Parallels between propellerhead Reason and Korg Gadget.

I've used Reason off and on since version 1 and the same with Korg Gadget.

Yesterday it hit me how the development of Gadget resembles that of Reason:
1. Reason 1 started out as a very closed system with just some sythesizers and drum machines.
Korg Gadget very much the same.
2. In version 2 midi was added to control external gear.
Enter the Tapei midi gadget in Gadget 2.
3. I believe Reason 2.5 introduced Record, a seperate application which allowed for audio recording.
In a later version Record was incorporated in Reason and so audiotracks where introduced in Reason.
Korg added Zurich in an update.
4. For years people have asked Reason to open up and allow the use of VST's.
It resembles the current requests of Gadget users for allowing the use of AUv3's.

I think it's interesting to see both products (from different era's and platforms) travelling a similar path.

Soo...some speculation... a while back we've got the Stockholm gadget which introduced a piece of Reason in Gadget.
What if Korg Gadget will be the platform for propellerhead to enter the ios game?
Propellerhead is a small company, certainly in comparison to Korg, so suppose Korg buys Propellerhead or at
least strengthens the ties between the 2 companies?

what do you think?

Comments

  • Yeah, small company, but they started Reason much earlier than KORG started Gadget. KORG has much more resources and money to create much better product than it is now.

  • edited March 6

    I think the motivations for keeping each system closed has historically been very different. For the Propellorhead's (initially small) team, it was fundamentally a quality control issue. A major benefit to artists of not opening up Reason to VST/AU's was that Reason remained highly DSP optimised. It also had a modular interconnectivity metaphor that had significant advantages over first-generation VST/DAW ecosystems. Korg, on the other hand, is a large corporate, that have a tendency to create 'walled gardens' for their product ranges where lock-in to the Korg ecosystem is an active business strategy.

    However, Korg with Gadget, have ended up with a product with many of the same artist benefits as Reason; the biggest benefit of all is that it's generally very DSP efficient. Certain products in the suite such as Lexington (Odyssei), break that convention (something I'm personally happy with, as Odyssei is one of my favourite virtual instruments on any platform).

    I find it really interesting too that Gadget is built out from it's iPhone core. The UX is fundamentally created for the iPhone form factor, and it shows, there's nothing that can match Gadget on iPhones. I'd argue that this strategy has meant that the iPad and especially iPad Pro experience is badly compromised compared to AUv3 based ecosystems from an artist perspective. However, I would agree that Gadget's simplicity and accessibility are it's biggest strengths. Although I really think they're taking liberties pricing their desktop product at $299 considering it has no benefits over the iPhone product (at least the Windows plugin suite is more reasonably priced). It feels like a little more than a gateway tax. The accuracy of that last statement is born out by the fact that Korg now makes plugin versions of their Gadgets available for both Mac and PC, which is pretty much an admittance that Gadget doesn't compete with the established desktop DAW competition.

    I love Gadget as a mobile sketchpad. But iOS audio has developed as an open collaborative ecosystem of apps where the artist is able to build a bespoke collection of instruments and tools that best suit their creative goals. I have a feeling that Korg will be dragged into the world of AUv3's, as the commercial benefits will outweigh the control motivation that currently directs their approach, as to whether they end up offering AUv3 hosting in Gadget, that's another question entirely.

  • edited March 6

    There are definitely parallels.

    Reason and Gadget are both apps that can make amazing sounds with lots of interesting gizmos, hamstrung by sequencers that are no match for the best DAWs. Or any DAW come to that ;-)

    I would definitely not want to host auv3s in Gadget. I would want it the other way round, having auv3 versions of the Gadgets I could host in a decent DAW. :wink:

    I was on the Beta of Reason before it was initially released. The Propellerheads sent me a full version of Reason after the Beta. I still have a very soft spot for them, but my use of Reason wained over the years. As nice as the sound generating parts are, the sequencer always let it down. I used to ReWire it into Logic, but that caused a lot of frustrations especially when you came back to a project a year or so later and it didn't work anymore for some reason (no pun intended).

    My priority was always to have the sequencer as the hub of everything. I chose the best sequencer for me and everything else has to fit in with that. Which is the opposite way of thinking to Gadget and Reason.

    They're both great if they fit with how you want to work though.

  • @klownshed @jonmoore interesting thoughts...the gadgets as auv3 plugins...I didn't think of that. Seems like a logical route for Korg.

