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Orb
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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


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Look at a better example, the latest and greatest computer has alawys cost around $2,000, yet Moores law clearly states that performance doubles every 18 months, The price of the high end stays consistant in just about every other market, why should hifi suddenely get away with moving that price point to a 3 to 5 times what it was relative to the market ( forget absolute dollars )

Apart from high end computers also cost a fortune, I think your making assumptions about price here, just like high end audio (not talking about the Lexicon behaviour type of high end).
If you mean high end computers, just look at the price for the latest high performance motherboards - Asus Rampage-extreme/etc.
I will bet none of us are using them at home because of their costs and they are not value for money.
Same can be said for all high end latest DDR3 memory, latest multi core/top speed processors, latest graphics cards,etc.
The reality is most of these components are marginal improvements over the best mid end which you can buy at the price you say, but the high end is different.

And we are ignoring the high end servers and eye watering mainframes that still exist.

Edit:
And one important difference, the business model for computers and their components means they can drive lower prices due to customer footprint and quantity they sell, which drives manufacturing/logistics costs considerably down, meaning better ROI.

Cheers
Orb

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


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It should also be noted that the reviewer later admitted that he had done some recalibration of his display between viewing the Lex and the Oppo. Or, at least, he says so.

A reviewer who changes something else in his system in addition to the product being tested has no business being a published reviewer.

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


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Quote:
The HTR review was before the scandal... So it is not a case that HTR is now attempting to defend Lexicon after the scandal... I severely doubt that the HTR reviewer would have released that review if the scandal had already broken... he would have done some proper investigation rather than just saying: black levels are different and transport is less noisy...

It should also be noted that the reviewer later admitted that he had done some recalibration of his display between viewing the Lex and the Oppo. Or, at least, he says so.

Kal

Which essentially means that after the scandal broke and the reviewer got hit hard in the comments section of HTR, he backtracked from one of his earlier findings...

The problem for him is that such a backtrack does not really make his case any better... he still comes off as being totally incompetent...

Editor
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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


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Look at a better example, the latest and greatest computer has alawys cost around $2,000, yet Moores law clearly states that performance doubles every 18 months, The price of the high end stays consistant in just about every other market, why should hifi suddenely get away with moving that price point to a 3 to 5 times what it was relative to the market ( forget absolute dollars )

Apart from high end computers also cost a fortune, I think your making assumptions about price here, just like high end audio.

It's also an invalid comparison because there is not much in high-end audio that benefits from falling parts costs due to something akin to Moore's Law.

Anything large and heavy will always be expensive to manufacture and expensive to transport and requires expensive shipping materials - for a mid-priced loudspeaker, the packaging materials cost as much as the cabinet, I was once told.

Anything that requires extensive tooling will be expensive - I am told that Wilson wears out a $180 cutting tool on its CNC machine with the work for every MAXX cabinet, which is fabricated from panels of high-density reinforced phenolic-resin polymer.

Anything that uses resources that are in short supply will be expensive. For example, the Alnico magnets that were customary in high-end speakers 40-50 years ago are almost too expensive to use today, even in very expensive speakers; the rare-earth magnets used in most high-end loudspeakers are going to continue to increase in costs as the world's demand increases due to their use in hybrid car engines and starts to outstrip supply. Some semiconductor devices that optimal for audio are in very short supply, particularly low-noise JFETs, so high-end audio manufacturers are stockpiling them, which adds to their capital investment, hence ultimate product price.

By constrast, the raw materials for a computer are basically plastic for the case and sand for the semiconductors and glass, with as little copper and aluminum as the manufacturer can get away with. :-)

On the other hand, although the $1000/pair speaker from 20 years ago now costs $2000/pair, it will outperform the $2000/pair speaker from 20 years ago, despite its inflation-adjusted parts cost being lower.

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

Orb
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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

Although my point is the high end computer never does drop in price, because each iteration is still expensive.
The older high end models become cheap, as do mid technology, but again this could be argued a reflection to high end audio (e.g. selling off previous model lines).

In a way Moore's Law should not be used as it was because it does not fully reflect real world.
Good example from wiki that matches my own experience working for a high tech manufacturing company.

Quote:
Relation to manufacturing costs
As the cost of computer power to the consumer falls, the cost for producers to fulfill Moore's law follows an opposite trend: R&D, manufacturing, and test costs have increased steadily with each new generation of chips. Rising manufacturing costs are an important consideration for the sustaining of Moore's law.[31] This had led to the formulation of "Moore's second law", which is that the capital cost of a semiconductor fab also increases exponentially over time

I appreciate the context you may be coming from is that you get more for your money today than in the past when it comes to computers.
But you could argue the same about audio equipment, in terms of Moore's Law audio equipment measures more superior today than in the past, more watts now than in the past, and in some cases a potential leap forward such as the latest Class D digital amps.

