C.LYDE brings up a few interesting views on this subject. In my experience users/people are different, some always ignore the manual and prefer to either ‘figure it out’ or ask someone close by for help rather than open the manual. I remember a PC at work that had a full set of documentation for the application running on it, and every time someone would be using it, they would ask the experienced users in the area (disturbing them from their work) rather than seek an answer in the book.
Others will not do anything until they read the manual, being afraid of errors if left on their own.
I think the modern analogy is one group jumps first and figures out how they should land on the way down, the other group plans an exit strategy before they even consider jumping…
Not everyone using this software is ‘a professional’, to the delight of the producers of this program, there are many hobbyists that also use WL for their audio production needs. I realize there is an assumption that knowledge of the mastering process exists before the application is used, but in practice I think you have about 20-30% for which the process is new and there is an eagerness to learn to do things the right way given the proper tools.
I purchased WL7 in September of 2012, I was a previous WL5 user and found the manual very helpful, as I work on audio in spurts … 3 months of a project then nothing for a year. I don’t care what it is that you do, if you don’t do it often, especially if it is a complicated process, you will forget some part of the process - especially if they keep moving/changing the interface.
I was extremely disappointed in the quality of the documentation. Not only is it sparse, but it makes claims it cannot fulfill (states that the little info arrow can be used in parts of the interface that it cannot [pop-up modal windows]), or the lack of useful tutorials to teach the process rather than just the function of the feature. To me WL7 is incomplete, and the current publication is a defect that should be fixed like any other bug. I for one would like to see a real set of documentation appear as a WL7 point upgrade. Why should I be forced to pay for something I should have received to begin with? And I say that as someone with a limited income.
I imagine this subject has been discussed at length elsewhere in these forums. But since some have the reaction that accurate and through documentation is not needed, I thought I’d defend the rest of us non-professionals that would sure love to read how to do something instead of coming to the forums repeatedly to find out. Other, competitive products have may ‘demos’ on YouTube these days. I feel like I purchased something from Adobe, where the how-to is delivered as a series of classes each costing about 1/2 of the price of the application. It just should be easier (And yes, I have been reading Everest’s Handbook and Bob Katz’s fine tome on Mastering).
Good technical writers are difficult to find, and many products get rushed to market without the care in documentation preparation included. It is a business after all, and costs are offset by revenue, not by free training.