PropellerHead Reason 3.0
PropellerHead Reason 3.0

Reason 3.0, Sequencer Elettronico from PropellerHead in the Reason series.

content in English
FP User 01/11/2008

PropellerHead Reason 3.0 : Recensione di FP User (content in English)


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Reason is unique in that it makes patching things together in various ways very, very intuitive and encourages inventive thinking. I've found many times while using this program, I'll be at work and I think of a great way I could make an incredible sound happen, by routing a synth through some modules in a certain way, or getting a synth envelope to control a drum's pitch in the drum module or something, and Reason makes that all super-easy. The next best thing is Reaktor, which offers much more in the way of modular possibilities, but much less in terms of sequencing. When trying to use Cubase and Live after using Reason, I often get frustrated with not being able to route things the way I want. The feature that Reason really lacks is how it addresses audio files. You can't record audio in or put audio tracks through effects, unless you want to bring the audio through sampling-style, through the loop sampler, drum machine, or one of the keyboard samplers. You can do it, and I've made songs with vocoded lyrics (did I mention the vocoder is amazing?), samples of people talking dropped in, and cut-up guitar. But working with audio in Reason is hard, and it's never going to get easier, because of a strict agreement that propellerheads has with Steinberg: Steinberg releases Reason, and Propellerheads stays away from audio tracks. You can always drag reason in as a rewire slave, but I always find that to be a big pain in the butt. I know a lot of people who use Reason just for generating amazing sounds, and then record them and manipulate them in Cubase or Live. This is what I do a lot of the time as well. Overall Reason has a very interesting and unique feature set, perfect for making almsot any kind of electronic music, but not so great for making music that requires lots of audio tracks.

Price paid


Reason is a total cinch to use. Once you figure out the basics of how it works, it's easy to learn more and more about it, and the process of learning how to use Reason is basically just learning about how electronic music works. If you've ever used a midi-controlled synth, a midi sequencer, a drum machine and some effects pedals before, Reason will be no problem, and if you start your electronic music adventure with Reason (as I did), you can walk up to pretty much any old piece of hardware and figure it out almost immediately. Sequencing out tracks is simple, using the envelopes (with which you can control anything except for the song tempo, which is unadjustable for some reason), is super-simple, and it all makes a lot of sense. Unlike Cubase.


Not the best synth sounds. The SubTractor subtractive analog-style synth can make sounds that are as interesting, crazy, abrasive, smooth, dreamy, and whatever else as you can imagine, but none of it has the warmth and thickness of Arturia's line of vst softsynths, like the minimoog, moog modular or arp 2600. I think this is mainly because it only supports one oscillator per voice, so there's no unison, and the synth outputs in mono, so there's no stereo separation. The Malstrom has stereo output, but again no unison, and the unison effect box doesn't come close to reproducing the sound of real unison. That said, the NN-XT sampler, on the other hand, has a great sound. The reverb is solid and can be very smooth and expansive, atmospheric etc. The Scream 4 distortion box also offers really high-quality distortion effects, and the little family of mastering units is useful. Also worth mentioning is the vocoder, which in my opinion rivals Native Instruments Vokator in terms of sound.

Reason just doesn't crash, unless you really mess with it, like if you feed back the mixer into itself in some crazy way, I forget how I've done it, but by really trying, I can make it crash somehow. But in regular use, it's easy to forget to save, because it's super-stable. Mostly because it's all completely proprietary, so there's no VSTs or DXis or RTAS plugins to mess with it. It's also really good on your CPU - you can write a big, thick song without crackling out your chip.


I guess I kind of started out with Reason. I've started using all the craziest software out there, using Live with all those rad arturia synths, which sound better than Reason, and I can technically get a better sound out of Live, but I still fire up Reason when I've got an idea for an electronic song, and I still make amazing songs in it, because it's easy to get to know, and it's easy to make weird and amazing patches with it and get really custom, which is what I like, so for me Reason gets the most love of any of my software.

Originally posted on
Posted by: agreatwhitebird ( 2-, 2006)