You wake up as the CEO of Propellerhead. What would you do?

This forum is for discussing Propellerhead's music software. Questions, answers, ideas, and opinions... all apply.
flexluthor
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Post 15 Mar 2019

Now I don't want to use Reason anymore because the CEO un-ironically used the term 'mansplain'. Shameful.

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Zac
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Post 15 Mar 2019

'Love Email'

That I can relate to :lol:

Great to hear from Ernst.
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CUBRICON
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Post 15 Mar 2019

bxbrkrz wrote:
15 Mar 2019
"You need to... You need to... You need to..."

Ok.
I think this beautiful thread is over. Mister Baguette won the day.
Sorry, I didn't mean to come on so strong :)

I honestly have no idea what I would do if I was CEO of Propellerhead. And as a user, I am perfectly happy with Reason as it is. I'm just thinking that if I WAS the CEO, I would try to get the product into the hands of young people because older folks my age probably are already set in their ways.

For example, besides Reason, I own Logic and a copy of Pro Tools 11 (which I never use, in fact, I uninstalled it from my computer). At this point, why would I want to switch to another DAW when Reason has all I need? Maybe I might update my Ableton license if I want to do performances, but I would still probably create in Reason. I don't like the Ableton interface.

I've been teaching college students for 10 years. Very few of them ever come in with Reason as a DAW that they use and as much as I tell them how much I love the program and demo it to them, our curriculum doesn't include it, so I teach them Logic, and later, they learn Pro Tools.

But the trend has been that every semester, more and more students come in with knowledge and usage of FL Studio.

I used to think FL was a joke, but if you look at their "power users" page, the list of producers is astounding. So, from a Marketing standpoint, young and impressionable teens and tweens are going to say "I want to make music like Artist X." because that artist on that list. They will think, "I need FL."

So, if I was the CEO, I would probably be overwhelmed and I probably would get annoyed by people telling me what "I need" to do, but my biggest goal would be to get Reason into the hearts and minds (and wallets) of the 16-26 year-old demographic.

Ernst, you don't need to do anything! at least not for me :), I can't think of anything Reason doesn't have that I need. I love the program and I appreciate you and the company. Thanks for giving us an amazing piece of software that allows us to make music!
-CUBRICON

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bxbrkrz
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Post 15 Mar 2019

CUBRICON wrote:
15 Mar 2019
bxbrkrz wrote:
15 Mar 2019
"You need to... You need to... You need to..."

Ok.
I think this beautiful thread is over. Mister Baguette won the day.
Sorry, I didn't mean to come on so strong :)

I honestly have no idea what I would do if I was CEO of Propellerhead. And as a user, I am perfectly happy with Reason as it is. I'm just thinking that if I WAS the CEO, I would try to get the product into the hands of young people because older folks my age probably are already set in their ways.

For example, besides Reason, I own Logic and a copy of Pro Tools 11 (which I never use, in fact, I uninstalled it from my computer). At this point, why would I want to switch to another DAW when Reason has all I need? Maybe I might update my Ableton license if I want to do performances, but I would still probably create in Reason. I don't like the Ableton interface.

I've been teaching college students for 10 years. Very few of them ever come in with Reason as a DAW that they use and as much as I tell them how much I love the program and demo it to them, our curriculum doesn't include it, so I teach them Logic, and later, they learn Pro Tools.

But the trend has been that every semester, more and more students come in with knowledge and usage of FL Studio.

I used to think FL was a joke, but if you look at their "power users" page, the list of producers is astounding. So, from a Marketing standpoint, young and impressionable teens and tweens are going to say "I want to make music like Artist X." because that artist on that list. They will think, "I need FL."

So, if I was the CEO, I would probably be overwhelmed and I probably would get annoyed by people telling me what "I need" to do, but my biggest goal would be to get Reason into the hearts and minds (and wallets) of the 16-26 year-old demographic.

