When comparing Photoshop vs Cakewalk by Bandlab (Sonar), the Slant community recommends Cakewalk by Bandlab (Sonar) for most people. In the question“What are the best DAWs with session view?” Cakewalk by Bandlab (Sonar) is ranked 4th while Photoshop is ranked 6th. The most important reason people chose Cakewalk by Bandlab (Sonar) is:
The Sonar DAW comes with a new and improved UI with extra focus on being customizable.
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Industry standard
Photoshop is used by professionals everywhere in a wide variety of fields including photography, graphic design and digital art. It is the de facto standard for image manipulation. If you've seen a magazine ad featuring a model, you've probably seen the effects of Photoshop. You won't be alone when using Photoshop.
Pro Trove of plugins that extend functionality are available
A wide variety of plugins that add new effects, improve existing functionality and simplify workflow are available.
Pro Lots of tutorials
There's a huge number of both free and paid tutorials available online. Websites like Lynda.com offer premium high-quality, in-depth tutorials, but there are plenty of free alternatives to be found on YouTube, blogs and specialized sites on the Internet.
Pro A cheaper, standalone version called Photoshop Elements is available
A stripped down version of Photoshop, called Photoshop Elements can be bought as a standalone application for $100.
Pro Includes powerful content-aware tools
Photoshop includes content-aware tools such as content-aware fill that can fill in a select area based on what surrounds it.
Pro Packs a staggering amount of functionality
Photoshop is the most fully featured image editing software available today allowing you to perform highly advanced image manipulation.
It has tools for RAW image adjustments, lens correction, retouching, image stitching, HDR, fixing framing. It supports most professional color modes and file formats. It includes extensive lists of filters, styles, effects, fonts as well as tools for painting, sketching and typography work. It understands both raster and vector graphics. It even includes tools for video editing, working with 3D objects and support for 3D printing.
Pro Integrates with Creative Cloud
You can save all projects directly to the Creative Cloud allowing you to access them from any device and with any relevant Adobe software.
Pro Creative Cloud Photography subscription includes Lightroom
Lightroom is another image editing software from Adobe that's specifically designed for photo editing and managing of large quantities of digital images.
Pro Highly customizable UI
The Sonar DAW comes with a new and improved UI with extra focus on being customizable.
Pro Great bundled instruments
Pro Powerful mixing including ProChannel
A Pro Channel ensures that you have all the necessary plugins in a really good mixing rack with console emulation for all busses and channels. This feels and sounds like a real mixing console.
Pro Highly flexible audio routing
In SONAR Platinum you can create an unlimited number of audio tracks, patch points, aux tracks and busses. Each track can send its output or an unlimited number of aux sends to any patch point or bus. A patch point can route to any number of aux tracks. Each aux track or bus can send its output or an unlimited number of sends to any other patch point or bus. (* A patch point is a destination where audio can be sent from any output or aux send, while an aux track is a track that receives its input from a patch point. This allows the track to be used similarly to a bus, with the additional flexibility of allowing multiple aux tracks to get their input from the same source point, and the organizational convenience of having the track alongside other tracks, instead of in the separate bus area.)
Pro Add effects plugins to individual audio or MIDI clips
In addition to an effects rack and ProChannel effects that you can insert into each track, SONAR also allows you to insert effects plugins on individual audio or MIDI clips.
Using the non-destructive editing, you can easily cut one of those clips into smaller pieces if you'd like to apply an effect non-destructively to an individual note or musical phrase.
Pro Includes Melodyne Essential via ARA
Pro Very frequent updates
The last few years they have given updates with new features and fixes nearly every month. Great support, constant innovation.
Pro Inbuilt bridge
Includes inbuilt bridge allowing a 64-bit software to use a 32-bit plugin and vice versa without having to painstakingly use an external bridge to bridge the plugins. This will save one from bridging every new plugin that isn't compatible.
Pro Track folders
Group tracks into folders to expand/collapse Solo Mute or Archive.
Pro Touch screen support
If your computer has a touch screen, use gestures to optimize your workflow.
