Seeking accessible digital audio workstation/music software

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Hello everyone! First of all i want to introduce myself. My name is DharmaPutra. I am from Indonesia. Please help me find professional digital audio work station software, good for iOS and mac OS. For protules, i can not buy it. It is too expensive. And I am also looking for professional notation software to make the score. I have tried digital audio work station in windows. His name is sonar. But it seems that I have not been able to operate it properly. So, please help me find the software. thank you
Sorry if my english is bad. Because I use google translate.



Submitted by Daniel Angus MacDonald on Wednesday, November 15, 2017

I use Logic Pro X 10.3.2. it works great with VoiceOver. you can do lots of stuff with it, as it includes fifty GB of additional MIDI samples and effects.

Submitted by dharmaputra on Wednesday, November 15, 2017

I want to create a musical score and a sequencer. can logic be used?

Submitted by Voracious P. Brain on Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Given your last comment, then perhaps Logic indeed. I was going to suggest Reaper, which becomes accessible on both Mac and WIndows with the Osara extensions offered by the brillian Jamie Teh of NVDA fame. No IOS version, though, and I believe its MIDI features, while certainly present, may be somewhat basic.
Reaper is very reasonably priced, but, even better, you can use it forever in the free evaluation mode with only a simple nag screen. I was happy to buy it, though. Quite a learning curve, compared with simpler software like Amadeus Pro, but worth it.

Submitted by Remy on Wednesday, November 15, 2017

I would second reaper. I use it for the PC exclusively now both for its affordability (I did eventually purchase it) and its robust features. There isn't a single task I've come up against that reaper couldn't tackle after figuring out how to do it. That is one thing I will agree with: there is quite a learning curve. But there's a couple really robust and easy to read user manuals, as well as a blog/youtube channel called the Reaper Blog. And Reaper Mania, another youtube channel which is great, though not really descriptive as the guy who runs it says a lot of "like this" or "right here". I don't know if you can do scoring on it, but I'd be extremely surprised if you couldn't. The nice thing about reaper is it's extremely customizable. That makes it a bit overwhelming at times, but it also means if you need to do something and you want a quick way to do it, you just need to create your own shortcut key.

Submitted by Voracious P. Brain on Wednesday, November 15, 2017

In reply to by Remy

It's also less than a third the price of Logic Pro X. However, just glancing at the feature list, Logic looks like the bees knees for music production, whereas Reaper is more about audio editing. Or maybe it's just that my uses for Reaper don't get into MIDI or composing. Since the eval copy is free, it's nice to have around, regardless.
Garth Humphreys has done some nice, if very fast-paced, podcasts on it at Some of the config info has already changed since he put those podcasts up a few months ago, but I wouldn't have been able to get started without them.

Submitted by Remy on Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Annoyingly, it seems like almost all audio editing software is geared towards musical production. It's like nobody gives a toss about sound design anymore. Saying that, I use reaper for both audio theatre and sound design, and music composition. Its midi editor is very robust. I haven't taken time to learn all the keyboard shortcuts for the Midi editor, but I know they're there. I can't speak to scoring, but I bet a google search would turn up a lot. I know lots of people use Reaper for music. I myself have written several pieces on it using both midi and line-in. The only caviot with Reaper is it comes with no virtual instruments, where as stuff like Garage band and I think even Logic does.

Submitted by dharmaputra on Friday, November 17, 2017

I am confused to choose between sonar, logic or reaper. I want to learn to make provesional music. especially for people of sight.

Submitted by DJX on Friday, November 17, 2017

Hi, are you looking for a good way to produce pro audio tracks, or pro music scores, or both?

SONAR on Windows and now the recent Samplitued have an great amount of access using JAWS, to all you'll need to produce pro audio tracks. I especially like working with SONAR, since I do allot of complex arrangements, and being able to edit MIDI with great precise detail is a must for me especially when I'm composing tracks in the EDM genre and simiar fast pace or glitch type of music.
Once work slows down I plan to take Samplitude for a spin, as I hear great things about its capabilities.

As already mentioned, Sibelius is perhaps the most comprehensive and accessible software for writing out scores. Either 5.2.5 with Sib Access scripts, or try your hand at 7.51 with NVDA and see if the things they worked into the accessibility plugin/module will sute your needs.

For audio recording, I know ProTools on the mac is accessible with the use of FlowTools, and Logic by Apple is also usable, however each producer seems to have a varying report when it comes to how accessible/usable the software is. This is understandable, since we all have different uses and methods and workflow for producing. Someone who does allot of MIDI work for example, might not like ProTools as much due to its poor implementation of MIDI (which is supposedly improving). Some people like Logic and what they can do, while others want a bit more access to certain parts such as third party plug-ins, so they don't think it's as good.

All this to say, you must research and start by defining your needs and goals, and what your plan of action may be to get there, before you can decide on what tools will work best for you.
There's no real 100% perfect solution, and that's not just for blind individuals. Many producers I know use various DAWs, some do their midi work in fruity loop or ableton live, while audio recording is done in Cubase or sonar, others use a mixture of live and reason and record audio in ProTools, and yet others have developed a workflow that only requires 1 multifunction daw such as Cubase, sonar or reason, and the do both sequencing and audio recording in there.
You can keep it as simple or as complex as you like. It all comes down to what you want to do and how you plan to get there. If you don't know how you will get there? Well there are quite a few of us who offer online training services to help and guide people in turning their ideas into actual music and recordings.


Submitted by Remy on Friday, November 17, 2017

I've personally used Sound Forge, Audacity, Either Ableton or Qbase and Reaper. Ableton and Qbase aren't even the least accessible at the moment. Sound forge is very accessible on the PC the last time I used it, but it's a single track editor and thus useless for lots of projects. Though the very first audio theatre I did was actually in Sound Forge. It was crap by my standards now because I had to mix individual tracks, but for my first forrey into audio editing it was still really decent. Audacity is fantastic and free, but limited in its midi capabilities and the auditioning of live effects. Reaper seems to be the jack of all trades, plus it's extremely inexpensive. It can handle both the midi side of the equasion, as well as the deep audio editing side. Again the trade off is it comes with no virtual instruments, and its high amount of customizability means there's quite a learning curve. The up side is you seem to be able to turn almost any action into a keyboard shortcut, which, if you take the time to set up and memorize, can really speed up your workflow.

Submitted by Bruce Harrell on Friday, November 17, 2017

And what are the best choices for someone using Mac OS?

Submitted by Remy on Friday, November 17, 2017

I have no experience to back this up, but I'd expect the Mac is a lot more friendly in that department. I know Audacity is also on the Mac (again no Midi unless something's changed.) I've heard Pro tools is quite accessible these days. Also Logic. Then there's reaper of course with the Osara scripts. Anyone who knows things want to confirm any of this?

Submitted by Daniel Angus MacDonald on Friday, November 17, 2017

I am not sure if logic has a MIDI sequencer or not. I just know the basic(s) right now.

Submitted by dharmaputra on Friday, November 17, 2017

i will try again sonar 8.5 that i have, and logic pro for mac. regarding sibelius, are there any plugins for NVDA?

Submitted by peter on Friday, November 17, 2017

You might consider joining the MidiMag mailing list for blind musicians, producers, and folks who just enjoy music. There are lots of friendly people there who can share great advice on using such programs as Sonar, Logic, Samplitude, Reaper, etc. from the perspective of a blind person using a screen reader. You can find out more or join the list by going to: Just join and send a message introducing yourself and join the crowd! --Pete

Submitted by dharmaputra on Saturday, November 18, 2017

Ok peter, thanks for your informasion.