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Aleksey Vaneev
KVRAF
 
3465 posts since 7 Sep, 2002

Postby Aleksey Vaneev; Thu Jun 21, 2018 11:01 am Re: VST keyword observation on Google Trends

Andrew Souter wrote:Sure, it's not a bad thing to be aware of trends. But we work in a micro passion industry. A good product that you and customers are passionate about can reverse and create new company specific trends fairly easily.

And there is better, more effective market research that can be done for bigger bang for the buck. For example, if many people on KVR often give free advice by suggesting a new GUI style might help a particular company's trend-line, this might be a more important trend to listen to than to try to extrapolate data points from sparse google data about a relatively tiny passion industry. IMHO...

And to be clear when I speak of "innovation" etc, I consider your/Voxengo's work one of the leaders and pioneers in our field, particularly in aspects of dsp/mathematics. You've made a great contribution and have been ahead of the curve for quite some time in these areas by my estimation and I fully respect your accomplishments over a couple decades now! :tu:

Thanks for your support. Passion has left this field several years ago. It had a lot of passion for sure, some people even sent me CDs by mail to show their connection. Now all of this is gone, even Voxengo forums are rarely used. At the same time website traffic increased and bounce-rates decreased over the years. Go figure.

It's very hard to listen to public suggestions when there is a clear love/hate dichotomy about some aspects. Our internal pools show that as well, 50% prefer photorealistic, 50% prefer plain UIs. E.g. Reaper with its utterly generic-looking FX chain window and other generic windows gained a lot of attention over the years.
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stratum
KVRAF
 
1848 posts since 29 May, 2012

Postby stratum; Thu Jun 21, 2018 11:24 am Re: VST keyword observation on Google Trends

Reaper is an interesting product. It has aggressive pricing policy and a script language with which you can write a plugin. At first glance it leaves an impression that says "come on bro lets cut the crap, this is real deal and we know you can drive a suv with low range gears and locked differentials instead of those silly expensive status symbols". If you can communicate this message, why not. Perhaps you can continue with plain UIs.
~stratum~
Winstontaneous
KVRian
 
1331 posts since 14 Feb, 2006, from Berkeley, CA

Postby Winstontaneous; Sat Jun 23, 2018 12:39 pm Re: VST keyword observation on Google Trends

Aleksey Vaneev wrote:Thanks for your support. Passion has left this field several years ago. It had a lot of passion for sure, some people even sent me CDs by mail to show their connection. Now all of this is gone, even Voxengo forums are rarely used. At the same time website traffic increased and bounce-rates decreased over the years. Go figure.

It's very hard to listen to public suggestions when there is a clear love/hate dichotomy about some aspects. Our internal pools show that as well, 50% prefer photorealistic, 50% prefer plain UIs. E.g. Reaper with its utterly generic-looking FX chain window and other generic windows gained a lot of attention over the years.

Hi Aleksey, a few comments about this, I hope you take this as constructive criticism. I bought the Voxengo Membership last year and it's one of the best plugin bundle values anywhere!

Perhaps making plugins user skin-able could help address the UI comments? I actually really like your UIs and find them easy to use. I know it's possible to resize and change color themes, but skinnability could make this a non-issue. I'm sure there are architectural complexities related to this.

I've read most of the posts on the Voxengo forum and your replies on the Effects forum. There's a general pattern of users asking for reasonable features in competitive products (say tilt EQ filters or auto-gain EQ compensation, adding a wet/dry control to Marquis, more than 5 automate-able bands in Prime EQ, sidechains for compressors that don't have them) and your answer is generally "no".

There are also enough difference between plugins developed at certain times (like, the area at the top of the more recent plugs where you can name the instance, or not being able to use arrow keys to navigate presets) that it can be confusing to switch between them. Also the sheer number of different plugins (EQ - Prime, Curve, Gliss, HarmoniEQ - I have to visit the website before using to figure the differences and which one to use) make me wonder if it's possible to have one super Voxengo EQ with different modes rather than 4 different plugins.

And why is that I can automate the EQ on either VoxFormer or DrumFormer (not sure which) but not the other? Also the names of these plugins don't quite do them justice and may cost you sales. The former is "Awesome broadband channel strip" while the latter is "Awesome multi-band channelstrip that's like a more-adjustable PSP VintageWarmer" but it took a while to suss that out.

Also with such deep Voxengo plugins as Elephant, Shinechilla & Soniformer I feel like your documentation gets me about 70% of the way there, but I'm not sure how to use the expert features in different situations. That gap could be bridged with video tutorials or the like.