So the comparison technically does stand, but I think the discussion is comparing high end.
The top end home user based motherboards are over 5x more expensive than basic motherboards ($300 compared to $50), the true specialist application orientated motherboards/GPUs are in a total different league in terms of costs.
Consider the pro orientated graphics cards for rendering/etc, which cost as much as a complete mid-fi system, if not more for the top of the range versions.

Just curious, taking the general high end audio (not the statement products that are 50k+ components), has the audio prices been increasing dramatically over the last 10 years?

Also Moore's Law is driven by massive demand and technological needs, which has a much greater scale of economies compared to audio that is becoming niche if putting aside the lower end MP3 consumer demand.
The more niche audio becomes the higher the cost is, will be interesting to see how this pans out long term.

Thats my take on it, and I appreciate there are many angles that can be argued for/against when using Moore's Law, which why I am not sure it should had been used by WelshHifi in the 1st place TBH.

Thanks
Orb

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

Someone mentioned the Mu Fi Supercharger as part of this discussion and described it as part of a group of examples of "bad" or 'failed' products.

Terrific example.

MF, likely the most fearless and, in his reviews, least defensive (I mean this as a compliment to him)of prominent reviewers gave it a category A rating. Then, EL wrote a review describing how he was nonplussed.

Who was right?

Does choosing a side require one reviewer be considered incompetent?

MF loves the caliburn table, an AS reviewer thinks it's not very good.

We saw this argument about competence in EL's Totem review, too.

When there is a disagreement between reviewers, which one is incompetent?

If we are going to declare the Oppo and Lexicon units identical, and identify a reviewer who makes note of differences between them "incompetent," then when will we allow for differences to be identified?

This Oppo/Lexicon thing sits atop a slippery damn slope!

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

Orb

You make some good points but then you lose all credibility by stating that Class D is a progressive technology. The simple reason class D exists is because it allows companies to make a power amplifier at much lower cost, there is absolutely nothing about class D which is acoustically superior to traditional class A or AB amplifiers, it just use less power. Ask any engineer about any switched mode device and they will instantly prefer a traditional ferro based product.

Alan

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

Ajani

The point im trying to make is that there is absolutely no good reason except price gouging why the 3 year range of kit should not cost 6 months. There is no difference in the materials generally.

I just dont seen why the market should have a step shift in price range for no good reason.

Alan

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

You're absolutely correct about high end processors and GPU's. The latest PCI Express display card I acquired for gaming runs around $600 (NVidea GX2 9800). It's not the most expensive either.

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

Do you know a lot about the new class D digital amps, specifically the new Nad?
How about Lyngdorf?
Neither of these are cheap to build true digital amps, I can name a few other bespoke digital design amps and again they are not cheap.
I wonder if your just thinking about OEM Icepower.

Thanks
Orb

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


Quote:
Someone mentioned the Mu Fi Supercharger as part of this discussion and described it as part of a group of examples of "bad" or 'failed' products.

Terrific example.

MF, likely the most fearless and, in his reviews, least defensive (I mean this as a compliment to him)of prominent reviewers gave it a category A rating. Then, EL wrote a review describing how he was nonplussed.

Who was right?

Does choosing a side require one reviewer be considered incompetent?

MF loves the caliburn table, an AS reviewer thinks it's not very good.

We saw this argument about competence in EL's Totem review, too.

When there is a disagreement between reviewers, which one is incompetent?

If we are going to declare the Oppo and Lexicon units identical, and identify a reviewer who makes note of differences between them "incompetent," then when will we allow for differences to be identified?

This Oppo/Lexicon thing sits atop a slippery damn slope!

Musical Fidelity is an interesting point that was raised earlier, specifically in terms of high end and their Titan amp.
But continue with the Musical Fidelity example and you have the Supercharger 750k, at launch half the price of the current Titan.
While still expensive 10k for this amp is not what can be termed as excessive or indicative of high end at its worse, in fact I think it reflects good on high end.
I think WelshHifi (and this is not an accusation or attack) sees the Titan as a con due it what is perceived by some as crazy pricing and hence Musical Fidelity is a high end con.
But in reality the Titan is a company statement amp that is going all out in terms of performance and subjective audio quality.
In other words their finest engineered product that will never and is not intended be mass produced (considering the niche of audio the ROI for such a product is terrible).

Hey good points about reviews and yeah ties in with the very recent history we have seen.
But the difference in this case is that the Lexicon is an Oppo BD-83 apart from possibly the firmware which Lexicon states "7.1 MC-12 firmware update".

So I do think in general reviewers can be right even though they disagree on some aspects, each reviewer will have a subtly different baseline reference and preference.

But the Lexico-Oppo IMO is inexcusable, with the Hardon management it seems always intending for this setup (going back to their comments Sept '09), which makes it even more incredible.

