Quality of Life changes on the software (maybe the hardware too?)
ToneCloud. Please make this a consistent experience, and automatically log in if login is required. Also a sync function or the ability to import export entire banks would be nice. Also Automatically defaulting to the preset names if this is a stored preset
GUI control Basics. Please let us have several functions for predictability, repeatability and speed: Direct entry of parameters if desired, fine tuning of knobs and faders, some way to get back to unity gain or 0 (depending on the parameter) and some way to get back to preset default. An ability to see the ACTUAL parameter values at any time they are requested
Sorting/Parsing. Please let us have folders and/or subfolders and easily let us move amps, pedals and FX into them and sort them as needed. Also, hopefully a way to default back to the last folder when reopening the add or chose function
The long part:
I would love to see quality of life improvements to the functionality of the GUI. We are in an amazingly weird place, where the software itself is so incredibly powerful, but the user interface to control it, is not capable of the precision, convenience and repeatability to really get the most out of it.
Contrast this with 99% of the software out there, where the GUI looks pretty, functions well, but controls software that for all intents and purposes is for entertainment purposes only. And that's not to say that Bias stuff doesn't look pretty either, I think it looks beautiful, but controlling it is a whole nother ball of worms.
I had a firm belief when working on REAPER, that the ease and predictability with which one could execute a function would lead to better sounding recordings and mixes. Speed is one part, I believe that velocity matters: the time between an artist having an idea and the time it takes before you can actually hit record can have a HUGE impact on the sound (yes the actual finished sound) of a recording. With that in mind, I stash headphone boxes and snakes all around my recording rooms and keep recording templates set up so it is only a matter of a very few button presses before I can capture something. Maybe not 100% the ideal mic placement or whatever, but the velocity at which I can capture and not have the artis waiting around for it I believe makes up for that and then some. You may notice there's only one Mouse Tool in REAPER....Same reason. Get to anything from anywhere at any time.
I know, beyond even an inkling of doubt that there are many many many many experiments or settings I have not attempted in Bias products because of the inconvenience in doing so. Off the top of my head, a big one, is changes to the Amp settings inside Amp that I may want to see in FX. The iPad is far too finnicky for this for me, so it needs to be Desktop, which means logging out of some apps and logging in to others, then reversing the process. Pain.
So I think a few changes that could really help would be something along the lines of:
- ToneCloud. Please make this a consistent experience, and automatically log in if login is required. Also a sync function or the ability to import export entire banks would be nice. Also Automatically defaulting to the preset names if this is a stored preset
You never know if ToneCloud is actually going to work, you may need to log out then back in. Logging into some apps means you are logged out of others.
- GUI control Basics. Please let us have several functions for predictability, repeatability and speed: Direct entry of parameters if desired, fine tuning of knobs and faders, some way to get back to unity gain or 0 (depending on the parameter) and some way to get back to preset default. An ability to see the ACTUAL parameter values at any time they are requested
For instance, probably the most scary and painful part of all of this are the input and output levels of the app itself. This can have terrifying consequences, which can snowball if changes are made when one is set slightly different than the last time, resulting in banks of presets that are no longer set correctly. Threshold based fx like gates and compressors are completely toast when these parameters are changed unknowingly, to say nothing of the sound of amplifier gains. Not being able to see what values a parameter currently has can also lead to nightmares of second guessing. The quick slot thing can help with this, but often, for the sake of real repatability and prediction, actually knowing what value exists right now is absolutely essential information.
- Sorting/Parsing. Please let us have folders and/or subfolders and easily let us move amps, pedals and FX into them and sort them as needed. Also, hopefully a way to default back to the last folder when reopening the add or chose function
Bias Amp, Bias FX and Bias Pedal, incredibly, often lead one to do a lot of experimenting which results in a lot of user created elements. It almost instantly becomes overwhelming to find the one you are looking for. And they seem to be placed in some undefined order, so you don't even know where to look. Right now, it seems to default to a root category as well upon adding or chosing, which can be a pain. If I'm in Bias FX, and I want to pick an amp I made in Bias Amp, I need to replace the amp, then chose bias amps, then try and find the one I'm looking for. If I decide that wasn't the one I wanted, I replace again, and chose Bias Amps again. It sounds small, but small walls to progress like this can snowball into frustration and a lot of unexplored and possibly bountiful avenues
Just replying to add a few things about making ToneCloud a consistant experience (instead of starting another topic ).
As it is right now, ToneCloud lacks a lot of refinement in the way you can search for things (basically a search box and you're done). Adding a few things would make for a better searching experience that might in result in more people wanting to buy a Positive Grid product.
- Search by combination of components
If you have one Amp/Pedal/Cab/IR you really like, it's one of the best ways to find that particular signal chains and all the user presets existing on the cloud to see just how good sounding and/or versatile that component actually is.
This would allow for an easier search and you could have your Business Intelligence detecting trends (which means opportunities for new products to come out on your side that). It would also be quite selling to know that you can search and get exactly that "perfect tone you're looking for".
- Suggests and show nearly-identicals preset (with % meter for how close they are)
It's the worst experience to get a preset from the cloud and discover that it's exactly the same settings than a previous preset you downloaded.
By doing that, it would allow to make some clarity on which preset are of the same type and which are actually a real variation. Users could use it as a search filter.
It should be fairly easy to prototype (fine tuning cloud require some time though) and it would be another way to detect trends. Same as above point, it could become a real selling feature to know that can your search for something completely opposite to what you usually go for and "brighten you perspective" that way.
- Show popularity of a component - give the users their recognition
Some guys on the cloud takes a lot of time to make matched amps/pedal presets and should be rewarded for it.
While showing the number of favorites and downloads is an "ok" metric, adding another metric such as the number of BiasFX presets using the said component would actually reflect the worth of the said component (not all the users take the time to add a preset as favorite, and a download doesn't mean that the preset is actually used by the community).
Adding this metric could have an impact on Bias Amp and Bias Pedal sales.
"Wow this distortion pedal that guy made is on a ton of presets i like to use, maybe i should check his stuff on Bias Pedal ?
I only have the demo but maybe it's worth getting it just so i could grab the stuff he makes"
And that is all, but that's already some features that would make ToneCloud a completely different experience for the users.
Thank your for your time reading this, hope you'll give us some feedbacks as to what's to come in the future for ToneCloud.
Yeah, tonecloud searching really needs improvement.
An advanced search with more filters:
Search by 'user'
Search by genre/tags
Search by Classification for Bias Amp (i.e. Crunch, Insane, etc)
For duplicates, I know I have uploaded duplicates of others tones to facilitate transfer from my desktop to iOS. Private uploads will help and any other 'personal' library management features (ie. send bank to iPad).
It would be really cool if the system told you on upload if your preset was a duplicate of a system already in the TC.