Digital Performer users, I want you to convince me to switch to your DAW.

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It seem's like the most convoluted daw out there, why do you use it? what make's it better than other daws? What's attractive about it compared to other daws? I use cubase mainly, convince me to switch from cubase...

I recently bought a MOTU interface and checked out their daw that I never hear of and heard some people saying it has some unique or advanced features so they still use it

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I do like the look of it, certainly much better than the new Sonar which was just released (Subscription model, no less).

Has anyone heard good or bad things about DP's stability? I recall that it used to be popular with film composers, but that was a while back... How's it fare on PC these days?

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Appreciate the link... However, anyone contemplating a purchase should be advised that the version shown there is v9, which is two versions old. Obviously, demo the latest before you buy, people!

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Digital Performer is a good choice if you want to stand out from the mainstream. It has quite a lot of options, some of them quite practical. Unfortunately, my experience is that there are quite a lot of inconsistencies, and if some of them are fixed, some new thing breaks. I gave up, there are more stable options.

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HREQ wrote: Sun Jun 09, 2024 3:39 pm It seem's like the most convoluted daw out there, why do you use it? what make's it better than other daws? What's attractive about it compared to other daws? I use cubase mainly, convince me to switch from cubase...

I recently bought a MOTU interface and checked out their daw that I never hear of and heard some people saying it has some unique or advanced features so they still use it
So first off, it's fair to say I'm biased, easily the most vocal user of DP on KVR. The main selling point to DP is somewhat similar to Cubase, in that it's in the category of old school DAWs that offer a swiss army approach. DP, Logic, Sonar, Cubase, Reaper all share in this approach. There are of course huge differences between them all.

So the main thing that separates out DP from the rest is the Song Chunk, or the concept of Chunks in general. Chunks are full songs, and/or racks of virtual instruments Aux's etc. It's not really a precise explanation, but it's akin to being able to open up as many songs in a single project as your computer can handle. People use this feature to score films, compile albums, perform live with each Chunk as a separate song in your set etc. etc.

So to me the advantages of DP over the other DAWs are it's flexibility, and it's usability. I've spent a couple years in Reaper and Logic, owned Live for 20 years etc. I've bounced around and I always end up back in DP. Logic IMO started getting constrained by UX choices Apple was making to make it easy for beginers, which is fine, if the option to use older methods hadn't been removed. Case in point is track show/hide features changed around v8 of Logic to be exactly the same between the arrangement and mixer windows. The obvious disadvantage of this is there are tracks in a song that you're never really needing to mix, and tracks you're never needing to arrange, and DP has a super fast tracks selector for showing and hiding tracks with extensive shortcuts etc. This might be fixed in Logic now, but it was IMO a sign of how things were going to be in Logic and I went back to DP.

With Reaper it's the opposite issue for me, the extensibility and customizability of Reaper is great, but I spent months adjusting the MIDI piano roll editor to be anything like useable and I still never really loved working in it. It has some great advanced features and it's coded tighter than any DAW I know of, almost bug free, but it's just, not, fun to work in IMO.

I'm not that familiar with Cubase, only maybe a months worth of messing around with it over the course of 20 years, but it's always struck me as similar to DP at least in the respect of being an "all around" DAW that gets all the new features almost as soon as they appear in other DAWs. Comparing the two is somewhat difficult, but my impression is DP is more or less some stage between Reaper and Cubase, there is some template building, areas to learn, odd search functions, and customizability like Reaper, but it does tend to present more built in choices than Reaper. So built in Clips function like Live, Logic etc. Articulation mapping like Cubase. Extensive MPE, movie, score, MIDI support.

The big difference is definitely Chunks though, the idea of having a single open project that includes sequences that are completely different songs, with their own or shared plugins, extended or reduced remixes of the same song, the MIDI and bounced to audio version of the song, an entire 90 minute score to a film. The verse, chorus, break or variations of a song in different "chunks" etc. etc. A minor difference is two views of the linear arrangement - Tracks and the Sequence Editor, some bouncing between the two happens, but it's not anything that really strikes me as that major. If you are on Mac OS it supports AU, VST and VST3, which means a higher chance that one standard passes validation and works etc.

This is personal, but I think it counts, they respond to tech support emails, and there are weekly 90 minute webinars that have been going on ever since the pandemic started. One of the main teachers and reps for MOTU is openly available every week to ask questions about DP and learn some aspect of it. It's a smaller independent company like Bitwig and personally I feel that counts. They do seem to listen to peoples requests and attempt to add in features or fix bugs. They're more approachable via the webinars and Tech Links than Apple with Logic, even Bitwig it's almost a form letter when you send in a bug report.

There are mixed reviews of the Windows version, IMO it really depends on your collection of VSTs or configuration, because some folks are happy using it and a few are vocally antagonistic towards DP. The Windows users I know that love it don't go online, because they flatly don't have the patience to deal with the haters. :shrug:

Anyway, I like supporting underdogs with great ideas like Bitwig and DP. Maybe that's silly, but I don't think so.