Edit:
Regarding my comment about reviewers, this is limited to the better ones (which I accept is err loose to say the least ), common sense can show the bad ones.

Cheers
Orb

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


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You're absolutely correct about high end processors and GPU's. The latest PCI Express display card I acquired for gaming runs around $600 (NVidea GX2 9800). It's not the most expensive either.

Yeah.
And the price of the pro orientated GPUs is eye watering, its like 4x to 5x the price of the current top home GPUs.
As a quick example here is one of the cards at a cost of $2.8k, if I wanted to I could find more expensive cards that are niche (which can be said of high end audio).
http://www.coremicro.com/catalog/pny-nvidia-quadro-fx-5600-15gb-pcie-video-card-p-349.html

Same can be said for the top range high performance DDR3 memory,CPUs,etc.
Their high end is 5x or more the cost of what we generally use or think of in computing, and for the niche computer components it is even higher.

But I digress from the main topic, hopefully though this shows that high end computing is not cheap or even value for money even though the economy of scale exists more in this sector than audio.
Back to naughty boys Lexicon discussion I hope
Not how they reflect all high end and means high end is a con, which IMO is using too many assumptions and to me is not the case.

Cheers
Orb

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

Orb

To my knowledge there is no such thing as a digital amplifier, the D in class D has nothing to do with digital its just a coincidence.

To be more accurate i believe both of the designs you bring up are PWM or pulse width modulation amplfiers.

Alan

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i
Orb
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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

Yes they are PWM hence class D, they are also digital amps due to the input to output of these amps being different to other class D amps such as those using OEM Icepower.
Read more about digital amps or look closer to both of these amps designs.
What makes both these amps interesting apart from the digital design is one uses negative feedback (NAD), while the other does not (Lyngdorf).

Thanks
Orb

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

I notice Mark Levinson has just released their first SACD player no 512, anyone know what inside this?
Not suggesting this is the same as Lexicon, but how could the Harmon group management consider what they did when Mark Levinson was also developing a player (appreciate this is 2-channel SACD only though), and I wonder if there was a reason for Mark Levinson to avoid the Bluray.
Just curious as it is also part of the Harmon group.

Thanks
Orb

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

What makes them digital ?

Digital refers to 1 or 0, you cant make a 1 bigger ?

Alan

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


Quote:
Ajani

The point im trying to make is that there is absolutely no good reason except price gouging why the 3 year range of kit should not cost 6 months. There is no difference in the materials generally.

I just dont seen why the market should have a step shift in price range for no good reason.

Alan

That assumes that the gear at 3 years uses the same materials as the gear at 6 months... which I highly doubt is always the case... I am sure that some manufacturers will attempt to sell relatively cheap costing stuff at extreme prices... but I don't accept that all (or even most) of the gear over 6 months is just using the same parts...

Unless you have actually taken apart those products and compared their parts to gear at 6 months, then you are really only guessing that they use similarly priced parts...

I'm sure some brands can more easily justify their selling price in terms of cost of materials than others, but to say that none of them can justify their prices is mere speculation...

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


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What makes them digital ?

Unlike a conventional class-D amplifier, the NAD and Lyngdorf amplifiers don't have any analog amplification circuitry ahead of the output switching MOSFETs. Instead, the incoming PCM data are decimated directly to a bitstream that can control the duty cycle of the output switchers. I discuss this in my forthcoming review of the NAD M2 in the March issue.

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


Quote:

Quote:
Ajani

The point im trying to make is that there is absolutely no good reason except price gouging why the 3 year range of kit should not cost 6 months. There is no difference in the materials generally.

I just dont seen why the market should have a step shift in price range for no good reason.

Alan

That assumes that the gear at 3 years uses the same materials as the gear at 6 months... which I highly doubt is always the case... I am sure that some manufacturers will attempt to sell relatively cheap costing stuff at extreme prices... but I don't accept that all (or even most) of the gear over 6 months is just using the same parts...

Unless you have actually taken apart those products and compared their parts to gear at 6 months, then you are really only guessing that they use similarly priced parts...

I'm sure some brands can more easily justify their selling price in terms of cost of materials than others, but to say that none of them can justify their prices is mere speculation...

Isn't one of the elements of price the skill of the designer that went into the product ?

Of course, this doesn't apply to Lexicon, their scam skill appears to exceed their design skill

Orb
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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

Yeah,
Bruno Putzeys mentioned this back in 2004 in an article, he actually thought that digital amp design would probably die out due its technological and cost requirements.
I think he could see Class D evolving, in a way this is true when consider as an example the new Audio Research DSi200 IMO, along with of course the few digital amps.

Cheers
Orb

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


Quote:

Quote:
Someone mentioned the Mu Fi Supercharger as part of this discussion and described it as part of a group of examples of "bad" or 'failed' products.

Terrific example.

