Just rec’d your email re Aeros update

…and for me and many, it’s a big yawn. So what. Big deal.
How’s about something for the Beat Buddy. We’ve been waiting and waiting and waiting. All you’ve been able to do is make a few promises over the past years which have amounted to nothing. We’re faithful to the product but right now it’s a dead end. Yes, we keep putting out more songs and drum kits and have pushed that little box to its limits. Yes. We’ve worked around it’s quirks waiting for fixes and improvements and software rewrites. The simplest requests (like a REWIND function) go on deaf ears. You’ve promised AUTOPILOT. Big deal. One of your past developers had it working years ago… where is it?
We’ve passed on what we’ve learned, shared kits, beats etc, posted thousands of tunes (which you lost many years ago) and posted them again. We’ve refined tunes making them sound better and better. We’ve made people all over the world aware of the little box. We’ve turned that box into a full band… pianos, organs, bass, harmonicas, etc etc. And yet, nothing from Singular.
It should be your #1 product and yet it’s more like the forgotten child, sitting there waiting for attention.
There are plenty of loopers on the market but only one Beat Buddy. It impresses everywhere it’s shown, the Aeros not as much. It’s time to put your efforts where they belong.

Phil Ingber
One of the first users.

13 Likes

I had a similar reaction. Oh look exciting email for Singular! Oh no, no mention of BeatBuddy!
One day, I won’t be disappointed…

1 Like

Hey there,

While we understand where you are coming from, we do continue working on the BeatBuddy with 3.9.3 published relatively recently and 3.9.9 slated to enter public beta testing today!

2 Likes

The OP is referring to the BeatBuddy Manager (BBM) and your reply addresses the BB firmware.

In the interest of improved transparency, would it be possible for SS to provide the same level of detail for the BeatBuddy software and firmware (and Maestro) as SS has been providing for the AEROS? Perhaps @AnthonySostre could step in and help to improve the communications flow for the BB, BeatBuddy Manager (BBM), and firmware. He could start with a progress report on some of the major muscle moves. Where is Singular Sound on:

  • The redesign by Goran of BBM software features and capabilities e.g., at the 50% mark. A list of those capabilities and features would be nice. Examples might include what’s going to be included; what isn’t.
  • Has a new and separate team of developers been hired to work on the software or is Irving coding for both the BBM and the Maestro (as well as taking care of web issues).
  • Has coding actually begun on the BBM and if so, give us an idea in terms of percentage where they are.
  • When can beta testers expect to test something; this year, decade or never? :thinking:

The lack of regular communications for both the BBM and the Maestro creates the appearance that SS is giving users the Heisman on what BB users consider should be Singular Sound’s flagship product—hint, it is not the Aeros.

The BeatBuddy, Aeros and Maestro should be treated as an ecosystem and the approach to development, support and communications should be balanced. Right now it’s heavily weighted to just the Aeros. For consistency’s sake, it would be nice to have the same level and frequency of feedback as the Aeros gets for all three products. The emphasis seems to be on the Aeros and not much else. The progress being made is all Aeros. The difference is noticeable and disappointing.

5 Likes

Ha! Nice to see someone who uses the expression “giving the Heisman”…It has been a part of my vernacular since college (a Long Time ago).

I usually get blank looks when I use that expression. Then I strike the pose. Thanks for the giggle!

1 Like

Thought struck me reading this thread (after I got the summary on my phone and worked to find this on the forum website - another aggravation for another discussion) …how different my BB experience would have been these past 5+ years (if it didn’t all collapse in year 1) without this forum - its moderator and the early adopter stalwarts who respond in detail whenever workarounds are needed? Rhetorical question. It took these folks to unlock the potential. I’ve created some good live work with the band, thanks to creative bass and keys parts from others efforts, learned REAPER to edit BB files and had my hand held when things went horribly wrong (corrupt SD cards, lack of sync to the MAC, etc). Stopped holding my breath long ago for Singular to match the height of the bar these folks have set on their own.

