It’s an exciting time to be producing music. Reason, the celebrated rack of virtual gear, is no longer just standalone music software. With Reason 11, Reason Studios (formerly known as Propellerheads) has brought the entire rack to all other DAW users with the Reason Rack Plugin. We’ve spent some quality time with the brand new AAX version and wow, it’s great to be back!
Originally conceived way back in 2000, Reason’s walked a different path than other music software. While it’s grown from a synth rack into a full-fledged DAW, the focus is and always has been on the masterfully designed devices. Stacking up your rack with instruments, effects, utilities and MIDI effects is both exciting and addictive. It’s that explorative part of music making, where ideas are generated and inspiration strikes, that Reason’s all about. Tapping into that within Pro Tools with the AAX Native Reason Rack Plugin is even better, while ReWire remains a viable option for other products to work together with Pro Tools.
This tight integration of Reason Rack as an AAX plug-in within Pro Tools allows creators to access all the powerful music creation features and workflows with speed and efficiency, with no workarounds and low host CPU usage. The combination of Reason’s veritable bounty of instruments, effects, and MIDI utilities, paired with the world’s industry standard DAW, Pro Tools, with its unmatched editing capability and sonic fidelity, is truly a match made in heaven.
Pro Tools and Reason Rack are both iconic, in their own right. Pro Tools is known the world over, with its familiar edit/arrange and mix windows. Reason is immediately recognized by its easily accessible rack. Then of course there are the cables. The dangling virtual audio and CV cables when you flip the Reason Rack around still evoke a smile as much as ever. With the ever-growing array of devices and numerous third-party Rack Extensions, you can go super deep with the modularity of the Reason Rack. Everything is automatically patched together in a logical way, but you can freely change the routing and experiment to find your sound.
While checking out the Reason Rack AAX Plugin in Pro Tools, we’ve been reminded why we love devices like Thor Polysonic Synthesizer and Redrum. The flexibility and raw synthesis power of Thor makes it the choice for those iconic synth sounds while Redrum’s drum machine workflow is super intuitive. It’s perhaps strange to talk about “classics” in software, but these devices definitely check the boxes for it.
If you haven’t checked out Reason in a while, there are many new devices to explore. The Europa and Grain synthesizers, a wavetable and granular synth respectively, deliver a vast array of sounds that feel at home in anything from chart toppers to expressive film scores. The dynamics and EQ from Reason’s mixer are in there too, so you can stack up as many Master Bus Compressors as you want. We could go on about the instruments and effects in Reason for many more blog posts, there are over 70 devices in the Suite version of Reason, but we’ll leave it there for now.
There is something natural to having the Reason Rack inside of Pro Tools, just like having that trusted hardware rack next your favorite console that you turn to for every track. And with the breadth of devices and possibilities in Reason, there’s something for everyone in that rack. Reason is for sale today on the Avid Marketplace and we’re really happy that you’ll be able to put this dynamic duo to work again.