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archiea
08-01-2005, 04:34 PM
http://www.newtek.com/news/releases/08-01-05d.html

I guess NT knows what they are doing..... Uh.. WHAT ARE THEY DOING!?!?!

I mean.. The gang here has been asking for SSS, occlusion shaders, graphical texture/expression editor, faster feedback performance...

Then there's the mac end of things like OPEN GL speed issues, general stability...

Oh, and the discovery edition.. hello?


..and then there's just my 2 cents... making LW seem less of an hodge-podge of plug-ins, and making it more integrated.. Like the redundencies from the older code (scene editor, although I do like the different functioality of both, but not exclusive of each other), the antiquated interface both visually and functionally (needs a face lift and need more asynchronious funtion like the old Real 3D). Adding proper Fur support similar to how dynamics is integrated. Also having these systems talk to ewach other, which dynamics is really starting to show that promise. Fprime being a standard functionality.. I mean who should better at doing proxy LW renders than newtek!??! How about built in support for outputting passes ala AOV passes like renderman.. I;m not talking about the photoshop passes, but full float render passes.

I mean, much credit is due to NT tenacity as of late, especially with this announcement of LW 9. But cutting the prices.. I mean.. I've said this before.. but NT seems to be going for the cutsie Hash crowd rather than the more polished hi-end crowd. Yes, there is a wisdom in selling to the masses, in fact NT's philosophy was to empower them with the original toaster. Its just seems like back in 2000 with the release of 6, LW was really maturing both in code and in market, like it was for the smart 3D guy who wasn't afraid to wear several hats and roll up his sleeves. It seems like that vector took a tangent .. with 8 we went for a retro look to the gui.. yes we did there is no debating that.. when the purpose was to show that the product was refreshed.... and while the features were great... it still had that tacked on feel.

LW is a great app.. I wouldn't be where I am today without it.. but with this price reduction.. some long standing issues still unresolved, and this emphasis on the number of features... it just worries me. Imean everyone loved Hash because it featured alot for its price.. but it was buggy.. to the point of being unusable for some parts. I just dont want to see LW go that route...

On the new LW splash page.. its great to see Sincity displayed... who better than Robert Rodrigues to sell the roll-up-your-sleeves aspect of LW. But I can't mention the new page without pointing out how tacky some of it looks..especially the top title page... It just has that loud "notice me" thing that kinda paralleled some of the convention demoing in the past that cheapens the whole thing. :)

Well.. its just my 2 cents.. I wish NT the best as always... I just hope they know what they are doing!!! :D

WizCraker
08-01-2005, 09:27 PM
i doubt the price will stay under $800, if you ever noticed in the past NewTek and other companies always have a special limited time pricing around SIGGRAPH. They even say Limited Time for the pricing in their press releases.

But if they do keep the price under $800 that does not mean they are turning into a cheap software company. It almost sounds if you judge the quality of something by how much it costs. If that is the case maybe it is time for you to leave and join the user base of Alias.

Gui Lo
08-01-2005, 10:46 PM
Frankly, the 3D marketplace is very ugly. There are many packages out there, and few customers to sell to. -Jay Roth

I think the reduction in price is to allow the user base of 3d users to grow. As you say NewTek has traditionally empowered the amateur/hobyist with professional tools. This allows LW users to then become LW professionals.

Having been founded on this principle I guess it is hard for NewTek to switch.


Gui Lo

hrgiger
08-01-2005, 10:50 PM
I think the price drop is a great idea. Lightwave is going to be a hard offer to pass up with the price drop and all the new features that will make their way into the next few updates (8.5 & 9). With a price drop like this, I could see quite a few people coming on board and expanding the user base significantly.

Lamont
08-02-2005, 12:11 AM
My only gripe with the upgrade to 9 is:

7.5 and older get LW 9 for $395 ($495 w/printed manual).

8 and above get LW 9 for $395 ($495 w/printed manual).

It would be sweeter if it were $295/$395 for 8 and above. I care, but at the same time I don't because I'm getting it regardless.

Maybe just remove the "LW 7 and older" line and do this :D :

8.5 and older get LW 9 for $395 ($495 w/printed manual). YOU KNOW YOU WANT TO BUY!!

jorbedo
08-02-2005, 12:50 AM
Sorry but somebody can specify which year?, they said on the last quarter?, of 2006? or maybe this year?

LW9, I will wait for 9.5, NT is like microsoft, they only have good apps after the first version, I expect to see a mess of plug-ings, workarounds, and dropped 3rd party applications, only because is good for the user base.

NT Develop LW9, play a little with it, and after finding all the expected bugs, then realease 9.5, that would be great for the users base.

Guys don't expect a robust application the first time.

I don't think that NewTek have a enough space to mess around, they are feeling the heat, JUST LOOK THE FORUMS, a lot of complains, bugs, workarounds, etc, and the only people that are 100% happy with LW is the big studios that have propgramming resources to fix what is wrong.

How many of you are willing to finance NewTek again, pay and have your package 1 year later?. What if they bundle LW with a Tums bottle? that would be a terrefic offer. I only expect that Dick De Jong & Molly Dinkins (Yeah guys behind the scam of NewTek pro) are not behind the development of NewTek Offers, this is only my toughs, not classified information.

archiea
08-02-2005, 01:58 AM
ah.. the old "cheaper is better" crowd... "hey LW is now $99.0... The price of a plug-in!!!" "Thats great!!!"

I've said it before... I'll say it again... assuming that the manner that NT spends money hasn't fundamentally changed, how does less dollars for development equal better product? Sure the theory is that a smaller price brings in more seats, thus more money. And its a sound theory especially considering the trend in CG software the past 5 years... shake, combustion, Adobe CS, Maya.....

The problem is the value associated to that software and ability drops.....

For example... the "cheapest" compositor for a while was After FX, followed by combustion, DF, Shake, then Inferno as far as "cost". however.. parallel with that "cost" (meaning the gear and software) was also the rate of the artist.. training in each was in scale to their cost, thus the higher rate of the respective artist..

Working as a compositor.. I knew all of those apps and more professionallly except for DF, which I knew form just noodling... I earned most as a Flame artist, shake and combustion about 50% less money, and then AF (after effects). Then Combustion was 1/3rd its price, and rates went down with it to AF rates because the market was flooded with freshly trained combustion people... I mean people that knew where the buttons were but weren't necessarily compositors....

This happened to Shake to a certain extent around 2002 where after taking a rate hit I was able to bring my rate back to 2001 rates. The problem here, again, was that the market was flooded with self-proclaimed "Shake gurus" that didn't even know the basic concept of matte multiplication, color correcting, and compositing. Worse of all, they were accepting apprentice rates even though they were "gurus"... they just didn't know.. anything... So if "faux-gurus" were getting already less than my rate.. what argument did I have... Uber-guru?

Point is, you have an intelectual property.. assigned a value... part of that is your training and your investment in that. When that 'values" is essentially halved, do you really think you aren't going to be affected/

Sure, the indie-contractors here are all for the democratization of tools, in a way thats what Newtek, lightwave and the toaster were originally about. But at the time it was self serving... it appealed to many of us because it was the ONLY way to get into the biz. I saw alot of online editors without jobs because of that...

"Yeah, but it should be about talent, and if you rock, you'll never be out of a gig."


Yeah well in theaory that works, but cheaper is such an immediate better to many producers.. I know of alot of good animators shafted by that process... And believe me you Indie contractors.. there's a 22 year old nippping at your heels, whether you know it or not.. here you are in your late 30's early 40's... perhaps with a family or with plans for one.. and here's a kid that can stay up all night without a care in the world. This industry is cruel to the veterens...

Cheaper prices.. whoo-hoo.. yeah!!! Well, thats just not you LWer's saying that.. but also your clients....

Many got into this as a hobby, and now do what they love. Problem is that so many do not attach a value to what they do. they are loving every minute of it. look at how stranaham had to make the hard line decision between LW and his family.. and bless him for it... Thats alot of eggs in a basket that is currently half its price....

I stayed out of LW professionally and pursued compositing because of a bad experience I had early in my career... no matter how hard I worked... no matter how polished my work was, no matter what kudos I had from my fellow peers, whenever I did 3D in LW for this post house I worked at, the producers never took it seriously... The clients loved it, my peers were intrigued by my ingenuity, but the producers hated that it was done on a "home computer". Their impression was that it was cheap... their impression of NT at the trade show with the gaudy demos and the evangelic fans shoving down your throat how much better TV paint was compared to a Henry or Flame; this was something that gave them the impression that my work was cheap.. even though it was praised by the client and even by the veteren GFX artist at the facility.

I learned there the concept of "value" associated to a skill. it cost me $5000 and my own time to learn LW. it cost 5K just for on site training in Flame (compared to a training video for LW at $59). The gear was $300,000, compared to the toaster/amiga $5000. As a result, my value as an 'artist" was far higher in Flame thaan in LW. Later, as a flame artist I sold myself as a dual artist knowing LW, with the ability to add 3D assets without having to hire outside.. They loved my reel, they loved what I can do.. they just hated what I did it in... Lightwave... why not alias.... they can sell that...

My theory is that kids, people starting out.. they can sense whats good.. we all did. I don't think that cheapening LW opens the flood gates to these users. I think that it cheapens our craft. You can open LW to users in different scales the way Alias does... a discovery edition (which we still don't have).. saving to a proprietary format was genious IMHO of Alias... and they have maya complete and unlimited. its been discussed here to death the whole notion of splitting LW feature set to a lite and pro version. I was in the group opposed thinking that this would raise the price of LW, and confuse the workflow (working the lite way or the pro way.. like SAS lite and pro). Had I understood that it would cheapen the price, I would have opted for the split.

Interesting to see how steadfast discreet is with 3D studio MAX's pricing. Speaking with a Max-head friend of mine, he pointed out how its remained a niche market, but so has its scales. Similar to flame.

I know I'll get flamed for this post, but its really a point thats backed with hard data from my 15+years of experience...

Also keep in mind how this affects plug-in prices... can plug-ins be $500? Wouldn't we use the new LW base price as a baseline for value? Will the extra seats allow folks like worley to lower his price with the expectation of more sales?

As another example.. I don't think Shake is worth its 3K price.. it should be $1500 tops. But its price scale keeps it up out of the reach of AF and combustion users... and my rate stays up there as well...

Also... I can attribute my current standard of living to working in Maya in a studio environment with prorprietary software. This keeps my skillset specialized, and at a high value.

hey, I love NT, and this community, so what I say is out of concern that Newtek is underselling themselves.. as they always have been IMHO. the community of artist here are inventive and extremely open to new techniques and sharing. I just wanted to share something that strikes a nerve with me and just hope that you guys just chew on it a bit...

thanks for reading....

colkai
08-02-2005, 04:25 AM
http://www.newtek.com/news/releases/08-01-05d.html

I guess NT knows what they are doing..... Uh.. WHAT ARE THEY DOING!?!?!
.....
But cutting the prices.. I mean.. I've said this before.. but NT seems to be going for the cutsie Hash crowd rather than the more polished hi-end crowd.
...
Well.. its just my 2 cents.. I wish NT the best as always... I just hope they know what they are doing!!! :D
Ya know, I've never got this idea that if something is cheap it must be rubbish or somehow not taken seriously.
I'm sure Newtek are very keenly clear on what they are doing.
I mean, come on XSI at $495 - I don't hear anyone suggesting that Softimage are getting it wrong, instead, all you hear is of how Newtek had better wise up and how Softimage have got it right and are puuling more people into their package.
Yet, when Newtek bring their price down - it's a failure, go figure.