Ernst, you don't need to do anything! at least not for me :), I can't think of anything Reason doesn't have that I need. I love the program and I appreciate you and the company. Thanks for giving us an amazing piece of software that allows us to make music!
-CUBRICON
If you want you should know about Ton Roosendaal, chairman of the Blender Foundation. Nothing to do with Reason, it is just a way to compare different people and their vision. Both of them are the heart of the products they sell, from the start.
Years of keeping the cruise ship on target, no matter the weather outside. A machine that will keep moving forward, on target, no matter what, years and years after they and their teammates are no longer in control anymore ;)

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splangie
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Post 16 Mar 2019

Would I wake up next to my old lady or his? I guess I should ask, would i wake up next to his partner or my old lady? Normally if my old lady is there I wake her up. I'm not sure about his partner, so just wondering. I won't say what I might do first if I my old lady wasn't there but next I go to the toilet. I am pretty darn regular.

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Re8et
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Post 16 Mar 2019

bxbrkrz wrote:
15 Mar 2019

Years of keeping the cruise ship on target, no matter the weather outside. A machine that will keep moving forward, on target, no matter what, years and years after they and their teammates are no longer in control anymore ;)
Also Pure data founder is a careful person, he knows staying open source was key for its invention.
People at Patchblock copied the editor, made one of their own, set sail, abandon ship. Choices.

Not like Richard...

I like the idea of waking up one morning being the CEO of Virgin Intergalactic, with a starfleet ready to board for Venus cruise tour, and a millions lottery ticket hidden in the most massive treasure hunt game the history has ever known...
then pump up the valium before launch, get on my tiny isle in the sky, and ... why THE HELL THERE'S A CATgirl on my TABLE DANCING in miniskirt?? Then look back at when I was young and think of that first office on the eleventh floor, Oxford rd... Oooh, good memories... :lol: :lol:

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MannequinRaces
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Post 16 Mar 2019

Thanks for stopping by Ernst! I enjoyed reading your post. Kinda surprised I didn’t see a guitar in your area or a midi controller on your desk. I can relate though to looking at my gear and asking myself why I don’t use it more. Have a good day. Love the communication.

fullforce
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Post 16 Mar 2019

antic604 wrote:
15 Mar 2019
Well, damn! :o

It's the 1st time I see a response from DAW developer's CEO. Respect & thanks! <3
Yeah. Makes you wonder why he killed their own forum, huh?
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Zac
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Post 16 Mar 2019

fullforce wrote:
16 Mar 2019
antic604 wrote:
15 Mar 2019
Well, damn! :o

It's the 1st time I see a response from DAW developer's CEO. Respect & thanks! <3
Yeah. Makes you wonder why he killed their own forum, huh?
I see it more as an indication of how well ReasonTalk is doing as an independent forum.
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bxbrkrz
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Post 16 Mar 2019

Re8et wrote:
16 Mar 2019
bxbrkrz wrote:
15 Mar 2019

Years of keeping the cruise ship on target, no matter the weather outside. A machine that will keep moving forward, on target, no matter what, years and years after they and their teammates are no longer in control anymore ;)
Also Pure data founder is a careful person, he knows staying open source was key for its invention.
People at Patchblock copied the editor, made one of their own, set sail, abandon ship. Choices.

Not like Richard...

I like the idea of waking up one morning being the CEO of Virgin Intergalactic, with a starfleet ready to board for Venus cruise tour, and a millions lottery ticket hidden in the most massive treasure hunt game the history has ever known...
then pump up the valium before launch, get on my tiny isle in the sky, and ... why THE HELL THERE'S A CATgirl on my TABLE DANCING in miniskirt?? Then look back at when I was young and think of that first office on the eleventh floor, Oxford rd... Oooh, good memories... :lol: :lol:
Miller Puckette? OK.
Dieter Döpfer is another passionate entrepreneur I admire. Eurorack. Wow!

Aerond
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Post 16 Mar 2019

I would resign and leave the place for someone who actually knows what has to be done :D

2chris
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Post 16 Mar 2019

This is a fun thought experiment. I work for an investment company where we've struggle on whether to change direction on an established company brought into the group. I'm happy with the direction of Propellerheads, but I would love the challenge of CEO because I have a ton of ideas I'd discuss with the team. I kept it to 8 main ideas I would work around, because I could just keep adding more and it would bore most people.

