As technology continues to evolve, music creation becomes a lot more open to how we can do it. We are big fans of creativity, and the more popular production applications, the more we want to know which is the best.
If you are a beginner, you can use music production software for free. However, if your interest in creating music has grown and you want to take it to the next level, you should use high-end music production software.
These are the 10 best music production software including free and paid on the market today.
Audacity is one of the more famous open source audio editors that has had millions of downloads already. This software is a cross-platform package compatible with macOS, Windows, and Linux.
With Audacity, you can record music from various sources and handle virtually any type of sound. This software allows users to apply a wide range of effects to music, adjust pitch, treble and bass and even analyze songs with its frequency analysis tool.
The program presents the tracks as an editable waveform that the user can edit. Users can also edit audio files by cutting, copying, and pasting, or using an additional truck payload to improve efficiency and analyze the sound. Audacity has integrated support for the LV2, LADSPA, and Nyquist plug-ins.
Darkwave Studio is free software that allows the user of an almost modular sound studio supporting VST and ASIO. The program supports 64-bit Windows platforms from XP to 10. It only needs 2.89 MB of storage and you can add it to your desktop or laptop.
The first thing most users will likely notice that Darkwave is its elegant tabbed interface design. Darkwave has a streamlined user interface with lots of options and settings in separate windows and context menus.
The software incorporates eight separate modules, including a sample editor, HD recording, sequence editor, MIDI input and percussion. With the template editor, you can select and edit digital music templates. The string editor allows users to combine song patterns.
The HD recording tab includes recording options for streaming. The program also includes 19 built-in plug-ins to add virtual effects to songs, and you can add more VST / VSTi plug-ins to the software.
Studio One Prime is a freeware version of the Presonus Studio One software, supplemented by Artist and Professional editions with a retail price of $450. Studio One Prime is a stripped-down version of packages that you can add to your software library with your my.presonus.com account. The software is compatible with more recent Windows platforms, and you also need at least 4GB of RAM and 30GB of memory for it.
While the free software version lacks some of the options and native sound effects provided in Studio One Artist and Professional, there’s still a similarly intuitive drag and drop interface for creating new tracks and adding more effect. Studio One Prime includes unlimited music tracks, FX and virtual devices.
In addition, One Prime also has many multimedia editing tools MIDI and multitrack. So while this is a minified version of Studio One, it still has the essential tools for creating recordings.
LMMS, also known as the Linux MultiMedia Studio, is a comprehensive open-source music production application.
This software is cross-platform software you can run with Windows, Linux (Ubuntu, Mint and Debian), or macOS. Press one of the LMMS buttons on this site to save or install 32 or 64-bit for Windows. The program also supports VST and LADSPA plug-ins to incorporate a myriad of additional effects into the score.
FL Studio, formerly known as Fruity Loops, is a very popular digital audio workstation and for one good reason: it’s the most user-friendly, reliable, and most popular music software. This sophisticated music production software brings everything you need to compose, organize, record, edit, mix, and master the quality of your music – all in one place.
FL Studio comes in three versions: Signature, Producer and Fruity. All three versions share a few features in common. However, Signature and Producer offers many extra features and effects, allowing you to create truly masterpieces.
Decide which version you buy according to your needs. The tool also has a selection wizard that can help you decide which version of FL Studio to buy.
FL Studio 12 is used by international artists, like: Avicii, AfroJack, DeadMaus, Martin Garrix and more. This tool has everything you need to generate hits.
If you’re looking for a software music product for beginners, FL Studio 12 is a pretty good choice. It is made to be user friendly, so even novices can get the satisfaction of every music created to experience. While it might seem intimidating at first, you’ll quickly get the hang of it thanks to its user-friendly interface and the tutorials Imagine-Line posted on YouTube. It has a beta/demo version, but if you intend your future in the music industry – you’ll have to pay the price for more features and support from the developer team.
FL Studio system requirements:
- Operating System: Windows 10 / 8.0 / 8.1 / 7, Vista, XP (Service Pack 3) for 32 or 64 bit version.
- CPU: Intel Pentium 4 / AMD Athlon 64 (or later) 2Ghz.
- Memory: Requires 1GB of RAM or more
- Hard Disk: Requires 1GB of free disk space
- Sound card with DirectSound Driver.
Ableton Live is a powerful music production software that helps you put your ideas into practice. This tool has everything you need to create hypnotic songs.
The Live feature features advanced MIDI recording, allowing you to work with hardware or software compositing software, sampler and drum machine. The audio recording feature allows you to capture every sound from the real world.
Live also has a music sketch board that you can use to mix and match musical ideas without a time’s stiffness. Feel free and play with sound.
When you’re happy with the results, use Live Sort View to organize your notes and build your tracks. You can edit every detail by moving the music block or the time interval around.
Ableton Live offers a unique distortion feature that lets you change tempo and timing, in real-time, without stopping the music. If you’ve ever run out of ideas, you can use the tool’s set of sounds. There are over 3000 sounds that you can choose from, including acoustic instruments, many sampler drum kits, and more.
