How do you choose your DAW?
First of all, don't overthink DAW's. Just watch tutorials and demos of different DAWs and download trial versions of the ones you might like, and then pick one and buy it! There are lots of options but rather than getting confused about which one is the best for you, it's more important to really know your DAW inside out so you can make the most of whichever DAW you end up choosing. It is recommended to go with one of the big five, i.e Logic, Ableton, Cubase, Studio One or FL Studio.
Features - Brief Overview
Logic is really intuitive just like all apple products, has great MIDI and arrangement features. Ableton is most convenient with handling automation and is also great for live performances especially when you want to trigger elements on the fly, while FL Studio is best known for its playlist and piano roll. Studio One is also a great DAW especially since it is very easy to use and has loads of chord and pattern based compositional tools within it. Cubase has some cool pitch correction features like variaudio and also has great MIDI capabilities. All DAWs are quite similar when it comes to audio recording capabilities. Although Pro Tools has been the industry standard for audio recording, over time all DAW's have caught up and reached similar standards of professionalism over the years.
Audio Recording Quality Across DAWs
For years there have been debates on the audio recording quality of different DAW's, but the fact is that the difference in audio quality across different DAW's is so minimal that the human ear can rarely perceive it. Therefore, this topic of audio quality of recording is pretty much irrelevant when it comes to choosing your DAW. Every DAW is equally capable of recording audio professionally. When you look at audio quality of the recording, it depends largely on the mics and recording room. The preamps and converters used for recording also affect the audio quality but not as much as the choice of mics and recording environment.
Soundbanks And Samples
Every DAW comes with it's own set of sound banks and samples. Logic Pro, Cubase, FL Studio, Studio One And Ableton all come with a huge collection of loops and synth presets that you can use in your productions. This is where DAWs are a little different, in the sense that the presets and samples that you get along with each DAW vary quite significantly. However, that is rarely an issue, because all the major DAWs support VST plugins and can load external samples. If you're looking for some really cool sample packs click here.
Figure out which DAW you would like to choose. At this point in technological advancement every DAW is equally great when you look at the overall functionality so it's mostly a matter of personal preferences. As budding music producers it is easy to get entangled into the various DAW options and getting stuck with deciding which one to choose.
The user interface and the samples and presets that come along with each DAW vary more than the technical features and sound quality, so rather than this post telling you which one to choose, our emphasis is more on 'choosing your DAW yourself' and then 'knowing your DAW inside out' rather than obsessing about 'which DAW to choose'.
Every major DAW has VST plugin support and has the ability to import external samples so you always have scope to expand your collection of samples
as you go along, regardless of which DAW you choose.
So what are you waiting for? Waste no more time debating on which DAW is best. Just choose your DAW and start making some great music!