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View Full Version : So some of you like the idea of subscription.Then think again!!!.



cove
12-20-2016, 02:47 PM
This subject is a bit off topic but does have a relationship to comments made about the subscription method of paying for software.

My personal experience may be a warning to others as to what could happen if for what ever reason you cannot pay for your next subscription.

For many years ive been using an image viewer and editing software called Zoner Studio Pro.
Was up to version 18 but then was notified of a newer version called Zoner Studio Pro X and it was made clear that this version is subscription only.
The new features in this new version looked good to me so i decided to upgrade from my v18 to vX not realising the full implication of what id bought into.
It turns out that if for any reason you do not continue with your next subscription at the end of 12 months then Zona will diliberatly
deactivate/disable virtually all the functions of your software.
The only thing you will have access to is your photos and be able to export them you will not be able to edit any images in any way shape or form.
Weather like me who paid an upgrade price of about Ģ29 or someone who has paid the innitial full price of $95 were all affected. if you don,t pay
Zona take it away.
You would think that you would at least have the full ongoing use of the software beyond the subscription date cause you paid $95 for it.

You would also of thought that the worst that could happen is you loose access to future updates/freebies and possible tech support and that,s all.

Just feels totally wrong that Zona can cut you off like this.
Anyone know of other software company that operates there subscription like this?.

3D Kiwi
12-20-2016, 02:56 PM
As far as I know adobe and autodesk stop you from using the software in any way if you dont keep the subscription up to date. Sounds like Zona are being pretty fair to alow you to export images.

Subscription whether you like it or hate it is the way its going.

Markc
12-20-2016, 04:38 PM
Will your version 18 not function as stand alone.

Personally I hate subscription, I don't rent software/streaming tv/cars/houses, I like to own stuff.....soapbox over.

MonroePoteet
12-20-2016, 05:02 PM
If LW ever goes subscription, the last non-subscription version will be the last one that I buy unless I win the lottery or start doing this as a money-making venture (i.e. professionally). As a hobbyist, who has LOTS of other time-consuming interests as well, I'm not going to pay a subscription for a tool which I may not use for a LONG time (maybe even years) between projects. Last time, I got off on CNC milling, and spent a lot of time in the associated CAD packages, and didn't use LW at all except to try DXF conversions compatible with the CAD package.

The *right way*, IMO, is to offer Support Contracts, a part of which is "free" upgrades. Then, for people who use a product all the time and rely on it, they buy a top-end Support Contract. For us "bottom feeders", we get what we get unless we pay the upgrade price.

Just my 2 cents worth.

mTp

jwiede
12-20-2016, 07:43 PM
You would think that you would at least have the full ongoing use of the software beyond the subscription date cause you paid $95 for it.

You would also of thought that the worst that could happen is you loose access to future updates/freebies and possible tech support and that,s all.


What you've described above is not a "software subscription license" (like Adobe CC), it is a "software _maintenance_ subscription license" (like MAXON MSA). The two are very different entities (and in the case of the latter, the actual license for the product in question is generally a "permanent" license).

It sounds like Zoner Studio Pro X was offered under a "software subscription license", and for those, generally there is NO provision for use of the software after the term of payment has ended.

Didn't they describe anywhere on the site what happens when you stop paying? Nigh-all "software subscription licenses" are quite upfront about those provisions.

samurai_x
12-20-2016, 07:55 PM
Lightwave on "rental only" would be the final nail in the coffin.

Companies can't go rental unless you are
- industry standard (adobe, ad)
- huge userbase (adobe, ad)
- unique (ipisoft)
- extremely cheap (netflix)

erikals
12-20-2016, 08:14 PM
AutoDesk / Adobe stopped being superior to other software quite some time ago.

unless they change their policy, or make fantastic tools that are miles ahead of others, subscribers will move to other software.

AutoDesk / Adobe technology used to be revolutionary.
...used to be.

they still have great features, but things have changed.

jwiede
12-20-2016, 08:17 PM
Companies can't go rental unless you are
- industry standard (adobe, ad)
- huge userbase (adobe, ad)
- unique (ipisoft)
- extremely cheap (netflix)

In particular, subscriptions only generally "work well" in cases with an already large market share whose growth rate is fairly static (or flat). Subscriptions are generally viewed as a way to enhance ongoing revenue in a low-to-flat growth situation. The main "value" of subscriptions from the seller perspective is that they provide a more reliable, ongoing revenue stream versus periodic upgrade revenue, but that depends on an already-extant market base, themselves dependent on the product.

For a company whose product does not have that sizable, relatively static market share in the first place, subscriptions are actually much riskier than permanent licenses. Potential customers don't already have a dependency on the product, and thus can "try and leave" for much less revenue than they could involving permanent licenses. That aspect actually makes the company's revenue stream _more_ chaotic, not less (due to the absence of that sizable locked-in market base's predictable ongoing revenue to offset short-term variations), and thus less desirable.

jwiede
12-20-2016, 08:35 PM
There's another reason why companies do better selling permanent licenses versus subscriptions during "high growth" phases, stemming from "over-buy customers" (customers who buy but do not become regular users of the product, f.e. occasional users). Selling such customers permanent licenses garners more revenue up-front, and may even garner some amount of upgrade revenue. However, those same customers in a subscribe-to-use situation are much more likely to wait until the actual need arises, and then only subscribe while that need exists (they may initially subscribe, but disuse drives them to drop the subscription quickly).

Compared to the revenue such customers provide from permanent licenses, the revenue they provide as subscribers winds up being significantly lower, and much more variable over time (read as, counter-productive).

samurai_x
12-20-2016, 09:14 PM
AutoDesk / Adobe stopped being superior to other software quite some time ago.

unless they change their policy, or make fantastic tools that are miles ahead of others, subscribers will move to other software.

AutoDesk / Adobe technology used to be revolutionary.
...used to be.

they still have great features, but things have changed.


Forget superiority. Softimage was superior to 3dmax. Its dead.
And nothing has changed. Many people are still using photoshop and aftereffects despite copycats being available for quite some time. Nobody can touch maya userbase, too, in the professional segment.

jeric_synergy
12-20-2016, 09:42 PM
Pour moi, the Adobe CC subscription is a significant bargain: I get to remain current for a nominal price on several high-ticket programs at a far lower cost than upgrades (if they existed) would have cost.

When a potential client was appalled and amused at the version of AE I was using, and I lost that job, I knew it was time to drink the koolaid. It's been good. With a modicum of effort I'd get even more value out of it (the numerous webservices it includes), but I'm very satisfied.

LW doesn't exhibit ANY of the characteristics described above as prerequisites for moving to a subscriber model. I'm not sure why this crazed emotional panic is happening: there's literally NOBODY suggesting it. Someone should let the bees out of their bonnet.

Exclaim
12-20-2016, 10:23 PM
If LW ever goes subscription, the last non-subscription version will be the last one that I buy unless I win the lottery or start doing this as a money-making venture (i.e. professionally). As a hobbyist, who has LOTS of other time-consuming interests as well, I'm not going to pay a subscription for a tool which I may not use for a LONG time (maybe even years) between projects. Last time, I got off on CNC milling, and spent a lot of time in the associated CAD packages, and didn't use LW at all except to try DXF conversions compatible with the CAD package.

The *right way*, IMO, is to offer Support Contracts, a part of which is "free" upgrades. Then, for people who use a product all the time and rely on it, they buy a top-end Support Contract. For us "bottom feeders", we get what we get unless we pay the upgrade price.

