I currently use MainStage in my keyboard rig, and I'd like to add some new sounds - especially pads - warm, string, ethereal, etc.  I also want something that's easy to understand, because it seems most folks tweak the stock patches.

I've narrowed the field down down to Reason or Omnisphere, but I'm having trouble making the decision.  

Reason almost looks like it could replace MainStage, and I'm not sure I want to make a complete switch.  I'm just interested in the Thor synth within it (at least I *think* that's included).

Omnisphere seems to be popular among worship keyboardists also because of the pad sound library.

Does anyone have any experience with these packages?


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Guess you are running a MAC, many that I know also run Pro Tools with that ( MAC based). I have run an old version of Sonar 6 on PC but that has many limitations, but I do not have any experience with Propellerheads Reason or the Omnisphere at all. I know of one who runs Cubase 6.5 ( new ver. 7 just out) with his Yamaha Motif XF and would never touch anything else. Sorry , I can't help much, but let us know which way you go.

Hi Allan,

Yes, I am running a Mac.  I've decided on Omnisphere for 3 reasons:  1) The amount of good tutorial info available, 2) the huge number of (looks like) usable pad patches both in the product and from third party sources, 3) the positive experience of other worship keyboardists I've been able to find using Google.

I've always been goosey about the Mac hard drive dying during worship, so my overall plan is to use a Nord Stage 2 as the master keyboard and main sound source, with the Mac/Omnisphere as a secondary sound source.  Then if the Mac decides to die, I have a fall back set of pads on the Nord I can quickly get to.


Love those Nord keyboards, I have been checking out their new Electro 4D and HP boards. I have heard that the Mainstage sounds are not as good as other software anyway ( going through Synthzone etc).

Having used MainStage quite a bit, and not being a super synth programmer, I can say the sound library (at least in the ESX24 sampler) is a bit disappointing, but I suppose you'd get tired of any library if you weren't tweaking the patches occasionally.

Wonder how many keyboard players would get more out of any synth they owned if they just knew more about the basics of creating sounds.  I know I would...

Scott, how is it going with your Omnisphere programming? I guess a steep learning curve with any new software, hope you get to post some of your creations :) .

Hi Allan,

I'm just about done getting familiar with the interface and calling up patches from the Stage2. I was also able to put together very usable layered strings with stock patches which I used to go with our worship team's rendition of "I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day" (Casting Crowns version).  The Hollywood Studio strings patches are remarkable.

So only now, this week, am I getting to the programming side of things.   It does look a bit steep, but I don't mind sharing the results if you'd like.  ;)



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