My car only cost 6,000 on the road, it has done 125,000 care free miles, if it had cost me 10,000 - it would still be the same vehicle.

Lightwave is evolving, as are Newtek, we either want them to compete, or we want them to fail, I'll take the former please Bob.


ah.. the old "cheaper is better" crowd... "hey LW is now $99.0... The price of a plug-in!!!" "Thats great!!!"
And why shouldn't it be? if they bumped the price up, are you saying you'd be first in line because "ahh - more expensive - MUST be better" ?


I've said it before... I'll say it again... assuming that the manner that NT spends money hasn't fundamentally changed, how does less dollars for development equal better product?
You're making some mighty big assumptions there.
Look at what we know, Newtek have brought on board more programmers, from varying sources. Now then, there new people will require some form of recompense for their efforts I'd wager. :p So my guess is, Newtek will be investing money in these folks.

Seriously, think about it for just one minute, they can sell 10 copies at $1500 or 30 at $795 - sometimes being cheaper sells.
I work for a charity, we were selling an item at 4.50 - it just wasn't moving, we reduced that to 3.99, suddenly, we are having trouble keeping up with demand. It's the same darn product, but now, instead of selling 1 a month, for 51p less, we are selling like 10+ a month. Do the math.
Newtek is a business, doesn't matter if you're perceived to be "big" because your products cost a fortune, a fortune you pass on to clients. If the stock ain't going out the door - ya still gonna be in the red.
As for passing on saving to clients - this is bad why?
Hey - I can do this job at a higher cost than the other guy, please pick me!
hehe...
Let's face it - the client is gonna want stupidly cheap regardless of if you paid $795 or $7,950 for your software. :p

mattclary
08-02-2005, 04:47 AM
Archie, in the day of $495 XSI, I don't think Newtek can afford not to drop their price a little. 3D used to be a niche market, nowadays every kid out there playing Quake or making game mods is a potential customer. And when those kids grow up and get a job or form their own company, guess what software is going to be near and dear to their heart?

I want Newtek to make money. If they don't, they won't be around long. As long as they can make money, I say the lower the price, the better.

hrgiger
08-02-2005, 05:01 AM
Archiea, look at it this way.

Lightwave 8

New Customers who can afford Lightwave 8 at $1500 - 2500 X $1500
People upgrading their 7 to 8 at $495 - 5000 X $495

Total money brought in: - $6,225,000


Lightwave 9

New Customers who can afford $800 - 4500 X $800
People upgrading their 8 to 9 at $395 - 6000 X $395
People coming back from other apps (who
left Lightwave because of slow render, no edges,
no ngons, no modeler in layout, etc.....) - 500 X $800

Total money brought in: - $6,370,000


Obviously, I'm pulling these numbers out of thin air and have no idea what kind of numbers Newtek makes in sales but there are some things I believe to be true about this speculation:

1. I believe more people will upgrade from their Lightwave 8 to 9 then did upgrade their Lightwave 7 to Ligthwave 8.

2. I believe there are a lot of users that left Lightwave before and during the Lightwave 8.X cycle because of key missing features, not to mention lack of a well unified app and/or strong core. With the changes we're looking forward to in 8.5 and 9, I think we'll see at least a few of them come back.

3. I believe there are a lot of people that normally end up going with an app like Animation Master or Truespace simply because of price. If they see they can get a proven, production quality tool like Lightwave, I think we'll see many more new sales then we did in 8.

If you can accept that, then I think Lightwave 9 will pull in as much if not more more then the 8.x cycle did.

starbase1
08-02-2005, 05:44 AM
I understand the concerns over a viable income stream, to support the product we know and mostly love. :hey:

But speaking purely personally, I think it was overpriced before this.

I waited until there was a considerable drop in the cost, (and printed manual included) before I moved on to :lwicon: v8. I previously looked at the cost, and decided it was better spent on plugging other gaps in my graphics, such as poser import tools, the cheap down load version of Vue, learning materials, and so on.

When I first got :lwicon: it was clearly ahead of the pack at the price point, the cheaper ones clearly did not come close to delivering. (I consider myself round about the 'prosumer' level incidentally...)

But now there are quite a large number of low end progs around that can deliver adequate results. And many of them have niche strengths that beat :lwicon: in that area - I'm thinking of things like the landscape progs, dedicated 3d titlers, poser is more approachable for doing figures, and so on.

At the top end, I also wonder how many applications the market can support? There's the custom stuff for the seriously big graphics houses, that's not going to go away...

I think the obvious model to go for is Photoshop. With a very well thought out split between the cheap amateur version and the full featured one, they have done a very impressive job in both markets, and that's not easy. Also there's the obvious upgrade path there.

I'm still VERY intrigued by the snuggling up to Vue... How would you like to see Vue5 instancing, skies, landscapes and vegetation systems inside :lwicon: ?

Biggest problem I can see with going for the masses is that it still takes a HUGE effort to learn the intricacies of :lwicon: , (unavoidably). Is Joe Public ready for that? Is the support team ready for a flood of people who haven't noticed that talent is not included, and can't open the box?!?

Nick

colkai
08-02-2005, 05:47 AM
...And I believe you're dead on in your assessment there hg.

Yeah, I had a dream I may get edges in LW8.5 - but just reading what is currently going on development wise and the proposed (initial) list for LW9 makes for interesting reading.

I think there will always be the naysayers and "Newtek is playing catch up" team, but I have to think this list will pull some back from the edges and wave a big "welcome home" flag to others. :)

Of course, stability is a big question mark, but for those casting dispersions on the list and estimated release time, I'd state that Newtek have never yet knowingly issued a false statment about what is in a release.

Sure, if you don't mind missing out on a discount, it can be prudent to wait until users have hammered out the software for a bit before upgrading.

Luckily, I'm one of those folks who do this because LW is affordable (now even more so), and is powerful & flexible, so I'll be one of those in the pre-order queue. :p

colkai
08-02-2005, 05:59 AM
Is the support team ready for a flood of people who haven't noticed that talent is not included, and can't open the box?!?
Heheh,
Nick, I've worked in devlopment and tech support for long enough to know, you're never ready for some end-users! :p Yup, the ole "my screens gone black" brigade. ;)


I'm still VERY intrigued by the snuggling up to Vue... How would you like to see Vue5 instancing, skies, landscapes and vegetation systems inside :lwicon:

Yeah, I did wonder about this, I mean I can see that say DFX+ 5 (or whatever) would be more appealing to some.
However, and this is pure supposition on my part, if the revamped LW9 allowed tighter integration with Vue5, you could use Vue for creating huge landscape sets, with all due respect, faster than you probably could in LW.

Now for creating environments, that would be a real benefit to small and large studios alike, sorta "instant background generation" almost.
Also, if these setups could then be used to generate HDRI "imageworld" files, it also opens up a whole possibility for more realistic enviroment rendering.

You could output the scene, use the HDRI map for occlusion / radiosity and get a great looking set into which to place your work.

Personally speaking, it could be very useful to me as I am looking at redoing some of building / landscape works.
I dunno, but I guess maybe it would be useful for the arch-vis folks as well.

Truth is of course, any bundled software is not going to appeal to all, I wsa made up to get DFX4+ with my last upgrade, but so far haven't been in a situation to take advantage of having it. Still, very nice addition to my toolkit when I do need it though, as I'm hoping Vue5 will be. :D

mlmiller1983
08-02-2005, 06:08 AM
It almost sounds if you judge the quality of something by how much it costs. If that is the case maybe it is time for you to leave and join the user base of Alias.

You can't judge a program by its price. If that was case then everybody should only buy Maya Unlimited and XSI Advanced then. Each with a $6000+ price tag.

starbase1
08-02-2005, 06:12 AM
Given the blurb on cameras, (e.g. orthographic, panoramic, you name it in there ), I think that making reusable environments will be trivial...

Which is good!

I actually just paind for a wrap around the environment ball image maps with loads of clouds and grass and stuff, its unbeleivably handy, particularly for quick and dirty...

Nick

mattclary
08-02-2005, 06:25 AM
Sure, if you don't mind missing out on a discount, it can be prudent to wait until users have hammered out the software for a bit before upgrading.


****, anyone who doesn't jump on a deal like the $395 w/ Vue 5 is crazy, even if they don't want to jump to a new version. Think about it, Newtek never charges for point releases, so they aren't saving any money at all by waiting for 9.5. That's ok, they will be soooo jealous when they see how cool we are with our copies of LW9 :boogiedow :boogiedow :boogiedow

colkai
08-02-2005, 06:55 AM
Think about it, Newtek never charges for point releases, so they aren't saving any money at all by waiting for 9.5.
Yup, and as a good friend has just said, can you imagine where we may be by the 4th quarter of next year?

JML
08-02-2005, 07:03 AM
****, anyone who doesn't jump on a deal like the $395 w/ Vue 5 is crazy, even if they don't want to jump to a new version. Think about it, Newtek never charges for point releases, so they aren't saving any money at all by waiting for 9.5. That's ok, they will be soooo jealous when they see how cool we are with our copies of LW9 :boogiedow :boogiedow :boogiedow

true. true.
I just bought the upgrade for 9 (from 7.x) with Vue5 yesterday, could not resist..

but I don't like LW being that cheap.
not because I want to spend more money but because I want Newtek to make money and to stay around.
I hope it's not a dieing sign..

hopefully, they will reach more people, and more people will be able to afford it and then newtek will make more money...

colkai
08-02-2005, 07:53 AM
but I don't like LW being that cheap.
not because I want to spend more money but because I want Newtek to make money and to stay around.
I hope it's not a dieing sign..

Nahh, don't believe it for one second - they've been "prophecying" the death of LW since LW4.0 when it first arrived on the PC. :p :lwicon: for ever!

MonroePoteet
08-02-2005, 09:24 AM
Dropping the introductory price builds a customer base. By making an entry-level purchase a "no brainer", you get people hooked, and get your product into more people's hands. They play with it, learn it, love it, commit to its workflow and paradigm, and buy the upgrades.

mTp

beverins
08-02-2005, 10:29 AM
If a lower price point gets this software into more people's hands, then I'm all for it. Certainly makes my job easier, to justify upgrading for the University here (not that the Edu price isn't already amazingly chopped; is the Edu price going to be lowered too, or will it maintain at the same level?)

Maybe the high price of a software like Maya gives it the "status" that people want (I mean, the software is nothing really that special, but it is treated and accorded the rank of "The Only 3D Software" by many people), but if a lower price point sneaks a user base underneath the mighty titan, which then is revealed as huge, the giant will be forced to re-evaluate its position... and users will take notice.

'Course, it would help if people actually admitted they used Lightwave. Though its getting much better in magazine and web articles, all too often I still see Maya mentioned as if the writer was getting paid by the instance of the word, yet when something is done in Lightwave there is either a passing mention or simply "3D Software was used". This, of course gets into the argument of "it shouldn't matter what tools you use; only the output should matter" though as mentioned above by Archiea, that kind of blinkered "brand-prejudism" is rampant.

So, if lowering the price does damage to the "it costs more, it must be better" status, it hopefully will enhance LW's market share through simple numbers.

