Software Subscriptions

This week I’m debating subscriptions. No not whether to ditch Netflix or sign up to Prime. Software subscriptions. Adobe have proved the model highly successful with Creative Cloud. Although I was skeptical at first, it’s proved a hit and even as a freelancer covering the cost, you get a lot of bang for your buck. This is of course because over the years Adobe have bought up tons of great applications, made them their own (for the most part) and bundled them together. Whether you’re a designer using Illustrator, Photoshop and InDesign or like me using all those along with After Effects, Premiere, Encoder, Audition etc. etc. you get the idea, that monthly fee seems reasonable, especially when that software makes you money. This success it seems hasn’t been lost on Maxon who’ve now announced that Cinema 4D R21 will be subscription based (although you can still buy a standalone non-upgradable perpetual version). They’ve got rid of the different Studio, Broadcast, Visualize framework, which I’ll admit I always felt a bit restricting and it’s now just Cinema 4D, monthly or yearly subscription, with the added choice to include the Red Shift renderer. The thing is though, at between £55-120 a month depending on your choices that’s quite a hit... for one (albeit very powerful) package. True, 3D software has never been cheap and again if you’re making money with it, it pays for itself. This is my issue though, I don’t work in 3D too much, no where near as much as I work in After Effects (and it’s faux 3D), so the annual subscription seems like a pricey commitment. It’s £95 for 1 month, so if a job requires it, perhaps that’s a good call, but all this cuts down on R&D playtime, unless you want to shell out money just to experiment. Maxon always seemed to encourage new users, with the inclusion of C4D Lite in After Effects, but this new model seems to shut that door slightly. The solution of course is more paid 3D work to justify it... and bagging a 3 month trial license might help me out too! On the whole though I remain hopeful that Cinema 4D will continue its rise in the world of 3D, but it will be interesting to see how users will respond. What will be popular? Monthly subscriptions, annual or maybe an increase in Blender users! If you are a C4D fan and can’t get your head around what’s best for you, the guys at Greyscalegorilla have a handy flowchart for you...…/what-version-cinema-4d-buy-s…