Waves shifts to subscription-only model with two plans, halting sales of individual plugins
Waves now offers Essential and Ultimate plans for users.
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Waves has put a stop to plugin sales in a move to a subscription-only model with two plans available for customers to choose from.
Waves plugins can now only be accessed via its Creative Access platform through the Waves Essential and Waves Ultimate plans. Waves Essential offers access to over 110 plugins at $14.99 per month, while Waves Ultimate offers over 220 “industry-leading” plugins for $24.99 per month, with Essential also receiving select new plugins while Ultimate will receive new plugins on a regular basis.
Both plans also offer access to StudioVerse, which will make thousands of mix chains available with instant AI search. Waves is also currently offering two months of free access to Splice Sounds+ for a limited time with either plan.
The Ultimate plan also includes Waves’ Spherix Immersive compressor and limiter plugin suite that was released late last year. Consisting of a compressor and a brickwall limiter, the plugin is designed to make workflows easier for producers and sound engineers working in immersive 7.1.4/7.1.2 mixing environments.
Waves has said on its Twitter account that any plugins you have purchased from the company will continue to be owned by you. However, you will only own them at the latest version you updated them to prior to the launch of the Waves Creative Access subscription.
You continue to own them, at the latest version you bought or updated to prior to the launch of Waves Creative Access.
You can continue to use your plugin/bundle licenses and software, on all systems and host applications that are compatible with the versions you own.
— Waves Audio (@WavesAudioLtd) March 27, 2023
In a statement emailed to its customers, Waves says: “Today, we take the next step. Whatever you are inspired to create, we want you to have everything you need—instantly at your fingertips, always.
“To make this a reality, today we launch a full-scale Waves plugin subscription, Waves Creative Access, which is now the exclusive way to get Waves plugins. All Waves plugins, always up to date, with new releases as well as updates added at no extra cost—all available to you in a simple subscription—the easiest, most affordable way to get Waves plugins, ever.”
While Waves assures this to be a positive move for creatives, some artists are dubious of the subscription-only model. Producer Ewan Pearson touts the move as “a horrible way to treat customers who’ve built up their collection of plug-ins over years,” while artist and content creator Benn Jordan says the “‘all or nothing’ subscription model is absolute trash.”
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