How to upgrade from Cubase AI 12 to Cubase 12 PRO?

Good morning
I bought a Cubase 12 PRO upgrade from 12 Elements. How to properly upgrade because when I enter the Access Code on my profile, an error appears. I’ve never done this before and I don’t know how to deal with it. Please help.

You must make sure you buy the exact upgrade you need, according to the license you own, which is displayed in the Steinberg Activation Manager.

Is it Cubase AI, Cubase LE, or Cubase Elements?

I show a screenshot of my Cubase and also a picture of upgrade. I must have bought the wrong version :frowning:

Not that…


I thought AI was the same as Elements because I was told so, but I can see that I bought and unpacked the wrong thing. I can’t even replace it with the right version anymore :frowning: but maybe there’s still a chance?

The dealer should give you a refund since you did not use the activation code.

I have another idea. A good friend bought a Steinberg interface and got an AI license plus an upgrade to PRO. He would be satisfied with the version I have Elements Is it possible to somehow transfer licenses from one of my accounts and vice versa? So what exactly is the difference between AI and Elements? The price of upgrading from these versions to PRO is the same after all. Am I wrong ?
I will add that my colleague has not registered either the interface or Cubase yet

The question is did he use the DAC or Activation already. There’s no “registration” per se

the differences

Ok I see. What if I have Elements and want to sell it? I would buy AI and after the trouble. There is no conversation with the seller because he claims it’s my fault and he’s actually a bit right because I thought that AI and Elements are the same, even more so in the photo I posted earlier it says LE AI Elements. Now I know it’s something else.

A colleague has not registered either the interface or Cubase AI yet. In my case it was like buying an audient interface. I had to register the interface and then I registered Cubase but I got LE and then I bought Elements but it wasn’t an upgrade.

To be clear regarding lexicon, Steinberg uses the term Activation. “register” is used in a different sense. If you have activated a license it appears in the Steinberg Activation Manager. If you have not, you still have either a Download Access Code or Activation Code that is unused.

For the rest, at this point, please figure it out. You have all the info you need.

Hi @studio.talent,

please note that there are currently five versions of Cubase 12:

  • Pro → retail → Installer = Pro / Artist (+ VST instr., content selection)
  • Artist → retail → Installer = Pro / Artist (+ VST instr., content selection)
  • Elements → retail → Installer = LE AI Elements (+ VST instr., content selection)
  • AI → no retail / hardware bundle → Installer = LE AI Elements (+ content selection)
  • LE → no retail / hardware bundle → Installer = LE AI Elements (+ content selection)

This means that you cannot buy both versions AI or LE as retail licenses, but only in combination with a new audio interface (or sometimes a MIDI controller, a mixer, etc., depending on the respective manufacturer).

All 3 minor versions use the same software installer, yet they come with slightly different amounts of added content and have different capabilites, hence the three different product names.

So, apart from the possibility to buy again or sell a surplus license and then get AI from someone who still hasn’t used up its download access code, there is only one more way:

→ scan your proof of purchase and phone the Steinberg support/ support partner within your region - and ask them if they can perhaps do something for you only out of goodwill. No guarantee, but you should try it.

This is what needs to be fully understood:
the correct technical license upgrade / update path is essential. Things may indeed look a bit confusing if someone is rather new to the whole Steinberg software product environment.