I fell in love with Geist 1 almost straight away because of its logical, intuitive workflow. I barely needed to read the manual, although I did anyway (and it's top notch). It's not a perfect plugin - small interface, fiddly browser, certain limitations etc. But for putting beats and samples together in a drum machine type workflow, no other software beats it.
And so like many others I waited for Geist 2 with baited breath. Took part in the threads on the fxpansion forum, soaked up every last snippet of information and preview screenshot until I was almost bursting with excitement. Naturally, when it was released, I yelled "TAKE MY MONEY" and got the thing installed ASAP.
This was many months ago. I'm still not using the thing in my projects, and I find myself going back to Geist 1 for all my drum sequencing needs.
Geist 2 is a huge step down from Geist 1 in terms of design and usability. Sure, they've crammed a lot more features in there, some of them quite useful, but they have screwed up the GUI and the workflow so badly that I find it a real PITA to use. So many bad design decisions in the thing.
For starters, you now get 64 pads. Yay! But when chopping beats using the slicer, you can't limit the number of pads used. In Geist 1, a loop containing more than 16 hits would have the extra hits layered on other pads. Apart from anything, setting those pads to round robin would result in some nice unexpected variations, and you always have the power to "force" a layer if desired. In Geist 2, it will spread all of the hits across the 64 pads. I'm sure that's great for some people, but personally I find working with any more than 16 rows in a step sequencer to be a nightmare, especially since you can only fit 16 rows on screen at once and you have to select which group of 16 with its ABCD selector. This is a workflow nightmare for chopping and rearranging slices into beats! I like that they've given us the option of so many pads, but quite frankly if I need more than 16 pads for something then I'll just start using another engine. A 64 row step sequencer is just horrible to work with.
But it's just so many other little things as well - for instance the way they've organized the mixing screens, not having a global swing control, moving FX around in the FX slots - all of it is a step down from Geist 1 in terms of usability. And then there's the pattern editor. In Geist 1, if you copied a pattern from one slot to another, the new one would be named something like "Copy of Pattern 1." In Geist 2, if you move pattern 1 to slot 2 then it's named "Pattern 1" exactly as the first one. So in terms of names, you have nothing to differentiate the 2 unless you manually rename them (a pain). In the song editor, this becomes a nightmare as both the original pattern and its copy (which you probably modified) will have the exact same name in the song arranger. Geist 1 just used the pattern number in the song editor, regardless of its name.
It's like almost every "improvement" was decided upon by people who don't use the program. When I first complained about this stuff, people said "give it time, you just have to get used to it." And believe me, I've tried. Every new project I start I think "OK so let's get some Geist 2 going here." Every time I end up thinking "well this sucks" because of so many annoying little issues that really shouldn't have been issues.
I'd love to hear how others are getting along with it. Did you find you had to compromise your workflow somewhat? Do you find it irritating to use as compared to Geist 1?