Other things that I think need to be done to enhance this image is to make a PLE version (Like both Maya and XSI did) that works directly (and perhaps only) with a hot 3D GAME so as in order to make mods for it - I'd love to be able to easily and directly make a mod for Half Life 2 without having to jump through some fairly obtuse and convoluted hoops.... and to have a general purpose Discovery Edition that isn't masked as an installable upgrade. This I think will be a good step in the right direction, though.

beverins
08-02-2005, 10:32 AM
Also, with this price point drop, this software should be made available (or at least attempted - its up to the buyer of each individual store to actually stock it of course) in the mass market chain stores that sell computer software - CompUSA as one example.

hrgiger
08-02-2005, 10:38 AM
That's a good thought Beverins, I would love to see Lightwave in Best buy one day.

That way I could tell them I bought a copy of Lightwave from them but I didn't get my printed manual that was supposed to come with it.... :2guns:

archiea
08-02-2005, 12:14 PM
Ya know, I've never got this idea that if something is cheap it must be rubbish or somehow not taken seriously.
I'm sure Newtek are very keenly clear on what they are doing.
I mean, come on XSI at $495 - I don't hear anyone suggesting that Softimage are getting it wrong, instead, all you hear is of how Newtek had better wise up and how Softimage have got it right and are puuling more people into their package.
Yet, when Newtek bring their price down - it's a failure, go figure.


Actually, the XSI software is scaled from $400 to $7000. I'd hate to be "stuck" with the features that a $495 priced package would limit me to. hence the option to upgrade should you want new features. If Newtek can managed to squeeze $7000 features into a $800 3D package AND have it be stable, Then more power to them and us.

So using XSI $395 foundation price proves my point. Would you be content with just the features in the foundation version?

Not to come off in a derogatory fashion to you folks here, but I've been with LW since '91, as many here, and I feel that LW's "growth" can be affected at this price point. There may be features that NT just can't afford to include at that price point. This can limit one's toolset. What I don't get is that many here can't seem to see beyond this, that theyhave blinders on and are just NT/LW fans.





My car only cost 6,000 on the road, it has done 125,000 care free miles, if it had cost me 10,000 - it would still be the same vehicle.


Again, if you jsut want to get from point A to B, thats fine. Some people want power windows and entry, a more powerful engine, luxury features, navigation system, advanced suspension geometry for a smoother ride. This is why car companies scale their product line for $6000 entry vehicles to $40,000+ luxury vehicles. They will even rebrand their product line for higher priced items (toyota/lexus) to avoid association with their "low end" product. Newtek is just making a $6000 vehicle that is fine for some, but others will outgrow.

Now do you understand why while something that is cheap may not be rubbish, but you may just be getting what your pay for.




Lightwave is evolving, as are Newtek, we either want them to compete, or we want them to fail, I'll take the former please Bob.


Maya and XSI compete by offering a lower end of their product to get more seats out there, without compromising the advanced development that their premium customers demand. I feel that with this new price point, NT may be compromising this advanced development. By all means prove me wrong.. because I want to be wrong about this.



And why shouldn't it be? if they bumped the price up, are you saying you'd be first in line because "ahh - more expensive - MUST be better" ?


Colkai, your argument is silly here. I didn't say that they should bump up the price. My reaction was to the lowering of LW price to that of introductory 3D software. And in your example, the $7000 xsi version is better than the introductory version at $395.



You're making some mighty big assumptions there.
Look at what we know, Newtek have brought on board more programmers, from varying sources. Now then, there new people will require some form of recompense for their efforts I'd wager. :p So my guess is, Newtek will be investing money in these folks.


Who's making assumptions here?




Seriously, think about it for just one minute, they can sell 10 copies at $1500 or 30 at $795 - sometimes being cheaper sells.
I work for a charity, we were selling an item at 4.50 - it just wasn't moving, we reduced that to 3.99, suddenly, we are having trouble keeping up with demand. It's the same darn product, but now, instead of selling 1 a month, for 51p less, we are selling like 10+ a month. Do the math.
Newtek is a business, doesn't matter if you're perceived to be "big" because your products cost a fortune, a fortune you pass on to clients. If the stock ain't going out the door - ya still gonna be in the red.
As for passing on saving to clients - this is bad why?
Hey - I can do this job at a higher cost than the other guy, please pick me!
hehe...
Let's face it - the client is gonna want stupidly cheap regardless of if you paid $795 or $7,950 for your software. :p

I ask again: who is making assumptions here?

Great.. LW is now $395 say,and we can get many more people to buy copies. Many of them will be students and entry level people. So you are catering to a amateur/beginning crowd. Meanwhile the high end professionals can't wait anymore for SSS, advanced fur, advanced character animation tools, multipass/layered output, advanced rendering and shading because NT can't turn around such features at that price point, so they have moved on. Actually, this isn't an assumption (except for the price), its fact up to now.

If NT can deliver the caliber of product that maya and XSI do in their premium priced products, then great. I sure hope they can. I want them to.

archiea
08-02-2005, 12:21 PM
Archie, in the day of $495 XSI, I don't think Newtek can afford not to drop their price a little.


Again, the $495 version of XSI that you are talking about is the foundation version. There is a $7000 version that includes features that some may want. If you are fine with the features of the XSI version, great! Some may not be.




3D used to be a niche market, nowadays every kid out there playing Quake or making game mods is a potential customer. And when those kids grow up and get a job or form their own company, guess what software is going to be near and dear to their heart?


The Amiga was near and dear to my heart. I work in Linux and mac now because my ehart doesn't pay the rent, my brain usually does. Again, you have a romatic view of things. This fan boy stuff is fun, but its just not realistic.

This is what $7000 buys you...

http://www.softimage.com/Products/Xsi/v5/pricing/default.asp?pkg=adv

If newtek can do this for $800, great.



I want Newtek to make money. If they don't, they won't be around long. As long as they can make money, I say the lower the price, the better.

..at the expense of features? And by the same context, growth

Imatk
08-02-2005, 12:26 PM
I agree with the original poster.

When I heard/saw the price decrease I was very dissapointed.

I feel like Newtek has basically thrown in the towel as far as competing with apps like Maya and Max.

Working in this field... I would MUCH rather they go head to head... **** increase the price if need be to hire on some uber programmers to really crank LW up a few notches and give Alias and the rest a run for their money.

I DEFINATELY don't want to see LW in Best Buy!!! I'm sorry, this may sound elitest... but usually when things are marketed to the every day joe things start to degrade from a professional point of view.

And perception alone in the FX industry is worth its weight in gold. What a producer or director PERCIEVE as being good... is good as far as they're concerned. If LW is available in Best Buy or drops its price (as they've done) most will probably percieve this as a sign of lowered value regardless of the truth perception goes A LOOOOONG way in Hollywood.

So again I'd say... RAISE the price if you need to, to get LW in shape to battle Alias and the like.

Lightwolf
08-02-2005, 12:34 PM
As a side note related to this:
Maxon have announced a Production Bundle for Studios, no price mentioned, but that includes all of their tools, PRMan support, 32bit support in Bodypaint, Linux versions as well as premium support.

It seems that they're aiming high to take on the big guys and I suppose they'll hit a few as well ;)

Cheers,
Mike

Lightwolf
08-02-2005, 12:38 PM
I DEFINATELY don't want to see LW in Best Buy!!! I'm sorry, this may sound elitest... but usually when things are marketed to the every day joe things start to degrade from a professional point of view.
You mean in the shelf right next to Caligari TS 3.2 and XXX HomeDesigner3D? Nor do I...
I does sound elitist... of course it is. LW users have always been divided in the ones that make money using the app and the hobbyists. Both are an elite group in their ways (so to speak), but they both need to be catered for.

Cheers,
Mike - who wonders what SDK improvements will come with 9...

hrgiger
08-02-2005, 12:40 PM
So using XSI $395 foundation price proves my point. Would you be content with just the features in the foundation version?

Considering that most people can't afford the elitest price that XSI charges for their high end (or should I say high priced) package, I would say yes, most people are probably content with the foundation version. Because they don't have a choice.


Not to come off in a derogatory fashion to you folks here, but I've been with LW since '91, as many here, and I feel that LW's "growth" can be affected at this price point. There may be features that NT just can't afford to include at that price point. This can limit one's toolset. What I don't get is that many here can't seem to see beyond this, that theyhave blinders on and are just NT/LW fans.

I'm not sure how you get the impression that Newtek can't afford certain features....Again, you assume that just because something costs less, it makes less money for the seller. Ask Wal-Mart what they think of your idea. They have put more people out of business with just this idea. They sell in such bulk that they can afford to sell for less and nobody can compete with them. You should stop asking if Newtek can afford to put in certain features and start asking if the other apps can afford to lose some of their user base when they start realizing there is another package out there they can buy with comparable features, unlimited render nodes and no licensing fees other then the cost of an upgrade all for just $800.




Again, if you jsut want to get from point A to B, thats fine. Some people want power windows and entry, a more powerful engine, luxury features, navigation system, advanced suspension geometry for a smoother ride. This is why car companies scale their product line for $6000 entry vehicles to $40,000+ luxury vehicles. They will even rebrand their product line for higher priced items (toyota/lexus) to avoid association with their "low end" product. Newtek is just making a $6000 vehicle that is fine for some, but others will outgrow.

Now do you understand why while something that is cheap may not be rubbish, but you may just be getting what your pay for.

None of this makes any sense. Quit with the car analogies already.


Maya and XSI compete by offering a lower end of their product to get more seats out there, without compromising the advanced development that their premium customers demand. I feel that with this new price point, NT may be compromising this advanced development. By all means prove me wrong.. because I want to be wrong about this.

You haven't shown that Newtek will be making any less money at their current price so it's a moot point to argue that they have any less resources for development of new innovative features.


Great.. LW is now $395 say,and we can get many more people to buy copies. Many of them will be students and entry level people. So you are catering to a amateur/beginning crowd.

First of all, this is an elitest statement. Lightwave's credo has ALWAYS been professional level tools that even an artist can afford, this price change only reinforces this idea. This "amateur/beginning crowd" as you call them are all potential professionals. Secondly, Lightwave has proven itself time and time again as a production level software package. I shouldn't have to remind you of all the places it has been and is currently being used in film, print, and other media.


Meanwhile the high end professionals can't wait anymore for SSS, advanced fur, advanced character animation tools, multipass/layered output, advanced rendering and shading because NT can't turn around such features at that price point, so they have moved on. Actually, this isn't an assumption (except for the price), its fact up to now.

And there are many high end professionals who haven't moved on and there will be more high end professionals tomorrow. In 3D software, there are often losers but there are no clear winners. Either you make it or you don't. Lightwave has always had a niche in the market as a professional level software package at an affordable price. I think they're doing just fine...

archiea
08-02-2005, 12:44 PM
Archiea, look at it this way.

Lightwave 8

New Customers who can afford Lightwave 8 at $1500 - 2500 X $1500
People upgrading their 7 to 8 at $495 - 5000 X $495

Total money brought in: - $6,225,000


Lightwave 9

New Customers who can afford $800 - 4500 X $800
People upgrading their 8 to 9 at $395 - 6000 X $395
People coming back from other apps (who
left Lightwave because of slow render, no edges,
no ngons, no modeler in layout, etc.....) - 500 X $800

Total money brought in: - $6,370,000


Obviously, I'm pulling these numbers out of thin air and have no idea what kind of numbers Newtek makes in sales but there are some things I believe to be true about this speculation:


Well, yes it is speculation. Here's mine: The "new customers" that can afford thenew price point will be students/amateurs. The "old customers" that want integrated fur, better rendering/shaders, bettery dynamics, robust code, faster feedback, advanced output and function like crowd contril, 3D tracking, etc will move on as they can't wait anymore. Pretty soon the NT community will be made up of more inexperienced $800 pricepoint crowd, manyof them being fan boys.