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I tried DP years ago, and found it to be one of the most crash-prone DAWs I ever used. Dunno why.
KVR S1-Thread | The Intrancersonic-Design Source > Program Resource | Studio One Resource | Music Gallery | 2D / 3D Sci-fi Art | GUI Projects | Animations | Photography | Film Docs | 80's Cartoons | Games | Music Hardware |

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A Friend years ago said to me knowing my great distaste for instability "Don't even think about trying it!"...(Windows version)...

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machinesworking wrote: Mon Jun 10, 2024 12:28 pm
HREQ wrote: Sun Jun 09, 2024 3:39 pm It seem's like the most convoluted daw out there, why do you use it? what make's it better than other daws? What's attractive about it compared to other daws? I use cubase mainly, convince me to switch from cubase...

I recently bought a MOTU interface and checked out their daw that I never hear of and heard some people saying it has some unique or advanced features so they still use it
So first off, it's fair to say I'm biased, easily the most vocal user of DP on KVR. The main selling point to DP is somewhat similar to Cubase, in that it's in the category of old school DAWs that offer a swiss army approach. DP, Logic, Sonar, Cubase, Reaper all share in this approach. There are of course huge differences between them all.

So the main thing that separates out DP from the rest is the Song Chunk, or the concept of Chunks in general. Chunks are full songs, and/or racks of virtual instruments Aux's etc. It's not really a precise explanation, but it's akin to being able to open up as many songs in a single project as your computer can handle. People use this feature to score films, compile albums, perform live with each Chunk as a separate song in your set etc. etc.

So to me the advantages of DP over the other DAWs are it's flexibility, and it's usability. I've spent a couple years in Reaper and Logic, owned Live for 20 years etc. I've bounced around and I always end up back in DP. Logic IMO started getting constrained by UX choices Apple was making to make it easy for beginers, which is fine, if the option to use older methods hadn't been removed. Case in point is track show/hide features changed around v8 of Logic to be exactly the same between the arrangement and mixer windows. The obvious disadvantage of this is there are tracks in a song that you're never really needing to mix, and tracks you're never needing to arrange, and DP has a super fast tracks selector for showing and hiding tracks with extensive shortcuts etc. This might be fixed in Logic now, but it was IMO a sign of how things were going to be in Logic and I went back to DP.

With Reaper it's the opposite issue for me, the extensibility and customizability of Reaper is great, but I spent months adjusting the MIDI piano roll editor to be anything like useable and I still never really loved working in it. It has some great advanced features and it's coded tighter than any DAW I know of, almost bug free, but it's just, not, fun to work in IMO.

I'm not that familiar with Cubase, only maybe a months worth of messing around with it over the course of 20 years, but it's always struck me as similar to DP at least in the respect of being an "all around" DAW that gets all the new features almost as soon as they appear in other DAWs. Comparing the two is somewhat difficult, but my impression is DP is more or less some stage between Reaper and Cubase, there is some template building, areas to learn, odd search functions, and customizability like Reaper, but it does tend to present more built in choices than Reaper. So built in Clips function like Live, Logic etc. Articulation mapping like Cubase. Extensive MPE, movie, score, MIDI support.

The big difference is definitely Chunks though, the idea of having a single open project that includes sequences that are completely different songs, with their own or shared plugins, extended or reduced remixes of the same song, the MIDI and bounced to audio version of the song, an entire 90 minute score to a film. The verse, chorus, break or variations of a song in different "chunks" etc. etc. A minor difference is two views of the linear arrangement - Tracks and the Sequence Editor, some bouncing between the two happens, but it's not anything that really strikes me as that major. If you are on Mac OS it supports AU, VST and VST3, which means a higher chance that one standard passes validation and works etc.

This is personal, but I think it counts, they respond to tech support emails, and there are weekly 90 minute webinars that have been going on ever since the pandemic started. One of the main teachers and reps for MOTU is openly available every week to ask questions about DP and learn some aspect of it. It's a smaller independent company like Bitwig and personally I feel that counts. They do seem to listen to peoples requests and attempt to add in features or fix bugs. They're more approachable via the webinars and Tech Links than Apple with Logic, even Bitwig it's almost a form letter when you send in a bug report.

