Bitwig Studio 4 Brings Major New Features, Apple Silicon Support

Bitwig has announced Bitwig Studio 4, a major update to their DAW for macOS & Windows.

Bitwig Studio 4 focuses on ‘new musical timelines’, including comping for audio clips, both in the Clip Launcher and the Arranger; a new set of Operators, for changing the chance, recurrence, and more of any note or audio event; Random Spread for any expression point (like per-note pitch, or audio panning); and Native Apple Silicon support on Mac, even allowing Intel and ARM plug-ins to work side-by-side.

Here’s what’s new in Bitwig Studio 4:

Audio Comping

Each take is given its own color so from the first swipe of a take lane, the sources are clear. To swap in a different take, just tap it. Then press the up or down arrow to cycle thru the other takes. From the composite lane, move a boundary by clicking, adjust gain by dragging, or fix timing by sliding.

Operators

Operators include four modes, which can be used individually or in any combination:

Chance makes each event more or less likely.

Repeats allow each event to retrigger at a set rate, or just divide the note length into any number of pieces. Yes, you can ramp the timing of these (and the velocities for note repeats). And a Slice at Repeats option is available to print out the individual events.

Occurrence sets conditions for each event, like: Is this the first loop of the clip or not? Is the performance-control Fill button turned on? Or did the previous event play, or was it silent?

Recurrence thinks of each event as its own looping timeline. So pick a cycle length (say, every four loops of the clip), and then check-off whether the event plays on each of those four passes.

The combination lets you do things like create a steady stream of 16th notes, each with a 50% chance, or connecting two notes so that either the first one plays or the second, but never both.

Expression Spread

Bitwig’s engine uniquely allows expression automation for notes and audio. You can give note velocities randomization, and you can also give each piece of a chord its own panning. Or create a note that starts in tune and then drifts to a random pitch. Or give each slice of an audio clip a slightly randomized gain.

Native on Apple Silicon

Bitwig Studio now runs natively on Apple Silicon, and your Intel and ARM VSTs can live alongside each other. Bitwig Studio has alway hosted plugins separately from the DAW. Now this means you can mix VST architectures as well, and just as safely.

Other updates:

  • Bitwig Studio is now localized in Chinese, Japanese, and German. The interface remains the same, but functions, labels, and in-app documentation — including the Interactive Help for our 300+ devices and modules — can be displayed in any of these languages.
  • Improved export options, including lossless formats (WAV & FLAC), familiar lossy options (OGG & MP3), and a new contender (OPUS).
  • You can now import data from your FL Studio (FLP) and Ableton Live (ALS) files into Bitwig. Your clips and arrangements should make it over pretty cleanly, as well as VST plug-ins. If you are coming from Auxy, you can now export your work directly as a Bitwig Studio project.
  • Content sliding (and gain handles for audio) is available directly at the clip and event level with visual handles that appear while you work.
  • Waveforms are now shown in a Perceptual scale (or switch back to Linear in the Dashboard).
  • Grid and Polymer filters have a smoother response now for extreme resonance and modulation cases.

Pricing and Availability

The Bitwig Studio 4 Beta is available now. Everyone with an active Bitwig Studio upgrade plan has access.

The official Bitwig Studio 4 release is planned for the end of Q2/early Q3. It is a free upgrade to everyone with an active Upgrade Plan for Bitwig Studio. All new features except comping are also part of Bitwig Studio 16-Track and 8-Track.

22 thoughts on “Bitwig Studio 4 Brings Major New Features, Apple Silicon Support

  1. Bitwig just went from ‘no comping’ to possibly having the best audio comping of any DAW….(I am normally a Studio One user for comping/audio work)

    It was the best DAW I have used modulation/experimental stuff and the ‘operators’ take that to a new level, but its now a serious contender as a standard linear DAW as well…

    I would have said before this was the idea DAW if you like ‘clip’ workflow, racks, modulation, modular stuff, Electron type sequencing etc, now I would recommend it to anyone….

      1. I agree with this, I would definitely like that standard sampling workflow. Also could use better audio quantize functions, groove pool/swing options in my opinion. That said Bitwig is my favorite DAW to create music in.

  2. Long tempted by Bitwig , tired of Ableton’s intransigence & haven’t upgraded to Live11 as my 3rd party remote scripts arent supported : so I’m closer than ever to jumping …but… I neeeeeeeeed vertical Session View.
    How about it as an option Bitwig ?????

    1. With Bitwig you can have session and arrange at the same time (one screen) and easily covert one to the other -so they need to line up….you get used to it pretty fast, I din t even think about it any more.

    2. Guys, they have always had a vertical session view on the mixer page… Since version1. AND unlike Live you have actually see a list of your plugins on each channel of the mixer as well.

  3. I’m an all-in Logic user, but if you’re not going that way, its a cool battle between Reaper and Bitwig on the lower/freakier end, IMO. Its nice to see this version talk with Apple Silicon so early on. That’s daring but smart. Some prefer clips and modular bits, so Logic’s Live Loops may win a few of those people over. Can you say coin-toss? Thumbs up for multiple types of DAWs so you can mix & match ’em like synths if you wanna. Solid update, Bitwig.

  4. aargh.. epic fail that i still cannot extract grooves in order to make a quantize template. with ableton (and others) the timing and volume information from any audio or midi clip can be extracted to create a new groove. sorry, bitwig, but do your homework, please.

    1. seems you fail to see bitwig have so many other. things going on no other software have.
      this is one daw feature. bitwig don’t need to copy every single feature of any other daw
      anyway, it’s a nice feature on paper but i never found a use for it, it’s never sounded musical for me. guess if you ain’t got groove, extracting it will not help 🙂

      1. There are tons of uses for that feature, as well as better swing options. Epic fail seems like a stretch but I have long wanted this feature. Agree with you otherwise though, its an awesome piece of software for sure!

        1. calling a daw epic fail because it doesn’t have whatever you got use to on the one before is calling for attention/replays. i’m just here to satisfy

      2. This are big omissions, there is no way around it, especially in a clip based environment. It is ridiculous that one can find timing information in reaper and samplitude and not in Bitwig.

    1. expecting whatever you think is basic from a software that focus on many (many!) other things is a mistake.
      enjoy what you have and learn to use whatever you have, it’s allot.

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