What DAW Does Kanye Use? - Musician Wave (2023)

What DAW Does Kanye Use? - Musician Wave (1)

Kanye West often does not use a DAW when making music. He uses hardware for sampling, writing, and adding beats. However, he and his team have been seen using both Pro Tools and FL Studio for recording.

“I don’t use a computer or a lot of equipment in my studio.” These words were spoken by Kanye in an old interview.

Kanye is not a fan of computers or DAWs. He likes to keep his simple old-school way of following the analog-style music production. Furthermore, for the production of some older tracks, he only used a sampling keyboard. After all, Kanye started producing music well before DAWs were as ubiquitous as they are today.

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The footage from “The MC: Why We Do It: A Hip-Hop Documentary” shows a great moment when Kanye shows his skills creating a song with his sampling keyboard adding beats, and enjoying it. It is from the real production process of the song “Higher” by Do Or Die and Kanye West.

Kanye Prefers Making Music With Hardware

West learned music production in the mid-1990s when DAWs were around for a while but still were not that popular. That is why he prefers keeping things less digital and walking on the way he is familiar with. He likes to chop and use samples, especially from the 70’s soul, to create his tracks on which he can rap.

In the book “Kanye West in the Studio: Beats Down! Money Up!” he talks about his process of building up a song: “I sample them at regular speed, then speed them up inside the ASR-10. I just put the pitch up on the sampler, and it will go faster. The ASR-10 is like my left hand. A lot of old songs are too slow to rap on. So I got to speed them up to a rappable tempo.”

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This is the so-called “Chipmunk Soul,” which is the hip-hop production style Kanye pioneered.

But of course, as time passed, he started using other gear for his production process. Besides the Ensoniq ASR-10 Keyboard, the hardware he used included Roland VS 1880 24-Bit Digital Audio Workstation, Gemini PT-1000 II Turntable, and Akai MPC2000 MIDI Production Center.

He Uses a DAW During the Recording Process

Like most musicians today, Kanye started using DAWs, at least for the recording phase of the production. Only after creating his tracks with the sampling keyboard, he processes them using Pro Tools. The aim here is to achieve the positive aspects the digital world brings, including the most important one, the maximum sound quality.

For example, for his debut studio album, “The College Dropout,” he sampled many different songs like “The Good The Bad The Ugly” by Dinah Washington and “Through The Fire” by Chaka Khan. He is really into 70’s soul music from which he creates his samples.

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He used his ASR-10 to sample the tracks, shift the pitch for making the songs faster and create his own beats. After all these processes, he used Pro Tools to record the tracks. So the DAW is actually there but not for production, just for recording.


Kanye West is not a big fan of creating everything “in the box” of a DAW. He prefers to use hardware, but like all types of music these days, a DAW is almost certainly used during the recording, mixing, and mastering process.

Kanye West – Featured Image by: Angel Laws from Jacksonville, USA, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons


What beatmaker does Kanye use? ›

While the world waits in agony for Kanye's latest album, the rapper is giving fans the opportunity to create their own musical masterpiece with his new product: the DONDA Stem Player.

What is better FL Studio or Pro Tools? ›

Ultimately, it comes down to your personal preferences and workflow. If you're just getting started in music production, FL Studio may be the better choice. But if you're looking for a program that offers more professional features, Pro Tools is worth considering.

What music software does Tyler the Creator use? ›

Everything I work on ends up in Pro Tools. But Tyler's a Logic Pro guy, so the creative process starts there. We did all our production in that environment, then imported the tracks to Pro Tools.

Is FL Studio good for music production? ›

FL Studio is used by many professionals in the music industry, and it is one of the most popular choices for music production. If you are looking for a high-quality and versatile digital audio recording system, then FL Studio is an excellent option.

What DAW does Taylor Swift use? ›

Even though hip hop permeates music around the globe, many other artists use this DAW to create their music. Taylor Swift, Björk, Brian Eno, Chris Martin of Coldplay, Shawn Mendes, and Ed Sheeran have all been known to use Logic Pro.

Why Ableton is better than FL Studio? ›

If you want a fast, clear and creative workflow, Ableton wins. While the device view might annoy some people who like bigger interfaces, the ability to bounce audio within tracks (Edison is mostly a nightmare in FL), saving things to racks and clips and using the session view for jamming, makes it worthwhile.

