You don't need that new plugin. (article and video)

Share, discuss and/or ask for advice about the Black Friday crazy here!
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chimp_spanner
Posts: 1926
Joined: 06 Mar 2015

Post 22 Nov 2018

Exowildebeest wrote:
21 Nov 2018
Excellent tip on digging through your plugin list and finding something "new" for "free"!

Talking about free, there's also the nice developers giving stuff away for free on Black Friday - also a form of marketing of course, but worth checking out :)
selig wrote:
20 Nov 2018


I would argue, as someone who's been around the sun a good number of times, that marketers are no better today than they've ever been, as human nature has not changed much over the millennia.
They have got better - they're so good you don't even realize it :P
Hmm. I mean, I don't think companies have ever had a platform like the internet (and social media) before. It's so powerful, so pervasive and ubiquitous and just...it's everywhere. I open up messenger to talk to a friend, bam, NI advert. It feels like every website I visit knows exactly what I wanna see. When I watch a video on YouTube I get adverts from plugin developers, or the content I'm watching may be a sponsorship dealy so I'm being wowed by personalities I like/trust with amazing production values.

So I think it is harder these days to exercise restraint, unless of course you recognise when and how you're being targeted. Or you have adblock :lol:

But absolutely I'm putting the brakes on buying new things. The only thing I would pay for at this point is functionality updates to my DAWs. When I was doing my accounts a year or two ago I was absolutely stunned at the amount I'd spent on racks. I mean thousands. And the kicker is, I just did a huge tutorial on Reason 10, and so I had to basically dive in from scratch and explore every feature and I was finding out things I didn't know about the *stock* devices. After this many years! That's not even counting the hundreds of racks I have, that probably do things I've yet to discover.

So yeah I would say get to know what you have, inside and out. Chances are if there's something you need to accomplish, you have the tools to do it already.
Enjoy!

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joeyluck
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Post 24 Nov 2018

A tip to add to this—create and take some time to organize favorite lists.

One thing that Reason lacks at the moment, is a tag system. That's huge not only for workflow, but for reminding yourself what you have. Aside from utilities and players, looking at only two categories for the bulk of what you probably own, instruments and effects, is difficult. The browser can be quite busy and things can be forgotten very easily. Hopefully one day the browser will have a bit more organization built-in.

But for now, you can create favorite lists for anything you want. You can create a category for "de-ess" and you can create a category for "fm synths." And you can get as specific as you want with your categories. What the favorites lacks though is the ability to create sub-lists, so it can get quite messy regardless of what workaround tricks you might try, for instance by creating empty lists with category names to break things up...

There is a search option in the browser, that with a lack of tags doesn't do you much good, so you really need to take time to think about what you have, and it's best to just browse through things one at a time adding them to the most appropriate lists you've created. For example, searching 'compressor' is only going to show you results where 'compressor' is in the name of the device :/

So yeah, lots working against the Reason user for organization and keeping track of what you have. But if you can put the time into creating favorite lists, it will pay off in the meantime to remind yourself what you have. Then you can quickly look at those specific categories and compare them to the one that is on sale.

And then one day I hope to be able to use my favorites lists for actual favorites rather than using them to categorize everything :puf_smile:

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WeLoveYouToo
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Location: portland, or

Post 25 Nov 2018

the only software i bought this wknd is the 49 dollar upgrade for melodyne, that is legit useful.
also waves new de-esser is free and pretty damn good.
i have enough synths, compressors, etc that i don't need anything else until some of izotope's machine learning stuff gets better and goes on sale maybe, that's a new and interesting way to save time in a DAW it seems.

botnotbot
Posts: 127
Joined: 26 Oct 2017

Post 25 Nov 2018

joeyluck wrote:
24 Nov 2018
A tip to add to this—create and take some time to organize favorite lists.
So much and more of this!!

I've been ignoring this perennial advice forever and only recently started combing through all the factory sounds, the libraries shipping with all these amazing synths that I've managed to accumulate in only a year, and refills.

My twist, which may backfire, is adding patches to multiple favorites lists when it fits more than one category (Texture and Pad, for instance, or Keys and Orchestral for a good bell). This is based on Adam Fielding's advice of avoiding categorization in general to avoid missing out on happy accidents, but while meeting my own criteria for the way I search for sounds.

