Gray Forecast or Silver Lining? Page 2

Meanwhile, Schiit has shifted forward plans to expand its operations to a facility in Utah, a state not under lockdown and, Jason says, one that is less likely to be. "Yeah, don't be surprised if the words on our site change very quickly to, like, 'designed and manufactured in California and/or Utah,'" he chuckles.

"Of course, like everyone, I'm sure we've taken a bit of a hit, but the orders are coming in. People are still asking questions. People still need to have service performed. What we're trying to do is do that without jeopardizing anyone here."

Looking forward, Stoddard expects a mix of production in both states, with the majority staying in California unless the business climate gets even worse. "This is a much weirder [downturn] than anything that's ever happened before. Usually it's going to be OK, . . . but I don't want to get too crazy, like 'everything is going to be roses and unicorns.'"

VPI Industries is located in New Jersey—another locked-down state—but it too was considered an essential business based on the "manufacturing or assembly" criteria, says CEO Mat Weisfeld, who adds that they've all been nervous about the COVID-19 situation.

"My staff is freaking out. We have older staff members in general," he says. "And so the first thing we did was send home anybody who was at risk. Then I had one staff member who wanted to stay, regardless. I had a lot of talks with him and everything: 'Dude, go home.' And he says, 'Well, you know what? If I die, I die.' He's got other things he's worried about."

Weisfeld first saw dips in his business last summer, in the wake of the protests in Hong Kong. Then, when the coronavirus first became widespread, all of Asia froze their orders. The European market followed suit, putting orders on hold—but not cancelling them, "which is optimistic in the sense that they're going to get through [the situation]," he says. Once he realized the US would be next, he decided to push ahead with the earlier launch of a customer/dealer portal/e-commerce site that had been planned for third-quarter completion. E-commerce sites can mean bad news for dealerships, but, Weisfeld explains, their site enables customers to identify their nearest dealer, and those dealers still get a share.

"Let's help our dealership by keeping, realistically, their cash flow, by serving as their surrogate, where, if the customer couldn't go to the dealership, they can order through us [via the site] and identify the dealer. So, that way, we're basically drop-shipping," he says. "We're doing whatever we can to help support our dealers, especially those without online presence, and make it so the customers can order. So that was the first thing. But then the whole world got shut down."

Bowers & Wilkins, which is headquartered in Worthing, England, and has US offices outside Boston, is trying a similar experiment. Speaking via Zoom, Director of Communications Andy Kerr discussed changes the company needed to make to adapt to an evolving marketplace.

"The biggest change is about the sales process," he says. "Up until the outbreak and its full implications, . . . we always had insisted that you could only buy certain products in a retail store—the most obvious example being the biggest, most premium loudspeakers." That way, customers could experience them firsthand in a proper demo setup, and dealers can provide service, support, aftercare, and so on. It's the established, old-world way, Kerr says.

Suddenly, that world has changed, and Bowers & Wilkins has responded.

"We've instituted a scheme that puts, or very shortly will put, everything available for retail online," he says. B&W has to work out how to sell this way while still offering a premium experience, so it still makes sense for their dealers, too. Kerr compared the situation to ordering a high-end meal online: You could order all the ingredients for the perfect meal, but you wouldn't order a premium, Michelin-starred meal from a Deliveroo or Grubhub.

"It's the sense of trying to match the customer, wherever that customer might be, to a dealer in the local area even if that's not the initial point of contact. . . . We'd still want to have some degree of dialogue with you. So, for example, if you buy an 800-series loudspeaker through our website, we aren't simply going to ship it to you and leave it on your driveway and go away. . . . We certainly want to have a person you can speak to, ask questions of, and get guidance from, even if you can't shake that person's hand afterwards."

Perhaps the most unexpected COVID-19–related pivot was by VPI. A customer commented online that he couldn't get hand sanitizer and joked about using VPI's record-cleaning fluid instead. "I looked into it and, realistically, the ingredients are different, but the process to mix it, make it, measure it out, and then put it into bottles—it's the same thing," VPI's Mat Weisfeld told Stereophile. "So then we started buying the supplies and doing it." He posted on Facebook that VPI was making hand sanitizer in one-ounce bottles and giving it away. To his surprise, he started getting orders from medical professionals, including two of the three nearby hospitals and a cancer facility, and also the local police department. They all wanted quantities.

