Posts Tagged ‘Cakewalk’


Cakewalk’s Entry Level Music Creation Software for Windows Gets Major Polishing

April 22, 2009


Cakewalk today did something quite unorthodox for the company: it launched a product on Facebook.

The results are what clearly aim to be a GarageBand killer for Windows users. Music Creator had always, quietly, been a big hit for Cakewalk: it’s cheap, entry-level software for the PC, which has the potential to reach a big audience of computer users. But the software itself was nothing to brag about, with a dated-looking interface.

Music Creator 5 looks stunningly different. The arrangement window has the familiar, GarageBand and ACID-style loop arrangement window. But there are additions you might expect in a bigger DAW: quick in-line access to track parameters, video preview frames at the top, elaborate time displays and editing tools. There’s also a sophisticated-looking mixing mode with graphical EQs and other options.

Cakewalk MusicCreator

There’s also quite a lot of instrumental and effects content for a $35 app. You get preset playback features – a bit like what you get in Kore Player, down to the pre-mapped 4-8 knobs and 4 trigger buttons – with 150 instruments. There’s the rather sophisticated Studio Instruments Drums for some acoustic and electronic drum parts, making it easier to actually program your own patterns rather than rely on loops.

Cakewalk also includes easy Flash-based music player creators, so you can share your finished tracks easily on the Web, and notation publishing features with tablature and guitar chord support.

In other words, you get the power of what might once have been a flagship Cakewalk DAW, for 35 bucks. (Windows-only) Some of the power options may actually be a bit intimidating to beginners – recently, I’ve heard that complaint even applied to the comparatively minimal GarageBand.


Cakewalk’s clever Publisher tool makes it a snap to export directly to an embeddable player.

As far as value, though, there’s a whole lot in this box, and a nice balance between looping features and the sort of acoustic drums and notation and sharing features that could appeal to bands just starting to add a computer. I actually think the integrated interface in Steinberg’s rival Sequel is a bit more efficient and runs on the Mac, too, but there’s quite a lot of added-in functionality in Music Creator that makes it broader in scope, and some of that added power may be a deal-maker depending on your needs.


Cakewalk® Announces Free SONAR 8.3 Update

February 11, 2009

Free update adds new features and continues company’s mission to provide timely updates to best support our customers…

Cakewalk has announced a free update for SONAR 8 Producer and SONAR 8 Studio. The 8.3 Update will be available in February as free a download for registered SONAR 8 customers.
The SONAR 8.3 Update adds new usability enhancements, engine optimizations, classic Roland® sample content for Dimension Pro and Dimension LE, and drum kits for Session Drummer 2. In addition, the update addresses various performance issues reported by customers after SONAR 8’s initial release.

The SONAR 8.3 update will include:

Snap Presets: SONAR has always provided flexibility in snap settings, allowing for audio and MIDI edits to specific musical or absolute times (to snap points, or by time intervals), clip events, transients, and markers. SONAR 8.3 introduces user-defined ‘Snap Presets’ that can instantly recall all of these settings in one click, providing a fast, efficient way to incorporate many edit type combinations into your workflow.

External Inserts: Allow you to insert outboard gear into your projects, while providing sample accurate delay compensation. New optimizations for SONAR 8.3: improved sync when mixing external hardware with other plug-ins that require delay compensation; multiple external inserts can be used in the same project; improved stability on multiprocessing machines; and improved sync while looping. The “ping” test has also been improved to consistently return sample accurate offsets without any further adjustments.

Optimized multiprocessor load balancing: More efficient handling of multithread processing for improved CPU utilization and better overall performance.

Aim Assist enhancements: SONAR’s visual guide for precision editing can now follow snap settings or automatically align to clip starts and ends.

Vintage synth sounds for Dimension Pro: Original samples of the legendary Roland SH-101, TB-303, and VP-330, along with classic sounds of the Arp Odyssey, Moog Minimoog and Sequential Circuits Prophet5.