It didn't stop me from upgrading Arturia V from 4 to 6 or doing the smart thing and just buying the Synapse bundle already. And the Dark Zebra, now in it's new livery, got me with it's Zimmery siren song.

But I don't know if anything could have helped with those, to be honest :)

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Noplan
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Location: Cologne, Germany

Post 25 Nov 2018

If I get the feeling that I need something right away without ever using it, then it's wrong.

You only need something if you have created something with it. Therefore, I always try to start a song or a loop in the trial and export a wav file, which I'll listen to again sometime. If I like the result and I want to finish it, then I buy the plugin. Very easily.

And if I don`t manage anything in 30 days, I'll probably never need the plugin again.

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MikeMcKew
Posts: 169
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Location: Leesburg, VA

Post 25 Nov 2018

(fair warning, about to make a string of posts to reply to people)
chimp_spanner wrote:
22 Nov 2018
Exowildebeest wrote:
21 Nov 2018
Excellent tip on digging through your plugin list and finding something "new" for "free"!

Talking about free, there's also the nice developers giving stuff away for free on Black Friday - also a form of marketing of course, but worth checking out :)



They have got better - they're so good you don't even realize it :P
Hmm. I mean, I don't think companies have ever had a platform like the internet (and social media) before. It's so powerful, so pervasive and ubiquitous and just...it's everywhere. I open up messenger to talk to a friend, bam, NI advert. It feels like every website I visit knows exactly what I wanna see. When I watch a video on YouTube I get adverts from plugin developers, or the content I'm watching may be a sponsorship dealy so I'm being wowed by personalities I like/trust with amazing production values.

So I think it is harder these days to exercise restraint, unless of course you recognise when and how you're being targeted. Or you have adblock :lol:

But absolutely I'm putting the brakes on buying new things. The only thing I would pay for at this point is functionality updates to my DAWs. When I was doing my accounts a year or two ago I was absolutely stunned at the amount I'd spent on racks. I mean thousands. And the kicker is, I just did a huge tutorial on Reason 10, and so I had to basically dive in from scratch and explore every feature and I was finding out things I didn't know about the *stock* devices. After this many years! That's not even counting the hundreds of racks I have, that probably do things I've yet to discover.

So yeah I would say get to know what you have, inside and out. Chances are if there's something you need to accomplish, you have the tools to do it already.
Yes, they absolutely have gotten better. Ad block is definitely key (make sure to whitelist ReasonTalk :D ;) ) I agree with everything you've said. To add on to your last point, I even think that learning things inside and out will make one a better producer, and you already have everything you need to do it! It's amazing how deep we can go in stock Reason, yet I bet it didn't take long for us to start lusting after that new compressor or synth. I know I'm guilty of this. :puf_bigsmile:
Subscribe to my YouTube channel for Reason and other audio production tutorials: YouTube Channel

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MikeMcKew
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Location: Leesburg, VA

Post 25 Nov 2018

joeyluck wrote:
24 Nov 2018
A tip to add to this—create and take some time to organize favorite lists.

One thing that Reason lacks at the moment, is a tag system. That's huge not only for workflow, but for reminding yourself what you have. Aside from utilities and players, looking at only two categories for the bulk of what you probably own, instruments and effects, is difficult. The browser can be quite busy and things can be forgotten very easily. Hopefully one day the browser will have a bit more organization built-in.

But for now, you can create favorite lists for anything you want. You can create a category for "de-ess" and you can create a category for "fm synths." And you can get as specific as you want with your categories. What the favorites lacks though is the ability to create sub-lists, so it can get quite messy regardless of what workaround tricks you might try, for instance by creating empty lists with category names to break things up...

There is a search option in the browser, that with a lack of tags doesn't do you much good, so you really need to take time to think about what you have, and it's best to just browse through things one at a time adding them to the most appropriate lists you've created. For example, searching 'compressor' is only going to show you results where 'compressor' is in the name of the device :/

So yeah, lots working against the Reason user for organization and keeping track of what you have. But if you can put the time into creating favorite lists, it will pay off in the meantime to remind yourself what you have. Then you can quickly look at those specific categories and compare them to the one that is on sale.

