Audio editing is a massive industry. There is music production, podcasts, and all sorts of other people that need audio editing equipment. Creating interesting sounds in your music requires some tools. One of the most important tools would be a digital audio workstation or DAW. One of the most popular DAWs on the market is Cubase. But serious music producers will need a great control surface to make production easier and to control your DAW with ease. Today we will look at some great control surfaces that will work well with Cubase.
Combining a DAW and Control Surface
My relationship with sound has been an ongoing love affair since I was a kid. And that naturally grew into music production and playing with sounds while recording and audio editing. Having a great digital audio workstation has allowed me to do some really interesting stuff with sound. From the comfort of my own home and with the most basic computer and recording equipment.
But when you start to get serious about sound recording, a computer keyboard and mouse just don’t have enough control to do everything that you might want to do. That is where a control surface comes into play.
This will give you maximum control over your DAW. Sensitive faders and buttons allow you to get the effect that you want. With Cubase, you will get a really intense digital audio workstation that has many different types of features. There are a few different versions of Cubase that has slightly different options.
But for the most part, it is an intense DAW that takes some getting used to. But in the end, it is worth the effort since you will be able to do everything that a professional music producer will need to do. So, let’s check out some of the great control surfaces that are compatible with Cubase.
1. Steinberg CC121
- What I Love: This is the ultimate Cubase control surface
- What I Dislike: It is not readily available anymore
You can’t make a list of control surfaces for Cubase without including this one on the list. Most DAWs have a control surface that combines very well with them, and for Cubase, this would be the one. Both tools are made by Steinberg. This control surface was in fact created especially to use with Cubase. It is the ultimate combination. The features of the DAW are easily controlled by the CC121.
This is a relatively basic controller that won’t be confusing to use. Since Cubase can be intricate, this is a really good thing. It is a control surface that will be easily used by most audio producers, even someone who is just starting out.
There aren’t additional knobs and buttons to assign to specific parameters and this can take some getting used to. But when you are you will enjoy using this control surface. And it does make it slightly less confusing.
It is still one of the best control surfaces on the market, especially for Cubase, even after it has been on the market for well over a decade. The big problem with that is that some of the components that they used to build the CC121 are no longer available. Making building them impossible.
That is why this control surface is not being made anymore. Still, you can find new and used ones up for sale, and if you can find them, it is still a great option to use for Cubase.
2. Akai Pro MIDIMix
- What I Love: It gives you a lot of features for this budget
- What I Dislike: Buttons that don’t have a great feel
When talking about great control surfaces, the Akai Professional MIDIMix has to be on the list. It is a control surface that gives you many different options, but the best part is that it comes at a truly incredible price. It works well with many DAWs including Cubase.
If you want to get used to using a control surface, or if you don’t want to spend a lot of cash before knowing if it really does make life easier, then this could be the perfect control surface to buy. You might just end up loving it so much that you never upgrade it.
It doesn’t feel like a cheap product. Instead, the components do feel sturdy and well built. The only part where it does slightly feel like they have cut some costs might be with the buttons and knobs. The buttons have a gel feeling, that I just don’t find pleasant to work with. The knobs are also slightly smaller than many users would prefer. If you have small hands then they are sensitive enough to use. But they are slightly small for bigger hands.
But it makes sense that they are made in this size. This is a control surface that is made with portability in mind. Many DJs use it to do gigs. Or producers use it to take with them to other studios. It is small enough to fit most spaces.
Yet, it still has 8 faders and a single master and will give you a lot of options and the features you need to make something wonderful.
3. Solid State Logic UF8
- What I Love: Solid build and easy setup
- What I Dislike: The price
This is definitely one of the most expensive control surfaces on this list. But many believe that is one of the best options available on the market today. It is a lot more expensive than some of the other options on this list but it has been compared to control surfaces that are upwards of $5000.
You won’t have to pay that for this control surface, but it is still pretty pricey. At the same time, it gives you plenty of options. Solid State Logic has been making great audio editing tools for a long time. They were in fact some of the pioneers in recording world back when everything was analog. But going digital has not slowed them down at all.
They make great products and the UF8 is one of the best. It is run on SSL 360 software. That means that it opens a whole new world of configuration. It will also completely streamline your creative process.
If there are a few different DAWs that you like to use at different times, then it can become annoying when you have to switch your setup between this software. But you won’t have that problem with the UF8.
Not only is this a great piece of hardware to use with Cubase, but you can also use this control surface and connect three different DAWs all at the same time. That means you can set up Cubase and also add other great DAWs like Logic Pro and Pro Tools at the same time. Plus, it is easy to set up.
It is a sturdy and durable piece of tech; you won’t have to worry that a small bump will cause too much damage. The UF8 has 8 sensitive motorized faders and rotary knobs that give you a lot of editing freedom.
The buttons are backlit and they can even be programmed. Making this a great tool to speed up the editing process.
Control Surface for Cubase
When you are just starting to play with audio editing, it is possible to do so with only the basics. But if you are more serious then you will need a DAW combined with a great control surface. Cubase will combine well with these control surfaces for the ultimate creating experience.