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Cubase is a toolbox for musicians . In that toolbox, you will find tools to record, edit, mix, and publish MIDI and audio information, as well as tools to convert MIDI into printable sheet music.
In 1984, Steinberg created its first MIDI sequencer, which became known in 1989 as Cubase . This tool was designed to help musicians capture their performances in a MIDI sequencer. With the advent of MIDI, the computer could talk to musical instruments and vice versa. At that time, the processing power of computers was insufficient to properly record digital audio, so, musicians had to wait another 10 years before they could record audio digitally by using a computer. Steinberg was one of the first companies to develop an integrated system that could record to both MIDI and digital audio.
In 1996, Cubase became not only a MIDI sequencer but also a full audio production tool, contributing in many ways to the development and democratization of the creative process that lies inside every musician. Cubase VST (Virtual Studio Technology), the predecessor to Cubase SX, made this possible by providing the necessary software tools, replacing many hardware components with its software equivalent. Cubase SX/SL 1.0 integrated features that were developed in earlier versions, added new features, and streamlined them in a new, easier-than-ever interface. With the release of Cubase SX/SL 2, the earlier advancements have been refined even further, allowing you to work with a more mature piece of software. For example, you can now render temporary versions of your MIDI tracks passing through VST instruments to free up resources. You can also use the Time Warp tool to match tempo-based events with visual cues when working with video content. Another cool editing feature new to SX/SL 2.0 is the ability to repeat parts or events in a track by using the Pencil tool. These are just a few of the new features that you will find in this new version. Here is an overview of these tools:
MIDI recording environment. Cubase records and plays back MIDI information. This is the backbone of the music creation process since MIDI still is the most flexible way available to record musical ideas and edit them later.
MIDI editing environment. Once your MIDI information is recorded, you can edit it using one of many editing windows available in Cubase.
Virtual Instruments. If you don't own external sound modules, Cubase provides you with a way to generate sounds using a format called VST instruments , which is a virtual instrument (a software emulation of a synthesizer). This synthesizer resides inside your computer and uses your sound card to generate its sounds. You no longer need to purchase expensive synthesizer modules, since they are part of your "Virtual Studio" environment.
Audio recording environment. Cubase is a very powerful yet straightforward multitrack recorder that uses your computer's components as a digital audio workstation.
Audio editing environment. After your sound is captured on disk, Cubase provides all the tools necessary to cut, copy, paste, punch in, punch out, enhance, and manipulate your audio signals in an intuitive working environment.
Mixing environment. Once you have recorded, edited, and manipulated your MIDI and audio information, you can mix every track by using a virtual mixing console not unlike its hardware counterpart . This virtual mixer can accommodate multiple buses, multiple effects, MIDI tracks, virtual instrument tracks, groups, and audio tracks. Finally, you can automate your mix easily and create complex mixes without leaving your computer. And, if mixing with your mouse is not your cup of tea, you can connect one of several compatible hardware controllers to get a more interesting tactile experience during your mixing process.
Effects galore. Using the built-in audio and MIDI effects, adding third-party effects, or using effects already present on your system (like the DirectX effects available in Windows), you can color your sound in a wide variety of ways. The Macintosh version supports only VST effects. Your imagination is your only barrier here.
Multimedia production environment. Along with audio production, Cubase offers many synchronization tools useful in multimedia productions and video productions , making it a great postproduction environment for today's producers . Cubase now supports more import and export formats than ever, making it a great tool to prepare content for the Web, as well as for high quality surround (SX only) productions.
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