Cubase vs. Sibelius

Overview
ProductRatingMost Used ByProduct SummaryStarting Price
Cubase
Score 9.3 out of 10
N/A
Steinberg Media Technologies headquartered in Hamburg offers Cubase, a digital audio workstation and audio editing application.
$579.90
Sibelius
Score 6.7 out of 10
N/A
Avid offers Sibelius, a musical notation, creation, and publishing application.N/A
Pricing
CubaseSibelius
Editions & Modules
Starting Price
$579.90
No answers on this topic
Offerings
Pricing Offerings
CubaseSibelius
Free Trial
NoNo
Free/Freemium Version
NoNo
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
NoNo
Entry-level Setup FeeNo setup feeNo setup fee
Additional Details
More Pricing Information
Best Alternatives
CubaseSibelius
Small Businesses
Descript
Descript
Score 9.2 out of 10
Descript
Descript
Score 9.2 out of 10
Medium-sized Companies
Audition
Audition
Score 9.0 out of 10
Audition
Audition
Score 9.0 out of 10
Enterprises
Audition
Audition
Score 9.0 out of 10
Audition
Audition
Score 9.0 out of 10
All AlternativesView all alternativesView all alternatives
User Ratings
CubaseSibelius
Likelihood to Recommend
8.5
(4 ratings)
9.0
(2 ratings)
Support Rating
10.0
(2 ratings)
7.4
(3 ratings)
User Testimonials
CubaseSibelius
Likelihood to Recommend
Steinberg Media Technologies
I have been a longtime fan of Cubase and would recommend it to anyone, whether they are just starting in recording or a seasoned professional. I find that it is really strong in the pre-production and production phases of a song. Tools like the arranger track, track versions, and the chord track make writing and experimenting very easy. I have used these tools on almost every song that I have started from the writing phase. I am able to experiment with different variations of a song, different channel settings, and even completely different arrangements all with just a few clicks. My writing process and speed have improved so much over the last few versions of Cubase. We have also enjoyed working with the mixing process. The mixers in Cubase are laid out much like a regular console. So for an old timer like me, the learning curve is very low. Cubase did a very good job with layout and labeling. Things are labeled what you would expect them to be and laid out in an order that makes sense. The other part of the mixer that makes it great is the ability to color code and organize tracks. My mix time has drastically decreased since using Cubase.
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Avid Technology
It is simply easy to use and serves the function that it needs to serve. Once you get the hang of the basic functionality and a few of the keyboard shortcuts, it will be extremely easy and quick to write out music. The option to go back and transpose to another key without writing the whole thing out again is crucial.
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Pros
Steinberg Media Technologies
  • The user interface is very accessible and easy to operate
  • Cubase will run fine on most PCs with regular hardware
  • VSTs are easy to manage and install
  • Audio routing within the mixer is very simple
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Avid Technology
  • User Friendly
  • Compatible with other software/music programs
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Cons
Steinberg Media Technologies
  • Some documentation is confusing and may be different than the version you have
  • Finding how to set up more complex audio environments can be cumbersome
  • Audio library can be a little confusing
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Avid Technology
  • Barrier to entry could be a bit lower.
  • Options for types of arrangements are somewhat limited and the interface is a bit convoluted.
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Support Rating
Steinberg Media Technologies
Any time I've had to reach out to customer support, they've been fast to respond and answered my questions to the best of their ability. Authorization of the software is easy, and the company is great about emailing you promptly. Overall, they do a great job.
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Avid Technology
Once Sibelius is purchased, the user is given one year of unlimited free customer service to help in using the product. After that first year, users can either pay to utilize customer service with questions or use online helps, which are very helpful. One of the bigger issues I had was getting the sounds to work properly because my Internet connection wasn't consistently working well enough to accommodate the large files, which were taking up to 10 hours to download. The download would fail, and then I'd have to start over. I wanted to get a CD sent to me but was told this would be very costly, and so I declined. I wasn't happy with the lack of customer service in that situation but was eventually able to get the files to download and the software working properly.
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Alternatives Considered
Steinberg Media Technologies
We chose Cubase in the beginning due to price differences between Pro Tools and Cubase. As we learned to use Cubase, we realized the flexibility between MIDI and audio was far more advanced than any other product on the market. We still feel like the MIDI implementation in Cubase is beyond any other product on the market. We have also found that the audio engine alone is on par with all of the industry standard software. During the 18 years we have used Cubase, we have noticed more and more high-end mixing, mastering and production studios using Cubase in their workflows.
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Avid Technology
I have not used Finale exclusively, but I know friends/colleagues who have. In the past, it was complicated to transfer and edit any of the music they created for me because it would not transfer to Sibelius. As a result, I would have to request the edits I wanted and ask them to make the changes themselves. If I wanted to make any changes later, it was extremely inconvenient to do so, and I often chose not to, as I did not want to bother anyone other than myself to do any edits after-the-fact. Though it is now possible to transfer Finale files to Sibelius through creating .xml files and then importing as .sib files, the files still do not entirely retain all of the integrity of the original composition (as completed in Finale). Sometimes text and markings are missing, microscopic, or shifted once opened in Sibelius. Text fonts must often be edited. When working with other major music publishers, it has been extremely convenient and helpful to have the same software.
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Return on Investment
Steinberg Media Technologies
  • Using Cubase over something like Protools means that new users are more likely to be successful during training and due to this, decrease training time.
  • More trained staff means that we are able to complete more projects faster instead of waiting for a more skilled staff member to become available.
  • Implementation on-site for on-site recording has been very reliable and has decreased the amount of failed recordings during events.
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Avid Technology
  • Digital files are easily distributed to customers/no shipping costs.
  • Collaboration with other sheet music retailers has been established and maintained.
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