Moving to Reaper from Reason

Want to talk about music hardware or software that doesn't include Reason?
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Jagwah
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Joined: 16 Jan 2015

Post 07 Mar 2021

Just wondering if anyone that has done this has any opinions about it?

I really like how seamless the mixer works in Reason, what is it like using the mixer in Reaper after being used to this seamless workflow?

Is the sequencer and working with audio really that much better? Is automating rack device parameters and working with midi just as good or better / worse?

Any thoughts at all?

Cheers!

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motuscott
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Location: the New York

Post 07 Mar 2021

Reaper is where I'll hop to if and when Reason becomes unReasonable, so I'm interested in hearing this as well.
The Now Sound of MIDI Thru 🧂

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MannequinRaces
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Post 07 Mar 2021

Jagwah wrote:
07 Mar 2021
Just wondering if anyone that has done this has any opinions about it?

I really like how seamless the mixer works in Reason, what is it like using the mixer in Reaper after being used to this seamless workflow?

Is the sequencer and working with audio really that much better? Is automating rack device parameters and working with midi just as good or better / worse?

Any thoughts at all?

Cheers!
They have a 60 day trial. Get to it.

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kuhliloach
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Joined: 09 Dec 2015

Post 07 Mar 2021

Reaper is a fantastic and affordable DAW developed by people who care. That said, as an Ableton, Logic, and Reason user I don't currently have it installed.

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bxbrkrz
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Post 07 Mar 2021

I checked my email. I purchased a Reaper license in July, 2007. LOL! It was mostly to test VSTs out. It's a great prog, but I could not gel with it back then. Never tried it again when VST became a thing in Reason. I loved all the skins they had for it. That was fun.
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raymondh
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Post 07 Mar 2021

I've been on Reaper for about a year now, using RRP for about 6 months.

I like:
- I like not having to switch context between rack and sequencer
- being able to keep my MIDI keyboard focused on one track while I view the notes in another (This can be done with Reason if I change the MIDI prefs too)
- The regions concept
- Arrangement navigation that varies depending on where the mouse is hovering. great with my logitech mx master mouse with the side scrolling wheel. really fast to get around
- I find entering midi notes faster than Reason, and it's great being able to change velocity on the note itself
- "actions" and how easy it is to map hotkeys (incl from my master keyboard)
- The ability to link one slider on my master keyboard to control the volume slider on the currently selected track!
- proper track freeze! (not that I've needed to use it yet, even with multiple instances of Diva, Repro, VK2 etc)
- CPU efficiency - much much better than Reason
- The EQs like ReEQ. (ReEQ is like a free version of Fabfilter)
- Track templates. I use them to make it easy to use my hardware. e.g. I can drop in a Sirin-MIDI template that creates a track already with the correct MIDI interface and MIDI channel selected, and I can drop in a Sirin-Audio template that has a track automatically selecting the right audio interface inputs.
- The fantastic tutorials online Reaper Mania, Reaper Blog etc. Without these, I don't think I would have stuck to the software.
- The price.

I don't really like:
- Remembering all the hot keys. Some things are front in centre in Reason that are not as obvious in Reaper. But once I learn the hotkeys, the potential is for a faster workflow.
- the increased complexity in collaboration - especially with sample locations. Its nice in Reason that everything is self contained, and when using NNXT/Kong etc it uses the local paths for Refills etc. Reason wins there. On the other hand, complex projects with big audio clips will be way better handled in Reaper.
- separate outputs creating lots of tracks in the arrange view. It gets messy. Track folders helps a lot and I think you can hide tracks, and there may be some workarounds

Of interest:
- Reaper has MIDI keyboard step entry! I've been wanting this for years in Reason. Only thing, now that I have it, I never use it haha!
Win 10 64-bit | :reason: 11 | Reaper | Scarlet 18i8 | M-Audio Code 61 | KRK VXT-6 | JX-8P | System-8 | D-05 | JP-08 | Sirin

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QVprod
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Post 07 Mar 2021

Personal issue with Reaper is loading plugins and creating sends. Every other DAW has a better workflow. Never got on with the pop up menu to choose plugins. Sends are routed manually but it’s more convoluted than the manual routing in Pro Tools. Granted I haven used it since V4, so maybe some this has been improved.

