Talk-Zone #2 Interview with Tone2

In Developers, Interviews by Carl

Hello guys,

welcome to the new talk-zone at
We’re proud to talk with Markus from Tone2 to look a little bit behind the scenes from this small south-german company.

Hello Markus, welcome to this interview.
What was your intension to start with developing own tools and when did you start?
I started developing audiosoftware in 1991. I was part of the demoscene and we needed music for our demos and games. Back in those days there was not much software available. So we had to build our own trackers and tools in DOS, Assembler and Pascal.

How long do you work (on average) on a prototype / how much time do you invest to create a new plug-in, and which process makes the most fun to do?
A prototype usually takes several months. Only 25% of the prototypes result in a final product, since stuff doesn’t always sound es good as expected or the current computers are unable to handle it. Creating a new plugin takes between one and three years. Small plugins which do standard stuff take less time than large innovative plugins. I enjoy sounddesign most.

Yeah, I enjoy doing presets and sounddesign also very much. And which program languages and utilities do you use for developments?
Visual Studio, C++, Photoshop, 3d software, X-Code, Assembler, Matlab, Wavelab, Netobjects, Camtasia, PHP, Java, HTML and many other small tools.

How much guys are working for Tone2 and what do they do?
We go one or two programmers, two people for support, one person for taxes and office, one guy for webdesign and graphics, at least 4 people for handbooks and around 20 people for presets and testing. Most of them are external and work only for us as long as they are involved to a specific project.

What’s the top-seller from Tone2, and what makes it different to other products from other companies?
Sorry, but I’m sure you’ll understand that i can’t give any internal information about sales to the public.

Do you also produce and play music?
All of us do music and use Tone2 products in their productions. We got several professional producers in our sounddesign team. These are the ones I remember from the scratch:

Which interesting plug-ins could the Tone2 user expect next?
Saurus 2 will be released soon. The synthesis engine has been completely reworked and it now offers a much more detailed emulation of the analog sound. We also just finished Electra 2.1 which will include an authentic emulation of the JP8000 Supersaw and a vocoder module which can replace the famous EMS3000.

Electra and Saurus 2! I liked the first versions already. Can’t wait to see the next one and test it here. And which interesting projects could the Tone2 user expect next? Is there a plan for an own app?
There are currently no plans for mobile devices, because I don’t think that these devices will play a significant role for professional productions in the near future.

You say it – that’s the way I think, but people often ask about apps, but I woudn’t care about that! But now complete this sentence: If I wouldn’t develop plug-ins I wanted to be an…. (astronaut, policeman etc…)
Running a software company is a fulltime job. I would be happy i’d get some vacation. :-/ I wanted to be a dog. Most dogs got a very relaxed life.

Hahaha. You’re right. They get food for free and could be lazy the whole day – yeah being a dog, must be very easy. Now let’s tell us a funny story or something what you always wanted to say, to all the Noizefield readers.
Tone2 Electra2 contains a set of burp and fart sounds. They were recorded by a friend. He needed several bottles of beer and two microphones:

(What a funny video!) We want to thank all paying Tone2 customers! They fund the development of the products and pay us for the work that we do. We also want to say big thanks to all people who supported our work!

That’s true. Every product is taking a lot of developing-time – that’s what users should respect and support much more. Thank you so much for taking time to this interview. If you want to get more informations and buy some of those forthcoming tools like Saurus 2 or Electra 2.1 or other actual tools from Tone2, just take a look to this homepage.