Welcome into the World of Beat Production!
Your Hip Hop beats do not sound as fat as you’ve imagined? Have you ever produced songs from other genres and would like to try out Hip Hop? Or is the Beat-Producing perhaps even complete new territory for you? Then this article will give you some practical tips on selecting the right music software for making Beats (also known as DAW or Digital Audio Workstation).
Through the digital age, there was a change in the music industry. It was no longer necessary to rely on the expensive analog technology of the large recording studios.
Today, with a PC or laptop and the right music software, you can get into the production of hip hop beats at low cost. Meanwhile, a variety of audio software manufacturers exist.
Which is the right thing for you depends, among other things? The following factors:
- How much budget do you have for the software?
- Which user interfaces are intuitive for you?
- How stable is the software with extreme track numbers and effects?
- How is the integration with your existing controller and hardware?
- Does the existing sound library fit into your musical ideas?
- What options do you have to extend the software (for example, through VST plugins)?
- Do you have the possibility to combine different modules creatively?
- What is the community of users?
Here you can find a small selection of the most common DAWs. Take a look at the product videos and use the demo versions on the manufacturer’s websites to get a good insight:
- Ableton Live https://www.ableton.com/en/
- Apple Logic Pro https://www.apple.com/lae/logic-pro/
- Avid Pro Tools http://www.avid.com/en/pro-tools
- Cakewalk Sonar http://www.cakewalk.com/products/sonar/
- ImageLine FL Studio http://www.image-line.com/flstudio/
- Steinberg Cubase http://www.steinberg.net/en/products/cubase/start.html
- Propellerhead Reason https://www.propellerheads.se/en/reason
- Cockos Reaper http://www.reaper.fm
Personally, I started working with Magix Music Maker more than 13 years ago to produce hip hop beats, because the software was very simple and very suitable for beginners. You mostly have to mix and arrange audio loops until you get a decent mix that you could then boast to your friends 🙂 That’s what happened at the age of 15…
A little while later I met Fruity Loops also known as FL Studio. Fruity Loops is a versatile and powerful audio software for making Hip Hop beats in your home studio or in a professional studio.
Many well-known Hip Hop producers still work today with Fruity Loops, countless Youtube Tutorials for hip hop beats confirm this impression.
All you have to do after you get the FL Studio (or any music software) is to get a good collection of drum samples and instruments. You do not want your beats to sound the same as other hundreds of producers who use DAW’s stock sounds.
At some point, I tried Propellerhead Reason in parallel with Steinberg’s Cubase and the results was quite complex. In the current version of Propellerhead Reason 9.5, VST plugins are supported. Until recently, this was not possible.
We often play with Ableton Live in the studio and even use Logic Pro in some cases, but I remained at first love: FL Studio.
In the studio, it’s important to have more than onemusic softwaree because we often get different projects from producers, customers, and artists who use different DAWs.
To can make an extensive comparison of all DAWs you must go deeper and use a software for at least several weeks, in order to “know” the strengths and weaknesses of a software properly.
When people ask me which music production program is the best, I always answer that the best music production software is that you know how to use it, that is. Nowadays all DAWs are related on features and functionalities, mostly differ only in the workflow.
You can make a hit with Logic Pro, Ableton Live or FL Studio … or do nothing good, no matter what program you use. You have to learn first how to improve your musician skills, basic theory and a lot pf practice.