Digital Audio Workstations and The Options That Exist

After spending the time to determine which digital audio workstation is the right fit for you, don't forget to review the countless plugins that you can use to manipulate the audio through EQ, compression, saturation, reverb, delay, etc.

Digital Audio Workstations and The Options That Exist
If your needs fall more into recording and/or editing audio, then you should consider Pro Tools by Avid. Pro Tools has been the go-to platform for recording for several years. While there are many DAWs available that all have strengths, Pro Tools is the standard and can be found in countless recording studios around the world.
Digital Audio Workstations and The Options That Exist
If your needs fall more into recording and/or editing audio, then you should consider Pro Tools by Avid. Pro Tools has been the go-to platform for recording for several years. While there are many DAWs available that all have strengths, Pro Tools is the standard and can be found in countless recording studios around the world.

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When I first started working in the music industry, back in the day — January 10, 1997 to be exact — I had no idea what Avid’s Pro Tools was. I remember hearing people complain about how bad it sounded, compared to analog tape, but I didn’t even have a clue what they were talking about.

Once you have purchased the digital audio workstation that best suits your needs, you need to invest time in learning how to use it.

In my mind back then, a big studio with a 2-inch analog tape machine and a Neve console were all that was needed to record music.

Twenty-one years later, I now make records in a converted bedroom on a laptop that sound as good as anything I recorded in a big studio “back in the day.”

I’ve mixed songs for movies and albums for major labels on equipment that costs the equivalent of paying for a couple of days of studio time in a big recording studio.

My, how the times have changed.

Digital Audio Workstations (DAWs) have made recording technology available to anyone with a computer or smartphone. From Apple’s GarageBand, which is available on iPhones, iPads and Apple computers, to Avid’s Pro Tools First, you can record, edit and mix music for free.

As a friend of mine from college used to say, “Free don’t cost nothing!”

Depending on your needs, there are many DAWs to choose from including Logic, Pro Tools, Ableton, Reason, PreSonus Studio One, FL Studio, Cubase, Reaper, etc. All DAWs have strengths and weaknesses, so you should research which one is the best tool for you, before making the decision of which to purchase.

If you plan to use a lot of the features of MIDI, then Logic by Apple would be a digital audio workstation you should strongly consider. Logic is used by countless music producers who want the ability to manipulate MIDI data, in order to easily take advantage of quantization, tempo or key changes or many of the other features that MIDI offers. Logic also offers high-quality built-in software instruments, such as drums, piano and synthesizers. Logic is only available for Mac OS and can be purchased from the App Store for $199.99.

If your needs fall more into recording and/or editing audio, then you should consider Pro Tools by Avid. Pro Tools has been the go-to platform for recording for several years. While there are many DAWs available that all have strengths, Pro Tools is the standard and can be found in countless recording studios around the world. Pro Tools can be purchased for $599 (for the boxed version) or $29.99 per month for the subscription version (downloadable version).


More About Daniel Beard
Daniel Beard has served on staff at Clements Baptist Church in Athens, Ala., for more than 12 years. As the church's Media Director, he oversees all aspects of audio, video, web and print media. Daniel worked for 10 years at Fame Recording Studios in Muscle Shoals, Ala. After leaving Fame, he began doing production and mixing at his personal studio in Harvest, Ala., as well as other studios in Muscle Shoals. Two of the albums Daniel worked on were nominated for Grammy Awards in 2014. Daniel has produced and mixed songs for major motion pictures and has mixed several #1 and top 10 albums and singles. Some of the artists Daniel has worked with include Anthony Hamilton, Alicia Keys, Gavin DeGraw, Shenandoah, Alabama, Candi Staton and Eric Essix. He can be found on Twitter @danielbeard.
Get in Touch: danielb64@me.com    More by Daniel Beard

Latest Resource

For Lighting Design, What Software Is The Right Match For Your Needs? (Part 3)
Dig into this final part of a three-part series that looks into choices for lighting design software, including Vectorworks and LightConverse, and how each can best serve the needs of your church.


Article Topics

Products · Technology · Audio · Visual Arts · Multi-media · Ableton · Analog · Avid · Compression · Cubase · Delay · All Topics

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