What’s a DAW you say? "Originated in the early 1980s, the term digital audio workstation (DAW) originally referred to a tape-less, computer-based system such as New England Digital’s Synclavier and Fairlight that used hard drives for media storage.” – Wikipedia.org
First of all, when people mention a DAW, they are referring a recording system/software, your digital workspace.
Now that you have a basic understanding of what DAW is, lets look few popular softwares that people use in today's industry.
“FL Studio is a full-featured, open architecture, music production environment capable of audio recording, composing, sequencing and mixing, for the creation of professional quality music. The FL Studio philosophy is creative freedom!”
I HIGHLY recommend this software for those of you who are new or just starting out with making music. It's a very powerful software that can be used to create any type of music on computer.
Least amount of learning curve out of all the DAW (in my opinion and many people will agree to this)
FREE LIFE TIME UPGRADE (if you buy it from the website)
Not good for "Recording" actual instrument
Sounds that come with the software blows (Thats why you have to work with third party sounds and other plug ins which I will make separate page regarding "Sounds" and "Samples")
Propellerhead Reason is a great software that is very similar to FL Studio in someways but also very different. Many people use Reason to make "Club" music and the things you can do with this software is simply amazing.
Great stand alone software (doesn't rely too much on other softwares)
It can be bit confusing if you're just starting out
OK Sounds (They have great sounds if you're into making "electronic/club" music but horrible brass and drum samples")
You can't record live instrument (Propellerhead has another software called Record if you're into live recording so be sure to check it out if you're interested.)
Cubase is wonderful software that is great for MIDI-Sequencing and also great for live recording. This software will satisfy your basic needs for music production and can take you to the next level.
Great for Songwriters
Little bit of learning curve
It's bit pricey (So only get it if you're committed)
This is what people call the "Industry Standards" when it comes to choosing your DAW, this is not for those of you who are just starting out, many of the industry professional use this program today.
Good for Recording
Good for Post Production
Has very high learning curve (but once you master this software, it will be very rewarding)
That's it for today, hope that was informative and be sure to check out my blog daily for updates and tips.