Logic Pro X vs Cubase (Which Is Best?)

Logic Pro X and Cubase 11 are industry standard production suites for recording and manipulating audio, that include instruments, effects + arranging, and mixing. In this article we’ll be comparing 2 of the industries best DAWs: Logic Pro X vs Cubase.

Cubase is suited for in-depth musicians, that enjoy advanced and razor sharp precision, when creating music and altering audio. Logic Pro X is better suited for beginner producers, serving as an incredible tool to quickly and easily go from idea, to recording, to a finished product.

Logic Pro XCubase
CompatibilityMac OS ExclusiveWindows + Mac Os
Amount of tracksUp to 1,000 tracks in a projectCubase Elements – Up to 64 MIDI and 48 Audio Tracks
Cubas Artist and Cubase Pro – Unlimited MIDI and Audio Tracks
Audio Resolutionup to 192kHzup to 192kHz
Instruments & Effects20 instruments and 14 Effects Modules8 instruments and 79 effect plugins (3 instruments and 47 effects with Cubase Elements)
TrialFree 90-Day TrialFree 30-Day Trial
PriceLogic Pro X – $199.99Cubase Elements 11 $120
Cubase Artist 11 $400
Cubase Pro 11$700

Logic Pro X

Logic Pro X is one of the most popular DAW’s ever released.

It started back in the 90s as Notator Logic, which then got renamed to Logic Pro, when the company was purchased by Apple in 2002.

Fast Forward to 2021 and the Logic Pro X 10.5 release has become an absolute blockbuster of a DAW, rivaling the giants of Ableton Live and Pro Tools.

The most recent updates have introduced non linear, cell-based loop recording, similar to Live and Bitwig, to help with both composition and live performance.

Logic Pro X is essentially the bigger, much better built and featured brother, of the awesome Garageband. So, if you enjoy Garageband, Logic Pro is the same, but way, way, way, more powerful.

The new Step Sequencer and Drum machines are an awesome addition, as well as the new Sampler, which replaces EXS24 and a lot of other new features.

Logic Pro X is more of an all-rounder when it comes to DAW software. It’s good at everything…

The metering is fantastic for mixing and mastering, the recording and comping features are fantastic for a recording workflow, there’s a lot of great stock plugins included, it’s easy to understand and get started with, and the production side of things is great too!

It also comes with fantastic synths like alchemy, retro synth, and a tonne more that are exclusive to Apple.

While the audio editing controls aren’t as in-depth as we’d like, it’s still awesome for recordings, with a very simple and easy to use interface. Any professional studio can easily use Logic Pro as the center for all of their audio tracks, plugins, and the rest of the studio.

What Is Logic Good At? (Pros)

Logic Pro X 10.5 is good at a lot of things. From manipulating your audio tracks, to incredible instruments, and tons of utility, Logic Pro nails a lot of the thing it sets out to do.

While we won’t be able to cover all of the awesome plugins and awesome features of Logic, Let’s look at what we think Logic does the best.

Stock Plugins

Logic Pro x stock plugins

Logic Pro X comes with arguably the best selection of, stock instruments, FX and mixing utilities.

You get multiple instruments, including 2 samplers, vintage emulations, retro synths, as well as the incredible Alchemy synthesizer.

In addition to this, you also get awesome Remix FX, as well as the incredible ChromaVerb, Space Designer, Boutique vintage EQ’s, compressors and other Mixing Utility.

The stock instruments are inspiring, and good for writing music of all genres.

Sound Library

Logic Pro X features an overwhelming 70GB of drag and drop content, to use in your music. From vintage synths, to cinematic drops and an entire orchestra section, the Logic Pro X sound library leaves little to be desired.

The Apple Loops integration also gives you access to a ton more samples and loops to use in your music.

Live Loops

Logic Pro x loop window

The new Live Loops feature brings the Session View functionality of Ableton Live, to Logic Pro X. Using Live Loops is an alternative to the usual linear view of logic pro, but both are interlinked.

Using Live Loops you can create on-the-fly arrangements, as well as full live performances, which you can record directly into the Track View.