"I told these guys, 'we're not really a sanitizer company. We make turntables. I mean, we're doing a DIY job in a professional way.' They're like, 'We don't care. We need it. Can we get 30 bottles? Can we get 50 bottles?' Last night, I delivered the first batch to the cancer-patient facility." Now VPI Industries is making face shields, too. It helps to have a generic name: Nothing about "VPI Industries" limits the company to turntables.

As far as VPI's core business goes, Mat is seeing two trends: Small accessories are selling well, and a few customers are pulling the trigger on higher-end turntables. One older customer just bought an HW-40 Anniversary 'table, Mat says; the fellow told him, "If I get this [COVID-19], I'm f*cking dead, and I want the best turntable in the world before I die." He's spending more time at home and decided to splurge because, hey, life is short.

Gray Forecast Or Silver Lining?
If the idea of a silver lining to all this seems absurd to you—well, I get it. People are dying. The economic picture looks bleak. This snapshot of the current state of the industry is surely—unavoidably—overoptimistic, because in general those hardest-hit, and companies with lots of layoffs, don't want to see that in the news. And some businesses are on the brink. They could still go either way depending how things play out. An extra month or two of slow business or downtime will break them.

And yet, in general, people in this industry—even people with businesses on the line—are keeping their chins up. "I'm just hoping that this ends as quickly and safely as it can, that things get back to something approaching normal," Schiit's Jason Stoddard told me. "I think in general, it actually might be good for the audiophile realm, because, I mean, if people are stuck at home, they're going to be thinking about more at-home entertainment."

MSB Technology is spending its time looking to improve its operations, planning for the future. CEO Jonathan Gullman insists that the company's manufacturing and sales departments are healthy for the long term: "We want to do right by our team, as there is no company without them. We will be excited to have everyone back when this has run its course. We just purchased a new factory and are enormously excited for this. This is a huge focus for us. While the market freeze has created its fair share of challenges, we're using this time to plan and set up our new shop and production systems. When allowed, our first move will be to relocate to the new facilities."

Vinnie Rossi—the company, which is based in Holden, Massachusetts, another locked-down state—already moved its production, to a local manufacturing facility. Vinnie Rossi—the man, designer and founder of his eponymous company—notes that, while there are some supply-chain issues, likely resulting from parts hoarding by companies worldwide, most of his suppliers are still up and running. "I am optimistic that once COVID-19 is under control globally, our industry will spring back into life. Even though there is uncertainty with the current situation, I do believe that now is the time for planning and being as flexible as possible to change."

It's true: With so much of the population at home, isn't this an opportunity for people to start thinking more about improving their stereos?

"Everyone is time poor," B&W's Andy Kerr says. "If it's one thing this [situation] has put back into people's lives, it's getting the gift of time back." To that end, he wonders if perhaps sheltering at home will remind people why they paid money for their hi-fi systems in the first place.

AudioQuest's Mejias says this: "We've often said that a good hi-fi is not a luxury but a necessity. In times such as these, the truth behind that philosophy is only more apparent. Will there be a long-term return to listening to music as a dedicated activity? We can only hope!"

No one knows how long this crisis will last, or how severe the long-term economic damage will be. But there's no harm—and much potential benefit—in having hope. "There's something I always say to people," Andy Kerr said. "You live your life by a soundtrack." So go wash your hands and put on some music.


Jason Victor Serinus's picture

Thank you,

tonykaz's picture

Are we simply trying to be optimistic ?

We are sailing into a Hurricane.

Washington is obsessed with the Dow Jones Industrial Averages while people are draining the food Banks. Our President is Golfing in Virginia.

People are loosing their Jobs and their Heath Insurance with Covid treatment costing $35k.

