Is It Just Me?

Discussions about anything analog, digital, MIDI, synth technology, techniques, theories and more.
Ashe37
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 3807
Joined: Mon Jan 19, 2009 3:43 pm
Real name: Unpronounceable
Gear: Ensoniq SD-1/32,SQR,VFX,ESQm
Virus Indigo, M3-61 , MS2000BR, Volca Bass
Emu XL-7, Matrix 6r
TG-33, K3m, Blofeld, Micron, Mopho, BS II, JV-1080
Band: Eridani V
Location: Central VA

Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by Ashe37 » Fri Sep 16, 2011 1:51 pm

I daresay the markup in this business segment is not 50%. Anyone who tried to do a 50% markup in consumer electronics is now consigned to the ash heap of history.

User avatar
tekkentool
Synth Explorer
Synth Explorer
Posts: 3218
Joined: Fri Jun 26, 2009 10:51 am
Real name: Steve
Gear: Lasers (ส้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้ ωส้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้)
Band: none currently
Location: Sydney, australia.(I moved)

Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by tekkentool » Fri Sep 16, 2011 2:03 pm

I dunno, audio gear over here cost 3x the amount it does in the United states and our dollar is stronger.

700 dollar interface = 2100.

550 dollar microphone = 1400.

400 dollar microkorg = 1200.

There's has to be some extreme markup somewhere in there.

User avatar
Hybrid88
Synth Explorer
Synth Explorer
Posts: 2251
Joined: Sat Jan 17, 2009 8:26 am
Gear: V-Synth, and other stuff...
Location: Australia

Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by Hybrid88 » Fri Sep 16, 2011 2:40 pm

Yes new prices are a bit crazy here, problem is mostly with the lack of competition in the wholsalers, they take their big slice of the pie and then that gets added onto whatever the music store gets - and they wonder why we shop overseas?!

Don't get me wrong I'm all for local business, but only if I get decent customer service and I can say that is getting all too rare these days in Aus.
Last edited by Hybrid88 on Fri Sep 16, 2011 2:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
samuraipizzacat29
Supporting Member!
Supporting Member!
Posts: 819
Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2011 6:40 pm
Real name: Nate

Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by samuraipizzacat29 » Fri Sep 16, 2011 2:42 pm

consumer electronics is not equal to musical instruments. When guitar center just gives away 10% on coupons and trade-ins, they've got to be in the 50+ range of markup to afford the kind of overhead it takes to run a store like that.

plus, as a more direct answer: when I bought my venom ($550) I assumed they'd have hardly anything in it at that price, but I still brought my coupons, traded something small etc to try my darndest to drive the price down. Till it was all said and done I paid like $450 +tax and in conversation with the manager I said something like "man I did pretty good today, did you make anything on me?" and he responded with something in the line of "errrr, you'd be surprised what we have in these things".
As a general rule in a store like that, I never pay more than 10% less than the sticker price. In most departments just ask: "can you do any better on that?" and they'll drop 10%. I bought the little korg nano controllers for $20-25 less than sticker price. nearly half...... Guitar center will negotiate anything. They don't want you to leave without buying something. I don't intend to take away anyone's livelihood, everyone deserves to make a buck. Yet, I'm just helping them sell to me for the price I want to buy it for..... ;)

contrarily, hard drives in staples are marked up about 20-25% for the non-sale price. when they're on sale and their prices finally match online retailers, there's only about 5-7% on them (which is a loss for anyone that needs to pay electricity and employees). now that's consumer electronics.

so, going back to manufacturing, r&d, retail rules etc, I'd say there's no possible way that venom cost more than $200 in raw materials. I'd say more like $70-100 at most in raw materials means they have to sell it at about $300 to make $, which puts us right in the realm of what guitar center must pay for them. That's why they cut so many corners on that rig in particular. Add a few more knobs, a better lcd and all of a sudden you've priced yourself out of the "we're trying to make a splash in a new market" market.

or at least that's what I opine about the subject. I think it's at least worth something considering I run a retail business that's attached to a manufacturing facility that makes construction supplies. A loads more competitive business than synthesizers....... :)

User avatar
HideawayStudio
Supporting Member!
Supporting Member!
Posts: 1387
Joined: Fri Jan 09, 2009 10:41 pm
Real name: Dan Wilson
Gear: 163 tubes in a large wooden box!
Band: Shortwave
Location: UK
Contact:

Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by HideawayStudio » Fri Sep 16, 2011 3:43 pm

Nobody in their right mind would design something as expensive as 2600 or Omni clone and then expect to sell it through a distributor - this is why many boutique products are (successfully!) sold directly and often to order.

