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ATPM 5.10
October 1999






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Segments: Slices From the Macintosh Life

by David Ozab,

Authorizing Opcode on USB Macs

I have used Opcode products for many years now. I find their software selection to be the most versatile on the market (Mac or PC), and their MIDI hardware is unequaled. Though it has taken them several months to complete the shift to USB-based iMacs, G3s, and G4s, they have done a commendable job'with one exception. A personal tale of frustration follows:

A few months ago, I came across an offer on the Internet I couldn't pass up. Opcode was selling MAX 3.5.9 to students, for one week only, for $149! It normally lists for $495, so I ran home, logged on, and bought it that day. All I needed to do was give them the name of the school I attend and my social security number. I paid two bucks extra for second day air'I couldn't wait. Well, imagine my shock when I open the package and there, along with the CD and manuals, is a floppy disk. HmmmÉfloppy drive, floppy drive, where's the floppy driveÉoh right, I own a G3. I don't have a floppy drive!

I'll spare you the details of my calls to tech support. Instead, let me start out by stating that the directions given on the Opcode FAQ page do not work. Here is what you do if you find yourself in a similar dilemma, or, like me, have gone to the Web page, called tech support, and are stuck:

So if you're in the position I once was with a G3, G4, or iMac, but no music software, some titles are available online. The downloadable version of Vision DSP 4.5 is only $59, and if you can live without a few extras (Bias Peak LE and MasterDisk) and tech support, it's a great deal. The "Challenge Response" form is a nuisance, in my opinion, but at least it works in this case. As for other Opcode software, StudioVision, the full version of Vision DSP, and Musicshop are downloadable as demos. I haven't tried this, but I hope that when you register the software at the end of the thirty days, you will get online authorization.

I will contact Opcode (by e-mail; my phone bill is high enough) and inform them of what I've found. I will also suggest that they supply full downloads of all their software, with "Challenge Response" authorization until they think of something better. In the meantime, I keep considering just giving in and buying a floppy drive. But should I really have to spend $100 (or $170 for the SuperDisk) just to authorize software I already own?

AppleCopyright © 1999 David Ozab, . Send your Segments submissions to

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Reader Comments (1)

Frank Cantafio · July 10, 2000 - 01:01 EST #1
I also believe opcode has some of the best products. I own some hardware and software from them. I love Studio Vision Pro. I ran into a problem getting in touch with their tech support. I bought a Powermac G4/400 mhz and the authorization disk was working via an Imation Superdisk and all of a sudden the disk went bad. I emailed and telephoned opcode - I even told Gibson (I hear they bought Opcode or something) about it. The guy I e- mailed was nice about it, but he encouraged me to call Opcode. I tried once again and nothing happened. In addition, I was unsucessful with downloading from their site. This was a few months ago. Actually, this was the second time. I called them for a similiar question related to that. The first time, the man on the telephone said, " go to the site to download (I did unsucessfully) from the site and also,floppy disk were no longer available." I haven't used my favorite software in months. It's ashame ! I finally bought a machine that could take advantage of all the software has to offer and this happens ! Oh, well.Thanks for listening.

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