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My Best/Worst Purchases

Posted: Fri Jun 30, 2017 4:53 pm
by Shift Gorden
Hey guys,

Thought I'd start a fun post about music-related purchase regrets.

What hardware/software/gadgetry have you purchased and now regret? And the same for the flipside - what purchases do you constantly load up/look at and say "ohh yeah, you da man" while winking a them?

I'm a sucker for plugins - about 60% of what I buy I hardly use...

- Native Instruments - Flesh - the video made it look so cool, but the reality was so underwhelming
- Apogee Duet - used to love it...but after buying a Focusrite 18i20 for half the price I now wish I never had the Apogee. It doesn't even freaking have MIDI!
- Slate Digital subscription - I bought the year subscription - after 2 months I realized a) I don't own these things so why do I want to keep using them, and b) I much prefer other plugs I own
- 2016 MBP, top of the line - expensive crashy piece of crap.

What I love:

- Serum - so easy and awesome to use
- My Prophet 6 Desktop - so, so sexy to look at and use.
- Crazy deals: I've got some crazy crazy deals over the last year - all for a fraction of the full price: Izotope Ozone Advanced (that tape saturator is magnificent), Izotope Neutron Advanced, FabFilter everything.
- Plugin Alliance Vertigo VSC2 Compressor - so hawt
- Plugin Alliance Lindell PEX 500 EQ - kinda like a Pultec style EQ - I always use this sucker. Love. Love. Love.

You guys?

Re: My Best/Worst Purchases

Posted: Fri Jun 30, 2017 5:36 pm
by Stromkraft
Best Purchases:
  • Waves Element 2, because it sounds so freaking good.
  • Softube Heartbeat. It's like the drum machine Roland never made. Unfortunately Softube persists in using Gobbler, so no more products from them.
  • Eareckon EAReverb. It's so natural you don't hear it was there until you take it away.
  • Madrona Labs Aalto. I can loose hours just playing around with this and not feeling I wasted any time either.
  • Waves V-EQ3. I get to the sound I want in under a minute
  • Dub Machines (MFL), with Magnetic and Diffuse that are so unique and well sounding it's ridiculous. Unfortunately, the plug-in versions, while really good, don't really compare.
  • Ableton Push (Original). It's so versatile and revolutionized my use of Live.
  • Frontier Design Alphatrack, motorized fader. Wonderful for fader rides and track control. Amazingly can be made to work excellently in macOS 10.12 years after the latest driver was released (Hello Native Instruments!).
  • RME Babyface, the original version is simply the best sounding audio interface I've encountered outside Metric Halo and expensive stuff like that. I got one several years ago when I had massive stability issues for a long period, paid my last money for one, and all issues disappeared at first try. And the sound. :mrgreen:
    For a minute I recently contemplated selling this to get the newer version, but no, I'm keeping this one.

  • Audified STA Delay. It doesn't really add anything truly useful. OK, I got it free so what am I whining about?
  • Waves Debreath. Not that it's bad at all, but I really don't need it. Good to have for when in the future I do I suppose.
  • Cheap Native Instruments audio interfaces. I just had some performance issues with an S2 just the other week. I don't like NI's hardware when it comes to stability. Maybe as controllers. Not for audio before macOS 10.12.
  • A cheap head phone audio cable, I got in a Hifi shop when the cats ate my two (!) originals. It didn't fit well and got loose time an time again and broke down in a year. I paid good money for my XLR speaker cables that I use with the Babyface., I think I rather spend next time for head phone cable quality.

Re: My Best/Worst Purchases

Posted: Fri Jun 30, 2017 5:42 pm
by S4racen
Did those get mixed up??


Re: My Best/Worst Purchases

Posted: Fri Jun 30, 2017 5:48 pm
by Stromkraft
S4racen wrote:Did those get mixed up??
Yes! The hardware made the wrong list. Cheers!

Re: My Best/Worst Purchases

Posted: Fri Jun 30, 2017 5:57 pm
by downfader
I think I can list my worst purchases as Waves pluggins... nothing about the software itself. Its due to the old PC HDD dying and Waves not allowing me to transfer the purchase over to the new PC despite me only having the pluggins for a week or so.

Best purchase. Novation BS2. Soulsby Atmegatron too. Both completely different, but raw and heavy as hell when you need it. :P

Re: My Best/Worst Purchases

Posted: Fri Jun 30, 2017 9:37 pm
by Stromkraft
downfader wrote:I think I can list my worst purchases as Waves pluggins... nothing about the software itself. Its due to the old PC HDD dying and Waves not allowing me to transfer the purchase over to the new PC despite me only having the pluggins for a week or so.
This actually does not sound right. First of all, Waves licenses are tied to the computer or any disk connected via USB. Assuming you aren't using USB If you replace the disk on the old PC and boot from that, install and log into Waves Central you should be able to transfer the licenses to the cloud.

Secondly, You should be able to do a reset a limited amount of times when these things happen. Did you talk to support?

PM me if you want some fellow user support.

Re: My Best/Worst Purchases

Posted: Fri Jun 30, 2017 11:56 pm
by Tarekith

- My Taylor 814ce. Perfectly built so it covers the OCD in me, and so nice to make music without electronics involved sometimes.
- Novation Circuit. Damn this thing is fun and constantly surprising me with what it can do.
- Lynx Hilo. Always works, totally transparent, just brainless good sound quality no matter what you do.
- Shure SE846's IEMs. Completely changed my perspective on how good "headphones" can be.


- 95% of the iOS music apps I bought, I seem to gravitate to the same 3 or 4 anyway.
- The new Korg Electribe. I wanted to love it, I really did. But I've yet to make anything substantial on it, and I doubt I will.
- M-Audio Trigger Finger. I think I used it maybe once before realizing I'm no finger drummer.

