Is analog modeling pirating?

Discussion in 'Lounge' started by PopstarKiller, Aug 22, 2017.

  1. PopstarKiller

    PopstarKiller Platinum Record

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    We hear all the time about how people are getting copies of software without paying, and how it's stealing, and that it doesn't matter that you don't actually take any physical property from the developer, because when you buy the software you are paying for its development, not the cost of physically manufacturing something.

    But what about developers who hardly do anything more than copy, themselves? There are so many companies nowadays that offer plugins which emulate hardware, and they are extremely successful – those are some of the most desired and costly plugins. The software companies basically exploit the reputation and popularity of the devices that they copy, and they PRIDE themselves on how closely it resembles the original, and how they actually went and copied the entire signal path! If those developers were to simply create a simple Compression plugin of their own, they would likely get very little attention - but say that it's based on a hardware device, and it's instant success!

    So those "developers" essentially steal the work of other people, all the hours those people put into engineering a product and marketing it, and claim that it is their product. To me, this doesn't seem so different from pirating. In fact, it's even worse, because they actually SELL those products that they stole, and no, the majority of them don't pay any royalty to the companies that made the original product. Those "perfect emulations" devalue the original product. If R2R were to basically copy the code and GUI of Waves plugins, and call it "an emulation of Waves plugins", there won't be much difference.

    You now have companies like Slate Digital and Liquidsonics who sell "reverb plugins", that just house captured patches from hardware reverb devices – they don't even go to the trouble of recreating them! They literally just record them and sell them as their own. How is that different from ripping music from a CD and selling it as your own?

    And then they turn around and accuse people of stealing their "hard work".

    Your thoughts?
     
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  3. jhn

    jhn Ultrasonic

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    idk but it's takes alot more work than clicking download, it sounds like your trying to justify pirating like "it's ok to steal from a thief"
     
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  4. TW

    TW Guest

    If it is so easy to make really great plugins and money with plugins, why dont you start a plugin company and get rich?

    :rofl:
     
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  5. PopstarKiller

    PopstarKiller Platinum Record

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    Tell that to R2R and all those groups who put so much time into cracking software.
     
  6. Herr Durr

    Herr Durr Guest

    there is more to it than you are supposing... for example.. Roland stopped UAD from selling a plugin version of the RE-201
    maybe it was about greed.. but it wasn't about stealing them.. now some devs may walk the line and emulate hardware..
    then call it something else...but they could still be sued for licensing fees anyway if it's substantially similar
    to an available hardware product..

    https://help.uaudio.com/hc/en-us/ar...ed-plug-ins-no-longer-available-for-purchase-
     
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  7. One company that has made an art form of it and might just be still doing it today is a little known company called Behringer, albeit in the world of hardware. If Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, then these guys are the genuine deal.
     
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  8. foster911

    foster911 Guest

    Piracy is an outmoded term. In the detonation of information era, that word is totally senseless.:yes:
     
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  9. twoheart

    twoheart Audiosexual

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    I think you are right @PopstarKiller It is kind of stealing copying the sound of a hardware device.
    And Herr Durr's post proves it.
    There may be more than one layer of protection: Patents, copyright, trademarks. Complicated stuff.
    It's not easy to comply to all those rules, so in some cases even big company with lots of lawyers will fail to do so.

    But that doesn't mean, we are allowed to crack the copyright infringers plugin. ;)

    You know it's like in the world of business: If you steal a small amaount of money or goods, you'll go to jail, but when you steal GIANT amounts of money you become 'system relevant' (remember banking crisis 2008), too big to fail.
     
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2017
  10. Impressive

    Impressive Guest

    Some developers obtain permission to do that stuff... they clear it with the company first. UAD can't use the names "Marshall", "Moog", "Studer","Korg", "Fender", "Lexicon", etc, in their products if they didn't obtain permission first.
    It's not piracy. I would only call it piracy if it was a product in the same form... for instance, physical analog product copied as another physical analog product. In this case, it is a virtual solution to a physical product. It's no more or less piracy than vibrators are to the male genitalia. Some people prefer the digital solution so they don't have to pay top dollar for the real thing, and it's more portable. Would you rather pay $9,000+ for a Roland Jupiter 8 just so you can haul this giant keyboard around, or would you rather pay $200 for a VST version of it and carry a laptop and a small midi keyboard around? We live in the digital era and just about everything is done on a phone or a computer now, and a lot of these companies don't have the time to invest in digital solutions to their products, so they let someone else do it. But in all fairness, the digital solutions don't replace the physical things any more than a pocket pussy replaces actual pussy... it's just more convenient for the people who don't have the financial and mental health requirements to own the real thing. :mates:

    But that's just my opinion. Nothing other. :chilling:
     
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  11. twoheart

    twoheart Audiosexual

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    He didn't say it's easy.
    It's, as well, not easy to fake a painting like Mona Lisa and sell it as the original. Nevertheless this would be a crime.


    P.S.:OK, not the best analogy, I'm too lazy today ;)
     
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2017
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  12. Herr Durr

    Herr Durr Guest

    @twoheart maybe I was not clear... UAD did not steal anything by emulating Boss and Roland hardware..

    they were paying licensing fees for that.. there was an agreement... if there was no contract between them
    UAD could be liable for huge damages.. even using the exact names of the hardware they emulated...

    Roland even went after a crappy old vst of the Juno called Flintlock... and shut the guy down totally
    being a smaller developer he probably didn't bother asking permission..and did not have the money to pay
    a licensing fee anyway.... UAD... quite a different story..

    you're killing me here man... :rofl:
     
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  13. tulamide

    tulamide Audiosexual

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    If China does a cheap but blatant copy of Nike shoes, it is indeed called piracy. The same is true for software versions of hardware synths. There probably are dozens of patents on the hardware, so recreating the hardware parts without permission is piracy. Most companies don't get harsh, because it is mostly the emulation of hardware they don't sell anymore and don't expect to be a significant money factor. However, lately the Roland devices from the eighties became so popular, that Roland now wants to make its own money with it. Even Propellerhead's RB-338 has no future, because of Rolands own cloud series.

    It is up to the companies and patent holders to claim their share, and if they see a bigger market, they do.

    The difference to R2R, btw., is that they never claim to be the producers of the copies they crack.
     
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  14. twoheart

    twoheart Audiosexual

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    You are right, I didn't get it. But now...:wink:
     
  15. twoheart

    twoheart Audiosexual

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    Totally agree, it was the first thing I thought about, when the name Roland was menitioned in this thread.
    So we should all load it down for free ... it won't last long
     
  16. junh1024

    junh1024 Rock Star

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    It depenz on approach

    Low effort
    Let's take 4 xample, a simple IIR EQ. The filter is digital, but it manages to have, by coincidence, some of the quirks of analogue hardware, like phase shifts, etc. 5 lines per filter. Copy codes from the internet. AND THEN YOU PUT A VINTAGE GUI ON IT and $ell it for many munnies!!!

    Or, take $EXPENSIVE_HARDWARE_BOX and just capture the IR. And make a plug that just applies the IR.

    I despise these low-effort things. You pay the munnies (&/ the CPU hit)

    otoh

    High-effort
    vendors like pianoteq & samplemodelling who take the effort into faithful, effortful recreations of the originals. I approve.
     
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  17. muaB

    muaB Producer

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    what people are thinking about these days, its incredible... stupid and smart at the same time. i bet you study philosophy. 10 bucks?

    if i make a clay sculpture of you, am i pirating your body?
     
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  18. Cafenegro

    Cafenegro Member

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    You're confused: all those plugins claiming they are 'emulating' actual hardware are subject to well-established copyright laws that everyone follows. There are lots of rules established in the copyright law field that determine what can and can't be done. Where the 'fraud' takes place is in using people's own greed against them: plugin developers easily separate the fool from his money by telling him he will sound like the Beatles by using the 'Abbey Road Drums' plugin and his terrible singer will sound like a million dollars once the Waves SSL Compressor starts working on the horrendous take.
     
  19. Psychoacoustic

    Psychoacoustic Kapellmeister

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    It's piracy if you claim your software is a Roland emulation without permission. Otherwise, no. :wink:
     
  20. tvandlover

    tvandlover Producer

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    Where do you think the " real " ones are made?
     
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  21. TwinBorther

    TwinBorther Kapellmeister

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    Well, you are wrong. Sorry, but it's simply that; you are wrong.


    This is a good representation of how it is operated on the legal aspect.

    Now, on the software aspect, it's not as short as to say "they just copy the entire signalpath". Depending on the approach taken, there is a shit ton of maths involved in the representation of the physical objects into a digital environment, that often not only require the knowledge of different methods and techniques (that does not fall even short to "easy to do") but also the ingenuity to the development of original models of representations.

    In "simple" plugins that use the methodology of blackboxes (compare the input to the output without knowing what's inside) it takes you throu the process of developing a transfer function that achieves that result by mimicking said behavior; these are -and I'm not even scratching surface with saying this- awefully hard to do

    In plugins that model the hardware by components, you have to have a discreet model that replicates the behavior of said components each by each.

    Even in sampled softwares and IR based softwares you have to have a really well formed understanding of how to manipulate and use said "takes" for it to work... and you have to work out the proper method for said takes to be suitable with the models of utilization you are applying.

    All this is even without taking into consideration performance issues and memory management; correct lumping and representation of physical behaviors in a digital discreet domain, in the while of making it realtime suitable; and a beautiful plethora of thopics to be aware of when developing this things.

    Not for nothing software engineering is an... well... engineering
    And not for nothing Digital Signal Processing is such a vast.... I mean, gigantic... science.
     
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