Skip to navigation

Steinberg Wavelab 7 review


A long-overdue overhaul of the interface, but overall the results are mixed

Review Date: 8 Nov 2010

Reviewed By: Ben Pitt

Price when reviewed: £373 (£438 inc VAT)

Overall Rating
3 stars out of 6

Features & Design
4 stars out of 6

Value for Money
3 stars out of 6

Ease of Use
3 stars out of 6

New versions of Steinberg WaveLab are few and far between, but even by its own standards this one has been a long time coming - it's five years since version 6 was announced.

There are two ways to look at this. On the one hand, WaveLab users have been left in the doldrums while those using its main rival, Sony Sound Forge Pro, have enjoyed new features such as high-quality mastering plugins, non-destructive editing, surround-sound support and multitrack editing. On the other hand, WaveLab 6 already had many of these features, and £70 plus VAT for five years of updates is pretty good value.

It's certainly a big upgrade, as demonstrated by the move to Windows 7 or Mac OS X 10.6 only - no earlier versions of Windows are supported. There's a lot that's new, including podcast publishing, improved pitch-shifting and time-stretching, background batch processing, DDP file export for sending to disc-replication facilities and plenty more besides.

Our main criticism with the previous version was its clunky, dated interface, so we're happy to see a thorough redesign this time around. The tabbed docking-panel approach has been done many times before, but this implementation is particularly impressive. Panels slide across the screen to make room as you drag others around, and there are numerous shortcuts for arranging them neatly.

Steinberg Wavelab 7

A new Workspaces feature lets you save and recall panel layouts. It could be more streamlined, though, with numerous mouse clicks required to recall a workspace. There are four editing modes - audio file, audio montage, batch processing and podcast - and each has its own set of workspaces. While each of these modes appear to operate independently, certain features such as the Master Section remain linked. There's some sense to this, but it isn't the tidiest approach.

One further workspace type - Control Window - saves and recalls layouts from the software's comprehensive range of metering, analysis and metadata panels. However, the option to launch a Control Window disappears from the main menu when working in Audio File mode.

These interface niggles, along with the sheer volume of panels and toolbar buttons, make it an intimidating application for new users. However, at this price we suspect they'll be willing to confront the steep learning curve in order to enjoy the eventual reward of having so many tools close to hand. Existing users may feel a little lost, too, but there's a well-written PDF document at to help you make the transition. Then again, Sound Forge offers much the same set of features and doesn't feel nearly as disparate and complex.

1 2
Subscribe to PC Pro magazine. We'll give you 3 issues for £1 plus a free gift - click here
User comments

Latest Prices

These links refer to Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium Anytime Upgrade from Windows 7 Starter not Wavelab.


By paulbradbeer on 11 Nov 2010

Leave a comment

You need to Login or Register to comment.


Latest Category Reviews
Citrix ShareFile review

Citrix ShareFile

Category: Software
Rating: 5 out of 6
Price: £21
DataCore Software SANsymphony-V10 review

DataCore Software SANsymphony-V10

Category: Software
Rating: 5 out of 6
Price: £2,104
Apple OS X Yosemite review

Apple OS X Yosemite

Category: Software
Rating: 6 out of 6
Price: £0
Netgear ProSafe WC7600 review

Netgear ProSafe WC7600

Category: Switches
Rating: 5 out of 6
Price: £1,404


Most Commented Reviews
Latest News Stories Subscribe to our RSS Feeds
Latest Blog Posts Subscribe to our RSS Feeds
Latest Features
Latest Real World Computing


Sponsored Links


Your email:

Your password:

remember me


Hitwise Top 10 Website 2010

PCPro-Computing in the Real World Printed from

Register to receive our regular email newsletter at

The newsletter contains links to our latest PC news, product reviews, features and how-to guides, plus special offers and competitions.