Steinberg has released Cubase 8.5 in both Pro and Artist versions, bringing cloud features as well as a whole stack of workflow enhancements to the popular DAW platform. The big news is VST Transit, an integrated cloud storage and collaboration system accessible from inside Cubase. Available in both versions, it ties to your Cubase license and lets you upload audio, MIDI and other tracks from a project to special space on Steinberg’s servers and then either work on them yourself from another location or collaborate and share projects with others.
There’s some social stuff built in so you can make friends online and you get 500MB of free storage and 1GB free traffic per month. That’s not a whole lot, though they will be offering paid upgrades to these limits as of mid January 2016. It seems like most of Cubase’s own features are handled by the cloud so you can upload most track and data types without issues, though there’s no mention of third party plug-ins which isn’t entirely surprising since they’re not part of the Cubase ecosystem. VST Transit will be live updated as time goes on however, so this situation may change.
There’s a new version of Retrologue, a bundled synth, which expands and enhances this virtual analogue instrument. Then there are a load of workflow changes covering everything from recording and mixing to MIDI editing, chord pads and working with MediaBay. As is usually the case, these involve many expanded, rearranged and simplified tools, windows and techniques. They are explained in great detail on Steinberg’s site for you to peruse. Cubase Artist 8 gets many of the same enhancements as the Pro version, though there are of course important feature differences and associated price differences. A detailed feature comparison can be found here. http://www.steinberg.net/en/products/cubase/line_up.html
It’s not a free upgrade though it’s pretty cheap if you already have Cubase 8. Pricing for the major upgrade routes is as follows.
Cubase Pro 8.5 full version £406
Upgrade from Cubase Pro 8 £36
Upgrade from Cubase 7 £147
Cubase Artist 8.5 full version £221
Upgrade from Cubase Artist 8 £36
Upgrade from Cubase Artist 7.5 £73
Read in detail about all the new features at http://www.steinberg.net/en/products/cubase/new_features/whats_new_in_cubase_85.html