Flex Editing

Logic Pro x flex time

Flex Editing includes both, Flex Time and Flex Pitch, which let you instantly manipulate the timings and pitches of individual notes in any audio track.

  • Flex Pitch is kind of like a poor man’s Melodyne, allowing you to individually tune notes from a recording.
  • Flex Time allows you to stretch your audio. You can use it on loops to change the BPM of them, while it keeping it perfectly in time. It also creates flex points you can edit individually or use quantise functions to snap the transients directly to the beat.

A quick and easy way to correct mistakes in recordings, or alter them entirely, Flex Editing makes audio manipulation in Logic Pro X better than it used to be.

iOS Integration

The Logic Pro Remote, available for all iOS devices, can turn your phone or tablet, into a multi-touch mixer and touch instrument.

From controlling live-loops, to adjusting levels from the other side of your studio, the Logic Remote app is one of the most awesome features of Logic Pro.

What Is Logic Bad At? (Cons)

As with any other DAWs, Logic has a lot of positives, as well as some negatives. While everything has it’s drawbacks, these DAWs are usually so well designed, that any cons that come with it are mostly just nit-picking.

That being said, there are some very valid drawbacks for Logic Pro X, which can be a deal-breaker to some people, in which case, Logic won’t be for you.

Mac OS Exclusive

If you aren’t deep within the Apple ecosystem, Logic Pro X might not be for you.

You can’t run it on either Windows or Linux, which means you’ll need an Apple computer to use Logic Pro X. Additionally, if you want to use the Logic Remote, you’ll also need an Apple phone or tablet.

Can be prone to Crashing

Especially with newer releases, Lags and Crashes aren’t too uncommon for Logic Pro X users. Especially, when you’ve got a lot of plugins and edits and processing in your project.

That being said, Logic Pro X isn’t the only DAW that crashes, but the frustration of having to halt your creative process is real, and might be too annoying to deal with for some people.

Audio Editing Features Aren’t Very Extensive

While the recent additions of Flex editing and the new samplers have improved the Logic Pro editing workflow, it’s still not up to par with other DAW’s, like Cubase and Ableton Live.

You do have plenty of options, and it’s not like the lack of features will hold you back too much, but sometimes you need some more advanced tweaking, to get the sound you want. For this reason, Logic Pro X might not be the DAW for you, if you’re looking for in-depth audio editing.

Features of Logic Pro X

  • Smart Tempo
  • Live Loops
  • Logic Remote
  • Step Sequencer
  • Drummer
  • Track Comping
  • Track Groups and VCA Faders

How Much Is Logic Pro X?

Logic Pro X is available on the Mac App Store for $199.99.

Alternatively, a free 90-day Trial is available, to test out and see if you’ll enjoy Logic Pro X.

Cubase

cubase daw

Steinberg’s Cubase is probably one of the most popular and beloved DAW’s ever created. Designed in 1989, for creating music with the (at the time) all-new MIDI protocols, to assist recording, editing and arrangement.

The original Cubase was a MIDI Sequencer, that was available on the Atari ST personal computer.

Later, Cubase became available for Macintosh computers and the rest is history.

With awesome audio-editing, and MIDI sequencing capabilities, Cubase is the favourite of many producers and composers, such as Hans Zimmer, Amon Tobin and Nils Frahm.

While platforms like Logic Pro X, Ableton Live, Bitwig, etc. have all been going slowly in the same direction, Cubase has remained in it’s own niche of users and fans, for decades.

Cubase also offers three different levels for it’s software, Cubase Elements, Artist and Pro. So, if you’re just beginning, picking up elements is cheap and easy, and upgrading to the next versions will only require you to pay the difference between the two versions.

With one of the smoothest and most intuitive MIDI editors, that lets you edit multiple MIDI parts at the same time as well as precise audio editing and processing, Cubase is still one of the best DAW’s out there.

What Is Cubase Good At (Pros)

Cubase is awesome at a lot of things, and once you get your head around the workflow, it gets even better. From incredible depth of audio editing and processing capabilities, to their industry standard MIDI manipulation and other professional utility, Cubase does a lot of things right.

