The Solution to the Subscription Issue


Dear allies,

I know many of you complain about the new subscription model and so do I.

Complaining about prices is is a short-term thing. 725usd per year should be affordable for every freelancer.

But its about disabling us users and many studios in an enormous way.
„We don´t need lots of progress, they have to subscribe anyway“.
And think of what happens once Mason gets acquired 6years from now. You couldn´t even work with the old perpetual version.

To all you guys complaining, I want to encourage you.


Write an email directly to and additionally send a letter to the CEO:

Maxon Computer GmbH
z.Hd. David McGavran / CEO
Max-Planck-Str. 20
61381 Friedrichsdorf

And please don´t be rude.

It´s us why Maxon exists. We enable them to pay the bills.

Seriously guys.
MAXON IS NOT ADOBE. That´s our chance.

Tell them directly what you think about „Subscription only“ and tell them if you want to be part of that.

Let´s see how we stick together.


They already knew what the reaction from many would be. Did it anyway.

The new Maxon CEO came over from Adobe. He was hired to do exactly this.

I appreciate the sentiment. Yes I am your ally here. But you can be sure: they won’t listen.


Honestly, I think it won’t work for one simple reason: the number of subscribers will be way, way higher that the few complaining on the forums. Same happened with Adobe. Someone is now moving to Affinity, but it’s like a drop in the ocean. I hardly believe it will affect them.


I don´t think you can compare Adobe with Maxon.

At Adobe all your bugreports get lost. At maxon you have one person processing bugreport emails and replying. At maxon they even listen to your feature requests. Honestly.

Only complaining in a forum really won´t help.

I don´t see why we should surrender instead of building momentum.



Connect the dots. Maxon’s parent company, Nemetschek bought out the 3 Maxon founders and brought in a guy from outside the company, from outside the country. That CEO, McGavran, was quite familiar with the forced-subscription approach at Adobe.

This sub-only policy wasn’t a decision by Maxon employees, but by Nemetschek and their hand-picked CEO. I very much suspect there are some Maxon employees who don’t like this. Doesn’t matter. It’s been planned for a long time. They are convinced (right or wrong) that they can repeat what Adobe did and profit from this, despite losing a good number of long-term customers.


As far as I know, Adobe has NOT that much more Subscriptions as they had Perpetuals before.
(Since a couple of years Adobe isn´t giving away the exact amount. They former had 12.5 mil. registred perpetual users when Cash Cow (CC) was invented. In end 2018 (6 yrs later !) they expected 15 mil. Supbscriptions. In the beginning, the amount was much, very much smaller 1,8 mil in 2014)
The fact is: Now all these are on Level of Master Collection (which was the most expensive Suite before and roundabout 5 % of all users bought that) and in many cases dependent to their file-formats.
Many Users have to buy the complete Tool-Box now. Regardless if they need it/can use it or not.
Adobes stock went up around 1000%.
Users also?
NEW MAXON isn´t a monopolist as Adobe is.
Competition is great and their prices are not that far away.


…because its foreseeable that there is a change in companies philosophy.
And yes - In the past Maxon was a real fair partner. Like only a very few companies I know.
But let´s wait, if the NEW MAXON is the MAXON we know from the past.


If Maxon were interested in the opinion of the users, they would have their own internet forum, right?


I kind of dont really have an opinion about the shift to subscription–and Id be surprised if Maxon suddenly changes direction. Yeah in my case we ended up paying for several full studio liceneses over the years and have since been renewing the MSas. In my mind the subscriptions are just replacing MSAs while removing the need to pay full price to start off. It just seems like this is how software works now pretty much across the board. I can see it being a big issue however for hobbyists–and that sucks, but for anyone doing this for a living and already commited to sticking with c4d–its actually made things much more affordable for anyone who was hesitant t becasue of the cost of studio.


I have nothing against renting but cutting Cinveversity and hiking the price of perpetual upgrades shows everything you need to know about Maxon ideas.


My same feeling exactly.


You nailed it. Their story like they were too busy to work out the details before the announcement is far fetched. And thinking that nobody would complain about the loss of Cineversity is hard to believe either.
They may not have a large team but come on, this is a super important shift in their business model with long term impact for all users.

Anyway, I will give them the benefit of the doubt and renew my MSA like every year for the last 10 years.

I will wait 1 year to see how things unfold but I’m quite sure they will eventually phase out perpetual licenses after R21 or R22. This will give me time to learn Maya (Indie version for modelling) and basic Houdini (for particle stuff). Both packages together are still less expensive than a 1 year subscription to C4D…
I might event get a RS subscription on top and still end up paying less…crazy.

But who knows, maybe a particle system is in the works and on the brink of a release, maybe new modelling tools are in the starting blocks…
The coming year will be decisive for Maxon if they really want people to embrace their subscription model.


