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Everything posted by 3D-Pangel

  1. Okay. I think what we all need to do is to wait until AFTER Siggraph to fully understand what the actual plan is for existing license holders. I think the "brain" trust of this new licensing plan is probably at Siggraph and most likely under siege by users actually at the conference. If the sentiment of people on CG Talk or on the Cafe is any indication, I would not want to be them having to actually face people. Given the amount of contradictory information going around from all the various MAXON offices, then this whole roll-out is poorly conceived and executed. I think they actually thought it would be accepted whole cloth and with loving arms by the C4D community, otherwise they would have thought it through a bit better....which indicates (maybe at its heart) that they might have the best of intentions and are as surprised at our reaction as we are by their proposal. So let's give MAXON some time....at least until after Siggraph. Let's give them the benefit of the doubt and trust that MAXON will be ultimately still be MAXON when the dust settles and that all the indications of Adobe practices (like canceling perpetual license activation should you sign up for a subscription) is just so much mis-information....no matter how alarming it may be. Dave
  2. Okay....we all hate Adobe. We all hate subscriptions. We all hate that MAXON probably spent a good portion of their development dollars on a license activation routine (and they have the audacity to tout this a big 'New" feature). Given the options in how this is being managed and how "perpetual" licenses are being managed, you are paying a premium for actually owning something. Shame on us for wanting to actually own something. How "old school". Look, renting scares me for the simple reason that I want to be able to afford using C4D in my retirement years (7 years away). I don't know what the future holds. One illness or disaster (natural, man made or financial) can significantly change anyone's retirement plans such that they can no longer afford C4D. Should you fall on hard times as a retiree then under the subscription plan, you are left with NOTHING! So owning brings comfort, but you can see how MAXON is financially pushing everyone to subscription. This will only get worse over time (and I am thinking long term here). So here are a few things that MAXON could do with their license management and activation network that they spent so much time developing over the last year that could actually make me LOVE subscriptions (believe it or not): 1) Offer a hobbyist license. If you truly believe in "3D for the whole world" and want to distinguish yourself from the pack, then offer a significantly discounted license for people like me who are just using C4D because we love the program. Now, to protect yourself you can make it resolution limited at render time (well below what may be required for broadcast or print media but up there with what looks good on consumer high-def monitors). You can use your licensing routines such that any C4D file saved using a hobbyist license can ONLY be opened using a hobbyist license. That way you can't create the file on a hobbyist license then sign up for one month of professional license to do all your rendering. 2) Monthly Billing. Actually bill us each month. Don't tell us it is a "monthly rate" but then want the money for the entire year all at once under the annual subscription plan. Should financial catastrophe strike, you may be more likely to swing a monthly payment than coming up with $720 USD all in one shot. Your licensing network could easily shut down your activation should you fail to make a payment (eg. your credit card gets declined). Give the person 2 months of grace period to get back on the billing program. Should you not pay for over that grace period, then your only choice is pay the higher per month rate each month until your original annual subscription period ends. If MAXON does BOTH of these, then I could actually love what you are proposing. So when MAXON says "3D for the whole world", then embracing these two concepts shows that you are in fact practicing what you preach...or in more current slang "eating your own dog food". If not, then you are Adobe. Dave
  3. Wow....so even if I decide to buy a perpetual R21 license, that license is ONLY perpetual if I continually upgrade via new perpetual licenses. Once I switch to subscription, my perpetual license fails to activate. That is just wrong. Also, I think someone said that the cost of the R21 perpetual license was 850 euro which is 15% more than the annual subscription price. So my fears are realized: there is a strong push to perpetual and R20 is the last truly permanent license you can own whose activation can never be tampered with by MAXON as it does not use their server activation routine (Note: Should MAXON ever push out a "bug-fix" for R20 in the future....be careful as that could also include the requirement for server activation). Sorry MAXON folks. No matter what you want to tell yourself so you can sleep at night, if you can turn off my perpetual license for whatever reason, you have become Adobe. It is as simple as that. Dave
