RIP Bobby Palkovic of Merlin Music Systems

Photo: Stephen Mejias

We were saddened to hear of the death of loudspeaker designer Bobby Palkovic, apparently by his own hand. We had published positive reviews of Bobby's Merlin speakers, including one of his VSM Millennium design and the VSM-MX at Following is the news posted to Facebook by Bobby's friend, Rich Brkich of audio retailer Signature Sound:

"I am greatly saddened to report the loss of my long time friend Bobby Palkovich, President of Merlin Music Systems. Apparently more distraught than I had ever thought about business, other personal issues and the toll they must have been taking on his state of mind, it saddens me greatly to report Bobby took his own life last Thursday, August 20th.

"I will always remember him as the bright and quick witted and sometimes just plain crabby (generally amusingly so) lovable character that he was. Doing the many trade shows, road trips, and other events we did together over the years were always interesting and fun experiences. They are my fondest memories of him. His memory will live on not only in all those who knew him, but also in the hundreds/thousands of pairs of Merlin speakers in peoples homes that he crafted with a dedication and passion) that was probably unrivaled in the high end audiophile community. No shrinking violet, he would defend his friends and speakers to the hilt if he felt they where unfairly slighted. Making them and seeing or hearing from people how much they enjoyed them was, I'm sure, one of his greatest joys.

"Rest in peace my dear friend..."—Rich Brkich
Owner, Signature Sound

ken mac's picture

Bobby made beautiful sounding speakers. I've listened to a friend's pair for years. How very sad.

Glotz's picture

Let it be a lesson to us all to reach out, and care even more about those in our lives.

orgillian's picture

Several years ago, Dave Matthews said, upon the passing of Leroi Moore, "It's easier to leave than to be left." Hopefully now Bobby can find some peace.

BlueBull's picture

Paid for.Freight also paid.Promised to be sent beginning of August.I am concerned about my money,because I know the speakers will never be...

Venere 2's picture

Deal directly with the company for this matter. To complain about this in a story about a man's tragic death is absolutely unacceptable.

Bluejimbop's picture

one of Music Matters' Blue Note vinyl reissues, you can pick up a copy of "Emily Post's Etiquette" 18th Edition. Recommended.

michael green's picture

We at MGA/RoomTune are saddened by this news. Many good memories of our friend. Our thoughts are with his family and friends.

Harold & Michael

bpstars's picture

I never dealt with anyone so enthusiastic about his product. His speakers were his babies and he made them mine. I remember calling because a freak accident had severely damaged a VSM I had, which I thought gone. I sent it back and for very little, it came back like new, bobby saying that I'd have to look past the defects (never did find one). He sent me a new tweeter and his special solder and talked me thru replacing it myself so I didn't have to ship. No one did these things, but bobby. A unique and wonderful man. RIP