Re: My Best/Worst Purchases

Posted: Sat Jul 01, 2017 1:30 am
by jestermgee
I don't have too many regretful purchases mainly because i'm not much of an impulse buyer, I agonise over reviews and specs and take a while to make a decision so almost everything I own is what I have wanted.


- Komplete Kontrol S61! Best keyboard I have used and more useful to me than Push even with the shortcomings.
- Mackie MCU. Its so useful and delightful to use and has been solid for 10 years (though have had to make general repairs to a fader and the LCD)
- Mackie 1402 Mixer. It's the heart of my analogue paths and rock solid for a decade.
- Push 2. It's very useful though I don't use it much for what it is designed for, more as a quick controller for racks and drum patterns
- Omnisphere 2. It's one of my most used VSTs and my go to when I need to get started on something
- Bomes MIDI Translator. It's just one of the best tools I have for translating anything I want between MIDI and anything.
- Numark NS7III. Not used in my studio but for my mobile DJ work and I love it. So much fun and runs super stable.


- Roland OctaCapture. It's a "good" interface that has all the features I want but it's not as reliable as my old Presonus FireBox but I had to upgrade when I installed Win10. Sometimes isn't available to the OS and when Live crashes it locks up requiring a complete OS reboot.
- Presonus Comp16. Crappy mono compressor I bought quickly because I needed to record vocals. Did the trick but have never used it again.
- Sample Packs. I have purchased various sample packs of loops and have always been disappointed. Only ones I have found useful would be drum loops
for layering and sampled drum kits... Base, Piano loops etc are always just too limiting and I gave up on sample packs a long time ago.
- Skytech Amps. Purchased some really cheap 4000w amps for my mobile DJ work as a quick solution and they were horrible (noisy and distorted at low volume) and weighed 25kg each. Returned them and got Behringer iNuke 6000w which were awesome (3x the cost but well worth it).
- Odesi. No idea why I purchased it and have never used it beyond trying to use it. This is the one regretful piece of software I purchased

Re: My Best/Worst Purchases

Posted: Sat Jul 01, 2017 5:46 pm
by ObtuseMoose
- U-He Diva: I can't seem to get a bad sound out of it, so inspiring.
- U-He Zebra: I don't care for the UI, but it's SO versatile and can sound great (and is less CPU hungry than Diva.)
- Arturia KeyStep: The keyboard I grab most often for quick sessions with both software and hardware synths. Would be better with full sized keys, but I can tolerate the minis.

- U-He Bazille: The anti-Diva. I can't seem to get a good sound out of it. (Of course, "good" is subjective...)
- Yamaha QY100: A compact groove-box-ish GM synth & sequencer. I was young(er) and foolish(er)...
- M-Audio AxiomPro49 controller: The hardware is OK, but customizing the functionality of the controls is a nightmare.


Re: My Best/Worst Purchases

Posted: Mon Jul 03, 2017 12:13 am
by channelite
Bitwig 2 upgrade
Yeah I know this is the Ableton forum and I've been a user since Live 6, but Bitwig 2 really has a lot of great features and I have to say, it was money well spent!

DSI Tempest
I like the Tempest, but it requires a lot of work to organize the sound that I like. I only started recording it this year after owning it since 2013. It has grown on me, but I've never had a piece of gear that I've debating selling and keeping so many times. Though, since owning it, I now fully understand subtractive synthesis which is cool.

Re: My Best/Worst Purchases

Posted: Mon Jul 03, 2017 1:40 am
by login
U-he Diva
Moog Minitaur
Fireface UC
Addictive drums

Waldorf Largo (bugs and no mapping)
Elektron Machinedrum (not bad but I couldn't get with it)
Nord lead 3, great UI but I didn't like the sound and never did it to a song.

Re: My Best/Worst Purchases

Posted: Tue Jul 04, 2017 9:21 am
by stoersignal
Ableton Live
Eve SC208 Speakers
moog sub 37
DSI prophet12
elektron rytm
all u-he plugins

SSL Nucleus (almost 4000€ and since i made a recommended firmwareupgrade it just don`t boot anymore. ssl wants another 1000 for repair, regardless that this happened 1 month after the warranty ended +the bundled
SSL plugins need to be authorized again and again because the always seem to forget my registration. it`s just embarrasing, especially for company with a reputation like SSL )
UAD2 PCI: Yes, the plugins sound nice, of course, but when you look at the price-performance-ratio it`s simply not worth it, especially nowadays as there are so many good plugins and the computers are so strong

Re: My Best/Worst Purchases

Posted: Tue Jul 04, 2017 1:16 pm
by Bionecteur
Best :

Eurorack ( the list of moduls too long) ; but let me choose the Expert Sleepers ES3/6, because of the great integration with Ableton
Abstrakt Audio Avalon ( my need for a 303 is over)
O coast ( crazy half modular machine)
Strymon Pedals Big Sky and Timeline ( yeah)

Omnisphere and Diva


A Roland Cube Amp for my Bass ( don´t like the Sound of it)

Re: My Best/Worst Purchases

Posted: Tue Jul 04, 2017 6:42 pm
by gesaffelstein_01
Best: Waves Alchemy Revolution. Had it for a couple days. Way better sound and feel compared to impulse and drum rack.

Worst:none really

Re: My Best/Worst Purchases

Posted: Thu Jul 06, 2017 3:46 pm
by lapieuvre

Ableton Live
U-He Diva
The Hammersmith Piano
iZotope Ozone
Hofa Iq-Eq
Fireface 800 (Bought it in 2009, just amazing)

new Korg Electribe (I just don't use it)
UA Apollo Twin (People told me the software preamps would sound as good as my hardware preamps... false)
MBP 2015 top of the line: Too expensive, crappy video card.
All my ipad music apps, I never use them