VST Platinum – 1,700 plug-ins for just $39?

Related: , , , , Posted in random posts on Apr 17, 2009 - comment 37 comments

Recently I came across a website called VST Platinum (no I’m not going to link to it), where former Sony BMG sound engineer Greg Hoffman is trying to sell you a collection of Over 1700 Hi Quality VST Plugins, And 4000 Cutting-Edge Sound Effects.

VST Platinum

After reading a few paragraphs on this website, scrolling down to the testimonials and checking some of the screenshots of the VST plug-ins I concluded that this $1,838.00 value package that’s being sold for $39 is a complete scam.

Obviously, they’re selling stuff that’s available for free online (screenshots on the website include freeware plug-ins by GTG Synths and Odo Synths).

I noticed some things on the VST Platinum website seemed a bit “off”.

  • Some of the testimonial images have title tags that show “Karaoke Star DVD Testimonial”.
  • It keeps saying there’s a 100% money back guarantuee and that the offer may expire 3 days from now, but every day you check the site you’ll notice that expiration date is 3 days from the current date.
  • Somewhere in the bottom it says: You’ll get the 2 CD set in your mailbox within 12 days and be on your way to obtaining the most comprehensive lionel trains repair, restoration, parts list and catalog guide. Guaranteed..

Their contact page links to some kind of online support help desk, where I submitted a ticket with a request for a list of the plug-ins. No answer yet…

Okay, so if you are still doubting, don’t be fooled.

I checked the Karaoke SuperStar DVD website, which is basically the same as the VST Platinum one, except Greg Hoffman is now Rachel Patterson. Just like Frank Keenan’s Lionel Trains site, which funnily enough talks about VST plug-ins in some of the text.

I googled around a bit to find an address that seems to house a lot of these junk websites: 2021 Midwest Road (Suite 200 and possibly others) Oak Brook IL 60523.

I guess this would be some kind of call center since it seems to house tons of companies. You can see the building on Google Maps.

Now all of this could very well be legit in some kind of twisted way, but the same address also comes up with some scam alerts, so I figured I should report it here anyway.

I would hope you would never fall for the offers of these type of sketchy looking sites, but for those who do get tempted by the idea of getting thousands of dollars worth of plug-ins for just $39… it’s too good to be true. Don’t fall for it!

comment
Rob Papen Predator
  • Magniz

    Thanks for the alert. As you said this all might be legit and in best case simply a collection of free stuff bundled onto one DVD.

    Speaking from experience you should all be alerted if you come across a website where you have to scroll down forever to reach the footer. I’ve seen many of these site, all in the same style and selling thousands-of-something. You actually get a product delivered but mostly it’s just free stuff collected from various sources.

    Just recently I came across another site looking identical and selling 1000 kick drums as a download for 10 bucks. After I purchased it (btw, useless crap) I was contacted and asked for a trade. Sounds of mine for some ebooks on Studio setup and music production. Nah.

  • http://audiogeekzine.com Jon

    I thought this was a total scam. I started seeing it a few weeks ago, the copy is so vague about what you actually get, so I was pretty skeptical.

    Ronny can you put HUGE letters saying this is a scam.

  • http://rekkerd.org ronnie

    @Jon: I’ve changed the thumb image a little, just in case people skim over the post and miss the point.

  • tb

    it’s just a marketing site, with a script that changes so it’s always 3 days hence. not a big deal in the marketing world. and the address is probably just a fulfillment house that ships his products and has other clients they ship for. a lot of these sites are just clones of one another with different text. and they give each other testimonials.

    not a big deal. not a scam. if you’re not selling informational products online, you may not understand how it all works.

    and 40 bucks is not that much money to have a lot of freebies compiled onto one disc. how much time would that take to go through kvr and put together…if so, does your time have value?

    tb

  • lordkook

    ugh. i’m surprised someone would go to the trouble of doing this whole thing on an actual, stand-alone website. these kind of “OMG AMAZ1NG VST COLLECTION!11!” cds are all over Ebay, and it’s vexing enough to see people getting away with it there.

  • http://rekkerd.org ronnie

    @TB, I guess you’re right. But I still think it’s a scam really.

    He’s selling things that are freely available, and likely without consent of the developers of all these 1,700 plug-ins. That has nothing to do with how valuable anyone’s time is, it’s just not right.

    I could release a DVD with 2,000+ freeware plug-ins I have sitting on my harddrive. Of course I would have to remove all the pesky readme.txt files that say I can’t sell the software, or redistribute it ect. But it would probably only cost me a few dollars to have a bunch of DVDs done. Then just charge $40 for it, claiming it’s worth thousands of dollars… and watch the clueless order…

    I dunno man, I read your website and I guess you’re just sitting there in your underwear making money right?

