Homebase for Sonar users

I’d definitely take Pro over Artist. You’d be downgrading from Sonar Platinum if you didn’t. I learned the hard way that if I have a full feature set that I don’t use, I’m better off than having a more limited feature set that I wish could do more.

Plugin stuff.

TTS-1/Hyper Canvas is based on the Roland SC-88Pro Sound Canvas sound set from 1996. Halion Sonic SE should replace this really well.

Halion Sonic SE uses a mix of select instruments from the following sources:

Yamaha MU-100 (1997, General MIDI soundset)
Motif Classic (2001, all of the sounds are included in Cubase Pro)
Motif XS (2007)
Motif XF (2010, Cubase Pro only)

I think most of the instruments in Halion Sonic SE sound a lot better than their TTS-1 counterparts. The only weak points to me are the chromatic percussion and the oboe.

Sonitus FX

These are really old (from around 1999?). Cubase’s stock plugins don’t have all of their features in some cases, but they should sound better.

Dropzone and RXP

The Sampler Track and Groove Agent SE 4 are definitely a lot better.

Adaptive Limiter

Cubase’s new Maximizer can emulate the Adaptive Limiter’s different modes by using the Recovery and Mix knobs. The freeware Limiter No.6 is also worth taking a look at and may work better on some material.

Nomad Factory plugins

The Blue Tubes series is quite infamous, and a lot of people hate them with a passion. The dynamics processors in particular don’t really sound anything like vintage hardware.

For the easy color/warmth that these plugins were supposed to provide, you can use either Magneto or Quadrafuzz v2 in single band mode (“SB”). And of course there’s also the Tube Compressor. All of these plugins give you much more control over the saturation/distortion than Blue Tubes.

Ya I’m not losing any sleep over the lost plugins, just trying to help give people a list of what doesn’t work (I have Cubase 9.5 and Sonar Platinum, I just switched over). Realistically people will have no issue.

Adaptive Limiter is really the main one people might miss because it is a very nice transparent limiter with a good interface. Surprisingly good for an included plugin. We Platinum owners were quite pleasantly surprised when it got released as something of that caliber is often going to be an extra charge.

I doubt many will care about TTS-1, the only reason someone might is that stuff from the GM days was far more often than not composed for a SoundCanvas and thus the balance and timbre Roland chose sounds right. That said, TTS-1 is not the most competent implementation of that and if it really matters, one would probably get SoundCanvas VA which is a bang on accurate implementation.

I think most Platinum owners probably own at least a few 3rd party plugins, and probably more than a few, so between that, the plugins that do carry over, and all the stuff Cubase comes with, I doubt anyone is going to be in a hard place.

For me Soundcanvas VA is like roland at its best. And i looked at sonar but still ok with Cubase 95 and how its running with Groove Agent 4 and Halion. Though i sample everything to them. I use synths to fill them. Cubase and Wavelab are still the toys to do so.

Although the post hasn’t been approved yet, I asked this in another thread. I’ll ask here as this thread seems more appropriate.

  1. Is there anything in Cubase that replicates Sonar’s Big Time?
  2. Is there anything in Cubase that replicates Sonar’s Navigator view?

Hi. I would try to multi-select the midi objects then press enter to open them at once. Not the same at all but that gets the closest. Then there is a button at top of the midi editor editor to select which midi track you are active on (roughly top middle).
But the main determining factor depends on how your midi parts are organized in the arranger.
I would also advise to turn of the preference setting
Prefs-Editors-Open Editor commands open Editors in a Window (this isn’t the default). Using the ‘Lower Zone’ editor (the default) too small for big midi editing.
Hopefully that is roughly helpful.

No. All selected midi parts are visible in Score Edit view, without limitation. You would use the transport controls to navigate. That person must have been misinformed.

Thanks Ed, it was a good idea to provide this sub-forum. As someone who made the Sonar-to-Cubase transition in April 2016 and is very happy with Cubase I offer the following observations:

  • The Cubase interface is close enough to Sonar to feel familiar, however there are enough differences that one needs to make a commitment of time, say 2 to 7 days, of intense learning depending on how deep you need to go.

  • The Steinberg and third party Cubase learning videos on YouTube are fantastic.

  • There are two different instruction manuals for Cubase: on-line and PDF. Neither seems as useful as the Sonar instructions so consider using the videos first but be ready to slog through the manuals for the details.

  • The Cubase forum is VERY DIFFERENT to the Sonar Forum. The Cubase forum is very useful but it is not a chatroom. People tend to “get in get out”. There doesn’t seem to be the same level of personal discussion or jokes, and there is no competition for who has used Cubase longer :wink: but there are plenty of other users who are willing to help so it is a very good forum.

