Presonus Studio One 3 Review [For Professionals]

Presonus Studio One 3

Convenient, Easy To Learn, Hard To Be Professional With

As veteran DAW users, we probably want these three things in our software and hardware.

  1. stability,
  2. intuitiveness, and…
  3. expansiveness.

Presonus Studio One 3 is probably not your first choice in this matter.

But if you’re just a newcomer wanting something useful, this is the DAW for you.


Presonus 3.0Studio One 3 uses a powerful audio engine that has 64-bit architecture. This is particularly useful for large projects, common for most Studio One 3 users.

The best part is its file browser.

It sits in an area that would be intuitive for users.

Traditional DAWs require you to press shortcut keys to open new files or you need to open an external browser to get your files inside the DAW.

For Presonus, a stay-on-top browser allows you to access all your music loops and drag them to different locations.

This quickly becomes second nature, which could be part of your composition workflow.

If you’re creating loops, you could save them and include all the automation and equalization from your work.

You could then access them using the file browser and drag them to create new arrangements and more.

Some Powerful Stuff

Presonus Studio One 3 allows it to create powerful, realistically-sampled instruments, which from where I tested, were definitely worth the hype from my pro-Presonus Studio One friends.


Mai Tai, for example, is a great plugin that is quite useful for creating bass sounds and doing some electronic music.

The Studio One engine allows it to change its base character, essentially transforming it to create unique timbres.

I’ve actually re-created a Moog-sounding synthesizer in one experiment.

You also have complete LFO controls, which would remind you of why analog synths back in the day were so awesome.

Presence XT

This is possible with Presence XT, which offers disk streaming for large samples, articulation key-switching, scripting and custom controls.

The large samples part, yep, you get it why Mai Tai and the other plugins are quite awesome.

The only downside is that the plugins are visually unappealing.

If you’ve seen independently-made plugins, they were designed to look better and become intuitive.

With Presonus’ basic set, it looks like you’re working with some bricks.

But again, the sound payoff is awesome.

Upon Using

Studio One MixerThe color scheme and interface design is something intuitive, like the file browser we mentioned.

The color-scheme is also helpful if you’re using the DAW live and during performance.

The arrangement window is useful to build and rearrange your songs.

Move entire song sections with drag-and-drop.

Use the Track Inspector to find sections of the song that you need.

Also, Studio One can now record multi-channel tracks.

You could even use it for surround mixing if you want to, which is why it rose to the top 5 favorite DAWs of 2014.

Final Words.

What Presonus Studio One 3 lacks in appearance and beauty it makes up for some great personality and usability.

With a pretty fire-on file browser that comes in handy at your left side, to the great quality of plugins, albeit their limiting controls, it’s quite great.

But as a pro, I still find it limiting, but that’s just me being hard to be professional with certain DAWs.

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