If Schiit is the bright spot, shit is hitting the dam fan right now.

Great piece of Doom & Gloom

Tony in Venice

Bogolu Haranath's picture

NY state just reported a downturn in the number of cases ........ So, there is hope :-) .......

John Atkinson's picture
Bogolu Haranath wrote:
NY state just reported a downturn in the number of cases ........ So, there is hope :-)

The best source I know of for statistics on the pandemic, global and local, can be found at, with the data gleaned by a teenager!

John Atkinson
Technical Editor, Stereophile

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Hope that teenager is not playing 'Candy Crush' and 'Super Mario Brothers' in between but instead, concentrating on the Covid-19 statistics :-) ........

Bogolu Haranath's picture

According to Google, more women than men, including teenage girls, play video games on their smartphones, these days ...... Majority of those teenagers, pursue STEM careers and get those STEM jobs ...... Now we know, JA1 used to play video games on his smartphone when he was a teenager :-) ........

Bogolu Haranath's picture

It is also a good idea to check with the individual state HHS statistics numbers ......... Those state numbers could also provide individual county numbers :-) ........

Bogolu Haranath's picture

HHS said that the feds will pay for Covid-19 hospital care, even if the patient's health insurance won't cover it :-) ......

tonykaz's picture

This is typical of all that Chinesium stuff in the Audio World. NO dam Service available & who's gonna pay???

White House to the rescue !!

Can we get JA1 to pay when those S.Gross Loudspeakers fall apart?

Tony in Venice

ps. the number details about the Virus are fascinating, thanks Mr.JA1, all arrows are pointing up.

Bogolu Haranath's picture

A statistician is a person who draws a mathematically precise line from an unwarranted assumption to a foregone conclusion :-) .......

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Statistics say one out of every four people is insane ....... Think about three of your best friends ....... If they are ok, then it is you :-) ........

Briandrumzilla's picture

Thanks for the CNN updates.

JulieAudiophile's picture

Thanks, Jason! Glad I'm signed on to comment now.

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Welcome to the great world of Stereophile comments section :-) ........

rt66indierock's picture

The key thing is an over reliance on manufacturing and parts coming from China in high-end audio.

JRT's picture

I was gladdened by the news that VPI are doing what they can to make a positive difference in the unfolding events surrounding the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Relative to large producers of hand sanitizer, VPI production is surely tiny, but the importance is large if it prevents just one infection that might otherwise take a life.

Kudos to VPI.

rschryer's picture

"With so much of the population at home, isn't this an opportunity for people to start thinking more about improving their stereos?

""Everyone is time poor," B&W's Andy Kerr says. "If it's one thing this [situation] has put back into people's lives, it's getting the gift of time back." To that end, he wonders if perhaps sheltering at home will remind people why they paid money for their hi-fi systems in the first place.

AudioQuest's Mejias says this: "We've often said that a good hi-fi is not a luxury but a necessity. In times such as these, the truth behind that philosophy is only more apparent. Will there be a long-term return to listening to music as a dedicated activity? We can only hope!"

mmole's picture

...there is so much to admire here. VPI and Audioquest are fine companies and Stephen Mejias was an insightful writer when he was on staff at Stereophile. But I'm a little put off by Stephen's quote. My wife is a nurse in New York City. You know what's "a necessity in times like these?": face masks, gloves, ventilators, and ICU beds. "A good hifi" is simply not. Although a good system is nice to come home to, my wife can't even come home for fear of infecting our family.

Priaptor's picture

I am not sure what you are put off by? If you were a healthcare provider or a worker cleaning or technician unknowingly exposing themselves, you would get it. To be honest, in these times, I am kind of put off that you are put off.

mmole's picture

All I was saying was that in a time where it's hard for healthcare workers to get the necessary protection to keep them safe; where it's hard for hospitals to get the necessary equipment to save lives; where it's hard for consumers to get such basic necessary items as water or toilet paper; it's a bit tone deaf to describe a "good hifi" as a "necessity."