Just my 2 cents worth.

mTp
Subscriptions only make sense for studios who use the software as a supplement to in house tools. Other than that, professionals would rather own the software. Autodesk wants to use the cloud, but who doesn't? Cloud rendering doesn't/shouldn't require a subscription.

jwiede
12-20-2016, 11:25 PM
LW doesn't exhibit ANY of the characteristics described above as prerequisites for moving to a subscriber model. I'm not sure why this crazed emotional panic is happening: there's literally NOBODY suggesting it. Someone should let the bees out of their bonnet.

Exactly, I'm not sure why people keep raising it as a concern.

djwaterman
12-21-2016, 12:04 AM
Rob Powers wrote in no uncertain terms that LW would never go the subscription route when he first announced the new version and the upgrade policy. People call for more communication, yet ignore said communication and write their own narrative.

Surrealist.
12-21-2016, 12:33 AM
That is true but it is also true they are working real hard at not saying anything about anything. So I don't think you can use something he said in the past as a hard rule. It would be inconsistent.

And he said that quite a while ago. A lot has happened since then.

I think you should allow for the fact that people in business have to stay on their toes to survive. Things change. Markets swing. Economic factors in the world today inform current considerations or modify decisions that were made in the past.

They may never go subscription. If they feel strongly about being able to compete without it. So be it. It is their business. I don't think they can or will. My opinion.

One thing is for sure though. I don't see them ever doing it as an only option. So you people worrying about that can get your panties out of a wad and get back to work. :D

spherical
12-21-2016, 12:43 AM
I'm not sure why this crazed emotional panic is happening: there's literally NOBODY suggesting it.

Might want to look again... I've seen plenty that may lead LW3DG to move in that direction. Enough feedback in the wrong direction, however misguided, just might tip the scales. "Hey, if there's this many that are OK with it...." People often don't realize the weight of their blatherings.

jeric_synergy
12-21-2016, 12:57 AM
Spherical, I'm w/the above who outlined the situation which would make it viable, and which LW in no way approaches. That's in addition to RP's comments. In short, it's gonna be a long time. We'll be fighting in the wasteland before that happens (so, like 18 months). JOKING!!! --nobody's going to be rendering stuff when fighting over the last Big Mac.

STILL JOKING. It's nuclear destruction for us all.

S0nny
12-21-2016, 01:46 AM
Guys, subscription is one thing, subscribtion-only is another, many software houses are doing subscriptions today: the smartest ones are those who offers different and affordable options. As said in another thread, Lw is not in the position to do sub-only, neither they gave any indication in this regards.

Anyway, did anybody had a look at Allegorithmic rent-to-own? Each payment will be deduct from the full licences price, so the more you use the software, the better, not the opposite as with Adobe or AD. Also, you can pause the rent as you like, or increase your payment to shorten the path to the full license. It's like pay in very small installments, more than a rental.

They solved two of the big problems of this subscription only: not owning a perpetual license, and the non-convenience in the long term use.

MichaelT
12-21-2016, 02:37 AM
I've never heard LWG saying anything about changing their licensing method. That said, I would not object to them using subscription. It is the 'only' part at least *I* would object to :) Beyond that, they should get all the money they can.


Might want to look again... I've seen plenty that may lead LW3DG to move in that direction. Enough feedback in the wrong direction, however misguided, just might tip the scales. "Hey, if there's this many that are OK with it...." People often don't realize the weight of their blatherings.

I think what people who voice against subs (like me) are afraid of, is not being able to buy a permanent license. Ignoring the topic is also a signal though.

hrgiger
12-21-2016, 02:50 AM
Even if LW3DG made a subscription option it would be just that, an option. I don't see them ever going subscription only. Besides, with their current release schedule which is on no kind of schedule at all, a subscription based plan would make 0 sense and would not be of value to most people unless it was extraordinarily cheap which wouldn't benefit LW3DG at all either.

For a time Adobe subscription made sense for me, Ive used it for the last 4 years but I can happily say that my Adobe CC subscription ends on December 31st and I'm cutting the cord. Now that there's a viable alternative to Photoshop and Illustrator, there's no reason for me to rent software anymore. Personally I've felt forced into it because I have depended on a few of the Adobe apps but there is no subscription for just a few of the apps, you either have to take a single app or all of them. Its crap honestly.

Forget industry standard BS. People use what software works for them. Unless you work somewhere that makes you use a certain software (in which case you're likely not paying for it anyway), there are alternatives to rental software.

TheLexx
12-21-2016, 06:50 AM
Forget superiority. Softimage was superior to 3dmax. Its dead.
And nothing has changed. Many people are still using photoshop and aftereffects despite copycats being available for quite some time. Nobody can touch maya userbase, too, in the professional segment.I'm always tempted by Blender's add-a-licence promo. More seriously, I think there might be an element of big companies not being able to economically break from Maya easily once refined pipelines are in place. They use Maya, but are also saddled with Maya, like if Blender became Maya tomorrow, they couldn't switch tomorrow. However, I think this could change over time, with buy-and-own-outright making something of a renaissance. I really am grateful that companies like Newtek, Maxon and Foundry (at least with Modo) are still holding their nerve and trusting the user.

Exclaim
12-21-2016, 09:25 AM
Well if the whole industry adopts subscriptions with high prices, Blender will probably become like Wikipedia, and everyone else like the Encyclopedia Britannica.

cove
12-21-2016, 10:24 AM
Thanks all for replying with more than a few comments.

Suprised to read that severe restriction can be applied if subscription is not kept up with other software.
Seems to be normal practice no matter how much mony you paid originally for your software.

Answers to a few comments made about my issue.
---------------------------------------------------------------
Markc
Quote "Will your version 18 not function as stand alone."

All versions of Zona up to and including v18 have life time licences and are not associated with nor affected by the subscription required for
Zona x. So can still use my Zona 18 as normal.

I to have not paid rental or othewise for anything since i was 18 [Now well retired] Doing without/Saving up then pay cash is best.
----------------------------------------------------------------

jwiede
Thanks for explaining differences in subscriptions.

Although i did look at the info about Zona x and the subscription requirments and obviosly i was niggled that they could cut you off almost totally
if you did not pay your next subscription. I still went ahead and bought it anyway.

My main complaint here is in regard to someone who buys into Zona for the first time and it is Zona x that he buys.
He has paid the full price [$95] for the full working version so he should not loose the right to continue to use his software based on not being able or not wanting to continue with a subscription.
Seems justified to put restrictions in place [even canceling any updates/added benefits that have been available since you bought software] if you don,t pay but cutting you off almost all together
just feels so wrong given [and ill say it again] He has paid the FULL PRICE for the COMPLETE WORKING software.

I have emailed Zona about this as there seems to be a "right to ownership
and usability" issue here. Still waiting for there reply.
Iv also requested they refund the price i paid for the upgrade to Zx as i no longer want to be part of there subscription only scheme.

shrox
12-21-2016, 11:35 AM
No subscription for Lightwave. I have spoken.

prometheus
12-21-2016, 11:59 AM
Weird...I donīt get the fixed subscription idea or fear.

Itīs like choosing wether or not I should put on one healthy sneaker shoe on one foot only in the morning and decides to go with high heels on the other because it fits my need of looking good as well.
There is two alternatives at least that can be offered at once..either choose subscription or full perpetual licens for that cycle, none can affect any customer negativly in what a customer wants to choose in any way.

jwiede
12-21-2016, 01:28 PM
He has paid the full price [$95] for the full working version

How much was "full price" of a permanent license for the software prior to switching to subscriptions?

