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SONAR is now 'Cakewalk by Bandlab", and is available to download for free now at https://cakewalk.bandlab.com. Check it out!
Hey Pete! Well what they say is the download is free. Yes you can use it pretty much as freeware for now. But here are some things to look for In the future with this product:
The product will be known as Cakewalk only, the name Sonar has been dropped. I never liked the name Sonar, it sounded old like it belonged on a submarine or something.
They stripped out a lot the third party tools, goodies, and plugins because they could not afford to pay the third party's licensing fees.
The original BandLab DAW was a cheap social media music making DAW that left a lot more to be desired. So they purchased Cakewalk from the Gibson guitar people to ramp up their product. Eventually Sonar or should I say Cakewalk will have in-app purchases and a pay as you go social media fee licensing structure of some sort.
If anyone plans to go that route review the company's old platform setup before they take it down.https://www.bandlab.com/
I am not saying that BandLab is a bad thing, but before you invest your time and money, take the time to understand the BandLab way at: https://www.bandlab.com/
If for some reason I was giddy over Cakewalk Sonar, I'd see if I could find the previous licensed version for cheap with all of the third party stuff still there and fully licensed. Once again the BandLab version of Sonar will morph into a social media music making platform overtime like their current offering. So look before you leap!
i think i will stick with Audacity....
@Rats: have you ever tried REAPER? Not to knock audacity, but it's not really even a DAW. https://www.quora.com/Is-Audacity-a-DAW-or-not I like the analogy in the answers, can you be a Digital artist and only use MS-Paint? Sure you can but you'd have to be masochistic to do so.
@ neuromancer56: I am strongly thinking about switching to Reaper. After watching many of their tutorial videos, I get more convinced in purchasing their product. For now, I am evaluating it, and although it expires after 60 days, I might buy it sooner within the month without hesitation. I love my Studio One, but it's a CPU hog, and Reaper is known to be CPU friendly from what I've read. Will be testing it out today to get a better feel of it.
@ Joe- I agree, it's best to read to get more familiar with Bandlab policies. From what I've read and understand, all their goodies are stripped, but if you have the Platinuum version of Sonar, it will integrate with the Bandlab version with ease. Here's a list of all the things stripped:
No soft synths besides the legacy TTS-1 and the old four Studio Instruments (E-piano, Strings, Bass and Drum)No Fx Plugins besides the legacy Sonitus ones and Overloud TH3No MelodyneNo V-VocalNo Drum ReplacerNo audio content (only a few midi clips)Only a few ProChanel FX No presets or very few in the different categoriesNo documentationLegacy products will no longer be updated
I installed it to test it, but I'm just not feeling it. I'm sure others will think otherwise.
Reaper is excellent. It's really easy to use if you just want the basics but if you want to get more in depth you can do that too fairly easily. I've been using it for 3 years now and I'm still discovering new things I can do with it even now and I bet there's a lot more that I'm yet to discover. I've not tried all the built in plugins for a start.
I can only think of 2 downsides to it...
1) You don't get any synths with it.2) Omnisphere 2 sometimes crashes with Reaper in the latest versions when stepping through presets and as I use that a lot that's annoying, but there is a workaround for it and it's a problem with Omnisphere 2 not Reaper (they've acknowledged as much on their website).
Technically I think you can still run Reaper without ever having to buy a license but as it's so good and cheap in comparison to other DAWs I don't mind contributing to the cause!
anyways. im late but ive used sonar since the 2k version and its not bad but 8.1 and x1 will always be the best versions.still if youre strapped for cash i do recommend it as it has essentially the same functionality as the X series. Despite it being slightly annoying and glitchy i can recommend it for starters as its still very powerful and good on lower end computers (which is the primary reason i continued to use it)
Essentially the software itself is free, just not any of the VSTs which honestly isnt really a problem considering how underwhelming everything but Zeta+ is. theres many other sources to get free ones and you just have to try them until you find one you like. vst4free is your friend. so yeah, id still recommend it.
I've been using Ableton 9 live lite for a while now but am not that impressed to be honest.Okay it's the free version that came with a keyboard I bought and it's had some use but being free it must be missing a lot of stuff.
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