Having used the Reason 9.5 beta, I can tell you that Rack Extensions are still as great as they've always been. In many ways they feel like the core of Reason, with VSTs there in a supporting role.
Rack Extensions are fast, clean, and easy to use within Reason.
Update: it looks like major developers like Rob Pappen are still going to be supporting Rack Extensions, so I don't see them going anywhere. If anything, it will put more pressure on Propellerheads to improve the format!
Reason VST support, the long awaited, holy grail of music production was announced last week. This is huge, huge news. Using VSTs in Propellerheads’ Reason DAW will open up an entirely new world for producers to create huge, professional sound tracks.
It will unleash waves of creativity, I bet.
Using VSTs in Reason will not prevent you from controlling them with Reason’s super flexible CV routing structure, which means that you can get all sorts of powerful effects from VST instruments and effects that may not have been easy to do in other DAWs.
Reason VST support also promises to easily find your VST files (we’ll see). Not only that, they claim that crashes will be localized to only the “wrapper” containing the VST, and will not spread beyond to affect the Reason app itself.
While we can debate whether VST should have been there all along, I think this is going to be a great new frontier for Reason. And it doesn’t mean the death of Rack Extensions (at least not the existing ones). They are still going to be the most tightly integrated and stable way of doing things in the Reason ecosystem.
Automated Latency Compensation
And as an added plus, it also looks like Propellerheads is adding automated latency compensation, which is absolutely huge.
It’s always been frustrating to see that Reason creates phase issues when you start using different plugins on sends or parallel channels. There used to be work arounds, but it was cumbersome. Now we should just be able to fire up our songs and make great music.
What do you think? What are you looking forward to most?
The bottom line of this Warm AudioTone Beast Review? The TB12 is an amazing value, with great sounding, vintage tone. Retailing for around $599, it’s got good build quality, a ton of flexibility, and is very easy to use.
To begin this Warm Audio Tone Beast review, the TB12 features, from left to right, the input control section, the tone control, and finally its output section.
The input control is incredible, and one of my favorite features that Warm Audio added. It can take an xlr mic (with or without phantom power), a line level instrument, or an hi-z instrument like a guitar. You can pad down the instruments if they’re too loud (which allows you to use more of the TB12’s tone shapping), and add a decent sounding high pass filter.
From there, the real power of the Tone Beast comes out. With two discrete signal paths made with high quality cinemag transformers, as well as multiple tone shaping options for each signal path, you have a ton of flexibility in shaping your sound.
Sometimes these changes are very subtle. To really hear a different, you need to start cranking up the saturation knob on the output section. As the different signal paths get gained up, you can really start to hear the differences.
No Warm Audio Tone Beast review would be complete without digging into the sounds, though. With the x18 sounding a little brighter and “present,” while the 731 has more of a vintage, warm sound. Just be careful not to overdue it with the saturation. It is absolutely possible to get full on saturation and distortion effects on the unit, but it’s also possible to clip, which sounds decidedly un-musical.
But of course, tone is notoriously difficult to describe. So you can listen to a Tone Beast demo recordings here.
If you can only afford one preamp, I’d recommend the TB12 Tone Beast. Warm Audio did a great job in creating a high quality, affordable preamp that provides a ton of flexibility to the recording engineer.