When they switched to subscriptions, did they add a substantial number of new features & functionality?

Schwyhart
12-21-2016, 05:33 PM
My company ditched the Adobe subscription. Now we use Affinity, FCPX, and Motion.

shrox
12-21-2016, 06:28 PM
...Itīs like choosing wether or not I should put on one healthy sneaker shoe on one foot only in the morning and decides to go with high heels on the other because it fits my need of looking good as well...

I live on a slope...

jwiede
12-21-2016, 09:08 PM
I live on a slope...

...so many inappropriate responses, so little time... :devil:

cove
12-22-2016, 05:59 AM
How much was "full price" of a permanent license for the software prior to switching to subscriptions?

When they switched to subscriptions, did they add a substantial number of new features & functionality?

Prior to version 16 Zona was a free to use programme.
Then i paid the offered upgrade price about Ģ29 to go from v14 to v16 and have only paid offered upgrade prices since.
The full cost for a first time buyer of Zona, if i remember right, would have been about $90.

Quote.
"When they switched to subscriptions, did they add a substantial number of new features & functionality?"

Yes they did add more features and impoved functionality features to there subscription version Zona x.
But you would expect new features in a new version anyway wether subscription or not.

I only bought into Zona x with its subscription because i only had to pay an upgrade price of Ģ29 and also because at the time i bought it
i qualified to only have to pay the same cost Ģ29 for the following years subscription so seemed a bargain to me at the time.
Plus the only 2 features i was actually interested in was there adding a "Layers" feature and in particular the new, whats called, "dehazing" feature which
allows you drastically reduce any type of foggyness pesent in an image eg. Imagine someone walking out from a woods early morning and the scene is a
bit to misty for your liking then all you do is apply the "dehazing" function via a single slider to about 10% and the mist is almost gone.
The improvement to the image has to be seen to be believed.
Saves you all the usual messing about with manually adjusting contrast/sharpness etc.
Tried it also on other images eg. night sky star backgrounds. Aerial veiws from high up looking down through well broken clouds to the ground.
All images i tried saw a really nice and quick improvement.

Have not had Zona x for long and have not yet tried out the new
"Layers" feature.

While writing this text and descibing why i bought Zona x and its new featuers im actually haveing second thoughts as to wether to continue with my
request for a refund given how cheap it is for me to use it for the next 2 years and i do like the "dehazing" feature a lot.

As ive indicated previosly my beef was about who owns the software given
that a first time buyer has paid full price for full use of the software.
and normally expect to use it or not any way he chooses.

If Zoner Had introduced there subscription scheme and you are required to pay, right from the start, a monthly fee eg. Ģ8 then this would be a more ecceptable
way to have subscription. Obviously there would be a 12 month contract to sign up to and you would end up paying the full price any way.
Just seems a better way to bring in subscription. It would feel better look better and i would of not had such an issue with it from the perspective of a first time buyer paying full price up front.

Have just now recieved a reply from Zona.
They tell me that "they are legally entitled to operate there subscription scheme in the manner described which is similar to the way other software companies have there subscription schemes".
They also inform me that they are considering my request for a refund.
Will now have to decide wether to withdraw my request for a refund.

ActionBob
12-22-2016, 08:35 AM
Affinity looks quite nice and there is a windows version. :-)

-Adrian

Qexit
12-22-2016, 09:19 AM
I had an 'interesting' experience with subscription vs permanent licensing recently. I'm helping out my nephew by putting together a quotation system for him based around MS Office 2016, principally Excel. I picked up a permanent license of Office 2016 Pro Plus for my desktop PC so I could work on the project at home. A couple of weeks ago, I added a nice little Lenovo laptop to my hardware to make it easier for me to operate at my nephew's office. The laptop was brand new and came with a pre-installed copy of Office 365 that could be activated for a 30 day trial. Office 365 is subscription only and of absolutely no interest to me. So instead of activating the trial, I bought a second Office 2016 Pro Plus License and installed that on the laptop. Using that license to activate the copy of Office was fine. MS installer recognised that I wanted to use Pro Plus License Key and dutifully downloaded and installed the appropriate version of Office. So far, so good. Subsequently, I spent a productive afternoon at my nephew's office working on the quotation system. The fun started the following day when I transferred a copy of my revised work onto my desktop PC. Several of the formulae I had created the previous day were not recognised by the copy of MS Office I had on my desktop. I fired up the system on my laptop and it was still working just fine. I compared version numbers and build numbers for the installed copies of MS Office, they were identical. After a bit of head scratching, several cups of strong, hot tea and a bit of Googling, I tracked dowm the problem. It seems, Microsoft introduced 6 new functions to Excel that are only available to Office 365 subscribers. Anyone who bought a fixed license version gets a set of features frozen at the time the stand alone license version was released. Any upgrades and patches that are released for it only fix bugs. New features are included....just not activated. So how come my laptop version did have the new features ? Simple, if you activate a fixed license through a copy of Office 365 (e.g. the pre-installed trial copy on my laptop) you get all of the features that are current on the version of Office 365 that is available at the time of activation.

The problem now is that to get both copies to have all of the functions, I would have to install a copy of Office 365 on my desktop PC. But that would not help as my nephew only has fixed Office licenses without the new functions, so I have to be very careful to not use any of them. The only solution offered by Microsoft would be to take out a subscription to Office 365 which basically isn't happening.

Exclaim
12-22-2016, 10:18 AM
I had an 'interesting' experience with subscription vs permanent licensing recently. I'm helping out my nephew by putting together a quotation system for him based around MS Office 2016, principally Excel. I picked up a permanent license of Office 2016 Pro Plus for my desktop PC so I could work on the project at home. A couple of weeks ago, I added a nice little Lenovo laptop to my hardware to make it easier for me to operate at my nephew's office. The laptop was brand new and came with a pre-installed copy of Office 365 that could be activated for a 30 day trial. Office 365 is subscription only and of absolutely no interest to me. So instead of activating the trial, I bought a second Office 2016 Pro Plus License and installed that on the laptop. Using that license to activate the copy of Office was fine. MS installer recognised that I wanted to use Pro Plus License Key and dutifully downloaded and installed the appropriate version of Office. So far, so good. Subsequently, I spent a productive afternoon at my nephew's office working on the quotation system. The fun started the following day when I transferred a copy of my revised work onto my desktop PC. Several of the formulae I had created the previous day were not recognised by the copy of MS Office I had on my desktop. I fired up the system on my laptop and it was still working just fine. I compared version numbers and build numbers for the installed copies of MS Office, they were identical. After a bit of head scratching, several cups of strong, hot tea and a bit of Googling, I tracked dowm the problem. It seems, Microsoft introduced 6 new functions to Excel that are only available to Office 365 subscribers. Anyone who bought a fixed license version gets a set of features frozen at the time the stand alone license version was released. Any upgrades and patches that are released for it only fix bugs. New features are included....just not activated. So how come my laptop version did have the new features ? Simple, if you activate a fixed license through a copy of Office 365 (e.g. the pre-installed trial copy on my laptop) you get all of the features that are current on the version of Office 365 that is available at the time of activation.

The problem now is that to get both copies to have all of the functions, I would have to install a copy of Office 365 on my desktop PC. But that would not help as my nephew only has fixed Office licenses without the new functions, so I have to be very careful to not use any of them. The only solution offered by Microsoft would be to take out a subscription to Office 365 which basically isn't happening.

Could Corel Office had met your needs?

