Every February, a group of folks who can be described as ambitious, crazy, or some combination of the two undertake a challenge that few of us have ever considered. The challenge itself, at least in description, is simple. In twenty-eight days, or twenty-nine in this case, an album must be written and recorded in its entirety. Pre-existing material is not considered eligible, nor are covers. Yet despite this seemingly insurmountable workload, this challenge grows in participation by the year.
The challenge in question is known as the RPM Challenge. Created by the New Hampshire alternative newspaper The Wire in 2006, the RPM Challenge has proven year after year to be an irresistible hurdle for an ever-growing number of songwriters. After giving them some time to rest, we spoke with some SONAR users who participated in the 2016 edition of the challenge to get their take on the experience.
Matt O’Grady participated with his project, The Wasted Miracles. Citing an immense amount of support from the RPM community via their forums and blogs, Matt has actually participated in multiple RPM Challenges. He finds the process to be exhausting (fair enough) but also incredibly rewarding. “Even the years in which I haven’t completed the challenge, I’ve walked away with one or two more songs than I normally would have,” he added.
Gary Fox also took part, and as someone who thrives under pressure he particularly enjoyed the tail end of the process. “I enjoy the marathon recording sessions of the very end. This tends be when the random moments of inspiration happen, where an idea for a part of song just kind of occurs that make the entire song,” he said, adding that after conferring with fellow RPM participants that this is a common experience. Continue reading Completing the RPM Challenge with SONAR
With thousands of features, workflows, and settings, even the most hardcore user can miss out on something awesome buried in SONAR. It happens to the best of us. So we’ve put together 5 quick and easy features that can improve your workflow as well as your creativity with Virtual Instruments and Synths. Check out the video here:
Explore SONAR X2’s Skylight User Interface
SONAR X2 takes its award winning Skylight interface to a new level. Learn the basics of Skylight and get up and running quickly with a brand-new CakeTV video series. The first four videos in the series show Skylight’s fundamental features including – workflow with audio and MIDI clips, zooming and navigation, Screensets, and customizing Skylight’s versatile workspace. Watch them now on CakeTV.
Get Started: Skylight
Learn how to arrange Skylight’s workspace in SONAR X2, from docking windows in the MultiDock to rearranging the positions of the Inspector, Browser, and much more.
Get Started: Screensets
Learn how to use SONAR X2’s Screensets, which are ‘presets’ that remember the position, size, and state of every window, plugin, and synth.
Get Started: Zoom & Navigation
Learn how the various ways to zoom and navigate in SONAR X2 like Timeline Zoom.
Get Started: Audio & MIDI Clips
Learn how to work with SONAR X2’s clips, from applying fades, creating Groove Clips, time-stretching, and much more.
SONAR X1 brings a lot of significant changes from previous versions of SONAR; changes like the Unified Preferences View, ProChannel, Enhanced Automation, Key Clusters, the Skylight User Interface, and so much more. All of these changes are designed to enhance workflow, which means you can get more done in less time with SONAR X1.
The video below demonstrates SONAR X1’s enhancements versus previous versions, and I suspect most of them could apply to SONAR X1 versus other DAWs, as well.
More and more people are adopting SONAR as their digital audio workstation of choice. To make the transition easier, we’ve enhanced SONAR’s Key Bindings feature with presets to allow users of other programs such as Pro Tools, Logic, Cubase, Nuendo and/or Acid to use the keyboard shortcuts that they have already commited to memory. Check out this tip by DJ Serg and start working with key bindings today.
Chris Maguire, record producer and owner of Altsounds.com, recently re-wired his studio to run SONAR 8 Producer. After using SONAR to record various session work, Maguire published an extensive review of the new upgrade, giving major props to the DAW’s versatility and sound quality.
“SONAR 8 Producer is intuitive and makes complete sense straight out of the box but is MUCH deeper than meets the eye and holds gems for users as their skills progress.”
“There is so much packed into SONAR 8 in fact that even a seasoned user such as myself never really touches the surface of what it can do…”
“LP-64 Multiband – Excellent Multiband Compressor that will allow even novices to get mastered mixes at levels expected.”
“TL-64 Tube Leveler – Awesome for adding Tube Warmth to your mixes or two individual entities in a mix.”
Macguire also compliments SONAR’s new workflow enhancements including the improved transport controls, the audio engine optimizations (arm/disarm tracks, ability to change audio settings without restart) and the endless array of VSTs and effects hosted in one package.
“(It’s) a mechanics toolbox worth of useful tools, fx and instruments. It’s an audio mechanics dream.”