Perhaps my living in the hardest hit part of the country with a spouse who is dealing with the epidemic on the front lines makes me a little more appreciative of what is truly a 'necessity..

Priaptor's picture


mmole's picture

I appreciate your response. Stay well.

Jim Austin's picture

But I don't share your perspective. There are different imperatives for different circumstances. Right now, for healthcare workers and those afflicted, PPE's and ventilators are unquestionably more vital. But even here in New York City--ground zero--life goes on for most of us. We can be (and are) sympathetic toward those fighting the fight against this disease, but for most of us--and the vast majority are not infected, not so far--life goes on. And life will continue to go on when this crisis is over. There are things we can learn from a crisis like this, about what we value and what it means to be human. About what gives us solace in difficult times.

On the day before New Yorkers were locked down, I assisted my wife in collecting PPE's from university science labs; we delivered a truckload to Columbia Presbyterian. They were thrilled to have them. The next day, we were instructed to stay home. So we did.

I understand very well the vital need for PPEs, ventilators, treatments, cures, vaccines. Saving life is the great imperative when life is in jeopardy. But in other times--and also, for some, in those very same times--knowing how to live well and meaningfully can also be vital. It isn't a contest.

Jim Austin, Editor

HJC001's picture

hello, Mr. Mmole. My heart is with you and your family. Thank you for your work and sacrifice. Please understand that for "Some" people, the OCD of audiophilia is LIKE medicine for the mind. a neato hi-fi is part of the mental health that keeps us at home instead of going out to look for something to do. writing artists should be allowed a bit of poetic license in these very stressfull times. indeed, broad generalizations that a hi-fi is a necessity are absolutely wrong. However, an indication that a neato hi-fi may help many, many, many people with the mental health to keep them OUT of hospitals is ok. In moderation, in Sharing the burden and Not turning on each other. Etc. Etc. Etc. I send you and Everyone much Love. Be Well and Healthy.

Stephen Mejias's picture

VPI and Audioquest are fine companies and Stephen Mejias was an insightful writer when he was on staff at Stereophile. But I'm a little put off by Stephen's quote.

Hello mmole.
Thank you for reading and thank you for sharing. I'm sorry I came off as being unsympathetic or callous. I can't imagine how difficult this situation must be for you and your family.

In my mind, you and your wife are heroes. Plain and simple. I'm so sorry that you're going through this experience.

I live just across the river in Jersey City, and I have dear friends who work in hospitals. This situation is terrifying. Sadly, we may have reached a point here in the US where we all know someone who has tested positive for the virus.

So, just to clarify because I don't want to seem like a complete ass, my words were in direct response to questions regarding silver linings to the present horrible reality. Julie asked: "Could there be any silver lining to this? Maybe people staying at home will start thinking more about home entertainment and perhaps some better stereo gear?"

I absolutely agree that face masks, gloves, ventilators, and hospital beds are far more important than hi-fi or music -- now and always. I also know that there are some very fortunate people for whom this situation has granted time and freedom, the ability to finally stay at home, either alone or with loved ones, to be bored(!), to pursue new or old interests. I want them to be happy. I know for a fact that some of them are turning to music and hi-fi, which is great.

My relationship with the current reality is somewhere in the vast between. I feel extremely fortunate to have my wife and daughter, our family and friends, my job, and a full refrigerator. When I begin to wish for more space, more sleep, or some time alone, I remind myself that I would never otherwise have this opportunity to watch our daughter grow. That's my personal silver lining.

I'm wishing the best for you, your family, and all of Stereophile's readers. I'm wishing the best for all of us.

tonykaz's picture

Hmm, wishful thinking.

All that momentum building, poof, in only a short few weeks.

Foundational Industries are being crushed.

Lives and Careers are stalling and uncontrollably nose-diving like those 737 Max events.

Americans just completed the 10 year recovery process that began with the 2008 financial crisis.

Now this....

Overall, we as a Nation are better equipped to handle the Financials that any of the other Industrial Nations but we are gonna feel pain.

Discretionary purchases are the lowest Priority so daddy's purchase of that $14,000 Mono phono cartridge will have to be....

