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SOFTWARE RECOMMENDATION

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VideoHere
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HI FOLKS,

I'M NOT SURE THIS WAS THE APPROPRIATE FORUM CATEGORY BUT IT APPEARS A LOT OF THE "PROS" HANG OUT HERE, SO I THOUGHT I'D ASK....(LOL)

CAN YOU RECOMMEND A GOOD, EASY-TO-USE AND UNDERSTAND WINDOWS XP-BASED RECORDING SOFTWARE?

I NEED SOMETHING SIMPLE BUT COMPREHENSIVE TO INSTALL IN MY NOTEBOOK TO PRACTICE, RECORD ETC. I HAVE AUDACITY (FREEBIE) BUT NOW WANT TO UPGRADE, ETC.

MUCH THANKS IN ADVANCE,

BOB

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What are your reasons for wanting to upgrade from Audacity? None of the pro DAWs (Digital Audio Workstations) are what I would call simple. GarageBand is the closest in my mind (not that it's a DAW), but only available of course for the MacOS X platform.

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VIDEOHERE,

One other thing. Why do you always post in all capital letters? That's considered pretty bad form in the 'net world. It sends the message to other people that you're shouting at them, and it's much harder to read than proper capitalization. I for one would really appreciate it if you would use proper capitalization. Thanks.

Josh

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agree with the other joshua (lol) Go and get a mac and you will have programs like GarageBand that are really easy and complete. Once you got a mac you can't get back on windows ;-).

Or else stay with audacity, it's the simple one and it suits your needs, sing along a playback track and record your voice, add some effect etc.

So buy a soundcard and a mic and let's go.... ;-)

ps: no need to write in capital letters...

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My vote goes for Garageband too for a basic dead easy interface for getting your ideas down (and can actually create some really good pro sounding recordings) but i you've not seen the light and come over to mac osx just yet (!) cakewalk sonar used to be my software of choice.

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thanks richard,

folks, all i really want is to be able to easily..i'm no engineer

record my voice

change keys by 1/2 steps

add effects like echo, compression, reverb and flanger

dub

garageband will do those things?

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  • 5 months later...

Hi Videohere,

I have been using Reaper recently for recording my voice and voice lessons, and it has been working great for me on PC running Vista 64 bit. Reaper is a Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) Software package.

In terms of which DAWs are the best, I don't know and judging from the forums and reviews I have read many are fine, and a lot has to do with personal preference.

For what I have been using it for, recording my singing, I would say the advantages that set it appart from other DAWs are:

1. It has a great forum community (and what could be more important!)

2. The only version is the full version so you get a full power DAW that can be used for professional quality recording and mixing if you decide you want to try that.

3. It is only $60 AND many professionals like it better than Pro Tools or other much more expensive DAWs.

It may not be as user friendly as some of the less powerful programs (or even some of the other powerful ones) I am not sure and have not used many other DAWS to compare it with. But the good news is you can down load it for free for 30 days to try it before you are supposed to pay the $60. I thought it was fairly straight forward to be able to record tracks and put at least one effect on them.

I would recommend that whatever you get, try a trial version first and make sure it will work with your computer without too much trouble. Some of the other things that I have wanted to run with Reaper on my PC did not have stable drivers for vista 64 bit which was not much fun to try to sort out.

So anyway, Reaper is a low risk option at least, which I think can meet your needs.

I hope this is helpful.

Doug

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Yeah, I have friends who work at the Swedish equivalent of the BBC and Ive often been there recording with one of them. They use protools and cubase professionally. Only for jingles mind you, but thats about the difficulty level you may want to be at.

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CAN YOU RECOMMEND A GOOD, EASY-TO-USE AND UNDERSTAND WINDOWS XP-BASED RECORDING SOFTWARE?

BOB

Bob: Just to get the name out there, I use Cakewalk SONAR. Its likely wayyyyy more than you want feature and cost-wise, but its got all the bells and whistles I've ever needed.

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It would depend on what your ultimately looking for. If you want to upgrade to get better quality, your going to eventually have to learn a little bit about a new recording software. Also depending on your budget, I would say go with Protools, as it is actually relatively simple to get up and running. If you have some money to spend on it, and depending on your computer, I would say go with something like this:

http://www.guitarcenter.com/Digidesign-Pro-Tools-Mbox-Mini-Package-773405-i1177445.gc

Although it may seem a little pricey, you get alot. It comes with a mic and studio monitors, and this box will do a voice and an instrument at the same time. This comes with an instructional DVD that will show you how to use it, and if you get this and run into any problems, you can shoot me an email.

