Comparison of digital audio editors

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The following tables compare general and technical information among a number of digital audio editors and multitrack recording software. Please see the individual products articles for further information.

General[edit]

Basic general information about the software: creator/company, license/price etc.

Digital audio editor Creator / developer Software license Microsoft Windows Mac OS X iOS Linux BSD Online Network storage External hardware
ACID Pro Sony Proprietary Yes No No No No No
Acoustica Acon Digital Proprietary Yes No No No No No
Ardour The Ardour Community GNU GPL No Yes No Yes No No NFS
Audacity Audacity Team GNU GPL Yes Yes No Yes Yes No NFS
Audiobook Cutter Free Edition Meline and Philipp Henkel Proprietary (Freeware) Yes No No No No No No No
AudioDesk Mark of the Unicorn Proprietary No Yes No No No No
Audiotool Hobnox Proprietary No No No No No Yes
Audition Adobe Systems Proprietary Yes Yes No No No No
BIAS Peak BIAS Proprietary No Yes No No No No
Cubase Steinberg Proprietary Yes Yes Yes No No No Requires hardware dongle
Diamond Cut ART Diamond Cut Productions Proprietary Yes No No No No No Unknown Unknown
Digital Performer Mark of the Unicorn Proprietary Yes Yes No No No No
DSP-Quattro Stefano Daino Proprietary No Yes No No No No
Ecasound Kai Vehmanen GNU GPL No Yes No Yes Yes No Unknown Unknown
FL Studio Image-Line Proprietary Yes Yes (beta) Yes No No No
GarageBand Apple Proprietary No Yes Yes No No No
Goldwave Goldwave Inc. Shareware Yes No No No No No
Jokosher Jokosher GNU GPL Yes No No Yes No No NFS
Kristal Kreatives Proprietary (Freeware) Yes No No No No No
Live Ableton Proprietary Yes Yes No No No No
LMMS Tobias Doerffel GNU GPL Yes Yes No Yes No No NFS
Logic Express/Studio Apple Proprietary Terminated (last version: 5.5.1) Yes No No No No
Mixcraft Acoustica Proprietary Yes No No No No No
mp3DirectCut Martin Pesch Freeware Yes No No No No No
mp3TrueEdit C2 Solutions Ltd., trading as iThinkApps.com Proprietary Yes Yes No No No No
MultitrackStudio Bremmers audio design Proprietary Yes Yes No No No No
MusE MuseE GNU GPL No No No Yes No No NFS
n-Track Fasoft Proprietary Yes No Yes No No No
Nuendo Steinberg Proprietary Yes Yes No No No No
NU-Tech Leaff Engineering Proprietary Yes No No No No No
Podium Zynewave Proprietary Yes No No No No No
Podium Free Zynewave Freeware Yes No No No No No
Pro Tools Avid Proprietary Yes Yes No No No No MediaNet (proprietary) Ilok required for all PT9 systems, other systems require a Digidesgin/avid interface, Pro Tools Free was the only exception.
Qtractor Qtractor GNU GPL No No No Yes No No NFS
REAPER Cockos Proprietary Yes Yes No No No No
Reason Propellerhead Software Proprietary Yes Yes No No No No
Record Propellerhead Software Proprietary Yes Yes No No No No
Renoise Renoise Team Proprietary Yes Yes No Yes No No
RiffWorks Sonoma Wire Works Proprietary Yes Yes No No No No
Rosegarden Rosegarden GNU GPL No No No Yes No No NFS
MAGIX Samplitude MAGIX Proprietary Yes No No No No No
MAGIX Sequoia MAGIX Proprietary Yes No No No No No
SONAR Cakewalk Proprietary Yes No No No No No
Sound Forge Sony Proprietary Yes Yes No No No No
Soundbooth Adobe Systems Proprietary Yes Yes No No No No
Soundscape 32 Mackie Proprietary Yes No No No No No External 2U rack unit
SoX Chris Bagwell, et al. GNU GPL Yes Yes No Yes Yes No
SpectraLayers Sony Proprietary Yes Yes No No No No
Studio One PreSonus Proprietary Yes Yes No No No No SoundCloud
Sweep Conrad Parker GNU GPL No No No Yes Yes No
Total Recorder HighCriteria Shareware Yes No No No No No
Tracktion Tracktion Software Inc Proprietary Yes Yes No Yes No No
Traverso DAW Traverso GNU GPL Yes Yes No Yes No No NFS
Usine Sensomusic Proprietary Yes Yes No No No No
VirtualDJ Atomix Productions Proprietary Yes Yes No No No No Optional MIDI controller, CDJs, DJ mixer with vinyl emulation software and CDs.
WaveLab Steinberg Proprietary Yes Yes No No No No
WaveSurfer Centre for Speech Technology at KTH BSD-like Yes Yes No Yes Yes No
Digital audio editor Creator / developer Software license Microsoft Windows Mac OS X iOS Linux BSD Online Network storage External hardware

Plugin support[edit]

The plugin types the software can run natively (without emulation).