  • edited March 6

    If this was the case, I would hope the thinking would be more forward. The ultimate walled garden in music for computer music creation has always been Reason. Korg should have noticed by now, progress has moved them out of this garden. As an artist flexibility is prime real estate in my work environment. The moment i hit a wall...that stutters my efficiency of doing a seemingly simple task; i immediately try to get on without the struggle.

    I’m personally tired of ‘limited’ current tech. Although many things move forward, it always seems as though greed keeps the dragging of feet a situation. For instance, why would you make a closed system in todays day and age other than being financially controlling? You surely dont believe users of gadgets are not going to buy other apps, machines, software?

    People enjoy new stuff, i like how consumers will continously buy more and more korg romplers for instance...its easier to sell a 10th skinned drum module with another sound set and maybe one gimmicky feature...laughing out loud. Wtf?!

    The problem is (my opinion) Gadget is not ableton as far as clip launching goes (:<) gadget is not reason as far as interconnectivity goes (:<) and other than the terrible sequencer in reason compact, gadget grabs second place to me for the most terrible sequencer on ios...kinda like the audio track zurich which is just a scratchpad audio track that can never be taken seriously.

    There comes a time when you have to compare yourself to something in your league as an app developer. What could audio apps compare themselves to, you may ask? Easy...garageband. Garageband is free, i feel if your product isnt on this level at least then... “what the hell are you doing?”

    If it doesnt plug into the free garageband, or at least go head to head with it, or add a very important new function...why why why?

    What we need is more virtual analogue subtractive synths, and two parameter au effects...hahahhaa NOT

    In a world where you literaliy could have it all, they keep saying “you cant have it all”! Thats my two cents, and thats what its prolly worth.

  • Korg should either allow us to host AU or make their synths AU. I'm actually fine either way. Taipei makes me think they might lean towards hosting AU than releasing their "racks" as AU. How Reason of them.

  • Parallel - automate all the things :p

  • @Andrik said:
    What if Korg Gadget will be the platform for propellerhead to enter the ios game?
    what do you think?

    Props have been on iOS for a long while...... initially with Rebirth (until Roland made them take it down) and Figure, and now with Thor and Reason Compact. They don't need Korg.

    Korg had an advantage over the other DAW developers with iOS....they didn't have a desktop based DAW that a cheaper iOS version would take business away from unlike Propellerheads, Steinberg, Native Instruments, Akai, Apple, Image-Line and Ableton
    This means that any 'crippling' in Gadget is not due to protecting existing Desktop business.....
    Synths on the other hand is a different thing entirely, but Korg were one of the first hardware synth manufacturers to make their own VST's with the Legacy Collection, so protecting existing business does not seem to be their game.

    My guess is that they will not bring down the Gadget walls and allow potentially buggy AUv3's to create a mass of Gadget user support requests (very much like Props and Reason). Making the Gadgets as AUv3's makes more sense from this POV, and they already made them Desktop AU and VST, here's to hoping but not expecting !

  • I'm spending the majority of my music making time with Reason these days. I wish that I had found it years ago because it really works for me. I'm not a big vst user as most everything that I need at the moment is either in RE form or in the included instruments and effects. It has been rock solid and a complete joy to work in. Limitations? Absolutely. But I've put those aside to get to the music.

    I think that Props are a pretty small company. Small companies need to make decisions of what they will offer, what they can support and in this case, what they can code given their resources. I'll bet Korg is in the same boat in a way, as larger companies often put budget restraints on all of their departments to control cost. No company can offer unlimited features and has unlimited resources. At least not for long.

    I don't care about more features to Reason except those to the core of the product, and that is the same with Gadget (though I've largely moved on). Make it as efficient as possible with today's standards of computing. However, even that doesn't matter much to me as I'm not much of a guy to stay current with anything. If it works for me I'll just use it, for the most part.

  • Now that we are on to them, the should gadgetize Europa / reason compact

  • Europa would be great on iOS. A lot of synthesis power, whilst remaining pretty efficient on the DSP side of things. I'd far rather it as an AUv3 but if it had a gadetised version too I wouldn't complain. ;)

  • @jonmoore said:
    Europa would be great on iOS. A lot of synthesis power, whilst remaining pretty efficient on the DSP side of things. I'd far rather it as an AUv3 but if it had a gadetised version too I wouldn't complain. ;)

    it's available for iOS, but it's about 3/4 as powerful

  • @AndyPlankton said:

    My guess is that they will not bring down the Gadget walls and allow potentially buggy AUv3's to create a mass of Gadget user support requests (very much like Props and Reason). Making the Gadgets as AUv3's makes more sense from this POV, and they already made them Desktop AU and VST, here's to hoping but not expecting !