Classic Drum kits for Session Drummer 2: Genre-defining original samples of the classic Roland TR-707, TR-727, TR-808, and TR-909 drum synthesizers, along with kits from Sequential Circuits Drumtraks and Linn Electronics LinnDrum.

Guitar Rig 3 LE and TruePianos Amber Module updates: Offering support for Windows Vista x64.

A comprehensive list of all feature enhancements and refinement of the user experience will be posted when the SONAR 8.3 Update is released in February, 2009. All of the new features found in the SONAR 8.3 Updates are a direct result of active dialog with our users. Cakewalk’s delivery of timely product updates is an extension of Cakewalk’s commitment in providing the very best in product support for our customers.

The 8.3 Update for Windows XP and native Vista (32-bit & 64-bit) versions of SONAR will be available as a free download to all registered SONAR 8 customers at  February, 2009.

View Cakewalk Sonar 8 at Dolphin


Cakewalk announces SONAR V-Studio 700

October 13, 2008

Cakewalk has announced SONAR V-Studio 700, which Cakewalk describes as “the ultimate solution for music production”. SONAR V-Studio 700 represents the first and flagship product in the next generation V-Studio line of Cakewalk branded hardware and software solutions. With SONAR V-Studio 700 two music technology leaders have combined the best of their hardware and software engineering to address the growing needs of modern music professionals.

Roland pioneered the concept of combining hard disk recording with an ergonomic control surface. Now, a new generation of V-Studio builds on its legacy in new and innovative ways-combining Roland’s renowned hardware expertise with the power and flexibility of Cakewalk’s SONAR Producer DAW. SONAR V-Studio 700 addresses the gap between under-powered “budget” solutions and over-priced competitive solutions by offering a compelling, feature-rich music production system that is accessible to a broad range of users. And beyond that, the forward thinking design of SONAR V-Studio 700 addresses the needs of post production professionals by incorporating video and image hardware control functionality.

SONAR V-Studio 700

SONAR V-Studio 700 includes:

  • SONAR 8 Producer + the full version of Rapture
  • The VS-700C V-Studio Console
  • The VS-700R V-Studio I/O
  • The Integrated Roland Fantom VS hardware synthesizer
  • Direct control of EDIROL video hardware such as the DV-7 line of nonlinear video editors and other hardware with V-Link support

“The original Roland V-Studio and VS products were groundbreaking in that they provided powerful digital recording capabilities to musicians with an easy to use hardware interface,” said Hidekazu Tanaka, President of Roland Corporation “With the advent of PC-based recording, times and musician’s needs have changed, but a few things have stayed the same. Musicians still want something easy to use that offers superior sound. In working with Cakewalk on the next generation V-Studio we wanted to create a recording solution that kept those goals in mind while innovating in new and exciting ways. The integration of video hardware control is one of those ways, deep hardware-based control of PC-based editing is another. We are happy to announce that SONAR V-Studio has met and exceeded those goals. It is the perfect successor to the V-Studio legacy.”

“Over the years, there have been a handful of seminal products in the history of music technology. The original V-Studio was one of them. Each breakthrough product has given musicians control over more aspects of their creative process. First they were able to do their own recording. These days it is normal for musicians to do their own editing, mixing, and mastering. And now more musicians are producing their own video,” commented Greg Hendershott, Founder and CEO of Cakewalk, Inc. “When Roland and Cakewalk started the SONAR V-Studio 700 project, it was with the vision that, if we combined our strengths, we could introduce the next breakthrough product to the world. I believe that years from now, people will look back on SONAR V-Studio 700 as one of those milestones.”

Finely-tuned and tightly integrated hardware and software

SONAR V-Studio 700 matches SONAR 8 Producer with the VS-700C V-Studio Console multifunction control surface and VS-700R V-Studio I/O audio interface, which includes an onboard Roland Fantom VS Hardware synthesizer.

The VS-700C V-Studio Console provides fast and comprehensive hands-on access to all of the power of SONAR 8 Producer, including for the first time extensive editing operations. It also provides dedicated digital control of the VS-700R V-Studio I/O and with the press of a button the VS-700C can switch functionality to control any V-Link compatible video and image hardware including the Edirol DV-7 line of direct linear video editing systems.

