Philharmonic Audio - Dennis Murphy - Page 279 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #8341 of 8961 Old 04-20-2019, 10:38 PM
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I think what most people haven’t paid attention to is the words coming out of Dennis’ keyboard. Didn’t anyone notice he ended up spending a tremendous amount of his own money? So as you complain about the increase in the Salks you are comparing it to a number that is wrong. Dennis might have been doing the work at just above cost. But there are more costs to getting a quality speaker into the customer’s hands than drivers, cabinets, crossovers, and labor. Whoever he was using to ship was trashing his work and his bank account. He was really losing his ass on shipping issues. Plus Salk has employees and all the pay, insurance, equipment and coatings. Salk sound is quite successful and positioned the 3 way BMR $800 BELOW his 2 way offering that bottoms 11 Hz higher. Considering Dennis is involved in designing all is Salks speakers. The BMR was his baby. I think the price of the Salk BMR only hurts when you compare it to the price that was a one way ticket to Bankruptcy. The BMR digs as deep as most of Salks floorstanders that are considerably more. For reference it’s over a thousand dollars less than the song 3 BeAT.
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post #8342 of 8961 Old 04-20-2019, 10:51 PM
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To be clear, the 34Hz spec is more in-room, and not truly anechoic, but it's still very good.

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post #8343 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 04:41 AM
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Originally Posted by duckymomo View Post
Fantastic, are you going to keep repeating the same thing over and over and over again?

Dennis almost died, luckily the speaker is still available albeit at a higher price. That may or may not work for everyone. Move on with your life.

Reading the last few pages has been as much fun as nails on a chalkboard.
I'm not quite sure the relevance of this statement at all, other than for emotional guilt tripping. Dennis didn't "almost die" because the BMR was priced the way it was. I won't rehash all of what was said, but it was a combination of things.

My view point in no way disparages Dennis character, nor makes light of what he went through. But neither of those are de facto rationales for a 50% increase in the cost of the BMR. You may not like my math, and you may infer all you like, but it is what it is. "Moving on with [my] life" seems to be the universal internet trope of people who really mean "I don't like your opinion, can answer your reasoning, so please stop posting".

Let me know when you buy a pair, or convince a friend to buy one, at the new price.

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post #8344 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 04:52 AM
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As has already been mentioned, with overhead and other costs, you have no idea what the margins on a particular product are. Nor are you owed some sort of explanation for the pricing.

Most people who can't understand this have never owned or run a business before.

If the new pricing doesn't work for you, I have a groundbreaking solution......don't buy them and stop whining about it.
Well, you've no idea who has run/owned a business or not, now do you? Backhand ad hominems because you don't like a certain perspective expressed are not a way to either have a discussion or educate people.

No one, and certainly not myself, is "whining" about the pricing, just pointing out inconvenient data regarding it that you seem to take offense over. Honestly, if anyone is "whining", it would seem to be those who keep "whining" about THAT.

As I've said numerous times, and should be obvious to all, I am NOT in the market for BMRs, I own a pair, am seriously enamored of them, and am having a center to mate with them designed. It is NOT my own financial interests that concern me, nor even Salk's.

I will be interested when the first few who must evidently be lined up to purchase the Salk version of the BMR start posting on here.
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post #8345 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 05:09 AM
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One thing I don’t understand is why there aren’t more companies offering ribbon tweeters? At the Florida Audio Expo there were a lot of Be tweeters... and those on the $4k Ryan monitors sounded great.

I just saw that Tekton is offering a Be tweeter on their Lore for $1300??


Salk took his new Be speaker to Axpona.... but on the other hand the new ribbon Maggie LRS is getting great reviews.


Maybe the takeaway is their are more and more good sounding options... and some are actually affordable.
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post #8346 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 05:16 AM
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One thing I don’t understand is why there aren’t more companies offering ribbon tweeters? At the Florida Audio Expo there were a lot of Be tweeters... and those on the $4k Ryan monitors sounded great.