Do any big producers use FL Studio? ›

Image-Line also offers its own VST and AU instruments and audio applications. FL Studio has been used by numerous highly visible hip hop and EDM producers, including Metro Boomin, Porter Robinson, Alan Walker, Madeon, Soulja Boy, Southside, Martin Garrix, Avicii, Imanbek, Lex Luger and Deadmau5.

Do studios still use Pro Tools? ›

Yep, it's Pro Tools. There are many DAWs that offer far more features, free updates, are more stable, but walk into 99% of professional studios around the world and you'll still find Pro Tools - this is the same in both music and post.

Do most artists use FL Studio? ›

Yes, many professional musicians and producers use FL Studio to produce their music. From Hip Hop legends to EDM DJs, Classical composers, and everything in-between. The software has been used to produce songs/tracks from artists such as Katy Perry, Rihanna, David Guetta, Tiesto, and many more!

Which pros use FL Studio? ›

Artists such as Tyler, The Creator, Skrillex, and the late Avicii have all stated FL Studio as crucial during the beginning stages of their production journeys. For many, FL Studio is not just a stepping stone into production, it is a way of life.

What software does Childish Gambino use? ›

GForce Software Minimonsta

In the verified artists section on Rap Genius, one of the main producers, Ludwig Göransson, discussed Childish Gambino's use of the Minimonsta plugin.

What software does Pierre use? ›

So, what DAW does Pierre use? He started with FL Studio DAW to create his awesome beats. Then, Pierre began to use Ableton DAW to create his wavy melodies. Last but not least, he uses Pro Tools for mixing complex sounds.

Which DAW is industry standard? ›

Pro Tools. If you want the industry-standard DAW, get Pro Tools. It's a solid option for those who want to go into professional studio environments and especially those who are into mixing and mastering.

Is FL Studio bad for mixing vocals? ›

Is FL Studio Good for Recording Vocals? The short answer: Yes. Yes it is.

Which DAW is best for techno? ›

The Most Popular DAWs for Techno Music Production: Ableton Live, Bitwig, and Logic Pro X.

What DAW did Billie Eilish use? ›

As for the DAWs used, Billie prefers using Apple's Logic Pro X as her digital audio workstation software for producing music. Logix Pro X is another big hitter in the pop music production industry.

What is the DAW that Ed Sheeran use? ›

Ed Sheeran's Chewie II pedalboard controls a VST looper plugin called Mobius 2. Mobius 2 is a free looper plugin you can use with a DAW. Ed Sheeran uses Ableton Live as his DAW to host this plugin.

What DAW does Mariah Carey use? ›

Schaffer-Vega Diversity System.

Do professionals use Ableton? ›

Answer: For many professional musicians and DJs, Ableton is the industry standard for musicians that play live. Ableton Live is the DAW of choice for many of the world's best DJs and producers.

Why do so many producers use Ableton? ›

And that's why we EDM producers love this DAW. If you want to create sounds that are new and different - sounds that no one has heard before, then Ableton is the DAW of choice. This DAW actually makes it easier for us, not more complicated, because it's very intuitive.

Does FL Studio sound better than logic? ›

The short answer is yes, FL Studio allows creating music faster than Logic Pro X, thanks to a sleek interface and loop automation that make it the ideal DAW for most kinds of electro music.

Does Travis use FL Studio? ›

So, what DAW does Travis Scott use? He, basically, uses three DAWs: FL Studio 11, Pro Tools, and Logic Pro X.

Is FL Studio good for mastering? ›

What's great about FL Studio is that you can save different Mixer states, and re-use them in other songs. So, for example, let's say you're mixing a whole album and want to apply the same mastering settings across the album, then you can use this technique.

Which is better FL Studio Producer or signature? ›

Video Capabilities: Signature Edition wins. Sonic Capabilities: Signature Edition wins hands down. Price: Producer Edition is cheaper. But the Signature edition offers more value.

Which DAW is closest to Pro Tools? ›

Top 10 Alternatives to Avid Pro Tools
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  • Adobe Audition.
  • Ableton Live.
  • Logic Pro X.
  • FL Studio.
  • Studio One.
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  • Ardour.

Does Drake use Pro Tools? ›

Pro Tools, Ableton Live, and Cubase form huge parts of his signature sound. Add to the mix his Maschine, and you got yourself a professional DAW set-up that won Drake four Grammys…and counting!