Rewire Re JACK VST VST3 LADSPA LV2 DSSI RTAS AU DXi MAS
ACID Pro Yes No No Yes Unknown No No No No No Yes No
Acoustica No No No Yes Unknown No No No No No Yes No
Ardour No No Yes Yes Unknown Yes Yes No No Yes No No
Audacity No No Yes Yes Unknown Yes Yes No No No No No
Audiobook Cutter Free Edition No No No No Unknown No No No No No No No
AudioDesk Returns only No No Via converter Unknown No No No No Yes No Yes
Audiotool Unknown No Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
Audition Partial (Pre CS5.5 - Yes, CS5.5 - No) No Yes Yes Yes No No No No Yes Partial (Pre CS5.5 - Yes, CS5.5 - No) No
BIAS Peak Unknown No Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
Cubase Yes No No Yes Yes No No No No No Terminated (SX3.1) No
Diamond Cut ART Unknown No Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
Digital Performer Yes No No Via converter Unknown No No No Yes (with Digi TDM or HD hardware via DAE) Yes No Yes
Ecasound Unknown No Yes Unknown Unknown Yes Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
FL Studio Yes No No Yes Yes No No No No No Yes No
GarageBand Yes No No Via converter Unknown No No No No Yes No No
Goldwave Unknown No Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
Jokosher No No No No Unknown Yes No No No No No No
Kristal Unknown No Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
Live Yes No No Yes Unknown No No No No Yes No No
LMMS No No Yes Yes Unknown Yes No No No No No No
Logic Express/Studio Yes No No Via converter Unknown No No No No Yes No No
Mixcraft No No No Yes Unknown No No No No No DirectX effects only No
mp3DirectCut No No No No Unknown No No No No No No No
mp3TrueEdit No No No No Unknown No No No No No No No
MultitrackStudio No No No Yes Unknown No No No No Yes Yes No
MusE Unknown No Yes Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
n-Track Yes No No Yes Unknown No No No No Yes Yes No
Nuendo Unknown No Unknown Yes Yes Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown No Unknown
NU-Tech Unknown No Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
Podium Unknown No Unknown Yes Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
Podium Free Unknown No Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
Pro Tools Yes No No Via Wrapper Unknown No No No Yes No No No
Qtractor No No Yes Yes Unknown Yes Yes Yes No Yes No No
REAPER Yes No No Yes Unknown No No No No Yes Yes No
Reason Yes Yes No No Unknown No No No No No No No
Record Yes No No No Unknown No No No No No No No
Renoise Yes No Yes Yes Unknown Yes No Yes No No No No
RiffWorks Yes No No Yes Unknown No No No No No No No
Rosegarden No No Yes Yes Unknown Yes Unknown Yes No No No No
Samplitude Yes No No Yes Unknown No No No No No Yes No
SONAR Yes No No Yes Yes No No No No No Yes No
Sound Forge Unknown No Unknown Yes Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
Soundbooth Unknown No Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
Soundscape 32 Unknown No Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
SoX Unknown No Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
SpectraLayers Unknown No Unknown Yes Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
Studio One Yes No No Yes Yes No No No No Yes No No
Sweep Unknown No Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
Total Recorder Unknown No Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
Tracktion Yes No No Yes Yes No No No No Yes No No
Traverso No No Yes No Unknown No Yes No No No No No
Usine No No No Yes Unknown No No No No Yes No No
VirtualDJ Unknown No Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
WaveLab Unknown No Unknown Yes Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown No Unknown
WaveSurfer Unknown No Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
Rewire Re JACK VST VST3 LADSPA LV2 DSSI RTAS AU DXi MAS

File format support[edit]

The various file types the software can read/write.