Cubase is one of the best DAWs that has ever been created, so let’s look into what we think are the best things about Cubase, that make it so great.

Precise Audio Editing and Processing

While there are tons of audio editors and processing plugins available on the market, Cubase comes bundled with a lot of useful utility.

A complete set of metering and processing tools, that most DAW’s don’t feature as stock, allow for in-depth control of your sound spectrum. You no longer need to purchase tons of waves, ozone or fabfilter plugins, to complete your mixing plugin toolkit.

Flagship MIDI Sequencing and Arranging

cubase midi editor

Steinberg have been at the forefront of production software for decades. Innovations, such as MIDI sequencing and X-Y pitch and time graphs, have been copied by a lot of other DAW’s.

Cubase still is probably the best way to work with MIDI, with many MIDI Recording options, the MIDI Inspector as well as the Modifier Tab, you’ll have all the tools you need, to create music.

SuperVision multimeter analysis

cubase super vision analysis suite

Cubase’s SuperVision analysis suite is an absolutely incredible piece of software for metering when you’re mixing and mastering tracks.

And, in most DAWs, you’d have to purchase a 3rd party plugin to get the same kind of functionality.

You get up to 9 module slots, to create your own layouts of different analysis techniques.

You could have levels, a spectral imager, phase as well as waveform analysis in the same screen as your mastering levels, and tons of other analysis modules

Score Editor

cubase score editor

Cubase also offers a score editor, with a note editing overlay, as well as Dorico font support. Using the Dorico system, inputting notes with your computer keyboard is quick and easy, but can be tricky for first-time users.

Having a built-in notation system is awesome, if you’re working with scores.

If you’re a modern producer, you might not care about this. However classical types of musicians who do need it, will know how great it is to have notation inside your DAW.

Cross-Platform support

Unlike Logic Pro X, Cubase is a true cross-platform DAW, allowing for easy collaboration between users of Mac OS and Windows respectfully. While Cubase is certainly not the only cross-platform DAW out there, it needs to be mentioned on this article, because Logic Pro X is a Mac OS exclusive.

If you’re migrating from Mac OS to Windows, and have been using Logic Pro, you’re out of luck and will need to learn an all new DAW. For Cubase users however, this isn’t an issue.

Comping

Comping is an awesome feature, that’s finally starting to appear in more DAW’s.

Comping essentially lets you combine different takes and parts of an audio file, to create a “master” track.

If you’re recording vocals for example, and want to use the verse from your first take, but the pre-chorus from your 5th take, doing this is as easy as selecting the correct regions of your audio, that then instantly get copied and assembled into the main track.

Comping is also an essential tool, to keep track of all of your recordings, without creating too much clutter in your DAW.

Virtual Instruments

cubase groove agent se5

With Cubase, you get 11 different Virtual Instruments to use instantly in your music productions.

From wavetable and granular synthesis, to drum grooves, samples and analog synths, Cubase covers all the bases of your digital instrument needs.

Especially the incredible Groove Agent SE, which is possibly the most comprehensive drum production software instrument ever made. Providing more than just samples, Groove Agent has a massive library of grooves, patterns, sample as well as a virtual mixer and pads, to play your instrument like a real drummer.

What Is Cubase Bad At (Cons)

Just like Logic Pro X, Cubase also has some issues. While Logic Pro is locked to apple systems, Cubase needs a dongle. Small things like this stack up, and create some real annoyances for the end user.

That being said, none of our issues have anything to do with the sound quality, or user experience for an advanced user and the Steinberg Cubase is still one of the best DAWs

Steep Learning Curve

It’s no secret, that Cubase isn’t the most beginner friendly professional digital audio workstation. In fact, it’s notorious for having quite a steep learning curve.

Cubase will take time to get used to, but so does Ableton, and any other DAW for that matter.

Some are easier than others, like Logic Pro X, which is far more user-friendly and easy to understand, but it’s still difficult to pick up.

However, once you get used to Cubase’s layout and workflow, using it for any professional production project will work just as well as other DAW systems out there.

Optimized better for Windows

While Cubase is available for both Windows and Mac OS, the latter seems to struggle more. We’ve used Cubase on both Windows and Mac OS, and Windows just seems to work smoother and crash less, than it does on Mac OS.

