Saturday, March 17, 2007


Reaper is an incredibly powerful Windows DAW, which is as increidibly affordable at a price of $39.00 and which has a very active if not passionate community behind it. I bumped into Reaper because my usual DAW Adobe Audition does not have VSTi support. VSTi support means being able to load virtual instruments not to be confused with virtual effects which it can indeed do. There are many more reasons than just VSTi support to contemplate using Reaper. It is really a powerful multitrack recorder with very flexible signal routing capabilities. It also comes with a ton of free effects which seem to be very well liked within the community. Reaper does not have in my estimation the editing tools that Audition has. My guess is that I will be using both tools with Reaper being used for the intial multitrack recording to initial mixes and Audition in the final mixing and mastering process.

Some of Reaper's features:

  • Portable - supports running from USB keys or other removable media
  • 64 bit audio engine
  • Excellent low-latency performance
  • Multiprocessor capable
  • Direct multi-track recording to many formats including WAV/BWF/W64, AIFF, WavPack, FLAC, OGG, and MIDI.
  • Extremely flexible routing
  • Fast, tool-less editing
  • Supports a wide range of hardware (nearly any audio interface, outboard hardware, many control surfaces)
  • Support for VST, VSTi, DX, DXi effects
  • ReaPlugs: high quality 64 bit effect suite
  • Tightly coded - installer is just over 2MB
  • ool-less mouse interface -- spend less time clicking
  • Drag and drop files to instantly import them into a project
  • Support for mixing any combination of file type/samplerate/bit depth on each track
  • Easily split, move, and resize items
  • Each item has easily manipulated fades and volume
  • Tab to transient support
  • Configurable and editable automatic crossfading of overlapping items
  • Per-item pitch shift and time stretch
  • Arbitrary item grouping
  • Markers and envelopes can be moved in logical sync with editing operations
  • Ripple editing - moving/deletion of items can optionally affect later items
  • Multiple tempos and time signatures per project
  • Ability to define and edit project via regions
  • Automation envelopes

  • and more well worth checking it out. Don't let the prize fool you Reaper in many ways is just as powerful as any of the other well known DAWs such as Cubase and ProTools. It may well be exactly what you need.