The Most Popular Digital Audio Workstations In the World…

These are the ten biggest Digital Audio Workstations (DAWs), based on recent internet search and social engagement activity.  Compiled by Digital Music Doctor during the first three months of 2014.


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64 Responses

    • Bruce Burbank

      I think you and I might be in the minority, Dave. Someday people might catch on as to how kick ass Studio One is. But until then, screw ’em. It’ll be our little secret.

      • Anonymous

        I am also a diehard fan of Studio One as the best DAW, it’s surprising it’s not in the chart

        • Joshua Hall

          Presonus Studio ONE. Hands down – from start to finished master. One platform. Easy, Powerful.

          • Hoodgrown

            I had never even heard of Studio One. Thanks for putting me up on it.

          • Janus

            There’s also something called Zynewave Podium Free.
            I myself Studio One Free

          • fellybacca

            Inspired me to install the disc that came with my audio interface.

    • mdti

      studio one too.

      But I think a majority of studio one users are switcher from cubase who were fed up with window management and the absence of modern features.

    • mike

      studio one has issues. one being the fact that vsts arent usable in the lower versions of the program…..

      if a daw doesnt have 3rd party access its a turd

  1. stanley Gasa

    Yeah I say Fl studio is number one too and it is well known

  2. VILE1985

    FL has always been my favorite with Ableton being a close second. I’m pretty sure that all trends I predict to be correct will be, as they always have been, because my mind and the global mind are evolving at the same rate.

  3. Anonymous

    Would love to know what the most popular IOS/Mobile DAWs are….

  4. i'm Clever Artist Name

    I use Reason, with Ableton as my 2nd daw. Ableton is my live performance production go to, but Reason is where I make all of my music.

  5. a real industry pro

    This is purely based on EASE of use and loops, nothing spells LOOPSTER than some dude with the name Digital Music Doctor and FL studio…that should be the first hint, this all looks like ease of use and that any dude with a computer can make noise, illegally downloaded. but professional DAW as I for pros? not on this list.

    • Mymonkey

      Loads of famous producers use FL studio, just because it used to be called fruity loops doesn’t mean you only use loops lol have you ever made a song in fruity?

  6. Level2 Muisic

    I think this pole on the most popular DAW is more accurate and you can’t just use one pole to determine popularity –…/the-16-best-daw-software…/16

  7. AudiopleXus mastering

    I use Sequoia 12 and Sadie 6……..not on the list and FL with cubase is the most downloaded DAW from pirate sites.

  8. Maurice Oliver

    How many actual producers, not loop collectors did you speak to?
    How many users were not making EDM tracks, but actual music productions with live [real] players involved?

  9. Weird

    Internet Popularity Chart? So FL Studio is like the Justin Bieber of DAWs

  10. Sean

    Cubase has always been my bomb diggity. It all depends on your application.

  11. Christopher

    Logic is last because it’s only available on Apple computers. If you polled Apple users only, I bet it would be #1.

  12. There is something...

    What would be really interesting is to know the ratio of paid downloads vs cracked versions for each of these search…

  13. Michael

    Its like a list of most popular easiest software to download illegally utill it hits protools.

  14. Record Producer

    Really? Paul, I seriously question your credibility! Internet popularity vs. professional DAW preference/”popularity” are indeed two entirely different things. Learn to do some research and perhaps some real world interviews.

  15. Kord Taylor

    This is based on seach and social and has very little long-term data. I think it’s an okay indicator of “DAWs with folks interested in or having problems with a brand”

  16. KevinC

    Hmm…old article,already posted here in the past so the results not relevant anymore.

    Most popular DAW based on search = most pirated DAW. Nuf said.

  17. David

    If you went to 90% of professional recording studios you’d find ProTools, Logic or both.

    • mdti

      It is because of some “‘pro” in a studio that I had to swtch from Logic to Cubase.

      They recognized their big mistake years after. “pro studios” my ass.

  18. Domenico

    I use Zynewave Podium Free, the most complete and usefull free daw in the whole universe.

