Steinberg/Dorico compared to others

-10 years Cubase.
-2 years Dorico.
I formated my , PC last week.
Reinstalled all my music programs.
Dorico took more than an hour,between updates, downloads and confiramtion e-mails (the beatuy of e-licenser).

Guitar Pro 7.5 (absolutely the best for guitar players, classic al or Rock), and Overture 5 (very nice).
Downloading and re-installing the last 2, aproximately 1 minute each!

Cubase won´t work anymore, I submitted a ticket to Steinberg, so far only a kind response asking me for patience.

My advice to Steinberg: connect with the people at Guitar Pro and Overture, and ask them for some lessons on customer satisfaction.

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You can download the latest version of Dorico and the eLCC directly from Steinberg’s website, so why would you need to download updates?

A quick check of internet forums shows that Overture/Encore and ‘customer satisfaction’ are not close bedfellows.

What was the purpose of wiping your PC, just to put everything back?

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Guess u didn´t read my message properly. Dorico is already installed, like I mentioned took about 1 hour.
Overture can be buggy, but it wastes me much less time than Dorico .
And like I said, Guitar Pro beats them all, including Sibelius and Finale. Obviously for Guitar players.
But Steinberg refuses to admit it is simply a nightmare when it comes to installation.

I think Ben’s point is that it shouldn’t have taken an hour including updates, because you shouldn’t have needed to install updates. Why didn’t you download the latest version directly?

@Concha, your opinion about the way Steinberg’s products are installed and authorized are well-known to all of us now.

You won’t find anybody at Steinberg who believes that the current software installation and activation process is ideal. We are working hard to continuously improve it. The project to replace the eLicenser system with a new license management system is ongoing, and is indeed the company’s top overall priority at the moment.

The team who are working on Steinberg Download Assistant are also delivering improvements to that tool as quickly as possible. A forthcoming release will make it much easier to download and install your products because it will show you a list of products that are registered in your MySteinberg account, and we are moving products towards the ability to simply hit a single “Install” button at the top of the Steinberg Download Assistant window to download and install all required applications and content with a single click. (Cubase 11 already works this way, and the next version of Dorico will work this way.)

With respect to Guitar Pro and Overture, those products are both considerably smaller in scope and provide much less sound content etc. than either Cubase or Dorico, and because those companies don’t make many (or any) other products they are very probably spared the complications of trying to make sure that we don’t require our customers – who may have several of our products installed – to repeatedly download and install components or content that they already have installed.

I know from your repeated posts on this subject that you have very little patience with us as we work to improve these things, so I know you will not like to hear it, but if you can have some more patience you will find that our products become progressively easier to download, install and activate. It is a high priority for us as a business.


The point is that the installation it is not simple, and it is not user friendly.
The other softwares I mentioned are the opposite.
Before installing Dorico I had to carefully go through several you tube videos, and still it was complex.

And the point is after more than 1 week, my Cubase is simply dead, still waiting for help.
Look, I reall don´t want to be nasty, actually both programs are fantastic, if I were Steinberg I would pay more attention to customer´s complaints. I own a small company, the market rules. If I don´t listen to my customers I will be soon history.

But… he just told you that he’s listening to your complaints, and acting on them. The head of development. Personally…


Your experience perhaps. Mine was very different. I transferred Dorico to a new PC in about 15 mins and it was up and running (with just one detour round the licensing system, which was my mistake).

Complaining about Cubase here is like ranting about your Porsche on a Lamborghini forum.


I know, and I gave him a thumbs up for that.

Not really, same Steinberg same Licensing systems, I use both programs parallel, when they work together, which they hardly do, even after buying the Steinberg UR2 specifically for that.
Look people, It is all about constructive criticism.The best answer I got was from Daniel, as usual.
It is just way too frustrating, cause the programs are really nice.
I actually promissed myself not to post any more on the subject.But I was simply amazed by the difference of installing 4 different softwares.
Like I said, it took me 1 hour for Dorico (believe me I am not a PC newby), Cubase is still not working, the other 2, a couple of minutes each. Guess people love Dorico so much they don´t like their baby being bashed so hard. Honestly, I love it too.
Enough is enough, I will take Daniel´s word that things will improve.
You all stay happy and healthy.

FWIW, my experience has been very different too. I built a new PC in July, formatted a new hard drive, and reinstalled everything. The Dorico installation was pretty quick and seamless but I am using the dang dongle. As much as I hate needing a dongle, I need it for VSL stuff too so :man_shrugging: I assume everything will get even easier when the new licensing system is unveiled.