First, Propellerheads give a full-featured product at a great price, and I'd hope not to screw up what Ernst and the team have accomplished. I started out on Reason 1 (and Rebirth!) because it was an amazing jumping off platform for me where nothing else so effortlessly allowed me to make and collaborate on music and enjoy the process. It just made sense and was fun.

With 10.3 coming to address performance, I say it's time to be weird and amazing for a while, but we'd have to define a direction that everybody buys into. I'd rally the stakeholders by asking every employee, strong channel partner, and shareholders if they think we are a company that has built products, or are we platform company. Microsoft has had this problem, and their new CEO has been going back and forth on developing products versus platforms where it has hurt some teams there. Are we better off with amazing instruments/sound sources/FX we open up to doing mass market products that play in everybody's environment (plus iOS and Android too?), or are we the Platform of the future where our products go into it, and we incorporate other company's products (a DAW, Store, Content Organizer)? My hunch is most would say it's a platform, and products comes as part of that mission. That's what I would lean toward, but I say this as someone ignorant of any intimate knowledge of the company.

Ernst has major balls I wouldn't have as CEO. For example, his push for iOS development could push the userbase numbers up, or could be a poor use of resources. A good CEO analyzes risk, and I applaud him for pushing forward. I think I'd be more conservative, and these are the main items I'd start with...

1. Market saturation is a problem we need to work on. The future depends on our ability to grow the userbase, because right now we are a mature company that risks getting lost in a flooded market without material growth. Let's talk to marketing to do research. It's time to ponder on a stripped down FREE version you can add pieces to rather than a demo/intro/full reason option. We need to contrast that against also (or only) having a fully "cloud" subscription option like Adobe Creative Cloud without alienating existing users, where it's all you can eat (everything company owned IP included) plus storage to link all your devices and co-producers, with no large upfront pricing, and then we trickle out new sound libraries each month so you feel like you're getting something. Get in cheap, stay in for a monthly price, and props get reliable monthly earnings. If both areas are a bad ideas once reviewed after polling the employees and board once we did the initial research, scratch that and let's bundle Reason Intro with every OEM that will listen to us. Buy sound cards, digital pianos, guitars, keyboards, or all kinds of stuff and you get Reason Intro for free and a $10 propellerheads store credit or something too. You can always run more promos to get it into the public's hands more too. More installs brings viability for partnerships, and more online store sales for people that could have been jumping on different DAW platform without a free entry point.

2. They are missing an opportunity with sample library development. Large vendors are trying to make their own samplers because they are scared of piracy (Eastwest did it with Play, VSL, SpitFire is starting one, etc). Sound Iron was a great starting point to show they can develop strong relationship to accomplish this. Reason offers a community of users willing to pay for a good product, a store that's efficient, a product that's not plagued with piracy, and it has a mature subscription model. Why not turn NNXT into the Kontakt Player of the future? Be the indy developer friendly company that NI is not, and it will spread like wild fire. Get the sales in the web store, the users like added choice, and it helps toward market saturation because everyone will know NNXT if they see products on shelves at retail stores that say "comes with NNXT player and/or Reason Intro" or something similar. I don't see what you have to lose here. Reason needs those kind of people on the platform (users and devs). If successful, It adds future promotion potential for bundles too, and it diversifies earnings because you're making a cut of sales that don't take as much precious time away from internal teams.

3. "We’re driven by a dream—of a world where anyone and everyone can make music. A world where technology helps bring your musical visions to life." Do a viability study on a partnership program where select schools get licenses and a learning guide. If it works, grow it. Music education is a huge industry, and parents spend money. Plus, it's a research opportunity that a school might be able to get a grant underwritten for. It's kind of going off track, but it's worthy of consideration. The reason instruments sound great where it would make it fun and interactive for students, plus the hardware model encourages learning how actual hardware actually gets setup.

4. The sequencer and midi players must evolve. Chord recognition. Ghost notes. Chord drop down menus. Improved automation. Machine learning/recognition. More player type racks for midi. I'm not a fan of FL Studio, but it's piano roll is amazing. Studio One's recent update addresses the market heading this way, and Ableton Live has played catchup mostly too. I could go on and on and it would sound like I'm complaining, but I'm not. Most of this is really hard and time consuming to do. The sequencer is more than adequate, but it just has the most room for growth of any part of Reason (IMO). I get that It's not sexy to new users, but Reason is falling behind here. Unique features could attract users. With how products like Scaler and the Captain Plugins have taken off, the market wants this kind of stuff and it goes into the potential of it being a learning tool as well. Props did great on the players already included, and I know that the team can hit a home-run here if it were a priority.