Surrealist.
12-22-2016, 10:51 AM
Not sure what will be compatible or not but Open Office is quite a capable suite of apps. Including an Exel-type app:


In the free open-source office suite Apache OpenOffice, Calc is the spreadsheet equivalent to Microsoft Excel. Calc allows you to open and edit files originally saved in other programs and formats, including Excel XLS and XLSX.

Maybe right now it would be a pain but in the long run you could always keep the same versions between you and your nephew. Check it out:

https://www.openoffice.org/product/calc.html

I have been using Open Office for a number of years and never really feel the need to use MS software. But, you know, I am not really a power MS user, so take it with a grain of salt, your mileage may vary, etc. But as a suite it has everything you need from word processing data base and spreadsheet.

Qexit
12-22-2016, 10:53 AM
Could Corel Office had met your needs?It might have but my nephew already had Office 2016 Pro Plus licenses so I went with what he already had available and was using. I like to try and keep things simple :)

Qexit
12-22-2016, 10:58 AM
Not sure what will be compatible or not but Open Office is quite a capable suite of apps. Including an Exel-type app:



Maybe right now it would be a pain but in the long run you could always keep the same versions between you and your nephew. Check it out:

https://www.openoffice.org/product/calc.html

I have been using Open Office for a number of years and never really feel the need to use MS software. But, you know, I am not really a power MS user, so take it with a grain of salt, your mileage may vary, etc. But as a suite it has everything you need from word processing data base and spreadsheet.I have and use OpenOffice and it is pretty useful. However, as mentioned in my other reply, MS Office 2016 Pro Plus is/was the suite being used by my nephew, so I decided to stick with that. Also, much as I hate having to admit it, MS Office is easier to use and is a better solution for this particular project....annoying little glitches aside :)

cove
12-22-2016, 11:58 AM
I had put my concerns to Zona and they have explained there position which quite frankly i cannot argue with given that subscription is becoming more common place.

I decided to email them and cancel my request for a refund so i could continue to use there software.
They have now withdrawn my request for a refund.
Glad this issue is at an end.

Ps. Found other members responses and experiences on this thread
interesting as im not the only one to have had issues.

sadkkf
12-22-2016, 02:21 PM
The worst thing about subscription-based software is it is always "pay to play." The moment you stop paying, you are no longer able to use your source files.

Second to that is the actual cost. Once you're locked in to a subscription plan, there is little incentive for companies to innovate or update their products. Of course, IMO, Adobe had this problem long before CC, but it seems more prevalent now. During normal upgrade cycles (18-24 mos, usually), the cost for a permanent license is less expensive than a subscription for the same term.

As an aside to this, I'm able to use Adobe's CC for only $20/year and I still refuse. I'm on CS6 and that's been doing everything I need.

jeric_synergy
12-22-2016, 05:58 PM
Still not seeing the problem: the cost of updating PS, AE, AI, and buying a slew of web services is higher than the rental.

And my source files don't magically lock up: the TOOLS do. If I were renting a drill press, and stopped paying , I wouldn't grouse about how I can no longer drill a hole with my RENTED drill press. But I can still go to my friend's shop and use HIS drill press.

Surrealist.
12-22-2016, 06:54 PM
As long as it is a choice it is OK. You do the math and make your decision.

Regarding software licenses, they are not the same thing as a tool. It is a legal definition if you want to look it up. It is intellectual - as opposed to real - property. Software can never be anything other than intellectual property, unless you create it. Then it is yours.

There is a pretty good list of differences here:

http://knowledgetonegotiate.blogspot.com/2011/03/intellectual-property-differences.html

But all that legal stuff and the arrogance of Adobe and Autodesk aside, the real problem here is not Adobe or Autodesk, it is us.

OK so this is where maybe it will get controversial. But this is the truth of the matter. And that is it is our responsibility as artists to look out for our best interests and ultimately on our shoulders to provide ourselves with the tools we use to work. Pretty much like the painter who buys his own supplies.

We have access to the same technology that software companies do. We have access to the same human ingenuity as well. So we want to make art and not software. But that is our choice. And by making that choice we sacrifice certain rights and freedoms. For one, we can never own the software we use. We have to depend on other people we don't have any sway over to make something we want to use, and hope they will listen to us when we want changes and pray the software won't break on the next release. Some studios write their own in-house tools. And some companies license that software, like Pixar.

And the reality is, that those guys who started Pixar for example were in effect just people like us. They had a vision and wanted to see it through. And there is nothing making them more special than us other than they did see it through.

So what has been stopping us as a group - I mean broadly as a group - from creating our own tools?

What is stopping us from banding together and forming some kind of consortium of the best coders and plugin developers between us and creating something we can control?

What is stopping us from creating a large Blender contribution in code or in money?

So I am not saying any of these things are practical or not practical.

I am just saying that these are our choices. We get what we get because we make the choice not to take control.

And as long as we choose not to take control there will be someone around to exploit that.

This is what they call life.

m.d.
12-22-2016, 07:43 PM
Still not seeing the problem: the cost of updating PS, AE, AI, and buying a slew of web services is higher than the rental.

And my source files don't magically lock up: the TOOLS do. If I were renting a drill press, and stopped paying , I wouldn't grouse about how I can no longer drill a hole with my RENTED drill press. But I can still go to my friend's shop and use HIS drill press.

Totally agree.....
I am presently going to wind down my subscription including moving adobe hosted sites elsewhere...use cs6 for Photoshop and fully jump into DaVinci. Fusion is my go to compositor, even though a lot of quick stuff and better codec support was handled with AE. DaVinci is nowhere near where PPro is in terms of speed and features (except color of course) but editing is slowly becoming a smaller part of business for me.
I have 30+ terabytes of footage and projects over the past 5 years all tied to adobe....not really worried about using a trial or paying a month to open up the odd project where a client wants a minor change.
As a hobbyist it would definitely be more annoying, but I knew what I was buying going in.

I am more upset about my old motionbuilder 6 license that won't run on any modern OS and that autodesk refuses to give me new software keys for....and that is a permanent license.
Software is never in all practicality permanent.

Aww167
12-22-2016, 10:38 PM
I recently fell heavily out of love with Adobe after discovering that a subscription I'd signed up to wasn't what I thought, and that the financial setup wasn't quite as straightforward either. In hindsight people might reasonably point out that I was negligent in relying on what amounted to a superficial grasp of the deal I had rather than scrutinising the licensing details for a clearer picture. I won't argue over the broader implications of that because it's a fair point, but I can see how others might also get caught out if they're not sufficiently careful.

One slight problem I have with the way their system operates is, when accepting the licence I expected to receive some kind of printed copy afterwards that I could at least refer to in my own time. No such luck. The agreement I accepted vanished into cyberspace as soon as I'd clicked away from the acceptance page, never to be seen again. I subsequently referred to the online faq for any further info, which seemed to represent the specifics of my situation clearly enough; I paid a monthly sum for access to a set of their Creative Cloud apps. I therefore concluded I was on a monthly subscription. It seemed obvious enough in principle. In fact I was on an annual subscription but the distinction eluded me until I decided to cancel. At no time since I'd signed up had Adobe provided me with any documentation concerning my specific deal and whilst I won't claim to have cast an eagle-eyed gaze over the details of the initial offer, I don't recall seeing clearly mentioned that the user should take care to distinguish between two very different subscription models.- I subsequently just received a welcome email, thanks for signing up and we hope you enjoy using our software! Their faq's are comprehensive enough in the detail of the issues they cover - however I feel it is not stated clearly enough that two distinct subscription models exist, and if you think you're on one when in reality you're on the other, you can easily continue in blissful ignorance until you find yourself liable for a rather large bill if you haven't paid sufficient notice when you wish to cancel.