    “Who Else Wants To Know How This System Makes Me $103,485.27 Per Year On eBay While I Sit At Home In My Underwear”

    I just don’t get it Tim…

  • tb

    Ronnie, What’s not to get? I work for myself from home. It’s pretty awesome. Thanks for the plug.

    Anyway it’s all speculation about what’s on the VST Disc unless someone actually ORDERS it. Otherwise a review of it is just pointless.

    It’s like saying “I heard from someone that I know that the new record by so and so is really bad so here’s my review saying it’s really bad…although I have not actually heard it myself. I’m just guessing”

    That is what I don’t get.

    Again, you’re just assuming what’s on there and if he has distribution rights.

    If 40 bucks is a lot of $ to someone then they could just return it for a refund. No big deal. Credit card companies side with you if you’re not happy with something. No one is forcing anyone to buy anything.

  • http://www.digitallofi.com digital lofi

    Yeah, these “make a million bucks on the internet” scams are all over the US. They usually prey on people who are not to savvy with the interwebs. So, TM, I only have to glance at your site to know you’re a snake oil salesman. And this is the same kind of scheme or in that same mindset. One step above Nigerian email scams really. People trying to make money without actually doing anything, leeching on google and the wealth of free information on the internet.

    I don’t have to order this disk to see that these charlatans don’t have the right to distribute this stuff. The lack of listing is very telling in this case. And even freeware developers are, rightfully, strict about their re-distribution licenses.

  • http://jcproductionz.com Aaron

    Yeah looks dodgy,cashing in on others hard work. Hopefully most audio heads are saavy enough to steer clear of this marketing crap.

    The fact that the guy greg doesn’t list whats on the dvd is more than enough reason to suspect it, and obviously he doesn’t want 100’s of pi**ed-off freeware developers contacting him.

  • tb

    Diagital Lofi– Sure man. Whatever you say. I can tell you know everything already so what can I say? Enjoy your 20s while they last. It’s the period in life when you know everything. At 30 you’ll realize you know nothing. Or at least nothing worthwhile.

    And I never said make a million bucks. Where does it say that? $100K isn’t that much.

    But thanks for twisting my words into what isn’t there. I actually do help people make money and get paid for it. And it feels great. What do you contribute?

    Oh and thanks again for the plug. Love having a site in the top 700k on alexa. Get back to me when your site cracks the 5Million mark. =) Your “wordpress error” pages are hysterical. Might wanna tell the phenomenal puffermedia they suck. I hope you didn’t pay for that.

    Criticism from nobodies is just part of success. That’s cool.

  • http://www.digitallofi.com digital lofi

    Ha ha!

    First, I’m in my 40s.

    So, yeah, fail.

    I’m more jaded than you can possibly imagine. I’ve also worked on the web for a long, long time (well, in internet years). So, while I don’t know everything, and never claimed to, I’ve seen a lot. And if you’d bothered to, you know, read my site you’d see that it’s been retired, which would explain the wordpress errors. (Tho’ thanks for the heads up on those.) I fired puffermedia in the meantime. ;-) Those jokers never do anything right.

    Hits and visits are a fool’s errand, my friend, if you have nothing to contribute to the conversation. Surprisingly enough there’s a whole lot of folks on the internet that run sites because they have something to say, or some passion they want to share. They want to find other who are interested in that; they want a dialog. Numbers are fine, but engaged readers are the point. But you keep tilting at windmills.

    More to the point, why do you care about all of this? Most of my comment was mostly directed at this disc – you know, the point of this post – and only took a swipe at you because you felt the need to defend it. A disc that, at very best, is being distributed by some “internet entrepreneur” with no interest in computer music, some “company” that sees there’s a buck to be made by targeting high google ranking bait. Unless that’s you, shut the f’ up.

  • http://rekkerd.org ronnie

    Before things get out of control, let me just lock up and conclude that I am not alone in being skeptical about this type of offer (for good reason or not, up to you to decide).

    If someone did/does and can provide me with a list of what’s on the DVD I would gladly receive a copy of said list at my contact address.

  • http://www.gtgsynths.com Mik Sybrandt

    Bewarned, you are paying for free plugins that you could have just downloaded yourself. Of course it`s nice to have all these free plugins on one dvd. But this guy never got a permission to distribute my plugins this way.
    Anyway, it`s up to you if you want to pay for freeware plugins.