And then one day I hope to be able to use my favorites lists for actual favorites rather than using them to categorize everything :puf_smile:
That's a great idea! I'm sure a lot of time can be saved that way, and it also means that you've at least looked at everything you have ONCE. I know there is stuff I've bought that I've never even put in the rack - horrible, right? Tags in the browser (and sublists) would make this infinitely easier, as you say. I think it could also encourage experimentation, since you're more likely to slap something new in the rack when you see it in front of you, as opposed to going to a handful of plugins by default.
Subscribe to my YouTube channel for Reason and other audio production tutorials: YouTube Channel

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MikeMcKew
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Post 25 Nov 2018

WeLoveYouToo wrote:
25 Nov 2018
the only software i bought this wknd is the 49 dollar upgrade for melodyne, that is legit useful.
also waves new de-esser is free and pretty damn good.
i have enough synths, compressors, etc that i don't need anything else until some of izotope's machine learning stuff gets better and goes on sale maybe, that's a new and interesting way to save time in a DAW it seems.
Melodyne is one that I would buy again. :puf_wink: The quality of free plugins has gotten very good, I must say. No shame in using them if they do what you want them to do. The machine learning stuff is super interesting - I think something truly new and innovative like that will definitely be worth taking a look at. When you think about it, while quality and features in DAWs/plugins has improved over the years, we're really just doing the same things we've always done! :puf_bigsmile:
Subscribe to my YouTube channel for Reason and other audio production tutorials: YouTube Channel

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MikeMcKew
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Location: Leesburg, VA

Post 25 Nov 2018

botnotbot wrote:
25 Nov 2018
joeyluck wrote:
24 Nov 2018
A tip to add to this—create and take some time to organize favorite lists.
So much and more of this!!

I've been ignoring this perennial advice forever and only recently started combing through all the factory sounds, the libraries shipping with all these amazing synths that I've managed to accumulate in only a year, and refills.

My twist, which may backfire, is adding patches to multiple favorites lists when it fits more than one category (Texture and Pad, for instance, or Keys and Orchestral for a good bell). This is based on Adam Fielding's advice of avoiding categorization in general to avoid missing out on happy accidents, but while meeting my own criteria for the way I search for sounds.

It didn't stop me from upgrading Arturia V from 4 to 6 or doing the smart thing and just buying the Synapse bundle already. And the Dark Zebra, now in it's new livery, got me with it's Zimmery siren song.

But I don't know if anything could have helped with those, to be honest :)
Sometimes it can't be helped. :puf_bigsmile: And again, it's really okay to buy stuff when it's done with intention.

As for your patch organization, that sounds quite useful, good tip! I'm terrified at the thought of organizing patches though... maybe one day. Tagging would make it so much easier! Actually, the way you describe it sort of reminds me of Omnisphere's patch browser. The way they organized it makes so much sense, and it allows you instantly drill down to a handful of patches that match a specific type and mood that you're looking for.
Subscribe to my YouTube channel for Reason and other audio production tutorials: YouTube Channel

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MikeMcKew
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Post 25 Nov 2018

Noplan wrote:
25 Nov 2018
If I get the feeling that I need something right away without ever using it, then it's wrong.

You only need something if you have created something with it. Therefore, I always try to start a song or a loop in the trial and export a wav file, which I'll listen to again sometime. If I like the result and I want to finish it, then I buy the plugin. Very easily.

And if I don`t manage anything in 30 days, I'll probably never need the plugin again.
Very good points. :mrgreen: It's quite easy to forget why we buy all this stuff in the first place - to make music! In fact, might be about time to fire up the old DAW now... :puf_wink:
Subscribe to my YouTube channel for Reason and other audio production tutorials: YouTube Channel

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Reasonable man
Posts: 245
Joined: 14 Jul 2016

Post 25 Nov 2018

I've put alot of thought into what i need. I got Expanse last year which im only getting around to looking at now ( i'm at least a year/2 years behind most users on this forum!) and it it a truly incredible sounding synth.
But since analouge, fm and additive syntheseis is my thing ... picking up the synth zero is my next goal ...the demo looks incredible and although its on sale right now i dont have the bunts to pick it up which is annoying.