Of course, those top 10% folks won't be feeling anyone's pain, Private Jets and Helicopter Taxis will still Fly.


We citizen deplorables still don't have Masks, Tests, Vaccine.

Thank you, the Mail is still running.

Fingers Crossed

Bon Vivant

Tony in Venice

HJC001's picture

My friend, 2000 years ago we could barely support about 500million people on earth. Now, billions!!! We'll ge through this. I have met many beautifully intelligent young people, so I am confident that this currently underappreciated generation will pull through.
Hope. Hope. Hope. Be Well!

rt66indierock's picture

The first Coronavirus patient in Pasco County was Gene DellaSala of Audioholics he got it from an industry representative. Audiophiles spreading Coronavirus, that will cause some interesting discussions.

From the Tampa Bay Times March 11th and updated March 12th.

tonykaz's picture

I am in Lock-down.

I'm building a cabinet, using a bike trip to pick up some Kreg Screws only.

Reading the NYTimes about the pathology of this virus has me spooked into hiding.

This thing is a killer for a small percentage of us, which ones ?

I'm trying to come up with 15 months of useful activities till that vaccine arrives.

I can't see how any Business will survive two or three more months of shut-down.

I dreamed about a Dick Proenneke Alaska Wilderness Isolation, now I seem to have as much of it as I want.

My grandmother in Manitowoc Wisconcin died from the Spanish Influenzas in the 1918s. Now it's our turn to experience those horrors.

I imagine the World to be a different place after we come out from harms way. So, 2022 will bring some exciting opportunities.

Bon Vivant

Tony in Venice

rt66indierock's picture

I don’t blame you for being scared. The Medicare crowd, people with heart issues as simple plaque in their blood vessels, people with chronic lung issues and people with Diabetes should take extra precautions according John Hopkins University. They are my go-to source for medical information.

I don’t think America will be that much different. I have been talking with clients across the country and they have one thing common. They want to get back to lives as they were around the new year.

Please stay safe I have a lot of hard questions for you.

Bogolu Haranath's picture

'Get your kicks on Route 66' :-) ........

rt66indierock's picture

I've studied it my entire adult life off and on. I've hiked, biked and driven all that I can except for Missouri.

The other highway I've seriously studied is the John Marshall Highway.

Carry on

Bogolu Haranath's picture

You missed the Gateway Arch, St. Louis ribs and Budweiser Clydesdale horses :-) ......

rt66indierock's picture

It was a planned trip this summer, We'll do it then in a few years do the whole thing.

Seen the Arch, love St Louis ribs, Kansas City BBQ and the Clydesdales travel so I've seen them as well.

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Even if you have been there before, next time you visit Missouri, visit Branson again :-) ......

tonykaz's picture

Sure, rt66 is important. I didn't realize you are including the original Route 66. I would've liked to have had an Adventure discovering the History but I never had anyone changing their life by "Going West' in that Era of mid 1920s till mid 1980s. except traveling West by 707s, and 1960s Station Wagon Vacations. I've never seen the Grand Canyon. I have traveled Route 66 via YouTube and nearly joined a group flying Powered Paraglider making a Cross Country trip of a lifetime. ( my Bonding Company forbade that exciting adventure, maybe now that my Bernie responsibilities seem bleak ! )

America is changing, as is the World.

No.1 ) Tesla is now in No.2 Position in the Transportation Industry, in just a few years, phew. We will all have our Gas Stations on our Roof Tops. NOBODY saw Tesla coming.

No.2) The Internet provides us with an "Everyman's" Publishing House. We can now have access to vast ranges of detailed information. Education has been democratized, home schooling is for everyone. I would trade my early education for the Internet. Of course, the Internet doesn't Mentor.

Tony in Venice

ps. I live by the Tamiami Trail built in the same Era as Rt66. It's still in everyday use connecting Tampa and Miami. It even has Bike Paths and wonderful SeaFood.

rt66indierock's picture


You don't live in the West where you would meet people who had their lives changed by heading west in the 20's and 30's.

