Propellerhead Plug-in Platform Continues Growth

Over 230 Reason Rack Extensions to date...   04-Jun-14

Propellerhead Plug-in Platform Continues Growth

Propellerhead today announced that the Rack Extension plug-in platform is continuing to rapidly expand, with over 230 Rack Extensions now available for Reason 7.1. The online Rack Extension store now includes a broad selection of virtual instruments, effects, and audio utilities that blend seamlessly in the Reason rack, offering musicians great sound, smooth workflow, and rock-solid stability. Additionally, to help customers and developers understand what is involved in creating Rack Extensions, Propellerhead has released an interview with Rob Papen (pictured above), the acclaimed software designer behind the some of the highest-selling Rack Extension instruments.

"Thanks to participation from the industry's leading software developers, and an overwhelmingly positive response from Reason customers, the Rack Extension platform is expanding faster than we ever anticipated," stated Timothy Self, Propellerhead VP of Product Marketing. "By offering developers a turnkey solution for building, marketing, and selling Rack Extensions, we're helping them to reach the vast Reason user community--while simultaneously giving Reason customers access to more inspiring instruments and effects so they can take their music even further."

Veteran software designer Rob Papen was one of the first developers to embrace the Rack Extension platform, and his products like Predator-RE, SubBoomBass-RE and others rank among the best-selling and highest-rated in the Propellerhead online store. "The Rack Extension platform significantly expands our potential customer base," said Papen. "The Propellerhead user community is very large and it's exciting to make Rob Papen soft synths and effects available right inside the Reason rack."

"Developing Rack Extensions saves us lots of time since Propellerhead handles the marketing support, sales, and distribution. Since the Rack Extensions we create work across Mac and PC, we just have to create one version of the software and Propellerhead makes it available on both operating systems. We don't have to worry about incompatibilities and differences between hosts. Plus, the Rack Extensions we create are forward-compatible with future versions of Reason, which lowers the burden on our development team."

Rob Papen plans on continuing to develop innovative sonic tools for the Rack Extension platform. "The new Rack Extension platform offers Reason users a huge advantage," he concluded. "The consistent workflow, seamless operation, and legendary ease of use open up a whole new world of possibilities. Everything fits together, making the rack more than the sum of its parts. I'm intrigued by the challenge of creating something new especially for Reason--something that will grow in Reason in its own way."
For the full interview with Rob Papen, click here.

About Rack Extensions
Since its release in 2012, Propellerhead's Rack Extension platform has emerged as a powerful audio plug-in format, with over 600 active developers and more than 200 instruments and effects now available via the Propellerhead online store. Rack Extensions integrate seamlessly into the Reason rack, combining excellent sound, smooth workflows, and rock-solid stability with the intuitive routing, automation, deep editing, and flexibility that Reason users expect.

More information:


Even more news...

17 Comments... Comments are closed while we transition to Disqus

Synth_Fan    Said...

As a non Reason user, I went along to a PRopellerhead session about a year ago and found it incomprehensible.

Propellerhead didn't even bother to enquire whether the audience were Reason users or not.

They proceeded to talk as if we all knew the Propellerhead lingo, and the guy giving the presentation was a DJ with absolutely no capability to explain anything.

Some people left half way through, I stuck it out till the end and tried to ask a few questions - I just didn't come across as 'hip' enough for them and was basically brushed off.

I have a lot of experience, and found this to be the worst demo session I have ever been at, hands down.

I found the Propellerhead Plugin- lingo incomprehensible. The platform looks like a mess; and I'd never use it.

What seemed to be a great 'alternative' company about 5 - 10 years ago has become a hack-job overblown platforms, in my opinion.

Propellerhead will have to do a lot of convincing before I'll every engage their technology.

04-Jun-14 07:20 AM

raphus    Said...

Two RE instruments that are sorely needed: a sample-resynthesizing/morphing thing like Alchemy or Cube, and a sampler/ROMpler like the Fantom/Motif/Krome. Those two would get me to leave other options for good and use only Reason.

04-Jun-14 08:23 AM

Prop_Fan    Said...

To Synth_Fan:

I´m make a living making music and I've used Reason since program version 2.5. I do 99.9% of my mixing jobs, productions etc in the DAW (currently Reason 7).

