Reaper - Why do I need it?

Every DAW has its own strengths that’s why people use different DAWs altogether, though from what I know there are common complaints here that are alleviated in Reaper and it complements Renoise pretty well. After all Reaper is a pretty damn good multitrack recorder.

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It all depends on your workflow. If you’re not recording much and basically just work with samples and plugins and you like working in Renoise there isn’t very much Reaper will do for you. If you want to record multiple tracks at once and like working horizontally, or the wrong way as i call it :smiley: , then Reaper may be a good option.

It depends on what you want to do. You may not need it at all. Renoise is super specialized, and is really really good at the things it does. But it’s also consequently bad at doing some basic, standard DAW things. The primary thing Renoise is bad at, imo, is recording live takes, and there are several reasons why it’s not good for recording live takes.

First of all, Renoise breaks everything into patterns. If you are recording something live, whether it be a midi controlled instrument or guitar, it’s going to have imperfection, and you need to have the possibility that the first transient on a take be slightly before it’s theoretical perfect position. If you try this with a midi instrument in Renoise, you’re going to end up with a note at the end of the pattern, and then you have to copy it into the previous pattern manually. The “solution,” which applies to recording audio like guitar, is to start the recording on the previous pattern and wait all the extra time for the pattern you want to record on to come around. It’s really annoying having to wait that extra time. In normal DAWs like Reaper, you can start recording anywhere you want, so just put the start cursor a beat before your start point and you’re golden.

Second, when you’re recording live, it’s really nice to be able to take multiple takes, because sometimes you don’t get the feeling you want until you’ve got into a groove and played it a few times in a row. Most DAWs make this really simple to do, with a “takes” feature. You just highlight and loop the section you want to record, and record a bunch, and then click the take you want, and you can switch to other takes any time you wish. There just aren’t any good ways to do anything similar in Renoise. There are techniques that begin to approach it, but nothing close to the simplicity you’ll find in a typical DAW.

Thirdly, this is just a consequence of Renoise being a tracker: recording live midi instruments that you play with 2 hands, with chords, harmonies, and melodies, like piano, generates absolute unreadable uneditable garbage in Renoise. Trackers just weren’t made to handle that, and they don’t. Renoise is by far the best tracker at handling this, with note columns, and a Ledger script that tries to reorder the notes, but it’s always going to be far easier to edit this kind of performance in a piano roll.

I would describe Renoise as being god of step sequencing, but mere mortal of live recording. So if you only need to step sequence just Renoise is fine (unless you want to sidechain).

I find when I have a dozen vocal tracks to process that renoise quickly becomes quite annoying. I prefer to put them all in a more conventional daw where I can see the waveforms (all at once) to do editing.

It’s also quite fun to do editing on the stems of your tracks because doing some things in renoise is long…like you want to cut to silence for some tracks for an instant - you have to resort to some creative routing or do a lot of automating, both of which can take a while or cause problems with other aspects of the project.

Just wanted to add this Renoise thread link which seems like this thread is an extension of…

Reaper 5 released

Also, scoring or sound design for motion pictures, Reaper looks to be the tool for the job.

I’ve never tried Reaper before, but I would get it specifically for that purpose.

And thanks to all the positive and detailed responses from Renoise users, the contrasts helps in deciphering.

Just wanted to add this Renoise thread link which seems like this thread is an extension of…

Reaper 5 released

Also, scoring or sound design for motion pictures, Reaper looks to be the tool for the job.

I’ve never tried Reaper before, but I would get it specifically for that purpose.

And thanks to all the positive and detailed responses from Renoise users, the contrasts helps in deciphering.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0UVZLUBWerw

We need video support in Renoise!

the only thing i`m missing in renoise is oversight. the pattern matrix is nice, but lately i was under the impression that seeing the complete track would help me getting a better feeling for the organisation of elements.

any thoughts on that? is reaper a good choice if i want to give the left-right world a try?

I’ve used Reaper for years, only started with Renoise relatively recently. I use both.

As said above, the obvious situation in which you’d use both is when you have a Renoise track and want to overdub live instruments or vocals. Doing that – recording multiple takes, editing, stacking, cross-fading, all the rest – is much much easier in Reaper.

I use Renoise’s native recorder to track basic vocal guide tracks, which don’t need much editing, then bounce a final instrumental track from Renoise to Reaper, record and edit the vocals, and do final mixing in Reaper. For that, it’s great.