3 Likes

It’s always been a huge group effort. I was turned on to the BB by one of the early programmers who was debugging, rewriting etc etc. Early on, he and another figured out the bass thing. And away we went…one song after another. At that time, SS would send out regular updates, fixing things, adding features etc etc, very collegial between the users and SS. I don’t know what happened, but to me, it seems that the BB was pushed aside in favor of other products. Certainly, those of us doing bass, opb songs, etc etc were on our own and have been for some time now. We’ve been promised a new BBM for years… and I’m sorry, new firmware doesn’t cut it. IMHO, the new features in the last few versions of the firmware seem to be for the hardcore techies android performers out there, difficult for us average Joe’s and basement rocker wannabes to use and understand. I don’t even bother updating anymore. So I’m hoping that someday we’ll see a new BBM with the features that we’ve been requesting over the years as well as the bugs (like infinite nesting of directories) all worked out. And if the current pedal can’t support it, we’ll maybe it’s time for a completely new pedal. (Or better yet, abandon the hardware and make an iPad IOS app). The BB is a unique product. It (and we) deserve far better treatment.

Phil

9 Likes

A serious omission in my previous post…one of the more enjoyable (aside from beneficial) aspects has been the back stories from the ‘backbone’ characters of the forum. I still am awed by what I’ve been able to do in a band with a small box and some practice - purely because so many answered my questions and taught me how. This past year I’m leaning on REAPER with no live gigs on the horizon but assuming that changes I need that pedal under my foot - my iPad mounted to the mic stand runs the lyrics and chords I can’t recall.

Phil, I agree on every single word you wrote. Honestly, I’m really disappointed about how the SS has handled the new BB manager and during this looong lockdown I’ve decided to put my BB aside and use Cubase and other drums VST that I found less problematic and more usable than BB. This group remains the best added value for BB users and I don’t think that at SS HQs have fully understood that without this group they would have collapsed after few months given the unfriendliness of the box (BB manager mainly), that remains a great pedal but in urgent need to be “assisted”. By the way, many thanks for all you’ve done for us, poor pedals stompers! :slight_smile:

5 Likes

:roll_eyes:

I’d also suggest that they completely stop development of auto-pilot and first concentrate on getting rid of bugs which have been in the software since g-d knows when. I don see a massive request for autopilot at this point.

1 Like

1 Like

This is our hope and plan.

We’ve been discussing how to best update people of our development statuses for some time now. It feels like there’s a constant discussion in the “office” (it’s all remote nowadays), on how much to share.

In general, we’re shying away from giving development specifics like percent of work completed and features and capabilities because it can bite us in the butt if we say: “Yes we’re working on this feature” and then encounter a hurdle which prevents us from implementing that feature.

That leaves us with only the ability to say: “It’s being worked on.” Which I understand may not be what you want to hear, but hopefully you can understand the position our team is in right now, and what we can both do on both sides of this company/community relationship to make that better going forward.

On our part, we have to deliver on those promises we made to you. We are working on that.

But on the part of the community, a large part of our reason from shying away from development specifics is the increasingly toxic nature of this community towards our team. I understand you’re angry, and you have the right to be so, but there’s an element of the discussion right now that is: “If we share this detail, and something goes wrong, will they be understanding? Or will it only fuel their anger.”

I’d have no problem shoving David in front of a camera to do a 5 minute video update on development each month, but when those updates feature a setback how are you going to respond?

If those set backs are met with understanding, we’d be incentivized to keep sharing, but if those setbacks are met instead with anger, that doesn’t incentivize us to continue sharing. Believe me when I say we’re angry enough about it ourselves!

Personally, I don’t see an increase in transparency happening until after we regain trust in the community by delivering on a few key promises first. I think if we were to share specifics right now there’d be an added burden of putting out fires after a new status update was published that didn’t meet expectations which would slow our team down from actually working on the features and bugs upsetting you.

We’ve had separate development teams for a little while now. The team that’s been working on the Aeros firmware updates is being scaled up and put in charge of the MIDI Maestro App, MIDI Maestro Firmware, and BeatBudyy Manager. They’ve proved to be consistently effective with Aeros Updates and we hope to see similar performance for the other projects now under their wing.

BeatBuddy Firmware and Web Development/IT have been separate teams for a little while right now and will continue to be so going forward.

