recording music, get a Mac and use Logic. You will never regret it.
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