Gear Review: Propellerhead Reason 7.1 and Reason Essentials 2

reason7Propellerhead just released Reason 7 and Reason Essentials 2, both major updates with deep, streamlined mixing and a complete rack with all types of instruments. Version 7 integrates all instruments, in and out of the box, and hardware synths via the External MIDI Instrument module.

There is now automatic audio slicing/quantize for enabling quick fixes or style changes of already recorded audio performances—even conversion of those recordings into your own personal REX loops for further creative possibilities in the rack.

For mixing, Propellerhead adds a spectrum analyzer with visual EQ controls to “see” what your tweaks do to the audio waveform in real-time. I like the one-click group and parallel mix channels feature—it gets you to the world of modern parallel effects and automation.

Reason 7 imports audio in either mp3, AAC, WMA or others and the Factory Sound Bank comes with a fresh collection of loops and drum kits. Audiomatic Retro Transformer adds character to any sound with 16 snapshots going from Vinyl and VHS tape to PVC pipe.

Reason 7 sells for $449 and Reason Essentials 2 is $129.


Barry Rudolph is a recording engineer/mixer who has worked on over 30 gold and platinum records. He has recorded and/or mixed Lynyrd Skynyrd, Hall & Oates, Pat Benatar, Rod Stewart, the Corrs, and more. Barry has his own futuristic music mixing facility and loves teaching audio engineering at Musician’s Institute, Hollywood, CA. He is a lifetime Grammy-voting member of NARAS and a contributing editor for Mix Magazine.http://barryrudolph.com