The Red Bladder wrote:All sorts of wild speculation about why Reaper is both faster and has a smaller footprint and the reality is that there are many reasons
The biggest reason is likely not inherently because of a small team of long-time coders (there are benefits to that, but also small teams also put a limit on the amount of actual work that can get done), but is that performance and small footprint are valued by those developers and are prioritised.
I can't say much about ProTools, but know a bit about Logic, and I can tell you that the vast majority of the small team of Logic developers are the same ones that have been working on it for a long time. (Of course, with a company like Apple, you have a bunch of extra layers of management and "product owners" etc, and you have a bunch of large-company politics and structures you have to work within, which adds overhead).
For what it's worth, the app bundle size of Reaper 6 is 120, version Logic's current version of 1.5GB. Quite a difference! However, the actual main program binaries are not that different - Reaper is about 14 MB, Logic is about 36 MB. The difference is usually all kinds of other bundle resources, libraries and code to do other things. Reaper has something like 40 MB of icon files, for example. Logic has a whole bunch of framework code for all it's audio plugins, instruments and other things. And the size of Logic doesn't even begin to factor additional content such as impulse responses, drum samples, apple loop content, multisampled instruments and so on.
The more you want software to be able to do, generally speaking, the more code you need - and this has nothing as such to do with good code or bad code.
Reaper *is* efficient, and it is so not because it's a two man dev team, but because they are good at what they do, and they value efficiency, so it is integral to of all the code they write - and they have few other people to report to who might revise their objectives and targets at any given moment.
Reaper is also small because there are many things Reaper doesn't have, compared to other, more fully featured apps, which offer a lot more.
It also occupies a particular niche in the world of DAWs, and is a great product for what it is, and what it costs.