    Definitely, plus they'd get increased revenue by selling the Gadgets again as AU's.

  • @reasOne said:

    @jonmoore said:
    Europa would be great on iOS. A lot of synthesis power, whilst remaining pretty efficient on the DSP side of things. I'd far rather it as an AUv3 but if it had a gadetised version too I wouldn't complain. ;)

    it's available for iOS, but it's about 3/4 as powerful

    T> @reasOne said:

    @jonmoore said:
    Europa would be great on iOS. A lot of synthesis power, whilst remaining pretty efficient on the DSP side of things. I'd far rather it as an AUv3 but if it had a gadetised version too I wouldn't complain. ;)

    it's available for iOS, but it's about 3/4 as powerful

    Must be a regional limitation. Here in the UK you only get Thor (which was originally added way back with Reason 4 on the desktop) and Reason Compact offered as iPad apps by Propellerhead.

  • @jonmoore said:

    Must be a regional limitation. Here in the UK you only get Thor (which was originally added way back with Reason 4 on the desktop) and Reason Compact offered as iPad apps by Propellerhead.

    Reason Compact is Europa !

  • @AndyPlankton said:

    @jonmoore said:

    Must be a regional limitation. Here in the UK you only get Thor (which was originally added way back with Reason 4 on the desktop) and Reason Compact offered as iPad apps by Propellerhead.

    Reason Compact is Europa !

    Why can't they just call it Europa; bleedin' Swedish shenanigans! ;)

  • @jonmoore said:

    @reasOne said:

    @jonmoore said:
    Europa would be great on iOS. A lot of synthesis power, whilst remaining pretty efficient on the DSP side of things. I'd far rather it as an AUv3 but if it had a gadetised version too I wouldn't complain. ;)

    it's available for iOS, but it's about 3/4 as powerful

    T> @reasOne said:

    @jonmoore said:
    Europa would be great on iOS. A lot of synthesis power, whilst remaining pretty efficient on the DSP side of things. I'd far rather it as an AUv3 but if it had a gadetised version too I wouldn't complain. ;)

    it's available for iOS, but it's about 3/4 as powerful

    Must be a regional limitation. Here in the UK you only get Thor (which was originally added way back with Reason 4 on the desktop) and Reason Compact offered as iPad apps by Propellerhead.

    Compact is Europa , 🎧🎶

  • @jonmoore said:

    @AndyPlankton said:

    @jonmoore said:

    Must be a regional limitation. Here in the UK you only get Thor (which was originally added way back with Reason 4 on the desktop) and Reason Compact offered as iPad apps by Propellerhead.

    Reason Compact is Europa !

    Why can't they just call it Europa; bleedin' Swedish shenanigans! ;)

    Hahaha

  • Reading up on it now it appears the Props have far greater plans for Reason Compact than 'Europa Slim'. The announcement feels far more like a very early move into Gadget territory.

    "The first version of Reason Compact features a slimmed down version of the Europa Shapeshifting Synthesizer from Reason 10. Reason Compact will be developed further to contain more tracks and instruments - including drums - so this is just a beginning."

    Music Radar Oct 2018 news article.

  • At least you can now export from Europa Compact (what it should be called) to Europa VST.

  • @jonmoore said:
    Reading up on it now it appears the Props have far greater plans for Reason Compact than 'Europa Slim'. The announcement feels far more like a very early move into Gadget territory.

    "The first version of Reason Compact features a slimmed down version of the Europa Shapeshifting Synthesizer from Reason 10. Reason Compact will be developed further to contain more tracks and instruments - including drums - so this is just a beginning."

    Music Radar Oct 2018 news article.

    Yeah, I've been keeping a quiet eye on Compact...waiting for multi-tracks to appear.

  • Funnily enough, I remember now why I ignored it at launch. I can't stand developers that release free apps to capture email addresses and sell IAP's. Just be open and transparent, rather than marketing via gateway drugs.

  • BTW I didn't mean that last comment that to sound bitter. I've followed Propellerhead since the earliest days of Recycle and Rebirth and have always had a soft spot for their idiosyncratic ways. But in recent years their approach to marketing has left a sour note; one that interferes with my admiration for their engineering team.

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