Goriila Texas
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Location: Houston TX

Post 08 Mar 2021

Reaper is for people who like to tweak a lot a customize everything under the hood of DAW. Diving deep into manuals instead of making music. No way you load it and create music right away, as someone already mentioned it's hotkey centric. I would recommend giving Studio One chance.

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tronam
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Post 08 Mar 2021

bxbrkrz wrote:
07 Mar 2021
I checked my email. I purchased a Reaper license in July, 2007. LOL! It was mostly to test VSTs out. It's a great prog, but I could not gel with it back then. Never tried it again when VST became a thing in Reason. I loved all the skins they had for it. That was fun.
That sounds like me with FL Studio. I've owned it since the Fruity Loops days and never gelled with it. I install it occasionally and then uninstall it. I've been trying to "get it" recently though, but aspects of its workflow still feel bafflingly alien to me. I should check back in with Reaper; It's been about 5 years since I tried it last.

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Jagwah
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Post 08 Mar 2021

Great feedback everybody thank you! There is a 60 day trial as mentioned which is cool and it also has video editing support, but I watched a few videos and it brought me to these points here:
raymondh wrote:
07 Mar 2021
I don't really like:
- Remembering all the hot keys. Some things are front in centre in Reason that are not as obvious in Reaper. But once I learn the hotkeys, the potential is for a faster workflow.
Goriila Texas wrote:
08 Mar 2021
Reaper is for people who like to tweak a lot a customize everything under the hood of DAW. Diving deep into manuals instead of making music. No way you load it and create music right away, as someone already mentioned it's hotkey centric. I would recommend giving Studio One chance.
The video I watched showed what seemed like an hours work blindly following a tutorial just to set up a clip slice function. Is the idea for this to build Reaper into what you want, to customize it to suit you specifically, and to spend time doing this - so that then you can have a speedy work flow? I'm not sure at face value I am very cool with this, I am used to a lightning fast worklflow being fluent in Reason and learning a new DAW alone has been holding me back. To have a clunky beginning would be a no go.

Perhaps a thread asking people what DAWs they moved to and what that experience was like, maybe there is a clear winner to move to as a Reason user.

Thanks again for your thoughts!

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MannequinRaces
Posts: 1528
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Post 08 Mar 2021

Jagwah wrote:
08 Mar 2021
Great feedback everybody thank you! There is a 60 day trial as mentioned which is cool and it also has video editing support, but I watched a few videos and it brought me to these points here:
raymondh wrote:
07 Mar 2021
I don't really like:
- Remembering all the hot keys. Some things are front in centre in Reason that are not as obvious in Reaper. But once I learn the hotkeys, the potential is for a faster workflow.
Goriila Texas wrote:
08 Mar 2021
Reaper is for people who like to tweak a lot a customize everything under the hood of DAW. Diving deep into manuals instead of making music. No way you load it and create music right away, as someone already mentioned it's hotkey centric. I would recommend giving Studio One chance.
The video I watched showed what seemed like an hours work blindly following a tutorial just to set up a clip slice function. Is the idea for this to build Reaper into what you want, to customize it to suit you specifically, and to spend time doing this - so that then you can have a speedy work flow? I'm not sure at face value I am very cool with this, I am used to a lightning fast worklflow being fluent in Reason and learning a new DAW alone has been holding me back. To have a clunky beginning would be a no go.

Perhaps a thread asking people what DAWs they moved to and what that experience was like, maybe there is a clear winner to move to as a Reason user.

Thanks again for your thoughts!
Just curious what you feel is missing from Reason for YOU?

