Why am I forced to pay full price for NIK6 when my NIK5 is less than a year old?

I bought NIK5 last November and now less than a year later I’m being asked to pay full price again for an upgraded version that, while there are some improvements, has remained unchanged for the most part. Most app developers give a year’s grace until another payment is required and even then not many have the nerve to ask for another full payment for the upgraded version. After browsing this forum for the last couple of days I have yet to see DXO give it’s customers a satisfactory answer for it’s reasoning behind this business tactic. I assume it may be, like my first employer liked to say, “we’re not in the business of (insert your particular industry here), we’re in the business of making as much money as we can”. I think having to pay twice for a slightly improved software in less than a year is going too far.

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You should be entitled to the upgrade price. Did you log in to your account and try to upgrade from there? Most software vendors I know of do not give you a full years grace on charging you for an upgrade after a new version of their software is released, although there may be some who do.


You don’t have to pay. It’s no subscription and you can stick to what you’ve got as long as it lasts.

This gets brought up quite regularly in this forum. I think it’s important to take emotion out of the equation and consider the facts:

  • DxO isn’t requiring that you buy Nik 6 now. Just as you weren’t required to buy Nik 5 in November or many months earlier when it was first released. If you expected Nik Collection 5 to get new features after its release, I don’t know why. DxO usually only provides minor tweaks and bug fixes after a major release. If that changes with Nik Collection 6, great - I’ll take things as they come.

  • You can wait until November to buy Nik 6 and a year will have passed. Plus you might get a bigger discount on Black Friday.

  • I, too, believe you’re mistaken about DxO charging you full price. If you bought Nik 5 legally through DxO, you should be able to get Nik 6 for an upgrade price. Just look in your store account via dxo.com. If you think something’s wrong, go to support.dxo.com and open a ticket.

  • Yes, DxO doesn’t change the whole suite between Nik Collection releases. They only change one or two applications. Plus bug fixes can take years. My suggestion is unless the money doesn’t matter to you, don’t upgrade. Wait another year or two. Or find another software solution.

(I have Nik Collection 4 and am not ready to upgrade due to unfixed bugs. I’m very unhappy with how the Nik Collection has “progressed” so I continue to wait.)

Of course I’m not forced to pay. It’s the ethics of requiring extra payment for a few improvements when the original purchase is only months old that gets me. For most software the practice is the original payment covers a year of updates and at the end of that year if you want to continue getting updates another fee, usually but not always, less than the full amount is required. Fair and reasonable to my mind. While I know that there is nothing that holds DXO to this practice, if no one speaks up and complains when they feel something is not right, well they deserve what they get. Really there is nothing to stop DXO from making more tweaks to NIK a few months from now and asking for another payment It was suggested to me by a colleague at work that I piggyback on her NIK6 since it can be loaded onto more than one computer but that’s not the point. If everyone took this route or worse we all used cracked software can you imagine the mess we’d be in? Both developers and end users would be the losers. What I’m suggesting is a more fair way of dealing with upgrades for those who’ve purchased DXO software within the last year. I apologize in advance if that seems unreasonable.

Since you mention ethics: DxO has never followed the update practice you attribute to “most software” so why were you expecting it? I agree that would be a better model in the case of the Nik Collection, but there isn’t a precedent for it other than someone else using it. And piggybacking on another’s purchase isn’t exploiting a loophole, it’s violating the terms of the software license which is what one actually purchases (rather than the software itself). That isn’t DxO doing wrong, it’s customers doing wrong. Customers need to understand this. I believe DxO can do a much better job setting customers’ expectations and explaining its policies prior to sale, but the info is readily available to more cautious buyers.

I’m quite sure the right avenue for letting DxO know how you feel is support.dxo.com.

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Hey, a shout out to mwsilvers. I did check my account and see that I can get a discount on NIK6. Thanks for pointing that out. It still doesn’t change my mind about DXO’s business plan. Cheers mw.


My main app is Lightroom and I was not amused when Adobe switched to subscription. Meanwhile, I’ve come to like the subscription somehow, specially in view of the possibility to get a year for not quite 90.- on Black Friday…and that is for Lr and Photoshop.

I’ve installed PhotoLab versions 1 to 6 on macOS Monterey and all run properly, except DPL 1, which has a few annoyances. I install/remove the Nik Collection repeatedly to check the progress of its transition to wherever that will lead, and I always get the impression that it will take another few years until completion.

Many people I know don’t agree with DxO’s pricing and upgrade policy, and some simply get the upgrade because they use the apps and like what they do. Whatever our need and choice might be, life gets easier when we find peace instead of fighting the unfightable. And we can all “vote with our wallets”.

@JPhil Hi,

I fully understand what you mean!

It should be clear and stated on the DXO website that when you purchase a license it’s only for that particular version and also show the upgrade cycle dates! (for example Photolab 6 to 7 = November to November)

I purchased PhotoLab 6 just a week ago to find out that in 2, 3 months the next version Photolab 7 is here and when I want that version I have to pay a upgrade fee. Fair enough if I was informed about this when I bought the license I could have made the decision to wait a couple of months.

(I still have Capture One 23 so no problem to wait a couple of months!)

Think this information needs to be showed on the DXO website next to the price of the license!


Browsing around, I found no site that simply lists DxO’s release dates, but searching for “duo announces” brought up the respective news including the release dates. Looking back does not guarantee that DxO won’t change the cycles or dates, but we can get at least a rough idea about DxO’s release cycles.

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