Audacity or Reaper

This section is now closed.
Forum rules
Audacity 1.2.x is now obsolete. Please use the current Audacity 2.1.x version.

The final version of Audacity for Windows 98/ME is the legacy 2.0.0 version.
bob_e_s
Posts: 30
Joined: Mon Sep 28, 2009 4:04 pm
Operating System: Please select

Audacity or Reaper

Post by bob_e_s » Tue Oct 13, 2009 12:58 pm

Hi,

Quite new to recording using the computer, not to bothered about a professional finish but want to record a decent guitar sound.
My method of recording would be this, ideally- put together a drum track, import it into a programme as a track, then record various guitar tracks and vocal tracks over the top.

I've just bought a Line 6 Pocket Pod, which hopefully should allow me to record an amplified guitar sound directly into whichever software I choose to use.

My question is, therefore, based on that setup and with those aims in mind, would I be better continuing using Audacity, or would it be worth my while to try Reaper? Or does it make no difference?

Cheers.

steve
Site Admin
Posts: 81420
Joined: Sat Dec 01, 2007 11:43 am
Operating System: Linux *buntu

Re: Audacity or Reaper

Post by steve » Tue Oct 13, 2009 7:45 pm

The Line6 will probably work better with Reaper as Reaper supports ASIO.

Note that Reaper is not Free. It is free to try (without any restrictions on use), but the guys that wrote the program are trying to make a living by selling their work at a very reasonable price.

Reaper does not "edit" audio and you may find that you want to use a wave editor for fine tuning some of your tracks - you can still use Audacity for doing that. (Audacity IS free - donations are accepted http://audacityteam.org/community/donate#donate )
9/10 questions are answered in the FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQ)

bob_e_s
Posts: 30
Joined: Mon Sep 28, 2009 4:04 pm
Operating System: Please select

Re: Audacity or Reaper

Post by bob_e_s » Wed Oct 14, 2009 7:32 am

By editing audio do you mean altering the sound once it's been recorded, applying effects etc?

I'm going to sound stupid here- but what exactly is ASIO? I thought it was something to do with USB inputs for audio (which I wont be using- the pocket pod doesn't have a usb line out, so I'm putting the output into the line in on my sound card).

I know Reaper isn't free, but as there's a free trial I can make sure I can use it before I buy it. I've had notable failures to get on with certain bits of software in the past (energyxt being a very recent example).

Thanks for your advice, Steve.

steve
Site Admin
Posts: 81420
Joined: Sat Dec 01, 2007 11:43 am
Operating System: Linux *buntu

Re: Audacity or Reaper

Post by steve » Wed Oct 14, 2009 4:38 pm

bob_e_s wrote:By editing audio do you mean altering the sound once it's been recorded, applying effects etc?
There was a discussion about this on the forum some time ago.
Basically there are 2 types of "editing" - destructive and non-destructive.
Traditionally, Digital Audio Workstations (DAW) have used non-destructive editing, while "Sample Editors" have used destructive editing. Today, the distinction between DAWs and sample editors is very blurred as each now often has many features previously found in the other.

A DAW can be thought of as a fancy multi-track tape recorder that allows you to record multiple tracks, add effects, cut and splice tracks together and so on.

A sample editor can be thought of as a word-processor for sound, enabling you to take apart and reconstruct sounds with precision down to single samples. You can apply effects and process the sound in many ways.

An essential difference is that Reaper operates as a non-destructive DAW, whereas Audacity works as a destructive editor. There are advantages to both approaches, which is why many people use both alongside each other. To work non-destructively, all processing is done on-the-fly. If a track is shortened, the data is not actually altered, it is just the start/end play positions that are changed. However, there are some situations when it is preferable to permanently change the data, and that is when you would use a sample editor. For example, if you have recorded a track and there is an unwanted click of a few samples duration, then you could correct it in a non-destructive editor by processing it with click removal tool each and every time it plays. Alternatively you could load it into a sample editor and fix it permanently. Some things are easier to do in Reaper, while other things are easier in Audacity.
bob_e_s wrote:but what exactly is ASIO?
"Audio Stream Input/Output". See here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Audio_Stream_Input/Output
Basically it provides your computer with an efficient sound system that has been specifically designed for professional music production. Audacity can not be distributed with ASIO support due to licensing restrictions (ASIO is owned by Steinberg).
9/10 questions are answered in the FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQ)

bob_e_s
Posts: 30
Joined: Mon Sep 28, 2009 4:04 pm
Operating System: Please select

Re: Audacity or Reaper

Post by bob_e_s » Wed Oct 14, 2009 5:50 pm

Think I understand. With Audacity you can add effects then remove them. With reaper you can add effects but they are permanent. I'm hoping to record most things with the effects already in place, so that doesn't really make any difference to me.