  4. Can you clarify exactly what you are eligible to get? My MSA also expires at the end of August....so from the FAQ page, I "think" you can you still get R21 perpetual at the current MSA price. Can you confirm this? Also, not really sure what this means So I purchase R21 at the existing MSA price and then I purchase a subscription? Why would I do this? On the promise that they will release mid-year updates? This really makes no sense as it requires me to pay on the promise of a mid-year release. Never a good way to do business as things can happen that could prevent delivery (which leads to all sorts of nasty things....just look at e-on). So this is not smart...unless MAXON is sandbagging the feature set in R21 to insure that they can deliver something additional this year. If that is true, then the trust I once had in MAXON is further eroded. Honestly, please someone at MAXON provide some clarity and examples for what options each Prime, Broadcast and Studio MSA owner will have in terms of cost, service, etc. Why is this such a mystery? Be upfront and honest. Tell us what's planned for mid-year release. Let us decide how we proceed. Also, all the hints at discounts are getting tiring. Again, why the mystery....I thought you folks had a better handle on your business such that pricing and discount decisions would be fully made before you announced....not after. Again, my disappointment grows daily. Also, will all charges be in Euro's because right now that is all the pricing page shows (the US shop has nothing listed yet). Will I also be paying exchange rate fees? This just get's better and better. MAXON...get your act together. Dave P.S. So exactly how improved is that Blender interface?
  5. MAXON really should change it’s R21 catch phrase from “3D for the whole world” to “3D for new customers only” Existing customers are to be left hanging to find out what years of customer loyalty really means to MAXON until we can beat the greedy exec’s and accountants into submission - stay tuned. Dave
  6. LMFAO! My wish is that someone prints that out, hacks into R20 to have that appear as the splash screen so that every time you start up R20 it serves as a great reminder why people should NOT upgrade. Dave
  7. So why the delay in getting this important information out? Honestly, this is the worst handled roll-out of any release ever and add to that the much longer message on how MAXON is making C4D for "the world" but (by your own admission) we just haven't worked out how to handle existing customers yet. Honestly, do you find that approach acceptable? Was MAXON waiting to hear how their existing customer base would react to the news before they decide on the pricing of upgrades to perpetual licenses? If so, then I hope the message is loud and clear that we are not happy. This is how I am processing this: Given that R21 is pretty much a "meh" release, then simply let it go. Do not upgrade...do not subscribe. This means NO INCOME TO MAXON. There is no compelling reason why I would need to move into R21 given that you are doing nothing to compel me to do so as a Studio owner. The costs are the same but I either lose Cineversity or I lose a perpetual license. The new features certainly are not a huge attraction. So why do anything? In the absence of any other information from MAXON, then doing nothing is in my best interests. Here is why: If there is something I need in R21 or a future release for a short project, then subscribe for 1 or 2 months only. Again, loss of revenue to MAXON. Wait a few years (and I mean many years) and set aside the money I would have used for an MSA and then make a decision on whether or not I buy a perpetual license of a future version at your reduced price. Of course, if all future releases follow the Adobe model and are complete rubbish, then I have lost nothing....but MAXON has lost revenue. If the price of a perpetual license increases or you no longer offer them, then I am forced into the subscription plan --- but I wold have ended up there anyway had I continued to be a loyal supporter in all those years. Again, no loss to me (in fact, I save a ton of money) but a loss of revenue to MAXON What really makes this the most bone-headed, poorly thought out release ever is that MAXON has no information on how to handle existing customers. All you tell us is to use the perpetual license...but based on the arguments above, it is advantageous for us NOT to jump into that model. No matter what version you have now, costs go up or your loose service (ability to own your software or Cineversity). So doing nothing is the best choice. Is this really 3D for the whole world? Is this really what you want? Bring back the MSA with Cineversity for the perpetual license holder. It's bad enough you are going to make me re-login every two weeks! Dave