Like I said earlier, I don't want to sound deragatory to the folks here, but I think NT is jsut going to be catering to a more entry level crowd. This is no great sin, in fact its great for business. AS LONG AS IT DOESN'T COMPROMISE THE HIGH END CROWD. If Newtek can pull this off, awesome, I say. They have done it in the past, in fact their product was based on such feats.




1. I believe more people will upgrade from their Lightwave 8 to 9 then did upgrade their Lightwave 7 to Ligthwave 8.


I'd rather that its because NT put an SSS and occlusion shader in LW along with a crowd control software, advanced integrated fur, advanced rendering output, extensive beta testing, an interface that has evolved liek other software and hasn;t regressed to the LW 5.0 days and so on. Not just because its cheaper. This is how I mean that it cheapens its value.





2. I believe there are a lot of users that left Lightwave before and during the Lightwave 8.X cycle because of key missing features, not to mention lack of a well unified app and/or strong core. With the changes we're looking forward to in 8.5 and 9, I think we'll see at least a few of them come back.


Bravo. This does appear to be great news from Newtek;s part, and a bit og surprise. They have never seemed more focused on their development, nor have they ever explicitly stated it so. I want their user base to expand because of the usability of their software, not its price point.




3. I believe there are a lot of people that normally end up going with an app like Animation Master or Truespace simply because of price. If they see they can get a proven, production quality tool like Lightwave, I think we'll see many more new sales then we did in 8.


yeah, but it will probably be people who are interested int he price point. Not people who wanted advaced features like crowd control, advanced shaders, etc.. because, well, LW doesn't have any...

"But hey, look its cheap.. and Kiki is back.. and their kewl.. and .. they have kewl shirts at the booth..."

See what I mean.. fan boys...



If you can accept that, then I think Lightwave 9 will pull in as much if not more more then the 8.x cycle did.

yeah,,,more fan boys...

Imatk
08-02-2005, 12:51 PM
Agreed.... agreed.... agreed..

archiea
08-02-2005, 12:52 PM
I understand the concerns over a viable income stream, to support the product we know and mostly love. :hey:

But speaking purely personally, I think it was overpriced before this.
Nick

I remember that LW 6 brought a new price peak to LW.. I think it was $2500... but they were also first on the block with HDR.




I think the obvious model to go for is Photoshop. With a very well thought out split between the cheap amateur version and the full featured one, they have done a very impressive job in both markets, and that's not easy. Also there's the obvious upgrade path there.



This is my point.. How many photoshop users would be happy with the feature sets limited to Photo elements? This is how I feel with LW sometimes.. And these price cut announcements make me feel like this is going to get worse...

archiea
08-02-2005, 12:55 PM
Dropping the introductory price builds a customer base. By making an entry-level purchase a "no brainer", you get people hooked, and get your product into more people's hands. They play with it, learn it, love it, commit to its workflow and paradigm, and buy the upgrades.

mTp

..but what happens to the development of advanced features? they get delayed for 3 years while you lose your long term customers...

mattclary
08-02-2005, 01:02 PM
Archie, I find your repeated references to "fanboys" offensive. You've been with LightWave since '91 you say? Why didn't you bail when Newtek lowered their price from $2499? You could be considered a "fanboy" yourself for sticking with them this long when they obviously have no idea what they are doing.

Has it ever occured to you that after several price drops in the recent years that maybe, just MAYBE that Newtek (who has been in this business a very long time as evidenced by your own testimony) actually knows how to run a successful business? Maybe they have seen first hand what cutting prices can do for the bottom line? Maybe, just MAYBE they actually know more about selling software than... *gasp*... you do? ;)

hrgiger
08-02-2005, 01:05 PM
yeah,,,more fan boys...

Jesus, this is the only product I've ever known where the customers argue when the price goes down. Perhaps it's just because you have a penis, but I think you should lose the c0ck strutting attitude. And by c0ck, I mean male chicken of course. Why do you feel that Lightwave has to be better then every other app out there? Lightwave is and is still going through a major overhaul and rendering will be faster and higher quality, OpenGL will now be supported, edges and ngon support, major core changes, the SDK is being opened to third party renders.....so on and so on. Then what happens? The price drops and people complain.... :rolleyes:
Yes, there are people out there who won't buy something if they think it's not priced high enough. These are what you call elitest morons. And they should be scraped from the gene pool. Painfully scraped. To discourage more moronic behaviour.
And yes, there are companies that charge as much money as possible because they know people will pay their prices. Lexus, Nike, Bloomingdales.... Or perhaps someone can explain to me why I should pay $100 for a pair of shoes that Nike paid some third world starving kid 25 cents an hour to make? You could never explain that one to me. Yet there's still people who pay their elitest pricing just so they can have that little symbol on their clothes. They're all jagoffs as far as I'm concerned. And personally, I would never do business with them no matter how rich and worthless I was.
And it's good to see Newtek stick it those companies by severely underselling them in price. :lwicon:

archiea
08-02-2005, 01:11 PM
If a lower price point gets this software into more people's hands, then I'm all for it. Certainly makes my job easier, to justify upgrading for the University here


Again.. at the expense of making available higher end features tha cost more dollars to develop, you have more "kids" learning Lightwave.

You can have more kids learnig lightwave with a better educational package WITHOUT compromising advanced users.




Maybe the high price of a software like Maya gives it the "status" that people want (I mean, the software is nothing really that special, but it is treated and accorded the rank of "The Only 3D Software" by many people), but if a lower price point sneaks a user base underneath the mighty titan, which then is revealed as huge, the giant will be forced to re-evaluate its position... and users will take notice.
[QUOTE]

I can get Maya and intro training materials for $25. I can't get that from newtek. They software functions as a demo without the license, yet thats not available either. You don't see LW on machines in the apple store.

And "Maya is nothing special"? I'm not even a fan of Maya, but you are so wrong. It does take a greater effort to take advantage of maya.


[QUOTE=beverins]
'Course, it would help if people actually admitted they used Lightwave. Though its getting much better in magazine and web articles, all too often I still see Maya mentioned as if the writer was getting paid by the instance of the word, yet when something is done in Lightwave there is either a passing mention or simply "3D Software was used". This, of course gets into the argument of "it shouldn't matter what tools you use; only the output should matter" though as mentioned above by Archiea, that kind of blinkered "brand-prejudism" is rampant.

[QUOTE]

fact of life. get over it. I did. And Newtek can do wonders to get Lighwave out ot the masses without compromising its premium users and functionality by lowering their value.


[QUOTE=beverins]
So, if lowering the price does damage to the "it costs more, it must be better" status, it hopefully will enhance LW's market share through simple numbers.
[QUOTE]

No, cost more does give you more advanced features. Newtek can enhance its market share by improving its exposure to the market. Like how about a downloadable demo.

HOW ABOUT A DOWNLOADABLE DEMO?

Is it so hard. This way ANYBODY with a modem can try LW out. It doesn;t cost NT a penny save for bandwidth.

I still say Maya does it right by packaging a $25 dem and tutorial package.. no download fiddling through tutorials.. just one clean package., Newtek seems ghetto by comparison...


[QUOTE=beverins]
Other things that I think need to be done to enhance this image is to make a PLE version (Like both Maya and XSI did) that works directly (and perhaps only) with a hot 3D GAME so as in order to make mods for it - I'd love to be able to easily and directly make a mod for Half Life 2 without having to jump through some fairly obtuse and convoluted hoops.... and to have a general purpose Discovery Edition that isn't masked as an installable upgrade. This I think will be a good step in the right direction, though.

For once, someone is talking sense here!!!

JML
08-02-2005, 01:15 PM
I agree with the original poster.

When I heard/saw the price decrease I was very dissapointed.

I feel like Newtek has basically thrown in the towel as far as competing with apps like Maya and Max.

Working in this field... I would MUCH rather they go head to head... **** increase the price if need be to hire on some uber programmers to really crank LW up a few notches and give Alias and the rest a run for their money.

I DEFINATELY don't want to see LW in Best Buy!!! I'm sorry, this may sound elitest... but usually when things are marketed to the every day joe things start to degrade from a professional point of view.

So again I'd say... RAISE the price if you need to, to get LW in shape to battle Alias and the like.

YES YES YES and YES , you read my mind .

at least, bring the price back to 2595$
but keep upgrade at 400$ from LW8 and 500 from before LW8.


soon truespace is going to be more expensive than LW ! :mad:

colkai
08-02-2005, 01:15 PM
Great.. LW is now $395 say,and we can get many more people to buy copies. Many of them will be students and entry level people. So you are catering to a amateur/beginning crowd. Meanwhile the high end professionals can't wait anymore for SSS, advanced fur, advanced character animation tools, multipass/layered output, advanced rendering and shading because NT can't turn around such features at that price point, so they have moved on.
Yes, but maybe you forget the whole ethos behind Newtek?
They WANT to get technology into the hands of little ole amateurs like me, always have done. What that does not negate is the fact that the same package can produce work for film and TV.

As to my assumption on price point, read it again, it's based on hard experienced facts. I've seen the difference a change in price point can make when lowered.
If I had left things as they were, producing a more glossy product for more money, chances are, we'd have not sold a single one. As it is, a cut in price means instead of making £4.25 on an item a month, we make £39.00

Now granted, if the LW price cut has absolutely no effect on the number of people buying the package, then it has served no point. However, folks are already shelling out $800 on second-hand copies of LW, so it isn't such a leap to me that more people would be attracted to LW at that price.

At the end of the day, I don't think for a minute Newtek are gonna cut back on development. As to if the price cut is a success, only Newtek can answer that one in the future.

archiea
08-02-2005, 01:17 PM
I agree with the original poster.

When I heard/saw the price decrease I was very dissapointed.

I feel like Newtek has basically thrown in the towel as far as competing with apps like Maya and Max.

Working in this field... I would MUCH rather they go head to head... **** increase the price if need be to hire on some uber programmers to really crank LW up a few notches and give Alias and the rest a run for their money.



which was what NT used to do back in the "brad" days...



I DEFINATELY don't want to see LW in Best Buy!!! I'm sorry, this may sound elitest... but usually when things are marketed to the every day joe things start to degrade from a professional point of view.


Thank you thank you thank you. I don't understand why the community here take such offense to associating a "value" to their skill set.



And perception alone in the FX industry is worth its weight in gold. What a producer or director PERCIEVE as being good... is good as far as they're concerned. If LW is available in Best Buy or drops its price (as they've done) most will probably percieve this as a sign of lowered value regardless of the truth perception goes A LOOOOONG way in Hollywood.

So again I'd say... RAISE the price if you need to, to get LW in shape to battle Alias and the like.

I think thats the problem.. many here are garage animators and FX artist.. they are far removed from "hollywood" and are content at under-pricing their work. I mean when someone thinks that $1500 is too much money for the capability that the software gives you, you clearly have an income problem.

colkai
08-02-2005, 01:19 PM
I agree with the original poster.
....
I DEFINATELY don't want to see LW in Best Buy!!! I'm sorry, this may sound elitest... but usually when things are marketed to the every day joe things start to degrade from a professional point of view.

As one of those everyday Joes, I totally resent such an attitude.
If you come over all elistist like that, with a superior "professional" stance, don't be surprised if someone else looks down at you because you don't measure up to their percieved "professionalism".

