Cubase LE 11 Free Update

Hi, performed a quick search here, but didn’t see anyone with a similar issue (sorry if this has been asked in the past).

Just received a free update (unsolicited from Steinberg) to Cubase LE 11 from my ‘old’ Cubase, which hasn’t been very stable since upgrading my Mac to Big Sur. I have the USB-eLicenser, and when I tried to apply the upgrade, no valid products were found. When I checked my email history, I ‘upgraded’ from an older LE to a newer Cubase Elements, and now Cubase LE isn’t in my eLicenser anymore, which is why I can’t select it when upgrading to LE 11.

Did Steinberg just mistakenly send me a free upgrade, not checking that I used my previous LE to upgrade to Elements? I can’t reinstall the LE, since the licenser says that the license has already been used.


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I just got two such emails … no clue as to what’s going on.

I did have to reactivate a very old Cubase LE recently (version 6) to move it to a newer device and, after the activation process, I uninstalled 6 and installed 11, and it ran, so it almost looks like everyone gets a free LE upgrade.

Bizarrely, because you paid to upgrade from LE to Elements, you’ve missed out, however if you do now (Dec 2021) upgrade your Elements to 11, you’ll get a free Elements 12 when it’s released, which you’ll be able to activate on up to three devices, which is not a bad deal at all.

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Thanks very much - first for validating that I’m not the only one receiving “upgrade” offers, and second for validating my thoughts that I’ve kind of missed out on the upgrade. As for the paid upgrade to Elements 11, I am setting up my old Mac Pro as a workstation and still have my laptop, so the three licenses will be handy (still shy of NI and Arturia though, which have 5).

Thanks again!

Got the email and installed LE 11 on my old Mac (running High Sierra) today where I was still using LE 6. Works fine.

Hi MrSoundman,

I see that Elements 12 is out, but I don’t see a way to update the one I purchased in Dec for free; do you know if I have to send support an email, or is there another process, or do I have to pay additional $$$. Not a big deal in any case - just would like to know what the process is…


You need to do the grace period check in the “Steinberg Activation Manager” (SAM). If you don’t have the SAM already installed, you can get it via the “Steinberg Download Assistant”.

Ah - great; thanks very much!

Did not have SAM installed anywhere, but the process was fairly straightforward after that. Oddly, Cubase Elements 12 did not appear under “My Products” on one of my computers, but when I manually ran the installer, it turns out that Elements 12 isn’t supported on Mojave (but of course, I have other AVID products that aren’t supported after Mojave!). Looks like I’m ‘stuck’ on 11 on my server, but will use my laptop to run 12.

Thanks again!