  8. I understand that MAXON feels that they have changed the game on DCC costs and is trying to provide "value to every user", but to a Studio user it feels more like a loss than a gain. The annual MSA used to be $650 USD and was raised to $720. With that you got a perpetual license and Cineversity. Now for the same amount ($59.99 a month for 12 months or $719.88 per year) you no longer get a perpetual license. So going the subscription route is the same annual cost as before but you no longer get to use R21 should you unsubscribe. That is a loss over the old MSA cost model with perpetual licenses. Now, I have no idea what the R20 to R21 upgrade price is for a perpetual license but given that you lose Cineversity, that choice is also a loss over what we had before. So exactly what do current holders of an R20 Studio MSA really get out of this "game changing" approach to making DCC software affordable? All I feel is loss....no matter how you spin it. Thank you MAXON. Until my "Customer portal" opens up with my options, this is how you leave me: a slow burning realization of what 10 years of loyalty means to you. Hopefully that changes in the near future. Dave
  9. So are you having a flashback to R17? Didn't they also build that one up as a major titanic shift to the 3D world? Whereas with R20, they were quite modest. So I guess the rule is that if the MAXON publicity department swings into over-drive ahead of a release announcement, we should lower our expectations. Also, the technical glitches to Dave's presentation did not help Interesting that in the 10 minutes spent on features, the slide presentation went all over the place. The 20 minutes on subscriptions and everything becomes stable. Go figure. So I am not disappointed because I sensed that R21 was going to be so-so and did not hope for much. Still disappointed about the lack of improvements to the symmetry tool but I will admit the that the bevel improvements are very nice. So when can we find out what "discounts" they are giving to Studio MSA holders? When will my MAXON portal be open for business? Like Dave's presentation, for me it now becomes all about the money!!! Dave
  10. Thank you Srek....that is great to hear. I will then proceed as I have in the past. The only thing I lose is access to Cineversity....which hurts a bit. Dave
  11. I know that R21 will not be the last perpetual license. I am free to purchase a whole NEW license past R21. What I am concerned about is whether or not I will be allowed to upgrade from an R21 perpetual license to an R22 perpetual license in the US!! Can that question be answered as it has a huge bearing on how I proceed as my MSA expires at the end of August. Dave
  12. So can whole UV point selections be snapped as a whole to other UV point selections? That would be a huge improvement. Dave
  13. So my understanding is this: R21 will be the last perpetual license you can own and only because they need to transition MSA owners over the next year to the subscription model. The web-site has this rather ambiguous statement: "Some future Cinema 4D upgrades may be available only to subscription customers, while others may be available as perpetual licenses at upgrade pricing. I read this in the context of this transition year only. So can someone please confirm this for me? Please answer this simple question: If I get an R21 perpetual license, what are my options for getting R22? Will it be by subscription only or can I again upgrade my R21 perpetual license to a perpetual licenese for R22? If the answer is all future versions beyond R21 will be available ONLY by subscription, then subscriptions are inevitable....unless of course you want to purchase a perpetual license at full cost. Therefore, my plan would be to get R21 and Redshift perpetual license this year because then at least I have the latest update I can get should I decide NOT to follow the subscription plan in future years. So can someone from MAXON please answer this question? Dave