Frankly, if that's what it takes to be a professional, long may Newtek cater to us poor dumb schmucks!

beverins
08-02-2005, 01:24 PM
Well, to be honest, my agreeing with them to lower the price point is attendant on the premise that it offers everything that LW does now, and indeed that Maya does now. I will not accept a cut down product. It has be every bit as good as it is now, and even better for LW v9 - a REAL COMPETITOR for Maya in not just price but also in featureset. Yes, I am having my cake and eating it too - and I hope that Newtek are as well.

Essentially, at pricing LW v.9 at $800, I fully expect the equivalent of Maya 6.5 Unlimited. And for V10 at $800, I fully expect the equivalent from Newtek for Maya 8.5 Extreeem (or whatever stupid naming convention they think up next) for that price point.

I do not want Home Designer v10. Nosiree.

My imagination that I could see a LW box sitting there in CompUSA or BestBuy is based upon an idea that I would go in there, see the box, and know full well that for $800 there sits an entire production studio in a box, easily the equivalent of any 3D software that sells for any price - no extra fees, no unlocks, no "buy the plugins for $1200 that *really* unlock LW to the next level" nonsense. All there for $800. If Newtek are doing this, then BRAVO. If they are attempting to go down the route of other software that have the Basic Edition and then the Professional Edition, then Bugger that - that's insanely stupid.

If they want a Cheap 'N Cheerful Inspire-style software, then they should make one that actually SEAMLESSLY (and I mean SEAMLESSLY. Direct Import and Export. No muss no fuss, no stupid Command-line interpreters and fudges and hacks) integrates with the modern 3D GAMES THAT ARE ON THE MARKET TODAY, sell it as the ultimate Game Modder's Tool. Sell THAT for about $100, and leave the full LW app at its current price point. It would have to be the full modeler, and enough mapping options for gamers (normal mapping especially) - full bones and such, but compositing and the full power of the raytrace renderer aren't needed as such (I know, games like Half Life 2 have a full HDR realtime renderer, and it would be nice to make your texture maps in all their glory with your game modder's tool.. but you have to lose something for $100, I take it)

Just some ideas, rants and so on. I'm sure their decision to drop it down to $800 was arrived at by careful deliberation, with probably some political motivation and ***-kissing thrown in for good measure which usually does nothing good for the product. I hope the logical arguments won out over the "I agree with [insert name here] assertion to lower it to $800 because s/he can get me promoted" stuff.

Essentially:
a) If Newtek can essentially keep one of the most powerful 3D software products updated with the latest tech on a constant basis, always nipping at Alias's heels on all fronts including Maya's Holy Grail - Character Animation, and in some cases outpacing them entirely, for $800... then Huzzah!!

b)If Newtek cannot keep running with the pack for $800, and instead decide the pace of more consumer oriented stuff is more their speed, ignoring the needs of high-end users, and giving up the race to Maya, Softimage and even Cinema 4D... then that's indeed a sad loss.

I hope and trust fervently that its the former.

P.s. - a third option just hit me. They might be lowering the price point in relation to plugins. i.e. - they make big news of the renderer, right? Well, its still not as fast as Fprime, nor as configurable as, say, Mental Ray. Might this be a strategy that says "for $800 you get our renderer, but for the $1500 package you get the new Infinite Render System" which perhaps uses the E-On renderer or something. I dunno. Wild speculation.

Feel free to delete if you feel this is too inflammatory for these boards...

colkai
08-02-2005, 01:24 PM
I think thats the problem.. many here are garage animators and FX artist.. they are far removed from "hollywood" and are content at under-pricing their work. I mean when someone thinks that $1500 is too much money for the capability that the software gives you, you clearly have an income problem.

whoa - boy you really have got the "elitist" bug ain't ya?

One thing as well, I notice in all your "high end" statements, it always falls to SSS, fur and occlusion. It couldn't be, by any chance, that those are the things you specifically want could it?
Trouble is, you ain't "high-end" enough fo those features, becaue a lot of the features added come from requests made by the film and TV studios I'm sure.

One more point, the lack of these high-end features has so far not stopped Newtek continuing to thrive when other companies are getting bought out and has not stopped them winning countless awards for FX work, regardless of price!

archiea
08-02-2005, 01:29 PM
As a side note related to this:
Maxon have announced a Production Bundle for Studios, no price mentioned, but that includes all of their tools, PRMan support, 32bit support in Bodypaint, Linux versions as well as premium support.

It seems that they're aiming high to take on the big guys and I suppose they'll hit a few as well ;)

Cheers,
Mike

I had always thought that this should be NT's aim. Instead they are content with the fan base they have here. And many users desiring a more solid and advanced featured program are moving on. People will pay more for a better product. I felt that way when I was using Lightwave for "the Life Aquatic". I was doing simple particle dynamics and it was crashing alot. I posted here somewhere... I don't want to be anchored by the indie contractors here who are perfectly content with indutrial videos or the like. No offense, but back in 2000, LW seemed perched to push forward to an advanced feature set and its has since stalled. 8 was nice with the dynamics, but 2 years too late. I'd say offer a pro line, but I don't think NT's head is in it. They are regressing to their toaster days with Kiki and dick van dyke.. I went to the Siggraph party last year and it felt like an old amiga get together... it was just NT fans. No realy studio or holywood presence... and newtek seems content with that. WTF? I'd hate to say it but the Modo party was more the crowd that NT used to be... a mix of indies and hollywood that thought outside the box.

colkai
08-02-2005, 01:31 PM
Well, to be honest, my agreeing with them to lower the price point is attendant on the premise that it offers everything that LW does now, and indeed that Maya does now. I will not accept a cut down product.

Absolutely, and let's be clear here, I'm sure no-one wants a cut down version at this price. Then again, I am pretty darn sure that Newtek would never consider doing that. They have shown that if they want a real low priced level entry program, they would look at producing that.

Newtek always have been about putting the power in the hands of everyone, without such an ethos, the Babylon5 show would never have been able to produce those effects at that price point. These days we take all this for granted, but back then, it was Lightwave based work that opened peoples eyes to how you could work on a budget.

If I can buy a product for $795 that allows me to generate income, the nI'd be insane not to do that. Yes, I could buy the top shelf Maya or XSI, but I'd have to get a lot of paying gigs to even start to break even.

..And don't give me the high-end == high quality argument, I've seen plenty of work done on TV using Maya that sucked the sucky suck. :p

Imatk
08-02-2005, 01:34 PM
As one of those everyday Joes, I totally resent such an attitude.
If you come over all elistist like that, with a superior "professional" stance, don't be surprised if someone else looks down at you because you don't measure up to their percieved "professionalism".

Frankly, if that's what it takes to be a professional, long may Newtek cater to us poor dumb schmucks!

Ok... well I didn't mean to "come over all elitist like that."

And if you look down on me for wanting to keep my job security so that I can pay my bills and take care of my family then I really could care less what you think. The truth is I've already started learning Maya and will continue to do so because I was flat out told by several industry people that if I wanted a job in the future it would probably be a good idea.

It seems you are taking this post and others very personally. What I want is for Newtek to better compete with companies like Alias.

I'm sorry if I don't care if this agrees with your opinion. When it's your job on the line and you lose work because a certain company or producer / director decides to go with Maya for various reasons mentioned in previous posts you would probably have a different viewpoint as well.

And I don't believe I ever referred to anyone in a deragotory manner. I respect everyone and their opinions. I don't think I'm "superior" to anyone for any reason. I'm quite sure there are many "amatuers" and "hobbyists" that could produce work that rivals any professional.

But the fact is many of us DO do this for a living and we're concerned about LW's future for other reasons than yourself... obviously.

Lightwolf
08-02-2005, 01:36 PM
As one of those everyday Joes, I totally resent such an attitude.
If you come over all elistist like that, with a superior "professional" stance, don't be surprised if someone else looks down at you because you don't measure up to their percieved "professionalism".

I don't think that is what he meant at all... well, at least I didn't. I just think the needs can be very different. That's why the announcement that blows me away the most is actually Maxons in regard to offering the big boys support...
Sometimes it isn't the silver bullet on the feature list alone, but how well the commercial users (I hope that is a bit less elitist), i.e. the ones forced to make money using the tool in the trenches, get supported.
For example, it might make perfect sense for a studio to shell out a couple 100$ per seat per year to get priority support if it enables them to get their job done quicker, better with less hassle.
Not to forget: The cost of software isn't the decisive factor if you're in a commercial situation. An employee costs you x thousand $ per year, so does a decent workstation plus rent, workspace etc... If you have to set back 500$ or so per seat per year to cover the upgrades, this isn't that much in relation.

Sorry for talking so much about $$$ ... and yes, the list looks very sweet! The rendering speed ups seem to be something I've wanted for ages...

Cheers,
Mike

sudac20
08-02-2005, 01:38 PM
I think some of you are missing the point. LW dropping its price is great for people just getting started in the industry. The problem with this is the stigma, which will undoubtedly be associated with LW of a cheap beginners tool.

If you’re a professional, you need to impress clients, and unfortunately more and more of my clientele are not taking LW seriously. That means less money and less work for me. I would gladly pay 3 or 4 grand for LW 9 if it meant I would be able to get more money from clients. I for one am jumping ship. I cannot let my lively go down the drain because of blind loyalty. I heave foreseen this coming for a while and I regret not making the move sooner.

I will hold on to a few LW seats and hope for the best, but at the same time, unfortunately, I have to learn a new application, and that sucks. Do I go Maya or XSI :thumbsdow ???

Lightwolf
08-02-2005, 01:40 PM
Oh, btw... what happened of Inspire?

Cheers,
Mike - puzzled

Chuck
08-02-2005, 01:42 PM
Who's making assumptions here?

You, for one, but you have lots of company in that enterprise. ;)

I'd recommend this document to anyone who hasn't read it:

http://www.newtek.com/lightwave/lwfuturedev.php

I'd recommend this paragraph as interesting to consider before making pronouncements about our new pricing announcements:


NewTek's approach to the model is to implement innovative structures that allow both the rapid advancement of a given product, but also easy application of IP across multiple products. With regard to the first goal, rapid advancement means not simply the addition of new features, but also the ability to quickly revise or even replace structures and elements of the IP in order to take advantage of the latest software design technologies and of innovations from the development teams. The second goal is to apply intelligent, efficient design so that the code base can easily be used to maximum advantage to create new products derived from the original base product within a line, or IP can be applied across multiple product lines.

Of course even after reading these, it still might be a better use of one's energies to see what comes along rather than making any sorts of assumptions and engaging in long-handled speculative debates. But not so much fun I suppose. :boogiedow

hrgiger
08-02-2005, 01:46 PM
But the fact is many of us DO do this for a living and we're concerned about LW's future for other reasons than yourself... obviously.

Yet, other then a price drop, I don't see Newtek making any backwards strides in innovation at this point. What future are you concerned about? It shouldn't be for Lightwave, not that I can see...

Let's see, I've heard people switch to apps for the following reasons.....

No third party renders....
No edges or ngons....
An un-unified app.....
Poor OpenGL....
Slow renderer....
Poor SDK access for programmers...
No modeler functions in Layout....
No orthographic rendering...
etc....

It seems that all of these and more issues have been addressed with Lightwave 8.5 and 9 and they're still adding developers. This may not rival some of the big packages (at this point) but it certainly puts them pretty close. How long do you think studios will keep using $6,000 software when they can complete the job with $800 software? Yes, everyone says you won't get a job unless you know Maya but first of all, things change...and secondly, everyone also knows that if you're talented enough, it doesn't matter what software you use. I can cite you a few big examples of people who work in Hollywood off of their work done in Animation Master which incidentally is a $300 program. What's all the fuss about?