DaveyG
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Post 08 Mar 2021

For me Reaper is TOO customizable. I know some people love that aspect but it means that when you Google for how to do something there are sometimes too many different results. But definitely try it for yourself.

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Jagwah
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Post 08 Mar 2021

MannequinRaces wrote:
08 Mar 2021
Just curious what you feel is missing from Reason for YOU?
First and foremost is an easy one for me - video editing support. I begged and campaigned and made videos and threads and support tickets for years on end. A few years ago I realized what an absolute waste of time that all was. Ryan Harlin even mentioned he would like it too, but you know - the hierarchy of requests and the rate they trickle down in made this a total pipe dream even now all these years later. Man it would have been so cool, with the available transient slicing in Reason it would have been wild.

In the same vein, I'd love to see endless sequencer upgrades, there's so many, why not be able to pull out clips of triads in a certain key, why not a have a colour palette for clips, what about colour highlighting the sequencer to a certain key, or a score editor. Not that one DAW has all these features but the lack of forward direction with Reason's sequencer makes all the rest seem more advanced, I'd like to experience a more advanced sequencer with features I don't even know about that could make me work differently / more efficiently / more creatively. I'm sure Live would have some surprises for me at least.

Basically every feature that burns when other DAWs seem able to implement them - available technology out there, an image to sound generator for instance like FL studios has since forever- I just wanted to be able to play around with cool things like this instead of just knowing about them and never getting to try them myself as a Reason user.

Don't get me wrong I love Reason and can be content using it with Sony Vegas for my all important video editing capabilities (which would never be as good as Reason itself having this feature but yeah, maybe in a few hundred years), it's just like a growing itch knowing other DAWs advance constantly in ways that could benefit me, far beyond endless new synths and effect devices.

EdGrip
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Joined: 03 Jun 2016

Post 08 Mar 2021

I think Reaper is about the most CPU-efficient DAW there is if you just want to run loads of things at once. I've taken to using it for sampling from YouTube.

sdst
Posts: 863
Joined: 14 Jun 2015

Post 08 Mar 2021

I use both, it's good to have 2
QVprod wrote:
07 Mar 2021
Personal issue with Reaper is loading plugins and creating sends. Every other DAW has a better workflow.
Reaper has wires to route almost like Reason, there's also script to do things in seconds

is the fastest DAW when you know actions

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bxbrkrz
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Post 08 Mar 2021

tronam wrote:
08 Mar 2021
bxbrkrz wrote:
07 Mar 2021
I checked my email. I purchased a Reaper license in July, 2007. LOL! It was mostly to test VSTs out. It's a great prog, but I could not gel with it back then. Never tried it again when VST became a thing in Reason. I loved all the skins they had for it. That was fun.
That sounds like me with FL Studio. I've owned it since the Fruity Loops days and never gelled with it. I install it occasionally and then uninstall it. I've been trying to "get it" recently though, but aspects of its workflow still feel bafflingly alien to me. I should check back in with Reaper; It's been about 5 years since I tried it last.
Reaper would've been perfect if I was a Protools user, recording gear and musicians all the time. That's how I felt back then.
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cmstrike
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Post 08 Mar 2021

For what it's worth, last year I moved to Reaper from Adobe Audition for my work (radio & podcast production/editing) and I've never been happier. Yes, it takes time if you want to customize everything (actions, shortcuts, toolbars, etc.) to fit your workflow, but along the way I've discovered new ways of working that have improved my workflow in ways I'd never thought of before. A lot of this is because of the very active user community and those who share custom actions and scripts that aren't natively built into Reaper, along with the great tutorials on YouTube from channels like Reaper Mania and The Reaper Blog.

I'm currently in the process of customizing Reaper with project & track templates for music production. I've been making music in Reason since 2006 and have never been able to convince myself to seriously give anything else a shot, but now I'm exploring what I can do with Reaper (along with the RRP and various plug-ins) and have been very pleasantly surprised with the results. Again, it takes time to set things up in a way that works for you. Once you've done that, though, you'll be very glad that you took that time and you will have learned more about Reaper in the process.