I also use Reaper for creating samples. Find the right part of a recording, look at it very precisely, insert stretch markers, maybe a little time-stretching… that stuff is all easier in Reaper. So I create samples in Reaper that I then use in Renoise.

Frankly, Reaper is better at most things. So why do I spend more time with Renoise? Because it’s more inspiring. More of an instrument. It’s a psychological thing.

As for Redux: I haven’t tried it yet. In theory, Redux in Reaper could be ideal for me, but I don’t have the spare cash atm. I also find horizontal waveform displays a bit inhibiting now!

I notice a lot of people talk about Reaper DAW. Why do I need this? Renoise seems good enough on its own.

I don’t know. Why do you?

I use Renoise for everything.

is reaper a good choice if i want to give the left-right world a try?

Yes, it’s an excellent choice for a horizontal DAW, especially if you like to be able to customize your DAW, Reaper is the Linux of the DAW world. It’s also very inexpensive and you can evaluate the full thing for sixty days (it just nags, but there are no limitations). I bought several DAWs besides Renoise, and if I could go back in time, I’d probably only have Renoise and Reaper. (I like Tracktion also, but their release cycles are short and I don’t want to pay an update fee every year or less. Reaper is much like Renoise in that regard - update fees are only necessary every few years.)

I use Reaper as much as Renoise, but I would be fine with Renoise alone at this point. The thing is, Reaper and Renoise compliment each other beautifully. I tend to do most of the early work on a project in Reaper, and once I have things more or less set, I render everything to .flac and bring it into the Renoise sampler. In a way, I sort of use Reaper as a sketchbook and Renoise for the final product (though for projects that are straight-ahead traditional composition I generally use only Reaper; Renoise is for the more fun, experimental stuff).

Here’s a recent case (yesterday, actually): I wrote a minute-long orchestral strings line with LASS in Reaper, mixed without any FX, rendered each track, opened the renders in Renoise and cut them up 1-2 bar phrase by phrase in the sampler into separate XRNIs (violins, violas, etc.). Writing the strings would of course be possible in Renoise, but I’m a conservatory nerd and left-to-right horizontal composition is what I know best, and Reaper accommodates that. OTOH, cutting up the renders and using them as I do in Renoise, while technically possible in Reaper, is just way, way easier and more fun in Renoise.

Also, I have a sampling habit in general – I’ve been making sampler instruments since 1999. I used to make them as soundfonts or Kontakt instruments by sampling them in Reaper and then (more recently) convert them to Renoise instruments (Extreme Sample Converter does this, but imperfectly), but over the last year or so I’ve found that making sampler instruments is easiest – by far – in Renoise, before converting them to different formats. You can open XRNIs with standard unzip applications (I just use 7z) and draw out the samples easily, which has turned out to be incredibly useful and makes it possible to convert a Renoise instrument into a Kontakt instrument in a matter of minutes. Anyway Reaper still plays a big role when I’m sampling outboard gear, so that’s just another way they go together well.

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Here’s a recent case (yesterday, actually)… Writing the strings would of course be possible in Renoise, but I’m a conservatory nerd and left-to-right horizontal composition is what I know best, and Reaper accommodates that…

I’m not sure what a conservatory nerd is, but tracker shit works more like sheet music to me than a paino roll does. it’s an opinion, but left to right or up and down has nothing to with anything?

Thanks for the example workflows - so many DAWs seem to focus their advertising spiel on ear candy produced by the DAW, it actually puts me off because all DAWs have nice ear candy in their ads. What l want is just to know a few example workflows in advance and a bit of eye candy. Downloading a demo and exploring workflows myself can be daunting if l’m a complete newb to the DAW in the first place and l’m already up to my neck in DAWs so l need something specific to be sold on.

So thanks for the examples but: I don’t fully understand these 2 paragraphs of yours. For example, with the first paragraph, you have a load of bars cut into individual bars. Why would you need to go into Renoise for that? Also, l thought an XRNI was a multisampled instrument, right? What has that to do with a song you’ve already made?

Regarding the second paragraph: mmm actually never mind, l have no idea about Kontakt (other than it’s like SynthMaster and you need a separate Komplete keyboard for it or you need Kontakt if you buy the Komplete keyboard, or somefin’ - i.e. l’d probably understand it if it were in my sphere of activity).

Btw Reaper is now on my shopping list (because Acid Pro is stuck in 32-bit and misbehaves on 64-bit machines as a ReWire host, but then again, l might just keep it because l love it and it was the first DAW to do sample beatmapping and stretching etc.).

