Reason is a popular music software program developed by Swedish software developers Propellerhead Software. It emulates a rack of hardware synthesizers, samplers, signal processors, sequencers and mixers. Reason can be used either as a complete virtual music studio, or as a collection of virtual instruments to be played live or used with other sequencing software.
The program's name was taken from a device used in Neal Stephenson's science fiction novel Snow Crash. Early in development it was known as Realizer (after the PPG Realizer).
Reason 1.0 was released in November 2000. The program's design mimics a studio rack into which users can insert virtual devices such as instruments, effects processors and mixers. These modules can be controlled from Reason's built-in MIDI sequencer or from other sequencing applications such as Pro Tools, Logic, Digital Performer, Cubase, Sonar and GarageBand via Propellerhead's ReWire protocol.
As of version 4.0, modules available include:
* Subtractor: a subtractive synthesizer
* Malström: a graintable synthesizer
* NN-19: a standard digital sampler, which loads pre-recorded instrumental and vocal sounds
* NN-XT: an advanced digital sampler, which features the option of tweaking the various modulation, oscillation and filter parameters of a preloaded sample or patch
* Dr Rex: a loop playback device, which slices prerecorded samples into manageable, bitesize units
* Redrum: a drum machine with a 64-step pattern sequencer, allowing for playback of the library of pre-recorded drum and effects samples.
* Thor: a semi-modular, polyphonic synthesizer that features, among others, wavetable, FM and phase modulation synthesis that can be routed through various types of filter modules.
Sounds from these devices can be routed via either of two mixing devices, or simple merging and splitting utilities. Effects include distortion, reverb, chorus, a vocoder and mastering effects. The Combinator device, introduced in version 3.0, allows users to combine multiple modules into one. Another device connects Reason to Propellerhead's (now discontinued) ReBirth.
Reason's interface includes a Toggle Rack command, which flips the rack around to display the devices from the rear. Here the user can route virtual audio and control cables from one piece of equipment to another in an almost unlimited number of ways. This cable layout enables the creation of complex effects chains and allows devices to modulate one another in creative ways.
Reason cannot record audio into Reason itself (i.e. it's not a full DAW). It also does not support VST and other third-party plug-ins.
A stripped-down version of Reason known as Reason Adapted is packaged as bonus software with other audio software such as Pro Tools LE. It restricts the user to a limited number of devices.
Reason 4 was released on September 26, 2007. Improvements to Reason include Thor, a modular synth; RPG-8, a real-time programmable arpeggiator; ReGroove, a detimer/dequantizer; and a complete change to Reason's sequencer that includes tempo and meter changes as well as support for complex meters. Also included is vector automation (in-track automation/envelope curves), a new pattern lane for editing patterns in arrange view, foldable tracks (mimicking Logic's folder functionality), beat/bar count-in, and support for multiple takes.
*** Official ReFills ***
Propellerhead Software have released the following ReFills for Reason:
* Reason Strings
* ElectroMechanical - Available as a free download or relatively cheap CD to registered users of Reason 3.0 or later. Features the following keyboards:
o Fender Rhodes Mk I Stage 73
o Fender Rhodes Mk II Stage 73
o Wurlitzer EP100
o Wurlitzer EP200
o Hammond Organ Model A
o Hohner Clavinet D6
o Hohner Pianet T
* Reason Drum Kits
* Reason Pianos - Features the following pianos:
o Yamaha C7 grand piano
o Steinway D grand piano
o Steinway K upright piano
* The Reggaeton Refill
* Jason McGerr Sessions - Featuring drumming by Jason McGerr of Death Cab for Cutie.
* Abbey Road Keyboards - Recorded at Abbey Road Studios. Features the following instruments:
o Steinway upright piano
o Challen Studio piano
o Hammond RT-3
o Mannborg Harmonium
o Schiedmayer Celeste
o Mellotron M400
o Premier Tubular Bells
* Reason Electric Bass - Features the following electric bass guitars, played by Sven Lindvall and recorded by Niklas Flyckt:
o Fender Jazz Bass
o Fender Precision Bass
o Fender Precision Bass played with a pick
o Gibson EB-0
o Gibson Les Paul
o Kay Hollowbody
o Music Man StingRay 5
o Rickenbacker 4001
*** ReCycle vs Hard Work ***
Sampled loops, grooves and breakbeats are powerful sonic building blocks. But if you want to be the master of those loops, and truly make them your own, you need a piece of software capable of more than just simple timestretching and tempo-fitting. Well, you've found it. From Propellerhead Software comes a suite of programs that gives you full creative loop control!Welcome to ReCycle 2.1 - The Ultimate Toolkit for Sampled Grooves.
What does ReCycle do?
ReCycle goes way beyond simply solving groove problems and cleaning up your loop act - it's a highly creative tool that helps you make the most of your grooves. In simple terms, ReCycle lets you do with sampled loops what you can do with beats programmed from individual drum sounds - like alter the tempo, or replace sounds and process them individually.
ReCycle turns concrete-rigid loops into musical modeling clay, allowing you, the loopist, to do pretty much what you desire.
For a video overview of ReCycle, have a look at the ReCycle product clip to the right, where our product specialist James Bernard will guide you through the program.
*** Reload ***
Reload is a utility program for Mac OS X and Windows XP that allows Reason and ReCycle users to load Akai S1000//S3000 sound disks. Reload is also useful for anyone importing WAV files. Utilizing a very simple elegant interface, Reload makes one of the world's largest sound libraries available to Reason and Recycle.
Specific features include: Load complete Akai programs andsamples, including full keyboard mapping and parameters, into the NN-XT. Load Akai samples into the NN-19 and Redrum, including looping. Load samples into ReCycle, including loopingparameters.
Reload is part of an effort by Propellerheads to provide added value for registered owners of Reason. Previously, they offered the very popular Refill packer utility and 100 Megs of free sounds in collaboration with Primesounds . Propellerheads will continue this program to reward their registered users and continue to add value to their product.
Reload is be a free download for registered Propellerhead users and is $49 for unregistered users.