What's the best music creation program?

I’m getting ready to start composing music for the movie I’m making, and I need it to soud good, as if it was played by an actual orchestra or live instruments. I’ve been using Anvil Studio to do some work, but the quality is just not there. It sounds too much like a keyboard.

I have no objection to purchasing a couple hundred dollar piece of software if it will give me the quality I need. I just need to know which program to buy.
I also need a program for sound effects, but that’s not as high priority as the music.

I’ll also admit that I have very little knowledge of digital music software (I’ve only used Anvil) so if at all possible I’d like to find a program that’s also user friendly.
Thanks in advance.

AFAIK, Anvil Studio only uses MIDI, so if you want something higher quality, I would suggest getting a better MIDI card. Any other software that uses MIDI for it’s output will sound the same as Anvil Studio. As for other software, you could try Cubase, I’ve heard it’s rather good. For writing music scores, I think Sibelius is probably the most common.
If you are using Linux, you could try Rosegarden (open source)


Very good software, allows you to compose music rather than just put a buncha audio clips together.

if you’re going for synthesizers, try FL Studio (Ven0mSevenX’s post) or Propellorheads’ Reason: http://www.propellerheads.se/reason/

also, try this link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Music_sequencer

Could you give a description of you will be doing with it?

I’m a composer by trade, and I like ‘Reason’ very much…it has a few small things missing from it’s sequener, but the ‘in house’ approach works very well…and has a pretty decent orchestral library built in.

Mine was a crack, so…it’s like Blender :slight_smile: ha ha

Try also Audacity
http://audacity.sourceforge.net/ in connection with some VST plugins.
But IMO FL Studio is the best (but it cost so much…)

I just use old trackers like ModPlug Tracker and Fast Tracker 2.

Thanks for all the suggestions. I’m downloading trail versions of Reason and FL Studio now. I’m still open to more suggestions if anyone knows of any other programs.

i use cakewalk but my brother has a studio and it’s expencixe

before that i used audacity

If you want synthesizers and somewhat of a decent audio “lab” almost, I would suggest Buzz. Granted development has been rather slow/nonexistent on it for the past couple of years (as far as source code is concerned), but every now and then a new synth or effect comes out.

For orchestral stuff, like I think you are talking, I would suggest doing some research into Garritan Personal Orchestra, which is fairly decent. There is another good one, but I can’t remember its name off the top of my head, it seems like it cost several thousand dollars though.

For composition, Sibelius is definitely top of the line, with Finale right there behind it.

I cant believe no one mentioned Cubase sx and Logic Pro.

Neither Cubase or Logic Pro are going to produce better quality sound from a cheap soundcard than cheap or freeware/shareware MIDI sequencer software.

Spending money on a better souncard (or even better ,renting a good sound syth) will produce much more dramatic results.

Also, as mentioned previously, using sound libraries like the “Personal Orchestra” or software syths like Reason (an amazing program) are avenues to better sound, the sequencer software will have less if any effect.


>>>> Neither Cubase or Logic Pro are going to produce better quality sound from a cheap soundcard than cheap or freeware/shareware MIDI sequencer software.

when you render the mixdown?

I was a bit short on my original message, I revised it.

A high end sequencer will most certainly have better tools / doodads etc than a lowend sequencer, but the point is that the sound source, be it a hardware synth / sound card or software samples … plus of course the most important thing ; the musicians talent and skil, will have much more effect on the final result than a more expensive sequencer used on a cheap soundcard / samples


GPO is indeed a good set of sounds, and it comes bundled with Finale now. I still prefer Sibelius by a mile, but it’s $217 or so extra to get it with Sibelius. GPO is also resource intensive so low-end users beware.

Indeed GPO is resource intensive, but most sound samples of that level of quality will be so.

I now remember that other software I mentioned earlier- EWQLSO (or Here)

Lowest Price I see it is still above $1000, but it sounds incredibly good, even compared to GPO. For a good comparison of the two listen to both software’s version of Mars (Gustav Holst composer) and compare the qualities and depths of tone and intonation produced (obviously EWQLSO smokes GPO). GPO, though, I suppose is good for the composer/technician on a budget. (I’ve heard that GPO was used in the production of some of KOTOR’s music, by the way)

Edit: The silver version of EWQLSO is actually cheaper than GPO! ($4 cheaper anyways)

I am going to be doing a movie, so I looked for a free program that could do what I was wanting, but could not. So I got Reason. Reason seems to be the best for me. It is able to do my sound effects mixing for the movie and the music mixing and creating. also I can get all my old midi files, and put higher quality sounds on the different instrument tracks. Reason has a lot of instrument sounds, but in a way I still like the instrument sounds I have on my Yamaha DGX 500 more than Reasons, but it all depends on the music style sound I am going for. I originally just made up my music using only my keyboard, but Reason is a whole lot easier for editing and remixing my music. As well as it sounds like it is an orchestra… at least to me.

Where is the mentioned sample of Mars?

Click the second link, and go to demos, or just click here to go straight there.

(Garritan’s Mars is on this page)