    Mik,GTG Synths.

  • louie

    Mik,
    Actually, I came across the comments & feel
    they would typically be justified. However, in addition to many freeware VST’s, there are many – many useful plug-ins from Waves,
    Korg, Cubase, N.I. and they are full versions.

    I don’t believe at all this was scamish!

    louie

    • Ssds

      Are you brain dead? The inclusion of Waves, Korg, Cubase, and N.I is even more reason to believe that this is a scam.

      Nice try.

  • http://www.gtgsynths.com Mik Sybrandt

    Sure.
    All I am saying is this guy never got a permission from me to put my plugins on his cd. And I had to mail him several times, and finally threaten him with legal actions before he removed my material.
    I am sure his cd is usefull for many people. But he just needs to learn a little about distribution rules.

    Cheers.

    Mik

  • http://rekkerd.org ronnie

    @Louie, besides the fact that they never mention that their collection includes stuff that is available freely on the internet (how is that a $1,838.00 value?), they are distributing the freeware without permission of the developers.

    You mention Waves, Korg, Cubase, Native Instruments. Can you be more specific? Are these demo versions, or free software like the KORE Player?

    Like Mik say, a CD full of freeware tools could well be useful to people, but that doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be legit.

  • http://rekkerd.org ronnie

    Louie was so kind to send me an example of what’s available on the disc.

    What he sent me was a file called “Korg legacy Setup2.exe” which turns out to be a pirated copy of the Korg Legacy Collection, as it shows the name of a cracker group in the about dialog (TALiO)…

  • http://www.gtgsynths.com Mik Sybrandt

    Well, there you go. I am not surprised ;-)

  • http://jcproductionz.com Aaron

    Most unfortunate is the fact that a lot of folk are buying the dvd, the only reason I say this is cause that website has been advertising the dvd on adwords and still is to this day.

    They’re operating a buisness on very shakey foundations, and when things get ugly they’ll be hit hard.

  • DJ D

    Fucking scumbag, I hope he gets burned, BAD. Whatever about people downloading cracked versions of stuff, but for someone to try and SELL cracked software. The scumbag should be locked up.

  • js

    so we buy it or not is a crime or bullshit fake and i never get the thing tall me about it

    because you spend all the day downloading and is alote of time so i see this i said ocourse i buy it ofcourse lo compro

  • http://rekkerd.org ronnie

    @js, this compilation definitely is breaching copyright with some of the free plug-ins they have put on this disc without getting permission from the developer.

    According to Louie there is even pirated commercial software on it. Don’t get it.

    If you need some direction on how to get some good freeware stuff feel free to contact me and I’ll give you some pointers.

  • http://bobskeyboardz.us.pn/ Bobskeyboardz

    Well Its either Freeware or Warez both are wrong because it says “Do not include this software with any 3rd party package” and that’s what some people are doing, being 3rd party sellers.

  • Andy

    This is a confirmed scam, and we’re working to get him in jail. The customer testimonials are faked (consumer fraud) as well as the magazine endorsements he lists, meaning he is illegally using their logos without permission.

    I actually got through to him using some wizardry and he claims they are located malaysia and the florida address is just to forward it there, but the email traced back to Miami. He signed his name is “Modm” which is probably fake.

    If there is such a person as Greg Hoffman then he hasn’t worked in the recording industry for a day in his life. If anyone has actually purchased this package please respond to my comment and and I will try to contact you, as any information to get this guy in jail would be appreciated.

    • alex mcginness

      Hi, I bought the package and its great. Yes it all freeware plugs and it was worth the 40 bucks not to have to spend the time surfin the net looking for these plugs, and the time to find out that these plugs are available. It boils down to what your time is worth. I paid the cash and got the package as promised. It came on one DVD. No complaints…and not a scam.

      • http://rekkerd.org Ronnie

        It’s not about what your time is worth. Many freeware plugin developers do not allow their plugins to be distributed, much less commercially.

        • alex mcginness

          hes not selling the plugs. Hey I paid $40 as a finders fee to this guy and all these plugs are what he dug up for me. It was a great deal for me and for a few of the developers of these free plugs, as Ive since bought some of their paid for products. Again…the guy delivers exactly what he promises on a DVD that also has a catalog file with pics of the plugs on the disc and a description of each. Id pay $40 for that alone as I know how much time it takes to compile one of those with only a few hundred pics. Again. this is not a scam. He delivers “exactly” what his ads promises. If thats your idea of a scam…I think you need to reasses how you define the word.