MF, likely the most fearless and, in his reviews, least defensive (I mean this as a compliment to him)of prominent reviewers gave it a category A rating. Then, EL wrote a review describing how he was nonplussed.

Who was right?

Does choosing a side require one reviewer be considered incompetent?

MF loves the caliburn table, an AS reviewer thinks it's not very good.

We saw this argument about competence in EL's Totem review, too.

When there is a disagreement between reviewers, which one is incompetent?

If we are going to declare the Oppo and Lexicon units identical, and identify a reviewer who makes note of differences between them "incompetent," then when will we allow for differences to be identified?

This Oppo/Lexicon thing sits atop a slippery damn slope!

Musical Fidelity is an interesting point that was raised earlier, specifically in terms of high end and their Titan amp.
But continue with the Musical Fidelity example and you have the Supercharger 750k, at launch half the price of the current Titan.
While still expensive 10k for this amp is not what can be termed as excessive or indicative of high end at its worse, in fact I think it reflects good on high end.
I think WelshHifi (and this is not an accusation or attack) sees the Titan as a con due it what is perceived by some as crazy pricing and hence Musical Fidelity is a high end con.
But in reality the Titan is a company statement amp that is going all out in terms of performance and subjective audio quality.
In other words their finest engineered product that will never and is not intended be mass produced (considering the niche of audio the ROI for such a product is terrible).

Hey good points about reviews and yeah ties in with the very recent history we have seen.
But the difference in this case is that the Lexicon is an Oppo BD-83 apart from possibly the firmware which Lexicon states "7.1 MC-12 firmware update".

So I do think in general reviewers can be right even though they disagree on some aspects, each reviewer will have a subtly different baseline reference and preference.

But the Lexico-Oppo IMO is inexcusable, with the Hardon management it seems always intending for this setup (going back to their comments Sept '09), which makes it even more incredible.

Edit:
Regarding my comment about reviewers, this is limited to the better ones (which I accept is err loose to say the least ), common sense can show the bad ones.

Cheers
Orb

There is a Major difference between MF and EL's reviews of the 550K Supercharger and the HTR review of the Lexicon....

MF loved the 550K and thought it was worth a Class A rating, while EL didn't care for the sound of it... Such differences are expected in reviewer's opinions... Class A rating has never meant that every reviewer at Stereophile loves the product.. It merely means that at least one reviewer thought it was worthy of Class A rating... Others might hate the sound of the product...

Why does AD review low powered gear and MF review megawatt amps? Because they each have sonic preferences... Does that make one right and the other wrong? No...

I'm sure MF has not suddenly backtracked on his position that the 550K is a good product, because EL didn't like it...

The HTR reviewer is called incompetent because of how he conducted the review... not because he has a different opinion from audioholics....

First, he attempted to silence the internet rumors that the Lex was just a re-badged Oppo, by comparing black levels and transport noise... By most readers standards, that was never sufficient investigation of the differences... Far more video comparisons should have been made and definitely some audio ones... The Transport being less noisy is unlikely to be regarded as a significant difference by most readers (especially considering the 700% price increase)...

His lack of findings (and evidence of testing) was bad enough to make his review questionable... However, the fact that he subsequently backtracked from his claim of different black levels... based on having re-calibrated his TV between comparisons is incompetent... There is no getting around the fact that he attempted to compare video differences after making a change to his system... Any reviewer doing such would rightfully be called incompetent...

So calling the HTR reviewer incompetent is not a slippery slope and is not similar to the difference of opinion between EL and MF...

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


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The HTR reviewer is called incompetent because of how he conducted the review... not because he has a different opinion from audioholics....

Totally agree, thats why I said my comment was about the good reviewers and its common sense to see who are bad.
I cannot see anyone defending the HTR review apart from the reviewer
As you say this does not reflect the situation of both reviewers being right due to subtle baseline reference and preference differences.
Sadly though I am sure there will be cynics (not meaning you in this) who use the HTR review as an example that all audio journalists are incompetent, which is not the case but shit sticks when its thrown around as they say
Thanks
Orb

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


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I cannot see anyone defending the HTR review apart from the reviewer

And his editor.

Kal

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

We have different ideas about life.

I like to keep my hard earned cash in my pocket, i feel its the manufacturers duty to earn my money. The majority of pepole in the forum are very happy to pay whatever price the manufacturers think of, in fact the higher the better because then the product must be better as it costs 3 times what it used to. It seems as if attacking the higher pricing is a crime, its like im questioning the whole hobby.

Its the only time ive ever come across a press and customer base who actively support cost increases.

Alan

JoeE SP9
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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


Quote:
We have different ideas about life.

I like to keep my hard earned cash in my pocket, i feel its the manufacturers duty to earn my money. The majority of people in the forum are very happy to pay whatever price the manufacturers think of, in fact the higher the better because then the product must be better as it costs 3 times what it used to. It seems as if attacking the higher pricing is a crime, its like I'm questioning the whole hobby.

