REASON Review

Reason 9 Standard at a Glance
Reason 9 Yes No
Price $69-$399
Free Trial x
Third Party FX x
Film Scoring x
OSx x
PC x
iOS x
Android x

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I can think of a few good reasons…eh hem, for you to go with this DAW, well more than a few. With its sleek layout, full production abilities and reasonable list price, there’s no rhyme or reason why you wouldn’t want this thing–ok, ok, I’ll reluctantly stop with the puns. Debuting in 2000 by the Swedish company Propellerhead Software, Reason has long been a DAW to contend with.

1. The Price Point

Propellerhead has made Reason available at two different prices with two other options to upgrade for owners of previous editions, but don’t fret, you can afford it!

The initial option is Reason Essentials 9 at $69, and although it is the ultra-stripped down, Geo Metro version, Essentials packs enough punch to get the job done, like basic recording, editing, mixing and mastering functions; more on this in the next section.

The next route available is Reason 9, which is the full version of this DAW and comes with unrestrained, unadulterated access to the whole Reason shabang. When compared and contrasted with other recording softwares in its class,you can purchase it at a seemingly un-hefty $399.

As mentioned earlier, there are a few ways to upgrade from prior versions to the most current 9.2. The first is $129 for owners of Reason 1-8, Record, Balance or Essentials. The other path is focused on customers who are running Adapted, Limited or Essentials without Balance. You can think of it as a $70 voucher toward an upgrade because this approach barely misses the full-price-mark, ringing in at $329.

Much like other recording software in its league, the full edition of Reason 9.2 is available in trial form for 30 days, completely free and houses everything you’d find in the paid version.

2. Capabilities and Features

Here’s a quick abstract, or synopsis, if you will, of each edition, and to keep it elementary, let’s start with Elements.

Should you embark on your quest in search of Reason….9, and aren’t trying to blow a ton of cash, the obvious choice you’ll go with is Elements 9. Although it is cheap, it’s not rickety and gives way to a surprising amount of room to explore and create. Here’s the jist of what you’re trading your hard earned dollars for:

  • Unlimited audio and instrument tracks
  • 5 virtual instruments
  • 10 effects plug-ins including Softube bass and guitar amp modeling, eq, compression and more
  • SSL modeled console
  • Full multi-track sequencer
  • Time-stretch, comping, quantizing and slicing tools
  • 64 bit, available on OSx 10.7/ Windows 7 or later

On to the main course…Reason 9, Propellerhead’s fullest version in the series, hosts a ton of great plug-ins, virtual instruments and easy workflow, sure to make any project run as smooth as possible. Included in its bag of tracks are a grip of winning features guaranteed to leave you soaked in a pool of joy-filled tears:

  • Unlimited audio and instrument tracks
  • 10 virtual instruments: ID-8 songwriter’s toolbox, synthesizer, samplers, loopers and drum designers
  • 17 included effects:Mastering suite, delay, flanger, reverb, chorus, distortion, eq, compression
  • Interactive rack FX
  • Audio to MIDI
  • Pitch editing, sequencing, slicing, comping, time-stretching, and quantizing
  • Live sampling with Reason devices
  • Full capability to record, edit, mix and master
  • “Player” devices for easy songwriting (more info in section 3)
  • 64 bit, available on OSx 10.7/ Windows 7 or later

3. What Sets It Apart

The latest release of Reason gave passage to a new generation of rack effects called Players that opens the doors to serious freedom in creating new songs on the spot. This freshly integrated technology makes songwriting easier than ever due to its intuitive functions in producing fully arranged and written songs with the press of a few keys on your MIDI controller. Players is also impressive in the way it handles chord voicing–it gives options to invert chords and expand on root notes you’re keying and extrapolates them into full blown chords. This feature makes it effortless to move throughout new song ideas, melodies and chord progressions turning them into “flawless musical outcomes.”

Conclusion

Having a tiff with your current DAW? Ready to breakup with it a don’t know where to look? With its array of options, the incorporation of the Players rack devices and a seemingly endless palette to work with, Reason 9 makes for a very great choice as a high-speed/low-drag software that assures you won’t be using your creative energy fighting technology, but instead, using it to focus on laying down music and prepping it for the world.