          • http://rekkerd.org Ronnie

            The plugins are distributed at a price, that’s commercial exploitation. Call it selling, call it a finders fee… Regardless, this collection includes many plugins that are not allowed to be distributed by anyone other than the developer. Also, nowhere on the website does it mention anything about these plugins being freely available online. Withholding that tiny bit of information is completely misleading. Now show me the catalog of included plugins and I will show you what copyright licenses Mr Hoffman broke.

          • ALEX MCGINNESS

            Yes there were a couple of plugs on here that are warez….so what. If the owners of these bits of software are that P.O’d he would have been shut down ages ago. You may wanna believe that not saying that the plugs are free ware is misleading but all advertisers omit things from ads. All ads are misleading to some degree. Again, what was promised in the ad was delivered, and then some. Most people are P.O’d cause they didnt think of this first. So, bright boy, its been said that most opportunities are disguised as hard work. Heres an opportunity for an armchair moralist like yourself. Buy the DVD and contact the owners of all the plugs on the DVD and tell them that youre putting together a promotional DVD of the freeware that they offer. It will cost them nothing, but a fee of $19.95 will be charged to the end user as a finders/compilers fee of the best of the best free ware out there, and included in the DVD will be the web addy of each companies website. Its the same thing as on the DVD from this guy, only he didnt contact the owners of the software first. You can argue “thats the point” but you can dance on the head of that needle all day if you like.

          • smash-k888

            Finders fee?! Is that what it’s called when someone sells mass produced boot-leg movies & Cd’s- that they don’t have the rights to called? Selling this collection of plugins that were meant to be freeware or donation-ware without permission is no different than selling boot-legged or stolen goods on the streets!

            Only a newb would pay 4 something like this or risk their computer or personal info by buying & installing goods from a untrusted or unknown source. Rekkerd, KVR, & other sites announce the latest freeware & payware plugins on a daily basis. It doesn’t take any serious research to find all sorts of plugins if you keep up with the latest vst news! Putting all else aside… who in the hell would want to install nearly 2k amount of plugins- most likely being buggy.

          • ALEX MCGINNESS

            You dont have the disk. End of that arguement. Theres a difference between bootleg movies that are not offered for free and free plugs. This guy did the work, compiled them, cataloged them, and then sold “that” work. I highly recomend this disk. ITS WORTH THE CASH. AND, think of the free advretising the developers are getting by getting their work ( which theyre giving away anyway,) by getting their stuff into the hands of more people. Now, not everybody knows about KVR. Not everybody has the time to go there and browse. This disk is a win for the guys that are doin the freeware/donation ware thing. BTW, havent come across anything “buggy” on the disk as of yet.

          • http://rekkerd.org Ronnie

            Hey Alex, you’re continually ignoring the fact that they are breaking the law by ignoring or willfully breaching copyright. You even admit there is pirated software included…

            However much you seem to enjoy and value the work, it’s just plain wrong and should not be promoted as something “good”.

            I don’t think you’ll “get it” so I will be moderating your further comments.

          • ALEX MCGINNESS

            Fine….Ill go shoot myself. Thanks for the morning smile.

          • Nekro Dean

            It is a scam and as much as it seems You feel the need to prove to Yourself that it is not alex mcginness (I doubt that is even Your real name and to be honest with You: You’re sort, Whom I have experienced unfortunately before as have many others have done also, Ronnie whom is a top bloke, Keeps such a great resource for the audio community running aka Rekkerd.org and in this case is simply looking out for all and yet You have the gall to tell Him that He is WRONG!?! You are probably the scum behind this Pathetic, Snide and no matter whatever way You attempt to term such a ‘service’, A rip off for all the GOOD People, Which includes the hard work of many overly generous plug-in developers sitting on a ‘product’ whom will remain totally uncredited and it is just the antithesis of what a good audio community is all about: Straight up scam and here You are shilling as a “happy customer”, If I am wrong and You just are a “Happy Customer” then You should still be ashamed of Yourself and RETHINK or better still GAIN a set of honest, decent morales…That does not cost a penny). Ronnie is no fool though and knows how Scam ‘artists’ simply know no bounds and the utter piss taking cheek of them. Which IMveryHumbleHO is YOU. Disgraceful either way

    • alex mcginness

      Hey Andy, the VST Platinum package is a great deal. I bought it and am completely happy that I did as its exactly what the the guy promises in the ad. It took a little while to get here but it did arrive as promised. No help here to jail the guy. I even talked with him on the phone.

  • http://www.cfa-sound.com Cyforce / CFA-Sound

    Thanks for the warning Ronnie!

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