Cubase Pro 10.5 or Studio One Pro 5

ALittleNightMusic

Senior Member
Which limitations do you mean? I've been making orchestral mock-ups with Studio One for 8 years. And I agree that there were BIG limitations in terms of MIDI editing and template work in version 2 or still in version 3. But I don't notice any limitation anymore... all my bigger long-term feature wishes have been added in version 4 and finally in version 5.
Since you don't use Cubase, I would imagine the differences don't stand out to you - and that's great! Ignorance is bliss as they say. If S1 does what you need without limitation, embrace it. There's not much value in asking others "what features are you missing" unless you have a direct connection to Presonus somehow. Plenty of the limitations show up in the S1 feature requests. I own the latest versions of both along with Logic, PT, and Ableton. Due to that, I get to see the pros and cons of each. S1 is improving, but still has a way to go (articulation maps were only just added, but are very basic, their macro functionality is also pretty basic compared to Cubase, it has significantly worse CPU utilization on Mac, Cubase has way more advanced marker tracks, the UI customization and color choices are still piss poor, external controller support has been lacking for a long time, the MIDI editing is still not as good as Cubase, etc). I don't have time or interest to list out every limitation I face in S1 - because I don't care to use it now compared to Cubase (or more likely, Logic).

To the OP, both have demos - try them and make the decision for yourself.
 

Lukas

Keyboardist / composer
I would imagine the differences don't stand out to you - and that's great! Ignorance is bliss as they say. If S1 does what you need without limitation, embrace it.
There's not much value in asking others "what features are you missing" unless you have a direct connection to Presonus somehow.
I don't think so. I think some functionality in Studio One (especially commands that are hidden in the "commands" list and not exposed in the GUI) is still not as obvious as it could be so people sometimes think something is missing although it's not. That's why I started a Studio One video tutorial series on MIDI editing and workflow topics some years ago. I have a pretty good connection to PreSonus and actually most of the "new" MIDI features in Studio One 3 and 4 have been added because I (and of course many other users) had missed it, especially the note actions in 4.5. I'm also a moderator on answers.presonus.com so I have a pretty decent overview of the pending and completed feature requests.

You mentioned the moderate MIDI features but what you've listed in your last posting was mostly not about MIDI (except articulation management and MIDI editing). So I'm interested in the details ;) But if you don't have time or interest to tell is, that's perfectly fine with me.
 

khollister

Senior Member
So I have been doing more experimentation on the S1 CPU overload issue. My test project has 4xKontakt (Noire), 4xDiva (great/"Beauty Pad"), 4x Diva (great/"Deep Space Diva"), 4x Repro-5 (no HQ/"Ghost Ship") and 6xNADA ("Astral Echos") with a 4 voice chord progession on all tracks.

I have also tried my Babyface Pro in addition to the Apollo X6. On all 3 platforms I used an empty audio track for focus so all tracks playing were not record armed or monitored. iMac Pro 10 core. I did NOT have multi-core enabled on any of the U-he stuff. Results as follows:

LPX - approx 75% load across 19 cores, last core (live core) quiet, no significant difference between RME/UAD. Process buffer Normal

Cubase 10.5 - approx 75% average load, minimal peak load, no significant difference between interfaces. ASIO Guard High is slightly better than Normal.

Studio One 5 - trainwreck overload even with Process buffer to Maximum. Interestingly, it is much better with the RME, but still unusable.

The really telling part is that playing a stack live works pretty well on S1 - not too much worse than LPX/Cubase. It appears that the real issue for me is that the process buffer doesn't work. And while the CPU load on the Apollo is marginally better than the Babyface Pro on LPX & Cubase, the UAD driver apparently sucks on S1. Even so, there is still something serioously wrong with the process buffer operation even with the RME.

I'm going to try this on my MBP with the RME later out of curiosity. Ihave LPX and S1 installed there.

My impression of Cubase 10.5 is better than 9.5 (GUI), but while it offers features and speed of operation in certain things compared to LPX, LPX's GUI is more logically laid out (at the expense sometimes of more clicks) and offers track stacks (which Cubase doesn't have an analog to AFAIK).

I have an older PC I built a few years ago to use with Cubase which is sitting unused. I may fire it up, insstall 10.5 and try the RME with S1 to see what happens on Windows 10.

But for me currently, S1 5 is completely unusable on the Mac - money down the drain.
 

EgM

Game music!
I'm currently on 256 samples and my S1 Dropout Protection is set to maximum (that all tracks / instruments / plug-ins are running on the maximum buffer size and only the "active" track which is armed for recording uses 256 samples). If I need to record piano tracks or fast synth solos, I switch to 128. My jazz/funk/fusion arrangements are usually more lightweight and for my orchestral projects don't need the lowest available latency. I use an RME HDSP 3296.