I just saw that Tekton is offering a Be tweeter on their Lore for $1300??


Salk took his new Be speaker to Axpona.... but on the other hand the new ribbon Maggie LRS is getting great reviews.


Maybe the takeaway is their are more and more good sounding options... and some are actually affordable.
Absolutely agree. The new Maggie LRS seems to be a giant killer, especially for those interested more in music than HT and are looking for transparent towers that throw a wide and deep soundstage.

A Be tweeter in a $1300 speaker seems crazy. Any reviews on these yet?

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post #8347 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 06:12 AM
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I'm not quite sure the relevance of this statement at all, other than for emotional guilt tripping. Dennis didn't "almost die" because the BMR was priced the way it was. I won't rehash all of what was said, but it was a combination of things.
Guilt tripping? You realize Salk didn't have to offer the BMRs right? They could just as easily been gone for good.

The operative word for this discussion would be "perspective". You might want to have some.

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My view point in no way disparages Dennis character, nor makes light of what he went through. But neither of those are de facto rationales for a 50% increase in the cost of the BMR. You may not like my math, and you may infer all you like, but it is what it is.
I never said anything about liking or not liking your "math". The bottom line is you have no idea what production of the new BMR is costing Salk or what their margins are, period. That's the math, whether you like it or not.

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"Moving on with [my] life" seems to be the universal internet trope of people who really mean "I don't like your opinion, can answer your reasoning, so please stop posting".
LOL, no "moving on with [your] life" is a great advice for someone who keeps endlessly repeating the same thing over and over.

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Let me know when you buy a pair, or convince a friend to buy one, at the new price.
What does me purchasing or convincing someone to purchase a pair have to do with the price of tea in China? You might want to actually read my posts, I haven't made any statement about the pricing being good or bad.



Speaking of repeating yourself, you're so eager to post about this injustice, you replied to a comment below that wasn't even directed at you. But since you did, I'm happy to respond.

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Well, you've no idea who has run/owned a business or not, now do you? Backhand ad hominems because you don't like a certain perspective expressed are not a way to either have a discussion or educate people. No one, and certainly not myself, is "whining" about the pricing, just pointing out inconvenient data regarding it that you seem to take offense over. Honestly, if anyone is "whining", it would seem to be those who keep "whining" about THAT.
Wow, I didn't know that questioning whether or not someone owned/or ran a business is now an "Backhand ad hominems"

Yes, of course you're not "whining" with your 25 posts repeating yourself about how wrong the price is. You know what they say, if it looks like a duck.....
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post #8348 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 06:17 AM
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Yes, of course you're not "whining" with your 25 posts repeating yourself about how wrong the price is. You know what they say, if it looks like a duck.....
You can't help yourself, can you?

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post #8349 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 06:20 AM
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Two very positive reviews of the Lore version with the Audax gold titanium tweeter... no reviewed yet with the Be tweeter... which appears to be a Satori.
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post #8350 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 06:24 AM
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You can't help yourself, can you?
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post #8351 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 06:44 AM
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I hope that's not the Salk version of that mirror, that would be too expensive!
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post #8352 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 08:08 AM
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OK guys.

Let's give it a rest and move on.

PLEASE!
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post #8353 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 08:57 AM
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One thing I don’t understand is why there aren’t more companies offering ribbon tweeters? At the Florida Audio Expo there were a lot of Be tweeters... and those on the $4k Ryan monitors sounded great.

I just saw that Tekton is offering a Be tweeter on their Lore for $1300??


Salk took his new Be speaker to Axpona.... but on the other hand the new ribbon Maggie LRS is getting great reviews.


Maybe the takeaway is their are more and more good sounding options... and some are actually affordable.
Revel uses Be domes while ribbons, compression drivers, exist. They use them because they prefer their characteristics. They sound great, and they mesh with their driver complement. More than one way to make a great speaker.