5. With CV's, combinator, and patching already in Reason I'd be pondering on how we take advantage of the Eurorack synths craze (Bitwig re-thought the platform to accommodate modularity, OEM's are releasing hardware) - how do we ride Complex1 and future sound sources into driving a modular revolution in reason that people notice? I don't know the answer, but I'd say lets have the team talk on that regularly, while trying to partner with vendors doing it with hardware to find a common ground.

6. We need to keep growing awareness of what Reason can do. It can do more than what most people realize it can do. In addition to continuing with more great tutorials that show off the software, I'd find more ways to foster relationships with musicians and social influencers that have a music producing audience. Propellerheads already do this, and I'd just say keep it up and push hard here. Propellerheads seems to have real people that care. I can't underscore how making people feel welcome on your platform builds a coalition around it, and it makes the user proud to buy the license to support it. Look at this forum and how people here (mostly!) love them for being involved.

7. I'd find a way to convince the public and teams at Propellerheads that reason's development is always predicated on the fact that it is an instrument as well as a tool and a platform. At the end of the day, it can so many things, or it can simply be your instrument to perform with or learn to play on. Any new features or devices need to remember this at their core. Ableton Live has been incredibly successful with this approach (great looper, stability, performance mode) which encouraged some creative people to do things with it the developers never imagined.

8. Finally, I would rethink how sounds get organized within Reason, and foster ways to build a community behind presets built for Reason instruments by improving the browser and combinator. If you can browse and buy sounds in the browser within Reason (almost like Adobe's Stock photos?) it could increase sales and be useful to creators. Another way to accomplish this is that you could re-think combinator to be more like NKS with all the great taxonomy and 3rd party integration that ties into the browser. With VST support now, you could be a great source for buying 3rd party presets and also libraries for VST and/or NNXT - and you'd be one of the only options with a good demo because your platform is secure where 3rd parties could trust you for an expensive library. Yamaha's SoundMondo shows that even hardware OEMS know this is the future where users can share, rate, and talk about presets. Cableguys did this with their plugins too, and it's beautiful way to extend the social aspect of the platform with preset ratings and comments in the community preset section. This is a huge growth area that could drivers users, revenue, and make existing customers happy.

two shoes
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Post 16 Mar 2019

antic604 wrote:
15 Mar 2019
Loque wrote:
15 Mar 2019


Yea, guess he got us by our balls... ;D
With non-transferrable REs you got that right. I've like 800EUR in there (and counting)... :lol: :mrgreen:
i'm in way deeper than you and while i've never had more fun making music there are times when some of the decisions props make have me wondering if i've made a big mistake and wonder if that private equity majority stake is ultimately the one driving the bus . i just hope Reason is still around in something like it's present form but with most of the major issues addressed a decade from now - feels like it could very easily go either way to me.

Ostermilk
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Post 16 Mar 2019

ernstnathorst wrote:
15 Mar 2019
Well, if I interpret this as you guys guessing what my work days actually look like, at least some of it was right on the money.
Was it the "enjoy a spliff" part proposed by the OP?

:geek: :mrgreen:

mashers
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Post 17 Mar 2019

I would trawl ReasonTalk for all the user requested features, prioritise them, then start making them happen.

Gulale
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Post 17 Mar 2019

At first it won't happen. But just in case it happens I will shoot myself.
Gulale aka Bereket

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SebAudio
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Post 17 Mar 2019

There is a reason I’m not a CEO : I just don’t have the required capabilities.
I could tell you what _my_ dream Reason would be but what I really want is to be amazed by the next features the Props will add to Reason or a new product.

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Jackjackdaw
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Post 17 Mar 2019

I would make Reason easy to crack so that teenagers in their bedrooms start using it early and then then use it forever more cus it's what they know, probably paying for it when they get older and grow a conscience or cus they go pro.

