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post #1 of 28 Old 09-08-2011, 11:47 AM - Thread Starter
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I was curious if anyone knows what happened to founder Tom Vodhanel from SVS? Is he still with them? Could not find much information on their site.

He was a great contributor to the forums in those early days even before he started SVS.

Bob
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post #2 of 28 Old 09-08-2011, 02:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bob_m10 View Post

I was curious if anyone knows what happened to founder Tom Vodhanel from SVS? Is he still with them? Could not find much information on their site.

He was a great contributor to the forums in those early days even before he started SVS.

Bob

Tom V left SVS about 4 years ago. I can't tell you what he has been doing since then, but it doesn't seem to be in the audio business. There is a member using the name Tom Vodhanel here on the Forum who has 4 posts. I can't verify if that is the same Tom Vodhanel that started SVS.
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post #3 of 28 Old 09-09-2011, 05:29 PM
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I think Stephan is still there, a head engineer. Super nice and intelligent guy - wouldn't be surprised if he moved up to SVP, or higher.

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post #4 of 28 Old 09-09-2011, 08:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Buckeyefan View Post

I think Stephan is still there, a head engineer. Super nice and intelligent guy - wouldn't be surprised if he moved up to SVP, or higher.

Ponte's now at Tymphany. Not sure of the relevance to the OP's question, though. No offense meant, but Ponte was simply a talented employee. Tom, as a founder of the company, is the "V" in SVS with Ron Stimpson being the "S". There are/were an unknown number of founding partners in addition to Ron & Tom.

At one time, there was a post or two by Ron at either HTF or S&V's forum that hinted at numerous personnel changes (turmoil?) going on within SVS, but the posts/thread disappeared (or, at least, I can't find it). My take is Tom probably didn't initiate the separation.

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post #5 of 28 Old 09-11-2011, 05:38 PM
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Hi all,

I decided to leave svs 3.5 years ago. I'm not going to get into all the reasons...they have enough problems(and I still have a friend or two working there for now)

I had to sign a 3 year non compete to leave. That is up, game on.

Tom V.
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post #6 of 28 Old 09-11-2011, 06:21 PM - Thread Starter
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Tom,
Welcome back and good luck in your new venture. I am sure you will be successful. Bob
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post #7 of 28 Old 10-26-2011, 01:55 AM
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Alright good to see you back in the game Tom. I know I can't wait to see what you can offer up.

ShaunH
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post #8 of 28 Old 10-26-2011, 07:01 PM
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Any link to your new company Tom?
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post #9 of 28 Old 10-26-2011, 07:32 PM
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Why do you have to sign a non-compete if you want to leave a company (really, i'm clueless)? That sucks!
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post #10 of 28 Old 10-26-2011, 07:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Test123455 View Post

Why do you have to sign a non-compete if you want to leave a company (really, i'm clueless)? That sucks!

Non-compete agreements that one signs to work FOR a company do often suck because it deprives people of their livelihood if they leave. Non-compete agreements that one makes to sell out ownership in a company, well you are typically getting paid generously for that clause

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post #11 of 28 Old 10-27-2011, 08:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Test123455 View Post

Why do you have to sign a non-compete if you want to leave a company (really, i'm clueless)? That sucks!

Despite the fact that competition is supposed to be good for the consumer, most businesses would be happy with a monopoly. If you are a real talent in a company and are leaving, the parent company has one less competitor to deal with for (in this case) 3 years. So the parent company will include the non compete in the terms of the parting of ways.

I believe that Tom V's last design for SVS was the TV-12 which was used in the Ultra-12 series from 4-5 years ago. IIRC, that driver sold for $579 as a spare part. But then SVS brought in some talent from TC Sound. His name is Stephen Ponte. I believe he designed the driver in the PB-13 Ultra among several other designs. SVS also brought in someone who had been working for Toyota who had other business talents.

In any case, competition is a great idea in theory but in practice may not look so rosy to a business owner.
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post #12 of 28 Old 10-27-2011, 10:32 AM
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Since November 2010 Stephen Ponte has been working for Tymphany, a manufacturer of loudspeakers in China with 1400 employees.
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post #13 of 28 Old 10-27-2011, 11:03 AM
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Originally Posted by mbfleming View Post

Since November 2010 Stephen Ponte has been working for Tymphany, a manufacturer of loudspeakers in China with 1400 employees.

