Reaper is a DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) created by the company Cockos, which has become a very popular option in the world of professional audio. If you’re looking for what a DAW could be to start your production journey, Reaper could be the answer.
A DAW is a basic tool in music production, as these programs allow us to record, edit, mix and master digital audio and MIDI. Therefore, they are the main software for any audio, music, and post-production work for film, video, podcast, etc.
There are many options for both PC and Mac: Logic Pro, Cubase, Ableton Live, Pro Tools, Reason, etc. The offer is very extended and sometimes it can be confusing to have so many options.
Know the advantages and disadvantages of Reaper.
REAPER has many advantages, below I will mention the main ones.
Compatibility: One of the main advantages of Reaper is that it works under Windows (32 and 64 bits), macOS, and even Linux. So no matter what operating system you have, REAPER can even be installed on computers running Windows XP!
Price: This is another of the points that have made it very popular. REAPER is a very cheap program ($60 USD) when most other DAWs with similar features cost at least 5 times more! In addition to this, Reaper offers the option of using it for a 60-day free trial with all its functionality.
Audio options: Reaper has tons of options for editing and processing audio since you can import and export almost any type of audio file. You can use VST plugins, ReaPlugs and JSFX, which is a special type of plugin that can even be created by the user. This means that if you like programming, you can edit or create your own plugins to use within Reaper. Furthermore, Reaper is one of the few DAWs that are ready to work with 360º immersive sound.
Video support: Reaper also has support for video. This will allow you to be able to edit the audio of your videos and perform functions such as audio cleaning and editing, intelligibility improvement, error and noise correction, background music, sound effects, and more.
Control surfaces: This DAW can be used with control surfaces that support protocols such as Baby HUI, MCU, and FaderPort, among others. This means you can control buttons, knobs, and faders using your control surface, giving you a much more organic experience when mixing.
Personalization: One of Reaper’s hallmarks is its ability to customize. You can assign keyboard shortcuts to any function you need, create macros and templates for repetitive work, change colors, skins, and settings to suit your studio, and even create scripts that perform automated functions. Undoubtedly, there is no other DAW with the possibilities that REAPER offers to adjust its options to suit you.
Stability: Reaper is a very stable DAW that doesn’t take up too much disk space. This makes it ideal for modest computers that do not have large resources.
Reaper doesn’t have too many drawbacks, however here are a few:
Popularity: Despite having a very large user community worldwide, it is not the most popular DAW and therefore it is not that common to find it in recording studios. If you need to collaborate with other musicians and share sessions, make sure they also use REAPER to make the file-sharing process easier.
Options: The customization options can also be a disadvantage, as it makes it difficult to standardize keyboard shortcuts or custom functions.
Additional content: Most DAWs include different options for sound libraries, virtual instruments, and plugins. This is not the case with REAPER. Due to its low cost, it has basic plugins and processing but definitely insufficient for high-end professional work. There are a lot of free plugins that the same community has published, however, you will need to purchase additional plugins or instruments for complex music mixing or production work.
As we can see, Reaper has many advantages and can be a great option to start in the world of DAWs.
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