Generally speaking I like the idea of a subscription which gives access to software that you might only want to use intermittently. I also very much like owning the software where it suits me - ok, I know it's only licensed but there's at least a practical element of ownership to a realistic degree. Having both options open is the ideal then, and I wonder why so many companies offer subscription only? Clearly they're thinking along different lines to me as a user then. Taking Adobe as an example, they have created (or more accurately, purchased and developed) software which has achieved a level of market dominance that I would think ensures them a very healthy and profitable existence, at least in the medium term. I still remember thinking of them as a byword for inspired creativity when they were in the earlier stages of establishing a loyal and devoted user-base; now they seem indistinguishable from any other corporate-minded entity which appear practically everywhere one looks these days. I suppose one of the problems then is that when you get to be so big, you cease to think as the smaller entity you once were ; obviously the logistics of running a large business demand the right kind of management, but we (or perhaps I really mean 'they', I'm not sure) don't yet seem to have found how to retain the common, personal and more intimate sense of relationship that reassures you are dealing with human beings pretty much like yourself, rather than a machine that seems to swallow up anything it comes in contact with in order to replicate itself.
Well, I'm not sure if this is a rant or what, but I feel better for getting it out of my system! Apologies if it's off-topic - the subject heading initially brought these issues irrepressibly to the forefront of my mind. Oh yes, and Seasons Greetings to all here while I have the opportunity - the information and advice that passes through these forum posts has been - and continues very much to be invaluable source of assistance and inspiration to me, so very many thanks and best wishes to all !!

samurai_x
12-22-2016, 10:41 PM
Well they are slowly killing motionbuilder and adding its features to maya so they won't really update it anymore. Mudbox has been killed off, too, not officially.
There will be one uber app maya. One app to rule them all. :D
Multi-app who?

spherical
12-22-2016, 10:56 PM
I still remember thinking of them as a byword for inspired creativity when they were in the earlier stages of establishing a loyal and devoted user-base; now they seem indistinguishable from any other corporate-minded entity which appear practically everywhere one looks these days. I suppose one of the problems then is that when you get to be so big, you cease to think as the smaller entity you once were ; obviously the logistics of running a large business demand the right kind of management, but we (or perhaps I really mean 'they', I'm not sure) don't yet seem to have found how to retain the common, personal and more intimate sense of relationship that reassures you are dealing with human beings pretty much like yourself, rather than a machine that seems to swallow up anything it comes in contact with in order to replicate itself.

When these companies were in the earlier stages of establishing themselves, they were run and managed by different, moreover... different types, of people. Now, you have "Hurray for me. Screw you. Deal with it." types in the drivers' seats. It's no longer the Old Guard anymore who paved the way for the snot-nosed n00bs to even have jobs there, let alone dictate policy.

bazsa73
12-23-2016, 01:32 AM
The unfair issue with software subscription at the present is that you cannot browse backward as is the case with a magazine you have subscribed for years. The instant you cancel your subscription you lose access
to everything you have paid for earlier. I am totally against subscription because I think it is a very one sided kind of agreement especially in the hands of Autodesk and Adobe.

Surrealist.
12-23-2016, 02:42 AM
Yes one sided is a great way to describe it. And they also try to say it is in our best interest which is B.S.

http://knowledgetonegotiate.blogspot.com/2011/03/intellectual-property-differences.html

It is in their best interest only. As it should be.

But Spherical points out something also very true. It is true in all kinds of industry not just ours. Executives who once came up trough the ranks, engineers etc., are now replaced with people who graduated in management and finance. So there is a proliferation of a banking/economics mentality which is at odds with the working class.

Lost is the idea that is should be a two-sided benefit rather than one-sided. Even if they have that right. And if there is a minority of people who complain, (which as luck would have it, will be about all there ever is) they can move ahead anyway.

And also if you look at it as a commodity, you have a service product that is now a consumable product. Pretty clever. Strengthens their position in the stock market. And no one in those financial circles will care how many people cry about it in the forums. Rather, they will laugh all the way to the bank.

The Adobe thing has worked out pretty good for me. So I have no complaints. If they had the full versions available now I probably would not buy them. I wold continue renting. But still they should not have cut everyone off like they did, just because they had the right and they knew could get away with it. Pretty clever shrewd folks they are.

TheLexx
12-23-2016, 02:47 AM
Is standalone CS6 missing essential or must-have features from the current subscription version ?

hrgiger
12-23-2016, 02:51 AM
Still not seeing the problem: the cost of updating PS, AE, AI, and buying a slew of web services is higher than the rental.

And my source files don't magically lock up: the TOOLS do. If I were renting a drill press, and stopped paying , I wouldn't grouse about how I can no longer drill a hole with my RENTED drill press. But I can still go to my friend's shop and use HIS drill press.

Except rental is not cheaper. It is for the short term if you're just looking at $600 for a year vs 2 or 3 thousand for a perpetual license that used to be offered for a suite of apps. But you could continue to use those perpetual license for years to come (there are still people using CS6 which hasn't been available to purchase now for several years). The other problem is that you pay regularly to use rental even if you aren't using those tools regularly which is where a perpetual license has a clear advantage. Another of course being that with perpetual, you can choose to upgrade when it is within your budget, rental on the other hand comes due whether you are prepared to pay for it or not. I'm not quite sure what you're saying with your tool analogy, as software tools are licensed to individuals or to studios so the fact that other people may be renting or own a current license of software I no longer use is not going to help me open up files I still have in my possession. I don't have anyone in my immediate vicinity that uses the same software I do so going to a 'friend's shop' is not an option.

The problem with Adobe and Autodesk isn't that they're renting software, its that they've taken away consumers choice by not offering perpetual licenses as well. Its a means for them to bring in a constant revenue all the while having 0 to little incentive to provide substantial improvements to their software because they have no reason to if they don't want to. And the improvements by Adobe over the last 4 years that I've been using Creative Cloud have been mediocre at best.

rustythe1
12-23-2016, 03:18 AM
and what happens (although unlikely but not impossible) if said company becomes the subject of some global conspiracy or tax fraud investigation and gets shut down, millions of people are suddenly with out their tools for work, and especially if you have all your eggs in one basket,
I still use CS6, i think the only area where its going to lack is UHD h265 and so forth (now 8k is already on the horizon, i think 8k youtube already exists) but on a positive, it still works fine under windows 10!

- - - Updated - - -

or a hacker hacks the Lic server and shuts that down?

sadkkf
12-23-2016, 06:25 AM
Still not seeing the problem: the cost of updating PS, AE, AI, and buying a slew of web services is higher than the rental.

And my source files don't magically lock up: the TOOLS do. If I were renting a drill press, and stopped paying , I wouldn't grouse about how I can no longer drill a hole with my RENTED drill press. But I can still go to my friend's shop and use HIS drill press.

For me, upgrading to the CS6 master collection was less expensive than renting the same bundle after two years. And, yes, the tools lock up. Splitting hairs. Not all of us can use a friend's bundle, either.

- - - Updated - - -


Is standalone CS6 missing essential or must-have features from the current subscription version ?

Not that I've noticed. Then again, Adobe has always been slow to add "must-have" features, which is why, I think, many people didn't upgrade with each new release.