I don't know which Propellerhead Session you went to but...hey, the DAW is not for everyone. Much like Ableton or even Pro's a matter of taste.

And the RE technology is superb IMHO. It runs like clockwork.

04-Jun-14 08:39 AM

RP    Said...

I've honestly been using Reason since the day 1.0 was released, there's just nothing like it for workflow and quick results. Props have always been great to their customers so I agree, I don't think one poorly orchestrated session encapsulated very much.

Synth_Fan, can you give examples of the lingo you find incomprehensible or points where the platform looks like a mess, I'm sincerely interested as I've always thought they were good at making things intuitive and their aesthetics are top notch and well layed out.

Here's my thing though on the story, what a pointless press prelease from props. Today they anounced how many rack extensions there are, bleah.

04-Jun-14 09:10 AM

MeteorthoR    Said...

If they were doing so well, they wouldn't need to pay sonicstate to tell us how well they're doing.

Also, we'd see a lot more big names developing rack extensions by now. What company doesn't like money, and the opportunity to earn more of it?!?

I left Reason behind because there aren't enough quality rack extensions in the shop, compared to VSTs. I don't have the time to wait for Reason and rack extensions to catch up to the rest of the music-making world.

And rack extensions are non-transferable!

A good craftsman reserves the right to change/upgrade his tools from time to time, and that simply isn't possible in Reason.

04-Jun-14 10:21 AM

Synth_Fan    Said...

@RP and Others: I'm genuine in my post - it isn't a trolling gripe. I have a Physics Degree, have a project studio filled with synths and so on. I went along because I wanted to engage Reason for a long time and - I couldn't understand any of the flow of the environment.

I was a bit polite in my last post abotu the DJ - he wan an idiot. How Propellerhead hired him I'll never know.

But - my gripe is real and genuine. there were about 100 at the session. At the break, about 50 left because they knew this was a mornonic session.

The DJ was mouthing off in "DJ / Dance Music" lingo I couldn't understand even though I'm a fairly contemporary media and electronic music composer.

But - and I genuinely mean this - Reason looked like a mess. I was lost after 5-6 minutes. The DJ explained nothing; and overall it was a complete turn off.

I persevered and tried to ask a couple of intelligent, leading questions 1-on-1 at the end and all I got was "ye get a feel for it after a while - ye know ....". No effort to engage my (or other) people's questions and because I didn't have a Mohican or sun-glasses on (in the darkened room) I was just brushed aside.

A complete waste of a night. I remember going home furious with myself for wasting time like that.

I can't remember the lingo or terms - but I DO remember that it seemed hopelessly messy, overly complicated and just too tricky to be worth the effort.

I left and forgot about Reason for good.

I complained to Propellerhead by email and got a polite email back - but I'm flagging it here because the events really happened and yet it looks here like Reason is the greatest gift to mankind when it seems to me Propellerhead don't' give a damn about new users or potential new customers; and I believe the technology is a mess - an overgrown concept that has not scaled well.

04-Jun-14 11:40 AM

Garvin    Said...

I agree with Synth_Fan, a few weeks ago I went to purchase some milk at the store. The clerk was useless, I tried to ask some intelligent leading questions, I have a degree you know , but the clerk wouldn't engage. I'm a fairly contemporary milk drinker but even with my advanced intelligence I was unable to understand.

I wrote to the general cow community afterwards but just got a polite moo back.

I left and forgot about milk for good

Well done synth_fan, it's hard these days to be wowed by Internet forum posts but your entire dismissal of Reason forever more based primarily on a bad session you went to was refreshingly inane.

04-Jun-14 01:32 PM

NSTAR    Said...

Ha Garvin, that was some pretty funny sh*t

Synth_Fan, if a DJ, explaining 'Reason' of all things, had you lost within 5 - 6 minutes, think I'd be asking for the money it cost to get that Physics Degree back. Unless you meant 'Physical Ed Degree', then you should probably hold on to it :)

04-Jun-14 01:52 PM

raphus    Said...

