Ed Driscoll

In The Mail Today

My review copy of Cakewalk’s Sonar 4 high-end PC recording program arrived today. Because there was no suite address on the tracking slip, I had to drive over to the San Jose FedEx office to pick it up, so I missed the debate–and the chance to put the online fact checker up in time.

It looks like a monster (Sonar 4 that is, not the necessarily the debate, although Glenn has a good round-up of Blogosphere opinion): for the first time, Cakewalk is adding surround sound to the equation, as well as a host of new loop and clip editing features.

If you’re new to home recording, this probably isn’t the program for you. But if you want a fully equipped Rolls Royce, it looks like it’s loaded for bear. (Hey, can I mix my metaphors, or what??) Cakewalk is really trying to build a PC-equivalent of Pro Tools, the pro recording studio program. And as surround sound grows in popularity from both home music video DVDs and CD replacements such as SACD and DVD-A, surround mixes will only continue to grow in popularity–something I discussed in my Blogcritics interview with Led Zeppelin engineer Kevin Shirley.

Watch for a full review of Sonar 4 on Blogcritics and some thoughts about it in my Electronic House newsletter in the not-too-distant future.

Speaking of stuff arriving today: kudos to eSoundz, whom I ordered a copy of Sonic Reality’s Vocal Textures add-on for the popular Reason modular software synthesizer earlier in the week. When it arrived yesterday and the disc wouldn’t work with my PC (it delivered some sort of “cyclic redundancy check” error), they overnighted a new copy out to me. Great service!

Update: Here’s a pretty thorough first review of Sonar 4 from ProRec.com.