More importantly i have narrowed down all future software purchases to one thing ....Komplete ultimate 12. The probalem is it costs over a grand (Euros) and to get it working properly i' going to have to update my macbook pro with a newer version which is about 2k (maybe more depending on the model) so thats qiute possible 4k all in (including a decent mic).

So in light of that i dont need anymore standalone vst's or Re's as it is wasting money ...literally. Logic Pro for cinematic stuff . Reason for creative ambient stuff. Thats all very well and all that but i dont have the 4k i need to sart doing some serious sonic damage! :D

kitekrazy
Posts: 667
Joined: 19 Jan 2015

Post 25 Nov 2018

Reasonable man wrote:
25 Nov 2018
I've put alot of thought into what i need. I got Expanse last year which im only getting around to looking at now ( i'm at least a year/2 years behind most users on this forum!) and it it a truly incredible sounding synth.
But since analouge, fm and additive syntheseis is my thing ... picking up the synth zero is my next goal ...the demo looks incredible and although its on sale right now i dont have the bunts to pick it up which is annoying.

More importantly i have narrowed down all future software purchases to one thing ....Komplete ultimate 12. The probalem is it costs over a grand (Euros) and to get it working properly i' going to have to update my macbook pro with a newer version which is about 2k (maybe more depending on the model) so thats qiute possible 4k all in (including a decent mic).

So in light of that i dont need anymore standalone vst's or Re's as it is wasting money ...literally. Logic Pro for cinematic stuff . Reason for creative ambient stuff. Thats all very well and all that but i dont have the 4k i need to sart doing some serious sonic damage! :D
Komplete is something I'm thinking of leaving behind. One might use 10% of it at the most. Most who never had it have no idea how big it is. I've only bought it because it is a better value than upgrading certain products. I rarely touch the sound libraries. I would advise starting with Konplete instead of the Ultimate.

kitekrazy
Posts: 667
Joined: 19 Jan 2015

Post 25 Nov 2018

If it's like anything last year the better deals will be coming in the next 4 weeks.

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WeLoveYouToo
Posts: 71
Joined: 01 Jul 2017
Location: portland, or

Post 25 Nov 2018

MikeMcKew wrote:
25 Nov 2018
The quality of free plugins has gotten very good, I must say. No shame in using them if they do what you want them to do.:
to be clear, it’s free for black friday only, and is the best de-esser i have ever used, so i want to add it to the black friday forum. the price will go back to regular after the wknd.

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minilog
Posts: 69
Joined: 07 Aug 2018

Post 28 Nov 2018

Plugin Alliance released a new elysia Phil's Cascade coloring box this month. Intro price was $149 but I got a $50 discount because I owned one of four qualifying plugins (Black Box HG-2) which gave me a special price of $99. Then I used my monthly $25 voucher to bring the price down to $74. I simply couldn't pass up half off the intro price - $74 for what will be a $249 plugin!

See ya in the rabbit hole.

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NekujaK
Posts: 384
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Location: USA

Post 01 Dec 2018

A cautionary tale about the madness of plugins...

I love gear, and my favorite gear is plugins. When Reason started supporting VSTs, I went on a dizzying plugin bender, binging my way thru the best of what VSTs have to offer - paid and free. BUT... there came a point earlier this year when I realized my plugin gluttony was creating a serious workflow problem. Let's say I wanted to add a delay effect to a mix. When I owned only 3 or 4 delay plugs, I knew them all fairly well and could quickly decide which would be best for the task at hand. But with nearly 20 delay units to pick from, analysis paralysis sets in, and since I'm not so familiar with all of them, I need to take time to audition many of them, and between all the auditioning and weighing pros and cons, my creative momentum starts to die.

It's bad enough on my own projects, but when I'm mixing for clients, and they're sitting in the room with me, I can't waste their time pondering plugin choices. So naturally, I reach for plugins that are most familiar to me, and those same ones tend to get picked over and over in each session. So even though I own dozens (actually hundreds) of plugins, I only really ever use a very small fraction of them, and mostly older plugins that I am deeply familiar with. So my net usage is pretty much the same as if I had only stuck with a small initial handful of plugins. :( Something to think about.

In hindsight it seems fairly obvious, but at the time, it never occurred to me that having lots of plugins could negatively impact workflow.

