Cubase no longer film composer mainstay

Agreed. I am one of those ppl who just want the top package of everything. I am thinking to myself that it’s better to have it there when I need it.

I am the same way most of the time. And if you look at that video mentioned above, there are at least 5 or 6 features I would appreciate. But I’m not going to witch to Nuendo because I don’t believe Steinberg can or should sustain the investment to keep both platforms abreast of the competition.

I am just stunned that you are seriously advocating for more marketing with regards to Cubase. This is quite frankly the last thing needed here. In order to stay competitive, Steinberg needs to urgently address the massive quality problems in Cubase. Hitpoint detection…seriously? Sample rate conversion…absolutely the worst on the block. General instability, performance issue, inconsistent GUIs and workflow, topped with unfinished thus unreliable features at a premium price tag has taken its toll for sure…and rightfully so.

I mean, they are literally marketing great new features, such as new, resizable Macro windows. It is mind boggling.

If Cubase would become musical OS then everything would work much better. Could be created using linux or unix as a backbone. Or could be written from scratch. It wouldn’t run anything else. Such proprietary OS-Cubase would allow for much higher performance, more stability, lower overhead, and more opportunieties to inovate. From the moment you start you machine, you choose SOS (Steinberg OS), and it boots you straight to proj selection window. That would be a dream come true really if something like this would happen. At some point it will, but maybe it won’t be made by Steinberg.

RTLinux for example has been around for a long time and could’ve been used for something like this. But honestly at the end of the day, outside of a few specific low-latency scenarios (tracking etc.), the benefits are negligible, with huge downsides for practicality. Consumer operating systems are mostly good enough for audio work, so it’s hard to see the market for something like this.

Cubase is by far the best tool for film composing. No doubt.

Logic becomes more and more a toyish tool for beat and young loop producers. This is a fact.

By the way… you don’t seem to know this never resolved catastrophic latency mega bug in Logic…
Logic does not appear to compensate this for automation correctly. If you have a plugin that causes latency and automate parameters on it, then all of the automation will be out of time for the previous plugins.
Have a look, you definitely cannot work professionally with this issue:


Logic CONS:

no Folder in Folder
-limited customization
-no multiple midi CC view
-very complicated way when dealing with Multitimbral instruments!!! (aaargh)

  • no channel strip FX
  • 1 Movie per Track (oh man)
    When adding plugins there’s a very tiny bar for you to select.
    labeled ‘No Plug-in’ to remove a plugin.
    You can’t select it and hit delete. You can’t swipe it off.
    actions like ‘Remove DC Offset’, ‘Reverse’ and ‘Normalize’ are only available in the file editor.
    There’s on a single controller lane in the MIDI editor.
    Logic has no easy ways to adjust butted midi notes, selections of midi notes or any other major ways to adjust MIDI data.
    Logic has no Macro facility. There’s no integrated way to chain commands together to be triggered by a single key press.
    Track folders, which are purely organization tools, can only be 1 layer deep. That means you can have a folder with tracks. You can not have folders within folders.
    . You can not have summing stacks with summing stacks in them without some hacky workarounds that aren’t worth the effort.
    I butt heads with this one constantly when working in Logic. Especially so when dealing with drumkits where I want a ‘Drums’ summing stack, and then a summing stack for snare (top/bottom mic) and kick (kick in, kick beater, front-of-kick). I want those kick and snare summing stacks inside the drum summing stack. No can do in Logic.
    There is no way to search for a track in a project. If you want to find a track in Logic then you have to scroll, scroll, AND SCROLL.
    No mixer reset, Can’t left/middle/right zone mixer channels, Tiny faders.
    Logic does not appear to compensate this for automation correctly (see posting above). If you have a plugin that causes latency and automate parameters on it, then all of the automation will be out of time for the previous plugins. Bummer.
    If you solo a track in a summing stack, then you hear all the tracks in the summing stack, not the track you soloed.
    There’s no way quickly bypassing a row or column of plugins. There’s no way to bypass all plugins in a project either.
    You can already adjust the gain of a clip by adjusting the ‘Gain’ box in the track inspector, but that is not very convenient.
    Single layer VCA’s only.
    Communicating with Apple about issues with Logic is basically not possible unless you are a tester. You simply submit your issue in to a black box and wait. Rarely you may get a response, but that almost never happens…

Generally I find that both DAWs can accomplish the same things but…
I find Cubase to be more intuitive, particularly with multitimbral instruments and advanced MIDI editing.

I find the built-in channel audio tools to be more useful; EQ and compression are more transparent sounding and the saturation tools are quite good.