Greetings all! I’ve moved into Cubase and am coming up to speed. I’m sure I’ll be asking questions. Generally speaking I get how things work But clearly things are differently located or implemented in Cubase than Sonar. I like what I’m experiencing in this unplanned transition.

Hi all - as a Sonar user I am glad to find this thread. Just popping in as an introduction.

I had an eLicenser USB stick laying around idle from a previous Arturia purchase, and it is working nicely with the Cubase 9.5 demo.
I’m getting more familiar with the application every day, there are certainly many features in it!

I had some exposure to remote collaboration with the Rocket Network and am looking forward to working with VST Connect once I get up to speed with the DAW.


I am trying the evaluation version of Cubase Pro 9.5 and will probably end up buying it. It has a number of features that I like that Sonar doesn’t have. I have been studying the manual and watching video tutorials which helps a lot. I also downloaded the sample project and have been playing around with it. One thing I noticed about it was that it starts with measure -1. So far I can’t find mention of this feature anywhere in the manual or the videos I have watched. I was wondering if someone could tell me how to set this up in my own projects.


Select Project -> Project Setup, you can then set a custom Bar Offset.

If you want it to start at -1, set the Bar Offset to 2.

Hi to you all.
I am here too and I am using cubase since 1 week and I am quite happy with it.

But, there is one problem that I have during a recording session:

while recording into an audio track the audio material already recorded in the same track in the previous bars becomes muted.
I know that I could simply record using a new track, but this is not so handy (in particular if I record with 2 or 3 mics…, and having 2 or 3 tracks to record)…

Is there a way to let cubase play the track that I am recording?

Thank you,


There are a couple of tricky points here. They are both awesome and confusing.
I believe by default the control room is enabled. The control room is a prebuilt monitoring buss. If you hit F4 and go to the control room tab, you will see where the control room is routed … it should be routed to your main outs. The thing to keep in mind is that what you do in the control room is NOT rendered. It does not over-ride the main out. You can add all kinds of monitoring busses to the control room from the tab.

There are several control room views. The easiest one to get to is the right hand panel CR tab. The main monitor is always available and is where you can control metronome level. You can control the metronome level for each monitor channel you create (i.e. headhpone feeds). The control room is worthwhile to investigate.

I embed a lot of information in my Standard MIDI Files such as Title, Date of composition, Copyright info, original artist info, etc… I am wondering exactly how to accomplish this in Cubase. I see something like a SysEx Editor that exposes some of these but wondered if there was an easier way to do this.

File->Export->MIDI File will pop up a dialog. Unfortunately it doesn’t have all of the metadata you might want. To the best of my knowledge you have use a utility to edit the metadata once exported.

My SMF Library files have a melody and lyrics always on TRACK 4 (per the GM standard). I have been having a very hard time trying to understand how to work with lyrics and melody track in Cubase using the SCORE EDITOR. SONAR had a dedicated LYRICS window that was linked to a selected track. When I copy and paste the lyrics into the SCORE EDITOR I get very mixed results. Sometimes only partial lyrics are placed and some are in the wrong positions.

I can’t help here since I don’t use the score editor often, but I’m pretty sure there is no dedicated lyrics track.

I am getting more comfortable with this and have sort of tried working on a color scheme that matches my SONR layout to feel somewhat familiar. SONAR gave us a lot of detailed options for color customizations. This is limited somewhat in Cubase by only allowing a base HUE setting in the 9.5 COLOR SCHEMES settings that lock you into a certain range of colors.

There is a custom color tab that gets around this. It’s hard to explain but there is a root color (hue) box. Set that. Then go to the section you want that color for … such as the cycle colors. Set one color based on the root hue. Notice the color gets labeled “custom”. Once that happens you can go reset the base hue and set another color. It won’t mess with the ones labeled “custom”

Should default to F11 … if not go to Studio->More Options->Time Display

  1. Is there anything in Cubase that replicates Sonar’s Navigator view?

Upper right on the control bar is a set of widgets to show/hide panes. You want the Overview turned on. There’s hotkeys for each of these panels as well.

Thank you very much!

I plan to call Sweetwater today and buy the software.

Thanks much. Looking forward to digging in to this.

I turned on the overview. Is there any way to float it? I usually keep that on the bottom of a second monitor?

I‘m pretty sure you can‘t change the position.

Just wanted to add that control room is where you’d most likely want to put any RC software ( Sonarworks, ARC) It doesn’t get rendered so no need to remember to turn it off. Control room ( along with it’s metering) is a great feature & one reason I switched to Cubase from Sonar a few years ago.