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post #8354 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 09:19 AM
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I agree that there are lots of ways to make great sound!!! What we all need is a room that can handle at least 3 systems so we can optimize based on the music!! Maybe next life.
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post #8355 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 09:36 AM
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Just read this thread for the 1st time. What has happened here is Dennis way undercharged for a pair of speakers. Had he priced them where they should have been at in order to run a sustainable direct seller business (around $2000 with the Chinese cabinets and crossovers) Jim Salk's price with U.S made cabinets and crossovers would appear reasonable to all.

What most people don't realize is the markup most of the industry uses. And how much markup the gear that the folks who are complaining about Salk's price own has. I suppose ignorance is bliss. When one doesn't know the cost of producing the gear they own, or potentially want to buy, any price is reasonable.

I read earlier in this thread someone wrote that the profit a certain speaker manufacturer who sells through dealers makes is 30% of list price. Well that certainly is BS. As the dealers alone double the price that they're charged from the manufacturer. And that's based on their landed cost with shipping. For example, the speaker manufacturer wants $2000 for a pair of speakers. Shipping to the dealer costs $300. The MSRP for that dealer sold speaker will be $4600. The actual cost to produce the speaker may have been 30% of the $2000 dealer cost. Which works out to $600. But certainly not 30% of the MSRP.
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post #8356 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 09:36 AM
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I just came across this thread and thought a few comments might be in order.

For the past few years, we have been building and assembling BMR's, Phil 3's and other designs for Dennis Murphy. I often told Dennis he was charging far too little. I knew this because we lost money on every BMR or Phil 3 project we ever did for him. We built whatever cabinets Dennis wanted at whatever he had in his budget for them. Why would we do this? Because Dennis made a significant contribution to our business over the years and this was our way of repaying him for everything he had done for us (and never charged us).

There is a huge difference between running a commercial business and running a what is essentially a DIY operation. Dennis made some of the same pricing mistakes we made when starting our speaker business. Coming from the DIY world, we would look at the cost of the drivers and add a small profit. But we quickly discovered that the "profit" we built in did not begin to cover the cost of the cabinets. They are the single costliest part of a speaker system. Since DIYers supply all the labor, they don't take those costs into consideration. They do not pay rent for a production facility, they have no worker's comp or business insurance, they pay no salaries, make no social security contributions, etc.

When I see comments about speaker prices being too high, I know one thing for certain: the person making the comment has never run a commercial speaker building operation.

If you fail to consider costs, like shipping damage for example, you will not remain in business very long. And that is only one cost most individuals would fail to consider.

Over the years, I have seen many DIY speaker builders enter the business and watched many of them fail. They failed for one reason only: they did not consider ALL of the costs involved in running a business of this type. This is natural since some costs are not all that visible and are easy to overlook.

In this case, Dennis was essentially supplying free labor. When he started receiving more orders, he couldn't afford to hire all the help he needed. He was basically losing money and was no longer personally able to handle the work load. In the end, the stress was too much to bear.

We simply don't have the option of providing free labor and there is a good deal of labor involved in building speakers. It is the single largest cost driver. For example, point to point hand wiring the crossovers takes quite a few hours for a 3-way design. Dennis never charged for this. We have no choice.

And there are other costs that most people don't consider. We are constantly replacing routers. Saw blades and router bits need sharpening and/or replacing. We spend about $500 a week for finish. About $500 per week for standard veneers. Shipping cartons and packing foam runs about $250 a week. Even the cost of sandpaper is significant. The list goes on and the costs are real.

When we first considered taking our DIY speaker building operation commercial, I asked for advice from people in the industry. To a person they offered no encouragement. They said it was too competitive and there is no way you could make any money at it. They said we would be doomed to fail.

Well, that was about 17 years ago and we are still here. For 17 years, we have met payroll, paid rent, paid all of our suppliers, contributed greatly to shipping and credit card companies, etc. Some years we make a small profit. Some years we don't. That is how tightly we price our products. Why would we do this?

