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Goodbye Cakewalk Sonar - Gibson Pulls Plug on Classic DAW

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Hard to believe it, but Cakewalk has come to us end of life.


Gibson Brands announced today that it is ceasing active development and production of Cakewalk branded products. The decision was made to better align with the company’s acquisition strategy that is heavily focused on growth in the global consumer electronics audio business under the Philips brand.

Cakewalk has been an industry leader in music software for over 25 years by fusing cutting-edge technology with creative approaches to tools that create, edit, mix, and publish music for professional and amateur musicians. Gibson Brands acquired Cakewalk in 2013.

Gibson Brands, a growing company in the music and sound industries, was founded in 1894 and is headquartered in Nashville, Tennessee. Gibson Brands is a global leader in musical instruments, consumer electronics, and professional audio, and is dedicated to bringing the finest experiences to consumers by offering exceptional products with world- recognized brands.

Read the full story - http://www.cakewalk.com/Gibson-Announcement


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  • 1 month later...

Having started with Cakewalk for MS-DOS a few decades ago (after graduating from the C-64/SX-64 and Dr. T's KCS to an 8086/8088-based MS-DOS system), the demise of Cakewalk hits hard.  That being said, as "legacy" software SONAR (and related software) will probably continue to be used for quite a while by those of us who have grown accustomed to its face--until such time that Windows/Microsoft does updates/upgrades/outdates that render the software incapable of being run on current and future PCs. My guess is the code and formats will probably not be open-sourced, although that might be nice if it were made available.  


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Its a well-kept secret, but Cakewalk has risen from the ashes of Gibson.  In fact, Cakewalk by Bandlab (or CbB) as it is now known is at the moment very much alive and well with on-going improvements and fixes. Not only that, but it is free--as in no cost, though from what I have read you do have to log in via the BandLab Assistant software something like every six months. However, with the frequent improvents (new features, etc.) when you boot the new and improved Cakewalk, there's a small box that tells you an update is available.

Old-timers like me will appreciate that old plug-ins purchased over the years (or decades as the case may be) have their TTS/Cakewalk/Sonar plug-ins (well, most of them in my experience) migrate to the current incarnation of Cakewalk. I have even had the old-style *.wrk files (predating *.cwp files) work!!!!

Old-timers who paid hundreds or thousands over the years/decades need not be jealous that now anyone can get Cakewalk by BandLab for free--because we have years/decades of the Cakewalk plug-ins that are not part of a new installation.

Some footnotes: Among other things, BandLab also has the web/browser-based BandLab software. That should not be confused with Cakewalk by BandLab, though I just stumbled onto a "preview feature" that might appeal to electronic musicians wishing the complexity of a full-featured DAW combined with the collaborative potential of BandLab--"BandLab import and export (preview feature)."

Apologies if enthusiasm is out of place here. We all have our own preferred tools, workflows, etc. for sure, but when I saw that the most recent post here about Cakewalk was "Goodbye . . . Gibson Pulls Plug on Classic DAW," I wanted to sing praises of its resurrection!



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