FL Studio 12 vs 20: DAW Comparisons & Reviews

If you're looking for the best music digital studio to ease the production of your electronic, then you'll find a trustworthy and loyal partner in FL studio. Formerly known as Fruity loops, this digital audio workstation (DAW) started as something minor. But recently, considering the growth this DAW has gone through, it has morphed into something big.

Every electric music producer should jump on the FL Studio train. However, there seem to be quite a lot of versions. And who knows? You could have come across FL Studio 12 just yesterday. But now, here you are, discovering that there is an FL Studio 20 version.

You can't wait to explore the app but, which would you opt for? The FL studio 12 or 20? Don't worry; we'll help you end the FL Studio 12 vs. 20 war that’s been raging continuously in your head. Here's a review and comparison between two different versions of FL studio. Sit tight, and let's dig in.


FL Studio 12 vs. 20: The Differences Between FL Studio 12 vs. 20

Although FL Studio 12 and 20 are from the same creators, they possess different features in specific ways. They but show the growth that the FL Studio DAW has undergone after a while. It also shows how Imagine Line keeps working to make their product better and comprehensive for their end-users.

This section focuses on an FL Studio version comparison between versions 12 and 20. Keep reading to discover some of the similarities and differences that both FL Studio versions possess.

  • To begin, the FL Studio 12 only has a version for Windows computers. It doesn't mean that Mac computers wouldn't be able to use it. However, if your system is a Mac, you might not exactly get the best out of the FL Studio 12. It might crash from time to time or hang while you’re trying to save your creation or do other crucial stuff. The FL Studio 20, on the other hand, comes with a version for Mac computers. It allows them to enjoy a seamless workflow on FL Studio.
  • When it comes to the bundle these two versions both offer, the FL Studio 12 comes with three bundles while FL Studio 20 comes with four. The fourth bundle on FL studio 20 grants access to a vast library of plugins that are most likely unavailable in FL Studio 12.
  • The multiple arrangement feature is entirely novel to FL studio. Image line introduced the multiple arrangement feature to the DAW through the FL Studio 20. It gives you the liberty to experiment with different arrangements. For instance, if you’re not sure if starting your project with drums or keyboard is excellent, you can create two different versions starting with both keyboard ad drums. Hence, you can gauge both versions to see which one you should stick to. However, FL Studio 12 doesn't have the capacity that allows for multiple arrangements. You can only create one version of your b
  • The graph editor feature is missing in action on the FL Studio 12. This feature allows you to easily adjust note parameters without going through the bureaucratic route that requires you to bring up the piano roll. But Image line brought back the feature to the FL Studio 20.
  • When it comes to music consolidation, the FL Studio 20 provides three easy methods to music consolidation. You can combine your playlist either through rendering and replacing a pattern, choosing your clips selection within a song, or consolidate your playlist per track. Unfortunately, these features are not available on FL Studio 12.

FL Studio 12 review

As a beatmaker, you’d agree with me that once you get a hand at how the FL Studio works, it simplifies your beat-making process. The fantastic features can inspire you for a new beat by just messing around with them.

I mean, that's how detailed it is. Since the inception of the FL Studio beat maker, where Image line released the first version in 1998, the FL Studio 12 seems to be a considerable improvement. Image line added quite a few new features to it, making the FL Studio a 12 the version to die for.

The first thing you should know about FL Studio is that the manufacturers released three editions/ bundles of the FL Studio There’s the fruity edition that’s basic, the producer edition that’s advanced, and for the producer, and the signature edition.

There's not much difference between the producer and signature edition. However, the three editions have varying subscription fees.

Now that you know that FL Studio versions come in three editions, let's look into the FL Studio 12 producer edition as it is the advanced edition of the FL Studio 12 DAW.


  • How Does it Work:
    The FL Studio 12 is similar to having a mixer but on your computer. Both beginners and professionals would find it easy to navigate the user interface. If your computer is a touchscreen, you will enjoy it more as it would feel as though you were mixing or creating your next hot beat on a physical mixer.
    Image line properly arranged the interface to easily locate all the loops, beats, etc., available to perform your magic on it. You can see information about the sound generator deployed in the project you're currently working on from the channel rack. To start any new project on the app, you need to go to the browser tab that sits pretty on the left side of the DAW.
    There, you’ll find all you need to work with to create the fire beat in your head. The browser tab contains a menu list like project files, instruments, presets, audio clips, and other things you’d need during your beat creation process.
    If you don't know where to start from, adopt some of the templates on this DAW. It also allows you to now add time signatures to your playlist and patterns. The team set up FL Studio 12 to make it easy for beginners to work with it efficiently.

