Are You Serious?!

This forum is for discussing Propellerhead's music software. Questions, answers, ideas, and opinions... all apply.
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Post 19 Jun 2018

When I draw points by dragging the pencil tool, they all show up as expected on the snap resolution I have set.

When I let go of the mouse button, it only gives me the last point and erases the rest?! I have to click each and every single one or disable a nonintuitive "clean up automation" option to leave all the points I want?!

When I want to know the value of an automated knob sweep or something at a certain song position (because the line drawn for that manipulation won't intuitively tell me that by hovering on it), now none of the controls I automate will actually move as expected unless the song is playing?! I have to set an awkward tiny loop at the song position I want to analyze?! WHAT??

Really guys, seriously. Music can be a struggle. Anyone serious about this craft knows it isn't just a sit down and make a great song sort of thing. It takes work and a lot of that work is just finding that melody or that idea, then capturing it. Coming up with that hook, that riff, that rhythm, etc. That is the struggle of music, but not this. This is absurd.

Here's the pitch I guess.
"Hey you hip swell kiddy-o's, howsabout a groovy little program. We built it in a way that makes sense to our vague understanding of the finest affordable compute-a-trons, and if you can't figure out why it works the way it does then that's your fault. It's up to you to outsmart how intentionally frustrating and counterproductive it is and manage to accomplish what you want. Like a puzzle that gets in the way of making music, because we just had to get the thing out the door so we could eat this month, alright? Whaddaya want, huh? What's that look for. It's better than nothing, you little brats! Buy! Buy now! C'mon, what are you waiting for, kids? Get back over here and buy, alright? Don't make me come over there!"
On August 31st of this year, I am changing my password to this forum to a random string that I won't write down and retiring completely from the ecosystem. You can feel free to mercy ban me right now. I welcome it. It's been real, and by real I mean a real pain this past year or two. No hard feelings to any of you, just keep on keeping on in your own way how you want to. Nothing wrong with that. I'm done. I am not motivated to post here again, I want to do something else with my time and focus on positive things. The topic this place is built on just generally angers and upsets me now because I am not ignorant to how blindingly easy the work involved in writing all these improvements into this program really is. Seriously, the program is light on code. To mildly exaggerate, it's like a free money machine of a few hard-coded values in a few written lines and mostly graphics to wow the user. Seeing is believing and all that. To some degree all software is like that, but in this case it's just a dirty trick you pay for and I feel insulted I ever got duped into purchasing this thing.

How much time have I wasted in just setting up some nonsense that the next person who opens the project (or me after a couple weeks of not hitting tab) can't make heads or tails of the patch and it just ends up as a giant, unmanageable mangle of make pretend wires? That isn't useful to me. Meanwhile, what about the music. What about efficiently creating my idea and working with a flow from focus to focus.

As clever as I can be, it all comes down to outsmarting the very dumb software. And no matter how clever I am, I can't and shouldn't be required to undo the claustrophobic boundaries of possibility in the program. They have us paying for a product that then forces us to effectively outsource their feature requests. Desperately trying to string things together in vain, trying to do something almost kind of sort of. In the end it costs hundreds more than other programs when you convert time and energy to monetary value. Here's a clue I picked up on years ago: no other DAWs are doing this stuff because it is an unsatisfying mess that prioritizes a slow pace, rigid methods, methodical process, bad practice, and isolationism. These things are contradictory to the way music is made -- quicker pace, flexible methods, macro-based process, best practice, and collaboration.

To me, the difference is other DAWs are actually selling you something and making efforts to increase value, this one is simply "coming up with something" to show you that is visually different every year (flashy ooh wow graphics and sparse amounts of code inside a couple instruments) to stay on life support. That's why a lot of people are leaving and only keeping this thing as a sound maker or nested RE host.

The Company
As for Propellerhead, charging money for this product in any capacity other than voluntary donations should be a crime. The retail MSRP for full version is $129 based on how few changes get included, not over $300 based on what their marketing team came up with. I think everyone who pays to upgrade feels that at some point (what did I pay for). Brand value is not built through endless sales and dirt cheap upgrades, brand value is slashed and gutted by that strategy.