The two markets are very different and to be tackled in very different ways. A boutique manufacturer will get the volumes high enough on subassemblies where it really makes a difference in scales of economy eg. bare pcbs, moulded components and some components by purchasing stock, often in advance of orders (at risk) and everything else would be bought in and used as and when demand is there - very different the modern, pile it high and run on alarmingly low/risky margins tactics on large batches after factoring in distribution, approach.

In many ways it's an utter tragedy the synth business has been sucked into the commercial high volume mentality - this is what's been killing innovative, unusual and highly creative new products for years now as the bigger companies couldn't be bothered and the smaller companies couldn't compete. Thankfully, in some ways, things have gotten a little better in the last few years - we definitely hit rock bottom when the big 3 realised they could churn out the same tiresome S+S gear built around a handful of custom VLSI chips over and over again and since mostly Jo blogs was purchasing it in sufficient volume they'd somehow forgotten about those professionals/enthusiasts who wanted something new and inspiring with character (in other words the bean counters took over - yet again!).

The biggest tragedy of all is that the public are now brain washed into thinking everything electronic is dirt cheap forgetting just how much pain to develop, financial risk and often surprisingly low profit margins (if any!!) these large manufacturers are running on. We've reached the point were children throw "old" phones in the trash with more computing power on board than 100 Fairlight CMI Series II's with little care or concern about the sheer pain that went into their design. The mobile phone industry has taken this mentality to pretty much clinically insane levels and has warped the entire industry.

User avatar
samuraipizzacat29
Supporting Member!
Supporting Member!
Posts: 819
Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2011 6:40 pm
Real name: Nate

Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by samuraipizzacat29 » Fri Sep 16, 2011 3:59 pm

Fully agreed on all accounts. The difference in culture between musicians/artists and real life companies is that people that are artists primarily want to create, and the second thought is that it might be nice to make a buck in the process. Whereas companies want to create a dollar any way they can. (this we know). They have 1000s of machines that need to keep turning out product, so they need to make products to sell to 1000s of people.

I think it's really awesome when someone makes/designs something on their own. Look at the shruthi-1's and meeblips of the world. They're great! The problem I'm pointing out is there's just no way to make it profitable unless you have all the know-how on your own. In which case, I'll take 3 :)

I guess where I get confused is we're looking at products that were mass produced at their time and saying we'd like to recreate them. So, I immediately go into mass production mode. If you're talking about not caring if anyone actually buys them, then the price level/market is arbitrary. Heck, I'd love to make my own polysynth, I just know zilch about programming. Otherwise, with the tools of today's marketplace, we should have everything we need on a personal level to do just about anythiing we want.

User avatar
b3groover
Senior Member
Senior Member
Posts: 965
Joined: Thu Apr 10, 2008 7:41 am
Real name: Jim
Band: THEO
Location: Lansing, MI
Contact:

Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by b3groover » Fri Sep 16, 2011 5:21 pm

I'm surprised, actually, thank someone hasn't bought the ARP name. It seems like a no-brainer with the huge interest in classic analog synthesis these days.

I'm also surprised Moog isn't making modules again.

User avatar
Cumulus
Supporting Member!
Supporting Member!
Posts: 1834
Joined: Mon Aug 17, 2009 8:48 pm
Band: Cumulus

Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by Cumulus » Fri Sep 16, 2011 6:58 pm

The phone comment reminded me of an experience this past weekend. I got a new phone and there was trouble with it.

Believe it or not I still used my antique Motorola RAZR until a few weeks ago when it finally died.
Incidentally, I have carried a cell phone since about 1991 when they were huge analog monsters (they sounded warmer back then, BTW....).

At any rate, I'm standing there in the phone kiosk at a big box store (my second trip in as many days to fix the same problem with my new phone) and they have a "handset recycling bin". I was just thinking that I should jus find a used RAZOR somewhere and use it for a couple more years and I spot a brand-new looking RAZOR in the recycling bin. It powered up (no SIM card, of course) and it did not have a scratch on it.
I wanted to just pocket the thing and be done with it but: a) They probably would have pinched me for shoplifting and, b) It was hot pink.

I did ask the guy what they do with their recycled handsets and he said they send them off. He couldn't sell it to me or look the other way while I nabbed it, which is all ok since I really don't want to carry around a pink phone.

Synths are a very different product than consumer electronics. I think at some point during the 80's the big companies decided to start treating them like any other consumer electronic device and many mass-produced synths have suffered as a result.

User avatar
Seracs
Newbie
Newbie
Posts: 28
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2010 12:35 pm

Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by Seracs » Wed Sep 21, 2011 2:11 am

HideawayStudio wrote:Nobody in their right mind would design something as expensive as 2600 or Omni clone and then expect to sell it through a distributor - this is why many boutique products are (successfully!) sold directly and often to order.

