organising cubase projects


Cubase seems designed to confuse new users about how to organize projects. If cubase directed the workflow towards the only sensible way to organize projects, new users wouldn’t be mystified. And it would be more efficient for experienced users. Some days I wonder if Cubase developers have ever used Cubase.

Most developers don’t use the software they create. If you like play video games, don’t become a video game developer. There’s no time to play, you are making the games for other people to play.

That would be unusual in this business. I use my software every day. Most audio software developers do.

True, and true.

I will also say, in my experience, that’s an important factor in the quality of audio software. My comment about Cubase developers was not meant to be glib or impertinent.

Pardon me if I come across as insulting or degrading here, I try not to. But bare with me for a second…

You literally just described the problem and that you love it. It’s like you’re saying you prefer to open the trunk of the car and climb in and over the seats to the front seat to start your car, rather than just walk up to the driver’s door and getting in.

Maybe we have some disconnect also because you are on a PC and Im on a Mac, but allow me to illustrate


  1. Create Empty Project or Select a Template.

  2. Select the root destination (desktop or write drive),

  3. ‘Ctrl+Shift+N’ creates a new folder with the name ready to be typed.

  4. Type name ‘Artist - Song’,

  5. ‘ctrl+a’ copy to clipboard ‘ctrl+c’,

  6. hit ‘Enter’ hit ‘Tab’ twice,

  7. hit ‘Enter’ again. You’re in the project

  8. Ctrl+s to save.

  9. paste the folder name you copied. press enter.


1.) Create Empty Project or Template

2.) Click Save

3.) choose destination

4.) type name (once).

You now have a folder with folder hierarchy organized in your desired location.

But if you use the .bak files regularly, there is something wrong with your process. These are emergency back up files in case your computer crashes and you didn’t save. They can also be handy if you didn’t do a “Save As” on a session that went in a different direction that you wanted to revisit. We all love back up files. But if I have to dig through 15-20 .bak files for every project/session I work on, there is something wrong with my work flow. However, the once or twice every few months you need a .bak up file, it’s not far if its just in its own dedicated folder in the Project folder.

And if you have to use the Search function for .cpr to find your session, I would seriously look at your organizing and fold hierarchy. I guarantee you, if I have a cue that says 1M2, you’ll be looking for ages and opening up the wrong project ten times before finding the right one. To each their own of course, maybe you’ve grown accustomed to opening up projects via search function. But to me that seems like a recipe for disaster if you cannot find your session files faster but knowing where they are or already working from your Project folder.

Again, I mean no disrespect to your work flow or preferences, I highly appreciate your input with me here. It is very interesting to me that you desire the problem that I have found to be redundant and time/effort wasting.

I said:
This could maybe be cleaned up a bit, but I can still do this in three seconds.
but was giving you the quickest way of doing it to a point that it becomes a none issue.

in regards to .baks, I barely use them at all because I ‘Save New Version’ religiously between doing additional ‘Save As…’ and describing what has changes in the project since the last time I ‘Saved’ As.

Artist - Song - 07-24-2019
Artist - Song - 07-24-2019-01
Artist - Song - 07-24-2019-02
Artist - Song - 07-24-2019-03
Artist - Song - 07-24-2019-03 - BassGtrEditing
Artist - Song - 07-24-2019-03 - BassGtrEditing-01
Artist - Song - 07-24-2019-03 - BassGtrEditing-02
Artist - Song - 07-24-2019-04 - BassGtrFX
Artist - Song - 07-24-2019-04 - BassGtrFX-01

and so on, I have hundreds on .cprs mixed with .baks and that’s how I like it.

Never a problem finding anything. I either mouse scroll to the very bottom of the project folder an find the latest save, or just search it.

When I use finder on the Mac to find a project in a folder, I simply sort the folder contents by date, latest at the top. Then I can easily see what’s what. There is absolutely no problem for me with .bak files.

