How Long Does It Take To Learn Cubase in 2024?

Learning a complex DAW like Cubase Pro can seem like a daunting task at first glance. With its dense interface, an abundance of features, and workflows involving many steps, Cubase’s learning curve can feel steep

However, with the right approach and an investment of time and practice, anyone can master Cubase Pro. 

In this post, we’ll explore just how long it takes to learn Cubase Pro, the most effective methods for new producers, and break down which version is best to start with on your journey. 

Whether you’re a total Cubase beginner or looking to switch from another DAW, read on to optimize your learning process.

How Long Does It Take To Learn Cubase?

It can take up to 4 years for a beginner to learn and master Cubase Pro. If you have some experience with other DAWs, you may be able to learn Cubase more quickly.

Most producers who use Cubase typically started with an easier DAW. if you have some music production experience, the larning curve is not as steep. 

A lot of beginners report that it takes a few weeks to learn the bare basics of Cubase. This means understanding the interface and beginning a track. 

With a couple of weeks under your belt with the software, you should be able to start a few bare-bone tracks. You should be able to insert tracks and use the instruments and effects in Cubase Pro

Key Factors Affecting Cubase Learning Curve:

  • Your Prior Music and Production Experience – If you’re brand new to music production and DAWs in general, expect a steeper learning curve. You’ll need to learn core concepts before diving deep into Cubase. But if you have experience with other DAWs or music theory, you’ll likely pick things up faster.
  • How Often You Use Cubase – The more regularly you open Cubase and start using it, the quicker you’ll get comfortable. Set aside focused practice time each day or week. Consistency is key.
  • What Exactly You Want to Learn – Mastering every feature and workflow in Cubase could take months or years. But learning enough to record vocals, MIDI, and basic mixing can happen much faster. Focus on core skills first.
  • Using Resources like Videos, Courses, and Forums – Self-teaching with trial and error is possible but slower. Make good use of the many Cubase tutorials online. Accelerate your learning.

Reasonable timeline for getting started with Cubase is:

  • 1-3 Weeks to Learn Basics: Navigating the DAW, recording audio and MIDI, basic editing and mixing.
  • 1-6 Months to Get Comfortable: Developing workflows, intermediate editing and processing skills.
  • 6+ Months to Get Advanced: Mastering Cubase’s depth, complex workflows and features.

But don’t get discouraged if it takes you longer. We all learn at different paces. Stick with it!

What Is The Best Way To Learn Cubase For A Beginner?

Starting with the basic features and workflows is the best way for a beginner to learn Cubase. Focus on recording audio and MIDI, making simple edits, and adding virtual instruments and effects at first. 

How Long Does It Take To Learn Cubase in 2023?

Once those foundations are built, move on to more advanced routing, automation, and mixing techniques.

It’s also helpful for beginners to follow along with Cubase video tutorials and read the operation manual to understand core concepts. 

Don’t get overwhelmed trying to learn everything at once. Stick to the fundamentals first before expanding your skillset. Patience and practice are key.

Here are my top tips for learning Cubase efficiently as a beginner:

  • Take an organized Cubase course. Structured video courses like those on Groove3, LinkedIn Learning or Udemy can teach you Cubase methodically. Better than random YouTube tutorials.
  • Read the manual! Yes, really read Cubase’s operation manual. Skipping it is a mistake. It covers everything Cubase can do in detail. Use for reference.
  • Learn core concepts first. Don’t jump right into advanced features. Master recording, MIDI editing, automation and basic mixing first. This creates a strong foundation to build on.
  • Watch tutorial videos. Seeing Cubase used in real-time by pros is invaluable. Subscribe to channels like The Home Studiio Corner, RecordingRevolution or Produce Like A Pro.
  • Experiment and practice daily. After learning a concept or technique, try it out yourself right away. Hands-on experience reinforces what you’ve learned.
  • Use built-in project templates. Cubase’s project templates give you a pre-routed session to dissect and learn from. Great for reverse engineering.
  • Join forums for support. Places like Steinberg’s own forum, Gearslutz and Reddit are full of helpful Cubase users. Ideal when stuck.