Its the only time Ive ever come across a press and customer base who actively support cost increases.

Alan

Please don't generalize about how others perceive value or spend their money. Your attitude about how others spend their money is wrong in the first place and none of your business in the second.

Some gear costs a lot and isn't worth it. Some gear is worth whatever you have to pay for it. Some gear is bargain priced. It's up to the buyer to decide what is worth what. Contrary to your assertions most posters here are not stupid ignorant ordinary consumers.
Get off your high horse. You're no better a consumer than anyone else.

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


Quote:
The majority of pepole in the forum are very happy to pay whatever price the manufacturers think of, in fact the higher the better because then the product must be better as it costs 3 times what it used to.

Nonsense.

Most here are pretty aggressive shoppers. In fact, most equipment recommendation questions start with the amount of money the poster has to spend, often quite modest.

We do recognize however that ours is a niche hobby and as a result there is little economy of scale. Thus at times we are paying a greater percentage of R&D, warehouse space, wages, etc. on a per product basis than many other products.

I have an Oppo BD-83. Great critter.

I admit I would be tempted to pay up to $100.00 for the Lexicon front and back plates and external chassis just because heavy, well-machined metal is pleasing.

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


Quote:
We have different ideas about life.

I like to keep my hard earned cash in my pocket, i feel its the manufacturers duty to earn my money. The majority of pepole in the forum are very happy to pay whatever price the manufacturers think of, in fact the higher the better because then the product must be better as it costs 3 times what it used to. It seems as if attacking the higher pricing is a crime, its like im questioning the whole hobby.

Its the only time ive ever come across a press and customer base who actively support cost increases.

Alan

I don't think our ideas are that different in that regards...

It's just that I believe that the decision about the value of a product should be made by the potential purchaser and not you or me...

If I audition a Pair of B&W 804S, I'm the type of person who will also audition the B&W 683 (at one third of the price) to see if the difference is worth it to me... Despite having a budget of $4.5K, I'll easily buy the $1.5K product if I don't think the difference is worth my money...

So if I had $30K to spend on an amplifier, I'd audition a Musical Fidelity Titan critically... inspect build etc... to determine if it is worth the difference over a $10K Supercharger....

Where we differ is that I don't think it's my business to tell everyone else whether the Titan is worth their money... They should decide that on their own... And I also don't see how it makes sense for me to make a determination about the Titan's value when I have never auditioned one and have no idea what the cost of the components inside it is...

Contrary to what you think... we have not all "drunk the hi-fi kool-aid" and empty our wallets with wild abandon... We just choose to reserve accusations of "ripoff" to products for which we have an informed opinion...

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


Quote:
I'm sure MF has not suddenly backtracked on his position that the 550K is a good product, because EL didn't like it...

Indeed, that is true.

I met Michael for the first time two weeks ago in Las Vegas at dinner with JI, KR, JA, and JVS (super fun conversation, btw). Walking back to the hotel after dinner I asked Michael about his experience with the 550k Supercharger. He really still thought it was a good neutral amp and preserved the sound of his low powered tube amp. I told him, as he had already read, that this was not my experience with the amp. We basically looked at each other, shrugged our shoulders and started talking about $5.99 all-you-can-eat prime rib dinners in Las Vegas.

In other words, we had two different experiences with and reactions to the same amp, and there was no use arguing about it. I believe Michael heard what he heard in his context and, at least I think, he respected that I had a different experience.

Would that audiophiles across the globe could allow for other dissimilar audio experiences like Michael and I had.

KBK
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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


Quote:
and started talking about $5.99 all-you-can-eat prime rib dinners in Las Vegas.

On to what really matters!!!

Every time I go to Montreal I have a look at the line up in front of Schwartz's and, Oy! I look around and then look at the time...and go 'meh!' and walk away. Still ain't had that world famous sandwich. And from my Friend JF who has worked in about 40 places of food, booze, both ill and good repute -throughout Montreal... he says that that dang sandwich really IS 'all that'. And more.

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

Ok

I give up, i just do not get it.

Statement system 10 years ago cost approx 6 months, maybe a years salary

Statement system now costs 3 years or more

Yes the one now sounds better but technology and everything else have moved on, manufacturing and material cost are accounted for by general inflation which also is reflected in the salary.

Whichever way you look at we are spending 3 times as much for the same thing relative to the marketplace.

In almost every other field the status quo has been maintained or in a lot of cases reduced.

There is no solid economic logic for these increases other than we are being cheated out of the correct pricing for high end product. We are now limited to second or third string product due to these over inflated prices.

If seeing this makes me an idiot then i guess ill be the lone voice of reason.

Alan

Orb
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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

Well I am sorry if you feel like your being made out to be an idiot, because IMO your not and that is not the purpose of my posts in response or hopefully others.