Earl
08-02-2005, 01:46 PM
I think thats the problem.. many here are garage animators and FX artist.. they are far removed from "hollywood" and are content at under-pricing their work. I mean when someone thinks that $1500 is too much money for the capability that the software gives you, you clearly have an income problem.

Wow. :rolleyes:

I don't think anyone considereds Photoshop to be "unprofessional" just because kids use it. In fact, I have to say that if kids are using LightWave, then NewTek is doing a great job! Those kids are going to be using it in Hollywood faster than you realise that you're out of a job (assuming you actually make a living off of CG). :p

I got over my upset feeling of the price drop pretty quick. It was just a gut reaction, but honestly I think NewTek has made the right move. They know what they're doing, and if you've read any of their info they've posted about their development strategies then you'd know that they're not giving up the highend market - they're stepping up and getting aggressive. And you know what? I feel pretty good about it!

beverins
08-02-2005, 01:48 PM
Perhaps I'm being naive here (probably), but impress the client with the work and not with the shiny tool. *shrug*. If the clients think so much of the shiny tool, then say you use everything, but use LW. Are they going to ask to see your Maya registration? Have a few books for Maya lying about. I guess your clients DO know the difference... in my world, they don't - they see me mucking about in 3D and are impressed all the same by the output - they don't know LW vs. Maya vs. Photoshop. Honestly.

I guess I just have dumb clients. Here's to me getting some clients that actually DO know the difference! .... heh

hrgiger
08-02-2005, 01:49 PM
Wow. :rolleyes:

I don't think anyone considereds Photoshop to be "unprofessional" just because kids use it.

Uh yeah, and don't forget that you can also buy it at Best Buy. Does that make it any less professional. Duh, no.

And I second the Wow and the rolleyes.

hrgiger
08-02-2005, 01:51 PM
Of course even after reading these, it still might be a better use of one's energies to see what comes along rather than making any sorts of assumptions and engaging in long-handled speculative debates. But not so much fun I suppose. :boogiedow


I think I heard some fingers snapping in the "Z" formation somehwere from the general vicinity of Texas. Was that you Chuck?

Earl
08-02-2005, 01:51 PM
they don't know LW vs. Maya vs. Photoshop. Honestly.


Don't forget Notepad. It's a big contender these days.

hrgiger
08-02-2005, 01:52 PM
Earl, you should not have gone there. Please accept this long distance b#tch slap.

starbase1
08-02-2005, 01:56 PM
OK, speaking as a keen amateur who has sold a few bits and pieces...

No one has ever expressed the slightest interest in the software I use to get the results. They look at the results.

Unless you are having to merge into someone elses workflow, I don't see why they should care either. If they need impressing that you are serious just say its the same software used for Bond Films, Star Trek, etc etc.

It takes a HUGE pull to get someone onto a new software platform. The cost is a realtively minor consideration, its the years of experience in getting what I want from the package that counts. If the software fairy waved her wand and offered me a free copy of the most expensive software that would run on my PC, I would not want to start again with a new package! And the same is true going the other way.

Therefore the ONLY way you are likely to grow market share significantly is to go for people new to 3d graphics. And that means a big presence in the magazines. And a tempting entry price point.

Hey guys, its talent not included! The best people round here could do work with V5.6 that I cerainly can't match with the latest version!

And if you want to boost the future of the product, don't just whinge, evangelise! Send your pics to the computer graphics mags, mention it on your web site!

Nick

colkai
08-02-2005, 01:57 PM
Earl, you should not have gone there. Please accept this long distance b#tch slap.
Hey - you leave Notepad alone - it's a classic. :p :tongue:

starbase1
08-02-2005, 01:59 PM
Oh, and if you REALLY think its too cheap, you can always buy 5 copies!

I'm sure Newtek will be only too happy to sell them, and you can show off your overdraft, to demonstrate how serious you are!

archiea
08-02-2005, 02:01 PM
Considering that most people can't afford the elitest price that XSI charges for their high end (or should I say high priced) package, I would say yes, most people are probably content with the foundation version. Because they don't have a choice.


Fix. The. Income. Problem. Period.

I seem to recall myself growing along with the LW development.. as they offered more, you can offer more. You can see small indie artist become the Computer Cafe or suppliment houses like Digital Domain. So you earned more, andcan afford better gear. I like having the option of growth. I;m going to be needing some crowd stuff... it seems like Lightwave has not been able to sustain development for that. I would have paid $2500 for a LW seat,, or $500 for a point release, if I was ensured advanced features like I've mentioned throughout this post. It would have ensured my competativeness in the market place. Instead I end up paying more for more programs to overlap features, training etc.. If I'm going through all of that effort, I might was well shop for a better future in a product.

Others have called this elitist.. Its called growth. I'd rather NT work on their exposure of Lightwave through the education channels rather than undermine its future competativeness in the studio environment..



I'm not sure how you get the impression that Newtek can't afford certain features....Again, you assume that just because something costs less, it makes less money for the seller. Ask Wal-Mart what they think of your idea. They have put more people out of business with just this idea. They sell in such bulk that they can afford to sell for less and nobody can compete with them. You should stop asking if Newtek can afford to put in certain features and start asking if the other apps can afford to lose some of their user base when they start realizing there is another package out there they can buy with comparable features, unlimited render nodes and no licensing fees other then the cost of an upgrade all for just $800.


Again, this ghetto reference to things like best buy and walmart. I mean would anybody here prefer a world with just walmart cheap merchandise? Christ is the average LW user at the poverty level? WTF?

NT is losing their base because LW users have grown, not because of price point. I know alot of former LW users that are in houdini, XSI and maya because they have 'outgrown" LW and work in studios, and enjoy a higher standard of living working in more specialized work. Alot of which can't be done with Lightwave because its development has been stagnant. They all still love lightwave, but they just don't earn enough using it, and they are ready for more advanced work.





None of this makes any sense. Quit with the car analogies already.



You know, I really question who am I dealing with here.. I mean if someone is going to tell me that a $6000 car is an end allof cars just because it gets you from point A to B, they really don't have a sense of a varying market place. And if you hrgiger can't see the analogy there then I;m really worried...

I mean this community is really degenerating to a group of Newtek sycophants that regard any sort of reference to high end as elitist...




You haven't shown that Newtek will be making any less money at their current price so it's a moot point to argue that they have any less resources for development of new innovative features.


I don't have to. where is an integrated SSS shader, or occlusion shader... advanced render features like layered output, integrated fur and crowd control. advanced 3D tracking even. Why aren't these featres that are 3 years old in other apps not even available in LW?

Just look at this community here, how its whithered down. How few studio professionals post here. How its becoming a group of fan boys... Christ, the siggy party last year... OMG...



First of all, this is an elitest statement. Lightwave's credo has ALWAYS been professional level tools that even an artist can afford, this price change only reinforces this idea.


If you can't afford $1500, you have an income problem. If NT's goal is the lowest common denomiator then so be it. As I;ve said before.. I can't afford to be a LW artist because the pay scale is way too low... and its going to get lower when NT lowers the price.. and this appears to escape everyone...



This "amateur/beginning crowd" as you call them are all potential professionals.


so is the kid learning Maya with the $25 PLE edition,or for that matter the maya crack. Its just not at the expense of the other maya uers who want the features of maya unlimited...



Secondly, Lightwave has proven itself time and time again as a production level software package. I shouldn't have to remind you of all the places it has been and is currently being used in film, print, and other media.


So is After effects.. I'd be earning half as much and working twice as hard as an After effects artist compared to shat I do now... Again. Value.




And there are many high end professionals who haven't moved on and there will be more high end professionals tomorrow. In 3D software, there are often losers but there are no clear winners. Either you make it or you don't. Lightwave has always had a niche in the market as a professional level software package at an affordable price. I think they're doing just fine...

So is Hash...
http://www.hash.com/

Lamont
08-02-2005, 02:01 PM
Pretty soon the NT community will be made up of more inexperienced $800 pricepoint crowd, manyof them being fan boys.I am sure you were a "Fan Boy" at one point.

-------------------------------------

What's up with you people? You say "LW need more users!!" out one end, but don't want "Newbies". Make up your mind.

Since you already own a copy of LW, you should only be concerned with the $395/$495 aspect of it. The low price is to get new users, people who were on the fence, people who see the sweet results with software that's 1/10th the cost of "High End" software. Who are you to tell Newtek how to run their company? Obviously they did their homework, and they find the prices listed in the annoucement to be just.

Newtek has always done what they can for the users. People were preaching the doom of Newtek when some folks split to "that company". Newtek is/has been listening to the users, "Noobs" and "Vets" alike. New blood, quick updates. You're too busy crying and speculating over the small stuff to really care.

When people say "I am gonna jump ship", I say "What are you waiting for?". Newtek is not my company, but I am sure Newtek doesn't need "threats" from users.

hrgiger
08-02-2005, 02:05 PM
Actually Starbase, I had not considered the fact that this might make people consider buying additional seats of Lightwave at that price. You could arm a small studio with Lightwave with what you would pay for one seat of XSI or Maya (the full featured ones obviously).

Chuck
08-02-2005, 02:09 PM
Again.. at the expense of making available higher end features tha cost more dollars to develop, you have more "kids" learning Lightwave.

Archiea, the company in this industry that actually has the most long term experience with what revenue is likely to be like at a variety of levels from $2500 and down and how it would actually affect development is us. We have a lot of data over 15 years at a lot of different price points in that continuum. Our specialty has always been to offer products that provide a good alternative to competing products that are several times more expensive. We already know how to do this successfully in more than just 3D graphics, and I think we have the best talent for achieving it that we've ever had, in terms of both development and management of LightWave.

As it happens, your assumptions about the implications as far as revenue are simply incorrect, from experience. As far as your points about some users being price snobs - well, yes, there are some of those around, but there are a lot more folks in the production industry who want to make better productions at the best possible price, and we are confident that we can provide a tool with the capability and quality to be an easy choice.

starbase1
08-02-2005, 02:09 PM
If you can't afford $1500, you have an income problem.


No, I have a family.

Lightwolf
08-02-2005, 02:10 PM
It takes a HUGE pull to get someone onto a new software platform.
True, but a pull could be a feature not being available... not even as an option.
I do see archieas point to a certain degree.But this goes back to the LW Extreme discussion (which is basically like the Inspire discussion ;) ).
Heck, if I'd need crowds to do a job, I'd either get XSI (well, at least look at the demo), or have a good look at massive. The price point of a piece of software doesn't matter (since that kind of job will have a _budgets_), the expandability matters.
Then again, since I'm kind of in the middle of the business, I do see both sides. My killer "pro" feature request is support anyhow ;)

Cheers,
Mike

archiea
08-02-2005, 02:12 PM
Archie, I find your repeated references to "fanboys" offensive. You've been with LightWave since '91 you say? Why didn't you bail when Newtek lowered their price from $2499? You could be considered a "fanboy" yourself for sticking with them this long when they obviously have no idea what they are doing.


I did bail in 2002, and yes I am a fanboy in the sense that I owe my roots to the amiga and newtek. But I'm also their biggest critic when they drop the ball. I like how Newtek stirrs the pot, but I don't like it when they undervalue themselves.

Take offense all you like. Call it tough love. Its not that I think NT will die tomorrow because they lowered their price. But its stupid to lower your price and STILL not offer a discovery edition for free. Maya's PLE's is a big contributer to my exposure to that program.. so I guess I'm a Maya fanboy now, eh?




