Sequencing can be carried out in both views simultaneously, to the user's taste. Other tweaks to the interface include small play buttons on the Playlist, Step Sequencer and Piano Roll, and dragging and dropping of instrument and effects presets from the Browser pane. For the next take, the 'save' button must be pressed again and the take saved before recording can begin. It just adds that bit of extra mouse work and felt much better where it was. Though this isn't something you'd want to do regularly, it confirms what I've found throughout my testing: This is, however, subject to the varying definitions of each version: Though lifetime free updates is an amazing deal, it seems to have forced Image Line into searching for other sources of income, hence the separate cost for all of their latest synths and effects.
That said, I'm sure plenty of users of other software packages out there would love to be able to get the latest version of their DAW at no extra cost!
The block view at the bottom half of the Playlist window is largely redundant in FL9, but has the potential to confuse new users! It's very freeing to be able to place clips without regard for horizontal track position. However, it seems to me that it's about time for Image Line to choose one direction or the other.
As it is, you can elect to hide the old boxes, but they are still the easiest way to quickly select from your pattern. But an odd implementation of audio recording means that FL9 can't really handle tracking with the same kind of intuitive ease as other sequencers.
One thing that initially attracted me to FL3 many years ago was how easy it was to get going, and this remains the case. Both the patches and their descriptions are randomly created: The Autogun soft synth combines randomly generated sounds with randomly generated descriptions of them. It's literally impossible to get caught up in tweaking parameters when there's nothing to tweak.
Easy to get started with, and easy to get good results fast. Plenty of bundled effects and samples. Relatively low price, with free upgrades. Cons Odd implementation of audio recording. The system of having two simultaneous Playlists could be confusing for new users.
It stumbles slightly over strange implementation of audio tracking and GUI, but its generous price and many bundled effects make the foibles worth working through. Free upgrades for existing users. Prices include VAT.