cubase AI CUBASE LE CUBASE Elements confused?

ok so it seems that there is
cubase AI
ANd the version i have which is

can someone explain what this means please.


Try this:
Cubase comparison

All three versions own the same installer.

So it depends on your activated/registered license which version will open on yor PC.

It is indeed a bit confusing.

As far as I’m aware you can only purchase Cubase, Cubase Artist and Cubase Elements. The latest version of Elements is 7, but the first version was just ‘Cubase Elements’. Cubase AI evolved into Elements and is no longer for sale (if I recall correctly). And Cubase LE is the version that is sometimes bundled with certain hardware/software.

I think Cubase Elements has it’s own installer?

No, it has not.

Depending on the activated license you can use the specific features of the LE/AI or Elements version.

Ah, I thought you meant Cubase/Artist/Elements all had the same installer.

No, Cubase full and Artist version have only one installer and LE/AI/Elements have one - different - installer.

So there are just two installers for five program versions.

Hi All

I purchased a CMC controller and got a copy of “AI Elements 7” , only about a month ago. Just mentioning it:-). I also did it a while back and upgraded that version of AI to Elements 7 for my spare machine cost $39 I think. LE was a version that came with some other hardware or other!!!

Best Regards


This whole situation is very confusing, and Steinberg could do a lot by cleaning up the website and updating the product comparisons to reflect the current product line. But to summarize and clarify what’s already mostly been said:

The order of Cubase versions, in terms of completeness/functionality is:

  1. Cubase
  2. Cubase Artist
  3. Cubase Elements
  4. Cubase AI
  5. Cubase LE

I’ve never owned Cubase Artist, but my impression is that Artist and Full Cubase do have separate installers (their download sizes are different on the Steinberg download page), however there is indeed only a single installer for the three products Elements, AI, and LE, and it’s your activation key that determines which product you get to use.

In terms of core functionality of the DAW environment, Cubase AI and LE appear to be the same (and both are more limited than Elements in this regard).

The main difference between AI and LE appears to be that AI includes several plugins that LE does not. And Elements includes some plugins that neither AI or LE have.

So, AI has more plugins than LE does, and Elements has more plugins, more features, and fewer restrictions than both of them.

The weirdest thing about the combined installer is that it places an icon on your desktop named “Cubase LE AI Elements 7”. The only indications of the actual Cubase version you’re using will be the startup splash screen (it will only show the name of the activated product), and the Help > About entry once the program’s loaded.