I'm sure this is discussed in depth elsewhere, but does using ASIO-compatible audio software and an ASIO driver (I've got ASIOforall) mean that you can record and playback simultaneously? Are there any other effects?

Recording and playing back what I'm recording at the same time would be extremely useful...I've come to understand that isn't possible in Audacity. True?

waxcylinder
Forum Staff
Posts: 14675
Joined: Tue Jul 31, 2007 11:03 am
Operating System: Windows 10

Re: Audacity or Reaper

Post by waxcylinder » Wed Oct 14, 2009 7:31 pm

bob_e_s wrote:Think I understand. With Audacity you can add effects then remove them. With reaper you can add effects but they are permanent. I'm hoping to record most things with the effects already in place, so that doesn't really make any difference to me.
No he means t'other way around

WC
________________________________________FOR INSTANT HELP: (Click on Link below)
* * * * * FAQ * * * * * Tutorials * * * * * Audacity Manual * * * * *

waxcylinder
Forum Staff
Posts: 14675
Joined: Tue Jul 31, 2007 11:03 am
Operating System: Windows 10

Re: Audacity or Reaper

Post by waxcylinder » Wed Oct 14, 2009 7:32 pm

bob_e_s wrote: Recording and playing back what I'm recording at the same time would be extremely useful...I've come to understand that isn't possible in Audacity. True?
Sure you can do that in Audacity - you just need to be careful that you don't make yourself a feedback loop.

I do this all the time when I transcribe my LPs and tapes - works fine.

WC
________________________________________FOR INSTANT HELP: (Click on Link below)
* * * * * FAQ * * * * * Tutorials * * * * * Audacity Manual * * * * *

bob_e_s
Posts: 30
Joined: Mon Sep 28, 2009 4:04 pm
Operating System: Please select

Re: Audacity or Reaper

Post by bob_e_s » Wed Oct 14, 2009 7:56 pm

>>No he means t'other way around

Right, got it.
waxcylinder wrote:
bob_e_s wrote:Think I understand. With Audacity you can add effects then remove them. With reaper you can add effects but they are permanent. I'm hoping to record most things with the effects already in place, so that doesn't really make any difference to me.
No he means t'other way around

WC
When I record my guitar into audacity there's a delay between me playing and me hearing what I'm playing (recording) back using software playthrough. This is obviously a bit of a pain.
Is there a way to do this in Audacity? Or using ASIO through Reaper?

I can think of a more crude way of doing what I want, which is using two sets of headphones, one plugged into my pc speakers (playing the backing track only) and one plugged into my amp. I then simply listen to both at the same time.

waxcylinder
Forum Staff
Posts: 14675
Joined: Tue Jul 31, 2007 11:03 am
Operating System: Windows 10

Re: Audacity or Reaper

Post by waxcylinder » Thu Oct 15, 2009 10:21 am

bob_e_s wrote:When I record my guitar into audacity there's a delay between me playing and me hearing what I'm playing (recording) back using software playthrough.
This is "Latency" - it's down to the processing time that your computer takes to handle the input signal.

You bascically have two options;

1) use hardware monitoring rather than Audacity's s/w monitoring - this normally is only applicable if you have an external soundcard with a headphone socket - or a headphone socket on your amp.

2) Upgrade to 1.3 where new tools have been added to mangage and compensate for latency. See this article in the manual which is under development for V2.0: http://manual.audacityteam.org/index.ph ... references

WC
________________________________________FOR INSTANT HELP: (Click on Link below)
* * * * * FAQ * * * * * Tutorials * * * * * Audacity Manual * * * * *

bob_e_s
Posts: 30
Joined: Mon Sep 28, 2009 4:04 pm
Operating System: Please select

Re: Audacity or Reaper

Post by bob_e_s » Thu Oct 15, 2009 12:52 pm

waxcylinder wrote:
1) use hardware monitoring rather than Audacity's s/w monitoring - this normally is only applicable if you have an external soundcard with a headphone socket - or a headphone socket on your amp.

2) Upgrade to 1.3 where new tools have been added to mangage and compensate for latency. See this article in the manual which is under development for V2.0: http://manual.audacityteam.org/index.ph ... references

WC
1. Well I can do that. I can either run headphones from my pod or plug it into my amp as a monitor. Then if I turn off 'software playthrough' but turn on overdubbing I can listen to the other tracks as I record.

It'd be nice to have it all over headphones from the same source. It'd save me setting up amp and stuff, or mucking about with several pairs of headphones.

2. I've read that stuff about latency compensation, and I understand it, I think, but it seems to be more to do with compensating with latency after the track has recorded, rather than as it's recording. I've not had a problem with recorded tracks not lining up when they are recorded, just when using software playthrough. And (correct me if I'm wrong) I don't think there's a solution for that in Audacity.

That's why I asked about Reaper and ASIO- Would using a programme that supports ASIO resolve the sfotware playthrough delay problem?

Locked