If you want to see a software company's dirty underwear, go to the user forum. Folks hardly ever write in to express how pleased they are with their purchase. Having been on both ends of this equation – both as the user with a problem and the tech support guy with all the users’ problems – I can say that one should take what one finds on the forums with a grain of salt. If your particular problem precisely matches a problem in a thread that has a lot of replies and reads, something is likely to get solved if the company cares at all. If there are a lot of questions that nobody, tech support or other users, wants to answer, be wary.
We spent several hours reading the Tunebite forum, and it’s the usual mix. Some folks have unique problems that are slowly and painfully addressed, and some folks have top forty problems that are easy to deal with.
One common aspect that we noticed is that the first question asked after a performance issue is stated is, “What CPU do you have?"
This is understandable. Video capture and transcoding are very CPU-intensive processes. Trying to save to DVD-standard quality, especially if the video is already somewhat near there, is not easy. If the PC is not of the latest generation, often trying a lesser quality or size is the cure.
We did not sample tech support directly. Having been there, done that, I don’t feel it’s fair to write and ask, “How fast do you answer?"
We did find about an equal number in the forum fussing about tech support and saying that tech support fixed their problem. Some of them were very interesting. One user said that turning off his Windows task-bar solved his video recording problem.