Want to download Ableton Live? Before you press the download button, make sure your computer meets the requirements to run the tool properly.
Cubase is a complete tool, covering all stages of the creative process from composing, recording, editing and mixing. The software doesn’t come with rigid restrictions, allowing you to put your creativity first and follow your workflow.
Cubase software comes in three different versions, perfectly suited to your experience and needs. Whether you are a beginner, or a music veteran, whether you only have a hundred dollars or a few hundred dollars to spend on music production software, you will find a satisfying tool. Meet every need, budget, experience or choice of music.
Cubase software versions:
Cubase Elements is turning your computer into a fully-equipped music production system. You can record, edit and mix MIDI sounds and songs and let your creative genius surface.
Cubase Artist provides additional editing and arranging tools that musicians often use.
Cubase Pro is the perfect tool for music veterans, producers and experienced musicians. Cubase Pro offers outstanding sound quality and a host of advanced audio tools and MIDI tools.
Do you want to download Cubase? Before you press the download button, make sure your computer meets the requirements to run the tool properly.
Cubase system requirements:
- Operating System: Windows 64-bit 7, 8, 8.1, 10
- CPU: 64-bit Intel or AMD multi-core processor (Intel i5 or faster)
- Memory: 4 GB RAM (8 GB or more recommended)
- Hard Disk: 18 GB free disk space
- Graphics card with DirectX 10 and WDDM 1.1 support.
The PropellerHead Reason is a complete digital music player that allows you to create, compose, edit, mix, and complete your music. The user interface is intuitive and easy to use; click and drag the sounds and instruments you want into the rack and play.
The stand is the center of the tool and it’s a dynamic feature. You build racks when you create songs, add tools, plug-ins, sounds, and effects.
The reason is a very versatile music creation tool. If you need more creative options, reason allows you to add additional VST plug-ins and Racks Extensions.
Tools are not all intrusive, allowing you to focus on your music first. The recording is easy, and you can get it done after you do it when you’ve finished the software’s powerful editing tools.
PropellerHead Reason system requirements:
- Operating System: Windows 7, 8, 8.1, 10
- CPU: Intel or AMD processor with dual-core
- Memory: 4 GB RAM (8 GB or more recommended for Expansion Tray or Rack Extensions)
- Hard Disk: 4 GB of free hard disk space on the system drive (the program can use up to 20 GB of head disk space)
- Audio interface with ASIO driver
Avid Pro Tools 12 is a powerful music production tool that will help unleash your inner creative genius. This tool offers many options that allow you to compose, record, edit, mix and share songs.
Avid Pro Tools 12 comes in three versions, each one tailored to your specific needs:
Pro Tool is ideal for new singers, composers and musicians in recording or the Pro Engine.
Pro Tools Pros is suitable for anyone looking for advanced tools to create music.
Pro Tools HD is ideal for people with audio and production capabilities who need maximum volume, performance and surround sound.
Avid Pro Tools 12 offers a host of unique features that set it apart from its competition:
Users can work with up to 10 collaborators in the cloud on a single project, including Pro Tools First User.
A revision project is a feature that keeps all version history and data organized for you. This feature allows you to explore new versions of songs or background music, take notes and quickly return to any previous state from anywhere.
Track Freeze is a useful feature that allows you to quickly freeze or clean plug-ins on a track to unleash processing power.
Avid Pro Tools 12 system requirements:
- Operating System: Windows 7 64-bit, Windows 8 / 8.1 64-bit, or Windows 10 64-bit
- CPU: Intel Core i5 processor (minimum)
- Memory: 8 GB RAM (16 GB or more recommended)
- Hard Disk: 15GB of disk space for installation
- USB port or FireWire port for audio device supported by ASIO
Cakewalk Sonar is an impressive music production tool that lets you build your tracks from above. Music tools synths allow you quickly create your rhythms, while the editing and mixing features let you polish your creations.
Like Presonus Studio One, Cakewalk Sonar relies on the world’s leading audio editing software for precise audio tuning, converting audio to MIDI, and more.
Sonar also supports VST3, the most efficient, accurate, and stable plug-in format for Windows PCs. Its compatibility with touch devices adds a similar feel to the creative process and enhances work efficiency.
Cakewalk Sonar system requirements:
- Operating System: Windows 7, 8 / 8.1 or 10 (32 or 64-bit)
- CPU: Intel or AMD 2.6GHz multi-core processor or at least Intel i5
- Memory: 4GB RAM
- Hard Disk: 5GB for minimum installation (20GB recommended)
- Audio Interface: ASIO compatible hardware is recommended
Those are 10 music production software for Windows & macOS that have many of the tools you need. The tools listed above are suitable for beginner, intermediate, advanced music lovers, and professional musicians.
If you have used the software listed in this article, you can tell us more about your experience in the comments below.