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7 Reasons to Stream from your DAW – How and Why

Apr 02, 2024

Most internet connections are capable of streaming high-quality audio from anywhere to anywhere. Here’s how streaming in your DAW can open new ways to make better music

Stream your mix or master sessions to any device

With the launch of Waves Stream, it’s a time to shine a light on how today’s producers have more ways to work together – and as individuals – than ever before. In our internet age, it’s possible for most people to send audio data from a DAW out to the rest of the world, and to send it back again, all with lossless quality.

Waves Stream enables DAW user to send and receive high-quality audio incredibly easily from one computer to another device. In this article, we’re going to explore exactly what that means in the real world by looking at several scenarios and situations that now let you benefit from this new plugin’s talents.

Here are seven ways that streaming audio – whether you’re using Waves Stream to do it or not – can help you expand the horizons of your studio and music production workflows.

1. The Car Test and More

How do you know when it’s ready? Ancient warriors read chicken entrails, chefs stick a fork in something, and audio engineers have The Car Test. Generations of mixing engineers have applied this one simple test to works-in-progress and mixes they think are ready: Does it sound good in a car?

Stream your mix from the studio to car

The problem with the car test has always been in getting the music from the studio into the car’s speakers. Cassette recorders, CD players and these days, phones have all been used to shuttle audio around.

With Waves Stream, you can add a single plugin to your master buss, loop playback, use the QR code or link to open the stream on your phone, needing only to connect it to your car’s sound system in order to give your mix the car test.

Giving Feedback on the Stream

The great thing about using this method is that anyone still in the studio can change the mix, and those changes will of course reflect in the stream – not the case when exporting audio files.

2. Being in the Mastering Session from anywhere in the world

In today's world, there are many ways to get your masters done, but one of them is to work with a professional mastering engineer in their dedicated mastering suite. It’s a luxury many budding producers can only dream of, be it because of budget constraints or simply because the mastering engineer they wish to work with is located in a different country.

Stream a mastering session from anywhere in the world

Budget aside, say you have the means to pay for the service, but you can’t quite stretch to funding the airfare, hotel and other associated costs. This is where Waves Stream can save you trouble, time and money.

The mastering engineer can send out a stream to you via email which they can also talk to you down and you receive this and open it on any device around you. The best thing here is you get the opportunity to hear your mastering take place from the same location and sweet spot you produced your music from.

Many mastering engineers charge extra for client attended sessions with discounts if they have the freedom to undertake the work on their own time. Who knows, you could get a discount if you inform your engineer that you would like that attended session experience but are flexible to be on the stream at a time when they are ready to undertake your project.

3. When you Don’t Want to End a Session But…

When we’ve got to go, we’ve got to go. But now, wherever we’re going, we can still stay connected to what’s happening on the master output back at the studio. Simply scan the QR code or copy the link, and you’re back in the room – even through a web browser.

Maybe you’ve got to get to another appointment, go home or pick something up. Maybe the star vocalist is arriving at the airport and you want to keep your ear on the session while simultaneously car testing the mix. Waves Stream will keep you from dropping out!

4. Getting Quick Feedback on a Mix or More

Sometimes we all need a second opinion, but nobody’s around. Sure, it’s simple to send a file to someone and ask for feedback on a mix or master in progress… but it’s even easier to send a link and have them hear your stream within seconds.

Within Waves Stream, you can control the sidechain audio input directly from the Stream Send plugin. You can speak along with your mix stream super easy this way.

5. Get a Feed of a Gig or Live Event

DJing at your local darts bar? Mixing Front of House at Wembley Stadium? Busking using your laptop as a live looper? As long as you’ve got a DAW and the Waves Stream Send plugin installed, you can stream it out. But why?

Well, you could be recording the gig for posterity or for critique in the cold light of day. As an extra service you could record the stereo mix stream to a separate DAW in order to upload it to socials for your fans, or record the performance just for your own audio scrapbook. In any case, automatically beaming out the feed from your master buss keeps your local computer’s hard drive from getting too involved, and potentially scuppering its crucial jobs for the night.

6. Live-Streaming for Final Approval

Back in the mists of time, bands, artists, journalists and other interested parties would gather to listen to a piece of work before it was released. Usually this would take place in a studio, a maximum-security music fortress, or a Faraday cage 200 feet below the earth’s crust.

Stream a mix session and talk at the same time

Now though, it can happen wherever! With a streaming link, you can host your own kind of listening party for final mix approval over your favorite video call platform, or just using the link from Waves Streaming via email. Waves Stream is peer-to-peer, so a link you send could go to a band who are all within the same room on the other side of the world waiting to hear their final mix, or a panel of record industry executives eager to hear your mix fresh from the studio.

Waves Stream is also highly secure, with a passcode entry option for streams you want to keep private. Also, if you issue a link that doesn’t get clicked within five minutes, the stream terminates.

7. Stream your DAW while Teaching

It’s the time-honored way to make money while working your way into the music industry: teaching. And today’s music teachers have the ability to operate from anywhere in the world – especially when the subject is the art of music production, electronic music, or mixing and mastering.

With Waves Stream, music teachers can now open up a peer-to-peer stream from their DAW, transmitting a full mix, a mastering project, or simply a single audio channel plugged in and armed for recording. Whatever you’re teaching remotely, Waves Stream can probably offer a convenient solution.

Get started with Waves Stream today with Waves Creative Access Essential and Ultimate. To find out more, visit the Waves Stream page.