Which features are you missing...? :) I suppose "assign MIDI channels to specific notes" refers to switching articulations when working with a multitimbral VSTi like Kontakt / SINE Player / PLAY with different articulations on different MIDI channels? It's true, that's currently not possible from a single track. But what else is missing for you?
Exactly, other than that there is nothing missing for me and is still my favorite of 'em all.
 

StefanoM

Senior Sound Designer & Composer
I've Nuendo, Cubase Pro, ProTools, Logic, Studio One & Reaper.

I'm an advanced user of all These DAW.

I Use Nuendo and ProTools, since 1998.

So,

I use Studio One since version 2.5 but until now It was a DAW installed on my computer, but I ever used It professionally.

I always upgraded it, I saw Grow UP it, and NOW the Version V5 is quite Perfect.

Cubase has more features, but many of these are not really useful, Cubase has a heavy engine.

Cubase has the MIDI that is a little bit advanced but, I don't use many of these " advanced" Features, every day.

Cubase has a GUI that is really redundant. Studio One has a Cleaner and Faster GUI.

I Love Cubase, but for Now, for Music Production, I work really faster with Studio One.

Best Performance, Best Engine, Best Workflow.

Yeah, S1 doesn't have a real Video Track, but it's coming.

At this moment, Nuendo is my First DAW when I work on Audio Post Production, and advanced Mixing Processing ( Multichannel )

Studio One V5 is my first DAW for general use, music production, scoring, recording, Mixing & Mastering.

Ste
 

markleake

Recovering sale addict
S1 has tabbed CC lanes AND multiple if you want. Cubase is a screen real-estate hog
S1 notation is great and fast to work in, fits any # of notes into a tuplet/run
S1 had track data import before Cubase, they just didn't sell it as a big update item.
S1 has a transform tool similar to the velocity compression handles in Cubase.
S1 navigation and workflow is vastly superior over all. It's not even a contest.
S1 is far better at doing a daytime theme if you use a glossy laptop outside (Surface Book here)
S1 has no dongle. As a Surface user, I hardly ever get out my key anymore. Why bother?
S1 has better humanize and mass note editing options by far, easier to access by default, etc.
S1 has vastly superior vst CPU monitoring. Clipping warnings on export and bouncing.
S1 has a -200MB installer, easy for mobile or quick re-up time. Cubase installers can be clunky.
S1 has user-voted features. Dev takes time, but they're building a reputation for a reason.
S1 was started by a former Steinberg dev manager & the author of VST3, plus they hired Logic and Pro Tools developers to switch companies. Cut-throat, but smart for dev too. Not AVID, at least. ;)

Cubase has the transform feature that is a clearly more agile.
Cubase is a bit more stable. S1 + VEP is stable for me, but... I avoid dongles, so Cubase wins here. (They've had an unstable history. All devs have periods. So IMHO, I'd wait either one out here)
Cubase expression maps are more flexible, but take vastly more work than StaffPad to use. Vastly.
Cubase video track is great. Not perfect, but S1's video player isn't as agile.
Both have curve editing, but Cubase did a really nice job with theirs for mouse drawing.
Cubase has Dorico integration on the way. Dorico looks beautiful, shiny, and beautiful.
Cubase crashes if I detach my Surface Screen (dongle), instead of temporarily freezing. :mad:
Cubase velocity compression handles are faster to access than the transform tool. Not big, but faster.

I prefer Studio One. It has hiccups, but after using both for years, and going back and forth for various projects, I've become used to both and can comfortably use either back and forth now. S1 just clearly wins in so many small polished ways that it makes life easier. Not completely, but mostly for me. Steinberg is slower to think about UX. If they catch-up, S1 is in trouble. But if S1 adds better film features & works out stability, Steinberg is in trouble. All companies have instable periods. Depends on the build. They're fairly equal, just different.

Sorry for the novel (and some opinions), but hopefully it helps.
Thanks for putting the effort into comparing them. Is very useful to many people... well, me at least. :thumbsup:
 

Babe

Member
I went back to S1 from Cubase when S1 came out with articulation maps. I left S1 back when Cubase came out with their maps. The maps in Cubase are much better but the ones in S1 are adequate and in their infancy.

The kicker for me in S1 is the midi editing. (I use midi only.) The midi lanes in S1 are sooooo much better. I also love how the track automation integrates with track automation in S1. (Track automation is a misnomer as it's actually channel automation. This is what I hate most about S1. If you change the channel of the track, the automation doesn't follow. When you add a track with a different channel, you can't copy which parameters you want from another track. Big PIA.) What I do is set the default value for each parameter in track automation. If you don't change the parameter in the part, you will get the default value. You don't have to worry about changing back to the default value if you do a change.
 

markleake

Recovering sale addict
Question... looking at the Studio One "Compare Versions" page, it looks like the Artist version has almost all the features you'd need for producing music using VSTs. Am I missing something?
 

