Reason was always extremely popular among musicians precisely because of its powerful integration of instruments, tools and effects, initially available on the Swedish company's own rack format and more recently also through its Rack Extension platform, currently embraced by over 1000 software companies. Still, many musicians wanted to combine available virtual instruments and effects that where not available as Extensions. Also, many users simply export their work to one of the many popular studio DAW applications, precisely because of VST support.
With Reason 9.5, Propellerhead Software finally found a way to bring its popular application to another level, introducing a practical workflow that allows Reason users to discover new creative ways to use VST plugins within the same familiar environment. Reason’s patchable rack allows users to route audio any way they want, and the new plugin delay compensation in Reason 9.5 keeps everything in phase at all times. With the delay compensation on, Reason will calculate the total delay in each signal path and adjust the timing of each discrete signal path accordingly. The adjustment is automatic but can also be set manually for each mixer channel.
“We’ve seen some amazing VST instruments and effects that are available in the market, and we simply wanted our Reason users to have access to them without compromising Reason’s unique workflow,” says Mattias Häggström Gerdt, Reason Product Manager. “Reason finds all the VSTs on your computer and displays them next to your other Reason devices. You can simply drag and drop a VST plugin into the Reason rack and get started right away—or you can go as deep as you want and access the CV and audio connections for a truly modular music-making experience.”
Reason 9.5 supports any VST 2.4-compliant instrument or effect plugin, which means just about every VST out there will work in Reason. In addition to the 375+ Rack Extension instruments and effects from over 90 different manufacturers already available, the Propellerhead Shop now features a custom curated list of VSTs from leading VST plugin brands including Waves, Output, KV331 and iZotope.
Reason 9 was released in June 2016 and introduced a host of new devices, sounds and creative tools that inspire music makers to create more and better music – from creative spark to polished production. Since Reason 9’s release, Propellerhead has released two free updates, bringing Ableton’s Link technology to the Reason rack and improving their Rack Extension SDK with highly requested features.
As Propellerhead explains, introducing VST support doesn't mean that the company will replace its Rack Extension technology. The update basically allows the support for plugins to complement Rack Extensions in a truly transparent way for users. The company even says this will allow them to focus the development of the Rack Extension platform even more.
Reason 9.5 is a free update for all Reason 9 owners and is currently available for free through Reason’s auto update. Reason 9 is currently available as a direct download from Propellerhead’s website or from an authorized dealer at the following suggested retail pricing:
Reason 9 USD $449 / EUR €405
Reason Essentials 9 USD $129 / EUR €120
Reason 9 Upgrade (from any previous Reason version) USD $129 / EUR €129