Audio editing software
Features and tools: Most audio editing software offers basic audio editing tools, such as the ability to split audio, change the volume for clips and tracks, apply fades, and so on. Some can loop audio, making it easier to create beats, while other software has built-in effects that can make your audio sound smoother and radio-ready. Some audio editing software, like Adobe Audition, even has AI tools that can help you clean up poorly recorded audio.
Think about the features you’re looking for when purchasing or subscribing to new audio editing software. “Whether it’s the meticulous refinement of vocal tracks or the intricate editing of drums, these tasks often involve repetitive elements,” says Arnd Kaiser, General Manager of Software at PreSonus. “The more time we save on these routine processes, the more we unleash our creative potential. Adapting my editing software to my unique workflow is key. It gives me the strength to channel my energy into the creative process.”
Compatibility: There is no point in purchasing software that will not work with your system. Most audio editing software works on both Windows and MacOS, but there are some exceptions to that rule. For example, Apple’s Logic Pro only works on Macs and iPads. Some audio editing software supports operating systems like Chrome OS and Android – although in the case of Android, that usually means a stripped-down version of the software that doesn’t offer all the features that the desktop version has.
Prices: Many of the options on this list, including Pro Tools and Adobe Audition, are available as part of a subscription and cannot be purchased. There are still some audio editing software you can purchase outright. A good example of this is Apple’s Logic Pro, which you buy and then get updates for as long as you use it – or until Apple changes its pricing structure. Subscription software costs less upfront, but will ultimately cost more if you use it for a longer period of time.
Updates and upgrades: If you buy audio editing software outright, you probably won’t get any significant upgrades over time, although you may get minor updates. There’s one notable exception to that rule: Apple’s Logic Pro, which gets regular updates at no extra cost. Subscription-based software comes with regular updates as part of the subscription cost. If regular updates are important to you, it may be worth choosing a subscription option.
Learning resources: Audio editing software can be a bit tricky to get used to. Especially if you’re new to audio editing in general, opt for software that has significant support resources. Most audio editing platforms have a large user base who participate in forums and other online communities. Some developers run their own online communities. An example is Presonus, which offers access to its self-managed online community as part of its subscription. If you want direct support from the company that makes the software, you’ll likely get it when you subscribe.