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Cakewalk SONAR 4 Studio Edition

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Product 706054
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Professional-studio power at a project-studio price. Powerful recording, editing, composing, mixing, remixing, and navigation tools in a fast, stream...Click To Read More About This Product

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If purchased during September '05, you get a free upgrade to SONAR5!

Professional-studio power at a project-studio price. Powerful recording, editing, composing, mixing, remixing, and navigation tools in a fast, streamlined user interface make you more productive than ever before. With unlimited track support, a smart filing scheme and workgroup features, easy loop construction, and more options for manipulating audio, SONAR makes audio intuitive and easy.

SONAR 4 Studio Edition is a special version of SONAR 4 designed for project studios and aspiring professionals built upon the same core engine and feature set as SONAR 4 Producer Edition.

The new Track Folders feature makes it easy to efficiently manage large scale projects and loop recorded takes. You can place multiple tracks in a folder and make simultaneous adjustments and perform functions on all the tracks in a folder as though it was a single track. Tracks within a folder are displayed as a Composite Clip which you can cut-copy-paste, move, slip edit, and split; import multichannel audio into a track folders. SONAR 4's Track Folders are ideal for managing multi-mic or grouped recordings (drums, choir, piano, orchestra, acoustic guitar).

SONAR's new comp editing enhancements makes multi-take, composite tracking of both audio and MIDI faster than ever. Recorded and edited takes are displayed in multiple layers of a single track and you can audition only the selected content in a project while comping parts by quickly muting or isolating unwanted/wanted takes or sections. You can also blend elements together using the auto-crop tool with crossfade option or the non-destructive Auto Punch Record Mode.

Version 4 extends SONAR's loop editing and composition capabilities with slice-based envelope control of gain, pitch, pan; slice preview & auto-loop simplifies marker placement/adjustments.

Freeze is a new feature that will help you optimize your system resources and allow you to do lots more with your music. You can use SONAR 4's freeze implementation for tracks, effects, and synths. It releases memory and CPU load back to your system for use on other tasks, but retains frozen data so you can unfreeze later and continue working. Freeze only works when data is present, and you can use Freeze to render tracks in one easy step, automatically unload plug-ins, and for quick toggling/auditioning of tracks. You can even move and edit frozen data or convert frozen data into groove clips.

The Simultaneous Clip Editing mode lets you perform the following edits on multiple clips simultaneously: nudge, roll out groove clips, slip edit, and add/edit fades.

Nudge is a clip editing enhancement you can use both vertically and horizontally within Track and Piano Roll views. Nudge resolution is extremely flexible (musical time, seconds, milliseconds, frames, samples, ticks, follow snap settings) and a total of 9 nudge commands can be assigned to any key or MIDI event.

  • Record, edit, arrange, and mix unlimited tracks of audio and MIDI
  • Customizable bus architecture
  • 32-bit floating point audio engine
  • Full plug-in delay compensation
  • Ultra high-quality sample rate conversion
  • Support for any sampling rate
  • Precise waveform display
  • Synchronization of audio, MIDI, video, and external hardware
  • Sub-sample accurate internal timing
  • Multiprocessor optimization
  • Loop-based composition, construction, and editing tools with ACID loop and MIDI groove clip support, Cyclone DXi
  • Support for DirectX and VST audio effects
  • MFX MIDI FX support
  • DXi and VSTi soft synth capability
  • ReWire 1.0 & 2.0 clients
  • Includes 31 audio effects 3 DXi soft synths, 14 MFX
  • Advanced MIDI routing & synth layering
  • Unlimited undo/redo with edit history
  • Assign hotkeys for custom screen layouts
  • Project audio directories
  • Consolidate project files for fast backup
  • Search for associated files
  • Extensive online help and 650+ page printed manual
  • Designed and optimized for Windows XP/2000
  • Hardware and compatibility
  • Support for all Windows-compatible audio hardware (including Pro Tools | HD) via ASIO or WDM
  • Support for any MIDI compatible hardware control surface (Edirol, Mackie, Tascam, more)
  • Support for DirectX and VST audio effects; MFX MIDI FX; DXi and VSTi soft synths; and ReWire 1.0 & 2.0 clients (Project5, Kinetic, Reason, more)
  • OMFI & Broadcast Wave import/export for cross platform collaboration with Digital Performer, Logic, Nuendo, and Pro Tools studios
  • Import formats: AIF, ASF, AU, AVI (with stereo or 5.1 audio), Broadcast Wave, MIDI, MP2, MP3, MPEG, MPG, OMFI, QuickTime, SND, WAV, Windows Media Audio 9 (WMA), WMA9 Pro 5.1, WMA9 lossless, Windows Media Video, proprietary Cakewalk formats (.bun, .cwb, .cwp, .wrk)
  • Export formats: WAV, ACID-format WAV, Broadcast Wave, AVI (with stereo or 5.1 audio), OMFI, MIDI, MP3 (30-day trial encoder), QuickTime, Real Audio G2, Windows Media Audio 9 (WMA), WMA9 Pro 5.1, WMA9 lossless, Windows Media Video (with stereo or 5.1 audio), and proprietary Cakewalk formats (.cwb, .cwp); Other audio formats supported via external command-line encoders
  • Open support for external encoders: surround, LAME, Ogg Vorbis, Monkey's Audio, etc.
  • Export video with control over quality settings and codecs
  • Frame-accurate SMPTE sync with auto-detection of timecode
  • Multi-port MTC and MIDI sync transmission
  • Yamaha OPT Level 1 MIDI Hardware Link support

Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews

(based on 4 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

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  • 2 Stars



  • 1 Stars



Reviewed by 4 customers

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Regular User

By bluemanchue

from hermiston OR

See all my reviews

I've been recording for many years. I still have my Tascam 38 and 308B. I started digital recording using Cakewalk Studio 9 in 2000. Sonar is a direct improvement of Studio 9. Overall Sonar is much better. There are a few things that I like about Studio 9 over Sonar, but they are minor. In short, this software is not for dummies or the technically challenged. Some of the automation tools are hard to figure. The DXi alignment is cumbersome. A critical part of your setup is your interface. Sonar seems to assume that if you need to look at the help files you will be using an inexpensive card. Getting the MIDI line up right is a bit cumbersome. Ignore the manual. Do what works. The effects on the Studio edition are what really make this thing shine. In fact, the entire audio system is outstanding. I keep on finding new things that I like. The audio system is also designed to be used like a midi loop machine except you use audio patches. This is probably old news to some but for me a project that soaks up 700MB on your hard disk for a 3 minute song is new. Anyway, I am very happy with the product. I wish the I/O programming was more like Studio 9 but that's all, and that's probably because my interface is 5 years old. It's a good one though. Also, be warned, the primary difference between studio and producer is no video on studio. That is why my review has no comments about video, I don't need it or want it. Overall, an outstanding DAW platform. Very happy.


Deep and Powerful

By bnotman62

from Seattle, WA

Sonar is a powerful and extremely deep application that delivers everything it claims. I highly recommend buying a book to accompany the program. The product manual, although well written, only scratches what it can do and doesn't really show you any real world applications. Get a good book, there are several. Two I can recommend are Sonar Insider by Craig Anderton, and Sonar 4 Power! by Scott R. Garrigus. Both of these books will help you fine tune settings and step you through real world tricks and tips that will GREATLY improve your performance and knowledge of this complex application. Sonar 4 is a studio quality digital recording/mastering system with countless professional plug-ins, special effects, and MIDI controlling features. You will never outgrow Sonar 4. Cakewalk Rocks!


The way to go!


from Knoxville, TN

See all my reviews

Computer based recording is the way to go these days. I have been using a roland vs1680 for years and I just switched to computer based a couple of weeks ago. The editing tools you get by going computer based are unreal. You can acclomplish so much more than using a HD recorder like the roland. It was pretty easy to use aswell. After only a couple days I was up and running with this software like a pro. Who needs protools?? Not me. This software is great! Well worth it!!!


SONAR 4 Big Bang for the Buck

By Paul Zarvis CRS Recording Studios

from Albany New York

I started my recording engineering journey using SONAR 4. I was at first confused by the miriad of displays and choices etc., but once I found my way around this software I found it to be the most user friendly, easy to use, fast accurate and well designed recording software in the world for the money you pay!I've recently upgraded to SONAR 5 Producer Edition which is phenomenal with it's 64 bit engine and catalog folder capabilities. I especialy love the way I can put ALL drum track under a "folder" and name it "Drum" and it will put them all in the folder and close up and stay out of the way for future use.SONAR products are excellent and the sound is awesome. I've released a professionally mixed and recorded CD and mstered it with WAVElab 4 and it sounds as good tonally as anything I've heard on Pro-tools or Cubase or any other recording software.I won't use any other software now.

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