Film Sounds

New Member
Question... looking at the Studio One "Compare Versions" page, it looks like the Artist version has almost all the features you'd need for producing music using VSTs. Am I missing something?
Studio One Prime (the free version) actually has enough to do quite a lot, just with restrictions like single VST's, no multi's. If you're not thinking pro, I'd look at the list of features on Prime just to be sure even that wouldn't work for you.

Some freemium options are trickery to get you in, but you don't really have much choice other than upgrading. S1 Prime & FL Studio are probably the best free/low-mid options out there, being robust enough in features that many could actually get use out of. I'd certainly be happy if everyone adopted FL Studio's pricing model.

I'm a fan of free updates for life and holding dev roadmaps accountable to existing users. ;)
 

Lukas

Keyboardist / composer
Studio One Prime (the free version) actually has enough to do quite a lot, just with restrictions like single VST's, no multi's
What do you mean by "single VSTs, no multis"? Studio One Prime does not support 3rd party plug-ins (VST, AU) or Rewire. So only stock plugins (instruments and effects) can be used.

It's new that the Artist version (V5) now has VST/AU included... so I agree - if someone does not need the Pro features like NoteFX, Chord Track, Melodyne integration, Multi Instruments, Video, Score View etc., it's a pretty good deal I think :)
 

markleake

Recovering sale addict
What do you mean by "single VSTs, no multis"? Studio One Prime does not support 3rd party plug-ins (VST, AU) or Rewire. So only stock plugins (instruments and effects) can be used.

It's new that the Artist version (V5) now has VST/AU included... so I agree - if someone does not need the Pro features like NoteFX, Chord Track, Melodyne integration, Multi Instruments, Video, Score View etc., it's a pretty good deal I think :)
Yeah, that was my question. Just looking at the listed differences, it seems the Artist version makes it possible to do most composing tasks with VSTs without any need of the Pro version.

I don't think anyone's gonna be interested in the free version if into composing.

My interest is more for people who don't write to video or use some of those "extras" (that most of us probably don't use, or have alternatives for), then S1 Artist seems to work fine. Am I misunderstanding something here? Why would you need Pro? It doesn't seem to cut down on number of tracks and such like the cheaper version of Cubase does.

What does "Multi Instrument" mean?
 

Film Sounds

New Member
What do you mean by "single VSTs, no multis"? Studio One Prime does not support 3rd party plug-ins (VST, AU) or Rewire. So only stock plugins (instruments and effects) can be used.

It's new that the Artist version (V5) now has VST/AU included... so I agree - if someone does not need the Pro features like NoteFX, Chord Track, Melodyne integration, Multi Instruments, Video, Score View etc., it's a pretty good deal I think :)
I stand corrected. I must have misread something and it stuck with me. I thought it would load a VST, but not allow multiple instrument tracks on that VST.

With that in mind, the feature list is fairly robust if in-house only, but I'd rather drop other features and include vst. That's me.
 
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Lukas

Keyboardist / composer
What does "Multi Instrument" mean?
It's a special instrument type which basically is a containern for multiple instruments that can be stacked or split. Every instrument within a Multi Instrument can have its own NoteFX (like Arpeggiator, Chorder, Repeater) and insert FX.

And they can be saved as Multi Instrument presets.

If you have an instrument track with an instrument already assigned and you drag another instrument on that same track, you get asked if you want to replace the old instrument or combine both. If you choose "Combine" a Multi Instrument is created.

I stand corrected. I must have misread something and it stuck with me. I thought it would load a VST, but not allow multiple instrument tracks on that VST.
Maybe what you read was about Multi Instruments. Would make sense to me.
 
The fact is that S1 does not really offer much over Cubase (at least in the film scoring realm) other than a prettier looking GUI. While S1 catches up to Cubase, Cubase is already working on the next thing. And that is even if S1's goal is to catch up to Cubase. Imo I feel as though they should focus on the EDM and electronic music market as that really seems to be S1s strengths. Unless they come up with something really innovative, I doubt you will see any pro composers switching over from Cubase/ Logic.

Or I could be totally wrong and in 5 years everyone will be using S1 and Steinberg will crumble like an oatmeal cookie. Who knows.
 

Snarf

Member
Both have curve editing, but Cubase did a really nice job with theirs for mouse drawing.
Interesting, could you tell a bit more about this? I don't quite understand what you mean. Are you saying Cubase allows better/smoother curves when drawing in CC automation? If so, have you turned the automation reduction down in Studio One? (the default is pretty high, which makes drawing automation feel 'stiff')

Cubase velocity compression handles are faster to access than the transform tool. Not big, but faster.
A tip for those who don't know, instead of pressing 3 repeatedly (this is what I did when I started with Studio One - I kept wishing you could turn off some of these modes like sine and triangle etc), you can actually select the notes you want to edit and then press Alt+T for the transform tool!
 

