Hey guys! It has been a while since I have done an article in a written format, so I thought I would come back with something fun, and close to the heart.
I have been an electronic musician for the better part of a decade, first starting out on Fruity Loops v1 way back in the day. Back then it was less about making music as an outlet of artistic expression, it was about being a teenage gangster rapper yep, hate to say, I was that kid with my buddies sneaking around to smoke and say rhyming words with each other.
Anyway, all the nostalgia aside, I wanted to tell you about my favorite Digital Audio Workstation, Cockos Reaper.
As you can see here, Reaper is nothing short of a professional alternative to Logic or Cubase, which are both multi-track editors with MIDI capabilities. The thing that sets Reaper apart for me is that it is FREE. It is all developed by one guy, who does this as his full time job. If this seems like a grand claim to you, go ahead and scoop up a copy now to check it out; it is no bullshit.
Upon downloading it, you will notice that the setup file is less than 10 megabytes. That’s right. This software packs SO MUCH punch into just 10 megabytes, you will quickly see why I love Reaper so much.
First, it runs on Windows and Apple, and even Linux (check out LinReaper)
It can use all of your VST instruments that you know and love, and can even replace Ableton in the sense that it has native 64-bit support which is something that Ableton Live doesn’t have yet in any fruitful form. This means that you can use huge bass or ambient synths like Omnisphere, which need that 64 bit access for the extra ram, otherwise you are just locking yourself down at 4GB.
For those of you that are familiar with Logic or Cubase, the opening view will be very familiar. Unlimited Audio and MIDI tracks, unlimited busses for FX chains and sends and all that good stuff. Cockos wrote this software suite from the ground up, so naturally he wrote ALL of the plugins for it too, which are actually quite awesome in a no-bullshit way.
A great thing about this program is that you can use the full version, for free, for as long as you want. If you should feel so compelled to pay for a full copy, you can click the message that pops up when you start the free version.
For those of you who would rather not pay the 60$, which is a very affordable price, you will be greeted with the only inconvenience of the free version which is a small 4 second pop up that asks you to consider buying the full version. There are no audio watermarks, no lessening of performance, just the full version no matter what, ready to go.
If you should decide to give Reaper a try, and decide to buy it, rest assured in knowing that ALL updates are free until the next major release, and the community forum is second to none in the department of client engagement and troubleshooting. The troubleshooting area may as well not exist, as I have never had any errors or crashes no matter what I’m doing in Reaper.
Anyway guys, this is starting to sound like a commercial, which is not what I intended; there is just SO much to tell you about this AWESOME software, so just go download a copy for yourself and check it out!
Windows 98/ME/2000/XP/Vista/7 or WINE
(limited support for W98/ME)
Windows XP/Vista/7 x64