That's not a process that everyone wants to go through, though. If you want to be ready to go right from the start, you might be better off looking into something like Studio One (which I owned at one point and sold in favor of Reaper).

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MannequinRaces
Posts: 1528
Joined: 18 Jan 2015

Post 08 Mar 2021

Jagwah wrote:
08 Mar 2021
MannequinRaces wrote:
08 Mar 2021
Just curious what you feel is missing from Reason for YOU?
First and foremost is an easy one for me - video editing support. I begged and campaigned and made videos and threads and support tickets for years on end. A few years ago I realized what an absolute waste of time that all was. Ryan Harlin even mentioned he would like it too, but you know - the hierarchy of requests and the rate they trickle down in made this a total pipe dream even now all these years later. Man it would have been so cool, with the available transient slicing in Reason it would have been wild.

In the same vein, I'd love to see endless sequencer upgrades, there's so many, why not be able to pull out clips of triads in a certain key, why not a have a colour palette for clips, what about colour highlighting the sequencer to a certain key, or a score editor. Not that one DAW has all these features but the lack of forward direction with Reason's sequencer makes all the rest seem more advanced, I'd like to experience a more advanced sequencer with features I don't even know about that could make me work differently / more efficiently / more creatively. I'm sure Live would have some surprises for me at least.

Basically every feature that burns when other DAWs seem able to implement them - available technology out there, an image to sound generator for instance like FL studios has since forever- I just wanted to be able to play around with cool things like this instead of just knowing about them and never getting to try them myself as a Reason user.

Don't get me wrong I love Reason and can be content using it with Sony Vegas for my all important video editing capabilities (which would never be as good as Reason itself having this feature but yeah, maybe in a few hundred years), it's just like a growing itch knowing other DAWs advance constantly in ways that could benefit me, far beyond endless new synths and effect devices.
All very valid points. Thank you for taking the time to write it all out. If I ever add another DAW to my workflow Reaper is the front runner. I actually hope R+ is a success so that money can be used to fuel more core DAW development. The next year or two will really show what the future direction holds I think. Best of luck to you finding a complimentary fit for Reason whether it’s Reaper or another DAW.

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EnochLight
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Post 08 Mar 2021

* raises hand * :lol:

I used Reaper on and off for sometime prior to Reason 9.5, as I needed VST support. Here's my hot take: Reaper is the sort of DAW where you can tell the devs focused on giving you all the things, (and doing a great job at it) without first figuring out how to keep the DAW actually inspiring. I have never felt inspired in Reaper, not in the least - it's just a convoluted mess to me. That said, feature-wise it's hard to beat. And while they do sell perpetual licenses, you can keep using it forever for free if you just click past the nag screen. :thumbup:
Win 10 | Reason 11 Suite |  Studio 1 4.6 | i7 3770k @ 3.5 Ghz | 16 GB RAM | Reactor 1TB SSD | RME Babyface Pro | Panorama P-4 | Akai MPC Live 2 & Force | Roland System 8, TR-8 7x7 Expansion, MX1, JX8P, TB3 | Ensoniq SQ1 Plus | Korg Minilogue XD

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Billy+
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Post 08 Mar 2021

EnochLight wrote:
08 Mar 2021
* raises hand * :lol:

I used Reaper on and off for sometime prior to Reason 9.5, as I needed VST support. Here's my hot take: Reaper is the sort of DAW where you can tell the devs focused on giving you all the things, (and doing a great job at it) without first figuring out how to keep the DAW actually inspiring. I have never felt inspired in Reaper, not in the least - it's just a convoluted mess to me. That said, feature-wise it's hard to beat. And while they do sell perpetual licenses, you can keep using it forever for free if you just click past the nag screen. :thumbup:
Yeah I just can't get passed even installing it, it just looks really completely different and wrong I probably should give it a try as is free / cheap and very extendable but I'm still holding out that props will pull a blinder - I don't know why but I guess we all need a little hope in life :?
ˁ˚ᴥ˚ˀ Time for a good long sleep ˁ˚ᴥ˚ˀ

