Reaper DAW, will it deliver all the "goods" in multi track recording?

Hi
I recently bought the license to use Reaper. Upon comparing to Sony Acid Music DAW, I realized that the equalization high end for Reaper was much higher than the DAW for Sony Acid Music. That, to me was a plus. Again my question for use of this software is would I need a multi channel mixer also? Some people have said that the sound quality can be deeper and richer if a good mixer is added to the equipment, implying that the sound being processed first by a good mixer and then sent to the DAW would give an overall nicer, deeper richer recording. I have heard that "DAW only" recordings can be a little thin, especially for vocals. Please tell me what opinion to believe. THanks
 

VomitHatSteve

Hat STYLE. Not contents.
The DAW software receives a digital signal from your input device (whether that's a mixer, your PCs onboard audio, or an audio interface).
Whether or not the signal is nicer, richer, or deeper has little to do with the software. Unless you add effects to it, the software will simply save whatever data the audio device gives it.
Now, an external mixer will almost certainly sound better than your onboard audio device. But it's not likely to sound significantly different from a non-mixing external interface of equivalent quality. The mixing aspect of it, only forces you to make more decisions about EQ, etc. earlier in the process. But those exact same decisions can be made in software later.
 

gecko zzed

Grumpy Mod
I would say the difference between in-the-box and outboard mixing is largely imaginary for all except those with higher end equipment. DAWS sounding 'thin' is one of those persistent myths that have taken on a life of their own. Reaper is a good DAW to choose. It is powerful, flexible, and fully-featured, but is very lean on CPU and disk space. It can deliver as deep and rich a mix as your skills and experise will allow you to get.
 

rob aylestone

Well-known member
Speakers.
The only thing that changes between my different listening environments is the speakers.I'm lying really, becase the computers, interfaces, amplifiers, room, software are all different - but the thing that really matters is the speakers. They ALL have a sound of their own. They all respond differently to the rooms. I've been doing some work this morning with two computers, Audcity, Audition, Cubase Sound Forge, Spectral Layers and Adobe Premier - stuff going in and out - using an old Lexicon interface on the iMac and a multitrack Tascam on the PC. The amp and speakers run from the Tascam. The Lexicon goes into the Tascam. Pressing play on any of these things has the same characteristic sound - I'm flipping the material from place to place. I'm using 5" RCF monitors. They sound really nice, but are limited in bass response. When I get home into the studio there I know I'll have to revisit the mix to check the bass end, because the studio monitors go lower. Same software, different computers and different interface.

I'm certain that the different components do have a different sound, but it is so minor a difference I cannot hear it - while speaker differences jump out at you.
 

TalismanRich

Well-known member
I don't understand how people make such mountains out of the molehill differences in electronics. Transducers are the most nonlinear items in any chain.
 

Papanate

Active member
Hi
I recently bought the license to use Reaper. Upon comparing to Sony Acid Music DAW, I realized that the equalization high end for Reaper was much higher than the DAW for Sony Acid Music. That, to me was a plus. Again my question for use of this software is would I need a multi channel mixer also? Some people have said that the sound quality can be deeper and richer if a good mixer is added to the equipment, implying that the sound being processed first by a good mixer and then sent to the DAW would give an overall nicer, deeper richer recording. I have heard that "DAW only" recordings can be a little thin, especially for vocals. Please tell me what opinion to believe. THanksWhat interface

What interface to you own?
 

LazerBeakShiek

AKA Optimus Prime LEGO Vampire
, implying that the sound being processed first by a good mixer and then sent to the DAW would give an overall nicer, deeper richer recording. I have heard that "DAW only" recordings can be a little thin, especially for vocals.
On my hardware, I notice it sounds better too. I have attributed this to the different rack units and 1/4" recording medium. The mixer does an excellent job with analog signals . Guitar , bass, vocals, analog synths...try a digital workstation synth and it to me sounds thin. Playing through Big PA speakers analog instrument and mic inputs sound complete.

Monitors are too small to make the fundamental tones. "Some speakers or amps may not be capable of producing really low frequencies. As a result, the low fundamentals of bass notes may vanish. But, because you can hear the overtones, you still perceive the right low note"

It looks to me that the signals through the interface and into the DAW needs to be EQ'd or dynamically filtered back to what the analog machine does.

The DAW and interface will handle all those modern VST samplers and VST amp sims with crystal clarity.

There is a listening difference. The equipment is different.

You say, each DAW has a different sound? Why am I not surprised.
 
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rob aylestone

Well-known member
I'd just have to disagree - Each interface might have a different sound, but with good ones, it is very small, and I'd go so far as to suggest that any DAW that changes the sound is worth avoiding, if they exist. Once the audio is digital, then in to out should be totally transparent - the digital data stream if it's doing no processing should be the same. A plug in from a third party would sound the same in Reaper, Cubase, Logic, Audacity, Protools.
 
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