Of course on the flipside, it's great to have lots of choices and I don't regret having all these plugins (and supporting the plugin makers), but to be able to take full advantage of them requires a significant time investment to truly learn what each has to offer and to be able to use them effectively in the heat of a mixing session. Unfortunately, I generally don't have that kind of time these days, so I stick with my trusty favorites, and occasionally find opportunities to thoroughly explore a few new alternatives.

A while back, I checked out a webinar given by a prominent Hollywood film mix engineer, and at one point he opened his ProTools plugin menu. It contained a gargantuan list of plugins that makes my collection seem miniscule by comparison. He somewhat sheepishly admitted that he automatically buys every new plugin that's released. Deep down, I'd like to be able to do the same, but I also know I'd never get around to using the vast majority of them.

With plugins, as with most things in life... moderation is key.
wreaking havoc with :reason: since 2.5

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minilog
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Post 01 Dec 2018

NekujaK wrote:
01 Dec 2018
With plugins, as with most things in life... moderation is key.
Moderation can mean different things.

You don't need plugins to produce music as the OP emphasizes but you're better off with them in mixing and "mastering".

My main focus at the moment is saturation and coloration hence the previous post. Everything else is gone to the wind for me at this point. I guess my point is to ask ourselves what do we really feel is necessary to advance. I make dark/melancholy/weird techno music with an industrial edge so I sure as shit need to be exploring the best coloration available to me. It's definitely way more personal than consumerism vs restraint.

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NekujaK
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Post 01 Dec 2018

minilog wrote:
01 Dec 2018
NekujaK wrote:
01 Dec 2018
With plugins, as with most things in life... moderation is key.
Moderation can mean different things.

You don't need plugins to produce music as the OP emphasizes but you're better off with them in mixing and "mastering".

My main focus at the moment is saturation and coloration hence the previous post. Everything else is gone to the wind for me at this point. I guess my point is to ask ourselves what do we really feel is necessary to advance. I make dark/melancholy/weird techno music with an industrial edge so I sure as shit need to be exploring the best coloration available to me. It's definitely way more personal than consumerism vs restraint.
I hear ya. Interestingly enough, of all the plugins in my collection, coloration EQs and saturators/enhancers are the most heavily populated categories. I pretty much have learned my way around most of the different EQs, so I usually know what EQ to reach for in a given situation, but saturators are a whole other ball of wax, and for me at least, having too many choices was really becoming a workflow problem. The reason is, saturation units all work differently and many are capable of producing a wide range of results, so it can take quite a bit of time (for me at least) to acquire a working familiarity with each unit. That's part of the fun, of course, but when I have deadlines and client projects in work, I usually don't have the opportunity.

I own all of the PA saturators, but at the moment, the only one I have confidence using is VSM-3, and it took some time to figure out how to coax desirable sounds out of it. It's a beast of a unit to tame, but I decided it was well worth the effort after being blown away by a couple of the presets. I have a handful of other saturation units I really like, but there many more I have yet to truly explore.

Plugins are simply tools to help get a job done, and many are like power tools that you need to be familiar with before you can use them effectively. My original point was simply that owning lots of them doesn't automatically mean you can instantly make full use of all of them. Many have a learning curve, and the more of them you have, the more up front learning time is required.

Jam on!
wreaking havoc with :reason: since 2.5

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minilog
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Post 02 Dec 2018

NekujaK wrote:
01 Dec 2018
I own all of the PA saturators, but at the moment, the only one I have confidence using is VSM-3, and it took some time to figure out how to coax desirable sounds out of it. It's a beast of a unit to tame, but I decided it was well worth the effort after being blown away by a couple of the presets. I have a handful of other saturation units I really like, but there many more I have yet to truly explore.
Thanks for the insight. That plugin is one of a few on my wishlist for this month and then I'll be ready to hide out in the bat cave when the new year hits.

future-bit
Posts: 51
Joined: 07 May 2017

Post 02 Dec 2018

NekujaK wrote:
01 Dec 2018
So even though I own dozens (actually hundreds) of plugins, I only really ever use a very small fraction of them, and mostly older plugins that I am deeply familiar with. So my net usage is pretty much the same as if I had only stuck with a small initial handful of plugins. :( Something to think about.
I have the same. I bought a little lately. Updated old Melodyne Cre8 to Melodyne 4 Studio, Xils 3 to Xils 4, Waldorf Edition 2 LE to the full version. And I do not want to buy. I definitely won't spend on Reason. I have enough RE and version 9 does everything that is needed for me.