Has it ever occured to you that after several price drops in the recent years that maybe, just MAYBE that Newtek (who has been in this business a very long time as evidenced by your own testimony) actually knows how to run a successful business? Maybe they have seen first hand what cutting prices can do for the bottom line? Maybe, just MAYBE they actually know more about selling software than... *gasp*... you do? ;)

Newtek has always been lean and has always trimmed the fat. But they also undersell themselves as underdogs when the industry no longer recognizes underdogs. Look at Avid, Apple, linux, Shake, etc.. all underdogs that have gone mainstream. Newtek seems to shun the mainstream and seems content with their "amateur" status..

colkai
08-02-2005, 02:14 PM
No, I have a family.
You too huh, ain't those mortgages a pain?

Ahh to be young free and single, (does quick double check), Phew, the wife didn't see me post that. :p
Aw heck, forget free and single, just to be young hehe...

colkai
08-02-2005, 02:16 PM
Archiea, the company in this industry that actually has the most long term experience with what revenue is likely to be like at a variety of levels from $2500 and down and how it would actually affect development is us. We have a lot of data over 15 years at a lot of different price points in that continuum.

Darn straight - Chuck da man! Of course, he's Chuck da "hey - where'd everybody go?" at the moment, (will someone please get this guy a beer?).

Let's just say, there are those of us out here, very grateful that Newtek has always wanted the "little guy" to be able to achieve their dreams.
:beerchug: :beerchug:

hrgiger
08-02-2005, 02:16 PM
Well Archiea, it sounds like Lightwave is no longer for you. Times are changing for Lightwave in a major way but it doesn't sound like you'll be around to seem them. That's too bad. We'll miss ya. Buh-bye.

Oh, and just for the record.

If you think $1500 is a lot of money then you have an income problem? Believe it not, in this country $1500 is still a lot of money and just as much or more then some people who work full time make in a month. Even when I have money, I remember how hard I had to work for it when times weren't so good. You have forgotten or have never known.

Referring to stores like Wal-mart and best buy as 'ghetto'? That towel you buy at Wal-mart is just as good as the one you bought at Macy's. Just one is overpriced that's all.

Lightwolf
08-02-2005, 02:31 PM
Referring to stores like Wal-mart and best buy as 'ghetto'? That towel you buy at Wal-mart is just as good as the one you bought at Macy's. Just one is overpriced that's all.
Hm, does that mean NT will outsorce the LW development to China now as well? ;) - scnr.

Yes, of course 1500$ is a lot of money, and I had to wait more than I wanted to to be able to afford upgrades as well. Then again, I've also been in projects where we shelled out a lot in just a couple of days to be able to handle the task at hand.

Cheers,
Mike

Meaty
08-02-2005, 02:34 PM
For the record... Newtek is a private company. This means that stock in Newtek is not publically traded, and, as a result, their financial situation is a complete mystery to everyone who has posted in this thread with the exception of Chuck.

Additionally, I am sure Newtek certainly did lots of research and probably paid a consultant or two to provide valuable market research prior to making the decision to lower the price of Lightwave.

This does not mean that lowering the price was a good business decision; however, having basically zero insight into Newtek's financials or the market research which was performed, this DOES mean that none of you have any clue whether or not it was a good business decision either. Just be thankful that the powers-that-be have judged, after extensive research, that the key to continued success is LOWERING the price, not raising it!!

archiea
08-02-2005, 02:40 PM
Jesus, this is the only product I've ever known where the customers argue when the price goes down. Perhaps it's just because you have a penis, but I think you should lose the c0ck strutting attitude. And by c0ck, I mean male chicken of course. Why do you feel that Lightwave has to be better then every other app out there?


I'll settle for comperable. Lets leave jesus and our peni out of it! :D




Lightwave is and is still going through a major overhaul and rendering will be faster and higher quality, OpenGL will now be supported, edges and ngon support, major core changes, the SDK is being opened to third party renders.....so on and so on. Then what happens? The price drops and people complain.... :rolleyes:

yes. Because a dollar is a dollar... and I see less dollars as less money spent on Lightwave. walmart spends alot less money on their products. You see walmart clothes on any high fashion models?




Yes, there are people out there who won't buy something if they think it's not priced high enough. These are what you call elitest morons. And they should be scraped from the gene pool. Painfully scraped. To discourage more moronic behaviour.


No, there is such a thing known as value. I'm happy with my saturn, but if I want to paymore money for a refined product and service like a BMW, is that bad? This is what I mean about the way the community has degenerated here, where the notion that people who use higher priced software are elitist. Comps look better in shake than they do out of After efftcts.. shake costs more.. does that make me an elitist?

Associating a value to something is what gives one a standard of living. And you can do it without being a snob..

tech jobs leave the US, salaries don't go up.. but the price of property (basically the cost of living) goes up like 100%, especially here in LA. So the qualityof life goes down here while in india the quality of life goes up because theyare enjoying a boom in the job market. This is the notion of associating a value to something.. in this case the tech job market. By lowering the value of the tech jobs.. i.e. cheaper overseas labor, the associated "value" of that skill goes down.. Wa associating a "value" to that skill elitist?



And yes, there are companies that charge as much money as possible because they know people will pay their prices. Lexus, Nike, Bloomingdales....


But in the case of a lexus, its better buit, bloomindales carries far more interesting fashion than Walmart. Is it elitist to want that?



Or perhaps someone can explain to me why I should pay $100 for a pair of shoes that Nike paid some third world starving kid 25 cents an hour to make? You could never explain that one to me.


Is LW made overseas with "starving kids"? Because if they did, and LW was at Best buy for $99 as you so desired, then at what value can you charge yoru animation services if everyone on your block can do 3D animations...

You see this is where a debate in this forum degenerates to a personal squable with people's complexes.. in this case is the view of Elitist by the LW users here who where perhaps chided by some "elitist" may auser or something.. and they had to validate their software choice. And now everyone gets on the defensive.

I ask again, where is integrated SSS, fur, stable dynamics, advanced rendering options, 3D tracking, etc.. I mean what does wanting those features make one elitist, or that matter have to do with starving children making Nike shoes. Remember you are the one making the Walmart reference and they also use starving childrend to make clothes..

I mean, you see how pathetic the dicussion have become on these forums because people are so defensive... about software....



Yet there's still people who pay their elitest pricing just so they can have that little symbol on their clothes. They're all jagoffs as far as I'm concerned. And personally, I would never do business with them no matter how rich and worthless I was.
And it's good to see Newtek stick it those companies by severely underselling them in price. :lwicon:

Ok, this is complete retarded.. You are associating the pricing of 3D software... to people who buy brand sneakers for logos.. You know.. People aren't as dumb as that... in our business.. Go to the maya and XSI page.. see what a few grand will buy you.. Do you really see Newtek "sticking it" to these guys with their pricing.. like some one who wants advanced shaders and crowd control will say "oh screw xsi, LW just dropped their price.. whoo-hooo" I mean you mass people who desire advanced feature sets to those who want to buy Nike sneakers? Am I really arguring with you?

archiea
08-02-2005, 02:48 PM
As one of those everyday Joes, I totally resent such an attitude.
If you come over all elistist like that, with a superior "professional" stance, don't be surprised if someone else looks down at you because you don't measure up to their percieved "professionalism".

Frankly, if that's what it takes to be a professional, long may Newtek cater to us poor dumb schmucks!

I'm an average joe as well, and I don't take offense to that statement. In fact Its completely true. I've used everything from after effects to flame. Flame artist tend to be elitist compared to after effects artist. I learned flame and managed to not be an elitist, but I do associate a value to the effort it took to learn Flame. And its way more than after effects. People seem to have a problem with this. I just hopped on. Same with maya.. I saw a higher value associated with that work comapred to Lightwave. I still love Lightwave, and I want it to be at a level with maya as far as functionality (although LW exceeds maya in some areas), and i'll pay more if NT needs the extra dollars to spee dup development. Does that make me an elitist?

beverins
08-02-2005, 02:49 PM
::chimes in::

I have to agree, though, on Archiea's comment about Maya PLE, and that its included with a game, and as well has plugins or whatever to be able to interface with that game so as to be able to make mods with it.

Take a look at some gaming forums. Modding is really hot. And when I ask these kids on "well, how do I make a map level in Medal Of Honor Allied Assault in Lightwave" (yes, I know its a really old game) I get a lot of a) "lightwave?" b) "why don't you use 3DStudio" or c) "just use GTKRadiant" (admittedly Radiant is free, and I'll say pretty good for freeware). Granted, some games are made directly with LW, but its still a bother and a half to actually get it to work sometimes - you STILL need to use either plugins / utilities that are command line only, or use an intermediary utility like Radiant which of course doesn't actually load in Lightwave files.

None of this Newtek's fault, I admit (just my own inability to work out a working methodology and lack of patience with programming and the like)... but still it would be nice to dream that one day I could buy Half Life 3 with Lightwave: Half Life Edition for, say, $80 and I could easily make any visual modification to the game with transparent ease. People unfamiliar with LW would then pick it up and use it - and then be able to see the brilliance of the program. Some undoubtedly will hate it, many will love it. Those that love it would now maybe pick up the full version. Make this HL3 version of the program with an open SDK or something for plugins to other programs, and the modding community will take care of making the tool mesh with other games. The reason that LW has no *good* and *easy to use* mod tools are that nobody seems to even know that it exists.

And yes, Im completely off topic. Or am I....? (mysterious music)

(where are those siggraph videos.... Gimme something to stop posting drivel, guys! If you had streamed live... *cough*)

archiea
08-02-2005, 02:55 PM
whoa - boy you really have got the "elitist" bug ain't ya?

One thing as well, I notice in all your "high end" statements, it always falls to SSS, fur and occlusion. It couldn't be, by any chance, that those are the things you specifically want could it?
Trouble is, you ain't "high-end" enough fo those features, becaue a lot of the features added come from requests made by the film and TV studios I'm sure.

One more point, the lack of these high-end features has so far not stopped Newtek continuing to thrive when other companies are getting bought out and has not stopped them winning countless awards for FX work, regardless of price!

Actually, the elitist bug is always brought about by the folks here. And I point to that as a degeneration of the community here.

Like I've said before... NT was the underdog that threw the large giants into a spin in the early nineties. companies like apple, avid, linux, etc did the same too. Difference is that they continued to grow while NT seems content with the underdog status. This, in turn, is fueled by the community here with the "screw hollywood elitist" mantra. I say screw them too.. by become as skilled and as rich as they are..

hrgiger
08-02-2005, 02:58 PM
Ok, this is complete retarded.. You are associating the pricing of 3D software... to people who buy brand sneakers for logos.. You know.. People aren't as dumb as that... in our business..

Oh yes they are.


Go to the maya and XSI page.. see what a few grand will buy you.. Do you really see Newtek "sticking it" to these guys with their pricing..

Yes.


like some one who wants advanced shaders and crowd control will say "oh screw xsi, LW just dropped their price.. whoo-hooo" I mean you mass people who desire advanced feature sets to those who want to buy Nike sneakers? Am I really arguring with you?

Once again, you look at the price drop and you see nothing else. Have you looked at the [incomplete] feature list of 9 and the innovation that has happened within the software during the 8.X cycle?

archiea
08-02-2005, 03:04 PM
Yet, other then a price drop, I don't see Newtek making any backwards strides in innovation at this point. What future are you concerned about? It shouldn't be for Lightwave, not that I can see...

Let's see, I've heard people switch to apps for the following reasons.....