Again, nothing but the highest respect for you and your engineering skills!
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Aleksey Vaneev
KVRAF
 
3465 posts since 7 Sep, 2002

Postby Aleksey Vaneev; Sat Jun 23, 2018 2:03 pm Re: VST keyword observation on Google Trends

Winstontaneous, thanks. Well, we are again turning a specific topic thread into "Voxengo" thread, that's not quite right. I think I understand most deficiencies Voxengo plugins have in comparison to competing products, but I have to take different opinions into account. Feature requests are great, but I have to account for a lot of factors. E.g. automating 10 bands instead of 5 will unleash 15-20 more automated parameters to the host - the list will be cluttered. Some user asked for 10 import/export bands in SPAN Plus instead of 5, if I add them, the look will be cluttered, some times I also have to account for "learning" aspect of plugins: I can't set parameter ranges from -inf to -inf, I'll have to limit them or the new user may become overwhelmed.

Feature requests nowadays are offered by passionate people, and they are not always moderate towards a wider userbase. GUI skins as we have them are not effective: it's possible to change various outlines, maybe image of the knob, but the most expressive thing is coloring- which is implemented, then there are several options to make the UI even flatter-looking. GUI skinning won't change the layout or make the UIs photo-realistic: no serious gains on that road. When people say UIs are bad it relates to overall "look and feel", maybe what bothers them is the layout, maybe they want to see "important" controls in bigger size, maybe they like analog VU meters more than bars, maybe they like sliders more than knobs, too many approaches there to cover them all. The product quality poll responses I get ranges from "Appearance of the interface is ugly and tasteless. Need of style, accuracy, and work of designer. Because of this does not want to use this product.", "Not attractive" to "Basic perfect interface- no crap", "No complaints! Yr cool for considering the aesthetic aspects.", "Very convenient", "Very nice", in about 50/50 proportion. Overall visual look satisfaction score among people who voted is 88%, layout's score is 80%, with 0% begin "very bad" and "100%" being very good.

Plugin naming I use may be a bit strange, but e.g. with Voxformer, Elephant and CurveEQ names it was a clear hit. Not all names were that good, of course. The names reflect positioning and try to cause some emotion, that's of course risky in comparison to generic names like "Voxengo Equalizer", "Voxengo Limiter". Moreover, the name "Voxengo" was initially very risky, but it served well after all.

More complex plugins like Soniformer are designed for passionate and knowledgable users, and that's the weakness of such plugins - adding those 30% intro description won't make plugins simpler to use, maybe even add more confusion: more guidance less freedom to explore.
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stratum
KVRAF
 
1848 posts since 29 May, 2012

Postby stratum; Sun Jun 24, 2018 2:46 am Re: VST keyword observation on Google Trends

You are too logical for this business.
Which one looks better?

https://www.fabfilter.com/products/pro- ... er-plug-in
https://www.voxengo.com/product/glisseq/

This is what the average customer will care about before they even start to examine the rest.

This reminds me a quote by the founder of the Gibson guitar company. I don't recall his exact words, but he said something along the lines "if a guitar looks better then they will think it is better". That's why LesPauls have carved flame tops in spite of the fact that it is sonically useless.

One could also say that the fact that even Gibson is nowadays 'bankrupt' is also telling a few things. A carved flame top is perhaps forth an additional $500, but not an additional $3000. I guess figuring out that this is the case is what they can't get right.
~stratum~
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Aleksey Vaneev
KVRAF
 
3465 posts since 7 Sep, 2002

Postby Aleksey Vaneev; Sun Jun 24, 2018 5:30 am Re: VST keyword observation on Google Trends

stratum wrote:You are too logical for this business.
Which one looks better?

https://www.fabfilter.com/products/pro- ... er-plug-in
https://www.voxengo.com/product/glisseq/

This is what the average customer will care about before they even start to examine the rest.

I would compare it with PrimeEQ, and PrimeEQ feels better to me. Also GlissEQ feels like a tool, Pro-Q feels like a mobile application. But free market economy is not about what is better, it is about who sells stuff better. "Better" is a greatly segmented term. Gibson or Fender? Both are quite good. But Gibson as you've noted went bankrupt after all. Good looks is not everything like really a lot of people insist. What's good to you is not good to somebody else, especially if you factor in product cost. Pay 2x more for just a barely better experience? One should also consider that there are at least 50% pirate userbase in audio plugin business, they do not justificate their opinion by product's price.
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stratum
KVRAF
 
1848 posts since 29 May, 2012

Postby stratum; Sun Jun 24, 2018 5:44 am Re: VST keyword observation on Google Trends

Aleksey Vaneev wrote: Pay 2x more for just a barely better experience?