I also have a small development group Concha, as such I know how difficult it is to develop software so cut other developers a lot of slack, as I wish people would cut us! Those who live in glass houses …

At any rate, like FredGunn and others, and given my small group, over the last two years for me and my sound engineers computers we’ve set up, well five computers, PC and Macs, with Nuendo, Dorico and Wavelab (actually more than that because we tried some other computers but abandoned them). And managed multiple copies of licenses across the two of us - 2 ea of Nuendo and Wavelab, and one of Dorico. Haven’t had a problem to speak of. Looking forward to the new system so we can get rid of the dongles, hoping for centralized license management and we can have some multi use (laptop/desktop).

But anyhow I’ve seen license systems much worse. It’s not as bad as people make out, and certainly not worth bursting a blood vessel over.

Have had similar issues with the others as well.

Nearly all of them require installing some sort of licensing and management software these days.

I’m looking at eLicenser, iLok, some weird Waves licenser thing that triggers anti-virus all the time, AVID something is also in the system tray for Sibelius. I have to drag some kind of image in ARIA. Finale also tracks my machine and if anything changes (system drive id, cpu, motherboard chip-set, etc.) it too requires some steps to get the system up and running, that at times might ALSO require contacting various software companies to have old keys released.

Last time I changed something major in the system, I’d forgotten to release a bunch of keys first. I had to contact at least 4 tech support teams to get all the keys released, for multiple products (things not DAW related as well). Since I keep my Stienberg stuff on dongles, that’s the ONE company I didn’t have to jump through any hoops to get up and running again.

The dongleware stuff are actually the only ones I can sysprep an entire system drive with the DAWs and instruments preinstalled, and just plug the drive and dongles into multiple systems and have it work right away.

I’m told the dongle will still be an option in the future. I hope so, because I like to clone the whole system drive as part of the project backup process. This way, next time I need it, it’s all exactly where it was when I last touched it. All I need do is have an OS license that allows moving from machine to machine like this, and make sure the right system drivers for the thing I’ll be plugging the drive into are in the driverstore. I don’t have to go muck about in 18 different web sites to get keys active again. Cloud/disk registrations do not allow this!

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Concha, if you run your own company, you will probably know, how one has to take care of little details as well and in special. I just mention this, as I noticed, that all other posters in this thread manage to use the right typographical apostrophe ’ while you use the accent ´ which is reserved for another function. If you are typing on a windows machine (which I guess after having read your first thread) try the key combination ALT-0146

No, in the new Steinberg identity-based license management system, you will no longer be able to use your USB-eLicenser, at least with new products. (Obviously existing licenses already on the USB-eLicenser will continue to work indefinitely.)

Hi, when this new license management system will be available? Thanks in advance!

We haven’t made any announcements about when precisely the new system will be available, but you can be sure we will make an announcement as soon as we have something specific to share.

This is good news for individuals, but it’s discouraging that dongles are no longer an option to keep our keys. Is that for the entire lineup, or just Dorico?

One of Stienberg’s biggest selling points among pros, was that upgrading could be done offline. Sound booths did not require networking infrastructure and internet access. System backs ups, hardware changes, etc…never was a major problem. We change system drives often, for a lot of important reasons!

A hand full of dongles is far more cost effective than a hand full of networking cards, routers, special bank accounts and contracts, all sorts of information going to the ‘cloud’, etc, etc, etc.

Other than plugging in the dongle and verifying/updating that thing, and getting the installers, it could become a highly portable offline solution. I could only run copy at a time per dongle/key, but it didn’t matter what I chose to run it on!

I fear this will push a lot of institutions out of using software/PC/Mac based options (small churches for instance), and more towards stand alone gear (No more Cubase, but instead something like an all-in-one PSR workstation synced up to something like a BOSS stand alone digital recording console).

Contracts and network infrastructure to keep things running and up to date can be a tough sell in the land of bureaucracies and grant writers. If you can buy a console that records for $1,200, install it, and be done with it for a decade, VS 3k worth of ‘stuff’, and scads of implementation red-tape that has to go through 18 different committees/departments to run network infrastructure to a control room or lab, plus having someone sysop all the mess, plus needing a carrier and all the contracts that go with that, plus having a committee agree to set up special ‘accounts’ for regular billing, manage all the passwords, plus pay $600 for the software, and another $1,000+ bundle for a computer.

