Originally Posted by GermanMan
So there it is... well, its me counting the chickens a bit early, but people have put their hands on things and the gear is available... all in rosenut, some of it in B-Stock / Store Demo.. but I'm fine in using gear someone breathed on so long as its not damaged or electrically abused....
I promised an update on things and now is a good time to provide that since gear is connected and is operating.
Let me preface with: I'm really disappointed (though maybe should not be surprised by) the Bowers & Wilkins supply chain. For a company that extracts maximum profit from its product sales by enforcing such a strict supply chain from factory to end consumer, the execution of the supply chain, as implemented from England through to the United States is not very good. The transparency of the chain to the end retailer - the only point of contact the end consumer has, is awful. Even the end retail doesn't get clear information. What flows down from B&W could be true but just as likely could be totally false. Thats pretty bad when such a tight supply chain could be easily enough queried to get an answer rather than guesses. I'd expect my Radio Shack guy to make up stuff or guess when I'm buying $100 worth of electronics. Not when I'm buying $10,000 worth of speakers.
To recap: My intent was to purchase five 8-series Standard spec speakers: 2x 803S, 2x 805S, 1x HTM3S, all in rosenut, back in November on the Thanksgiving weekend. Then the fun began. Order was taken and weeks later I was informed that no new
rosenut 803S's existed, but a new HTM3S did and 805S's were on their way from England. That deteriorated into no 805S's were likely to be seen from England but I could have the store demo 805S's and finally, this past week, right before delivery, that while a new HTM3S was ordered and supposedly shipped, a refurb HTM3S was delivered.
So there I stood, with five rosenut speakers (and the only new items, the FS-805 stands) ready to be delivered, but rather than all new, ALL of the speakers were store demo/bstock/refurb. Not what one expects, but when looking to get the gear and the gear has been discontinued, one is willing to make do with what one can find. Especially as I cannot justify the significantly higher cost of going with all 2010 D class speakers.
But, as I'd inspected the 805S's, and was assured I could return the entire set if there was a problem, I said: send them on over. Now I've got a hall way stacked full of very large cardboard boxes and the speakers set up in the room.
There was a small (tiny, pin-head sized) nick on the top of one of the 805S's I knew about going in. No visible damage to the HTM3S. The 803S's, which had been taken back due to their boxes being damaged and had sat in Boston waiting for new boxes to allow them to be shipped to the west coast looked ok except for one speaker had a dent on the finish, just smaller than a dime, on the back side, where the veneer shows a very slight indentation. Likely the result of whatever damaged the box for it. Listening to the speakers, nothing sounded amiss.
So my attempt to purchase 5 new high end speakers resulted in me purchasing 5 used/b-stock high end speakers, but at least with full manufacturers warranty. It doesn't bother me so much because unless you live alone and are very careful, you will inevitably ding the cabinets of your gear. Heck, I dinged the Sanus console just in trying to put it together (and those things nick just if you look at them funny... talk about sensitive veneer). So a tiny nick you need a magnifying glass to really see, or a small dent in the veneer on the back side no one will see are irrelevant to me. In exchange for the state, I was able to get the order at 25% off of retail, which, for me, was a satisfactory arrangement so long as electrically and acoustically the speakers performed as they should.
So given it is winter and the trucks and warehouse where cold, I'm allowing some time to get up to temperature and humidity in the house... but so far I'm very happy with the set. I've got to get used to the difference in sound from the much brighter sounding Infinity bookshelf's from 1990. My initial impression was that the sound was muddy, but I am hearing things in just broadcast 5.1 soundtracks I've not heard before. I've got another week to listen to them and be able to change my mind.
Has anyone else experienced this phenomenon coming from a much brighter speaker to the 803/HTM3 line to feel they sound a bit odd
? I'm feeling its the same way that the built in TV speakers sound nicer to the external speakers... because the smaller speakers are just more focused on that important midrange (and limited to it).