Sonic State Studio / Audio Software /
 Steinberg Nuendo At a Glance   arrowSteinberg News(235)   Streaming Video (16)
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arrowReleased: ~ March 2000  arrowVersion: 1.03
arrowRated: 8.5/10arrow User reviews: (2)
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arrowSoftware: Win 95/98, Win NT, Win XP, OSX,
arrow Plugin formats: VST. DirectX. Audio Units. RTAS
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Alex Daniels writes:
Nuendo was initally made for Silicon Graphics workstations as a high end audio mixing program. It was then completely rewritten for Windows and released in early 2000. (All native windows coding - not a port [aka hack] job.)

If you've used Cubase, Nuendo will look quite familiar, with it's VST mixer and editing tools. However, the audio editing side is more mature than VST, allowing for 5.1 channel surround mixing and some other really nice features missing from Cubase. The MIDI side is underdeveloped compared to VST because the program is pitched towards audio/video editing and film post-production (at least for now). You basically get the "piano roll" editor, some note quantization and that's about it.

Something you won't see in the literature is that it supports LTB for accurate MIDI timing, just like VST 5. So when Steinberg finally gets around to releasing the Midex, you can get ulta-accurate midi timing too. (Assuming you can live with the sparce midi editing features. - Which is all I used to used in Cubase on the Atari anyway.)

VST instrument support has not yet been implemented, but has been promised as an update before the end of the year. Oh yes, you get a lovely white dongle for your parallel port too.. bleh! :/

Although Steinberg currently pitch Nuendo as audio + midi and Cubase as their midi + audio solution, there is a fair amount of overlap between the two programs. It certainly wouldn't be hard for them to add the extra midi functionality of VST to Nuendo in the next 9 months or so. And this may well have been the plan all a long. It certainly makes good sense.

It's well known that VST for the PC is a port from the Atari to the Mac, and from the Mac to the PC. A 2nd generation port...to any computer programmer, that immediately raises red flags with regard to reliability. A look at the posts in the Cubase.net user forums shows a continual pattern of strange inconsistant bugs and errors that appear for no apparent reason. Just what one would expect from a port of a port! In otherwords, the Cubase code is cack and needs a complete rewrite in native PC code. Funny, that's practically what Nuendo is, except for a few MIDI features.

It takes a lot of work to write a program like Cubase from scratch, so why not devlop the audio engine first (the weakest part of Cubase) and release it as a new product (get some money coming in to offset R&D costs), then add the MIDI functionality piece by piece and phase out the older less reliable product. It's a smart plan, and the fact that they've already announced adding VST instrument compatibility to Nuendo suggests to me that they're moving in this direction. (What on earth would an audio post production house do with a VST instrument?)

It would be very easy to have an all singing, all dancing Nuendo as their audio and midi solution, and then disable functionality to create Cubasis like products. Also, it allows them to raise the price - Nuendo sells for $1000 in the US. Cubase's price has been pretty stable throughout it's lifetime. This way instead of pissing everyone off by suddenly charging $1000 for the next Cubase release, they just phase it out and say, here's a new product, and here's the higher price for the new product.

It all fits together so neatly into the big picture, it's hard to presume this wasn't the master plan all along.

So, here's the replacement for Cubase - it's been under everyone's nose for the past 6 months and no one really noticed.

Anyway back to the rest of the review! ;)

In summary:

Nuendo is surprisingly stable. I'd say it ranks up there with Sonic Foundry software for stability. There are one or two tiny bugs (more like quirks), but nothing that stops you getting your work done, and they've never crashed the program yet. For a v1.0, it performs very well. This is no beta version trying to pass as a final release.

I've had no problems mixing a 40 channel project (avg 16 playing) with Waves directX plugins, all on an IBM ThinkPad Pentium II 366mhz.

In all, I can't really find any significant faults. It's pricey, but it works. I guess that's the bottom line.

Good Points
Very stable. Familiar VST mixer for Cubase users.
Bad Points
Price
 

 Steinberg Nuendo Specifications:

Digital IOs:

Maximum Resolution:32 bit float
Hardware supported:
ASIO and windows multimedia

 Nuendo Links

Studio using Nuendo Audio Production Studio
audioMIDI.com Review by Brent Hoover “Make More Music”
Live Studio Drums Forget stiff MIDI drum tracks and trying to be a drummer! Bring your projects and demos to the professional level with real acoustic drum tracks!
Smart Loops Great sounding drum loops, percussion loops, bass loops and guitar loops.

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