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Sonar X1 User Thinking whether to go with X2 or StudioOne
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zoobooboozoo
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Joined: 24/03/2011 10:13:48
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Hi all,

I kinda left DAWing ( ) for the last 6-12 months and I'm getting back at it.

I used cubase a few years back, than switched to Sonar X1, and than had a break.

I like some things about Sonar X1-the new interface and pro-channel are cool features,
but it was also clumsy, not always user friendly and ofen buggy.
I remember trying out StudioOne v1 and I liked it but thought it was a lil' premature and lacked some important features,
Never the less I liked the fact that it's a modern product and not a 20-years long update & upgrade,
I think you can really tell by how if functions and how "friendly" the software is.

Now I'm thinking whether to go Sonar X2, StudioOne 2.5, or maybe something else.

I mostly record jazz, funk and rock using live guitars and a midi controller for piano, strings, sometimes bass etc.
I also have an electronic drum set I use with Superior Drummer 2.0.

I would love some thoughts on the touchy DAW X Vs. DAW Y subject, thanks.
Daw stew
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Joined: 11/10/2012 14:04:16
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When I was demoing which Daw to use I tried Sonar 8.5. I disliked the cluttered view, there was so much happening around the arrangement view that it felt that the view of the tracks made them feel buried by the surrounding graphical items.
Studio one is more minimalistic and as a positive consequence very easy to navigate. Sonar was quite buggy when I tried it so stability was one of the reasonsI decided not to use it.
For what you're doing studio one will meet your needs.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 09/02/2013 11:49:23

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zoobooboozoo
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Joined: 24/03/2011 10:13:48
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Thanks stew. Although I think you need to compare at least X1 with studio one since the interface was changed and IMHO was a big improvement. although as I said - I'm not sure it was big enough
Daw stew
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Hi, yes you are right, however a browse of the sonar forum reveals lots of users reporting show stopping bugs with X1. Perhaps X2 addressed those issues.
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SkylineUK
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Joined: 14/01/2011 17:18:03
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zoobooboozoo wrote:Hi all,

... and a midi controller for piano, strings, sometimes bass etc....


Do you have external MIDI-compatible sound modules for the above? If so, be aware that with Sonar you are able to use the facility called Instrument Definitions for these sounds, which means you will be able to browse, audition and select patches by name in a track, even on the fly. You can't do that in Studio One, and even to change a patch you need to know its MSB/LSB code. I use Sonar if I'm working on a song that involves MIDI.

I use Studio One for audio because of the slick integration of Melodyne and the Project page where songs can be mastered, sequenced and put straight to CD, and Sonar has no equivalent to this (yet...).

You should try the demos of both and see how you get on.
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tyacko
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Joined: 19/10/2011 13:49:58
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Well... asking the question here will give you responses that mostly likely will favor S1V2.5...

I came from Sonar (leaving at the end of the X1 lifecycle) and I'm certainly glad I made the change. S1V2.5 is much more stable than I ever had under Sonar. As others have mentioned if you use external MIDI hardware for sounds S1V2.5 is a bit clunky to control them from the DAW, but pretty much everything else (to me) is a much better implementation than X1. Now, I was a big fan of Sonar when it first came out mainly because it was the most affordable PC DAW of its time.

I was concerned when I first considered the move, but the locked in Pro-Channel features for me was it. I like the idea that a DAW does the best it can do being a DAW. Right now, S1V2.5 is that for me.

Is there a learning curve with S1V2.5? Yep. I'd say as much of a change as you probably experienced trying to go from Sonar 8.5 to X1. Can S1v2.5 do what you need it to do? For the most part I will say definitely. And in most cases significantly better than how it is implemented in Sonar. Are there things that Sonar does that S1V2.5 doesn't? Sure. But just reading what your requirements are I think S1v2.5 will serve your needs well and be signficantly more stable.