The two markets are very different and to be tackled in very different ways. A boutique manufacturer will get the volumes high enough on subassemblies where it really makes a difference in scales of economy eg. bare pcbs, moulded components and some components by purchasing stock, often in advance of orders (at risk) and everything else would be bought in and used as and when demand is there - very different the modern, pile it high and run on alarmingly low/risky margins tactics on large batches after factoring in distribution, approach.

In many ways it's an utter tragedy the synth business has been sucked into the commercial high volume mentality - this is what's been killing innovative, unusual and highly creative new products for years now as the bigger companies couldn't be bothered and the smaller companies couldn't compete. Thankfully, in some ways, things have gotten a little better in the last few years - we definitely hit rock bottom when the big 3 realised they could churn out the same tiresome S+S gear built around a handful of custom VLSI chips over and over again and since mostly Jo blogs was purchasing it in sufficient volume they'd somehow forgotten about those professionals/enthusiasts who wanted something new and inspiring with character (in other words the bean counters took over - yet again!).

The biggest tragedy of all is that the public are now brain washed into thinking everything electronic is dirt cheap forgetting just how much pain to develop, financial risk and often surprisingly low profit margins (if any!!) these large manufacturers are running on. We've reached the point were children throw "old" phones in the trash with more computing power on board than 100 Fairlight CMI Series II's with little care or concern about the sheer pain that went into their design. The mobile phone industry has taken this mentality to pretty much clinically insane levels and has warped the entire industry.
It's possible to get innovative new things, just look at the modular world. It's not always apparent but who needs big companies to be creative?

User avatar
Stab Frenzy
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 9723
Joined: Tue Jun 06, 2006 5:41 pm
Gear: Eurorack, RYTM, Ultranova, many FX
Location: monster island*
Contact:

Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by Stab Frenzy » Wed Sep 21, 2011 2:33 am

tekkentool wrote:I dunno, audio gear over here cost 3x the amount it does in the United states and our dollar is stronger.

700 dollar interface = 2100.

550 dollar microphone = 1400.

400 dollar microkorg = 1200.

There's has to be some extreme markup somewhere in there.
You're obviously shopping at the wrong places. There's less competition in the big shops so they're fairly expensive but I've managed most of my gear at comparable prices to OS. In fact the place I'm looking at getting an RME Fireface UFX from has FF400s for less than I've seen anywhere online, including the US.

User avatar
tekkentool
Synth Explorer
Synth Explorer
Posts: 3218
Joined: Fri Jun 26, 2009 10:51 am
Real name: Steve
Gear: Lasers (ส้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้ ωส้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้้)
Band: none currently
Location: Sydney, australia.(I moved)

Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by tekkentool » Wed Sep 21, 2011 2:44 am

Online stores? the only local stores here are both fairly pathetic in regard to pricing. (they're the ones giving me those quotes).

User avatar
Hybrid88
Synth Explorer
Synth Explorer
Posts: 2251
Joined: Sat Jan 17, 2009 8:26 am
Gear: V-Synth, and other stuff...
Location: Australia

Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by Hybrid88 » Wed Sep 21, 2011 12:01 pm

Yep, there are a few good online stores in Aus like Awave and Sound Devices, they're both super easy to organise and are happy to ship stuff here, you'd have to be clinically insane to go local in Tas for synths, drumsticks and guitar strings sure, but forget anything technical.

I was in my local shop last year and just for kicks I thought I'd ask how much for an A6 Andromeda - the price even took the salesman aback :lol:

User avatar
Stab Frenzy
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 9723
Joined: Tue Jun 06, 2006 5:41 pm
Gear: Eurorack, RYTM, Ultranova, many FX
Location: monster island*
Contact:

Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by Stab Frenzy » Wed Sep 21, 2011 1:26 pm

tekkentool wrote:Online stores? the only local stores here are both fairly pathetic in regard to pricing. (they're the ones giving me those quotes).
My local stores are Awave (kind of expensive usually, sometimes cheap), Factory Sound (super cheap) and Soundcorp (pretty cheap). Turramusic also does really good prices if you give them a call.

User avatar
pflosi
Synth Explorer
Synth Explorer
Posts: 3620
Joined: Tue Nov 13, 2007 6:14 pm
Gear: more than 150 characters...
Location: zürich
Contact:

Re: Is It Just Me?

Post by pflosi » Wed Sep 21, 2011 4:20 pm

HideawayStudio wrote:In many ways it's an utter tragedy the synth business has been sucked into the commercial high volume mentality - this is what's been killing innovative, unusual and highly creative new products for years now...
That holds true for so many businesses, and other stuff like science, art, etc. I'd be fairly happy if it only was the synth business...

SCNR

Post Reply