I would say I have everything (but maybe I would also like to see Duna 3). A large number of plugins slows down my workflow, it takes a lot of time to learn.

I think all I would like: one modular synthesizer, one multi-effect and one drum machine as a result. This should not be protected. This should work from a flash drive. This should not load my old Q6600 processor.

mashers
Posts: 92
Joined: 05 Nov 2018

Post 02 Dec 2018

I agree with the original video, but not only for the financial reasons. Having too many plugins would make me lazy. It would be too easy to click through patches on a new plugin to find a sound I haven't used before and think "that'll do". The novelty would give the impression that those new sounds were exactly what I needed for a new song. But having a more limited set of tools means you have to be more inventive and creative. That's why I love using Reason stock devices. Creating a nice little synth part in Thor and then doing some crazy wiring to make it sound totally different is amazing, more fun than scrolling through a list of plugins, and creates a more distinctive sound in my experience.
:reason: Singer/songwriter exclusively using Reason 10 to write electro/orchestral songs
:lightbulb: Latest songs: Terrorbytes | Chrononauts | Peacock
:post: More songs on my YouTube channel

TritoneAddiction
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Location: Sweden

Post 02 Dec 2018

I keep going back and forth on this one.

Sure maybe you don't "need" that new plugin, but if it makes music making more fun then it might be worth spending some money. After all isn't it all about having fun? Going back to Reasons stock devices now would bore me pretty hard after trying out all my current rack extensions. Just think about all the good stuff I would have missed if I just thought "I don't really need that".

I look at it this way. You have to go through the process of trying and buying many many plugins in order to find out what you actually "need" and what you like to work with. It's just part of it. You're gonna waste some money. It's ok.

Having said that. It's also easy to fall into the trap of buying new things even though you haven't even tried your other purchases enough yet. This is kind of dumb and I've been in that situation from time to time.

MrFigg
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Joined: 20 Apr 2018

Post 02 Dec 2018

TritoneAddiction wrote:
02 Dec 2018
I keep going back and forth on this one.

Sure maybe you don't "need" that new plugin, but if it makes music making more fun then it might be worth spending some money. After all isn't it all about having fun?
That’s absolutely true. It is always really fun with a new RE.

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minilog
Posts: 69
Joined: 07 Aug 2018

Post 02 Dec 2018

TritoneAddiction wrote:
02 Dec 2018
Sure maybe you don't "need" that new plugin, but if it makes music making more fun then it might be worth spending some money. After all isn't it all about having fun? Going back to Reasons stock devices now would bore me pretty hard after trying out all my current rack extensions. Just think about all the good stuff I would have missed if I just thought "I don't really need that".

I look at it this way. You have to go through the process of trying and buying many many plugins in order to find out what you actually "need" and what you like to work with. It's just part of it. You're gonna waste some money. It's ok.
Having a fun is another way to look at it after the fact of refining a craft. Somebody might as well make a thread in a video game forum saying you don't need that new video game. That frame of mind makes this restraint seem a bit silly. Music production is my only hobby and it is the only thing I pour my money into for enjoyment besides beer and tobacco. I don't have a television, don't watch movies, don't play video games, no paintball hobby, etc. etc. My accumulation of devices has been largely based on my increasing comprehension and ability. A year ago, I wouldn't think of buying an experimental coloring box plugin, and this is just the nature of a rabbit hole. The accumulation only gets ridiculous IMO with redundancy like having ten reverb plugins when you only use three of them or having several emulations of a particular sound.

kitekrazy
Posts: 667
Joined: 19 Jan 2015

Post 02 Dec 2018

Well this didn't go well for me. When I buy Waves on sale it's usually a duplicate license. I got the earlier Waves Gold deals, one was Waves+RenMaxx which that upgrade put everything at v10. Then using the Soundgrid voucher I upgraded my other Waves Gold to add RenMaxx for $15. More plugins and I probably could tell you some of them do unless they are labeled EQ or compressor.

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