Patience and regular practice are key. But going through proper training will get you up and running in Cubase much faster.

How Steep Is The Learning Curve For Cubase?

Cubase is generally considered to have a steeper learning curve than some other popular DAWs like Logic Pro, Ableton Live or Pro Tools.

The learning curve for Cubase can be quite steep at first but gets easier over time. There are many powerful features under the hood which may seem daunting to a beginner. 

Having prior experience with other DAWs definitely helps flatten out the initial learning curve. As with any professional music software, be prepared to invest time and patience in order to get proficient.

Taking an online course or following video tutorials can help smooth out the early stages of the process. 

Stay organized, focus on one concept at a time, and apply your knowledge through regular hands-on practice to master Cubase.

Why Is Cubase So Difficult To Learn?

There are a few reasons for this:

  • Dense interface – Cubase has an immense amount of menus, windows, parameters and customization options. It can be overwhelming at first.
  • Workflow complexity – Operations like routing, automation, editing and mixing can involve many steps in Cubase. The workflows take time to click.
  • Abundant features – With its 30+ years of development, Cubase simply does a ton. Much more than most newcomers will ever need.
  • Less standardized – Unlike Ableton Live’s unified layout, Cubase leaves more open in how you set things up. This offers flexibility but less consistency.
  • Advanced MIDI and composition tools – Cubase excels at MIDI sequencing and complex composition. These advanced tools have a learning curve.

Cubase’s learning curve is very front-loaded. This means that once concepts click after those initial weeks and months, skills build on each other nicely.

Advanced users eventually find Cubase Pro 12 extremely intuitive. But that hump at the start takes dedication to get over. Time, practice and training will get you there!

Is Cubase 12 Easier To Learn Than Logic Pro?

In my experience, Cubase is a bit more challenging to pick up than Logic Pro for most new producers. If you’re completely new to music production, Logic Pro may have a gentler initial learning curve.

For an experienced producer transitioning from another DAW, Logic may feel more intuitive coming from platforms like Ableton or Pro Tools. 

So the ease of learning really depends on your background. Neither program is objectively easier to master from the start.

Some reasons Cubase tends to involve a steeper initial learning curve:

  • Logic’s interface feels more modern, streamlined and visually consistent
  • Core workflows like recording and editing audio are more straightforward in Logic
  • Apple’s DAW uses more standardized, familiar-looking interfaces
  • The MIDI environment is easier to grasp in Logic vs. Cubase’s advanced implementation
  • Built-in sounds, loops and instruments work seamlessly in Logic

With that said, experienced producers often highlight Cubase’s more flexible and customizable workflows once you learn them.

Logic may be easier to pick up, but Cubase can adapt more precisely to an expert user’s specific needs. Going deep has rewards.

For a total beginner, I’d probably recommend starting with Logic just to get your feet wet. But neither choice is inherently “superior” in the long run. Both are incredibly capable DAWs.

The key is picking one and committing the time to master it. Learning any advanced DAW requires effort and practice.

Is Cubase Easier To Learn Than Ableton Live?

No, Cubase does not have an easier learning curve compared to Ableton Live. As both are professional DAWs with deep feature sets, the learning curve is quite steep in the beginning. 

For new producers getting into digital audio workstations, Ableton Live tends to have a gentler initial learning curve compared to Cubase.

For DJ style music production involving live performance, clip launching, and loop manipulation, Ableton Live may initially be more intuitive to pick up.

Ableton’s session view and warp features lend themselves better to those techniques. On the other hand, Cubase’s more traditional approach to audio recording and mixing may click earlier for engineers coming from analog studios.

With that said, the two DAWs cater to different workflows so there are tradeoffs in ease of use depending on your needs.