The driving force behind why Subway is tanking as a restaurant chain is because they promoted their sandwiches at $5 for too long when the sandwich was actually worth more than that. Now, they can't get people in the door because their prices are "higher" rather than artificially deflated. It's worth noting that people aren't in the market for bread now, they're into gluten free. The market changed and left their business model behind. This may seem silly comparing sandwiches and DAWs, but this could be another Subway situation, only in the audio world instead.

By the way, point upgrades to Cubase are under $100 and they include a bunch of improvements worth paying for. This whole "it's better because it's free" thing is complete bias in favor of poverty driven motives. Anybody who has little means at their disposal can become very defensive of their decisions, for want of having any choice in the matter. I get that. But therein lies part of the problem: Propellerhead is a poor man's brand; like knock offs in Asia that almost fool the eye. How can they leverage themselves up with no revenue. Where there's a will, there is a way. Maybe.

Want to build a brand Propellerhead? Actually build a product. I dare you. I have absolutely no "reason" to trust you, so I'm not coming back. But for the sake of everyone else, I hope you actually get it together.

Trouble is, I do not believe that you can. You would have by now.
:reason: :ignition: :re: :refillpacker: Enhanced by DataBridge v5

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Post 19 Jun 2018


2011 iMac i7; 24 GB RAM; OSX Sierra; Nektar LX 49; MOTU Microbook

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Post 19 Jun 2018

edit: Sorry, this was rude. Best of luck wherever you find yourself, hopefully you can be happy and productive there.
Last edited by esselfortium on 23 Jun 2018, edited 3 times in total.

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Post 19 Jun 2018

As someone whos using Reason for less than 3 years i recognise alot of truths in that rant. I think that it is often easy for people who have been honing they're skills in this software since the near beginning to sometimes forget how infuriating and complex this software can be to develop a realistic workflow and undertstand and even remember how difficult it is to recall how many different choices there are to do the same thing ...take into account the muliple instruments effects rack extensions , programming and wiring...... and those choices muliply .
It takes alot longer to learn this workflow than in any other daw cause you really have to learn every way there is of doing something cause not knowing every way will slow you down more than knowing every way of doing different things.
Setting up patches, templates, refills and memorising the vast factory soundbank will add more time still.
The part of the rant i can identify with is that whilst constantly trying to get to grips with all this ( and it takes a long time) Where is the music? and.. what relevance does any of it have to music?
As far as i can tell ....none. Unless youve been with the software from the start you have to kill youself commiting its many hiden tricks and oddities to long term memory and that includes being able to flip the rack and understand the signal flow and wiring invioved in the most complex of combinators and leaning all the different ways to fatten up vaious sounds Until you master this there is no point in writing music cause reason will always defeat you and musical ideas and concepts that you have will be lost faster than you have time to remember them.
You have to learn all the complicated stuff and concepts needed so that our just doing em without thinking...... cause if your thinking about this stuff your not thinking about music so your self defeating your whole purpose. In Reason you have persist and force a workflow that isn't initally there and i think you have to spend along time being counterproductive to arrive at being productive . Its easier to become productive faster in probably every other daw

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Post 19 Jun 2018

I'll sometimes request an extra side of gluten.

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Post 19 Jun 2018

Whilst I think there are some prescient points about the software here, I'm having a seriously hard time figuring out whether you are angry at Reason, ReasonTalk, music software in general or all of the above.
singer/songwriter with electronic tendencies

Reason 10 & REs / Ableton Live / Nord Stage 2 / Komplete Kontrol S61 / Moog Grandmother / Eurorack / Launchpad / Guitars, drums, toys

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Post 19 Jun 2018

I understand your extremely frustrated and it sounds like you've given this DAW your best shot and it just isn't for you; but I gotta ask, why are you waiting until August 31st to completely cut ties? The message is loud and clear you are ready to move on.
(I'm not hating or anything like that, just curious.)
Last edited by decoder on 19 Jun 2018, edited 1 time in total.