On the other hand, if you don't have the money to spend, I second Doug on the Reaper. For a professional, it is very comparable to something like protools, although it is a bit more complicated and not as intuitive. It is however ALOT "cough cough" cheaper... But if you went with reaper, you would still have to get some kind of interface and a mic to make the best of it and get the highest quality.

Hope this helped. If you have any questions, you can shoot me and email....

-Drew

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+1 for Cakewalk Sonar - Cakewalk has long been know for developing user friendly software. If you are new to recording software, this is a great help. The new version 8.5 has an outstanding voice plug-in called Vocal strip. I used it for the first time today - it is really good.

To record voice you'll want to monitor with low latency. This can be a tricky thing. I use Line6 UX2 - it has the ability to monitor your voice with reverb, but track your voice dry (which is what you want).

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I use to use Sonar and had been for quite a few years. Great program. I moved to Cubase this year as I wanted a app that I could use on a MAC and a PC. If you are solely a windows user Sonar is a great way to go. I am very happy with Cubase and actually prefer it a little more than Sonar in some regards. There are still things I miss in Sonar. You can't go wrong with either.

This is a good shootout of top DAW's. It doesn't include reaper but has good information on many of the apps you will find in recording studios.

http://www.digitalmusicdoctor.com/shootout/shootout_summary.htm?PHPSESSID=9a048fc484bed1d69f25a4d61b76af96

If you are purchasing think not only what you are doing today but what you might do in years to come. Think about what is important to you, MIDI editing, audio editing? A lot of things to consider.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I would recommend Sony's SoundForge Audio Studio. The new version even has a feature which will rip vocal tracks from songs ("karaoke style") so you can slip your own in there. It's really easy to use, and if you just want something to do demos with, it's just fine. I got my copy for free after a rebate from Fry's Electronics.

If you are really interested, get a copy of Modern Recording Techniques

; once you learn the basic button-pushing, the learning curve of any software dips dramatically.

More opinions:

ProTools: Industry standard. You need to have a knowledge of recording theory/technique to make the most of it. However, I've been involved with sessions where the board was completely dead, and the studio's PT rig saved all our butts. :)

Cubase: I've only known one person who actually bought a Cubase rig; mainly because he didn't want to shell out the cash for ProTools in his home studio. After a week, he began trying to sell it at whatever loss because he found it to be useless.

Vegas Pro: ProTools knock-off. You might as well buy PT.

Cakewalk: I started out using cakewalk! It's simple to learn, but one outgrows it quickly. At least, I did.

Digital Performer: A perfectly respectable option; mostly like the Sopny products, but less "prosumer" in nature. Actually, MOTU makes some pretty useful stuff for Mac and PC.

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I was planning on using Logic; however, Apple is still charging $1K more for a laptop with Intel Core Duo, 2 GB RAM less, lower res and smaller size screen, CD / DVD player / burner, no eSATA, no N wireless support, as well as other year old plus technology than a Sony F series of which has Intel i7, 2 GB MORE of RAM, higher resolution and larger screen, BlueRay player, eSATA connection, N wireless and still cost $1,000.00 less. I thought Apple would announce a new configuration this month, but that didn't happen. Apple is pricing themselves out the market with old technology (I agree they are beautifully designed and I understand MacOs X performance / requirements over Windows).

Using a PC removes Logic (perhaps the best recording software) from the list of choices. ProTools is an OLD industry standard. I work on a ProTools full HD rig; however, it costs around $100,000.00 and is not mine. The board is a digital Digidesign. For the home consumer, the audio interface is a key part of the equation, as the pre-amps are in the chain. Few interfaces stand out as having great pre amps. The two companies that do have good pre-amps are Appogee (again Apple ONLY) and Mark Of The Unicorn (MOTU).

ProTools requires you use specific audio interfaces, of which have severely inferior pre-amps to Apogee and MOTU last I checked. So now all industry standard software (Logic, ProTools) are removed from the choices because of 1) high price of laptop with old technology 2) require audio interfaces that have poor pre-amps (this may no longer be true, but was last I checked).

I am not concerned with a high learning curve. I am simply trying to design the best solution (best results / sound) within a hobbyist budget.

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Lol, the old mac vs pc conversation...

You can't really compare pc & mac, the hardware does not do all the job. You don't have to get 8gig or ram to get a powerfull computer when it's a mac.

I own a MacBookPro 17' of early 2007, it's only 2gig of ram, but i can make serious daw project with logic pro and never had a problem. I can also use, photoshop, dozens of firefox tabs, logic pro, itunes, watch a movie at the same time without having problems.

On a pc 2gig is just the minimum the run the os.

But you can get an used MacBookPro like mine for about 1000$ these days.

For your choice, did you ever try Ableton Live, very intuitive and powerfull ;-). Run both on PC & Mac. A really great app!

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