I would say to my gaping mouthed collegues, It didn't do Ableton or Adobe any harm.

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Flavolous
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Post 17 Mar 2019

ernstnathorst wrote:
15 Mar 2019

We’re thinking about starting an AMA on Instagram (don’t know when!), so if you want to help us kick that off, send in some questions on this topic or anything else you'd like to find out and I will try my best to answer.

/Ernst

My "office" (actually a desk in the landscape like everybody else's). That thing sticking up from the backpack is just a baguette, OK?
Does your cat get dibs on the lovely yellow furniture in the office ? :D

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jam-s
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Post 17 Mar 2019

Jackjackdaw wrote:
17 Mar 2019
I would make Reason easy to crack so that teenagers in their bedrooms start using it early and then then use it forever more cus it's what they know, probably paying for it when they get older and grow a conscience or cus they go pro.

I would say to my gaping mouthed collegues, It didn't do Ableton or Adobe any harm.
No need to make it easily crackable. Just put out a free and basic version of Reason that just includes the rack, sequencer, and mixer plus a very basic set of rack devices. Then put all additional rack devices (like Thor, the echo, Europa, etc.) into the shop for reasonable prices (a few bucks each).
If you're in Aachen, come and visit us at the Voidspace.

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Flavolous
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Post 17 Mar 2019

jam-s wrote:
17 Mar 2019
Jackjackdaw wrote:
17 Mar 2019
I would make Reason easy to crack so that teenagers in their bedrooms start using it early and then then use it forever more cus it's what they know, probably paying for it when they get older and grow a conscience or cus they go pro.

I would say to my gaping mouthed collegues, It didn't do Ableton or Adobe any harm.
No need to make it easily crackable. Just put out a free and basic version of Reason that just includes the rack, sequencer, and mixer plus a very basic set of rack devices. Then put all additional rack devices (like Thor, the echo, Europa, etc.) into the shop for reasonable prices (a few bucks each).
I actually think bypassing all these. Reason is the perfect example of how hardware works outside the box. I think students learning how connect pieces of kit together and understanding the logic behind signal flow would absolutely love the visual feedback in Reason and the opportunity to reverse engineer some setups.

If Reason was offered to High school/College/university students at a discounted rate as part of their course they would learn so much theory for sound engineering from it and these kind of partnerships could prove fruitful for Props. I've noticed many Universities and Colleges here in Britain teach using Logic & Pro Tools with more of them adapting Ableton more recently. But I honestly feel everybody who learns Reason usually will find it easy to work in other DAWs; furthermore (call this confirmation bias, and it kind of is but...) a lot of folk who I've met who produce all tell me they started out on Reason but moved on to other programs back at version 5. I honestly think Reason is one of the easiest to learn and there lye some real opportunities for Props to capitalise on.

daisky
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Joined: 18 May 2018

Post 17 Mar 2019

On the chance you are still reading, Ernst, please give us that sexy resolution/interface upgrade everyone has wanted since forever. Arturia did a great job updating how their V collection looks on 4k screens. Please do the same and I will sell my Logic license and go all-in on reason in an instant.

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QVprod
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Post 17 Mar 2019

Flavolous wrote:
17 Mar 2019

If Reason was offered to High school/College/university students at a discounted rate...
It is actually and has been for years.

Multi-seat license for institutions $2,000 USD for 10 seats (though no RE access)


Student/Teacher price $300 ($100 cheaper) for full version
https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail ... n-download

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jam-s
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Post 18 Mar 2019

Good Luck! wrote:
18 Mar 2019
What says about this service? Will help? I need to convert mp3 to flac converter [spam link removed]
I'm not getting what this has to do with the thread. But I want to add that converting from a lossy format (like MP3) to a lossless format (like FLAC) is pointless.
If you're in Aachen, come and visit us at the Voidspace.

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ScuzzyEye
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Post 18 Mar 2019

jam-s wrote:
18 Mar 2019
I'm not getting what this has to do with the thread. But I want to add that converting from a lossy format (like MP3) to a lossless format (like FLAC) is pointless.
Good spot. Turns out they were a link spammer. Dealt with now. :)

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