Some key reasons Ableton Live can be easier for Cubase beginners:

  • Ableton Live’s session view encourages improvisation and experimentation from the start. Cubase focuses more on traditional composition and recording at first.
  • Live includes tons of built-in sounds, instruments, and effects right out of the box. With Cubase, you need to bring your own plugins and samples.
  • Live’s interface and layout stays consistent across its various features like mixing, MIDI, etc. Cubase has distinct editing modes and windows.
  • Ableton Live Standard has fewer features than even Cubase Elements. Less potential confusion for new users.
  • Live’s built-in tutorials and manual hold your hand through all major workflows step-by-step.

Cubase’s deep composition tools and customization can ultimately enable more complex production techniques. 

Learn the basics in Ableton Live 11, then expand your skills with Cubase’s possibilities!

Is Cubase Easier To Learn Than Pro Tools?

No, beginners often find Cubase Pro harder to get started with. For new producers, Cubase generally presents more of an initial learning curve than Avid’s industry standard Pro Tools.

Cubase does not necessarily have a shallower learning curve compared to Pro Tools. 

As two professional-grade DAWs with robust capabilities, beginners can expect a meaningful ramp up in time investment for mastery with both.

Here are some key reasons Pro Tools tends to be easier to pick up at first:

  • Pro Tools’ layout is stripped down to focus on recording, editing and mixing audio. Cubase contains MIDI sequencing, instruments, scoring, etc.
  • Avid’s DAW uses simple, unified windows for editing versus Cubase’s different modes.
  • The mixing workflow in Pro Tools follows more traditional analog mixing console conventions.
  • Pro Tools doesn’t involve learning virtual instruments and extensive MIDI implementation like Cubase. It’s focused on audio production.
  • Supported hardware like control surfaces integrate tightly with Pro Tools for instantly tactile control.

However, Cubase ultimately provides far more depth and customization options for MIDI, composition, and production flexibility.

For engineers mainly recording and mixing audio, Pro Tools provides a more instantly familiar experience. But Cubase unlocks immense creative possibilities with time.

Which Is The Best Version Of Cubase For Beginners?

The best version of Cubase for beginners is Cubase Elements. For new Cubase users just getting started, Cubase Elements provides the core tools you need at an affordable price.

For complete beginners, Cubase Elements provides a strong starting point to learn Cubase.

It includes the core tools like audio/MIDI recording, editing, virtual instruments, and effects without being overwhelmed by advanced features. 

Cubase Elements has a lighter learning curve but still gives a great foundation to springboard into Cubase Pro down the road.

Some key reasons Cubase Elements is the best starting point:

  • It’s the cheapest option at around $100-150.
  • The simplified interface is less overwhelming.
  • It has unlimited audio and MIDI tracks.
  • Basic virtual instruments and effects are included to get started with.
  • It focuses on core recording, editing, and mixing tools rather than advanced features.
  • Skills learned in Elements transfer seamlessly to Cubase Artist and Pro.

I’d recommend starting with Cubase Elements, learning it inside out, and then upgrading later if you need more advanced tools.

The stripped-down Elements experience helps avoid feature overload. And you still get Cubase’s incredible MIDI sequencing and mixing workflow to dive into.

Once you’ve mastered the fundamentals in Elements, moving up to Artist or Pro gives you more instruments, effects, editing tools, and customization. 

Here are some of the other versions of Cubase and their features:

  • Cubase Artist: This version includes more features than Cubase Elements, such as more virtual instruments and effects, more mixer channels, and support for surround sound.
  • Cubase Pro: This is the most advanced version of Cubase and includes all the features of Cubase Artist, plus more. It also includes a number of professional features, such as support for video editing and mastering.

The Bottom Line – How Long Does It Take To Learn Cubase in 2023?

Learning Cubase takes time and dedication. Be patient, set aside regular practice time, and use all the resources available. 

The initial learning curve is steep, but your skills will build week by week. Before you know it, you’ll be leveraging Cubase’s immense creative potential to the fullest. 

Trust the process and enjoy the journey.