Yes. That would still suggest that he had a hand in the design of the SB-16 Ultra driver. Don't know if the SB-16 Ultra is even still in development, especially with the change in ownership of SVS.
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post #14 of 28 Old 10-27-2011, 11:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spyboy View Post

Despite the fact that competition is supposed to be good for the consumer, most businesses would be happy with a monopoly. If you are a real talent in a company and are leaving, the parent company has one less competitor to deal with for (in this case) 3 years. So the parent company will include the non compete in the terms of the parting of ways.

It should be noted that non-competes are non-enforceable in many jurisdictions, including California.

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post #15 of 28 Old 10-27-2011, 02:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spyboy View Post

Yes. That would still suggest that he had a hand in the design of the SB-16 Ultra driver. Don't know if the SB-16 Ultra is even still in development, especially with the change in ownership of SVS.

Ed Mullen says there are no plans for the SB16 at the moment, thanks to crazy neodymium prices, here is the link. Doesn't look like its going to happen until rare earth magnets prices settle down, and with the way things are going, that could be years from now.
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post #16 of 28 Old 10-27-2011, 03:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Test123455 View Post

Why do you have to sign a non-compete if you want to leave a company (really, i'm clueless)? That sucks!

For an employee, a non-compete is usually signed at the time of hire, usually as a condition of the job offer itself. Similarly, they can be linked to promotions or bonuses. For a typical employee, it's more about preventing a competitor from hiring said employee to get access to (potentially) trade secrets.

In Tom's case, he was a founder of the company, not your average employee. It's more likely the non-compete was part of a negotiated settlement to buy his share of the company.

-Brent
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post #17 of 28 Old 10-27-2011, 03:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Vodhanel View Post

Hi all,

I decided to leave svs 3.5 years ago. I'm not going to get into all the reasons...they have enough problems(and I still have a friend or two working there for now)

I had to sign a 3 year non compete to leave. That is up, game on.

Tom V.
Power Sound Audio

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post #18 of 28 Old 10-29-2011, 09:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spyboy View Post

Despite the fact that competition is supposed to be good for the consumer, most businesses would be happy with a monopoly. If you are a real talent in a company and are leaving, the parent company has one less competitor to deal with for (in this case) 3 years. So the parent company will include the non compete in the terms of the parting of ways.

I believe that Tom V's last design for SVS was the TV-12 which was used in the Ultra-12 series from 4-5 years ago. IIRC, that driver sold for $579 as a spare part. But then SVS brought in some talent from TC Sound. His name is Stephen Ponte. I believe he designed the driver in the PB-13 Ultra among several other designs. SVS also brought in someone who had been working for Toyota who had other business talents.

In any case, competition is a great idea in theory but in practice may not look so rosy to a business owner.

Actually Tom was still there when the Ultra 13 was launched with the original Bash Amp.


Quote:
Originally Posted by rick240 View Post

It should be noted that non-competes are non-enforceable in many jurisdictions, including California.

True but keep in mind Tom might have lost any benefits he gained by leaving and really it was likely smarter to just take the non-compete and move on. And again this was the company Tom helped founded.

Damn I want to speculate so bad on possible products. There are so many possibilities.

But I don't want someone to run with it and put words in my mouth....

But I do hope Tom can offer both budget offerings and crazy stuff. Frankly JTR and Seaton need some competition. And SVS pretty much throwing the budget market also sucks.... So here's hoping.

ShaunH
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post #19 of 28 Old 10-30-2011, 06:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shadyJ View Post

Ed Mullen says there are no plans for the SB16 at the moment, thanks to crazy neodymium prices, here is the link. Doesn't look like its going to happen until rare earth magnets prices settle down, and with the way things are going, that could be years from now.

why would the magnet for that driver need to be neo? HT customers generally don't care much about the weight of a sub.
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post #20 of 28 Old 10-30-2011, 10:55 AM
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Originally Posted by rick240 View Post

It should be noted that non-competes are non-enforceable in many jurisdictions, including California.

True, but sale of a business/shares noncompetes (as opposed to simple employee noncompetes) are enforceable in all US jurisdictions, even in California.
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post #21 of 28 Old 10-30-2011, 11:01 AM
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Originally Posted by vitaminbass View Post

why would the magnet for that driver need to be neo? HT customers generally don't care much about the weight of a sub.

