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What is the absolute most basic, easy-to-use DAW?

Discussion in 'Recording In Progress' started by Telecaster88, Sep 8, 2020.

  1. Telecaster88

    Telecaster88 Tele-Holic

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    I'm trying, really trying to get my nerve up to start home recording. Every time I get going a little I get overwhelmed and back off.

    I have mics, stands, a Focusrite 2i2, Tascam 8 track digital recorder, PreSonus Studio One, and a Windows laptop.

    My guy at Sweetwater recommended Studio One for me. I made a little headway into recording and overdubbing on it, but got lost at the mixing part. I then bought the Tascam because I'm more of a knob guy than a screen guy, but I realize I'll likely have to use a DAW to complement it at times.

    Studio One seems so complex and even the most basic tasks don't feel intuitive to me. Is there a DAW that's super basic? Something I could wrap my mind around and gain some experience with?

    I really only want to record guitar, vocals, add some basic overdubs, and then be able to mix it all down into finished songs. I hear you guys rave about stuff like Audacity, Reaper etc. Are any of those simpler than Studio One, with an easier learning curve?

    Thanks!
     
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  2. Peegoo

    Peegoo Poster Extraordinaire

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    Check out BandLab; it's a free online DAW. If you have a little effects processor for guitar and a USB interface, you can jump right in and go.

    I use Garage Band and it works pretty well. My chain is guitar, POD HD desktop, USB interface, powered USB hub, iPad. No mics, no amps.

    Here's an example:

     
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  3. tfarny

    tfarny Friend of Leo's

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    I'm a beginner too, and impatient. I really didn't like Studio One. Bandlab (old Cakewalk) was unstable on my system and I didn't like it either. These tools are designed not only for instrument playing musicans trying to record their guitar tunes, but hiphop guys, djs, sample stuff, and so on. Lots of stuff I have no use for cluttering up the screen.
    I like Reaper much better, but it's also powerful. The instructions were good and so far it is very stable and fast. Just feels like a more professional setup. I wouldn't say it's "simple" though.

    I just bought an Ipad and am looking forward to trying Garageband for ipad....
     
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  4. Ed Driscoll

    Ed Driscoll Tele-Holic

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    I didn't know until this thread that Bandlab had a DAW besides their acquisition of Cakewalk's Sonar. It looks like the Bandlab, err, Bandlab DAW is a bit of a Garageband knockoff. But it's got to be much easier for a beginner to dive into than Cakewalk.
     
  5. xtelesquirex

    xtelesquirex Tele-Holic

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    I'm not familiar with Studio One. I've used Cubase, Garage Band, and Logic. If you have a Mac you already have Garage Band. I found that to be relatively easy to use. Cubase was/is confusing and frustrating for me.
     
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  6. jvin248

    jvin248 Poster Extraordinaire

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    Audacity is a great first step.
    Many plugins are available if you search around.

    It's free.

    .
     
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  7. Boil

    Boil Tele-Holic

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    I use Mixcraft, it works pretty well and its not that difficult to use...but its not free.
     
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  8. bftfender

    bftfender Poster Extraordinaire

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    reaper
     
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  9. burtf51

    burtf51 Tele-Holic

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    deleted
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2020
  10. 3-Chord-Genius

    3-Chord-Genius Poster Extraordinaire

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    Kristal Audio Engine. Free, 16 tracks, effects. Only downside is that it does not export MP3 (it does high-quality WAV), so you'll need to convert WAV to MP3 if that's what you want.

    https://www.kreatives.org/kristal/
     
  11. thesamhill

    thesamhill Tele-Holic Silver Supporter

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    Honestly, I think you're looking for GarageBand. But you gotta have a mac or an iPad/iPhone.

    Other than that, I vote for Audacity. It is pretty easy and it's free so nothing lost if you don't like it.

    No matter what software I'm using, there are always about a million options and features I never use. I don't have tons of patience for fiddling around with knobs though.
     
  12. Peegoo

    Peegoo Poster Extraordinaire

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    Two things you need with Garage Band are a *powered* USB hub, and a USB camera adapter (for iPad/iPhone) in line with the USB cable from the USB hub.

    [​IMG]

    Here's the chain:

    -Instrument cable comes out of guitar and plugs into POD (1)
    -Instrument cable goes from POD to USB interface (2)
    -USB cable runs from USB interface to powered USB hub (3)
    -USB cable runs from USB hub to iPad/iPhone camera adapter (4)
    -Camera adapter plugs into iPad (5)

    You can move files around by sticking a thumb drive into the USB hub and accessing it from the iPad's files manager. Note: you cannot pull a sound file directly from a thumb drive or the desktop into Garage Band. You have to move the file into the Garage Band File Transfer folder for Garage Band to use it.
     
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  13. 24 track

    24 track Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    For PC reaper , for mac Garage band

    you have all you will need to play and record , the key is to keep this really simple and do not over compllcate the process
     
  14. Biffasmum

    Biffasmum Tele-Meister

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    Tfarny, you have the iPad and GB so to record guitars/vocals etc you’ll need an audio interface like the iRig or similar.

    You can transfer files around in different ways, but email and Dropbox work well on Mac.

    Let us know how you go!
     
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  15. BrazHog

    BrazHog TDPRI Member

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    Audacity is easy to use for recording a single track of audio (like a voice memo or a lecture). Seems kind of convoluted for mixing down a multi-track recording, where one would like to tweak the EQ in real time, ride the faders, things of that nature.
     
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  16. tfarny

    tfarny Friend of Leo's

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    Thanks guys, I already started a thread on my Ipad journey. Recording on it will be ultra-basic, anytime it gets fancier I'll use Reaper and my I/O on my PC. The ipad will be mostly for practice tools, creation of backing tracks and so on. I think I can get Irig as well which will plug directly in.
     
  17. black_doug

    black_doug Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    I found Avid Pro Tools easy to learn. Only $29.99.
     
  18. johnny k

    johnny k Poster Extraordinaire

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    Audacity is the most basic. Then comes reaper, but i spent a good 10 hours trying to fix the latency, and i still have some, so i need to tweak it again.
     
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  19. Mike_LA

    Mike_LA Tele-Afflicted

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    [​IMG]

    As of January 1st 2019, commercial licensing and support for KRISTAL Audio Engine has been discontinued. Additionally, there is no more public download provided here and the KRISTAL User Forum has been closed.

    You are more than welcome to switch to KRISTAL's successor Studio One. Each version - including the free Studio One Prime - supports the .kristal file format so you can continue to work with your songs.
     
  20. KennyWTelejazz

    KennyWTelejazz Tele-Meister

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    Kenny
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2020
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