What is the function of WL?

Is it just me :astonished: or are we seeing more and more niche requests for things to add to WL (like vinyl mastering machine controls, multi-track recording with mixers and pitch refinements) which IMHO have NOTHING to do with what WL does so well. It is a MASTERING software to be used for MASTERING and not for basic research or as a platform for adding something that only one person in the whole WL universe will use. There are a lot of good feature requests but I see more and more newbies asking for things that only they will use. Leave WL as a mastering platform and not as some bloated “Swiss army knife” of a program that can do everything but nothing well. There are so many programs for all these other tasks so converting WL in to an all in one program does, IMHO, not make sense. :exclamation:

It is a MASTERING software to be used for MASTERING and not for basic research

WaveLab is known for its mastering capabilities, but WaveLab is used in other fields, like broadcasting, archiving, gaming, sample editing, batch processing of any kind.


Hi Thomas,
I understand why you may have posted this. But in my opinion there’s no danger of the mastering part of WL becoming compromised in any way. In my opinion, mastering (only one part of the program) will most likely always be maintained to the highest standards. There’s also audio editing and WL began as an audio editor. As well as what PG mentions it’s also a great audio analysis and audio forensics tool and is excellent for creating sound effects. And don’t forget the spectral editing. It also has good integration with Cubase/Nuendo if you want to use it as an external editor.

I also understand Thomas’ sentiment, though I disagree that WL only is ‘mastering software to be used for mastering’. Since version 3 I’ve been using it as an audio editor and for radio work (creating promo’s, jingles, station calls, complete shows etcetera). Later on also started in the mastering field. Had I been a prolific sampler user (I use samplers but hardly ever create samples) WL would obviously be my go-to sample editor as well.

I think we can trust Philippe to put his resources towards the most used functions in the software. But all things audio also change and though I wouldn’t want WL to turn into a multitrack DAW either, I can understand mastering engineers using outboard equipment want to re-record their audio. Also if that audio is surround and therefor 5- or 7-channel. And with an increasing demand towards surround/ binaural sound for VR or AR applications, I’m sure new feature requests will keep coming…

I agree and have done a lot of radio production, restoration work, and audio lay back for video with WL. I guess what I don’t want to see is some bloated and over loaded program that does “EVERYTHING” but nothing really well. I guess I will, as I always have done, trust you to keep WL working well.

Keep up the GREAT work!


Have to side with the other here in that WL (for me) is the ultimate audio toolbox. I do a pile of things with it that have nothing to do with mastering at all.

That said - I do agree with your assessment on those that think turning WL into a vinyl studio or a multi-track recorder is a good idea. I already use many part of WL to generate world class vinyl transfer and repair - so that is not needed.

As far as a multi-track goes - there are many existing choices that would kick the crap of of WL in this realm - so that’s not even a topic.

Do note that a lot of these suggestions come from folks who probably have no idea what mastering is or maybe are just getting started in audio and think that WL is the be all and end all when it comes to audio (It’s not).

These kind of requests will continue to flood the forum as long as we are here. The key is making sure that PG keeps his focus and does not bloat the app - which I believe he will not.


Of course we do not want a bloated app, and I think PG has a great vision for WaveLab.

That being said, I know of a handful of mid and high level mastering engineers who wanted to try WaveLab but gave up for various reasons.

The number one reason is the limitations WaveLab has when it comes to using analog gear, routing the audio from one montage track, to one or more stereo converters, and recording back on a new track using one or more stereo A to D converters.

There are some work arounds and compromises that some are using but I think for WaveLab to attract some new users, this part of the app needs to be improved. This means adding some basic bussing/routing and other things that make this possible. For now, I do the analog play/capture in REAPER and reserve WaveLab for the final steps of mastering, or any projects that are all “in the box”.

I understand. But there are very few software programs out there that are as well suited for two track mastering as WL. At present I have Adobe Audition, Acon mastering software, Sound Forge, Reaper, Audacity, Vegas and Samplitude on my computer that I use for various purposes. NONE of them does all the things that WL does. The biggest problem with a lot of the software is it will not let me listen in real time I have to “audition it”. The other problem is a lot of software programs will not let me burn a CD. Both of which are critical to my needs. If WL needs other things to satisfy a vast number of users GREAT but if one or two people want PG to “modify or change” WL to suit their individual needs or their particular ways of working then I think it is a BAD idea and I am sure PG will not be doing that. The biggest request I see is for a multi-track recorder with an on screen mixer which for a mastering app is not needed. I guess some people want buy only one piece of software and have it do everything. In the end I guess it is all about saving money :unamused: .

As to use with analog equipment. I use pitch and catch and it works well for me :confused: . FWIW

Why so modest? My newest microphone outputs a 19-channel file (which I process into a 4-, 9-, or 16-channel file for further use), and I know of people using 25-, 32-, and 36-channel files (for productive work - research in the same field, Ambisonics, may go as far as 49- or 64-channel files at present).

As a matter of interest, the Ambisonic file sets are always a perfect square number of channels, the 19 comes from the 20 faces of an icosahedron which give a perfectly uniform distribution of microphones on a sphere (one is missing because that’s where the mounting is), and the 32 is another almost uniform distribution on a sphere.


Wow, interesting stuff! I wasn’t aware of this field much at all. But I hope you’re not suggesting to have up to 64 channels of mastering in WL… :wink:

Well, I could already edit 64-channel files in Adobe Audition or Sony^H Magix Sound Forge - if I had any.


i fail to see why it is controversial to expect support for analog gear. Why would that feature cause issues? Every other DAW has that ability. I’m sure PG knows that a good portion of WL users are mastering engineers and most of us need the analog support. We’re currently forced to use other options/workarounds. It’s not they would need to reinvent the wheel here. the lack of analog support is a major turn off for some potential users. I’m not suggesting a mixer screen and a bunch of channel strips…just refine the external gear support. The external plug option in is not useful. Just have a montage lane that you can record into while playing back from another lane that has the source audio.

Exactly. Bonus points for ability to send montage tracks to more than one stereo out, and capture in from more than one stereo input that is togglable (during playback for A/B compare).

I don’t really see anybody asking WaveLab to turn in to a multitrack DAW, just make it more functional for using analog gear. It will attract many new users, and long-time users like myself may no longer be forced/tempted to do that part of the process in another DAW (REAPER, Pro Tools, Cubase etc.).

I know so many mix engineers who are heavily Mac users, looking for a great mastering DAW on Mac for when they have to master their own stuff. WaveLab is the best/obvious choice but the way the analog insert works now is a big turn-off.

Just have a montage lane that you can record into while playing back from another lane that has the source audio.

Like a loopback audio track(s) out-1n freely routing, yes sounds useful indeed !

regards S-EH

In my opinion routing in the Montage will be improved in the next version of WL. And I’m sure this will be designed in a way that does not make WL into a multitrack DAW in the traditional sense of the term.