The Top 3 Free Online Digital Audio Workstations to Mix your Music
Has the prospect of producing your own music or simply enhancing your favorite songs come your mind, lately? If that is the case, then you might want to check out some of the free online music mixing tools that we’re going to discover in this article!
Music mixing explained
But first, let’s learn a bit about what audio mixing is. This process essentially consists of optimizing and combining multitrack recordings into a final mono, stereo or surround sound product. When combining said separate tracks, their relative levels are adjusted and balanced within the stereo/surround field, moreover there are various processes – such as equalization, automation, effects, panning – that are applied to individual tracks, groups of tracks and to the mix as a whole.
Audio mixing techniques and approaches vary widely and have a significant influence on the final product. The music genre and the quality of the sound recordings involved also determine the resulting mix. Music mixing is usually carried out by a mixing engineer, who works with a mixing console or in a Digital Audio Workstation (DAW).
The 3 best free DAWs on the Internet
In this article, we’re focusing on the latter, that is DAWs. There are lots of online DAWs you can use to mix your music, tracks or preexisting songs, and the best thing about it is that many of them are completely free. Thus, we compiled a list of the best online DAWs that can help you cultivate your passion! Perhaps a seasoned musician might prefer a more professional DAW software (that will cost some money), but we think that the options we picked can be perfectly valid alternatives for beginners and amateurs on a tight (or nonexistent) budget.
Let’s find out what are the 3 best free online DAWs to mix your music!
1) Waveform Free by Tracktion
Tracktion Waveform Free earns top spot on our list given its richness in features, user-friendly interface and unlimited track count. Not only that, because this freeware DAW offers full VST plugin support and ReWire compatibility.
Waveform’s unusual and simplified workflow approach makes it ideal for complete beginners who have never used a DAW before, although its versatility can attract even professional music producers.
If you like using many virtual instruments while making music, Waveform is probably the best choice for you when it comes to free DAWs. Its workflow is in fact optimized for instrument plugins and softsynths, with intuitive MIDI sequencing.
Waveform Free is available for Windows, Mac and Linux: go check it out here to get started right away!
2) Garageband by Apple
If you own a Mac computer, then you probably know about the existence of Garageband, since this DAW is already built into your Apple PC upon purchase. Garageband derived from the paid software Logic Pro, and it could be considered as its downgraded version. But don’t worry, because this doesn’t make Garageband a subpar product in any way: on the contrary, this DAW is a great tool for mixing music, especially if you’re a beginner.
Its intuitive and versatile interface, its powerful features and richness in instruments and effects contribute to making Garageband a truly remarkable free software for music production. This DAW is a great place to start if you want to learn about multitrack recording, using MIDI and overall music mixing.
The only not-so-great thing about Garageband is that it’s only available on Apple devices (macOS, iOS and iPadOS). But if you own an Apple computer, you can download Garageband right here!
3) Cakewalk by BandLab
BandLab‘s Cakewalk is essentially a free rebranded version of the professional DAW SONAR Platinum, originally priced at around $600. The best part about Cakewalk is that it retains all of its predecessor’s features, and you won’t even need to pay a penny for it!
Some of the original SONAR Platinum features this DAW is equipped with are its native effects (equalizers, limiters, compressors, etc.), VST plugin support, analog console-style virtual mixer, Bluetooth MIDI and multi-touch support. Cakewalk also offers an unlimited amount of audio, Instrument, Loop and Aux Tracks in every project.
Cakewalk is ideal for music producers who are looking for the closest thing resembling a traditional digital audio workstation.
The only con regarding this amazing product is the fact that it’s only available for Windows. But if that’s not a problem for you, you can get Cakewalk for free here!