When starting out in music production, you will find that there are a ton of new terms and abbreviations for you to learn. And you will hear me using one all the time.

That abbreviation is DAW but not everyone will be able to explain what it means to you in as much detail as you need.

So – just what is a DAW and what does it do?

Here, we are going to take a look at a DAW to see what it stands for and how it applies to the music production industry.

Check out the article below to find all the information you need!

What Does DAW Stand For?

The abbreviation of DAW is one commonly used in the music production industry and it stands for Digital Audio Workstation.

What this means is that the abbreviation DAW is used to refer to a piece of software that music producers often use to make their music.

A DAW is an acronym of the words ‘Digital Audio Workstation’ and refers to the software that music producers use to create music on their computer

Thus, a DAW is an essential part of the music production industry as it is a tool used to make music from the recording stage right down to editing.

In the past, music had to be transferred from one program to the next in order to be properly recorded, mixed, and edited.

However, today, everything can be done all through one piece of equipment – a DAW.

This is all thanks to the evolution of computers and technology since the mid 1990s which has allowed the modern DAW to become an intuitive piece of equipment beloved for its functionality and high-tech design.

So, as a music producer, you will definitely need to understand what this handy software is and what it does as you will definitely be using it during your career.

What Is A DAW Used For?

As we mentioned earlier, a DAW is a valuable piece of equipment that is used by every music producer to make their music.

They are very versatile and are capable of doing multiple uses – which is why so many music producers use them as a go-to tool to make music.

Here we are going to go into each of the key features of a DAW in detail so you have a better understanding of its potential.

Take a look at the information below to learn about everything this single piece of equipment can do!

DAWs Are Used To Record Audio

DAWs are capable of recording both line level and mic level instruments.

This means that you can use a DAW to record yourself while singing or playing an instrument such as a keyboard or guitar.

This will all be recorded into separate channels so you can record two channels simultaneously.

Not only that but you can even manipulate your recorded audio with plugins such as compressors, equalizers, and more.

DAWs Are Used To Host VSTs

Another great feature of a DAW is its ability to host virtual instruments (also abbreviated as VST).

This means that you can download a plugin for a virtual instrument and play it to create real instrument sounds.

Then, you can load it up to your DAW and it will treat it as recorded audio.

This is a huge advantage that many music producers use as it means that you can achieve the sound of any instrument without needing to actually own it.

Plus, this ability also extends to software synthesizers and sample based instruments.

By using a MIDI, you can record and edit these on your DAW with the help of a MIDI controller.

Although this does require additional software, it can still all be done through your DAW.

DAWs Are Used To Edit Audio

This feature is probably one of the most important features you will find on a DAW and one of the reasons why they are so widely used.

Rather than pass your audio around to different programs, you can just slice, move and crossfade audio files all on a DAW.

This means you can completely change the sound of your audio – all on one piece of equipment!

The editing features of a DAW also makes it super popular with other kinds of audio editors, including podcasters.

However, it is still an essential tool used by music producers as it helps make editing audio files super easy.

DAWs Are Used For Mixing

This step in the music production process is one that is vital to the overall success of your audio and a DAW can handle it no problem.

Whether it’s compression or EQ you need to blend all your audio channels together, a DAW comes with a built-in mixer view which makes it easy to achieve the sound you want.

The ability to use plugins also helps the process but you can also make your own customizable templates to help speed up your workflow.

So, a DAW can also handle one of the most important parts of the music production process – another reason why this piece of equipment is vital for you to understand!

DAWs Are Used For Mastering

We mentioned earlier that a DAW is capable of hosting VSTs and this means that it can also host mastering plugins and software to help with digital mastering too.

This means that you can use tools such as EQs, limiters, metering tools, and multiband compressors to master analog and digital workflows!

DAWs Are Used In Live Performances

Although this feature is not often used, a DAW is capable of being used to help enhance live performances.

For example, you can use both your DAW and midi controller to trigger sound effects or apply automation when you are unable to perform live.

So, although DAWs are usually used for the recording and editing process of producing music, this feature just goes to show its full potential.

You can use it in so many different ways – which makes it such an important piece of equipment for you to master!

Ableton Live is your best bet when it comes to an excellent made for live performance.

Final Thoughts

So, DAW stands for Digital Audio Workstation and it refers to a piece of equipment that is widely used in audio production.

It is super versatile which makes it useful to those who record, mix, perform live music and also any kind of content creator who handles audio such as podcasters.

My DAW of choice is Logic Pro X. This was mostly because it was the one that I learnt on and also I am a huge fan of Apple. Decision was made for me really but I happen to love the software too which is a total bonus.

This just goes to show how important this single tool is and why you need to know how to use it in order to excel at your career.

Good luck!