S0nny
12-23-2016, 06:35 AM
Except rental is not cheaper. It is for the short term if you're just looking at $600 for a year vs 2 or 3 thousand for a perpetual license that used to be offered for a suite of apps. But you could continue to use those perpetual license for years to come (there are still people using CS6 which hasn't been available to purchase now for several years). The other problem is that you pay regularly to use rental even if you aren't using those tools regularly which is where a perpetual license has a clear advantage. Another of course being that with perpetual, you can choose to upgrade when it is within your budget, rental on the other hand comes due whether you are prepared to pay for it or not. I'm not quite sure what you're saying with your tool analogy, as software tools are licensed to individuals or to studios so the fact that other people may be renting or own a current license of software I no longer use is not going to help me open up files I still have in my possession. I don't have anyone in my immediate vicinity that uses the same software I do so going to a 'friend's shop' is not an option.

Exactly. Honestly every argument about tools and owning the files sound more like a dialectic exercise. If somebody really works, he need to access his files (almost) constantly, expecially if we are talking about 3d assets and scenes in specific formats. Unless some app can perfectly access to .max, .ma, .mb, .ae, etc this is a major problem. And rely on some friends with the same sw intentionally it's a very unprofessional behaviour, IMHO.
Subscription has its benefits, but if it's the only options this are very limited, we are talking about the main app, and not a secondary.



The problem with Adobe and Autodesk isn't that they're renting software, its that they've taken away consumers choice by not offering perpetual licenses as well. Its a means for them to bring in a constant revenue all the while having 0 to little incentive to provide substantial improvements to their software because they have no reason to if they don't want to. And the improvements by Adobe over the last 4 years that I've been using Creative Cloud have been mediocre at best.

200% agree on this also. Can't believe there's even a discussion about this. It's clear that not having a perpetual license or anything similar it's just to force-keep the user base: switching from Max or Maya to anything else will be even more difficult than before for anyone who wants/needs it.

jwiede
12-23-2016, 08:34 AM
The problem with Adobe and Autodesk isn't that they're renting software, its that they've taken away consumers choice by not offering perpetual licenses as well. Its a means for them to bring in a constant revenue all the while having 0 to little incentive to provide substantial improvements to their software because they have no reason to if they don't want to. And the improvements by Adobe over the last 4 years that I've been using Creative Cloud have been mediocre at best.

But to be fair, Autodesk has actually been making very substantial improvements to both their "mainstay" products (Max and Maya), they haven't notable slackened their efforts towards either product. Even looking at Adobe productions, the widespread inclusion of GPU-based off-loading of operations represents a substantial engineering effort, and when you look closely there have been other sizable engineering efforts as well -- it's just that with many Adobe products, their existing feature bases are so large that the relative percentage of change has (unavoidably) dropped compared to in the past, but that's a normal part of any mature product's lifecycle. As long as the absolute effort continues for those products (as well as new products), that's what matters.

More generally, it doesn't seem particularly accurate to suggest that a subscription payment system removes companies' incentive/need to improve their software. As long as there are competitors, customers will continue ongoing value-for-cost assessments over their expenditures. If either company were dealing with a product where they had an actual or effective monopoly, I think that argument might potentially hold merit, sure. That's not the case for either today.

hrgiger
12-23-2016, 03:20 PM
But to be fair, Autodesk has actually been making very substantial improvements to both their "mainstay" products (Max and Maya), they haven't notable slackened their efforts towards either product.

Well Maya certainly gets the lion's share of improvements, I'd feel a bit cheated if I were a Max user in comparison. But in all honesty, no one is even close to Max or Maya in terms of users so to say they have competitors is a bit of a reach. Competing products yes, actual completion, not so much.

And I just don't see the motivation for companies to improve the software if it eats into their bottom line. With perpetual licenses, a software company is forced to make substantial improvements if they want to encourage enough people to upgrade. With rental, your choice is pay or not use the software, despite what improvements the company has made to the software. In the end, subscriptions are purely to the benefit of the company and the whole move is motivated by ensuring a regular revenue stream whether it is merited or not. Aren't both companies about due for another round of layoffs? Just me personally, I'm glad I don't have to support either one of them.

MichaelT
12-23-2016, 06:17 PM
Actually you can still buy CS6, but you need to call them now to do it. At which time (of course) they will try and persuade you not to.

Surrealist.
12-23-2016, 06:25 PM
But I think competing products was a part of what drove them to subscription. Wasn't it?

I seriously doubt that they woke up one day and said, "Hey lets improve our revenue stream and improve our stock!", if everything was already heading in a good direction. It is a major commitment of resources to do that.

That's what I think.

Exclaim
12-23-2016, 10:14 PM
But I think competing products was a part of what drove them to subscription. Wasn't it?

I seriously doubt that they woke up one day and said, "Hey lets improve our revenue stream and improve our stock!", if everything was already heading in a good direction. It is a major commitment of resources to do that.

That's what I think.
You should read some books about business from the early 1900s. Investors make decisions in these companies, and they might not even know how to install or open Maya. Revenue streams and investor relations are the chief responsibility of a CEO. Product development falls in line way down the list. Proof? Has Autodesk added more original technology to their offerings, or have the incorporated a bunch of big name components to their trademarks and products? Adobe did the same thing with Macromedia.

jeric_synergy
12-24-2016, 03:24 PM
If users want significant input into the direction of their software, I suggest they start paying for Blender.

Sure, you may h8 the blender UI, but have you put yourself into a position where you might have a voice in the direction of the UI? I bet, oh, 90% of blender users haven't given the BF a dime.

Even better, form a coalition, get a signficant $, and hire some programmer to write a shell for blender that will work the way y'all cooperatively (ha!) agree. While writing a renderer may be beyond almost everybody's capability, writing a set of scripts is much more doable.

+++++
I"m not sure what Exclaim means about "books....from the early 1900s". ?? The Golden Age? The age of 'trusts', or as we call them now, 'monopolys'.

Surely monopolys are about to be better received, politically, than they have for a while. :devil:

jwiede
12-24-2016, 04:00 PM
While writing a renderer may be beyond almost everybody's capability

Actually, writing a render engine from scratch is a very common late undergrad-level or early grad-level assignment for collegiate/Uni computer graphics students. Writing a commercial-quality render engine is a much more involved proposition, obviously, but the same could be said for _any_ commercial-quality software product versus a "student-level project" -- there's nothing particularly unique about render engines' difficulty in that regard.

@Exclaim: Large corporation public equity ownership today is _very_ different from what existed in the 1900s, when individual ownership of large portions of public corporations was much more common. Now, most large public corporations are primarily owned (excluding founders) by other corporations/equity firms. The weight of individual voices among top equity holders (again, excluding founders) in large public corporations is vastly less today than it was in the 1900s, and that has greatly reduced the kind of individual-driven leadership problems of the sort you're describing -- and instead replaced them with a completely different set of problems.

Where the kind of problems you're citing stemmed from an "inappropriate specificity" of business concerns, the problems today stem more from an "over-generalization" of business concerns (as well as a major reduction in investment concern time-frame compared to back then). The situation has kind of moved from one end of the axis to the other: Where before individuals had too much voice, now they have too little.

Surrealist.
12-25-2016, 01:06 AM
You should read some books about business from the early 1900s.

What books? I am actually fairly well read about economics and in particular the political economic history of the US. But if you have anything to add it is always good to find books that shed light on various aspects. It is worth noting though aside from the fact that these subjects are forbidden here, that this is not something that originated in the US nor can be related to even the last 2 centuries. It actually goes back a long long way. At least as far as Aristotle and others. Surely even beyond that even. Political Economic factors are fairly complex but simplified greatly when you follow the history of it and the families involved. Enough said.



and they might not even know how to install or open Maya. Revenue streams and investor relations are the chief responsibility of a CEO.

