Akai Midimix Overlays with Remote Mapping

Want to talk about music hardware or software that doesn't include Reason?
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SyncOpatedShuffler
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Post 29 Jan 2024

Hi all,

I have opened a shop to sell the overlays I recently started making. The overlays are designed to fit on the Akai Midimix and each one is customised for a particular Reason device. This started as a fun little project to make a hardware version of a Subtractor using what I already had available. I choose the Midimix because a. its cheap but well built, b. it has plenty of knobs/buttons and faders, and c. (most importantly) I already owned one. After the first prototype was done (with tape and a biro) I realised they could be useful for almost any device. I know there are other controllers that are arguably better such as Novation Launch Control or Nektars but I actually think the Midimix does a good job and its limitations can be managed without too much problem. The main benefit of using this setup (other than cost) is that the overlays provide instant visual cues to each controls function and for many devices there are enough that every parameter can have its own control. The overlays can be quickly A secondary benefit is that it actually feels like playing a hardware device (I sometimes even turn off the screen). Anyway, feel free to check out the shop at the link: https://reasonoverlays.etsy.com

Any feedback from the user community would be very welcome.

Cheers
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Bes
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Post 29 Jan 2024

i have a midimix and i think this is a perfectly fine idea but i am honestly am rolling on the floor laughing at these prices
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SyncOpatedShuffler
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Post 29 Jan 2024

Too cheap? ;)

Seriously, I thought £20 was a fair ask. Maybe I'm wrong.

What would you say is a realistic price :?:

Bes
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Post 29 Jan 2024

maybe 10 for the lot on a generous day? the designs don't line up with the knobs correctly and all the extra colour and lines information makes the layouts seem cluttered. on the other hand a roll of masking tape and a sharpie can be stolen from anywhere for free
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SyncOpatedShuffler
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Post 29 Jan 2024

OK thanks. If I went with 10 for the lot then it wouldn't really be worth the effort. I do think having a deal price for multi-buys is a sensible idea, I just don't know how to do that on Etsy yet. About the alignment - yes on the images there are some slight misalignments - this was down to the cutting not the designs and I have sorted it now. The designs work for me and I don't find them cluttered. The point of the project was to make something that looks and feels like a hardware version of the device without costing $$$. I used to use pen and tape but found it a pain changing it every time I changed an instrument, plus I couldn't read my own writing. If the pen and tape approach works for you then great. PS if you are the type of person who goes round stealing masking tape and sharpies, im not surprised that these are too expensive you cheapskate!

Bes
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Post 29 Jan 2024

lol fair
i'm sorry i wasn't more welcoming to the forum though
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deeplink
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Post 30 Jan 2024

Saw these on Facebook and thought they looked pretty good.

Just one suggestion - it's not quite clear from a buyer perspective on the website if this a product that you print and cut yourself or if you send the pre-printed and cut overlay as a package. (there are few guys doing overlays for other hardware products and they typically print, cut and then ship the product).
The pricing suggests that you actually physically ship this product.
There's also no guide on which paper is best to be used and best practice for cutting it.
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SyncOpatedShuffler
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Post 30 Jan 2024

Thanks! That's great feedback. I freely admit I have zero
experience when it comes to online selling and I found Etsy not that easy to use. In fact as I've said (and I want to make clear) I didn't start this with the intention of making money. I've been using Reason for a long time purely as a hobby and this project is just an extension of that. When I put those pictures on Facebook it seemed like people might actually be interested so I've been trying to make the products and shop look at least semi professional haha. I can't really give them away for peanuts as there are material costs involved as well as my time but I'll have another look at pricing. My aim is to offer both physical products that are printed, cut and shipped, and cheaper PDF versions that the buyer can download, print and cut themselves. Most of the products on the website are for the physical versions but I added 3 PDFs recently to test it out. As I'm doing this in my spare time, it might take a while to get everything sorted. I would be interested to see what others are offering if you wouldn't mind sharing? Another reason I started the project was that I couldn't find anything available that did the same thing. I found a couple of similar things. One from Novalays on eBay, and another from AmpFreQQ but these aren't Reason specific and the Novalays seem to be just for looks. I have a few of these printed out now and I really enjoy using them. It's like having a whole rack of hardware that fits in a draw :)

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SyncOpatedShuffler
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Post 30 Jan 2024

Bes wrote:
29 Jan 2024
lol fair
i'm sorry i wasn't more welcoming to the forum though
Haha, no worries. I welcome all feedback, even from petty criminals ;)

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selig
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Post 30 Jan 2024

deeplink wrote:
30 Jan 2024
Saw these on Facebook and thought they looked pretty good.

