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Clarification about Liquid Notes 2 and current trends in plug-in software

About a year ago, we started with serious efforts to investigate the possibilities of adding new features to Liquid Notes. Much has happened since this had influenced our decision to change directions and aim for a different strategy.

Here is the full story.


Trends in plug-in software & loop development

In October last year, we announced that a successor of Liquid Notes was on the way. It was labelled as Liquid Notes 2 and included features such as chord generation and advanced reharmonization, all in one tool.

The original post stated that this tool is not final and dependencies on other modules are not confirmed yet. Having looked thoroughly into these, we realized that – while work on these modules had progressed well – integrating them into Liquid Notes led to some major challenges, e.g. continuing development on the existing code base developed in Java would have caused a fair number of problems and equally a significant number of you had voiced their disapproval of installing Java on their machines.
Also, the non-existence of a solution which enables interfacing with the DAW in a manner required by Liquid Notes would leave us with a suboptimal setup of two versions – with neither of them functioning as a real MIDI-plug-in.

Overall, this would hamper the product's sales potential, force customers to buy a solution that does more than required (e.g. when only looking for a chord generator) and leaves us stranded with a code base that isn't a good fit for feature extensions.

This eventually led us to the decision to turn the chord generation feature into a separate plug-in. The logic behind this is that it enables a set of small, versatile plug-ins that can be connected with each other via the host (DAW) using intra-plug-in communication where data is shared. Say, for example, a plug-in for chord generation and an additional one for reharmonization (both based on VST/AU) are working together in sync on the same arrangement. Such a setup creates a “bigger” tool, while at the same time providing much flexibility for the user in that only what is needed is being used or bought.

That this is the right decision seems to be confirmed by the moves made by other developers of plug-ins who have abandoned all-in one solutions in favor of smaller plug-ins. Besides providing more flexibility for the user, it also eases development for us.

Is this the end of Liquid Notes? No, not at all. While for now further development is stopped, we will continue providing customer support. After the launch of I2C8 (chord generator, to be announced soon) we will investigate how the core features of Liquid Notes can be converted into a real MIDI-plug-in.

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