What software do most recording studios use? ›

Pro Tools is the current industry standard, in modern recording studios. It essentially packs all the functions of recording, editing, signal processing, and mixing into one highly versatile computer program.

What are the cons of FL Studio? ›

FL Studio has a confusing routing, for example to use return tracks for reverbs, you will have to click numerous buttons to get that done. FL Studio has a somewhat steep learning curve, which can demotivate beginners. FL Studio's auto-saving feature is a bit late, which can ruin your project if you rely on it.

Why do rappers use FL Studio? ›

It allows you to loop and arrange drums, instruments, and samples quickly, making it much easier to build a full beat. And considering that hip-hop music is based around loops and patterned arrangement, this makes FL Studio an ideal choice.

Is there anything easier than FL Studio? ›


The interface, while not as elegant and pretty as FL studio, is intuitive and simple to use, even for newbies, and so is great for getting started in music production. It has 16-bit, 24-bit, and 32-bit support is available for Windows, macOS, and Linux, and supports a multitude of audio effect plug-ins.

What music software did Kanye use? ›

Kanye West uses a DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) called Pro Tools. Kanye is known to mostly produce music using hardware instruments for sampling and beats, though uses Pro Tools as a DAW to record these sounds. His team have also been seen using FL Studio.

What music production software does Dr Dre use? ›

Akai MPC 3000

Dre says "I love using the MPC3000. I like setting up like four or five different MPC3000's, so I don't have to keep changing disks. So I have them all lined up, and I have different drum sounds in each one, and then we use one for sequencing th...

What music production software does Frank Ocean use? ›

The DAW software that Frank Ocean uses is highly likely to be Pro Tools. This is a reasonable conclusion when you compare Frank Ocean's sound to other artists, for example, EDEN. Pro Tools is widely known to be the DAW of choice for EDEN.

What software does Kenny beats use? ›

Kenny's production style varies. His digital audio workstation (DAW) of choice is Ableton Live. He plays piano, bass guitar, electric guitar & drums and often implements live instrumentation into his instrumentals, whether it performed by him or from a fellow instrumentalist.

What software did Skrillex use? ›

Just like most top producers, Skrillex doesn't just use one DAW. It's a more complex setup than the average listener would expect it to be. However, his main choice of software is Ableton's Live.

Does Metro Boomin use Ableton? ›

On Razer Music's website, Metro Boomin is listed as using Ableton Live.

Which DAW has the best sound quality? ›

The best DAWs of 2023 include:
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  • Steinberg Cubase Pro 12.
  • Tracktion Waveform Pro 12.
  • Bitwig Studio 4.
  • Reaper 6.
  • Reason Studios Reason 12.
  • Image Line FL Studio 21.
  • AVID Pro Tools.
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What is the most expensive DAW? ›

Pro Tools has been the leading DAW for decades, and they know it. That's why Pro Tools has also become the most expensive DAW. But because it is used almost exclusively by professionals who earn their living with it, these people are willing to spend more money than a hobby producer in a home studio.

Can you mix professionally on FL Studio? ›

Be assured, everything you need to make a professional sounding mix is provided with the stock FL Studio installation. The rest can be achieved with some practice and by trusting your ears. In this section we'll consider: Setting output mix levels.

Should you double all vocals? ›

Layering your lead vocal with doubles can add thickness, color and lift to the most important element of any song; the lyrics and melody. We explore numerous ways you can achieve that rich vocal sound in your mix.

What is the #1 DAW? ›

1. Ableton Live. An inspiring DAW with a next-level workflow.

What DAW do most EDM artists use? ›

Every EDM artist uses a DAW. The most popular DAWS at the moment are Ableton Live, Logic Pro and FL studio. In addition to DAW's EDM artists also use several plugins for these DAW's which are in essence emulations of existing instruments and analog audio effects.

What DAW do most EDM producers use? ›

FL Studio (Windows/Mac)

Image-Line FL Studio has been around for around 20 years now and is the DAW of choice for many electronic dance producers.

