WINNER: PreSonus Studio One
Price Prime: Free Artist: £85 Pro: £345
The past year saw many sizeable DAW updates across the board, each bringing new and enhanced functionality to its native environment. Studio One’s evolution was an existential shift five years in the making. With its nifty new Show Page, version 5 is a fully-fledged live-performance hub that can finally go toe to toe with Ableton Live. The new score editor is one of many convenient additions too.
Highly commended: Cakewalk by BandLab
Releasing the beloved Cakewalk Sonar as a free-to-use DAW was a generous move but BandLab hasn’t rested on its laurels. Over the past few years, incremental updates have helped bolster Cakewalk’s workflow with studio-quality effects, unlimited tracks and built-in tools for practically every stage of the production process – and all for free.