Non-zero budget studio options?

With my current DAW and (mainly hardware) synths I plan to expand this studio, including its hardware and software components. The number of publicly available options is overwhelming. What are the main differences in most popular DAW, software synths, and audio and MIDI hardware, from your experience? I do not speak of VSTi-s, which are generally well demonstrated and discussed in Youtube; I do not speak of zero-budget options too, since they are thoroughly analyzed in another discussion.

Still, this is a way too general question. Most of us have specific needs, and you are welcome to specify them here for your choice. 

In my case, the specifics is: Not important: classic musical notation facilities; video.


1 Advanced MIDI sequencer and editor; color highlighting of different channels in a MIDI score; editing of articulations;   

2) Simultaneous manual performance of several VSTi from 2 or 3 MIDI keyboards;

3) Immediate access to a large number of instruments in (2) a la Makie control knobs;

4) Zero-latency in (2);

5) Post-production facilities (mixing and at least some form of mastering).

6) Smooth learning curve.

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  • Reaper is as good (almost) as cubase 5,6,7 and shareware. Alas, it has all the main and important ingredients. :) And it is shareware! (But fully functioinal without paying for it, something one should do.)

    A good place to start for beginners as well wanting to set up a cheap studio. You can run VSTi:s in it. (The cubase format.)

  • Thanks Ray, I'lll try to evaluate it. What MIDI keyboard can you recommend, which would allow a real-time patch change (via Makie?) and support afer-touch?

    Thanks Per, I have some experience with Reaper. I need a really easy-to-use Makie supporting setup.


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