One last thing, I will say that the testing that I've seen done (others might argue) with S1v2 has been much better than what I saw with my life on Sonar (I started at Cakewalk Pro 7.0). I've seen much less obvious issues in S1v2 than I did when I had to upgrade Sonar. There were times where I would say to myself "How did anyone test that?". Is Presonus developers/QA perfect? No. But, in my experience much better.

If you want to tweak to get music out continue with Sonar. If you want to make music I'd recommend S1v2.5.

I'm biased, but that is from my experience.

Hope this helped,
Tom
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keys88
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Joined: 13/01/2011 17:03:54
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I would check out the Sonar user forum before deciding. Seems to be more than the usual amount of discontent over there after the latest release.
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zoobooboozoo
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Joined: 24/03/2011 10:13:48
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I use VSTs, I don't have any crazy sounding synthisers.

I'm leaning towards studio one anyway. the whole "atmosphere" and approach seems healthier and more productive, and stuff is adding up with each release.
mikeolsonstudio
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Joined: 18/01/2013 18:34:01
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I recently bought the X2 upgrade hoping that Cakewalk had completely revamped Sonar 8.5 (which I hated). While X2 offers a lot of "bells and whistles", it is still just too cumbersome for me to get comfortable with and be creative. Besides that, I discovered that underneath its attractive interface is a patchwork of (what to me seems) bloated code that will astonish you with just how poorly implemented its "features" are. It's actually X2 in the front and Sonar 8.5 in the back. I think X2 is headed in the right direction, but they're going to have to do a lot of work to update most of its ancient (and ugly) effects and instruments.

I just purchased S1 after using the demo for the last month. During this time I also watched the Goove3 tutorials on S1 (version 2.0) which, besides getting me up and running in S1, also sold me on the S1 workflow. It took a while, but I finally found a DAW that inspires and doesn't get in the way of being creative. I can't recommended S1 enough.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 09/02/2013 19:16:16

LMike
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SkylineUK wrote:[Do you have external MIDI-compatible sound modules for the above? If so, be aware that with Sonar you are able to use the facility called Instrument Definitions for these sounds, which means you will be able to browse, audition and select patches by name in a track, even on the fly. You can't do that in Studio One,


Well... that's no longer true for Sonar x-pats (Win users) I say that having myself written an add-on for Studio One that does exactly that, to overcome that limitation because yes, it is a pain..

Granted, Sonar's (and any native solution really) is better.
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nickclube
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Joined: 20/10/2011 10:12:35
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Sonar X2 is an excellent product and if you like X1 then X2 is definitely better. It comes with all kinds of great effects and instruments. I use it about 25% of the time mostly because I have been with Cakewalk/Sonar since version Cakewalk version3 - yes, I am that old - and still have a lot of older songs on that format..
However, Studio One has become my "go to" DAW - it sounds great, has some excellent standard effects, and is just so user-friendly. Anything that helps me make music and see what I am doing so clearly and cleanly gets my vote. In recent months I find I am exporting tracks from Sonar and importing them into Studio One to re-mix, simply because I get better results without so much effort. And publishing the finished product is ridiculously easy.
The best sounding DAW in my opinion is Samplitude - don't know why but it really does sound bigger and more vital but its famous end-to-end work process is awful in comparison to Studio One. It's also expensive and requires a very steep learning curve unless you know Protools.
Ian13
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Also a former sonar user, but made the move to S1 and loving it.

I did check out the X1 demo, and the only thing i liked was the pro channel.

The interface was clunky, but as I find myself looking at expensive plugins for the classic gear emulations, I often wish S1 had something similar.

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SkylineUK
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LMike wrote:
SkylineUK wrote:[Do you have external MIDI-compatible sound modules for the above? If so, be aware that with Sonar you are able to use the facility called Instrument Definitions for these sounds, which means you will be able to browse, audition and select patches by name in a track, even on the fly. You can't do that in Studio One,


Well... that's no longer true for Sonar x-pats (Win users) I say that having myself written an add-on for Studio One that does exactly that, to overcome that limitation because yes, it is a pain..

Granted, Sonar's (and any native solution really) is better. [/quote


Details please!

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 13/02/2013 10:28:11

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