What I do think though is that your making assumptions, and on a forum where communication is a lot tougher it can come through indicating bias (we all have bias that weigh our decisions so your not alone in this, and in some parts of audio I am the same as are most others posting here).

An example of this is where you say statement audio equipment 10 years ago was at most a years salary.
Now the discussion has recently turned to high end statement and the 20k+ amps,etc.
But looking back it does not match what you say for the true high end statement gear, yes there is equipment for 7k but that can also be found today in high end.
Here is some items over 10 years ago (found using Stereophile reviews on this site - big thanks for keeping this Stereophile):
Loudspeaker:
Wilson Audio Specialties MAXX $39k
Dynaudio Evidence Master $85,000
And at the more reasonable end;
Sony ES SS-M9ED $16,000
Revel Salon $15,500
JMlab Mezzo Utopia $13,000 (not sure this was their statement speaker though)

Amps:
Boulder 2050 monoblock $59,000/pair
Electrocompaniet Nemo monoblock $14,995/pair
Class

Welshsox
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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

Maybe I should have said like 20 years ago !! must be getting older than i thought !!

As a person who works with electronics every day i must admit the concept of hifi as art is a very difficult one to relate. I could never recreate a Monet or write a symphony but it would be easy to build a LARS amp ( sure that will upset someone ).

A typical example of my issues relate to things like class D amps, they have been invented and are being used everywhere else in the audio world as a budget space/power saving technology, if you look at theory there is nothing about it which indicates its a better way of amplifiing from a sound quality point of view. Yet in the hifi world its been bastardized into an excuse to charge more money for things as it is just new, NAD coming out with a $6,000 amp just because it says class D, it just drives me nuts knowing that companies thet make pro audio amps are using the same technology to reduce cost !!! yet the hifi world accepts it driving up costs !! the electronics and theory behind it do not change from one marketplace to the next so why should hifi be different ? the same marketplace economics apply relative to any technology.

Its not just the statement products that are being affected, the NAD being a good example, they would never of dreamed of selling a $6,000 amp but now because the ecomomic spread of the market has become so acceptably wide they feel as if they can get away with it. In other words they make their product fit that price point, years ago they would have looked at the same sound quality but in a less shiny box and aimed to sell it for $1000 - $1500. The market spread is inflating prices at all levels, the more compressed the pricing the smaller the step changes between quality levels, again if you look at the intrinsic values of the products there is nothing to indicate the current wide market spread is vaild. Its just the spreading of all levels and the increased step changes that has me upset, not jealously that i cant afford the $170,000 wilson speakers. The market is being corrupted at the level I do purchase in, $1000 - $4000 a component the NAD a few years ago would have been in my price point, now it is not and this is a direct result of acceptance by the market of high pricing.

Things were good economically for a long period of time and people could afford these high end goods without issue, this has also contributed to the gouging. Maybe now things are getting hard again it will affect the high end pricing. A little natural wastage and belt tightening would be a good thing.
Alan

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

The perceived value of the very high end may be dropping. These prices do continue to rise very quickly. You may be correct that at this end of the market the incremental improvements (if any) do not justify the cost.

However at the low to mid-end here is more and more value. There are astounding products available in all categories at $1,000 and below for example.

Welshsox
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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

Elk

You are correct, i have a system that uses items in that range and it does sound great, i see areas for improvement but the $1000 ish items perform very well, examples i Have are the Marantz TT15, PS Audio GCPH, Anthem 225, all great items and $1000-$1500 a peice, the most expensive item i own is the Esoteric SACD which retails for around $4k.

The value of high end is definetly eroded, one point that i think we can all agree on and is important to make for newcomers is that a well thought out and compatible $15,000 will easily blow away a badly conceived $500,000 system. Once you get to the the high end the differences are small and compatability, rooom matching etc are far more important than how much a peice costs. RMAF made it very clear to me that price was not that big a factor in sound quality and I heard a lot of rooms that were incredilbly expensive that flat out did not sound good to me.
Of course if you can buy the $500,000 system and be in a position to spend the time to get a well matched system for your room you can recreate magic ( although I stil say it should cost $100,000 )

Alan

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


Quote:
Elk

You are correct, i have a system that uses items in that range and it does sound great, i see areas for improvement but the $1000 ish items perform very well, examples i Have are the Marantz TT15, PS Audio GCPH, Anthem 225, all great items and $1000-$1500 a peice, the most expensive item i own is the Esoteric SACD which retails for around $4k.