  • Wide Loops and Sound Library:
    A fantastic feature of the FL Studio 12 software is its impressive lineup of sound and loops. Aside from the vast library with an endless collection of sounds and loops, every single sound comes with a unique touch. One would think that with the massive library of loops and sounds, the entire library would come off as shallow and repetitive. However, that's not the case at all. The team took their time to carefully curate every single loop and sound to make it unique and make a significant difference on any beat you come up with. As a result, it massively improves your creativity as you have a vast library of loops and sounds at your disposal to work with.
  • Free Tutorials:
    If you have issues with how to use the FL Studio to your advantage effectively or that you need to deepen your knowledge on how certain features on this DAW works, before you log on to YouTube, start by visiting the tutorials curated in video formats on this DAW. It opens you up to effectively utilizing this DAW to create unique beats.
  • Where it works best?
    The best platform to use FL Studio 12 is on your PCs and Windows Laptops. People with Mac laptops can also use this FL Studio version. With regards to the mobile version, FL Studio 12 is not available as a mobile version. However, what is available in the general FL Studio. Although it does seem to have potentials, it is not as comprehensive as when using it on a laptop. For instance, the synths on the FL Studio mobile version don't offer much. They are as basic as they can be.



  • It has a user-friendly interface that soaks you in on the first contact.
  • You can quickly learn to use it by simply exploring the DAW.
  • There's an expansive library of sounds and loops that boosts your creativity as a music producer.
  • This DAW has one of the most flexible mixers.


  • Because of the vast library, you might find scrolling through sound and loop previews quite tedious.

FL Studio 20 review

When brands celebrate birthdays, there seems to be a tradition to celebrate their birthdays with a new edition or version of their product. FL Studio jumped on the practice and released the FL Studio 20 to celebrate its 20th anniversary.

Although named FL Studio 20, you shouldn't assume that there is a version 19 because there isn't. the truth is, while they produced an FL Studio 12, they got ahead and created the FL Studio 20. So, usually, it would have been named FL Studio 13, but it got 20 attached to it in the spirit of celebrating the anniversary.

Furthermore, the FL Studio 20 has a 64-bit Mac version. Hence, you can install it on a Mac with ease. When we tested it on a Mac, it turned out to be perfect. It was slick with smooth operations. Unsurprisingly, it didn't crash or hang as it was created specifically for the Mac system. Loading Mac plugins on the FL Studio has never felt easy seamless until this version 20 came along.

Generally, we can call this DAW version an FL Studio 12 upgrade. The reason? Its features have been upgraded and improved since the FL Studio 12. Let’s check out these differences.


    The FL Studio 20 comes in four versions or editions. The basic fruity version, the producer version, the signature version, and the all-plugin version. Each version comes with varying price tags. Of course, you’ll be able to purchase the entire bundles in one.
    As expected, the producer and signature bundle are much higher in price because of how complex they are. The plugin version comes with all the juicy features required to produce your beats, but it also has many more plugins than the other bundles.
    When you get on the FL Studio 20, you'll realize the addition of this new feature. Multiple arrangements allow you have various versions of your playlist. It will enable you to experiment freely by creating alternative versions without ruining your initial arrangement or composition. You can also combine all the multiple arrangements into a single playlist as the FL Studio 20 allows you to consolidate audios in three ways. The first is to render and replace patterns, clips selection within a song and per track.
    Since this is the anniversary version, the Image line (the brain behind FL Studio) decided to upgrade the playlist in this version. Imagine line increased the number of tracks to have a maximum of 500 tracks, unlike previous versions. They also devised a method that prevents channels from cluttering. Concerning helping you declutter your playlist, the Image line added a new feature that allows you to hide your tracks. It makes the playlist looks a bit sane, so you can easily navigate the playlist without getting exhausted mentally.
    In FL Studio 20, Image-Line updated three plugins. They are the Fruity reverb 2, VXF Level Scaler, and the Slicex. The fruity reverb two plugins now have a modulation section to it, Slicex has new slicing and sends options, and the VXF level scaler is a new addition to the plugin list.



  • The Multiple arrangement feature makes your workflow on the FL Studio 20 seamless.
  • It comes with a special version for Mac.
  • It comes in four versions that fit any budget; the fruity version, producer version, signature version, and the plugin version.


  • The many additions to the playlist can make the UI look messy.

Last Words

As portrayed with the FL Studio 12 vs. 20 comparison, you’ll see that the FL Studio 20 is hands down a massive improvement from the FL Studio 12. It seems as though the FL Studio 20 was o the mission to give users features they probably never knew they needed.

It does not mean that the FL Studio is no longer helpful. It is still valid. However, the truth is, once you make a switch from FL Studio 12 to 20, you would never want to use the FL Studio 12 again. Nevertheless, both versions of the FL Studio DAW simplify the music creation process.

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