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Post 19 Jun 2018

There is no perfect DAW but some are more perfect for any given individual. I hope you find a set of tools that works for your way of working. Personally, I get on with Reason - probably because I don't edit much. I can't see myself switching now. I do hope they thrive as a company for years to come and keep allowing me to open my 1.0 songs in the most recent version. There is a lot that is good about this software for me and many others. I can capture ideas very quickly and have never lost work due to a crash in 16 years. It is cool to open up the very first piece I wrote in the latest version. My 4-track tapes are sitting in a box with no way to play them. My Juno-106, MC-202, and TR-808 are long gone - sold when I needed cash. Reason isn't perfect but there is still a lot that makes it great (for me). Good luck...

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Post 19 Jun 2018

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Post 19 Jun 2018

Next time write a longer post, yours is too short. :roll:
buy BTC

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Post 20 Jun 2018

I used Cubase for many years. Left it and got a new really productive musical life.
Not a bad idea to change DAW if you dont like it.
I started to use Tracktion 2 after Cubase, with Reason 3 as companion.

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Post 20 Jun 2018

Raveshaper wrote:
19 Jun 2018
When I draw points by dragging the pencil tool, they all show up as expected on the snap resolution I have set.

When I let go of the mouse button, it only gives me the last point and erases the rest?! I have to click each and every single one or disable a nonintuitive "clean up automation" option to leave all the points I want?!
What's your setting in Preferences / Automation cleanup level?

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Post 20 Jun 2018

It sounds like you are looking at it from a very technical and software side, which may be making you see Reason with the wrong lens.

Can you open it up and make music with an old school pseudo-rack style layout, some core instruments, samplers, and machines that are often easy to tinker and learn the basics of making music. Add a midi instrument that can actually play them and your point about the automation becomes like your looking for a reason to hate the program.

The big guys that know the ins and outs and are make RE's+VST's make reason a very powerful tool. Hell I was watching the making of the "Genesis" album and the cuts were a 10 minute process to make 1 cut. Reason gets digital editing just right enough, given learning to deal with quirks (all DAW's have them), that chops are easy enough and even butter smooth if your performer hits em 1 take Drake style.

It would be cool to give us technical constraints or if your under an NDA, maybe discuss your alternative methods in what you think can be done to "bad code". Post some code maybe? Instead of waiting till Aug 31, why don't you take a break and maybe start writing your own DAW. Who knows, that's how Reaper was formed essentially right?

That gif I saw you made of the grouped sliders. That was sick! Maybe if you shoot Pheads up, they might add that to their official version, or ask to see how much you could get for it?

I don't know, but you have some good smooth program ideas that every programmer wishes they can add all features and have a working DAW but its not that easy. I get like the guys at Pheads weren't expecting Reason to become even as big as it is now. The Big Cheese didn't hire enough programmers and with the capability to do it quick. Some poor coder could be at Pheads right now running the code trying to figure out where he left a comma out, or they just don't have the drive to please us guys who use the program and are vocal about it.

It was fun Rave!
-Off to make more music now.

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Post 20 Jun 2018

Raveshaper wrote:
19 Jun 2018
That's why a lot of people are leaving and only keeping this thing as a sound maker
This I agree with. Reason is a cool sound making instrument but only a true die-hard would say it's a good DAW. Every time I open up Reason after being in Bitwig for a while I always feel a little shocked at how dated it feels. Still, Propellerhead do know how to code a good instrument so it does have that going for it.
Reason 10 // Bitwig 2 // Logic Pro X // UAD // Soundtoys // Vintage Hardware

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Post 20 Jun 2018

how can you be so grumpy just for a few first world problems?

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Post 20 Jun 2018

We’ve all been there. It can be a frustrating process whatever tools you choose so my advice would be to use more than one DAW. They each have different strengths and weaknesses and inspire in different ways. The truth is that music production has never been cheaper or more accessible so take advantage of that. Use Ableton one week and Reason the next if you like. Or use multiple DAWs in combination.

Nobody is forcing us to pick one set of tools and dogmatically stick to them. By all means “play the field” with your music software!

