How To Choose A DAW: 7 Of The Best DAWs For Every Musical Need

This post originally appeared on Flypaper by our friends at Soundfly.

Whether you’re working out of a home studio or a small project studio, your Digital Audio Workstation (or, DAW) is probably the single most important part of your setup. It’s the bridge of your musical Starship Enterprise, containing and co-ordinating all the software and hardware you use to create and communicate each of your decisions. It’s no surprise then, that much like the fights that people have over Nintendo/Xbox/Playstation or iOS/Android, the world of audio production is rife with software fan service and forum flame wars (harmless, of course, but they can be quite harsh!)…

DaveHow To Choose A DAW: 7 Of The Best DAWs For Every Musical Need
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10 Tips for Creating Better Mixes: A Five-Part Video Series

Can 2017 be the year your mixing game steps it up a few notches? Maybe some insider advice from a GRAMMY winning mixing engineer will provide the boost you need. Our friends at iZotope created a five-part mixing masterclass entitled Mix Resolutions: 10 Tips for Creating Better Mixes. It features Enrique Gonzalez Müller (GRAMMY winning mixing engineer, professor at Berklee College of Music) and Jonathan Wyner (GRAMMY nominated mastering engineer, professor at Berklee College of Music). And we have the exclusive videos for you right here, for the next five weeks.

Dave10 Tips for Creating Better Mixes: A Five-Part Video Series
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What Is Mastering? Here’s What Every Musician Needs To Know

What is mastering and why do we do it? This is an important question to ask for any indie or DIY artist, and we’ve brought in the team at iZotope to help answer it. Mastering is that last moment when you can alter, enhance, or edit the sound of a recording, and since it’s the final step, it is the most critical from the standpoint of assessing the sound.

What is mastering?

First and foremost, we want our music to sound as good as possible. It means we need someone with the ability to tweak what we have and fully develop the sound to its maximum quality. That’s where mastering comes in. Here are some things that need to be considered in mastering:

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Gear Talk: Ellie Herring

Kentucky-based electronic artist Ellie Herring has been praised by the likes of Paper Magazine, Pigeons and Planes, and Gorilla vs. Bear for her hard-hitting beats and airy vocals. With a highly-anticipated EP due out this fall we caught up with Ellie to learn about her versatile style, go-to gear, music production advice, and more.

Hey Ellie! Introduce yourself.
Hey guys!  I’m Ellie Herring, & currently I’m sitting in my backyard in Kentucky on my second cup of coffee… & also have a browser tab open to a page with directions on “how to make the best iced coffee at home.”  I didn’t get a lot of sleep last night, not because I’m an insomniac, but because I’ve recently discovered The Rockford Files & can’t stop watching.  Have you ever read James Garner’s life story? It’s amazing.

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Gear Talk: We Are Temporary

Fresh off a tour in Germany, Mark Roberts of the electronic-goth project We Are Temporary, chatted with us about his new record deal with Trisol, the equipment he can’t live without, sound-pairing, and more.

How did you first get involved as a producer and what elements drew you in?
My mom was an opera singer and my dad a classically trained organist, so I fell into music pretty early. My first attempts at production probably occurred around the time I was 14. By then, I had been playing guitar for a few years, got my first synth around 12, and had fallen head over heals in love with computers—Amiga 500, early 386 PCs, amber screens, MS DOS, etc.

Around 1992, my world was turned upside down when Steinberg’s Cubase came out on Windows 3.0 and I discovered the world of MIDI. Computers, of course, still couldn’t record audio back then, and so, after pestering my Mom for months on end, she finally got me a 4-track Tascam Portastudio for Christmas, with me combining elementary midi-programed drums and synths with some very rudimentary guitar power chords and pubescent vocals. The results were almost certainly awful, haha, but the damage was done and I was having the time of my life! 23 years and a handful of technology innovations later, I’m basically still doing the same thing, still having the time of my life 🙂

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Gear Talk: Avi Sic

Performing over 300 shows a year, Chicago-based DJ Avi Sic has shared the stage with the likes of Calvin Harris, Icona Pop, and works with top brands including AllSaints and Nike. With residencies in Chicago, NYC, and Miami, Avi Sic is a driving force in today’s club scene. Read on to learn about her go-to gear, how she approaches music production, and more.

Hey Avi Sic, thanks for chatting with us! Introduce yourself. You were a radio DJ at KISS FM, mentored by DJWS (Lady Gaga’s Grammy-nominated producer), and have shared the stage with the likes of Calvin Harris, Diplo, and more. (Such a rad background!). How did you get started in music?
As a kid i was obsessed with space and music – my parents wouldn’t send me to space camp so i concentrated on the music . I took up instruments at an early age and by high school I was Djing and playing college parties. I wasn’t certain as to what i wanted to do as an adult – DJing professionally kinda fell into my lap. I took sound engineering classes in college and messed around with the basics of the the early 2000’s. Pro tools, fruityloops, garageband… After a few years I was supporting myself solely off gigs and basically continue to network my way up and up.

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Gear Talk: Lauren Flax

As a talented DJ, songwriter, and producer Lauren Flax has worked with the likes of Sia, Le Tigre, Fischerspooner, and is part of the Brooklyn trip-hop duo, CREEP. With a single coming out with Fritz Pop Tv with remixes from The Carry Nation and Hannah Holland, an EP due out this summer, and a European summer tour, we chatted with Lauren about the equipment she takes on the road, what advice she’d give someone who wants to get into music production, and more.

Hey Lauren, stoked to have you be part of our series! Give us a little intro to Lauren FlaxHow has being a Detroit native and growing up in the Chicago house scene influenced your style?
Everything. It’s a pretty special thing to be surrounded by the best of the best in terms of house and techno. I grew up knowing the biggest influencers, and that definitely put a spark in my belly. I wanted to be a part of it.

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