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guitfnky
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Post 08 Mar 2021

I kept wanting to “get” Reaper, but just never did. from what I understand, it’s amazing once you take the time to really learn it, and customize it to your specific workflow.

that’s really intriguing, in theory, but in practice, I just don’t have the attention span to spend weeks and months getting it (and myself) where I need to be.

jjrh
Posts: 30
Joined: 19 May 2019

Post 02 Jun 2021

I have been testing Reaper out and my main gripes so far has been:
  • keeping track and finding the window I want. It was bad enough in reason when you were trying to see two VST instruments but now that's the case for every instrument and effect!
  • Further just seeing everything in a single window (like the rack) turns out to be really useful, like I really want to see the drummachine at the same time as the compressor and while I can detach all that to their own windows showing them all in a single window doesn't seem to be possible.
  • Lack of blocks - I use this constantly in reason for trying out something new, tweaking a idea and simply keeping the piece i'm working on front and centre
  • Right click a instrument/effect/whatever param to create a automation track for it
  • Automation tracks are kinda wonky for drawing though I suspect that's more me being unfamiliar (I also can't seem to figure out how to bring up a text box to set a point to a specific value but I know you can do that I just don't know how)
  • folders are sorta weird, especially when you just want to group things logically but don't want them routed as a group.
  • Browsing effects/instruments don't show a image of the device - which I apparently relied on more than I thought because i'm constantly trying to remember what x,y,z is actually named.
  • Midi and CV stuff overall seems like it could be better and in general the software seems more targeted at recording, but I am possibly just getting that impression because i'm unfamiliar and so used to Reason.
  • Can't open refill's and there doesn't appear to be a way to extract the files in a refill - but that's props fault not Reapers.
Things I like:
  • Midi VST's - like that one of the big reasons I initially started giving reaper a go, there are a lot of nice arp, chord tools, sequencers, etc out there.
  • Complicated routing is super fast and clear, side chaining 50 instruments is just as clean and concise as one. The big issues with reason is you end up with a zillion spider splitter devices and it can quickly become very hard to keep track of. That said, it can be a bit annoying when you're only doing this for a single thing.
  • It's super super fast/cpu efficient. VST's load faster, latency seems better, menus are faster, even stuff like browsing/playing media files is faster and while I haven't tried it yet, I understand there is a feature to 'freeze' a track so the effects are heard but the plugins are disengaged and not eating up CPU.
  • Macros and scripts for everything. Common things that are time consuming and painful tend to have a existing macro - like want a stutter sorta thing? There is a script for that (
    ). If it doesn't exist I can write one myself.
  • Hot keys for everything - while it's daunting and will take me a good chunk of time, the pay off is massive.
  • Lots of free plugins from the community that at least to me sound pretty alright and the midi js plugins I have tried are awesome and looking at the code pretty simple.
  • Price - honestly don't know how they make money while keeping up with the pace of development - but i'm not complaining. At $60 for a personal license and $225 for a commercial one even if you only use reaper in a few scenarios (like for the final mix) that's peanuts compared to alternatives. I mean I'm going to spend more on the coming reason upgrade.
  • Vibrant active community of developers and users writing plugins,scripts,skins,etc
  • Active development that from what I have seen appears to keeping up with the bleeding edge.
  • Linux support - other than games and music everything else is on linux so while plugin support will keep me from
I don't have any experience with other DAWs like ableton,cubase,bitwig,studioone,fruityloops,etc so my only frame of reference is 10+ years of Reason usage so what I like and dislike probably should be taken with a grain of salt.