A powered paraglider sounds like fun until I remember watching Piper J-3 Cubs flying backwards into headwinds when I was a kid.

A Tesla is unusable many places I go. And it will be interesting to see the accounting trickery they are up to.

Bernie's chances were always bleak and the Democratic Party establishment is looking the wrong way.

All the internet did for information is create more bad information and create a lazy press that is reduced to lift clan and replace. It has however increased the advantage people like me had in past researching. My advantage over say a typical PhD is now probably unbridgeable.

Finally you have to be near an Ocean for good seafood.

Take care,


tonykaz's picture

The Internet is Research's greatest Tool. ( in my estimation, of course )

I would stay at the Washington-Jefferson Hotel in NY,NY where I could/would access NY's Main Library for important Research details of a Project I'd be working on. ( and a little time on the Town ) I could never live away from a useful Library. In fact, a dam good Library was the deciding factor in my residence location. I couldn't live on St.Croix because they don't have a library. Phew!!!

Now, I can function & work from home, I can research from home, I can discover obscure/important & critical details from home. All within the last 25 years, all on the Internet thru my large screen iMacs running standard Safari & Chrome & Firefox.

This Internet will be the defining element in our youth's future success. We can now do without the Pains of sitting in a St.Bridigid Grade School Classroom getting drilled with Catechisms day after day, having our displayed curiosities shunted & stunded .

Is there an abundance of defective information out there lurking, sure, just like there was in that 3rd Grade Classroom with Sister Marie Angelica insisting that God Died for our Sins.

Defective information will continue to live in our technological world. Advertisers control our Media, Brand Ambassadors disguise themselves as Reviewers ( sometimes ) or so it seems.

A nice Adventure: Marty Zoffinger on YouTube.

Marty is a Kayak Renter in the Tampa Bay Area, he's sponsored by Pelican Kayak in Canada. Marty is virus shut-down and doing a Daily YouTube Diary called : "The Life of Marty"

The Life of Marty, yesterday, episode 021 is a December bicycle tour of the Florida Keys. This is pretty much the kind of Adventures I'm up to these days.

Tony in Venice

tonykaz's picture

I did own a Bicycle Company in the San Fransisco Bay Area and I'd thought that the Monterey Bay was the place I'd retire. Monterey Bay is the center of Bicycle Greatness, here in the States.

That is until:

I discovered Venice, by mistake, visiting my dying brother in spring of 2016. I've lived here in Venice for a year now and haven't had one single bad day, NOT ONE!

Venice is Paradise! No Bugs, no Sweltering heat ( never over 92F ), two days worth of rain falls in one half hour-then it's dry in another half hour. The Shore Birds are elegant.


I bicycle everywhere I need to go. I get 10 miles to the cheeseburger. I'm nearly 100% Solar Powered. I have NO CAR and don't intend in ever owning one for the rest of my crazy life.

But, i make up for all my goodnesses by flying to the next Bernie gig. ( any more is/are doubtful )

So, I did spend plenty of time in Ca. , my Son lives in Sacramento and I LOVE California, I can easily understand people driving out from horrible Indiana to live life LARGE in LA.

LA is the greatest Civilization EVAH. ( ask anyone )

Tony in Venice

Bogolu Haranath's picture

LA LA Land or, Lah Lah Land :-) ........

Grant Fidelity's picture

We as an industry have to come together to battle the downfall of high end audio, which has started before the covid-19.. make it affordable and accessible to average people, even those hit hard by covid-19 but still love music.. not just the top 10% or top 1%.

We have just finished developing an online tool ( to connect audiophiles, brands and dealers alike.. As part of contribution to the industry to sustain this difficult time, we decide to open it for FREE TO ALL to use indefinitely till the Covid-19 is behind us..

If we all put our heads together, we may have a solution to come out of this crisis stronger than before..

Happy Listening.

audiolab1962's picture

Great a headline picture of how NOT to wear a mask. A complete and utter failure, cannot even follow a few simple pictorial instructions on the side of a box. As fitted offers practically zero protection. Darwinism ?

