PropellerHead Reason 7
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PropellerHead Reason 7
Nonstopbeats 03/12/2015

PropellerHead Reason 7 : Nonstopbeats's user review

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5

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Value For Money : Excellent Audience: Anyone
Reason 7 is the latest installment of the popular music making software that has been developed by the Swedish company known as propellerhead. This sequencing software has gained in popularity over the years thanks to its simulation of a real hardware studio. This latest version incorporates some new features such as the new mixer and EQ, and makes it even easier to create tracks quickly and effectively. In this review I will take a look at some of the features that are new to this version and I will also outline the benefits that it offers to its users.

Features

One of the things that I had to get to grips with when I first started using Reason was the fact that it is completely based within a midi matrix. This means that you cannot drag audio directly into the sequencer and instead need to build it through MIDI data. However, once you get used to this the workflow becomes very quick and the automation is also very easy to carry out, which means you can create complex automations in volume and other effects on instruments that you use.

One of the things I like most about Reason is the fact that it creates a virtual studio on your computer. Reason is a sequencer that uses the concept of creating a virtual hardware studio in which users can create their music. This includes a selection of devices which represent the physical devices that you would find in a modern studio. For instance, you would have a mixer and then have other instruments which plug into this mixer, including devices such as drum machines and synthesizers, as well samplers and effects units. This is all available in the Reason software and can be connected in exactly the same way as you would do in a real studio. You can even flick the instruments round and rewire them in new and interesting ways at the back via CV cables which offer communication between effects.

There are several new features on Reason 7 which I really enjoyed. The first was that of the ability to record audio directly into the sequencer. Before Reason 7 you could only load audio into one of the plug-ins, such as the sampler. What I really liked about this was that you could then use a feature similar to Recycle, which is sold separately in order to chop up the files into individual slices that could then be re-programmed and played across the keyboard.

Another exciting new feature that I found interesting in Reason 7 was that of the new mixer. This allows you the ability to create a wide range of effects when you're mixing down your track, including parallel compression and the ability parametrically EQ each individual channel whilst being able to see the signal in the EQ. As well is this the software also comes with a wide selection of new sounds. Being particularly interested in samples meant that I was able to create a selection of new and interesting tracks with the sounds included.

Pros and cons

Reason is a brilliant program for creating electronic music in a wide range of different styles but it does have a few problems. One of the main problems is that it will not accept plug-ins from external software designers. This means that you can only use the devices that are built within Reason and will not be able to use popular plug-ins such as Albino and Massive. Another problem with Reason is that the sound engine is sometimes regarded as being not as good a quality as other sequencers that are available, such as Logic and Ableton. However, Reason can still make music which sounds great. However, The user may need to get used to the sound engine if they have previously used programs such as Logic.

Comparison

There are no sequencers quite like Reason but other programs such as Logic and Cubase do have a similar sense of design. I found Logic to be easy to use after having practiced on Reason. The Midi matrix is similar and automation functions in a relatively similar way. Plug-ins such as drum machines and synthesizers are also designed in a similar way to those of reason. Logic has the added ability of being able to drag audio files directly into the sequencer window which you can then manipulate. Reasons on the other hand requires you to load a sampler and then manipulate that samples through Midi.

Summary

I was excited to upgrade to the new version of Reason after having used every other version from 2.5 onwards. The new version introduces some interesting features which can be incorporated well within your music. The new devices focus on the mixer and the ability to mix down music in new ways. This will appeal to individuals who want to get an interesting mix within their tracks. This is a nice upgrade and will suit fans of the software.