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Post 20 Jun 2018

To the OP : When the snap is set to 1bar in the sequencer , the automation points disappear , regardless of how many u have drawn. Set it to at least 8th/16th/32 to be able to take advantage of those points. Hope this helps.
PS: They should seriously look into the efficiency of the programme. Other than that it works well for me.


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Post 20 Jun 2018

my 2 cents on Reason and other DAWs:

Reason has the best Audio timestretch/ptchshift so far. No need for Melodyne. NI Maschine in the latest version comes close to that but it's not what I call a DAW. On controller integration Maschine and Ableton with Push shine. Bitwig comes with a touchscreen interface. Reaper has a highly customizable GUI and a programming language built in to control the whole software. Ableton comes with Max4Live.

At the end I always come back to Reason. I like the analog-style look and feel of the Rack. I can use all of my VSTs and I can control the main mixer by the Console 1 hardware. I'm still on Version 9.5 because I don't need all that new synths, sounds and players

I don't know where the Propellerheads are headed to (a nice pun, isn't it). It seems like they are just stepping out of their market niche with their own VSTs. I hope they will bring workflow improvements in Reason 11 or even 10.5 and if they do so I will upgrade immediately.

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Post 20 Jun 2018

dandandaaan wrote:
19 Jun 2018
Whilst I think there are some prescient points about the software here, I'm having a seriously hard time figuring out whether you are angry at Reason, ReasonTalk, music software in general or all of the above.

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Post 20 Jun 2018

I mean if you've found another DAW that's gonna actually make you happy and allow you to make music then I guess that's all that matters. We obviously have different needs. Maybe it's because I still vividly remember making music in the 90s on an Atari, with General MIDI. But I'm perpetually in awe of what's possible these days. Even little groovebox apps on my iPad amaze me. That I can write a decent sounding groove in the garden on a thin piece of metal and glass is just...the stuff I used to dream of as a kid. And then I come back to Reason 10 and I've got cables I can put anywhere, a bunch of great looking and sounding instruments, and I'm still excited. There are way more things I *can* do then can't. Absolutely I have gripes and frustrations, but as someone who's been making music for most of my 34 years alive, and someone who uses the software every day for work...I think if they were absolute show stoppers, I would stop using it. But ya know that's just me! Your results clearly vary!

I would hope that in all your months or years of using Reason it's at least allowed you to make SOME music. If it hasn' might not just be the platform that's at fault. And I'm not saying that to be a jerk, but as someone who's constantly re-evaluating their own workflow and has come to realise how much time I've wasted on minutiae at the expense of *actually* creating. We can have legitimate issues (and certainly there are a few). But we've also gotta be able to take a step back and look at how lucky we are to live in a time with so many ways of making music, before we start going in with the microscope and getting hung up on what's not right. Because that mindset will follow you, whatever platform you end up on. Anyway shame you had to make an exit but best of luck anyway. To greener pastures I guess...

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Post 20 Jun 2018

I feel your pain regarding using Reason to actually make tracks. It is in real need of some fundamental workflow improvements, but I just don't think you are going to get them, so if you've found a DAW you prefer I think jumping ship makes sense.

Compared to Ableton this is a tiny pond populated by amateurs and hobbyists, and as such there is little pressure on Propellerhead to improve the workflow. They just need to roll out new Rack Extensions to keep the money coming in. Most people (here at least) are happy with Reason so there is little pressure on Propellerhead to up their game.

Propellerhead need to decide if they want Reason to be a modern DAW or a host for REs. At the moment they are doing nothing to push it in either direction but I think they will have to very soon. It seems like many people are leaving Reason at the moment and I'm sure they are not unaware of that fact.

If you do find a magical alternative that does everything you need, I'd love to know what it is. I'm thinking more and more that Ableton with some Reason on the side is the best option at the moment.

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Post 20 Jun 2018

The pressure on Propellerhead to up their game, obviously, is that the better their product competes with other music software, the more users they attract and the more money their business makes.