Pro Built in vocal comping and pitch correction
The Sonar DAW has some of the best pitch correction available, and it comes with the DAW.
Pro Vocal Alignment tool
Pro Session Templates
New projects can have the entire session defined from a template. Tracks, IO, folders routing, Etc
Pro Integrated drum replacement
Pro Integrated SoundCloud and YouTube uploads
When you're done with a project, upload it straight to SoundCloud or YouTube from the Sonar DAW.
Pro Home Studio, Platinum, Professional, and Artist subscription tiers
Lots of new features to separate them from the pack and put them in the lead again like when they were the very first DAW to go 64 bits. New model for purchasing the DAW means a purchaser can pay a monthly fee to use the DAW instead of having to buy it all upfront, so now you can try it for a month or 4 and if it does not work for you, dump it without having spent the full price to buy the whole thing.
Pro Intuitive interface
The interface is very intuitive once you learn the program. It's like working in the studio with physical components.
Pro Supports video playback
You can play video alongside your audio tracks during playback to make it easier for post-production or audio-to-video sync.
Pro Easy to learn and use
Everything is very straightforward and intuitive, making it's workflow quite streamline and easy to customize.
Pro In collaboration with BandLab Technologies
Pro Better for running external MIDI devices
It comes with a lot of Hardware Instrument definition templates and you can easily build your own.
Pro Laptop Friendly
also good for small scree laptops
Pro Professional DAW
Professional, complete and very efficient DAW. It is unbelievable how BandLab does not charge a penny for it!
The standalone version of Photoshop costs $19.99/month, though it can be leased as part of the Creative Cloud Photography bundle that includes Lightroom for $9.99/month.
Con Latest versions of Photoshop are subscription-only
While you can still buy CS6 from 2012 without needing a subscription by contacting Adobe support or the cut-down Photoshop Elements, any full-version version of Photoshop past CS6 requires a subscription.
Con Learning it can take some time
While you can relatively quickly learn how to perform a few basic image editing tasks, understanding Photoshop's ins and outs can be difficult. It's partially due to the sheer amount of functionality that Photoshop packs (and understanding that some of the advanced functionality can take a while to understand on its own), and partially due to it being aimed at professionals with little hand-holding for novice users.
Con Batch editing of images is not straightforward
Photoshop is designed to work extensively on one image at a time and while batch editing support exists, it's not that intuitive to use.
Con Affinity Photo is just as good at a fraciton of the price
Switching from Photoshop to Affinity Photo and it's hard to notice the difference quality of a professional's work. They say that PS is the industry standard, but so very few pros that tried Affinity Photo ever look back.
Con Asset management capabilities are lacking
In Photoshop asset management is done through a separate program called Bridge. As Bridge is supposed to be a file management tool for not just Photoshop's files, but for files generated by all of Adobe's applications it covers a breadth of capabilities, but not depth.
Con Very slow
It needs a very power CPU and GPU and many GBs of RAM and still it is so slow.
Con Not good enough to be so expensive
Probably the only big advantage Photoshop has over the other free software is the adjustment layers. But still too expensive for just one feature.
Con 64-bit Windows only
This DAW is not available on any operating system except for Windows. However, many Mac users operate the Sonar DAW in a dual boot environment.
A version for Mac is in the works. You can learn more about it here.
Con Lacks a separate audio editor
Con Over-engineered GUI
Every part of the screen has tiny windows and symbols that might move, expand or disappear when you click on them. It is distracting and disorienting for new users.
Con Transport bar is big
Con Sound and fx routing is broken or non-intuitive
E.g. Midi instrument> change to MIDI channel, assign midi controler>click Icon on track which sometimes leaves midi control to a non desired track, and the process fails, and now you mull through the steps again, only to find it fails> contact support>They tell you to update>software update fails> Support contacts you 3 months later>Rinse&repeat.
Con Steep Learning Curve
This DAW has a bit of a learning curve, if you're new to DAW software, this may not be recommended for a beginner.