My Beat Buddy was put aside a long time ago. It’s a great concept unit but not developed to it’s potential. Way too hard to work with for people who really want to focus on making music rather than becoming computer and software wizards. Singular Sound missed a great opportunity with this unit years ago.

They blew it from the start with a very poor BBM. I had really expected a lot better considering the price of this unit. So, I tried to work with the default beats and found them to be harsh sounding and the fills were un-natural and over played. Tried it with the band, nobody liked the sound or feel.

Basically the hardware and engine are there to make this a go-to unit. But sad to say the under-development of the software, samples and beats make it an expensive paper-weight with a negative history. I hang on to it, hoping the development will come, ( I really hope it does ) but don’t ever expect me to promote it. Anyone who asks me about this unit will need to hear the truth as I know it up to May 3-2021.

Sometimes the truth hurts, but you reap what you sow.

While I appreciate a “balanced” approach, I don’t think it represents the users. I doubt that many of those here on the forum have all three devices or even need all three devices. (Perhaps you should do a survey the results of which might drive your development needs?) the BB seems to be THE device that I constantly run into everywhere I’ve been the past years pre-COVID, in Amsterdam, in Rome, in the Blue Ridge, etc etc. It is THE product. And yet, over the same time period, it’s been crickets. Yeah, some firmware upgrades, but nothing for the BBM. And don’t even get me started about the last BBM potential upgrade where you released “something” for Mac users to try out (how’d that go?) and nothing for Windows? At the least, how’s about releasing a BBM that has that absurd nested directory issue solved? That one is a big “gotcha” that hits you when you least expect it.
A good question is why do the users put up with it as well as “pushing” the BB to new users? Because ITS A GREAT AND UNIQUE PRODUCT that can be used in so many ways. We love it. It’s made better players of us. It’s pushed us to develop other skills, like using a DAW etc. So you need to respond in kind and release something soon that shows good faith.

Phil I.

3 Likes

Your developers might need this….

Phil I.

2 Likes

I can’t answer for anyone else, but I would be happy to see video updates that included news about setbacks. We would then see generally how things are progressing. I think most of us understand that there will be occasions when things don’t go right, and we will look forward to the next month’s update when we can share in your happiness of having solved it.
You can regain the community’s trust by being more transparent, and demonstrating you are progressing towards the goals you have set. Then delivering on the promises will build on that base of trust.
If you wait, and continue to keep us uninformed beyond “we’re working on something really great”, then the trust will continue to erode (if it can get any worse).

1 Like

Honestly,Singular Sound has made a great product but I feel like they have thumbed their nose at their customers. I originally bought a BB mini and was miffed when SS introduced the version 2 shortly after. Instead of buying that I bit the bullet and bought the original BB,which hasnt seen a price drop since its introduction. Its a great product so I figure SS isnt wrong for never dropping the price. So I’ve put out almost $500 in hardware alone. Singular Sound could give us a free drum kit or something once in a while. Every time I get an email I hope for a coupon code or something but its just Singular wanting me to plunk down another $300 for the maestro or more for the looper. I get it,everyone has to make money. But I am not buying an Aeros or Midi Maestro. Why do I feel like Singular will write me off for this? I can make beats fine and I still buy packs from the website. All I want is an easier way to create drum kits and an occasional coupon code from Singular. BBM is clunky but I figure we have gotten more than was ever intended from the manager since a lot of features were never originally planned. The manager could use an overhaul,though. I dont even log in to the forums anymore because if I want something I have to ask a fellow customer and the ones that put in work here have gone above and beyond. When someone says SS seems to have abandoned BB users for the Aeros they are not wrong. I get it,it also needs to succeed,but dont forget who’s dollars made new products possible. BeatBuddy users made Singular Sound.

1 Like

It’s been like this since day one. They’re really poor about keeping promises and making their work as it should. Buying a BB as part of the indigogo campaign soured me from ever doing anything like that again. Nothing about this company has changed.

I have been a BB user since kickstarter days. I use pigtronix infinity looper. I love this device and find great joy in playing with it. To be fair, other than using the beats created for specific songs (premium) I usually just find a beat that is close enough for the song. I do not edit them to make them perfectly match the original. Good enough for me.

Thanks for the fun product!