Ardour or Reaper (or something else)?


New member
Hello there.

I am tempted to have a go at a bit of recording, but am a total novice to it - so would prefer something not too expensive, for the time being.

I know it is a very subjective question but which DAW should I use?

I wanted (if possible) to avoid just installing and trying out lots of alternatives, as it might end up confusing me.

Is there any sort of consensus as to which is the best, out of the two? E.g. support, ease of use, etc?

Thanks very much.


Reaper user here. Never heard of Ardour before, here's what a google search finds: In the question “What are the best DAWs? ” Reaper is ranked 2nd while Ardour is ranked 10th. The most important reason people chose Reaper is: As well as making your own themes, you can configure the Reaper interface to best suit your needs. There are no limitations to how customizable or programmable Reaper truly is."


Well-known member
Audacity has its uses, but as a multitrack recording system, it is sorely lacking. It is more of a audio/wav editor. If you are using an audio interface, you can't use an ASIO driver, unless you know how to include and recompile with ASIO support. Its an economic thing... they won't pay the licensing to Steinberg for ASIO support.

Reaper is far more complete, and you can try it out for free. A license if very reasonable and good for two full versions (major releases are generally 2-3 years apart.) The old versions will continue to run as long as you have a computer and can be run on multiple systems. The support community is great. Between the Cuckos forums and Youtube, there's info on just about any topic.

Ardour is open source, free and should be pretty capable. I don't know how strong the support community is for it. If you have some reasonable tech ability, you'll probably be fine. If you need someone to hold your hand and walk you through stuff, Reaper is probably a better choice.

After playing with entry level ProTools and Cubase versions, I settled on Reaper years ago.