We look forward to hearing which DAW you choose, Raveshaper. I often think I'd like to try the non-linear playground of Live or Bitwig, but I have enough fun in Reason that I still haven't bought either. I agree that different software that makes you think in different ways is a good idea.

You don't have to be completely mental to post here, but it helps.

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Post 20 Jun 2018

Undistraction wrote:
20 Jun 2018
I'm thinking more and more that Ableton with some Reason on the side is the best option at the moment.
Or just get Bitwig.

Regarding the OP's post - I definitely agree with you on the frustrations related to sequencer, automation, etc. which are in particular painful if you've worked in other DAWs. But I can see that this is in addition to your frustration with rack, cables and the whole 'virtual studio' metaphor... For me, the enjoyment of being able to use the latter - easily identifiable devices, patching, overwhelming mixing console - compensates my dissatisfaction with the sequencer. If you hate both, then don't wait for end of August and spend those 2 months to learn some other DAW :)
Bitwig 2 // Reason 10 // Cubase Pro 10 @ Lenovo Y730 15'' i7-8750h
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other stuff - "Psytrance in Bitwig Studio" tutorial

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Post 20 Jun 2018

I came to the conclusion a couple of years ago and don't think I'm wrong that Reason wasn't designed to be like a conventional daw if a daw at all. It was designed to just emulate a rack mount in a real studio and flip to the back to wire devices together and create weird and wonderful sounds and that is a very powerful thing and can amaze people once you know what you're doing.

However, with it being software, you needed to be able to sequence too. So it had a sequencer. They never intended to implement VST so all the software devices were designed very clearly and the GUI was beautiful (in my opinion....Thor, Subtractor, Dr.Rex, Malstom, Redrum etc). The Subtractor is one of the best soft synths to learn synthesis on. They should just improve it a bit (add FX, a Mod Matrix, make it stereo and hasn't it got an aliasing problem?) and then they should make it a VST like they have now with Europa. I think it could be excellent for colleges and universities all over the world to buy to teach subtractive synthesis on. Anyway, back to what I was saying....the Redrum was kind of an emulation of an 808, Kong - the MPC, Dr.Octo.Rex a drum loop player with more features etc.

What's happened though, is 6 brought audio which effectively made it now, an official digital Audio workstation. Then I think Propellerhead had been stuck in their ways for ages and then were (I think) reluctant to implement a lot of the features Reason needed in order for it to compete professionally against the big giants such as Pro Tools, Cubase, Logic and FL Studio. There could have also been coding issues and stuff as I saw recently they were advertising for a C++ developer to join their team.

Now though, they're really starting to bring Reason up to par in my opinion. They've implanted VST (which they never intended), really improved the SDK with sample loading etc and the Rack Extension format has grown tremendously over the years. Then introducing PDC, the Players, Pitch-Correction, Audio to Midi, Themes. It still needs a lot of features though and a lot of simple things seem to be missing, like muting notes in the midi editor lol! and I couldn't even select all the clips on one track the other day and fairly certain you can't without zooming out and using the mouse, you can 'Select All' as in all tracks and devices but not just the clips on one track, can you? quite tedious to zoom out, hover over with the mouse and then zoom back again.

Anyway, as frustrating as Reason can be, there's something about it I just really love and I think that one day Reason will be up to par with Logic and Pro Tools. Maybe by Reason 12 as the other softwares out there don't really have a lot more they can implement really can they? so all's Reason can do now is catch up. However, Reason will always have the 'Back of the Rack' that other DAW's don't.

Propellerhead Reason 10.3 / Cockus Reaper 5.978 / Cakewalk By Bandlab / Steinberg Cubase LE 5 ... soul-mix-3

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Post 20 Jun 2018

Relax! the only time where Reason fanboy complains there must be an update is coming. That is the only time they start taking about the short coming of Reason to find out the upcoming release to cover it. I have seen also another thread like this so from my experience there will be a workflow update soon which will resolve all issue and whining which I read also somewhere here. My advice is, it is the best time to buy Reason second hand and now time to go to KVR. :D
Gulale aka Bereket

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