OMF AAF MIDI WAV MP3 AAC Ogg REX2 AIFF FLAC Others
Acoustica No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes No Import Yes AU, WMA, W64
Ardour No[1] No[2] Unknown Yes Unknown Unknown Yes Unknown No Yes W64
Audacity No No No Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes AMR
Audiobook Cutter Free Edition No No No No No No No No No No MP3 audiobook
AudioDesk Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No Yes Yes No SDII (native)
Audiotool Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Yes Unknown Yes Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
Audition Yes Unknown No (unsupported since CS5) Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes AU, IFF, RAW/PCM, SMP, VOC, VOX, WMA
BIAS Peak Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
Cubase Yes No Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes WMA, W64
Diamond Cut ART Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
Digital Performer Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No Yes Yes No SDII (native)
Ecasound Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
FL Studio No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No XI
GarageBand No No Yes[3] Unknown Yes Yes Unknown Unknown No No
Goldwave Unknown Unknown Unknown Yes Yes Unknown Yes Unknown Yes Yes Windows Media Audio, AU, Monkey's Audio, VOX, mat, snd, voc
Jokosher No No No Yes Yes Unknown Yes Unknown Unknown Unknown
Kristal Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
Live No No Yes Yes Import Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes SDII (Mac OS X Only)
LMMS Unknown Unknown Yes Yes Yes Unknown Yes Unknown Yes Yes AU, DS, RAW, SPX, VOC. Can also open .flp files
Logic Express/Studio Partial Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Unknown Yes Yes Yes
Mixcraft No No Yes Yes Yes No Yes No Import No
mp3DirectCut No No No No Yes No No No No No
mp3TrueEdit No No No No Yes Yes No No No No
MultitrackStudio No No Yes Yes Yes No No No Yes No
MusE Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
N-Track No No Yes Yes Yes No Yes No Yes Yes WMA, EDL, WAV64
Nuendo Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No
NU-Tech Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
Podium Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
Podium Free Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
Pro Tools Yes[4] Yes[4] Yes Yes Yes Unknown Unknown Yes (7.4) Yes No SDII (Mac OS X Only)
Qtractor No No Yes Yes Yes No Yes No Yes Yes CAF, HTK, IFF/8SVX, MAT4/5, PAF, PVF, RAW, SDII, SDS, SF, VOC, W64, XI
REAPER Partial No Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes APE, BWF, MOOG, W64, WavPack
Reason No No Yes Yes Import Import No Yes Yes No SF2, ReFill
Record No No Yes Yes No No No Yes Yes No SF2, ReFill
Renoise No No Yes Yes Yes No Yes No Yes Yes MP4, MP4A, CAF
RiffWorks No No No Export No No Export Yes No No
Rosegarden No No Yes[5] Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Csound, Mup, MuxicXML, h2song[6]
Samplitude Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes WMA, RealAudio
SONAR Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Import Yes No Yes W64, CAF, SDII, AU
Sound Forge Unknown Unknown Unknown Yes Yes Yes Yes Unknown Yes Yes SWF (open only), RealAudio & RealVideo (export only), WMA and WMV, AVI, AIF, SND, MPEG-1 and MPEG-2, AU, DIG, IVC, PCA, W64, FRG, VOX, AA3, OMA, CDA, AC-3 studio (save only), RAW
Soundbooth Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
Soundscape 32 Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
SoX Unknown Unknown Unknown Yes External LAME Unknown Yes Unknown Yes Yes AU and other audio file formats
SpectraLayers Unknown Unknown Unknown Yes Yes Yes Yes Unknown Yes Yes .caf, .alac, RAW/PCM, .rm, .au, .snd, AVI, MXF, MP1, MP2, MP4, MKV, Quicktime, .vob, .wmv, WMA
Studio One No No Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes OpenTL, BWF, RF64, PreSonus Capture Session, Steinberg Cubase Track Archive, Steinberg Sequel Project, Kristal Audio Engine Project[7]
Sweep No No No Yes Yes No Yes No No No Unknown
Total Recorder No No No No Yes No Yes No No Yes PCM (uncompressed), WMA, Monkey's Audio (APE).
Tracktion No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Traverso No No Unknown Yes Yes Unknown Yes Unknown No Yes WavPack
Usine No No Yes Yes Yes Unknown Unknown Unknown Yes No
VirtualDJ Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
WaveLab Unknown Unknown Unknown Yes Yes Unknown Unknown Unknown Yes Yes AU, MP2, RAW
WaveSurfer Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown Unknown
OMF AAF MIDI WAV MP3 AAC Ogg REX2 AIFF FLAC Others

Notes[edit]