Who produced Kanye's beats? ›

15 Producers Who Work With Kanye West
  • Mike Dean. Mike Dean is a producer and engineer who is known as Kanye West's right-hand man for some of the most influential Ye albums of all time. ...
  • Boi 1-da. ...
  • Jon Brion. ...
  • Paul McCartney. ...
  • Travis Scott. ...
  • Che Pope. ...
  • Bink. ...
  • 88-Keys.
Dec 28, 2021

What beat maker do rappers use? ›

Q: What software do professional rappers use to make beats? While many professional rappers use software like Native Instruments Maschine, Ableton Live, and Apple Logic Pro to make beats, plenty of serious artists have also produced music using free software like Apple GarageBand.

Who made the beats for Donda? ›

West, BoogzDaBeast, Dem Jointz, Mike Dean, and Ojivolta primarily helmed its production.

What is Kanye's music platform? ›

The Stem Player is an audio remix device and music streaming platform developed by British technology company Kano Computing in collaboration with American artist Kanye West.
Stem Player.
Also known asYZY Stem Player
DeveloperKano Computing Kanye West
TypeDigital media player
Release date2021
Introductory priceUS$200
4 more rows

How Kanye makes his beats? ›

Nowadays he is also using a DAW to create his music. Today in the 21st Century it's just more convenient to also use digital tools and not only analog hardware to produce music. So after Kanye West creates his beats with his analog gear he is using the Digital Audio Workstation called Pro Tools for the processing.

What beats has Kanye West made? ›

But while we wait for the third part of the trilogy to drop, here's a list of my favourite tracks Kanye was involved in creating.
  • Drake – "Find Your Love" ...
  • Twista – "Overnight Celebrity" ...
  • Keyshia Cole – "I Changed My Mind" ...
  • Alicia Keys – "You Don't Know My Name" ...
  • Lil Wayne ft Babyface – "Comfortable" ...
  • Foxy Brown – "My Life"
Feb 26, 2022

Who produced Jay Z's beats? ›

He worked with several producers including Just Blaze, The Neptunes, Kanye West, Timbaland, Eminem, DJ Quik, 9th Wonder, The Buchanans, and Rick Rubin. Notable songs on the album included "What More Can I Say", "Dirt Off Your Shoulder", "Change Clothes", and "99 Problems".

What is the best DAW for rappers? ›

Best Dawfor Hip Hop
  1. FL Studio. Image-line's FL studio is hands-down, the best audio workstation out there. ...
  2. Logic Pro. Logic Pro is Apple's contribution to the world of Digital Audio Workstations. ...
  3. Cakewalk. ...
  4. Bitwig Studio. ...
  5. Steinberg Cubase. ...
  6. Acoustica. ...
  7. PreSonus. ...
  8. Mixcraft Pro Studio.
Jan 13, 2023

Who is the best beat maker ever? ›

So let us know how this list compares to yours!
  • No I.D. Classics:
  • The Alchemist. Classics: ...
  • Just Blaze. Classics: ...
  • Marley Marl. Classics: ...
  • Rick Rubin. Classics: LL Cool J – I Need A Beat. ...
  • Havoc. Classics: Mobb Deep – Shook Ones Pt: II. ...
  • Madlib. Classics: MadVillain – Accordion. ...
  • DJ Muggs. Classics: Cypress Hill – Insane In The Brain. ...
Feb 5, 2020

What does Kanye use for beats? ›

Kanye West uses a DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) called Pro Tools. Kanye is known to mostly produce music using hardware instruments for sampling and beats, though uses Pro Tools as a DAW to record these sounds. His team have also been seen using FL Studio.

How much did Kanye get paid for his beats? ›

Prior to The Blueprint, Kanye was selling beats for between $250 - $500. After he placed five beats on that album, his price skyrocketed to $30,000 per track. You really never know... Portfolio, portfolio, portfolio.

How much is Donda Academy? ›

It was founded in 2022 by American rapper Kanye West. Parents had to sign a non-disclosure agreement to keep the school's location secret and to say nothing about it; it charges $15,000 per student. Students wear blackshirt Balenciaga uniforms designed by West himself.

Does Kanye own Tidal? ›

According to Vox, Jay-Z owns 20% and Square has majority ownership of 80% of Tidal. Square made the purchase public information via its website in March of 2021. We explained more about it here.

Does Kanye have his own studio? ›

The spaces within Kanye West's Yeezy Studio in Calabasas by designer Willo Perron are as one might expect: austere, moody, enigmatic.

What studio is Kanye signed? ›

Def Jam Recordings


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