Reaper Audio Software - What's The Big Deal?


A number of people tell me, on a fairly consistent basis, what a great little editor Reaper is.

Most recently @fubidou has mentioned he’s using Reaper for sound design and imaging. So, what’s the big deal?

  • What makes this software great?
  • What is your favourite feature?
  • Is there anything Reaper can do that Adobe Audition can’t?

I know Reaper VST plugins are heralded as the holy grail amongst live streamers who use them inside OBS studio. Maybe I just need to give it a try and see what I think.

I’m interested to hear your opinions!

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I’ve used Audition ever since I started with Audio. Over the years I’ve taught myself a lot and I’d said I’m competent now.

I’ve heard reaper mentioned a lot by a few people but I’ve never been tempted. The one I have been tempted to try is Pro Tools.

I figure most radio stations use either audition or pro tools so if I’m going to learn a second editor it would be pro tools. I’m happy with audition, know how to do what I want to do with it, but if I was going to widen my horizons it would be with pro tools.

This is an interesting point of view @markdenholm. I too really love Audition and have done for years and years. It’s what I know and feel most comfortable with.

Still waiting to hear someone say… here’s the killer feature in Reaper and that’s why you should use it. I know this may spark up a debate about pricing.

e.g. Why pay $ per month when you can buy Reaper for $60.

My take on this is that Adobe Audition saves me time and that’s worth my money. I also use so much of the Adobe Creative Cloud (Photoshop, After Effects, Premiere Pro primarily) that price is a non-issue to me.

So, what is the big deal about Reaper then. Anyone? :smiley:

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As @markdenholm, I’m not a Reaper user but only one time I tryed with no shock at all. I prefer also AA. For music projects I’m tempted also with pro tools, but as I post before I have done some music projects in AA with no problems except for some shortcuts that pro tools has that AA does not.
I don’t know if the fact that I’m very use to AA, The Reaper interface does not “call me” as the AA.

Just thoughts



Good thoughts @Juanmapinker. I am also a little phased by the look of Reaper but that may be a personal preference and years of working inside Adobe Audition.

Would love to hear if there’s anything it can do really well beyond physical appearance and price.

Why do producers that use Reaper use Reaper?

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I used Audition for audio mixing/editing along with Sony Vegas from 2007-2014–thanks to your tutorials and help (I originally subscribed around 2011). So I can’t compare features of one to the other as they are right now. I’m not going to pretend I know. I’m always learning something new and cool, that I never thought of, with reaper.

I’m not going to lie, the price tag was a big selling point, but not the only one. I personally switched because I moved from voice overs and tutorials, back over to music production after a long hiatus, and Audition just wasn’t meeting my needs. I needed something that was entirely non-destructive, caused me less issues with VSTs (some incompatibilities, some crashes with Audition) and my guitar interface (ASIO), and something that worked better for multi-track recording, among a few other things geared towards music production. At the time I switched, I was also working with someone in the USA on a music project (I’m actually in Nottinghamshire, UK)–combining Reaper, which is also DRM-free, with Dropbox, made collaborating rather seamless.

That DRM-free part means that you don’t need an account or internet connection to activate or use it. No need for finicky USB dongles either. Now that was a big selling point for me, personally. Just a single license file that can be stored anywhere. I actually have it saved in my Dropbox along with other serial/product keys and license files for when/if I need to reinstall Windows for one reason or another. This means it’s possible to do a portable install on a USB drive–although you would forfeit some third-party VSTs.

I also like the customization and modularity of Reaper, with lots of user-created content–with presets for certain plugins, themes to spruce up the UI a little, scripts for automation among other things.

I’m open to being corrected, because it’s also been awhile since I’ve checked, but the last I knew, Adobe software wasn’t exactly Linux friendly. Reaper is. Since a lot of people seem to be moving over to Linux from Windows and MacOS these days, that’s a selling point for some.

A bit of a side note, is that between 2003-2006, I studied Contemporary Popular Music in college–music tech was a part of it. I was trained to use Cubase, and to a lesser degree Pro Tools. So the transition to Reaper wasn’t huge, with similar elements–all came back to me.

At the end of the day, they’re both tools, and since it’s served you among many others well, I’m guessing Audition is still a great tool. I think both may be geared towards specific people for specific use cases. But for what it’s worth, when your time isn’t money (meaning some to spare), it probably wouldn’t hurt to mess around with it. Considering that the evaluation version is completely unlocked, so you can get under the hood. Even after the evaluation version runs out, you can still technically use it…you just get a pop-up every time until you purchase a license.

That’s interesting to hear. So I’m getting benefits like:

  • Good for music production
  • Stable VST audio plugin support
  • DRM free (no internet needed to activate)
  • Price (buy once no subscription)
  • User created plugins, presets, themes and scripts (good community?)
  • Works with Linux

Very cool, is it easy to collaborate like this with Reaper over Dropbox? I’ve been doing this plenty with Adobe Audition .sesx files although I’d love a teams plan from Adobe that would show all edit the history.

Reaper handles MIDI, which Adobe is more than just negligent about addressing.

Reaper also takes idle tracks offline to save resources.

I just bought a license and am transitioning. Very big learning curve.

But since audition won’t update the win 7 version any longer, it makes sense. And 60 bucks a month savings makes sense to me.

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Hey, hey! Welcome back @cyberlarson and good to hear your Reaper experiences. I had no idea MIDI was supported in Reaper!

The midi issue… I don’t understand why AA can’t or won’t upgrade in that way. I hope that it’s something that one day it also can handle.


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Vote here on MIDI in Adobe Audition.

The more voices the better :wink: