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does the DP update give any hope for an updated Unisyn?

Discussion of issues related to MOTU's Sysex Editor/Librarian program.

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Re: does the DP update give any hope for an updated Unisyn?

Postby bayswater » Thu Feb 02, 2012 5:25 pm

pounce wrote:I recognize that this software has a smaller market, but nonetheless hardware synths are still going to be around for the foreseeable future.
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None of know the exact economics of this, nor can I guess how hard it would be to port the code over.
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Not really digging Midiquest and not really sure it's being supported anymore.

It's not just a small market. It's a shrinking market. That's the killer.

Dr T (who developed the original X-oR) said it would cost him about a million to port KCS to the Mac from the Atari (using the same processors). That was a long time ago. If you could still port Unisyn for that amount, you'd have to sell 10,000 copies of an update for 100 a copy, just to cover the development, and probably twice that to document, package, distribute, and support the application. To make it even marginally worth the effort, you'd want well in excess of 50,000 copies sold over three years. Someone might take that on as a labour of love, but no investor would touch it.
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MIDIQuest is available and supported.
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You can take the money you might have spent on Unisyn V3, and spend it on an old laptop Mac that supports screen sharing. Set up a simple MIDI network connection, and have this start up and autostart Unisys. Then control it from one the Spaces on your main Mac.
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Re: does the DP update give any hope for an updated Unisyn?

Postby monkey man » Mon Feb 06, 2012 2:10 am

bayswater wrote:It's OK. Circle on. Linear thinking monkeys are not good.
Doh! I was in "square" mode. Your'e a genius, Baysey.
bayswater wrote:The level of support in the long run is something to consider.
... and this alone would rule me out. Thanks mate.

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Re: does the DP update give any hope for an updated Unisyn?

Postby johnblair495 » Tue Jul 17, 2012 12:40 am

They seem to keep up with the newer synths, and are pretty much the only game in town. It's quite expensive, but there is a discount for Unisyn users.
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Re: does the DP update give any hope for an updated Unisyn?

Postby pounce » Fri Aug 24, 2012 12:01 pm

I am (unfortunately) investigating whether or not to get a used mac to run an old os on so that I can edit my synths with Unisyn. That said, there are a number of synths which I have that this doesn't support, so I still think an updated Unisyn would be helpful to a lot of people, myself very much included. Hardware synths are not dead. Besides, my Blofeld and Mono Evolver deserve to be edited and let me deal with libraries of patches as well as my older stuff.
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Re: does the DP update give any hope for an updated Unisyn?

Postby bonitap » Mon Feb 25, 2013 5:56 pm

I am far behind the timeliness of the discussion; however, I'm compelled to add my 2¢...because I am very invested in Unisyn (literally and figuratively.)

I bought Unisyn (with the sequencing software, FreeStyle) in 1995. I participated in some Beta testing. And I upgraded (even paying for it) until there've been no more after some iteration of Apple OSX.

I loved Unisyn because of its library, voice, search, and creative functions. Over the years I spent hundreds of hours:
…organizing new voices
…learning how they were designed
…making new voices and randomized variations
…defining all of them with searchable keywords and descriptions as well as records of use
…and designing Libraries for specific projects and venues (such as Church)
Not unexpectedly, that's several thousand voices from various keyboards, samples, and QSR (plus several Q cards.)

For my humble studio, Unisyn was vital in communicating among all the hardware of a project. Dare I admit that I also wish FreeStyle (a sequencer) still was supported? MOTU's Digital Performer is more than I require. Yet I purchased DP8 because there's no other option from MOTU — which is the direction I chose to remain loyal to as I developed my gear and software.

I doubt there's anything like Unisyn — or the loyalty for it — because of the satisfaction it provided. I paid for the upgrade to OSX. It was a major letdown when MOTU stopped supporting it as Apple's systems and hardware advance.

If Unisyn actually has met its maker, well, Thanks, MOTU, for something I found to be exceptional, sturdy, and fun.
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Re: does the DP update give any hope for an updated Unisyn?

Postby bayswater » Mon Feb 25, 2013 6:12 pm

Was free style the sequencer that could work out tempo and meter as you were playing with no click ?
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Re: does the DP update give any hope for an updated Unisyn?

Postby cuttime » Mon Feb 25, 2013 6:33 pm

Maybe some of you programmer types can chime in: If Rosetta can compile PPC code for Intel on the fly, how hard could it be to convert the code to Intel on a permanent basis? Is there really more to it than this? Are there legal or copyright ramifications?
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Re: does the DP update give any hope for an updated Unisyn?

Postby bayswater » Mon Feb 25, 2013 8:11 pm

I think it has more to do with basic product lifecycle management. That dictates that you keep the number of products to an amount you can maintain and support, that you invest in new products that are on the growth side of the demand curve, milk the products at the top of the curve, and stop investing in products on the downside of the curve, and preferably get rid of them altogether. Capital is scarce, so if it's available, it has to be spent on the next big thing, not a 20 year old product with no prospects.
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Re: does the DP update give any hope for an updated Unisyn?

Postby bonitap » Sun Mar 03, 2013 4:29 pm

bayswater wrote:Was free style the sequencer that could work out tempo and meter as you were playing with no click ?

Yes, if that's how you configured it. In comparison to what we expect in current sequencers, Freestyle had many options, was powerful, and seemed quite versatile — considering MOTU released it in the early 1990s. And it worked in parallel to Unisyn, of course.

Wow, I get nostalgic for a simpler time. I do not, however, miss FreeMIDI and OMS which allowed the software to talk/work with Apple Macs.

Here's a credit to MOTU: It was good even back then with releasing Profiles of new or updated synths to work in Unisyn, etc. Then FreeStyle lost its life, so to say, once Apple Macs got into the OS X era. I've kept an old Powerbook G3 and G4 just in case I need to start up the old Freestyle or Unisyn...
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Re: does the DP update give any hope for an updated Unisyn?

Postby stubbsonic » Sun Mar 03, 2013 6:50 pm

I have Unisyn, but never really used it much. My main reason was for wanting to organize patch lists and manage a pretty unwieldy Kurzweil library. Never quite got to that OCD-kinda project.
But I still use my Kurzweil's a fair amount.

Still, I have an old G4 and will probably be using it to update a crap-load of Appleworks files-- now that my current RMBP can't open most of them. I also have a UAD-1 card and some plugs that I might pop in there. Makes sense to load Unisyn on there, too, especially since there really isn't another option for patch management.
RMBP (2.6 i7), FF800, DP8, Kontakt, Reaktor, K2661S, K2500RS, iPad4, also have a sawtooth G4 for running a few legacy apps and a UAD-1.
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Re: does the DP update give any hope for an updated Unisyn?

Postby bayswater » Sun Mar 03, 2013 7:53 pm

bonitap wrote:
bayswater wrote:Was free style the sequencer that could work out tempo and meter as you were playing with no click ?

Yes, if that's how you configured it.

I'd pay for an upgrade to that. It nailed a tempo map so much better and simpler than the current crop of modern sequencers.
iMac 27" i7 16G, DP 8.07 & OS 10.8.5, MachFive 3.2.1, 828 Mk3
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