That being said, the more recent Mac computers have ironed out a lot of these compatibility issues, so they might not be as much of an issue anymore. This is way more anecdotal evidence, than a concrete thing and your experience may vary, but it’s worth saying.

Features of Cubase

  • Score Editor
  • SuperVision metering
  • Comping
  • Easy Side-Chaining
  • Control Room monitoring environment.
  • Mix Console
  • Scale Assistant
  • SpectraLayers One audio separation engine

How Much Is Cubase?

Cubase has three different tiers of their software, namely, Cubase Elements, Cubase Artist and Cubase Pro.

  • Cubase Elements 11 Is available for $120
  • Cubase Artist 11 is available for $400
  • Cubase Pro 11 is available for $700

Before purchasing Cubase, we suggest trying out the free 30-day Trial, to see how you enjoy the Cubase Workflow.

Cubase VS Logic Pro X

Both of these DAW’s are absolutely incredible and are all you need, to go from an idea, to a complete track, ready for release. Both have tons of unique features, as well as things that are lacking, or not as appealing, so let’s try to sum it up: which is better in the battle of Cubase vs Logic Pro?

First of all, if MIDI Sequencing and arranging is the name of the game for you, Cubase will be the option to go for. If you’ve dabbled in music composition or come from a classical background, Cubase is literally designed for you. There’s a reason most film composers use Cubase after-all.

Cubase also stands out when it comes to recording and creating tracks, by utilizing MIDI instruments. In addition to this, the audio manipulation possibilities in Cubase stand above the ones available in Logic Pro X.

That being said, Logic Pro X is probably the best DAW for beginners to pick up and learn on. With a super intuitive and easy to use interface, Logic Pro stands far above Cubase in terms of ease of use.

The learning curve of Logic Pro X is also not nearly as steep as Cubase. If you’re a DIY musician and want the least possible resistance between you and the DAW, Logic Pro X is perfect for you.

It’s like two sides of the coin. Cubase is in-depth and advanced, but can be difficult to comprehend for new users. Logic Pro on the other hand doesn’t hide behind it’s lack of in-depth alterations and processing, instead, reveling in the simplicity and ease of use of the software.

The effects, instruments, and utility bundled with Logic Pro X are more appealing, than those of Cubase. But, on the flip side Cubase Pro comes with tonnes more instruments and sounds than Logic Pro, but the price is much higher for those instruments.

Logic Pro is the cheaper of the two, coming in at only $199.99 for a copy, whereas with the Pro version of Cubase is almost 3x more expensive.

In conclusion, both Cubase and Logic Pro X are solid options for your main music production, audio editing and composing platform. From mixing and mastering, to electronic music production, to recording, both DAW’s are absolute industry standard beasts. Whichever you end up choosing depends more on you as a musician, than any other criteria.

Verdict

Logic Pro XCubase
CompatibilityMac OS ExclusiveWindows + Mac Os
Amount of tracksUp to 1,000 tracks in a projectCubase Elements – Up to 64 MIDI and 48 Audio Tracks
Cubas Artist and Cubase Pro – Unlimited MIDI and Audio Tracks
Audio Resolutionup to 192kHzup to 192kHz
Instruments & Effects20 instruments and 14 Effects Modules8 instruments and 79 effect plugins (3 instruments and 47 effects with Cubase Elements)
TrialFree 90-Day TrialFree 30-Day Trial
PriceLogic Pro X – $199.99Cubase Elements 11 $120
Cubase Artist 11 $400
Cubase Pro 11$700

Cubase is suited for in-depth musicians, that enjoy advanced and razor sharp precision, when creating music and altering audio. Logic Pro X is better suited for beginner producers, serving as an incredible tool to quickly and easily go from idea, to recording, to a finished product. Whichever you choose depends on who you are as a musician.

Hopefully our comparison has helped you decide, which DAW is for you. At the end of the day, if neither of them are appealing to you, you can always use Ableton, Bitwig, Studio One etc. Don’t limit your options, when there are tons of awesome ones.

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