You both have your valid methods of finding your sessions and scrolling through back up files to find your file. I simply want to use the fastest, most efficient, least click/scroll method that I know that other DAWs utilize.

Im trying to use Cubase for work, but its just a couple steps more complicated than it has to be.

Im not here to be a Cubase hater…instead, consider me a deflector from the enemy side giving you useful information: Cubase file management is a mess, can be cleaned up for users who go through 40-50 sessions pr month. Typing in a search and sorting by date, or scrolling though ten’s of back up files to find the one session file are not conducive to efficient, focused work flow.

Im already having a stroke reading this.

It has saved me many times, it also allows all sorts of creative opportunities, archiving projects at different stages, blending old parts of project with new parts, etc, etc. Very handy and perfect the way it is.

Then when I want a clean slate, I do a back up project, which instead of a backup, is the continuation of the project but without unneeded audio files and cleans up the project folder. When the project is finished, I do one last “Back up project” as an archive, and then I have many previous stages of the project I can bring into archive - for instance the original raw recording, or an experimenting stage of the project, etc, etc. From this archive I then also obtain any samples I can and create a sample pack based off that project that I can use in future ones.

exponential efficiency brah, and nothing is ever lost. Save New Versions are essentially my manual .baks, and the .baks are there for if by chance there’s a crash between ‘Save New Version’, pretty much if I EQ something I ‘Save New Version’. It’s not that much files space.

I never have trouble finding anything

pretty much instead of 'save’I ‘save new version’ except for very small changes, or initial quick sculpting of things, I save over whatever version I’m on.

Exactly! Use “Save As”, “save new project”, “Back Up Project” are all very useful and great methods to keeping order in your files and your mind at ease. .Bak files are great for emergencies and useful too, don’t want to be without them, but they should be in their own dedicated folder (see pic)

if they are in their own dedicated folder, you can’t organize them with your saves based on time/date. thats how I view my project folders, organized by time/date. Sometimes a .bak ends up being the latest version before a crash happened.

Of course you can. It doesn’t change how you sort your files. At least on a Mac. (See pic - its now sorted by date)

I don’t have a preference as to where the backups should go, but I have a question regarding the creating/saving process in logic. Does the “cpr” file automatically get the name of the folder? Is this what we are talking about? I tried to follow the events needed for a project earlier, but to me the Cubase way does not seem as convoluted as described?
Here is how I (think) I do it:
1 Create new project (from template or whatever)
2 Choose location for project, click new folder and type in the name of the song (assuming I have made the Artist folder already).
3 Ctrl+s type in song name, hit enter.
4 Start recording.

Now, reading this thread again, the only thing I can think of that would make my life a bit easier would be if ctrl+s just assumed I wanted to name the project same as the folder.
Oh, and one more thing: if you when choosing “save as” and made a new folder (somewhere completely different) Cubase would ask you if you wanted to move and/or the project to this location. That would really help me, like when recording a band and they ton’t know what their songs should be called, I could just have a “START” folder where work always started, and then when saving as I could choose the actual location and everything would follow.

No, the .cpr file does not get named automatically the same as the folder. That’s part of the problem.

It’s just redundant to have to create TWO locations and TWO names for one project:

  1. Open Project location
  2. Name the folder
  3. Select where to Save the project
  4. Name project again

Here is a video that illustrates the 5+ clicks and two naming steps you have to go through, as opposed to less clicks, faster load and one naming step that just creates the same type of project folder. (Notice in the video how much longer it takes to load Cubase)

Yeah I know how it works in cubase, I was asking about logicx:)

Even this way, you don’t see the .baks next to the .cprs by order of date/time.

You said yourself, you just need to see the last created .bak file. Then why do you need to see the .cpr file next to it?

You also said it’s rare you have to go back and find a .bak file because you already “Save As”, “Save New”…

The few amount of times we (and you) go through the back up files don’t equate the necessity to have a clear view of our session folder every day.