I'm guessing that the reason for this post is Propellerhead's new format/tool/something for developers making REs. (I just use the program, I know nothing about the programming behind it.) I think Propellerhead is trying to entice more manufacturers and developers to make RE versions of their synths. I'll all for that.

04-Jun-14 05:20 PM

al_bot    Said...

I wish Reason just went with VST support, but I get them wanting to make more money with extensions. I wanted to like Reason but it didn't fit my work flow. I ended up using Synapse's Orion for sketching / messing around and then Cakewalk.

04-Jun-14 07:29 PM

Karlo    Said...

To get this straight Synth_Fan, Reason is released in 2000 and at the time is like nothing that went before it (still really nothing like it). You wait 13 years avoiding downloading a demo or the likes and decide to try it out by attending a session. The 'DJ' who is presenting the clinic is not to your liking and the event is a shambles and you declare that you will never use the application.

You join the ranks of Amazon reviewers who give a product 1 star because the shipping sucked. Shame on you for tainting this fine web site.

I've been using Reason since about 4.0. I honestly don't think the RE concept (and avoiding VSTs) was a money driven exercise, it was a natural progression for an application that typically only released new devices within upgrades. Some REs are amazing, some are pretty terrible, but to each their own. You could happily use the software and never ever need to get an extension. By staying away from AUs and VSTs though Props have truly kept Reason as stable as an application can be (RE's only crash their own space, and I've never ever had the application falter on me after hundreds of hours use).

It's really an amazing entity. You may well deem it not for you and that's a matter of choice, but on no grounds can anyone say it's a bad piece of software. If you think it so then please share specific reasons why beyond the obvious unnamed DJ who ran a clinic a year ago

04-Jun-14 09:20 PM

vember    Said...

Sonic Charge Microtonic for RE please.

05-Jun-14 04:55 AM


The re format will be considered a failure until it gets the cream of the crop synths like Diva, Monark and Omnisphere. The Rob Papen stuff is outdated and cannot compete with synths like Diva or Dune 2 for quality. As for the included synths in Reason, they sound terrible!Even free synths like Tyrell or Synth1 sound better.

07-Jun-14 09:10 PM

Donster    Said...

Failure..? 230+ Re instruments and FX... LOL ...and who cares about overpriced instruments from the makers of Omnisphere anyway...

08-Jun-14 05:04 AM

Satrco    Said...

'As for the included synths in Reason, they sound terrible!'

What??? Thor and Malstrom sound terrible. Please share with us links to the amazing works you've unleashed on the world with Tyrell and Synth1 that sound sonically 'better' than what the two Reason monsters can produce. In the blue corner I'll put Prodigy's 'Always Outnumbered, Never Outgunned' written primarily using Reason 4.

I wont have this ridiculousness thrown at my beloved Reason damnit.

09-Jun-14 02:12 PM

Synth_Fan    Said...


Essay gripes aside, my basic point is that it'd clear Propellerhead are striving to develop a new 'platform'.

But to me - their demo session of the last RE release was genuinely extremely poor, people voted with their feet and left early, the DJ they used was extremely poor and could explain nothing. The session itself was equally poorly run - no effort made to distinguish between users and non-users; and when I flagged this with Propellerhead they could care less.

Into the bargain I found the technology (as explained) to be confusing, convoluted and sloppy.

An no - I did not download the demo - there are thousands of releases I do not demo, I'm too busy!

My advice to Propellerhead - a new, smart, high profile initiative to explain their direction, technology, jargon - to non users.

the bottom line - they are different to other platforms and they are trying to grow something that started off small and it is not scaling well - it is trickier than other more standard approaches.

(I've made no comment on the underlying quality of their product and am sure many stunning productions have resulted from their technology) - but from the outside the company and the technology comes across as particularly horrid to me.

I'm sure there are other perspectives but mine is real, genuine and was shared by half the attendees at the session I went to - so I'm offering worthwhile advice to Propellerhead here. They should take it on board.

10-Jun-14 06:05 AM

eXode    Said...

I can honestly say that as I Reason user I don't want ports of existing VSTi's, I much prefer to see exclusive RE's such as propellerhead Parsec, Synapse Audio Antidote, and Blamsoft Viking to name a few.

10-Jun-14 12:46 PM

Comments are closed while we transition to Disqus