Anyone that follows this blog regularly knows what a fan of PreSonus Studio One I am. While the list of VST plug-ins we have reviewed on this site is vast, we always come back to one DAW, Studio One.
So why mention other plug-ins when Studio One 5 ships with a vast array of tools? Simply when adding VSTs to other DAWs, the DAW will find the VSTs sometimes, it won’t. Even when manually adding VSTs to some DAWs, the process is not always a productive or fruitful experience. Upon installing my upgrade to StudioOne 5, I noticed three things.
The upgrade process was simple. StudioOne recognized all of my audio settings, making the upgrade process simple. The speed of the application upon reboot was mindblowing. Everything loaded quicker than expected, including my VST plug-ins. Here is where we come to the third observation. I watched my plug-ins added to the DAW at speed so quick I could barely keep up with the titles of the VST plug-ins as they were loaded. My first question was, “will every experience with Studio One 5 be this fast?”
The UI (User Interface) is slick with exceptional tools for the professional and home enthusiast. My recent project files were neatly arranged on the home page. Subsequent tabs included my Studio One “Artist Profile,” Help and Demos, and a News Feed. Also on the front page is a direct link to Soundcloud. I could link my Soundcloud account to Studio One 5 in seconds. Again the theme of fast and easy applies to Studio One 5.
When selecting a new project, a very intuitive new UI presented itself. I did not have to hunt for tools or travel through multiple menus to begin creating music. The browser on the right showed me everything I needed to get started, including the VST connection to Toontrack’s EZ Drummer. Unlike other products that might allow you to import your drums as a single Midi file or a mixed down audio file, even worse.
Studio One 5 quickly brought in my EZ Drummer project and assigned each drum its own track. I could mix down the drums as if I were in a proper studio adding the right amount of reverb to the snare or EQing the bass drum to my liking.
Some of you might be thinking it is great I can add reverb and EQ to my mixes; however, you do not have these tools or the budget to add VSTs. That is fine. Studio One 5 ships with these native tools and more. I enhanced the drums using MixVerb and Pro EQ² bundled with the DAW.
Getting back to the front menu’s UI, there is a SHOWS section. At first blush, I thought this is where a user would keep recordings of live shows. I could not have been more wrong. The advent of Studio One 5 PreSonus has given the performing musician the ability to use studio-quality tools during live performances.
Using a laptop for live performances easily translates for DJs, keyboardists, and sound engineers. But what about us servants of the six-string sector? Guitarists can now use Ampire in real-time. You can plug your laptop into your amp for various fantastic settings, go directly to the front of the house or use a powered speaker, which I am doing right now with my JBL EON. Maybe you think this is pretty cool right now, but do you realize how cool it really is?
Let me get into this a bit more. Using Ampire live unchains you from the restraints of physics. A virtual amp gives you virtually endless possibilities. Can you imagine gigging with five amp heads and seven cabinets? Then having the ability to use any head with any cabinet? For most of us, this is physically impossible. Getting back to unchaining you from the restraints of physics, matching ohms or speaker wattage is no longer a concern. Do you want to match a Blackface with an 8×10 bass cab? Go for it. Make it happen if you wonder what a Dual Rectifier would sound like through a 2×12 AC30 cab. Making this cooler, Studio One 5 allows you to create setlists to tweak your amp configurations or tones for each song.
Once again, visiting the unchaining of the restraints of physics, you can run that blackface as hard or hot as you would like all night long without damaging a vintage amp.
I know some of you think there are rack units designed for this very purpose for guitar players. There certainly are, they are very costly, and most suffer from obsolete technology after a few years. Studio One 5 will continue to grow and add more models and features. Dare I say you are futureproofing your signal chain.
PreSonus Software has put together an innovative, intuitive, easy-to-use tool for musicians. The software runs incredibly fast, and during all of our testing, we experience no bugs or glitches. Choosing this software is a no-brainer, there is a free demo on the PreSonus website for download.
I could go on about the great new features in PreSonus Studio One 5, but the manufacturer has put together a great video you can watch below that better explains the new features.