No third party renders....
No edges or ngons....
An un-unified app.....
Poor OpenGL....
Slow renderer....
Poor SDK access for programmers...
No modeler functions in Layout....
No orthographic rendering...
etc....

It seems that all of these and more issues have been addressed with Lightwave 8.5 and 9 and they're still adding developers.


Where is 8.5? Is it out yet? Nope? Well..... Some people like to base their future on more than just press releases...




This may not rival some of the big packages (at this point) but it certainly puts them pretty close. How long do you think studios will keep using $6,000 software when they can complete the job with $800 software? Yes, everyone says you won't get a job unless you know Maya but first of all, things change...and secondly, everyone also knows that if you're talented enough, it doesn't matter what software you use. I can cite you a few big examples of people who work in Hollywood off of their work done in Animation Master which incidentally is a $300 program. What's all the fuss about?

Yeah, but is this person who now works in hollywood still use HASH.. or has moved up to LW even? No, they are on Maya...

Earl
08-02-2005, 03:07 PM
Earl, you should not have gone there. Please accept this long distance b#tch slap.
:foreheads

hehe, too late now!

beverins
08-02-2005, 03:24 PM
I think the bone of contention is that for $800, can Newtek maintain the footrace with Maya, XSI and even Houdini development? LW is in that league (at least I consider it to be), and the fear is that for $800 the software turns into something resembling Electric Image or Truespace in their ability to keep up with the new tech constantly being invented. That's the entire worry in a nutshell.

Basically, to my mind anyway, LW is every bit as powerful as Maya is. Perhaps the only thing holding it back is the way it was built (i.e. Maya is really just a gui built on top of the scripting language, while LW is a compiled program with some hooks, showing its Amiga heritage, which is not a bad thing - much cleaner install, etc.) but I honestly haven't seen anything Maya can do that LW cannot with only using the off-the-shelf supplied software... not adding anything to the software save for perhaps some expressions and minor scripts for taking care of mundane tasks.

So why am I saying this? Using this flawed analogy, if Newtek can essentially "give me Maya for $800", who am I to complain? That's outstanding. The trick is, can they keep on "giving me Maya for $800"? Even when Maya metamorphs into Version 8, 9 and 10? I don't want LW to get where even Electric Image passes them by... Can the footrace be kept at least to its current pace at $800? I think that's where the core of this debate comes from. The nonsense about clients, impressions, etc, to my mind are avoiding the question and inciting flame wars.

Imatk
08-02-2005, 03:32 PM
I think the bone of contention is that for $800, can Newtek maintain the footrace with Maya, XSI and even Houdini development?

Agreed... that's the bone... that and the fact that they are behind in some areas already.

hrgiger
08-02-2005, 03:32 PM
I agree about Lightwave being just as powerful as Maya, they each have their strengths and weaknesses.
My issue with Archia's arguments is that he's basically stating that people are leaving Lightwave in droves because there's no SSS. Or there is no crowd simulation or integrated fur plug-in. Unfortunately, if Archiea had bothered to look, he would see that there is a way to do all of these things with Lightwave and third party vendors, and still at less of the cost of Maya unlimited.
I would grant that yes, some people have left Lightwave because of missing features like edges, ngons, integration (or lack of rather), etc...But as Lightwave adds these features and we've already seen the list for 9 and what it will bring (yes, I know, vaporware at this point, but I don't think the Newtek developers are just writing things down just for something to do), the lines between what can be done in Lightwave and what can be done in a much higher priced app will quickly begin to blur. And that's the bottom line. That is when an $800 price tag will start to appeal to people.

rapscallion
08-02-2005, 03:32 PM
hei...hi...I've read two different press releases about the upcoming LW9 release...one of them showed a reduced upgrade price, but another mentioned that all registered owners of LW8 will get a free upgrade to LW9...anybody know the reality of this situation? thanks for the info...

...wishing the best...from the void...jpr...

Earl
08-02-2005, 03:33 PM
yes. Because a dollar is a dollar... and I see less dollars as less money spent on Lightwave. walmart spends alot less money on their products. You see walmart clothes on any high fashion models?
Ack! Fashion is fickle. I don't choose my clothes based on what models wear.


Is LW made overseas with "starving kids"? Because if they did, and LW was at Best buy for $99 as you so desired, then at what value can you charge yoru animation services if everyone on your block can do 3D animations...
First of all, Best Buy doesn't "choose" what software is on their shelf based on price. Nor do they even "choose" it. They simple sell the shelf space. NewTek could right now buy some shelf space from Best Buy and sell LightWave there for $2000 and Best Buy wouldn't stop them.



I ask again, where is integrated SSS, fur, stable dynamics, advanced rendering options, 3D tracking, etc..
Well if the current development team had been in control of LightWave since version 6.0 we'd probably see all these cool new features integrated. But this development team has just settled in. They've just now finished cleaning up the mess the last development team left, and with the core architecture changes that are taking place they're finally ready to start adding all the cool features we want. Come on, the feature list for LW 9 far outweighs the feature lists announced for the upgrades to Maya and XSI and Max. How much faster do you expect the dev team to work? If they continue at this pace unhindered they would surpass the snail race that Maya and XSI are currently in.

robinson
08-02-2005, 03:53 PM
I agree with you in a lot of points Archiea, here is the solution :)

Everybody who wants to take a higher rate, just tell your clients you work with Maya or XSI (btw, Maya works better, everybody knows Maya) and produce with a cheap software (Lightwave).
In my experience a lot of companies and freelancers work that way for years already…

BTW, great feature list for lightwave 9, nice to see you are getting back on track :thumbsup:, but cutting the price in half isn't going to help us keeping a higher rate, the most people i talk to here in germany don't even know lightwave. :grumpy:

archiea
08-02-2005, 04:12 PM
No, I have a family.

If you can't afford $1500 for the funtionality that Lightwave offers, you have an income problem. What are your rates?

archiea
08-02-2005, 04:25 PM
Oh yes they are.



Yes.



Once again, you look at the price drop and you see nothing else. Have you looked at the [incomplete] feature list of 9 and the innovation that has happened within the software during the 8.X cycle?

Glib responses are jsut that.. glib. you offer no argument and just drop unsubstanciated answers. Fact is, much ofthe 3D aps are so functional hthese days, unless your needs are specialized, you can't go wrong.


And the press release is just that.. a press release. for the record I turst NT and their projection. But its still a press release and LW is still at 8.3. Every argument I;ve placed here isbase on LW track record, while every counter argrument , when its not just plain crap, is based on conjecture.

I've stated here before.. companies have spent millios on advertising because impressions are a concern. people here cal impressions elitist. Thats too bad. Because I think companies like NT delivers the goods, they just don't always leave the right impression. If you think thats elitist too, I seem to remember the Amiga being advanced for its time, but because of bad/no marketing, public impression was otherwise. Well, at least they weren't elitist...

archiea
08-02-2005, 04:34 PM
I think the bone of contention is that for $800, can Newtek maintain the footrace with Maya, XSI and even Houdini development? LW is in that league (at least I consider it to be), and the fear is that for $800 the software turns into something resembling Electric Image or Truespace in their ability to keep up with the new tech constantly being invented. That's the entire worry in a nutshell.

Basically, to my mind anyway, LW is every bit as powerful as Maya is. Perhaps the only thing holding it back is the way it was built (i.e. Maya is really just a gui built on top of the scripting language, while LW is a compiled program with some hooks, showing its Amiga heritage, which is not a bad thing - much cleaner install, etc.) but I honestly haven't seen anything Maya can do that LW cannot with only using the off-the-shelf supplied software... not adding anything to the software save for perhaps some expressions and minor scripts for taking care of mundane tasks.

So why am I saying this? Using this flawed analogy, if Newtek can essentially "give me Maya for $800", who am I to complain? That's outstanding. The trick is, can they keep on "giving me Maya for $800"? Even when Maya metamorphs into Version 8, 9 and 10? I don't want LW to get where even Electric Image passes them by... Can the footrace be kept at least to its current pace at $800? I think that's where the core of this debate comes from. The nonsense about clients, impressions, etc, to my mind are avoiding the question and inciting flame wars.


Thanks!! this is put way more succinctly than I ever did!! :thumbsup: However, the notion of client presence is true. If you are working in an industrial video say in... OHIO... maybe not. If you work in Hollywood, its HUGE. The Clients are very well versed if only because of Maya;s adverstising on the back of every magazine. but its a reality that is there.. however you want to callit.. eleitist or otherwise...

archiea
08-02-2005, 04:44 PM
I agree about Lightwave being just as powerful as Maya, they each have their strengths and weaknesses.
My issue with Archia's arguments is that he's basically stating that people are leaving Lightwave in droves because there's no SSS. Or there is no crowd simulation or integrated fur plug-in. Unfortunately, if Archiea had bothered to look, he would see that there is a way to do all of these things with Lightwave and third party vendors, and still at less of the cost of Maya unlimited.


Integration is a big key, not just hunting and pecking for plug-ins.. which are not well advertised.. I'm talking about non LW users here.. Same could be said about Maya. Fact is that I have looked.. at everything.. and i've entered this debate with industry professionals. Many are just not left witht he impression that LW is up to task. that's Newtek's first failure.. something I've argued here for 3 years. So again, Hrgiger, your point is renderd moot because despite what current seasoned LW users know, the industry has moved on withtheir decisions...



I would grant that yes, some people have left Lightwave because of missing features like edges, ngons, integration (or lack of rather), etc...But as Lightwave adds these features and we've already seen the list for 9 and what it will bring (yes, I know, vaporware at this point, but I don't think the Newtek developers are just writing things down just for something to do), the lines between what can be done in Lightwave and what can be done in a much higher priced app will quickly begin to blur. And that's the bottom line. That is when an $800 price tag will start to appeal to people.

But you have lost the customers already.. If i had to leave LW for product X because the features weren;t available now, what makes you think that I;ll turn back to LS when those features are out 3 years later? I've already invest 3 years in a new app. People have moved on.

Then the blurred line that you are talking about is actually a widening gap, because the other app hasn't been at a stand still, nor has it truncated its income by lowering their price. They have offered lowered versions of their app to entice new users, while pressing forward with their premium customers.

your "bottom line" is based on press releases and conjecture. I point out the last three years history to you.

Chuck
08-02-2005, 04:58 PM
Glib responses are jsut that.. glib. you offer no argument and just drop unsubstanciated answers. Fact is, much ofthe 3D aps are so functional hthese days, unless your needs are specialized, you can't go wrong.


And the press release is just that.. a press release. for the record I turst NT and their projection. But its still a press release and LW is still at 8.3. Every argument I;ve placed here isbase on LW track record, while every counter argrument , when its not just plain crap, is based on conjecture.

I've stated here before.. companies have spent millios on advertising because impressions are a concern. people here cal impressions elitist. Thats too bad. Because I think companies like NT delivers the goods, they just don't always leave the right impression. If you think thats elitist too, I seem to remember the Amiga being advanced for its time, but because of bad/no marketing, public impression was otherwise. Well, at least they weren't elitist...

Archie, your comments are in fact no better substantiated than anyone else's here, and if they are based on our track record, the perspective is unique and debateable to say the least. Everyone who actually has LightWave and did not "jump ship in 2002" has a major piece of 9.0 in their hands right now - the extracted renderer, operating since the 8.2 release. The new team was able to make that change and no one, whether "fanboy" or...otherwise, noticed it. So they've got a lot more to show than just press releases, for anyone willing to actually take a look.

This thread has run its course. The community isn't "degenerated," just this conversation, because some folks can't be civil when disagreed with.