I don't often do that. Not that I never did. Back in 2008 when FED was printing money like crazy and dollars were cheap, I did buy a MacPro after all. I guess this experience is similar to moving to the other side of the globe. Like landing on the planet Mars instead of using a probe.
~stratum~
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Aleksey Vaneev
KVRAF
 
3465 posts since 7 Sep, 2002

Postby Aleksey Vaneev; Sun Jun 24, 2018 5:50 am Re: VST keyword observation on Google Trends

stratum wrote:
Aleksey Vaneev wrote: Pay 2x more for just a barely better experience?


I don't often do that. Not that I never did. Back in 2008 when FED was printing money like crazy and dollars were cheap, I did buy a MacPro after all. I guess this experience is similar to moving to the other side of the globe. Like landing on the planet Mars instead of using a probe.

Mac is a perfect example of something "barely better", but what sells like crazy, especially in audio production business. Marketing is an art, and not all of us are good at marketing. Marketing is about creating a value, market making, and if you created market, defined what is good, you can bank on it. But like with Gibson, you may fall from that cliff pretty quick.

I rarely hear how Waves are best-looking plugins, but Waves is still the largest audio DSP plugin maker after Native Instruments. So, again looks are not everything.
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stratum
KVRAF
 
1848 posts since 29 May, 2012

Postby stratum; Sun Jun 24, 2018 6:25 am Re: VST keyword observation on Google Trends

Aleksey Vaneev wrote:I rarely hear how Waves are best-looking plugins, but Waves is still the largest audio DSP plugin maker after Native Instruments. So, again looks are not everything.


When half of the music producer companies are your close friends, marketing can get pretty easy.
~stratum~
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Aleksey Vaneev
KVRAF
 
3465 posts since 7 Sep, 2002

Postby Aleksey Vaneev; Sun Jun 24, 2018 6:30 am Re: VST keyword observation on Google Trends

stratum wrote:
Aleksey Vaneev wrote:I rarely hear how Waves are best-looking plugins, but Waves is still the largest audio DSP plugin maker after Native Instruments. So, again looks are not everything.


When half of the music producer companies are your close friends, marketing can get pretty easy.

Sure thing. Moreover, when a big-name mastering engineer contacts you about your product and tells "it's for my assistant", you know you did not pass the barrier of the elite crowd, but not because your product is bad, but because of how communities work. Maybe they use the product, maybe not, but you can't bank on it like Waves.
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Eauson
KVRian
 
635 posts since 8 Jan, 2013, from morf

Postby Eauson; Sun Jun 24, 2018 6:46 am Re: VST keyword observation on Google Trends

Sorry l self destruct
Last edited by Eauson on Mon Jun 25, 2018 3:00 am, edited 1 time in total.
Man is least himself when he talks in the first person. Give him a mask, and he'll show you his true face
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Aleksey Vaneev
KVRAF
 
3465 posts since 7 Sep, 2002

Postby Aleksey Vaneev; Sun Jun 24, 2018 7:27 am Re: VST keyword observation on Google Trends

Eauson wrote:Oh yes and this mess message will self destruct in a few hours

No need to remove the message, almost any bit of input is useful in one way or another. Marketing indeed becomes a bit obnoxious, maybe "old school" "tempered" ways do not work well with the newer generation. "Hey bro, that's what you need if you are not a loser". :hihi:
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Eauson
KVRian
 
635 posts since 8 Jan, 2013, from morf

Postby Eauson; Sun Jun 24, 2018 7:39 am Re: VST keyword observation on Google Trends

Aleksey Vaneev wrote:
Eauson wrote:Oh yes and this mess message will self destruct in a few hours

No need to remove the message, almost any bit of input is useful in one way or another. Marketing indeed becomes a bit obnoxious, maybe "old school" "tempered" ways do not work well with the newer generation. "Hey bro, that's what you need if you are not a loser". :hihi:

Okay, will leave, I'm sure if someone stumbles across it, it may raise a titter :oops:
Yes, it appears that pointedly showing up peoples inabilities at something and then making it out that it' a solvable thing with this magic Thingamajig is a way.
Elephant eq, your wanna get herd ( mentality ) or not forgotten :D
That ones for free as you seem a nice fella :tu:
Man is least himself when he talks in the first person. Give him a mask, and he'll show you his true face
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