Following is something I did a few days ago for kicks. It's my first experiment in ambient electronic music.
I'm not sure which version it is they include with the Fender, but there's a couple versions of Ableton that come included with various products (the Novation Launchpad for example) that are a bit stripped back on the features from the full Live 8.They included a $500 program free with a $400 amp? If I could manage to find some kind of deal like that your list looks pretty reasonable.
The version of Ableton that's included is limited in the number of tracks and virtual instruments that you can use at any one time but it's still plenty powerful for me. The M-Audio interface also came with a limited version of ProTools which I've yet to install or experiment with.They included a $500 program free with a $400 amp? If I could manage to find some kind of deal like that your list looks pretty reasonable.
Excellent!I forgot about Reason. Probably perfect for getting into electronic music and learning to program synths. Sequencers are your best friend in electronic music.
I started learning synthesis in the computer. But I missed having knobs to turn and buttons to press instead of menus. Probably the biggest advantage of hardware. Software synths are getting pretty impressive now.
The ironic thing is that I try to make my synthesis sound like natural sounds and try to get away from sounding synthlike (like Tangerine Dream, ELP, prog rock synths) and like making organic sounds like sticks hitting things and industrial machinery.
Here's an example of what hardware synthesis can do. One take, no DAW or software except to record. Keep in mind this is a high end synth, and not typical of anything you could buy in GC or any other chain. Boutique cork sniffer synth.
@Dana I also find synth stuff far easier for me than guitar, even though I've been playing much much longer. I think it's because synth programming is more like composing than performing, at least when using sequencers and routing control signals. I love synths, and it's great to see other guitar players who also like using them. Best way to be a one man army of sound.