August 22, 2006

Dear sweet baby jebus...

by Chris Randall

And from the "careful what you wish for" category, Reverence is a smash hit, I guess. Yesterday was (by far) the biggest sales day ever for Audio Damage, and Reverence has sold more in one day than some of our other plugins have sold, period. It is a happy time.

On the flip side, I'm totally swamped with NFR requests and "I bought the wrong version" and such like that. It's really quite amazing how many people want free shit from a company that barely makes ends meet.

As an aside, our original t-shirt company _finally_ got back to me with a quote for the high quality shirts, and it is quite a bit lower than the first company, so it looks like we're going to be able to get the shirts we wanted in the first place, and still have 'em for $20 like the last batch. All's well that ends well. I'm a little too busy to deal with that just now; I'll get it rolling next week.

In any case, back to the flip-flop factory. While I'm busy, hey, look, Jack White's house is for sale, if you're really looking for that White Stripes vibe. Nice place, I'll say that much. I don't even mind the red. (Thanks to fmasseti.)



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Aug.23.2006 @ 11:51 AM
Adam Schabtach
"What about some sort of web based way of loading in your own sample to a mock up of the plug? Now I'm just asking too much."

Um, yeah, you're asking too much. You're asking us to implement a rather sophisticated web-based mechanism which would enable people to use our software for free. Yeah, we'll get right on that.



Aug.23.2006 @ 12:08 PM
I think a demo would definitely be worthwhile. Sure $40 is a no-brainer but the low price also inspires a bit of skepticism. It just makes me think "eh, nice interface but how good can it be?" After making a few $40 or $50 impulse buys of plugins that turn out to be rarely useful, one starts to get more cautious.

I don't think the demo has anything to do with Ronin sales. I think people are attracted to simple plugins that do one thing well and the interface of Ronin just looks much more cluttered and less appealing than some of your other plugins.

The only way a demo would mean less sales is if people are buying the plugin now and not really digging it. If would think it might be better to have fewer customers who are truly satisfied with their purchase than a bunch of people who made an impulse purchase they regret. If you believe in your product you should be confident that a demo will only bring in more customers.


Aug.23.2006 @ 12:36 PM
Re: "I would think it might be better to have fewer customers who are truly satisfied with their purchase than a bunch of people who made an impulse purchase they regret."

That's exactly why there is a money-back return policy. Which to my mind is way better, not only does it weed out those who aren't interested in buying the product (which is 95% of most demo downloaders) but it is the kind of policy that works in favour of the customer (a very rare thing these days, especially with software).

Seriously, I've bought stuff even with a demo that two days later thought "why did I buy this piece of crap?"


Aug.23.2006 @ 12:39 PM
Adam Schabtach
If we had a bunch of people who made impulse purchases they regretted, we'd issue a lot of refunds also. We issue extremely few refunds (usually to people running whack-ass out-of-date systems which we don't have the resources to debug), so we conclude that our customers are happy with their purchases.

I never disputed that demos would bring in more customers. I merely pointed out that producing demos costs us in many ways, and our prices would have to go up correspondingly. That's simple business reasoning, not a lack of confidence in our products. If I didn't have confidence in our products I wouldn't have the balls to put 'em up for sale, now, would I?



Aug.23.2006 @ 12:40 PM
actually the mp3 give a very good impression , it's as good as a demo.

Aug.23.2006 @ 12:53 PM
Adam Schabtach
"Chris what is your biggest market ? vst windows or mac vst/au ?
At the moment i came across your products i actually bought all the AU stuff that was available, i was interested in ronin but only vst.
good job on reverence."

I think last time we ran the stats, our customers were about 67% Mac users, and we didn't have a way to break down Mac VST vs. AU because it's the same installer for both so we don't know which people actually use.

We're slogging our way through AU updates of the older stuff. It's not very fun work (compared to, say, building a new reverb) but we understand the desire for AU versions. The next thing we're working on is a VST 2.4/UB/AU update of Deverb, and after that we'll probably turn our attention to Ronin. The older products are difficult to bring up to date because they were written before I developed the framework which enables us to produce VST and AU versions that share a large amount of common code. That means that things like Deverb and Ronin have to be re-written largely from scratch, and doing that involves hidden gotchas like making sure that existing presets in the hands of our customers will continue to work with the new version.

Apple did not do the world any favors when they invented AU.



Aug.23.2006 @ 1:49 PM
So now that Reverance is out, what's next? (said with big shit-eating grin, and tongue firmly in cheek).

In all seriousness, thanks for yet another fantastically useful plug you two. AD is one of the few developers I've found doing truly useful plugs that aren't ridiculously bloated with features that only see use 5% of the time.


Aug.23.2006 @ 3:26 PM
Peter has a pretty glowing review of Reverence up on createdigital.

link []">link []

And bless his soul, he even put up audio clips, which I much appreciate. I hate reviews on the web where someone goes on about the sound of something but doesn't present us with the goods.


Aug.23.2006 @ 6:50 PM
"That's exactly why there is a money-back return policy. Which to my mind is way better,"

But I think that the price point comes into play again here. If I try the plugin out for a day and hate it I might ask for a refund but if I like it at first and then six months later realize that I never really use the thing I'm not going to bother asking for my $40 back. But judging by all of the emails you get asking for freebies I guess I'm probably alone in this :)

Maybe I'm also alone in thinking that mp3 samples are completely useless. Just so you know where I'm coming from, the only audio damage plugin I own is the 907a which I bought on sight but find that I never use. Now I'm very interested in Reverence, Phase Two, Dubstation and the Rat Shack Reverb but without a demo I don't feel like taking the $160 plunge. All sorts of questions spring to mind like is the ratshack reverb a one-trick pony? Is the phase two any better than the built-in Ableton Live phaser? Mp3 demos don't really answer these questions for me so I end up buying nothing when I might actually decide to buy 1 or 2 plugins after a real demo.

Damn, I just noticed that the 907a has been updated to include a wet/dry mix so maybe I should pay the $10 and upgrade.


Aug.23.2006 @ 7:02 PM
Don't forget that they have a free plug-in you can download and use, FuzzPlus. Use that to evaluate the general quality of their stuff (killer), then decide if $40 is worth it for a world-class reverb processor.

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