Choosing a Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) can be difficult due to the seemingly unlimited options at your disposal, all with their own set of pros and cons. I've selected 5 popular DAWs and highlighted their strengths & shortfalls below.
They are an integral part of the modern music workflow, often the hub of recorded music. It’s important to pick the right DAW for you and your needs, whether you are into the more EDM based workflow of FL Studio or Ableton, or the all-rounder style of Logic, there’s one to best suits your use case.
Logic Pro X
Logic is Apple's offering in the DAW market, with predictably excellent user interface and accessibility, Logic is a popular choice for songwriters & producers who value efficiency and ease of use.
Often regarded as the 'industry standard', Pro Tools has been a mainstay in many professional studios since 1991. Despite it's steep learning curve and frequent crashes, the power available when using Pro Tools for editing is irrefutably up there with the best available.
Reaper is one of the best value for money DAWs available, with a 60 day trial available, it's a great choice for those starting out with the aim to better understand if they want to pursue producing their own music. Although Reaper has a steep learning curve akin to Pro Tools, it's customisation and flexible workflow have seen Reaper become a more widely used and accepted DAW.
FL Studio, formerly known as Fruity Loops, is the DAW for beatmakers and EDM producers alike. The powerful piano roll alongside a versatile workflow have combined to make FL Studio an incredibly popular choice in the world of electronic music, alongside other genres.
Ableton is often the choice of electronic musicians and producers, for both studio and performance application. The powerful plug-ins and instruments that come stock with Ableton make it a great choice for those wanting to work 'in the box'. One downside to Ableton is that when a new version comes out, it is not free and support for older versions quickly dwindles.
I started on Ableton which isn’t ideal for beginners due to its complex yet powerful nature, migrating to Logic suited my workflow for songwriting. I use Pro Tools with some artists and for edit work. They all serve their purpose brilliantly! All DAWs serve a purpose and their is no 'best', just the best suited to your workflow and needs.
What is your favourite DAW & why?