PreSonus has introduced Studio One 4 Prime, an updated version of their free digital audio workstation based on the flagship Studio One music production software.
I often recommend Studio One Prime as one of the best free music production platforms for beginners. Its biggest drawback is that the free version of the software can’t load VST or AU plugins (you’ll need Studio One Artist with a paid add-on or Studio One Pro for that).
On the other hand, Studio One Prime’s selection of built-in effects, its intuitive user interface, and a hassle-free recording workflow, make it a perfect fit for recording demo songs and learning the basics of mixing.
Studio One 4 Prime introduces several improvements which were also added to the Artist and Pro editions of the software in the latest update. These include an improved instrument editing workflow with a dedicated drum editor, the introduction of drum and melodic patterns, along with support for MP3 encoding when rendering a project and MP3 encoding when importing audio files.
The new drum editor makes MIDI drum programming more intuitive, substituting note events with “drum hit” events which are easier to visualize in a rhythmic context. As for the addition of MP3 rendering, it’s a welcome improvement for users who want to share their finished tracks online as quickly as possible.
As before, Studio One 4 Prime includes a set of nine high-quality effects (channel strip, distortion, delay, phaser, etc.) and comes with over 1 GB of sample and loop content to help new users get started. If that’s not enough and you absolutely need VST plugin support, check out the Artist (separately paid add-on required for VST/AU plugin and Rewire Support) and Pro versions of Studio One or consider some of the popular freeware options like SONAR Platinum or Tracktion 6.
Please note that Studio One 4 Prime is only compatible with 64-bit operating systems.
Studio One 4 Prime is available for free download via PreSonus (135 MB download size, EXE installer, 64-bit software for Windows & macOS).