The VS-700R V-Studio I/O is an extremely capable 20×26, 24-bit/192kHz audio interface with high-quality converters and pre-amps that are the perfect complement to SONAR’s industry leading 64-bit end-to-end internal audio quality.

The VS-700R also houses an unexpected but welcome surprise with its onboard Roland Fantom VS hardware synthesizer. The Fantom VS seamlessly integrates its inspiring soundest and synthesis directly into SONAR’s workflow as a “Hardware VSTi” with essentially zero latency or CPU load. In addition, the Fantom VS can be further expanded with Roland SuperNATURAL sounds through an ARX Expansion Board slot located in the VS-700R.

Taken as a whole, SONAR V-Studio 700 offers the “feel” of working in a traditional studio, but in a way that takes advantage of everything modern technology has to offer. Together these features represent the best in hardware/software control, integration, and sound quality of any complete DAW solution on the market today-and all at an affordable price.

SONAR 8 Producer + Rapture

SONAR 8 Producer is the software heart of the next generation V-Studio. SONAR 8 Producer gives you what you need for recording, composing, editing, mixing, and mastering. SONAR 8 offers innovations that matter, from exclusive features to ignite creativity and perfect tracks, to groundbreaking technologies that always keep you in control, all backed by the industry’s leading 64-bit audio quality. And SONAR 8 Producer delivers go-to production tools with the best collection of virtual instruments, mixing, and mastering effects found in any DAW.

Key features of SONAR 8 Producer:

  • Complete DAW environment – from creation to delivery.
  • Tight integration with V-Studio hardware.
  • Best audio quality in industry – 64-bit end-to-end.
  • Inspiring tools for creative production.
  • Fast and accurate audio & MIDI editing.
  • Powerful vocal processing with Roland V-Vocal.
  • Comprehensive mixing environment.
  • Deep levels of mix, edit, and instrument control through ACT.
  • Unlimited tracks, inserts, effects, and busses.
  • High track, low latency performance.
  • 49 effects/14 instruments including Dimension Pro.
  • Linear phase mastering plug-ins.
  • Flexible import/export for final project delivery or collaboration with other studios.
  • Also included in SONAR V-Studio 700 is the full version of Cakewalk’s MIPA award-winning Rapture synthesizer. Rapture provides modern sounds to fuel pop, dance, hip hop, and electronic music production through a unique combination of power, elegance, control, and professional sound programming.

VS-700C V-Studio Console

The hardware centerpiece is the VS-700C V-Studio Console. Because the VS-700C was designed jointly by Cakewalk and Roland, it offers deeper integration into SONAR’s editing and mixing capabilities than any off the shelf control surface.

The VS-700C sets itself apart from other competitive hardware control surfaces with a dedicated implementation of ACT (Active Controller Technology). ACT dramatically changes the way users interface with SONAR by automatically remapping controls to whatever has the focus.

VS-700C Key Features:

  • Nine 100mm touch sensitive, motorized faders arranged in a bank of eight channel strips with a master control section.
  • Users can tab between fader banks and also lock specific channels offering flexibility in your mixing control.
  • Access Panel section provides one-button functionality to call up different views and utilities, and allows for custom assignments from over 45 SONAR commands.
  • Dedicated section of 12 continuous push-button rotary encoders which can be used for EQ, Sends, or ACT control:
    • When controlling EQ, the knobs edit four stages of parametric EQ gain, frequency, and Q for whichever channel has the focus.
    • When configured for ACT, encoders automatically remap to control effect, instrument, or mix parameters of whatever view or plug-in has focus within SONAR.
  • Full featured Transport.
  • Jog and shuttle wheels and X/Y cursors for project navigation, scrubbing and zoom.
  • Full surround implementation with Joystick Panner, F/R Balance, LFE Send, and Width controls.
  • V-Link integration switches VS-700C from controlling SONAR to video and imaging hardware including the Edirol DV-7 line of direct linear video editing systems.
  • Multifunction T-bar for surround F/R balance, X-Ray, and video hardware control, and other parameters via ACT.
  • Convenient audio input at the front of the console with switchable Hi-Z setting for recording high impedance sources such as electric guitar.
  • A 2×13 LCD display that shows track names, parameter values, and markers.
  • 7 Segment LCD display for time code and now time position.
  • Responsive metering for each channel and the master section.
  • Monitor section provides control over the stereo mains, sub mix, and two sets of headphones.

