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4 Audacity Alternatives You Should Explore

With the amount of DAWs out there, you can have trouble finding which one to start with. It can be especially hard when you are trying to work on a budget or even find what options you have when you are first learning. Within this article, you will hopefully find the answers you are looking for and learn something new along the way. 

Audacity  Alternatives Highlighted

  1. Pro Tools First – best for a professional feel
  2. Cakewalk – best for a full DAW
  3. Soundtrap – best for beginners
  4. Garageband – best for Apple users

Audacity  Quick Review

Audacity
Audacity

Audacity has quite a few bonuses that we will get into that make it stand out amongst the free DAWs out there. I’ve taken the time to work with it and see it in action and was always impressed at what all I had at my fingertips. 

Why Users Like Audacity :

  • Group Effort – The creators of Audacity have made it a team effort to build and maintain their plugin and welcome all help in the coding.
  • Third-Party Plugins – Audacity works with a majority of VST Plugins but not most midi instruments.
  • Platforms – Audacity is available on all platforms including Linux.
  • Easy Learning – With Audacity being a group effort to maintain, there are many forums and tutorials that can help you along the way.

Compatibility:

  • Mac
    • 10.7, 10.15
  • Windows
    • 10

Price:

Pro Tools First

Pro Tools First
Pro Tools First

So many beginners view Pro Tools as a daunting insurmountable obstacle in the digital audio world. Pro Tools First is the perfect way to start overcoming any confusion or obstacles that come with learning Pro Tools. 

Features Like Audacity :

  • Plugins – Pro Tools First comes with over 20 plugins that are also included with Pro Tools Standard. 
  • Editing – All editing such as mixing, cutting, tracking, etc. is the same in Pro Tools Standard as well as Pro Tools First so you can transition your workflow seamlessly between the two. 
  • Air!XPand2 – One or Avid’s most popular synths is free with First.

Compatibility:

  • Mac
    • OS 10.13 or higher
    • 4 GB RAM (8 GB or more recommended)
  • Windows
    • 10
    • 4 GB RAM (8 GB or more recommended)

Price:

Cakewalk

Cakewalk
Cakewalk by BandLab

Cakewalk is a platform that has become a beautiful new light in the world of audio with so much available for so little. They have easily set a new standard for free DAWs. 

Features Like Audacity :

  • Industry Best Engine – Cakewalk has one of the leading engines and is VST3 as well as touch screen compatible. 
  • Award Winning – This is the only free DAW that I know of that has won any awards for its user interface.
  • Plugins – Not only does Cakewalk include some amazing plugins of compressors, eqs, and effects, they also work with third party plugins.

Compatibility:

  • Windows
    • 7 or higher
    • 4 GB Ram

Price:

Cakewalk Users:

  • Slow Mike – ChoQuib Town
  • Javier Colon – Winner of the Voice
  • Adventure Club (Electronic Music Generators)

Soundtrap

Soundtrap
Soundtrap

This is the only alternative that is paid. HOWEVER, I only suggest it for beginners because this was built specifically to aid in learning the ins and outs of digital audio. If you would like to look more in depth at what Sountrap has to offer, we have a full review available here

Features Like Audacity :

  • Collaboration – Soundtrap is an online based DAW and with that comes the ability to work with musicians and producers anywhere who also have Soundtrap. 
  • Tutorials – There is an ever growing library of tutorials and how-to videos produced directly by the experts at Soundtrap to make sure you are using all the tools to your advantage. 
  • Loops and Samples – With over 4000 choice loops and presets, Soundtrap has all the royalty free sounds you would ever need to make your next beat.

Compatibility:

  • Mac
  • Windows
  • Tablet

Price:

  • Music Makers Premium
  • Music Makers Supreme
  • Complete

Garageband

Garageband
Garageband

Garageband is the creative world where beginners can learn about music and time signature by combining loops and samples with their own ingenuity. Every Apple user has been tempted to open it up and test their skills. 

Features Like Audacity :

  • Plugins – Garageband comes with its own array of plugins setup to help you learn their functions as well as create a capable sound.
  • Transform Pad – With the Transform Pad, you can morph the sound of your synth to fully match the vibe of your song. 
  • Loops – All loops and samples available in Garageband are royalty free and can be used in any track you publish.

Compatibility:

  • Mac
  • Tablet

Price:

Garageband Users:

  • Oasis (Rock)
  • T-Pain – Rappa Turnt Sanga
  • Steve Lacey (Kendrick Lamar)

Creativity with a Cost

Learning all there is to know starts somewhere. The biggest point to remember is to not let your discouragement get to you. I won’t say don’t be discouraged because that is unavoidable in a world full of competition. Just use every opportunity as a learning experience to push you further and grow into the engineer and producer you are meant to be. Every engineer has had those moments sitting at the console where they questioned why they were there. You just cannot dwell on it if you are to keep moving forward.

If you would like help learning more about other DAWs, we would love to help you here.


And if you are wanting to learn about plugins and new additions you can make to your DAW, we have a long list of reviews and suggestions that is always growing available here.

Soundtrap by Spotify FREE Trial

Soundtrap is available as a completely online DAW powerful enough to produce music at a professional level. The Studio makes projects are available as collaborative efforts for band members or producers. An affordable option, that comes with a 30-day free trial.