To answer your first question, I could cut tracks in Reaper into single phrases (usually 1-3 or 4 bars) and import those in Renoise, but Reaper’s way of doing the cutting is more fiddly, have to work with transient sensitivity and such; in Renoise you can just zoom right in and cut very precisely if you want.

Second question, sorry I wasn’t clear, basically I mean I broke each string track WAV into phrases and put each phrase on a different key in a Renoise instrument, so it’s like a dumb version of Renoise’s phrase function. Did this so I could trigger different phrases in different string sections (violin, viola, cello, bass) at different times for a constantly evolving song. Now of course I could have done all the string writing in Renoise, rendered it to samples, etc. I just really prefer Reaper for that kind of standard composition stuff and Reaper accommodates it better. If I’d needed the phrases to transpose or anything I would have done it all in Renoise in the phrase editor but not for this song. So in effect I took a standard strings thing I wrote in Reaper and remixed it in Renoise. Does that makes sense?

oneunkind, I was a music major in a music conservatory, pretty traditional, not elite or anything but a pretty good one. Studied music theory, etc. Maybe I’m still not totally used to Renoise but I still find that I’m more comfortable in a piano roll or better yet an actual score editor like in Logic (Reaper doesn’t have one but is rumoured to be getting one) for writing things like string parts. It’s just how I learned. Piano rolls I’ve been using since around 1999.

I use Reaper for mixing.

Rewire Renoise and let slave set bpm. Create a couple of Rewire busses.

REnoise Master & Send Returns => Mix L & R

Bus 01 , bus 02 => output 1/2

Then, I have Groups in Renoise for Drumz, Bass etc. I set Group 1 DRUMZ to bus01 Rewired, and the bass Group to bus02 and the MAster to Mix L/R.

ReaInsert for using my hardware compressors for each bus, i.e. drums parallel tfpro P-38ex and bass through the Focusrite Compounder.

ReaInsert on Reaper’s Master Channel using my Hardware Multiband Limiter - Aphex dominator 2.

Mix and Record Audio Bounces.

I can mix in context while I don’t mind latency, because I’m supposed to do this when the track is finished inside Renoise first.

But, I have set-up both Reaper and Renoise to listen to my Logitech keyboard G-510s and I can resample anything inside Renoise in such a perfect way, I should make videos and upload it on youtube. Using the Sample Recorder is Renoise is a pleasure. A have set up buttons on the keyboard instead of shortcuts for Rendering Selection to Sample, Save sample as…, sample Recorder, Render Song and Macros such as Alt + A, wait, Cmd+C, down arrow, Cmd + P . Nuff said.

I’m starting to look at ways to bring Renoise and Reaper a bit closer, beginning with a ReaScript for Reaper that (if it works) will be able to convert MIDI items (or a range of MIDI notes selected within a MIDI item) into a basic XRNZ (Renoise phrase preset). Just the notes/velocities/note-offs (for now). I’ve got some other ideas but am not certain they could be implemented. Another thing I want to do is make an Improvisator-like Lua script for chord and progression management that hopefully can be ported to both Reaper and Renoise for use in both (and ideally share user presets and such; both have Lua implemented as a scripting language, which opens a lot of possibilities). Anyway I’ll let the forum know when it’s ready (probably be a while, I’m busy with work these days). Frankly need to brush up my coding skills in general first, but I’m confident I can pull this sort of thing off. Anyone have any ideas on how Reaper and Renoise could be brought “closer”? Another big area of possibility is Renoise-specific Jesusonic plugins (using the ReaPlugs version of ReaJS). Pls let me know.

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I use reaper and I love it because it’s very easy to use it is the more powerful for recording sessions

but I love renoise because just what thebellows said I love making music using samples also I make my music using vsti’s so renoise is very cool for me easy and very active forum

If you are into commercial use, theres no other software at this price which offers ddp mastering. Its also proven, that reaper has the best vst performance of all DAWs at the moment. It`s small in size also. You don’t need to load lots of GB to start your musical project.

Just wanted to add this Renoise thread link which seems like this thread is an extension of…

Reaper 5 released

Also, scoring or sound design for motion pictures, Reaper looks to be the tool for the job.

I’ve never tried Reaper before, but I would get it specifically for that purpose.

And thanks to all the positive and detailed responses from Renoise users, the contrasts helps in deciphering.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0UVZLUBWerw

YAy, thats what i needed to hear - im gonna get it… THANKS!

YAy, thats what i needed to hear - im gonna get it… THANKS!

Cool feature: Reaper will accept animated GIFs.

Reaper + Redux is a great combo