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Thread: Recommendations? Wave editor for mastering DJ mixes/edits

  1. #1
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    Recommendations? Wave editor for mastering DJ mixes/edits

    Hi,
    I'm getting back into making DJ mixes after a few years, and want to upgrade to better software for mastering the audio that comes out of my DJ software (Traktor Pro), into a polished mix: e.g. a .wav/flac file with a an accompanying .cue file. I've been CD Architect and Audacity. CDA is awesome for splicing together wav files, but it's not good for much else as I don't burn CDs anymore and it doesn't export .cue files. Audacity can do the job, but the UI is not as smooth as I'd like and it's so much work to get the final product after I've finished the mix it's putting me off making new mixes.

    I see this sub-forum is mainly about production, but I'm hoping someone can recommend a good affordable program that's focused on wave editing and mastering (simple recording would be a plus, but I take that for granted). I don't need a full-on DAW - in fact most of the ones I've seen are lacking in wave editing features. If I ever get into production, I'll get a different app for that.

    I envision my workflow being:
    1) record the mix in Traktor Pro, probably in two or three takes to re-do transitions that don't come out the way I wanted
    2) seamlessly splice together those wavs to get the mixes right
    3) splice out parts of tracks that go on for longer than I'd like (if needed); add fades, etc.
    4) add in extra samples, intro, outro, etc. on a 2nd or 3rd audio layer
    5) spot-adjust EQ; possibly tweak some effects
    6) chain on VST compressor and gain compensation pluings (I've been using LoudMax) to make the loudness consistent
    7) add track break indexes with artist and title information
    8) export the finished product to a .flac (or .wav) file plus .cue containing the metadata
    ...did I miss anything?

    The look and feel matters to me. As an example, I actually enjoy splicing/cross-fading audio in CDA, but I'd rather clean the bathroom than do the same in Audacity because you can't see the waveforms overlap, the fade envelopes are harder to manipulate, and undo is slow, and somehow not real-time.
    I don't want to spend more than $100 and subscriptions are a non-starter. Searching online tends to bring up lists that start with Audacity, then jump straight into production-oriented DAWs, and finally end in PR for Adobe Audition. But sifting through that I've found the following that look promising:

    WaveLab Elements
    Acoustica Standard
    Cockos Reaper
    WavePad
    Sound Forge Audio Studio *Can't tell if this supports VST pluings

    Any advice/experience appreciated!

    Edit: I'm using Windows 10.
    Last edited by FunkyB; 12-20-2018 at 07:36 PM.

  2. #2
    Supermod pea Manu's Avatar
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    I have been using Soundforge for over 10 years. I'm comfortable with it, the tools do the job and anything surgical down to a fraction of a millisecond is precise to a tee. I never used plugins on it though.

    I also use Wavemaster (Apple) for mastering and CD burning.

  3. #3
    Member DennisBdrmDJ 2.0's Avatar
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    I'll give "Wavepad" a positive vote. I don't use for production, I use it for editing my vinyl records that I digitize into Wav files. very helpful, very intuitive. they have a free trial version, and it's not very pricey.

  4. #4
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    After trying a few different software programs, I've decided to stick with my current workflow for now. For reference, here's what I found.
    Wavelab Elements:
    The closest to a replacement for CD Architect. It can make projects as Montages separate from directly editing the wav files, and the crossfading and volume envelope functions are very good. Unfortunately, in the end it can only export audio with no way to generate a .cue file or any kind of time index that can be converted into one. This makes it not worth the price for me, as even Audacity can do that with the help of a small Java app. The Pro version can do it, but it's much more expensive.

    SoundForge Audio Studio:
    Decent for doing crossfades and volume adjustments, but no Montage/project function so all editing is destructive and basically needs to be completed in one session. It does have options for exporting time indexes including .cue sheets, and the price is cheap. It does support VST plugins and could work as a wav editor in conjunction with CDA. I would consider getting this as a supplement, especially if you already have a DAW program, but it doesn't fully replace CDA.

  5. #5
    I second the use of both SoundForge & Wavelab : Both extremely well crafted and smooth workflow.

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