The added weight of a non-neo to get the same magnetic power, shows up in shipping and handling costs all the way around....not just to the customer.

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post #22 of 28 Old 10-30-2011, 10:43 PM
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I think I found the site url. Tom will have to let us know if its wrong. But I think its the right one.

http://www.powersoundaudio.com/Home.html

ShaunH
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post #23 of 28 Old 11-06-2011, 11:54 AM
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Hi All,

Sorry for the delayed response, as I'm sure you can all imagine...things are bit busy right now.

That is indeed the correct url. We have decided to keep the rest of the website private until product launch is a bit closer. We are putting the final touches on several designs and updates are not far off.

Thanks to everyone for the well wishes, that means a lot.

Tom V.
Power Sound Audio
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post #24 of 28 Old 11-08-2011, 05:23 PM
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This is most excellent news, especially since I will need another sub soon. I have an early-days SVS round sub. It's held up very well despite some hard driving and still looks in almost new condition. I seem to recall that I dealt with Tom before the purchase, back when SVS was just getting started.

That sub aint going anywhere. Just need a new one for the home addition!
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post #25 of 28 Old 11-09-2011, 01:18 PM
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somewhat related but to clarfy...

non-compeats are tough to inforce from and employee - employer relationship especially if the employee's education, vocational training or past job experience has been in the same field for a prolonged period of time. ex: if you have been a plumber for 25 yrs its tough for Fix a Leak Inc to enforce or have a judge uphold a NCA.

now if TV somehow had proprietary knowledge or high level intelectual property that would compromise current and future product distribution and development well that is a tad different. lastly if TV was bought out somehow by a third party then part of what the buyer was buying was TV's contribution to the business in any form or funtion and this was a covenant [condition of the sale/transfer] then that is indeed inforcable because that is part or in whole what the buyer is purchasing.

no i'm not a lawyer but deal with this in the real world from time to time.

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post #26 of 28 Old 11-09-2011, 04:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mmiles View Post

somewhat related but to clarfy...

non-compeats are tough to inforce from and employee - employer relationship especially if the employee's education, vocational training or past job experience has been in the same field for a prolonged period of time. ex: if you have been a plumber for 25 yrs its tough for Fix a Leak Inc to enforce or have a judge uphold a NCA.

now if TV somehow had proprietary knowledge or high level intelectual property that would compromise current and future product distribution and development well that is a tad different. lastly if TV was bought out somehow by a third party then part of what the buyer was buying was TV's contribution to the business in any form or funtion and this was a covenant [condition of the sale/transfer] then that is indeed inforcable because that is part or in whole what the buyer is purchasing.

no i'm not a lawyer but deal with this in the real world from time to time.

Tom V was a co-founder and he was the Directer of R&D and head of Tech support while he was with SVS. Many of Toms designs ideas and preferences are no doubt involved in past and current SVS products. Keep in mind Tom was still head of R&D when the original Bash Amp ultra 13 subs came out. Also keep in mind that Tom surely wanted to keep positive relationships within the industry. It was likely best to just go with the non compete. Rather than screw any older suppler relationships that would be beneficial now that Power Sound Audio is going public.

But I think we need to make a new thread for Power Sound Audio. So people know a new company is opening up.

I think I might do that.....

Made a new thread specifically about Power Sound Audio

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1372020

ShaunH
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post #27 of 28 Old 02-08-2012, 06:59 PM
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I'm still wait, but no action yet

Anyone got any new info if this is going to happen?

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post #28 of 28 Old 02-09-2012, 02:24 PM
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I'm a bit late to this thread, but I'm glad to see Tom V is still around. When I was in the market for a new sub about 9-10 years ago, I came across SVS in these forums. I'd never bought any audio equipment online before and was a bit nervous doing so. Tom went out of his way to answer my many, many questions and address my concerns. He even offered to recommend a sub I could buy from a local shop and help me set it up If I was just too uncomfortable ordering from an online company.

I was so impressed with Tom's handling of my situation and combined with all the positive feedback about SVS in these forums, I ordered a 16-46PC Plus. Nine years later I'm still enjoying my SVS sub.

Thanks Tom!

I'm looking forward to seeing what you have to offer next.


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