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Native Instruments : thoughts
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Author Native Instruments : thoughts
mattb
I have been a NI costumer for quite a few years. having used their products, like many others, in plenty published works.
In that regards, this post is not about their products, rather has to do with their policy and their support.

I used to know a bunch of reps at their artist relations that have always been very useful in addressing concerns and help us clients with good advice.
It is not anymore like that.

This is my story.

I purchased a Machine MK I when it first came out.From there I acquired a crossgrade to Kompakt 8, then an Update to 9, and another to 10.
Last year I decided to sell my Maschine MKII called up the NI office in LA asking what was the way to go about it and if I was still going to be able to use the updates.The answer was yes.

Last week I decided to purchase the K11 update.I log into my NI account, go to the product page where it says because I own the Komplete Update 10, I am entitled to a 99$ for the K11 update.




I could not get to install the update but in demo mode.
After a few phone convos with different tech support at NI, turns out that because I have sold the Maschine I lost my right to update price.
I wish my account did not offered the deal.So much for a tailored offer, right? A bit pissed, but whatever.
I ask then what is the cheapest option for me to use the update I have just purchased.


And here is the answer:




A bit suspicious about the consistency of information coming out from the Native Instrument channels, I decide to actually call the sale department to verify the information.

And of course it turns out that very information requested to address an issue being wrong.

As a costumer that have purchased a bunch products, hardware and single plug ins from their catalogue I feel really alienated to say the least.

As a professional I am definitely going to look at other options

As a human being it really suck feeling you have spent money on a company that have not even the courtesy to admit a major fuck up in multiple areas which including pricing, communicating proper information on their products in multiple instances (pre and post sale) , design of the sale platform, public relations.
KaOsphere
Unfortunately, there are countless threads on that specific matter.

The crossgrades are always bound to the original product which opened the crossgrade option.

This could be understandable...

But in the case of NI, this sucks...

Hard...

Just because when you got on that path, you're basically stuck...

Their system is not only rigid, it makes you enslaved...

When I sold my maschine I had to sell the Komplete 9U suite with it because it was not possible to transfer my licence to my s61 which also permitted the crossgrade route.

So I had to buy a new crossgrade to get back to Komplete which downgraded me from ultimate to standard by spending more money @NI... ( Crossgrades whorth nothing on the second sale market...)

What a nice move considering I also lost my R6 licence which was bought on top of K9 ultimate and not transferable on K10 for reasons I've never been given after dozens of support tickets...

To summarize :

I love my s61, FM8 and some Reaktor 5 ensembles but considering :

- K## ultimate is not so ultimate ( Only a few people really needs the "ultimate" stuffs and if they really need it, they probably have to grab some more chords/horns/whatever products anyway...)
- the Maschine "ignore bugs and users" fiasco
- the fact that any voucher you get are useable only on ( insert bad words here ) expansion ! ( Do not expect spending vouchers on something usefull ! )
- There have been absolutely no update on majors synths for years now like FM8 ( could you imagine you still can't drive enveloppes with midi cc ??????), Absynth
- Weeks to get support when not completly ignored.
- Forums which noone from NI reads and pretty much useless for real help...
- When they released their new licencing tool, countless users lost access to their product. ( In my case I had to reinstall from scratch and authorize with the old service center which costed me aprox. 5-6 Hours ) This is still not fixed after monthes...
- I have some more but enough !

I will probably never buy something from NI anytime soon...( I would have liked to write "ever again" but I'll probably update during a sale to a post K11 option...)

I'd rather Never maintain cash savings again instead !

Not to mention so many devs that makes really awesome tools for a bunch of $...
esotericmetal
Yeah, I have mixed feelings about NI. I'm glad I got Komplete 9 because I run a recording studio and every now and then someone asks if I have some specific sound and for the most part there's something usable there. The other day I had someone that wanted a choir, a pipe organ and a moog and I was easily able to get all of those sounds with Komplete and they sounded good and the client was happy.

Reaktor is great, though I find some aspects of it to be a total mess.

Some of their older synths like Massive, Absynth and FM8 can sound great even compared to newer stuff, but I always found the interface to be unusable. Why they haven't updated them is a mystery to me.
mattb
I do not have any problem with the pricing system.
My problem is with the technical support being absolutely clueless.
The first time when they told me I was going to be fine selling Machine.
The second time when they suggest me a solution (that cost money) that actually does NOT solve the problem.

What I see is a consistent perpetuating of misinformations from the official channels.And zero accountability for spreading wrong information.

And do not get me started commenting on the dick-ish attitude of the clueless staff.
Heathfinnie
I had a basic voucher that I was able to use on Traktor, not just an expansion.
apfEID
I am rather put off that they recently changed the upgrade paths to Komplete to be just from Komplete.

I own Absynth 4, Battery 3, Reaktor 5... and I'm forever stuck in this loop: I'd like to upgrade those to the latest versions, but if I do, I'm just throwing money away if I ever buy Komplete. But Komplete always hovers at a price where I'm just not sure I'd actually use it enough to make it worth my money. I want to play with Massive and FM8, but again, there's financial disincentive to piecemeal my NI collection. So I end up using other company's products.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
mt3
apfEID wrote:
I am rather put off that they recently changed the upgrade paths to Komplete to be just from Komplete.

I own Absynth 4, Battery 3, Reaktor 5... and I'm forever stuck in this loop: I'd like to upgrade those to the latest versions, but if I do, I'm just throwing money away if I ever buy Komplete. But Komplete always hovers at a price where I'm just not sure I'd actually use it enough to make it worth my money. I want to play with Massive and FM8, but again, there's financial disincentive to piecemeal my NI collection. So I end up using other company's products.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯


Update Reaktor. You're done.
Jamnuska
I am put off that Reaktor6 never seems to go on sale (or I keep missing the sale).
jbuonacc
Jamnuska wrote:
I am put off that Reaktor6 never seems to go on sale (or I keep missing the sale).


they did their yearly (??) 50%-off sale at least six months ago, i think? it was $99 during that. even $200 isn't bad, it used to be more than twice that price (i think i paid at least $500 for it 10+ years ago, it was down to $400 before R6 was released).

if you're upgrading, there was just a 50%-off sale on upgrades last month. i think it was $49 to upgrade from an earlier version.
Jamnuska
Yeah I have nothing so full price. And I have a crappy currency so $250 for me...

Will have to wait for that yearly sale.
mt3
$49 last month.
Jamnuska
mt3 wrote:
$49 last month.


wtf?

Wasn't that an upgrade price?
rod_zero
Reaktor can no longer be crossgraded to Komplete, this was rmeoved about 1.5 years ago.

Individual instruments go on sale (50% off) in black friday.
They always have a summer sale on Updates/crossgrades/upgrades.
They also have sales on spring, mostly related to traktor but sometimes updates also.
mt3
Jamnuska wrote:
mt3 wrote:
$49 last month.


wtf?

Wasn't that an upgrade price?


Yes. Was confirming previous post but lacked clarity.
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