So far Reaper seems pretty great and as far as I can tell anything other DAWs can do reaper can too (but maybe not as intuitively) , since reason works as a VST I have access to all the instruments and effects I know inside out. At $60 if I simply can't adjust it's far less painful than if I dropped $400 on studio one, or the almost $900 on Cubase.

I'd be interested if anyone else using reaper has any tips or suggestions for folks coming from Reason.

electricthing
Posts: 59
Joined: 08 May 2018

Post 02 Jun 2021

I used Reaper from 2012 for 6 years. Before that Cubase for 13 years. Also bought FL Studio but that did not feel nice for mixing, I liked the beatmaking.
Stopped Cubase because I did not like Cubase new direction with Yamaha (update prices) and to be fair stopped using a DAW professionally.
In 2018 I tried Reason and liked it better for inspiration and less messy, but Reason did not feel easy to mix for me.
So I tried the free Cakewalk and Studio One. Liked them both but Studio One a bit better.
So being interested in DAWs, as you can tell, I also tried Live LE and some others.

Now I stick to Studio One and Reason. Come to think of it; I still have Cubase Essential and sometimes think; shall I upgrade to Cubase Artist? :cry:

I like Studio One because it is simple, uncluttered to me. With Reaper I always had to figure out again how things worked that I did not do often, like record audio in layers etc, My brain hurt. Editing I did not like. And the program was not inspiring me. I was not sure about the quality of the midi recording's timing. Sometimes did not recognise what I had played.
It feels like a wordprocessor turned into something for audio to me.
I used it until the previous version. I even had the nerve to state on the Reaper forum that I did not liked the sound of Reaper, compared to other DAWs and I was attacked like I was a heretic on that so much praised , so friendly, helpfull forum, lol.
I would advice to try Studio One. On KVR marketplace you can get it for under $200 and the Artist version even for under $40. S1 Artist 5 is more complete than S1 Artist 4 was.
In the latest comparison I did with Daws I also tried the latest FL Studio again since I have it and it has improved a lot for mixing, I even liked using it for that but the resulted sound of the mix was not good to me, maybe I did something wrong.

jjrh
Posts: 30
Joined: 19 May 2019

Post 02 Jun 2021

electricthing wrote:
02 Jun 2021
It feels like a wordprocessor turned into something for audio to me.
That's one thing that attracted me to reaper - it seems like the emacs of DAWs.
electricthing wrote:
02 Jun 2021
I used it until the previous version. I even had the nerve to state on the Reaper forum that I did not liked the sound of Reaper, compared to other DAWs and I was attacked like I was a heretic on that so much praised , so friendly, helpfull forum, lol.
That's probably true posting on a forum for any DAW and unless there is a actual bug it's kinda the worst thing you can say about any music thing (even though it's really just personal preference).

electricthing
Posts: 59
Joined: 08 May 2018

Post 02 Jun 2021

jjrh wrote:
02 Jun 2021
electricthing wrote:
02 Jun 2021
It feels like a wordprocessor turned into something for audio to me.
That's one thing that attracted me to reaper - it seems like the emacs of DAWs.
electricthing wrote:
02 Jun 2021
I used it until the previous version. I even had the nerve to state on the Reaper forum that I did not liked the sound of Reaper, compared to other DAWs and I was attacked like I was a heretic on that so much praised , so friendly, helpfull forum, lol.
That's probably true posting on a forum for any DAW and unless there is a actual bug it's kinda the worst thing you can say about any music thing (even though it's really just personal preference).
Yeah, I guess you are right. I am just a bit allergic to people in a group attacking one unpopular opinion. It comes over as smugness to me (is that a word?) and then I don't want to back down and respond with the same tone and attitude I get thrown at me. Not too often, luckily.
Anyway; I prefered VI's sound in S1, Reason and FL to Reaper.
Nowadays when somebody expresses their preference for the sound of one Daw they are not that automatically attacked by the 'null gang' as it used to be.
Anyway; Reaper has good things going for it but I prefer Studio One and Reason.

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