The value of high end is definetly eroded, one point that i think we can all agree on and is important to make for newcomers is that a well thought out and compatible $15,000 will easily blow away a badly conceived $500,000 system. Once you get to the the high end the differences are small and compatability, rooom matching etc are far more important than how much a peice costs. RMAF made it very clear to me that price was not that big a factor in sound quality and I heard a lot of rooms that were incredilbly expensive that flat out did not sound good to me.
Of course if you can buy the $500,000 system and be in a position to spend the time to get a well matched system for your room you can recreate magic ( although I stil say it should cost $100,000 )

Alan

I agree with 90% of this post... I have great respect for pieces in the $1K - $2K range (for me, that is where most of the best deals in Hi-Fi are, obviously other persons will disagree)...

And I do agree that spending more does not guarantee better sound... a properly setup and synergistic $6K setup can sound better than a mismatched set of components costing $60K... So careful auditioning is a must in this hobby...

The only place we really differ is that I wouldn't comment on whether the $300K gear should sell for $100K as I honestly have no idea what it cost the manufacturer to make (maybe it has materials to justify the price or maybe should be priced at $20K).... If I'm ever in the market for $300K gear (after I win the Lotto), it damn sure better sound, feel and look like $300K if it expects to get my money!!!

BTW, what speakers are you using with your setup???

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


Quote:
Maybe I should have said like 20 years ago !! must be getting older than i thought !!

As a person who works with electronics every day i must admit the concept of hifi as art is a very difficult one to relate. I could never recreate a Monet or write a symphony but it would be easy to build a LARS amp ( sure that will upset someone ).

A typical example of my issues relate to things like class D amps, they have been invented and are being used everywhere else in the audio world as a budget space/power saving technology, if you look at theory there is nothing about it which indicates its a better way of amplifiing from a sound quality point of view. Yet in the hifi world its been bastardized into an excuse to charge more money for things as it is just new, NAD coming out with a $6,000 amp just because it says class D, it just drives me nuts knowing that companies thet make pro audio amps are using the same technology to reduce cost !!! yet the hifi world accepts it driving up costs !! the electronics and theory behind it do not change from one marketplace to the next so why should hifi be different ? the same marketplace economics apply relative to any technology.

Its not just the statement products that are being affected, the NAD being a good example, they would never of dreamed of selling a $6,000 amp but now because the ecomomic spread of the market has become so acceptably wide they feel as if they can get away with it. In other words they make their product fit that price point, years ago they would have looked at the same sound quality but in a less shiny box and aimed to sell it for $1000 - $1500. The market spread is inflating prices at all levels, the more compressed the pricing the smaller the step changes between quality levels, again if you look at the intrinsic values of the products there is nothing to indicate the current wide market spread is vaild. Its just the spreading of all levels and the increased step changes that has me upset, not jealously that i cant afford the $170,000 wilson speakers. The market is being corrupted at the level I do purchase in, $1000 - $4000 a component the NAD a few years ago would have been in my price point, now it is not and this is a direct result of acceptance by the market of high pricing.

Things were good economically for a long period of time and people could afford these high end goods without issue, this has also contributed to the gouging. Maybe now things are getting hard again it will affect the high end pricing. A little natural wastage and belt tightening would be a good thing.
Alan

Remember that NAD has the C375BEE in the $1000 - $1500 price range..... So there is no reason to assume the the M2 is just an attempt at price gouging... NAD also has the M3 available at $3K... It just happens that NAD has added more and more products to its line... when it started it had only 1 integrated amp at an insanely low price... Now it has 6 Integrated amps ranging from dirt cheap (relatively speaking of course) to Definitely not cheap (for me, anyway)... I don't think there's anything wrong with expanding their product line upwards... Now it would be a whole different case if they just decided to charge $6K for the C375BEE (that would be a clear ripoff)...

BTW, at $1K - $4K we are shopping in the same market for gear...

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

Im currently using Dynaudio Focus 220's, interconnencts are MIT XLR's and speaker cables are Synergistic alpha.

I like the sound, the only thing i yearn for now is a more of it ie a bigger sound, the problem as we all know though is as soon as you start messing with the system to get a bigger sound the whole balance gets thrown out so im very apprehensive about upgrading

Alan

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

Ive owned various NAD products over the years, recently i hve had the C352, C372 then the 162/272 combo. I think NAD tops out at this level, ive auditioned the M3 extensively and i just dont get it, its a very precise detailed sound but absolutle zero musical involvement, I also auditioned the M5 and found the same thing. It just seems to me that NAD is outside its comfort zone and it shows.

One of the things I always look at when buying kit is where does it fit in that companies market position. Ive always lived by teh rule that a cheap Ferrari will be better than an expensive Fiat, this is generally a sound rule. An example being that my eesoteric which is at their entry level is to me far superior to the M5 which for NAD is a stretch. Esoteric makes their own transports etc which just display's a higher level of product engineering to me.

Alan

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

Alan,
I'm a Dyne user, too, Contour S3.4s. The sound in my system got quite a bit bigger when 1) I upgraded from a Pro-Ject Tube Box II phono stage to an EAR 834P and 2) I recently upgraded to a C-J LP70S (for a ridiculously good price; someone made me an offer I couldn't refuse) from my C-J Premier 11A (which is still a great amp, IMHO).