  14. Remember folks, C4D is like the Star Trek Movies....all the odd number ones are not as good as the even numbered ones. I don't know what you were hoping for, but I had low expectations. Still no symmetry tool though. The character animation tools though need more explanation. Some interest there but with all the technical glitches, the R21 announcement was a little confusing and jumbled. Not a good first showing. So...for Studio Users, the cost is no change (still $720 per year). The advantage goes to the non-Studio users who can now get Studio for the cost of the Studio MSA. That is a huge advantage to everyone....but once again Studio users get no benefits. Also, what happens if you decide NOT to go with the subscription model this year but to keep going with your existing R20 perpetual version....maybe even for the next few years? Can you then switch to a subscription model WITHOUT having to pay a huge amount for the upgrade to the latest version? What if I just want to wait a few months before getting into the subscription model? My MSA expires on 8/31/2019....so what happens if I decide to wait until December before getting into a new subscription? Now one advantage is the inclusion of Redshift into the subscription program. That represents a $264 a year cost. Prior to being purchased by MAXON, what was the annual maintenance cost for Redshift? Was it less than $264? If so, that is a pretty good deal as now you get up-to-date Redshift without having to buy a perpetual license. I hope I am understanding this subscription program correctly. Also, what happens if one year I want Redshift but then the next year I do not? Am I locked in? Are their issues to flip flop from year to year? If you are REALLY making this as easy as you say, then there are some advantages in terms of missing MSA upgrade dates. Also, does Cineversity still come with the subscription? Thanks, Dave
  15. FYI - C4D Live is now broadcasting (showing some great show reels). Be sure to refresh your browser. In the past, C4D Live came with a moderated chat feature for those watching. Is that capability still available this year? Dave
  16. Under the impression that some of the announcements today may involve other companies, I have visited a few of those in case they goofed and slipped something ahead of what we hear from Dave McGarvan. So far nothing....which means either that my guesses about partnerships are wrong or there is a pretty well orchestrated cone of silence going on. ...damn...I hate waiting. Dave
  17. Hmnmm.....is the coffee in Los Angeles that bad? ;-)
  18. Count on it....and that's coming from an old duffer who has seen it all. Dave
  19. Take heart: Great art and talented artists will always find a way. I had the great opportunity to talk to a traditional matte painter from the golden days of photo-chemical/mechanical special effects (his big claim to fame is that he did the opening title shot for Ghostbusters). He also did matte paintings for Pirates of the Caribbean movies. The guy is talented. I met him at the MAXON Power Integration tour in Boston so he made the switch to digital. But what struck me from talking to him is that the shift to digital was a frightening change for the SFX artists of the day. And this guy new them all...all the greats (even Denis Muren who is the grandfather of digital VFX). The artists were all terrified (which is understandable) but what struck me is that even some of the seasoned VFX supervisors were scared (accept for Mr. Muren of course). Change is always scary. I used to study the old techniques as I have loved VFX since the 1960's when I was a young lad. What I have found is that knowledge of the old techniques provides useful insights in how to make things look real in the digital world. Hey, the old timers faced the same issues in the toothpicks and rubber band era of VFX too! Knowing how they solved it in the physical world helps replicating reality in the digital world as well. Well...new tools create new opportunities and possibilities. Just look at how many people are in the industry today as compared to the 1980's. DCC is a multi-billion dollar industry. Re-topology may be automated by the AI demons you fear, but hard-surface sculpting may now become an even bigger new industry than it is today with new tools and techniques you never would have considered unless you were pushed into it. Hey, you would never use boolean tools because right now it is easier to just polygon model it from the beginning then mash it together and fix it later. But what if you could use boolean modeling tools in ways you never dreamed of and get perfect quads with outstanding mesh flow because some AI was able to make it work? Your tremendous knowledge of quad modeling is only going to give you an advantage because even should an AI system do it for you, you will have a deeper understanding of what those algorithms need as you work with the new tools/techniques that these new capabilities create. That insight will help you push these new tools further than you could if you didn't have that knowledge and that will allow you to once again stand out as a gifted modeler. So have no fear. You are exceptionally talented modeler and while the tools may change, your talent, knowledge, experience and insights will always be in demand. So don't fear the change....just go with it. Dave