You are absolutely right about that. And in post #46 I eluded to the same thing.


Product development falls in line way down the list. Proof? Has Autodesk added more original technology to their offerings, or have the incorporated a bunch of big name components to their trademarks and products? Adobe did the same thing with Macromedia.

Unfortunately here there are some things you are discounting. Namely the fact that Autodesk has in fact been really taking off with its development of Maya. And has even introduced a new technology with a node-based procedural modeling workflow in 3D Max. With stated long term goals for each app and workflow.

There is really no indication that the last year of subscription has caused development to slow down. And no indication it will.

So the facts of the situation kill the assumption - in this case - that the subscription model kills incentive and innovation.

While the CEO class has lost touch with the reality of the working class and the technology, they deal with finances.

Another group within the company deals with the technology. And those people are sincerely interested in making the best product that they can. It is not rocket science to see that if the technology does not improve and innovation ceases their products will loose ground in the market. And the CEOs clearly see this as they have approved the programs that the development team has proposed thus far.

And considering it is likely a change in that market - due to several factors - that caused the CEO class to move to subscription, it is clear that they also see the need to have to also continue innovating to stay on top.

Surrealist.
12-25-2016, 01:32 AM
If users want significant input into the direction of their software, I suggest they start paying for Blender.

Sure, you may h8 the blender UI, but have you put yourself into a position where you might have a voice in the direction of the UI? I bet, oh, 90% of blender users haven't given the BF a dime.

Even better, form a coalition, get a significant $, and hire some programmer to write a shell for blender that will work the way y'all cooperatively (ha!) agree.

I think a consolidated effort could come out of this sentiment. I really do. I don't actually always agree with Blender development. And many times they actually earn their reputation. I point to the close dialog as a perfect example.

After years of debate over not even having one. With the reasons being quite surreal to be kind, finally they answer with this useless work of wonder:

http://forums.newtek.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=135397&d=1482653748

So I ask. Why would you go through the trouble to code this and included this whenever scene changes have not been saved, and not also include a button to save and then close? Nope. You have to click Cancel, and then save.

In another thread I eluded to 5 things about Blender... no one took me up on the challenge. This would have been one of them. Not a show stopper to be honest. And not a workflow killer. But clearly a 180 turn in from a convention that pretty much any app on the market has. To my knowledge.

And certainly not a convention that would stop you from learning and using Blender. I don't think there are any really.

But definitely a departure. And it makes no sense.

Sometimes they display brilliance. Sometimes they betray complete and utter lack of the most common sense possible. It is maddening.

I think an answer to that would be a branch of Blender, that could somehow co-exist with Blender development. Several exist for specific industry and application.

It is definitely worth considering as a 3rd Party effort to hire a few programmers to go at it. However it should be noted that a great deal of the main code of Blender is written in C. According to one developer I talked to who is writing his own app from the ground up, this was one of the reasons he decided not to build a branch of Blender. That and the complexity and time it would take to understand the Blender code.

So it is a good idea, but would take a lot of thought and planning going in.

The other option is to create a collision of part time plugin writers and artist/developers to create a new app. I don't know. Sometimes it seems like something should be attempted someplace or we are only going to have more domination.

jwiede
12-25-2016, 04:07 AM
The other option is to create a collision of part time plugin writers and artist/developers to create a new app. I don't know. Sometimes it seems like something should be attempted someplace or we are only going to have more domination.

Certainly Isotropix is trying, and there are various other less-established efforts as well. Clarisse is interesting is that it is achieving industry penetration due to its exemplary handling of absolutely huge scenes, but their focus is still rather tightly-constrained w.r.t. industry niches (and not particularly visualization, the largest overall sector). They're worth watching, but honestly I don't see either Isotropix or SideEffects displacing Autodesk any time soon.

Oddly enough, MAXON actually has a decent strategic position, between the relationship with Adobe, and the Nemetschek parentage and CAD/CAM knowledge/influences, as a more serious contender against Autodesk. Cinema4D is also more general-purpose than either Houdini or Clarisse, and already has solid footholds in many different 3D markets. If MAXON's staffing up over the last few years works out, I'd say they're likely in the best position to become a serious market competitor to Maya and/or Max -- Nemetschek's equity position also makes MAXON significantly more resistant to Autodesk predation than either of the other companies. Still, that would require MAXON to push forward simultaneously in more areas than they are currently, so again that entirely seems to depend on them scaling up without over-reaching.

C4D's architecture has numerous advantages, and in some ways is one of the most advanced in use having completed their full-double architecture switch among other major recent internal upgrades. There are still bottlenecks, such as dealing with huge numbers of object manager entities, but as companies like Isotropix have demonstrated, such issues are tractable.

It doesn't hurt that C4D's SDK is exceptionally open and efficient for third-party development, nor that MAXON's got such a focus on quality control, both promising attributes for a software company attempting a major scaling effort. MAXON's demonstrated ability at in-situ infrastructure improvement, and the development methodologies evidenced by their success at doing so (as well as their perception of the need to do so, and execution thereof) are further promising signs for C4D's longevity. Time will tell, but apparently quite a few third-party companies see C4D's potential as well, more evidence of the validity of their overall approach.

Morgan Nilsson
12-26-2016, 10:58 AM
Subscription as an option is great, or even better, a rent-to-own like Allegorithmic.

Having a lot smaller initial fee will make it a lot more attractive to people like me who do not feel like shoving out a massive fee right out of the bat.

Worth to note is that is why I am on Houdini Indie again, simply extremely cheap yearly cost, considering you get the all the upgrades and the immense power of Houdini for a very cheap price. If SideFX ever decide to go with a rent-to-own for the full Houdini FX package I would immediately move over to it. Autodesks monthly or yearly prices are just too flipping insane for the average user, and Maya LT is just too restrictive for anything but game dev, and even then quite restricted for that purpose as well.

MichaelT
12-28-2016, 05:08 PM
Maya LT sucks for a game dev too. Just making a normal map is a problem.

samurai_x
12-30-2016, 08:23 PM
Maya LT sucks for a game dev too. Just making a normal map is a problem.

Better to use handplane or xnormal anyway whatever 3d app you use to get good bakes.
Even Naughtydog sculpts in Zbrush and bakes in xnormals for their 3d assets. They did recently switch to Substance for baking.

Surrealist.
12-30-2016, 10:06 PM
Baking in Maya is excruciatingly slow. Even for color ID maps.

Apps I use for baking are Blender and Mudbox. Depends on the size of the mesh. I don't use Xnormal that much anymore. And never found the Substance bakes to be any good. That could have changed.

erikals
01-01-2017, 09:36 AM
If SideFX ever decide to go with a rent-to-own for the full Houdini FX package I would immediately move over to it.
Houdini FX for $2700 and Rent-To-Own would be quite interesting.
my "problem" with Houdini is that it excels at Nodes+FX stuff, for other things it's just "ok" or even sometimes clunky.

with the upcoming fluids simulator in LightWave, i might move a bit away from Houdini.
bit early to tell, but i've invented some water-fluid hacks that will come in handy for Deep Rising FX.
http://forums.newtek.com/showthread.php?151880-Deep-Rising-Fx-Potential-fluid-simulator

if... all goes as planned.

