Propellerhead Software has just announced that they will be releasing Reason 6, Reason Essentials and a new hardware interfaced called Propellerhead Balance on September 30. Record is being absorbed into Reason 6 with this release and will no longer be a stand-alone application. “All of Record's functionality will live on in Reason Essentials and Reason 6.” This will also be the first 64-bit version of the program as well.
“We're uniting the rack in Reason 6, bringing over all the features from Record - audio recording, the Neptune pitch corrector/voice synth, the large format mixer with our classic modeled EQ and dynamics on every channel, and the oh so lovely Master Bus Compressor. In addition, however, we're adding three new rack devices which share a common goal: creative use of effects.”
With every successive generation of Reason, Propellerhead Software always seems to outdo themselves when it comes to adding new features. This version of Reason is no different as there will be no less than three new rack devices.
The first one is called Echo, an advanced stereo echo module. Echo will allow you to “bringing together the brilliance of modern delays with the organic sounds of analog circuitry and old-school tape machines.” Pulveriser is the next new rack module. It brings a whole new level of crunchy compression and dirty distortion to Reason in one convenient package. The third new rack device is called Alligator and it is a “three band pattern-based gate effect that turns bland pads into rhythmic textures, radically twists your loops, and tweak boring beats into blockrocking breaks.”
Balance is Propellerhead Software’s first dedicated hardware interface for Reason. Previous versions of Reason were well-known for playing nicely with third party gear, but with this latest update, Reason decided to give users something a little more homegrown. Balance is a 2X2 audio interface that lets you plug in just about any kind of instruments into its Hi-end pre-amplifiers. It records in 24-bit ADC/DACs from 44.1 to 96kHz. It’s been designed to have very low latency, so you won’t have to worry about any annoying delays when recording with headphones. Propellerhead also wants this device to be as user friendly as possible, giving musicians the freedom to concentrate on their music instead of having to worry about the technical aspects of the hardware and software. Everything just works well together.
If you’ve ever used Reason Adapted then you know that it’s basically Propellerhead’s LE version of the software. Reason Essentials is a step up from Adapted, but it is still a limited version of Reason that doesn’t include as many capabilities as it’s big brother. The most important aspects of Reason are well represented, but with a more limited palette of instruments and effects to choose from. It’s really just designed for users who want to focus on the basics of Reason without all of the bells and whistles of the full version.
Reason 6 will cost $449 and Reason Essentials will sell for $299. If you’re upgrading from a previous version, then it will cost you $169. You can find more information regarding upgrades here. Reason has yet to release pricing for Balance. I look forward to testing Reason 6 when it comes out in the fall. It’s always been a reliable tool for creating great music and I’m sure this version will be no different.