VS-700R V-Studio I/O

The VS-700R V-Studio I/O audio interface was designed to provide the perfect complement to SONAR’s industry leading internal 64-bit audio quality, and to provide extensive I/O options to take advantage of SONAR’s flexible bussing capabilities and integration with external hardware.

Preamps and converters are the gateway to your system, and the VS-Studio 700 includes the very best mic preamps and convertor technology that Roland has to offer. The preamps are also digitally-controlled which lets you adjust preamp gain from the same control surface where you mix, and save gain settings as presets. Being able to recall individual settings for each mic can be a real time-saver during a session.

VS-700R Key Features:

  • Low-latency USB 2.0 24-bit, 192 kHz audio interface.
  • 20-inputs/26 outputs (18/24 simultaneous).
  • Digital effects on input for compression, LF Cut, and Pad.
  • Eight analog inputs (XLR or 1/4″ balanced/unbalanced) with +48v phantom power.
  • Ten 1/4″ balanced/unbalanced outputs.
  • XLR main monitor outs.
  • 1/4″ balanced/unbalanced stereo sub outs.
  • Digital I/O (AES/EBU, S/PDIF, ADAT).
  • MIDI I/O.
  • External sync through two digital options and Wordclock I/O.
  • Front panel metering to supplement the metering on the VS-700C.

Roland Fantom VS.

The VS-700R also includes the Roland Fantom VS hardware synthesizer which adds to the full complement of inspiring synthesizers that are included in SONAR 8. Fantom VS operates as a hardware VSTi instrument with complete access over all parameters accessible via a software plug-in interface and editor within SONAR. Because the Fantom VS is DSP powered within the VS-700R interface, it offers essentially zero latency and CPU loading. In addition to the exciting creative possibilities provided by the 1,400 Fantom VS patches, there is a slot for an ARX expansion board for adding specialized Roland SuperNatural sounds for particular projects.

Easy connection and installation

The V-Studio experience starts with a simple two cable connection: one cable connects the VS-700c controller with the VS-700r interface and then a second standard USB cable from the interface completes the VS-700 system to the computer. The included SONAR software, drivers, control plug-ins, and numerous project templates are easily installed and SONAR V-Studio 700 will be production ready in minutes.

Expandable I/O & synth capability

SONAR V-Studio 700 customers who have more extensive I/O requirements can purchase an additional VS-700R V-Studio I/O module, available separately. The addition of another VS-700R will increase I/O capability of their SONAR V-Studio to 41/56 (37/48 simultaneous). A second VS-700R also doubles your synthesis power by making two Roland Fantom VS and two ARX expansion slots accessible from within SONAR.

Pricing and availability

The SONAR V-Studio 700 system ships with SONAR 8 Producer, Rapture software synthesizer, the VS-700C V-Studio Console, the VS-700R V-Studio I/O with onboard Fantom VS synth, cables, and user guide.

SONAR V-Studio 700 will be available February 2009 and will be able to be experienced at select music and sound retailers and purchased for around $4,000. Cakewalk will be offering existing SONAR 8 Producer customers a $200 rebate on SONAR V-Studio 700, details will be made available at

Pricing and availability outside the U.S.

SONAR V-Studio’s included SONAR 8 Producer software is available in English, German, French, Spanish and Italian; and with printed documentation in English, German, or French; Spanish and Italian electronic quick start guides are contained in all versions. SONAR V-Studio 700 is available through Roland and Edirol distribution partners and select retailers worldwide. Local prices may vary, please check with your local Roland or Edirol distributor, or SONAR V-Studio 700 retailer for more details.