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4 Cubase Alternatives With Reviews & Pricing

Being able to work in multiple settings is an amazing selling point for any engineer. What makes it easy is when there are multiple DAWs that are similar in quality and easy to learn. In this article we are looking at Cubase as well as some fantastic alternatives that you can try to keep yourself at the top of your game. 

Cubase Alternatives Highlighted

  1. Pro Tools – best for editing and mixing
  2. Logic – best for price-conscious Mac users
  3. Studio One – best for general use
  4. Reaper – best for price-conscious

Cubase Quick Review

cubase

Whenever I look into Cubase, I find more and more ways it can be used. It not only tackles electronic and MIDI-based music beautifully, but it also is an amazing approach to standard audio recording and editing. Everything that I have seen so far of Cubase has done nothing but persuade me to like it. 

Why Users Like Cubase:

  • Chord Track – Chord Track makes it easier for those who do not know music theory as well as other producers and allows for you to simply select the best chord rather than having to physically play it. 
  • Variaudio – Variaudio is essentially a built-in Melodyne/Autotune/Pitch shift that is super easy to use and comes with Cubase. 
  • Audio Alignment – Audio Alignment gives you an easy way to stack vocals and line everything up perfectly to the reference track. 
  • Sampler Track – With Sampler Track you can record any audio clip and once you have it selected, manipulate it with your midi controller and effects to create new and innovative sounds. 
  • Channel Docking – You can dock any channel you want to the left or right of the mix window for easy access throughout the entire editing process.

Compatibility:

  • Mac
    • Mojave, Catalina
  • Windows
    • 10

Price:

Cubase Users:

  • Nick Blagona (Chicago, Deep Purple)
  • Gabry Ponte (Italo Dance, Electro House
  • Peter Frampton (Rock)

Pro Tools

avid protools logo

Pro Tools is an industry-standard from Avid that has become a staple in studios across the globe. So many producers and engineers use this to edit and create 

Features Like Cubase:

  • Plugins – Pro Tools comes with an amazing selection of stock plugins to choose from when first starting out. 
  • UVI Falcon and Workstation – Avid has released a new synthesizer and general sound designer opening a new avenue of possibility. 
  • Mixing – Pro Tools has an easy to mix and edit workflow to help you group, automate, and balance all of your tracks.

Compatibility:

  • Mac
    • High Sierra 10.13.6
    • Mojave 10.14.6
    • Catalina 10.15.5
  • Windows
    • Windows 10
  • Tablet
    • Free

Price:

  • Pro Tools First
    • Total- Free
  • Pro Tools Standard
  • Pro Tools Ultimate

Pro Tools Users:

  • Dr. Dre (Hip-Hop, G-Funk)
  • Warren Huart (The Fray, Disturbed, Jared James Nichols)
  • Paul Epworth (Adele, Florence and the Machine, Rihanna)

Logic

apple's logic pro x logo

Logic has built its way from being an expensive Garageband all the way to being used in professional studios. Opening up new ways in ease of use as well as creativity, many engineers wholeheartedly use Logic. 

Features Like Cubase:

  • Pitch Correction – Logic’s built-in pitch correction is very similar to the style of correction that Cubase has as well.
  • Instruments – Apple has one of the largest libraries for MIDI instruments as well as samples. 
  • Logic Remote – Logic Remote is a FREE app for iPads to control parameters like pan and volume on your iPad while you have your session open on the computer.

Compatibility:

  • Mac
    • OS X 10.14.6
    • 4 GB RAM (8 GB or more recommended)
  • Tablet
    • Free

Price:

Logic X Pro Users:

  • Daft Punk (Electronic, EDM)
  • Oak Felder (Demi Lovato, Eminem, Nicki Minaj)
  • Fluff (Metal/Rock Guitarist, Youtube Personality)

Studio One Professional

Studio One logo

Studio One is created and backed by Presonus who creates some amazing interfaces and monitors. From interfaces to DAWs you can be sure to find a creative and interactive experience. 

Features Like Cubase:

  • Chord Detection – With chord detection, Studio One can transcribe what you are playing to follow along with while playing other instruments. 
  • Intuitive Beat Maker – The beatmaker has a special customizable layout to use any samples you have and can edit their sound on the fly. 
  • Melodyne Essentials – Melodyne is a leader in the world of pitch correction and is included in your copy of Studio One Professional. 

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)
  • Tablet
    • Free

Price:

Studio One Users:

  • Luke Moellman (Great Good Fine Ok)
  • Sha Money XL (50 Cent, 2 Chainz)
  • Jon-John Robinson (TLC, Diana Ross, Gladys Knight)

Reaper

reaper logo

Reaper is a DAW that sits low on the radar of many engineers but can deliver right next to any of the big dogs. Many fantastic engineers around the world will attest to the ability and dexterity of this DAW.

Features Like Cubase:

  • Size – Reaper is created in such a compact manner that it can be run from a portable drive. 
  • Themes – Users and developers of Reaper create and upload “themes” which are essentially skins so you can have a similar layout as DAWs you are more experienced with.
  • Trial – Before you commit, you can try out Reaper for 60 days FREE.

Compatibility:

  • Mac
    • OS X 10.5-10.14
  • Windows
    • XP, Vista, 7, 8, 10

Price:

Reaper Users:

  • Leo Moracchioli (Frog Leap Studios, Youtube)
  • Glenn Fricker (SMG Studios, Youtube)
  • Tycho (Chillwave, Ambient Music)

Addressing the Learning Curve

When it comes to learning a new DAW it can be quite daunting. Honestly, it is hard enough to learn your first one. The great thing with all of these companies is you can find starter videos on their websites, and you can just as easily find forums full of experienced engineers who can help answer your questions and point you in the right direction. 

If you are wanting to learn more about these and other DAWs, check out our info here.

If you would like to look into some of the best plugins currently available to use in your DAWs, we have a multitude of reviews and comparisons of plugins available here for you as well.