Priaptor's picture

There are some who may wonder why the industry is feeling it as much as they are "as people staying home will likely want to listen more". Reality is many people staying home are wondering how they are going to pay next weeks bills when they have no income coming in, not looking to buy new equipment, except maybe for a select few.

No industry is exempt from the claws of Covid. As a healthcare worker, I have heard people say, "well your industry is protected". NO, actually the reverse. Almost 70-80% of cash flow in healthcare comes from elective procedures which are on lock-down. Doctors, nurses and just about all healthcare workers are taking huge salary cuts. Quite frankly, after a grueling days work I rather listen to my iPhone chilling in bed than my fancy stereo.

On the bright side, this will pass. Not sure how many of those reading are in the USA, but things, with the exception of a few hot-spots are improving on multiple fronts no matter how the news portrays it. New point of service testing (from Abbott) will greatly help. New mass testing with Roche's COBA 6800 and 8800 as well as a variety of other companies will make a huge difference in determining the epidemiological spread, the true nature/number of "asymptomatic" individuals in our geographically disparate country/states/counties, a huge issue relative to just about every other location around the world. Many things are happening that should be encouraging to all and not just in the testing arena. We are in a way fortunate to be the biggest technological revolution ever and I am not talking computers, but Biotech and Pharma. I have never seen the kinds of things coming as fast as furious as they are now. This not just for Covid, but all of healthcare.

I feel for all those impacted from a health and welfare standpoint and hope we all come out of this for the better. People are obviously suffering and my best wishes to all and hope we all come out better when this passes, which it will.

Poor Audiophile's picture

I think of my self as a pessimist,(I like to say from experience) but several here have me beat! I like this article! It reminds me of the old saying. If life hands you lemons, make lemonade! Larry

HJC001's picture

"always look on the bright side of life, tadum, tadum tadum tadum, tadum tadum."

Bogolu Haranath's picture

'Here comes the Sun ...... It's alright' :-) ........

Bogolu Haranath's picture

'Stay Home' ........ Big & Rich :-) .........

invaderzim's picture

As someone who works for a company that scoffed at the danger of the virus and hasn't implemented any cleaning or social distancing policies I'm impressed by Schiit's response to the virus. Even if I worked for a company that cared at all I'd still be impressed by Schiit's response to it.

monetschemist's picture

... seems to me to be to do our best to avoid getting this darned thing, avoiding putting stress on our respective medical systems, avoid infecting our friends and neighbours, etc etc.

Those of us that can go further, like VPI, ¡wow! well done, thank you!

invaderzim's picture

The foolish companies like the one I work for by not spending a few dollars to protect employees and customers will drag this on longer and lose large amounts of money.
Our business is less than 20% what it was and yet they are so short sighted they can't figure out that if they take precautions things could get back to normal faster.

Bogolu Haranath's picture

Is 'Bugs Bunny' the CEO of your company? :-) ........

invaderzim's picture

They are just locked into the "money not spent is money made" line of thinking and can't break free of it for any reason.

Bogolu Haranath's picture

So, that person is like Mr. Burns :-) .......

davds1582's picture

that the manufacturers you canvassed are doing reasonably well.

But what about our friendly local hi-fi retailers -- you know, the goniffs who hard-sell your readers, along with everybody else, and then charge a 50% mark-up for the privilege?

I for one, wish them the best of luck -- fingers crossed -- in these hard times.

mrounds's picture

The article did note a couple of companies setting up full-scale online sales that ask for your local retailer then send a commission (didn't say how much) their way. Frankly, more onliners should do that; take it out of the "support" budget if you want to, since the stores are probably the first line.

This isn't the only bunch asking for your local connection, though others do it for other reasons. Log in to PBS, for instance, and they want you to confirm (they're guessing based on your IP address) what your local station is. In their case, it's so they can show you only what has run on the local station, but the concept can easily be expanded to commissions where local retailers are official distributors.

anomaly7's picture

Great article and informative as to how the industry is changing to stay afloat- we hope.