JohnMarchant
01-01-2017, 10:52 AM
Houdini is great at what it does well, FX, water, Fire and such, if your a coder and very strong in nodes its great. Modeling and such i stick to LightWave, Houdini is not that good for modeling.

jeric_synergy
01-01-2017, 11:29 AM
Modeling and such i stick to LightWave, Houdini is not that good for modeling.
It seems like there's a move towards fragmentation with such good&powerful apps available for particular tasks, modeling, shading, rendering, painting.... Almost like a completely integrated product would just be silly.

hrgiger
01-01-2017, 12:04 PM
It seems like there's a move towards fragmentation with such good&powerful apps available for particular tasks, modeling, shading, rendering, painting.... Almost like a completely integrated product would just be silly.

Not at all. For every app out there to love, you'll probably find things about it that dont work so well for you. Its best if you can find something that gets you 60 to 80%of the way there and use other apps that are better for certain things to take you the rest of the way.

jeric_synergy
01-01-2017, 02:22 PM
3 different apps that you love, each taking you 60% of the way, still makes one half-baked integrated thing look silly.

jwiede
01-01-2017, 07:25 PM
It seems like there's a move towards fragmentation with such good&powerful apps available for particular tasks, modeling, shading, rendering, painting.... Almost like a completely integrated product would just be silly.

But there have always been tons of smaller, specialized apps available, that is hardly anything "new" in the 3D industry. The market itself has grown and matured tremendously, and such growth unavoidable increases the absolute number of customers with outlier situations where specialized apps might be needed. Further, the "main 3D platform apps" (Max and Maya) have broadened their functionality quite significantly over the last decade, which suggests their customers are less dependent now on specialized apps than they were before.

On what are you basing the assertion that there's a increasing move towards fragmentation/specialization as a general 3D market trend?

I can definitely see how declining third-party plugin options, and a rather limited feature growth in Lightwave could result in growing use of specialized apps within the Lightwave customer base. However, for other "3D platform apps" like Maya, Max and C4D, there's plenty of evidence their third-party plugin markets are thriving and growing, and as they have significantly broadened available feature areas for those apps (and as the plugins that did so have visible success and growth), that further indicates customers on those other 3D platform apps are less likely using specialized apps to obtain such functionality.

shrox
01-01-2017, 08:13 PM
Nyet.

samurai_x
01-01-2017, 08:25 PM
It seems like there's a move towards fragmentation with such good&powerful apps available for particular tasks, modeling, shading, rendering, painting.... Almost like a completely integrated product would just be silly.

Not seeing it.
Maya, C4d, modo are integrating tools considered outside of the main app. Its not as powerful as a stand alone app, like zbrush for sculpting can do, but for most people especially hobbyist, the built in sculpting, painting, etc in the main app are quite capable.

Surrealist.
01-01-2017, 10:49 PM
It seems like there's a move towards fragmentation with such good&powerful apps available for particular tasks, modeling, shading, rendering, painting.... Almost like a completely integrated product would just be silly.

I guess I agree with you on a very high level at least from the point of view of what artists wind up doing. And also from the view that even though companies try there is still only so much they can accomplish to that end. There is a difference between a software trend and what is practical to accomplish. But they are all trying. Even Zbrush is trying to be more well rounded in its own way last few releases. I think it is kind of a mad scramble to capture more of the market, along with the practicality that it is way cool not to have to move between apps. Not to mention that if you (Autodesk) are developing on 3 parallel platforms (Maya MotionBuillder, Mudbox) where there is potentially more and more overlap in Maya, that it makes sense to put all of your eggs in one basket. Max is something else I think. Seems like it is a separate market. Whereas Maya MotionBuilder and Mudbox are more closely related. And that last bit is a biased opinion for sure. :)

Asticles
01-02-2017, 03:13 AM
Not seeing it.
Maya, C4d, modo are integrating tools considered outside of the main app. Its not as powerful as a stand alone app, like zbrush for sculpting can do, but for most people especially hobbyist, the built in sculpting, painting, etc in the main app are quite capable.

There is a big difference between hobbyist and pro market, and in pro market, there are big differences between vfx, game, architecture and ilustration ones. For a hobbyist it is far better to have all in one solution, and for the others, an specialised solution integrated in a pipeline should be better. Imho.

Also, small studios have different needs than big ones. It is difficult to aim to everyone, unless you go to a higly specialised solution. But in that case, if your package is big, the price would be also unaffordable to small studios or individuals.

Does anyone knows what is LW3D group aiming for?

Surrealist.
01-02-2017, 03:25 AM
It is true but you can not make the assumption that a hobbyist and any particular pro market have different technical needs. There are a lot of professional projects that do not need the best animation, the best sculpting for example in the same pipeline. Toon animation for example does not really need the top notch Zbrush modelers that a AAA game trailer needs as produced by Blur for example. For some projects, a Maya with decent sculpting and amazing animation or even Modo with a good deal of everything will be a great choice. Some studios focus on TV commercial work that could be done as easily with Blender, Modo, or Maya. And in many cases the Maya projects have - in the past - turned to LightWave for rendering.

Ultimately I think LW 3D Group is aiming for as much of an end to end solution as possible. But it has never had sculpting or painting. I think you could probably expect first, immediate integration into pipelines with new attractive technology followed with bringing that same technology to all of the tools in a way to attract a more, Modeling, Rigging and Animation end to end pipeline with continued tight integration with Zbrush. I think it would be a while before we see sculpting and painting. Or who knows they may see more of a market in that first. Hard to say.

Asticles
01-02-2017, 03:35 AM
Lightwave lacks some features to be an end-to-end solution nowadays, maybe if they develop basic sculpting and painting, with remeshing and good uv generation...

Edit: A lot of things only for a release. But sculpting in modeler will be very slow, unless they come with a new trick like changing the visualization only when sculpting.

Asticles
01-02-2017, 03:42 AM
It's a pity but this is what Modo has already. What can Lightwave do if they want to be better than modo as an end-to-end solution? Only price?

Edit: Sculpting in modo is less than optimal, but you can do some mesh tweaking.

Surrealist.
01-02-2017, 04:06 AM
Yeah. I agree. I think I was trying to say. End to End in the way that it has traditionally been used. Modeling, animation and final rendering. So that would be the first target.

Exclaim
01-02-2017, 09:00 AM
Lightwave lacks some features to be an end-to-end solution nowadays, maybe if they develop basic sculpting and painting, with remeshing and good uv generation...

Edit: A lot of things only for a release. But sculpting in modeler will be very slow, unless they come with a new trick like changing the visualization only when sculpting.

Third power's LW brush not enough?

jwiede
01-02-2017, 07:52 PM
Third power's LW brush not enough?

Not really, no. It's very useful, not suggesting otherwise (I own a license), but it doesn't really compare in functionality to the sculpting features in C4D or even MODO. LWBrush is okay for minor tweaking and reshaping of existing geometry, but their full-on sculpting toolsets are much more powerful/flexible.

Sculpting workflows are intended as a way to work in 3D space and forms removing (or at least minimizing) concerns about topology while doing so -- sculpting toolsets were created as a separate, alternative/augmentative approach to geometry-based 3D modeling. Even though C4D's and MODO's sculpting toolsets are nowhere near as good as the likes of ZBrush or 3DCoat in terms of isolating away topology concerns, they still allow the sculptor to avoid most concerns about topology (other than overall density) during creation.

In contrast, LWBrush is entirely focused on topology and geometry-based manipulation. It's very useful at doing so, and provides some (arguably) innovative tools for doing so, but it is still ultimately a "3D modeling tool" (as opposed to a sculpting tool), because it works with (and only with) geometry-based representations and elements.

Hope that helps!