The best is what you're used to. I have been using fl studio since 2007. Now, it isnt considered the best DAW, but the trick is how much you know about the software. ANother problem is constant updates. You just need one version, really.
* Magix Samplitude Pro X3 Suite
* MOTU Digital Performer 9
* Presonus Studio One 3 Professional
Most of my production and engineering efforts are performed with Samplitude at this time. However, I really like Presonus' direction with the 3.5 update of Studio One and, since CPU performance has been greatly improved, I will probably use it more as time goes on.
For Windows users, especially those who are focused on music production, I believe Studio One is one of the best DAWs available; in terms of cost, features, workflow and expandability. Also, the development outlook for Studio One, IMO, is fairly optimistic.
However, for Mac users, I hear mixed opinions about Studio One's stability and would take that into consideration. With that said, IMO, Logic is overall a better value for Mac users.
My recommendation is to test out a few different DAW options and determine which one fits your needs, which will vary between individuals.
Currently using Reaper, fully happy with this DAW.
Totally suits my needs.
Tried lots of different trial versions of other DAW's before, but this one was very suitable for me.
Before I used Magix Music Studio (aka Samplitude), the $60 budget version, did what I wanted first, but bugged more and more, until I couldn't get things fixed anymore and needed to switch to a good DAW.
It's very nice indeed. However, it has it's limitations. Certainly for audio recording.
For Midi, it's working fine here on my Windows environment, but not fully working on my linux environment. The Vestige instrument doesn't load my VST's I want, which work fine in Windows.
It's nice to play with though.