One BIG difference is audio editing. I always HATED editing audio in Logic but in Cubase it’s quite slick.

Movie bounce sometimes making the audio all white noise, Logic’s inability to use negative bar numbers without crashing, hard-to-wrangle automation, its wonky way of using multi-timbre instruments, its infuriatingly weird mixer that doesn’t respond to edit window track order, and sometimes the tracks just move to a completely different position and you can’t move them back, the piano roll’s lack of multiple CC lanes, a lack of an elegant way of editing MIDI data, a convoluted process when it comes to moving video or altering timecodes. And way more.

Cubase has note names in each of the roll events (but Logic has this now as well)
C. has multiple CC lanes in the editors
Piano Roll in each Arrange region
C has expression Maps, or rather: Everything related to articulations/CCs/Kontakt/ VI automation seems better in C (except that Logic has “Articulation ID” tags on a per note basis - which would great if it could be used directly with Kontakt libraries w/o third need for 3rd part products)
Better time stretching algorithm - although personally, I hardly work with audio files anymore
ASIO Direct Monitoring
The Control Room feature
Development Speed (there hasn’t been any major updates that’s relevant for what I fond most important in Logic for several years, and the Mac Pro and MacBook Pro development isn’t really happening either)
Audio to MIDI which translates pitch bends /vibrato/volume
Steinberg has a large staff working on Dorico ( new score editor), and Cubase and Dorico will hopefully be integrated
A better freeze which unloads/reloads Kontakt samples + partial freeze
Uncluttered automation view (nodes are only shown when you need them)
Auto Track Colour mode
Can switch/load/save preference files from the pref. area
Cubase seems to have a lot more key commands
And, in theory (and this used to be important to me): Global preset banks for external MIDI gear. It’s just that I only work with sample libraries now - my old synths are collecting dust. So that feature isn’t important for me anymore.

Audio editing IMO far superior in Cubase. I find sample editor in Logic horrible. Multiple tracks fade out in Cubase is as easy as selecting the tracks and dragging. In logic you have to use a tool and you can perform a fade in one track at a time
Variaudio built in pitch correction. No plugins, no offline rendering in the background.
Proper vu meters in the mixer
Offline effects processing (DOP is DOPE!)
Better pitch shift/time stretch algorithms by far (elastique)
For me midi workflow is better in Cubase. VST expression is a timesaver if you work with libraries.
Cubase has Volume adjustment on the audio event itself. Saves me a TON of time.

Cubase has - Expression Maps. No one else does this and they’re so awesome and so invaluable to composers

  • the score view. I know many people don’t use this but after diving deeply into it I was shocked at how powerful it is, and how easy it is to get professional looking scores once it’s all set up.
  • Notes in the piano roll view. Multiple controller lanes. The mixer. The Media Bay. Track visibility controls. Mixer view sets and visibility control. The amazing export window for stem bouncing. The Logical Editor!

Cubase: MIDI is better, Audio is better, CPU is the same (yes it is with ASIO GUARD (OSX!)


This is also one of the BIG features for pro film composers in Cubase - the wonderful Time Warp Tool:

(can’t live without that)

They still have this?! Well it always seemed more like a design problem than a bug, so I probably should’ve guessed it’s still there.

Another similar Logic quirk, which was extremely embarassing to me once, I discovered while delivering accidentally out of sync files to an album mixing session. See, Logic adds the PDC buffer’s worth of silence to the start of the export. Why it does that, I have no idea, but it does (or at least did ten years ago, I sure hope this has been fixed by now). Even though I set the locators exactly to where the reference Pro Tools track was at, the synths I had programmed to the piece were off exactly by the PDC buffer compared to the audio that came directly from PT. I remember testing this immediately with Cubase out of frustration, and sure enough, Cubase’s export lined up perfectly with the reference track…

Not to harp on Logic too much though. Along the years I’ve just come to the conclusion that these small paper cuts exist in some form in all DAWs. So what’s most important is that you know and your thinking lines up with your chosen program incredibly well, and thus you know how to navigate your way around any pitfalls.

But to bring this back to the original topic, there’s just no way to claim that Cubase isn’t up there in terms of scoring features. It’s clearly one of the best, and subjectively for many, the best. Some people and Steinberg themselves name-drop HZ with Cubase often and that’s obviously a great reference, but I think the true test of a DAW is how well those of us without large teams can work extremely efficiently and spend the least amount of time on tasks that have nothing to do with music. And I think again there Cubase absolutely shines.

Logic is great too in its own ways, so if some people are choosing it, go for it. I think, however, some of them might be checking out the views over here after a while!