Film Sounds

New Member
Interesting, could you tell a bit more about this? I don't quite understand what you mean. Are you saying Cubase allows better/smoother curves when drawing in CC automation?
Better curves. Custom curves.

In Studio One...



The bend 'in the middle' exponentially gets closer to the start. The more you bend, the more it moves. That's all it does. Period. Still useful and you can still add dots to get any performance. But, look at these Bezier curves:

I avoided grabbing my dongle to give a side by sided. It's like a resistance of effort thing for me now. But suffice it to say that the bend direction follows the mouse in Cubase, making it easier to shape the sound to the type of performance you want.



Not all crecendos are created equal, which is true of orchestral or synth writing for me.
 

khollister

Senior Member
An update on my gross CPU performance issue with S1 on my iMac Pro. I installed both Cubase 10.5 and S! 5 on a Windows machine I used as a Cubase host back in 2016 (now doing occasional duty as a VEP slave). I brought over the projects, installed the latest RME driver for my Babyface Pro, updated the VST's used in the test and let it rip.

Cubase did fairly well (I had to disable several tracks to get it to not overload - 6 core 6850K vs 10 core Xeon). I then tried the same cut down version in S1 - severe overloads. I had to chop it down by about 50% to get it to run.

I would love to know what I'm doing wrong, but S1 is completely unacceptable in terms of CPU efficiency for me on both platforms. The interesting thing is Cubase and S1 are reasonably close while live playing a stack of instruments, but when I record a bunch of tracks and play it back (nothing record armed, focus on a blank audio track), S1 goes to hell. I have ASIO Guard and the S1 process buffer on max settings.

Oh well, money wasted (should have done more testing before buying the crossgrade), but if I want a cross platform DAW, Cubase it is.
 

Film Sounds

New Member
Expression Maps vs S1, an overlooked point:

1) Hairpins & KS need linking in the S1 editors. Vote on my feature request here. :)
2) S1 doesn't need MIDI Channels in their mapping. They should absolutely not do this.

Spitfire, OT, EW, VSL... Kontakt + proprietary sampler messes. If a DAW dev cares about future users that don't want apps that require a tutorial to simply start using, they'll copy StaffPad here and focus on integration. -- I removed Spitfire's script and made mine work a lot like Aaron Venture results, just different. I don't need midi channels at all, have a far more agile and proper instrument, and it has 2 mics with full RR's on every playing technique on my Surface Book. How? By making smarter sampling decisions. I'll add more to my blog on this later on. Suffice it to say that sample devs should adapt to a well made DAW, not the other way around. Dorico integration is coming, but they still rely on an open ended mapping UX nightmare. S1 is minimal right now, but also quite able to do integration like StaffPad if they want to go that route, or just... keep it simple for their users. Maps are a terrible workflow compared to agile instruments.

Studio One is in a MUCH better position right now for this. I love saying this way, but I'd really rather ditch the workhorse tank full of features and get a simpler Tesla. I should have lead with this. Feature comparisons are one thing, but look at StaffPad. It has FAR less features, yet now that I'm past the handwriting learning curve (takes a week, really) I write faster than I ever have in a DAW. I'm not saying everyone should get SP cause of that. I'm saying that feature lists don't make a program great, otherwise the most bloated programs on Earth would be the best ones.
 

Film Sounds

New Member
I would love to know what I'm doing wrong... I have ASIO Guard and the S1 process buffer on max settings.... Oh well, money wasted (should have done more testing before buying the crossgrade)...
I've run 1,000+ instrument tracks in Studio One, hundreds of audio tracks, and experienced more stability than I had in Cubase for years... only to return to Cubase for a project and CRASH... well, I'll just click CRASH... constantly. And since then, I've had the opposite happen, where Cubase won the battle. DAW devs, plugin devs, MS/Apple, hardware, Intel... it's not you doing it wrong. It's multiple industries.

ASIO Guard and high buffers aren't always good. Someone told me to drop my buffer settings and ASIO guard on an i7 desktop with an RME AIO PCIe and it all suddenly worked. On my Surface Book 2, changed CPU power settings per this article, disalbed 48-192 rates in Asio4All, only using 44.1 or 48, as multiple outs caused an issue, and find the FL Studio ASIO driver with S1 a bit more stable (the driver installs with the FL Studio demo and there's no limit on using it).

The safest & simplest solution I've found is to pick your favorite DAW workflow & copy a working build down to the motherboard model & SSD. Or... order pizza, get a drill, & start "troubleshooting".