Losing the ability to easily drive swap and boot among different systems…will be a hard hit for me :frowning:

Now I understand that anytime I want to use Cubase on different hardware, I’ll have to log in, free keys, find internet access on the next system, log in, register, a bunch of stuff about my system is exchanged and stored on the cloud, etc. Is this correct?

What a nightmare! At least compared to…plug in drive, plug in dongle, boot twice, make one phone call to a robot at Microsoft, punch in one code, done.

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Why should you want to change your hardware so often? My impression is: in realistic scenarios this happens only once every few years.

Realistic scenario:

One drive, clean install of everything at latest version. Clone it, put one copy away. These are where I begin every project. A nice clean system drive with everything required.

When I get a client, I remove the stuff he doesn’t have licenses for, or doesn’t want to buy, and keep my work within’ those boundaries unless he wants to buy it too.

Work on the project until done or need to do something for a different client.

Clone it again to a less expensive backup media. Pull the drives. Box them.

If project is done, get client to run a system report that tells me what drivers they need. I check that what he needs are in the driver store. Deliver his drive and the backup. He plugs in his dongle(s) and his drive, registers the OS as ‘the copy’ he is entitled to use on that machine. Picks up where I left off, only needing to reassign some things for whatever audio/midi devices are different from mine, otherwise, same versions, etc.

Client also has the ‘option’ of importing the project from that drive to his current set-up if he’d rather, but if he makes that choice, he’s on his own. I can help if he calls to some degree, but there are far more limits on what I can do for him from there if he has ‘issues’ or wants more help. If he goes off my full system copy, he can call me on the phone or whatever, and we’re both looking at the same (or very close) stuff!

Meanwhile, I’m off working on different projects on different drives.

Say it’s one of my own projects…not for a client. Even so, it’s nice to be able to just plug in a drive and a dongle, be it tomorrow, or 6 years from now, and pick up exactly where I left off. All I need is a machine that is supported by the OS and make sure the driver store has the right drivers to get it working.

Then there’s the whole backup-system concept. Can maintain more than one, and swapping only requires moving a dongle.

Other deployment situations I won’t go into here. Never mind unions, tech-writer requirements, and other red tape. I’ll just say a short version. It’s really nice when you can call ahead and they say, “Oh, you don’t need to bring that 12 rack crate with you. Just send us your drive prepped by these specs, by X time/date, our security people will check it out, and unless we call back and report a problem…when you get here, the console and everything connected to it will be ready to go for you! It’ll be pretty much exactly like it was when you left off! You won’t have clutter installed, you’ll know where all the files live, etc.”

In a university lab…each student can have their own drive. Pull it and go. Come back to the lab later, plug into a different machine (same or similar build), it works. Will that still work with the new system? If so, do all the machines have to be online every time a student sits down and plugs in a different drive?

While its true that ‘office software’, and maybe even Scoring software has small enough files that don’t need a lot of streaming power. They could realistically run from virtual machines served up, student files kept on a cloud or LAN, etc. For big multi-media projects…no way, that 1,200 track project, with all the A/V streams and such is going run from the cloud…probably not from a LAN either (if it does, it’ll be one hell of a ‘very expensive’ LAN). So…each student gets a drive…that’s their baby. They share workstations and other hardware by simply plugging it in and booting a couple times (and base dongles are locked in the case). Since these workstations aren’t online, aren’t using a continuous NAS or anything…student can also put their ‘own junk’ on their ‘baby drive’ and bring their own dongles for that stuff if necessary. They don’t have to jump through a million and seven sysop hoops to do so. If one student screws up, it’s just his or her drive…not the whole bloody department’s problem.

Under a ‘cloud based’ system, as I understand them, this will no longer be the case.

  1. Will have to free up the keys before pulling the drives. That means the original DAW has to be online, exposed to the world pretty much all the time. Or at least a few times a week. (ransomware hacks are becoming more common in music studios! The exploits get in from drop boxes, people using the machines to browse the web, etc. Sometimes from plugging in bad/unchecked devices with boot sectors onboard…should always check bootable media and stuff on a fire-walled or throw away system before inserting it into the studio workflow, but most often, the ransomware hacks come from…THE INTERNET)

  2. Target system will have to go online, log into accounts, download and install the ‘latest’ version of whatever does the licensing, register stuff, etc, etc, etc.

Several extra steps, requiring networking hardware, internet access, and accounts. Less freedom. More information exchanged over the cloud. Now also REQUIRES a network card of some sort in the target machine (and those being enabled are notoriously bad for a DAW unless specially selected and tuned…poor drivers lead to wait-states and such can wreak havoc on latency, thread management, and more).

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