One last comment on this topic since this thread was started constructively. I can appreciate the OP’s general sentiment but MAXON is not dumb; they know what they’re doing and they know there’s a decent chunk of the user population that is not happy about the situation — which ultimately boils down to MAXON keeping them in the dark about the cost of perpetual upgrades and the longevity of it.

This is a very, very easy problem for MAXON to solve. It doesn’t require any off-site fist-pounding-table executive meetings or sweaty brows as people argue. Subsciptions is clearly their new primary model and it’s pretty clear also in retrospect why the CEO that was chosen, was chosen. Such is life. I harbor no ill will towards MAXON or the new CEO. This is all about communication and fixing mistakes related to same.

Bottom line: there’s no reason in the world they can’t solve this in the span of 24 hours. Here’s what it would look like (prices listed are arbitrary but should be close to reality if MAXON is being reasonable):

"As CEO, I want to apologize for any confusion that may have arisen from our recent announcements about subscriptions and the ending of the MSA program. Here’s what I want to tell all of our customers: regardless of whether you prefer a subscription or a traditional, perpetual license agreement that is upgraded annually: we are will provide all of you with those options going forward. The perpetual option will not look exactly like the MSA option in the past because Cineversity has been removed, but otherwise the foundation is the same.

Perpetual licenses will have 3 upgrade tiers, depending on which version of the product you are upgrading from. If you have the most recent version and you are upgrading to a newly announced version, your upgrade cost will be $699. If you are one version removed from the latest, the cost to upgrade to the new version will be $1299. If you are two or more versions removed from the latest announced version, you will pay the full purchase price of C4d.

There have also been questions about our license server system. We will be instituting a license validation system that requires a simple two field login for all customers regardless of license type, and where the app can be installed on up to 2 computers at a time. If you log into a third system, one of the prior two has to be deactivated. This does not mean the software is uninstalled or that one day your perpetual license will stop working if you haven’t upgraded. While hardware and operating system requirements may eventually make it impossible to use a specific version, MAXON will always honor a perpetual license that has been purchased and will never deactivate it via the licensing server or related systems, after a certain number of years or versions.

I hope this clears the air and look forward to see all the great stuff you guys create with R21 and beyond."


Do it and all the angsty, angry threads go away. : )

Meantime as to the OP’s point, I humbly suggest each of us instead spend that writing time writing to our elected officials in government, to protest the slow but sure erosion of our rights and democracies, such as they are. Way more important use of our time if we’re being honest. That goes double for posting in forums like this.


I cant care less about subscriptions.

Maxon bought Redshift just to sell us the plugin instead of giving it for free like Maya does with Arnold.

If this is how Maxon sees its customers -as wallets- they havent moved to subscription to gave us content more often, but to gave us LESS content, and not having to worry about if its enough for prime or studio members.


Not the solution: “If you do not renew your MSA, then the price to upgrade your perpetual license to R21 will start at $999.”

Seems going forward the single version upgrade cost might be $999.

If R21 had been a release with an overhauled viewport, AND at least one major workflow overhaul like new UV workflow and/or a inclusion of Red Shift, or any number of other major improvements that have been beaten do death as requests over the years, my response to $999 would be “take my money.”

Given what’s actually in R21, even the old $725 felt a little steep. $999? Huh.

I dunno man, I dunno. Not encouraging.


but you get r21 for the price of current msa. and upgrade prices for r22 aren’t announced yet. the $999 is the upgrade price for non msa customers, same as before. at this point, nothing has changed.


Except that there is no MSA any more.


for r21, there still is. for r22 there won’t be. but again, regular upgrade prices for r22 haven’t been announced yet. that’s the info we got for now. if it will be 999, 700, 1200, all pure speculation at this point.


Sorry for the late reply. Been taking a break from this. I am not 100% sure I follow the logic there. To me the MSA thing has allowed MAXON to play semantic games all these years saying it’s something other than an upgrade. But in practice, every year, we spent $625-$750 (more recently) to get the next version of C4D and as a bonus, Cineversity access. Whatever else is bundled, whatever legalese, doesn’t matter. That $625-$750 price was an UPGRADE cost. :smile:

Starting now that value has gone down a bit… no Cineversity but same cost. And an upgrade that pretty much everyone agrees is lackluster at best (likely because they held some stuff back for the new subscribers).

If that $750 becomes $999 next year (and there’s some indication it might — I guess MAXON likes keeping people in the dark, no idea why it’s so complicated to announce an upgrade structure), that’s bad news for perpetual license folks. That’s all I’m saying.

For my part I have decided not to renew. I’m not giving MAXON my money for substantially less value this year than even years past when I withheld like R17.

Not saying I’m done for good but it’s up to them Either R22 kicks ass and at a reasonable upgrade cost for perpetual users or that’ll be it for me. Either way going to spend some time with the upcoming Blender builds once they have finalized a UI for their particle system and start building same.


Hi All,
I will make it easy. I have been following all the various threads, here and on other forums. As has other Maxon employees.

Thanks for the feedback!