The best DAW for the job is the one you know best.
But for scoring and film sound Cubase is the best solution.

BTW… Junkie XL (film composer and extreme sound designer) with his more than 3,000 track (!!) template.
Try this with Logic… (impossible)

How can you say Cubase is the best DAW when stuff like this happens:

I certainly wish Cubase didn’t failed drawing simple faders…

Cubase was easy to break. Changing buffer sizes changed where the automation happened! From 64 sample buffer to 1024 sample buffer changed it by about 588 samples, or 12 milliseconds!

That’s a lot!

That’s not all either. Notice that the fade changes as well. The shorter buffer size has a quick fade, and the longer buffer size has a longer fade. This is the exact same automation. I placed 2 points as close as possible to each other for a 0dB to -inf automation drop.

We’re out of the territory of different DAWs sounding different completely now. The same DAW can’t even sound the same!

I did not find any settings that alleviated this behaviour. Changing buffer sizes always changed automation.

Not everybody works with gazillion track templates and amazing scores are composed with almost every DAW on the market.

It’s incredible that you don’t understand what i mean…
it’s not about thousands of thousands mixer channels - it’s about all the pro features that you can found in Cubase’s Mix Console. None of that can be found in Logic’s rudimentary Mixer. Fact.
Have a look:

I have never said the opposite anywhere…

I am a former hardcore Logic X user. But Cubase is the better choice for film composing and sound design, feature wise.

But I like to repeat myself:
the best DAW for the job is the one you know best.

Thanks for that reference. Of the 20 differences, I knew about 5 that I use regularly. There were another 8 or 10 that I probably wouldn’t use. But there were 4 or 5 I had no idea, and I can really use them. The big gem in there for me is the combined panning feature. I have been using a Waves plug-in for that. It is sooooooo much easier to do it right in the mixer. There may be a few times I’ll still want to go to the Waves plug, but I’ll use this feature a lot.

If that’s important to you, do a real-time export. Admiral Bee can’t be expected to be familiar with all the DAWs he tests.

No I understand. I also prefer Cubase for scoring for media and love it but it feels like you are over bashing Logic. You can not even accept that someone can like it’s GUI which is a personal thing. It is a highly capable DAW used by professionals and amateurs everyday just like SO, DP, Live or FL Studio. In ‘‘your view’’ pattern sequencer and Clip based production is child stuff so you stamp Logic as being a toy which is far from the truth.

Also you are approaching film scoring from a single point of view. For that type of blockbuster scoring yes Cubase has advantages. Especially big budget composers who work 24/7 and prefer instant access to all sounds but as I said not everybody works that way or need extended mixer features or visibility agent or sound design, (which I think Logic is not behind at all, check Charlie Clouser’s scores) when composing.

Both are great DAWs missing features compared to each other. I can make a comparison list like yours in favor of Logic against Cubase in a second
but I do not know any kind of music or film score that can exclusively done by one DAW only.

I am a film composer who made that move, and jumped ship from Pro Tools back in 2015. Why did I choose Cubase and not Logic, for my fresh new start? Because, as much as I love Apple products, how certain could I be that they deeply care about Logic or its development? Apple makes money from selling iPhones. Logic would be an afterthought in the big scheme of things. But Steinberg? They make Cubase, and that is their main focus. Which company do I trust more to actually care about the software that would be depending on every day? There really was only one logical (!) choice.

After 5 years with Cubase Pro and now with version 10.5 I am happy happy. I see people complaining about a lack of new features – coming from Pro Tools, hearing that is almost comical. To me there has been more major improvements to Cubase the 5 years I’ve been using it, than the last 10 years of Pro Tools. And, as other people here point out, you can customise and mold the program to make it fit your needs. You don’t HAVE to dig into all of that stuff (I have only scratched the surface of Macros and PLE myself), but once you do, you start to see how incredibly advanced this piece of software is.

The only thing that I still find more intuitive in Pro Tools is its incredibly fast-paced audio editing (tabbing to transients, splitting, nudging, crossfading, all that ninja editing stuff). I miss that a bit. But not enough to pain myself with a two-DAW workflow when Cubase delivers so well on everything else.

YES! Dorico is incredible. It is a so much more clever program than Sibelius that it is mindboggling. I think Dorico is starting to make a real impression on composers, and we will see more people making the switch. I was completely sold from day one.

You’ve got to be kidding. This is nothing short of Steinberg’s premium software at it’s best.

Studio One 5 now includes notation and articulation functionality.

Just don’t ever use an “external instrument” with it or do anything but the most basic MIDI tasks.