There are mixed reviews of the Windows version, IMO it really depends on your collection of VSTs or configuration, because some folks are happy using it and a few are vocally antagonistic towards DP. The Windows users I know that love it don't go online, because they flatly don't have the patience to deal with the haters. :shrug:

Anyway, I like supporting underdogs with great ideas like Bitwig and DP. Maybe that's silly, but I don't think so.
Thanks for the write up!I just opened abunch of DP videos after reading to get a gist of what it's like. TBH, the main reason I'm interested is cause it's an obscure daw plus it seems a lot of old professionals use it (including multiple producers I admire from 2000s) lol

Cubase is indeed a do everything daw, I still learn new things everyday. I've tried most daws but never gave DP a go. Their Mach5 sampler can load all akai/roland/scds/old formats similar to Cubase's Halion sampler, and save them as patches I heard. I also heard there was some advance midi editing features I need to go watch some of the videos I opened lol

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HREQ wrote: Mon Jun 10, 2024 6:01 pm Thanks for the write up!I just opened abunch of DP videos after reading to get a gist of what it's like. TBH, the main reason I'm interested is cause it's an obscure daw plus it seems a lot of old professionals use it (including multiple producers I admire from 2000s) lol
For sure, I'm in my 50's and one of the younger people that regularly meet up on zoom to chat about DP, the rest are an older crowd which is both good and bad. There are a few millennials but not many. None of them use or care about the Clips features, so that getting refined is probably lost in the wind, but we all help each other out with technical issues in terms of understanding the DAW or maybe some OS issue etc. Yeah and the fact that Autechre and Coil were big fans always made me happy. Not to mention Danny Elfman.
Cubase is indeed a do everything daw, I still learn new things everyday. I've tried most daws but never gave DP a go. Their Mach5 sampler can load all akai/roland/scds/old formats similar to Cubase's Halion sampler, and save them as patches I heard. I also heard there was some advance midi editing features I need to go watch some of the videos I opened lol
FYI the Machfive Sampler was a collaboration between MOTU and UVI, at some point 5 years ago I believe the collaboration ended. Machfive has been deprecated, and UVI took the code back to make Falcon. I always wonder how that worked out for MOTU? since it was obvious they had a large stake in the basic code and implementation of Machfive, and Falcon is obviously using the same code? but MOTU and UVI are still friendly, a UVI player MOTU instruments soundbank of sampler instruments is included with DP11.

Another FYI, apparently UVI didnt' want to pay Chicken Systems to translate all those old sample formats, so Falcon doesn't have that feature anymore. I went ahead and bought Chicken Systems Translator, I think they have Black Friday sales? IMO it's worth it, but I have a TON of random sample libraries from years of collecting.

DP does a few pretty cool MIDI things, preview built into the quantize pop up window, lots of obscure things like auto tuning for hardware synths, a search function that lets you choose every third beat for instance and a specific note, which I've used more often than I thought I would. There is a decent community these days. That used to be a sore point, but only because IMO of a certain crotchety old piano player who dominated the main independent forum for years. He no longer posts much so...

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https://www.macworld.com/article/615329 ... eview.html

Very powerful, very complex, unusual workflow.

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jonljacobi wrote: Tue Jun 11, 2024 12:29 pm https://www.macworld.com/article/615329 ... eview.html

Very powerful, very complex, unusual workflow.
IMO as a long time user with 6 other DAWs on my computer here, the workflow is not that unusual if you ignore Chunks at first and just learn how to use it like any other DAW, it's when you add in Chunks that there can be a learning curve absolutely. I left for Logic for about 7 years and when I came back I did the same thing IMO a lot of people do when confronted with a unique feature like that, tried to incorporate it right away and got hopelessly lost a few times.


Plus Volta, MOTUs cv plugin has been deprecated for a long time. Unfortunately MOTU are just as bad as Arturia and others in that they still have the web page up for Volta.
Expert Sleepers make a VST/AU plugin that does CV for hardware that's $60 https://expertsleepers.onfastspring.com/silent-way-v2-x

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DP had everything you could ever want or need. Except it still tends to be stuck in that old studio routing mode, which can be annoying if you're all in the box. I think you can avoid it mostly now, but it is always lurking under the hood.

That negative out of the way, I love the built-in effects and synths, although Mach is showing it's age a bit. It has arrangement features for days, I haven't heard the latest version of their pitch correction, but it was always top notch. It's had a looper, like, forever, from before anybody knew what s looper was. It's best to just dig into the demo and make a project, see how you get on.

Oh, and it's not Cubase.
I started on Logic 5 with a PowerBook G4 550Mhz. I now have a MacBook Air M1 and it's ~165x faster! So, why is my music not proportionally better? :(

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machinesworking wrote: Mon Jun 10, 2024 12:28 pm So first off, it's fair to say I'm biased, easily the most vocal user of DP on KVR.
Maybe you can answer a question for me. I'm using Reason as my main DAW, but I'm looking at DP to perhaps add it to my studio setup (for various reasons I won't go into here). In Reason, blocks are an important part of my composing workflow, and the chunks in DP is the only alternative that can do what blocks do (although, chunks can obviously do a lot more than blocks in Reason).

In Reason, I have setup audio output routing, with separate monitoring corrections (using SonarWorks) for each routing. This is done by utilizing the multi outputs of my Scarlett 18i20, and this gives me nice monitor output control without the need of a hardware monitor controller.

So, here's the question: is it possible in DP to setup something similar?
CrimsonWarlock aka TechnoGremlin, Moved to Reason and Rack Extensions exclusively (from Reaper and VSTs) several years ago.

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