  20. So did I miss something concerning MAXON actually dropping their prices? Honestly, I don't see that happening -- I mean something has to pay for the Redshift acquisition and I do see opportunities where an acquisition strategy in key areas makes sense. For DCC companies to keep up with the pace of technological change internally is becoming more and more of an investment problem. The pace of change the and the technical challenges these changes represent increase each year. You can meet those challenges with internal hiring (which MAXON has been doing) but at some point, you have slow that down given the costs. Acquisitions in key areas that are not core to MAXON's competitive advantage may be a faster/cheaper/better way of keeping up. If so, I don't foresee a price cut unless MAXON's market share is just so glorious that it keeps them cash rich. So....did I miss something where there was actual discussion from MAXON concerning a price "cut" --- or just new pricing "models" (they are rarely the same for everyone....some people are going to end up paying more)? Dave
  21. Not sure, but as Dave McGavran posted in this thread, I have to ask "Is that the first time MAXON's CEO has not only visited the forum but actually posted on it?" If so, that is a welcome change! The other welcome (and highly anticipated) changes "may" be announced tomorrow if this email I received from MAXON is any indication: So...a lost day of productivity for me tomorrow as I listen to this news. R20 was such a tremendous release, it will be a tough act to follow so I am not hoping for much with R21. But, if R21 is going to be announced then my "safe bet" on new features will be that the material node editor will be propagated to Xpresso as well, more field modifiers will be added, and more material nodes will be added (building on their acquisition of Redshift). What remains a mystery for me is if Redshift becomes a standard part of Studio. We will have to wait and see. Welcome additions that I have always hoped for: new symmetry tool. That would be nice. Give me this and R21 is a success. I told you my expectations are low. Long shots: Native fluid simulation. X-Particles will be tough to beat but C4D needs a native fluid simulation solution given its position in the marketplace and, as fluids simulation is becoming more common in motion graphics, its absence is becoming noticeable. Really long shots: Complete and seamless two way exchange between C4D and Substance Designer and Substance Painter...like one click easy. Now, Adobe did purchase Allgorithmic and Mr. McGavran does have some connection with Adobe....sooo.....maybe this is not as much of a long shot as I would think. Quite possibly, complete integration of Substance Designer/Painter and C4D may have been in the works for a while - maybe even before Mr. McGarvan's arrival to MAXON (or what even opened the door for his new role as it's CEO). If that is true, it could explain why we have yet to see a complete rewrite of Bodypaint. Isn't speculation fun?!! Really....Really long shots: MAXON acquires Insydium. Yeah....that would be interesting and it would plug a number of holes with C4D (lack of fluids, aging TP and Pyrocluster module, and a GPU renderer in Cycles 4D should Redshift still remain a stand alone product). Now Insydium is doing great on its own, so it is a long shot...but everyone has their price and the chaps at Insydium are, if anything, very smart! They would know a good deal when they see one. But one thing is sure....we will hear something about C4D's future direction tomorrow. Whatever comes, I am very happy with the way things are going so it is all a big plus to me. Dave P.S. Note the play on words with R21. "safe bets', "long shots'! The card game "21" is a gambling game after all.
  22. Interesting....they finally bottled Cerbera into a plugin. ...and some said it couldn't be done. ;-) Dave
  23. Pretty confident you would get the same experience from X-Particles. I was part of an early beta team and they are pretty strict that their beta team members are regularly exercising the program and posting results/comments/issues. Very well structured and disciplined. I would imagine that MAXON is no different - but then again, they do share a common history. I have a rather demanding day job, so out of respect to those that were putting in the time that was required, I had to withdraw myself from the beta program. But you can see the benefits: Like C4D, XP is just one amazing and stable piece of software. Don't deny yourself the "joy of XP"" (wow...that could be a good book title ;-) if your goal is to keep things stable. -Dave
  24. Don't you feel a little guilty when C4D crashes, you send a crash report to MAXON and they come back telling you that it was due to a plugin? Kind of like the same feeling you would get should you accidentally serve sour milk to your child and they throw up. "I am so sorry Cinema....I didn't mean to feed you that plugin!!" Dave
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