If it were really only $10k? I'd do it in a heartbeat.
With each year, I find myself being lured by the siren song of TERABYTES of new samples. Ever nicer orchestral libs. More realistic -whatevers-. I find myself buying less and less. It has nothing to do with the libs themselves, it's that I've come to realise I'm up to my -neck- in 'sounds' and 'plug-ins' and 'presets'. I have enough raw 'data' to last until I -die-.
More and more I find myself avoiding new -anything- because I'm -exhausted- managing the crap I have now. For example: what's the point of having 20 compressors if auditioning them is frickin' tedious? Far better to fall back on 2 or 3 tried and true.
What's the point of using a product like VSL Dimension Strings when setting up complex sections will take up literally -days- of my life? I look at the screens and I think 'Crap, if I had real players I could write this on score paper in an hour. But this'll take 3 days to make work in Cubase.' So I simply don't write that complex an idea. I use a simpler string lib. Nobody cares. But -I- care. I didn't get to do the super fun thing that is the reason I -write- music. Because the tools are sooooooooo tedious.
In short, the slower workflows have altered my -composing- and cut down on my -buying-. I fit my writing to what works in Cubase, rather than the other way round. It's not -terrible- but I liken it to a pension without a COLA. The requirements keep going up 5% every year, but Cubase workflows stay flat. So after 10 years, I'm starting to feel that 'gap'.
And there's simply no hardware I can throw at this kind of problem. As I wrote, Cubase is 'fast' enough. It's just not -fast- enough, if you take my meaning. I'm having the nagging feeling that I did better work in SX4 with far smaller sample libs and far lower res plug-ins. Perhaps this is the digital version of guys like Jack White who are fed up with too much tech. Maybe the problem is too much of the wrong tech. Or maybe my discomfort is Cubase's way of telling me I'm gettin' too old for this gig. :D
One last thing and then I promise I'm done. :D The maddening thing for me... I rant... then take a few years off... is that this is what I call the 'slot machine' problem: They always get -so- close that I keep thinking 'next time! It's gotta pay off next time if I just put in another quarter!' The things that -really- would help me are NOT huge deals. I really don't need a whole new 'window system'. Or a 'plug-in system'. Or any vast new initiative. They'd be -nice- but that's -not- the end of the world. I just need the Window On Top bug fixed. I just need the Sends pane to have both the rack -and- the panning together---like it used to be! I just need the Presets and MediaBay to be easier. I need a key command to get to the Info Line. I need a Lock Locators command. I need to be able to split an event inside an editor. I need the range tool to be tweaked a bit. I'd like to be able to chain LE presets together. -Small- things. Cubase already does enough stuff to last me a lifetime. It's those -little- things that are the holdup.
It's funny - I was bandying about the idea with another composer recently of what it would cost to develop a DAW from the ground up exclusively for film & TV composers. It feels like no DAW really caters to the workflows and needs of professionals while being reliable, flexible and jettisoning much of the fluff. A pipe dream...
Imagine something as complex as Cubase (as in years of super-specialized highly-paid work by a team of about 20 people, plus all the administration) that you can only sell to about 1,000 people around the world. How much would it cost to buy? My rough estimate: $10,000.