Just one suggestion - it's not quite clear from a buyer perspective on the website if this a product that you print and cut yourself or if you send the pre-printed and cut overlay as a package. (there are few guys doing overlays for other hardware products and they typically print, cut and then ship the product).
The pricing suggests that you actually physically ship this product.
There's also no guide on which paper is best to be used and best practice for cutting it.
I wasn’t going to post because I felt the subject was being covered well. BUT that was because I assumed you were shipping physical product. Even then, it felt like the pricing was high since if you got five or six of these you’d possibly spend more than you spent for the hardware controller (and I would think most folks would want more than one overlay). At those prices I’d think another controller would be a far better investment in many cases!

But this was when I thought you were selling overlays, not digital files for DIY solution where much of the process is left up to the end user to figure out.

For example, you can get a physical keyboard overlay for Logic for $17 - and you only need one of these.


I don’t have a specific answer to your call for feedback, except to say calling them “overlays” implies a physical product, and pricing digital downloads this high doesn’t seem in line with the low cost of the initial product, which folks likely gravitate to for the low cost. Compare it to the cost of making an album and selling it for around the same price.

I’m certainly no marketing expert so I’d just wait and see what the overall response is, but for that cost I’d personally expect either a fully functioning product or a lot more supporting data for tips and suggestions for the DIY process. That said, I think it IS a really cool idea!
Selig Audio, LLC

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dioxide
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Post 30 Jan 2024

I don't think the price is low considering the time that will have gone into these. If these were physical products I don't think that would add much to the cost as the cost is mainly time spent making the graphics. Anyone who thinks this is expensive could have a go at creating their own version and afterwards they can see how they feel about paying someone $15 to save themselves the effort next time. I mean I can be a skinflint but come on, everyone expects stuff for next to nothing these days.

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crimsonwarlock
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Post 30 Jan 2024

selig wrote:
30 Jan 2024
But this was when I thought you were selling overlays, not digital files for DIY solution where much of the process is left up to the end user to figure out.
He IS selling physical overlays :puf_wink:
SyncOpatedShuffler wrote:
30 Jan 2024
I can't really give them away for peanuts as there are material costs involved as well as my time but I'll have another look at pricing. My aim is to offer both physical products that are printed, cut and shipped, and cheaper PDF versions that the buyer can download, print and cut themselves. Most of the products on the website are for the physical versions but I added 3 PDFs recently to test it out.
-------
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selig
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Post 30 Jan 2024

crimsonwarlock wrote:
30 Jan 2024
selig wrote:
30 Jan 2024
But this was when I thought you were selling overlays, not digital files for DIY solution where much of the process is left up to the end user to figure out.
He IS selling physical overlays :puf_wink:
SyncOpatedShuffler wrote:
30 Jan 2024
I can't really give them away for peanuts as there are material costs involved as well as my time but I'll have another look at pricing. My aim is to offer both physical products that are printed, cut and shipped, and cheaper PDF versions that the buyer can download, print and cut themselves. Most of the products on the website are for the physical versions but I added 3 PDFs recently to test it out.
Was I mis reading deeplink's post (the one I was responding to)?
Selig Audio, LLC

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SyncOpatedShuffler
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Post 30 Jan 2024

Hi all, I really appreciate your comments. This is exactly the sort of feedback I was hoping for. I now realise i've probably confused the issue over both pricing and the type of product. Ah well, I just enjoy designing them, making the mapping fit and of course playing with them. I have no clue when it comes to business! To be honest I don't know if its even a viable business model...the lack of sales to date suggests probably not haha. Maybe a better way would be to sell them in packs of 5 or 10 and you get to choose the devices? How about this: for the physical overlays 1 for £10, 3 for £20, 5 for £25 or 10 for £40? And for PDFs, a flat rate of say £2.50? Would be nice to sell a few if nothing else than to see what others make of using them. I'm almost finished working on Complex1 (pic attached) and I must say this is the part that I enjoy, not so much the business side of it :? . Regarding instructions for cutting the templates, its a great idea but I went through a few different methods until I settled on buying a cutting machine.. my daughter hasn't had much use of her Christmas present yet :-) Its definately doable using a craftknife but the results are never going to be as good so unless you have the right set up its better to go for the physical product. Likewise for materials. I bought a pack of heavy duty card which has a texture that feels nice quality. Ive got a fairly decent laser printer too but Im dreading having to replace the toners. They cost almost as much as a vintage Minimoog.
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