    • Janus

      I tried tat before going to Presonus.
      It gave me trouble setting up an initial song file for some reason and so I went to Presonus

  19. johnwayne

    I loved fl for the time I used it never even bothered looking to anything else then my friend who uses studio one recommended it so I tried it out and it was amazing! But now I’ve been using ableton for about a year and it is honestly my favorite DAW but its all personal preference I swear by ableton now haha

  20. Daniel Figueiredo

    ok, can be, but … Presonus STUDIO ONE is the BEST DAW today !!

  21. Gonzalo


    The kick ass deal is: Pro Tools with Ableton Live (Rewire) .PERDIOD.

    • Tony D

      Yeah – Bitwig wasn’t released until March, but it’ll be interesting to see where it shows up next year.. Checked out the demo, it’s like they took the best from Ableton and FL Studio and added new things. Still work to be done for them, but one major update, and Bitwig will be a favorite of many producers fo’ sho.

  22. whatevs

    internet search & social engagement activity? social engagement & internet search means lots of kiddies in basements who have cracked copies, dabbling & then sharing crap tracks on the net.

    kim kardashian would rank high on internet search / social engagement if i searched ‘favorite celebrity’ but it doesn’t mean she’s good at anything.

    how about interviewing ‘professional’ (i.e. make a living at it, have album credits, sales, whatever, & not just EDM)

    ps not a diss on FL, just the ‘research’ so don’t bother flaming

  23. Matt

    These charts are completely inaccurate and do not reflect the reality of us DAW users worldwide. The method the extracted this ‘information’ is bogus.

  24. mdti

    The Maschine entry is pretty impressive.

    This and fruity loops show that it is more in a composer point of view rather than recording point of view.

  25. Saint Heretic

    Sequoia 12 for the absolute best sound from idea to mastering it shits on everything alse, i also use soundforge pro 11 for sampling,cutting stuff up, and for cleaning stuff up, this combo is hands down the very best!!!!!!!

  26. MAX

    The New Bitwig studio will climb the chart very fast !
    Is a mix Between Cubase and Live

  27. J

    I hope as everyone talks about their prowess and fruitful favor over one system to the next, that you have all realized that this chart is comparatively based on no information regarding sales, registration, or any other accountable information to suggest correlation between the number of actual users of these software platforms, and the “internet search and and social engagement” figures posted. What ever the hell those numbers point towards…

    Thanks for the time waste.

  28. flipside

    Well the truth is more big name producers are probably using logic and ableton. …but as far as up and coming newbies fl studio is by far the most used….im not saying it’s the best or worst but the easily the most used….pirated copies alone….so when I see all these online schools like point blank teaching everything on every daw except fl studio I laugh at their huge loss of revenue ….

  29. Jon

    I think it depends on how you work and what you use the DAW for. If you have Avid hardware and PCI cards then pro tools is best for recording audio. If you’re mastering audio, studio one and pro tools are awesome. If you’re composing for film, then MOTU DP 8 is awesome. If you’re doing video game music or writing minimalist music or dance music, then fl studio and live are outstanding, and Maschine too. I prefer MOTU DP for overall performance, but I love what Live can do.

  30. kevin

    Yeee FL is #1!! haha

    surprising to see that logic is so low on this chart..

  31. John Noise

    I personally hate FL Studio because it just doesn’t work for me. Ableton Live is simple and very clever and a joy to work with my Launchpad. I loved Logic Pro due to the professional standard in the final mixdown thanks to the amazing plug-ins. But then, this little pearl called Studio One came out of nowhere, and overshadowed all the other DAW’s with it’s beauty and lightning-fast workflow, Thor’s-hammer power and ground-low price tag.

  32. Marzion

    Cubase 8 Pro is a powerhouse and it becomes more powerful with each release.
    My Second would be Logic X Pro followed by ProTools.

  33. JPIRES

    I think that Fl Studio is most popular cuz it is cheap and ease to use.
    For me Sonar is a lot better then FL Studio, but for first time user it look very intimidating,
    you should give Sonar a try and you will see what i am talking about.
    Cakewalk will let you download a trial good for 30 days with full functionality.

  34. Jon Doe

    NO no No! The best daw ever is Jeskola Buzz! The best part is it’s 100% freeware 😀