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


Quote:
The perceived value of the very high end may be dropping. These prices do continue to rise very quickly. You may be correct that at this end of the market the incremental improvements (if any) do not justify the cost.

However at the low to mid-end here is more and more value. There are astounding products available in all categories at $1,000 and below for example.

Even the low price high end has some more cracking value products, just consider several of the new integrated amps out there in 2k to 4k bracket as a quick example.

Personally I differ from Alan in that I still see value/performance from high end audio up to 20k region (many reference products in the 10k to 20k range), after this IMO we start to see a steeper drop in incremental price performance value that then require ever more costs.
Also IMO there are still engineering developments and designs that set some products and their technologies ahead, which usually rears its head more in the mid high end and upwards.
Regarding the recent few posts about Class D, I do not think its fair to say all Class D products are the same in terms of development and cost.
This is easily seen if actually searching and reading on the subject by engineers such as Bruno Putzeys amongst others, and the product design and implemention.
While OEM Icepower brought class D to the masses and for many listeners it seems to have audio limitations, it is not the only solution and implementation out there.

In this case you pay for what you get, which will be interesting to compare the ARC to say traditional Icepower, and also how digital amp sounds.
However it is fair to say many of those manufacturers that do not use Icepower are perceived to be better, but the downside is your paying for the development/design and implementation.
Someone is keeping a nice list of PWM amps and is useful to see who is developing their own or using OEM.
But it cannot be assumed that they all suffer from the same limitations of the older OEM Icepower design.
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=594707

Alan, if you can listen to a Lyngdorf TDAI2200 (cd to digital input), it is surprising just how good a digital amp can be and nearly a match for my reference amp while being cheaper even with roomperfect module.
The Nad M2 may also surprise you, or the new ARC DSi200 class D integrated.

Cheers
Orb

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


Quote:
Personally I differ from Alan in that I still see value/performance from high end audio up to 20k region (many reference products in the 10k to 20k range), after this IMO we start to see a steeper drop in incremental price performance value that then require ever more costs.

I don't know where the knee of the quality/price curve is. This also depends on the component type (amp v. speaker for example).

Guessing I would put the knee of rapidly diminishing returns around $7,500.00 for amps, $3,000 for digital source, somewhere between $10,000 - 15,000 for speakers.

For this money one can purchase just shy of state of the art (and unquestionably a spectacular system).

Welshsox
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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

I was intrigued by the Lyngdorf, not with its amp but its room correction.

I have a pretty energetic room and if i use bigger speakers it becomes extremely boomy very quickly. Ive experimented with bass traps etc but never gone the whole hog

I would love to try something like the Lyngdorf or maybe the Anthem ARC products

Alan

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

Edited out -due to speaking/about on active room correction.

I'll just say that it's 'not my favorite'.

Elk
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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

My experience has been the room correction can help a bit after the room has already been well-treated.

It's pretty useless (and can be harmful) if the room as not very good and the system is asked to do a lot of correction.

Plus it is a lot cheaper to add good room treatments than to buy something from TacT or Lyngdorf.

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


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Now the common argument that is thrown out is that why should i care if people want to spend $100,000 on an amp, im just jealous.

I look at it like the housing industry before the crash...there is simply no way $50K in materials, $70K in land and $30K in construction costs equal a $300K home, and this is exasperated when the person buying the inflated home makes $50K a year...When the dream fails, they blame the banks or mortgage industry or the fellow who was trying for the free lunch. The inflated price is seldom discussed.

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i

Lexicon: "We worked with both Oppo and with their sub-assembly supplier as partners. We requested and obtained numerous changes from what was then the standard Oppo unit"

Oppo confirmed: "Oppo worked directly with THX to improve video performance during the testing of the Lexicon player and the benefits trickled down to the Oppo platform as well. We also worked directly with Lexicon engineers for various issues they discovered during their internal tests."

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


Quote:
Lexicon: "We worked with both Oppo and with their sub-assembly supplier as partners. We requested and obtained numerous changes from what was then the standard Oppo unit"

Oppo confirmed: "Oppo worked directly with THX to improve video performance during the testing of the Lexicon player and the benefits trickled down to the Oppo platform as well. We also worked directly with Lexicon engineers for various issues they discovered during their internal tests."


Oh....never mind.

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


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Oh....never mind.

No icon could convey the face I was pulling at those statements!

We used to be so very different, you and I.

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Re: Lexicons stuffs a $500 Oppo BD-83 into a chassis and sells i


Quote:

Quote:

Oh....never mind.

No icon could convey the face I was pulling at those statements!

We used to be so very different, you and I.

It was a feeble attempt at channeling the spirit of Roseanne Roseannadanna.

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