We do this because we love what we do. We love being able to bring joy to our owners. We also do this because it provides us with an opportunity to enhance the quality of life for our employees (some of whom had few options in life before we came along).

Our goal has always been to provide world-class speakers, finished to our customers desires, at a price that is about 1/2 or less of what that same speaker would cost if sold at retail.

When Dennis asked us to consider adding his speaker models to our offerings, we thought about it long and hard. There was simply no way of offering them at a price that wouldn't seem high compared to what Dennis was charging. At the same time, the BMR design was simply too good to let expire.

When considering whether or not to offer this model, we asked ourselves a very simple question. Is there a $2600 speaker on the market that would out-perform the 3-way BMR's? We're not aware of one. This is a great design that delivers real value.

The nice thing for consumers is that there are many purchasing options in the speaker world -- many more today than when we entered the business. So consumers have a choice. In the end, the market will decide if the BMR's are worth $2600. If the market decides they are not, the design will fade into history. But I suspect once the initial reaction to the increased price wears off, we will be producing quite a few pairs of these speakers in the coming years. They are that good.

- Jim

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Custom-crafted Speakers

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post #8357 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 09:53 AM
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Originally Posted by jsalk View Post
I just came across this thread and thought a few comments might be in order.

For the past few years, we have been building and assembling BMR's, Phil 3's and other designs for Dennis Murphy. I often told Dennis he was charging far too little. I knew this because we lost money on every BMR or Phil 3 project we ever did for him. We built whatever cabinets Dennis wanted at whatever he had in his budget for them. Why would we do this? Because Dennis made a significant contribution to our business over the years and this was our way of repaying him for everything he had done for us (and never charged us).

There is a huge difference between running a commercial business and running a what is essentially a DIY operation. Dennis made some of the same pricing mistakes we made when starting our speaker business. Coming from the DIY world, we would look at the cost of the drivers and add a small profit. But we quickly discovered that the "profit" we built in did not begin to cover the cost of the cabinets. They are the single costliest part of a speaker system. Since DIYers supply all the labor, they don't take those costs into consideration. They do not pay rent for a production facility, they have no worker's comp or business insurance, they pay no salaries, make no social security contributions, etc.

When I see comments about speaker prices being too high, I know one thing for certain: the person making the comment has never run a commercial speaker building operation.

If you fail to consider costs, like shipping damage for example, you will not remain in business very long. And that is only one cost most individuals would fail to consider.

Over the years, I have seen many DIY speaker builders enter the business and watched many of them fail. They failed for one reason only: they did not consider ALL of the costs involved in running a business of this type. This is natural since some costs are not all that visible and are easy to overlook.

In this case, Dennis was essentially supplying free labor. When he started receiving more orders, he couldn't afford to hire all the help he needed. He was basically losing money and was no longer personally able to handle the work load. In the end, the stress was too much to bear.

We simply don't have the option of providing free labor and there is a good deal of labor involved in building speakers. It is the single largest cost driver. For example, point to point hand wiring the crossovers takes quite a few hours for a 3-way design. Dennis never charged for this. We have no choice.

And there are other costs that most people don't consider. We are constantly replacing routers. Saw blades and router bits need sharpening and/or replacing. We spend about $500 a week for finish. About $500 per week for standard veneers. Shipping cartons and packing foam runs about $250 a week. Even the cost of sandpaper is significant. The list goes on and the costs are real.

When we first considered taking our DIY speaker building operation commercial, I asked for advice from people in the industry. To a person they offered no encouragement. They said it was too competitive and there is no way you could make any money at it. They said we would be doomed to fail.

Well, that was about 17 years ago and we are still here. For 17 years, we have met payroll, paid rent, paid all of our suppliers, contributed greatly to shipping and credit card companies, etc. Some years we make a small profit. Some years we don't. That is how tightly we price our products. Why would we do this?

We do this because we love what we do. We love being able to bring joy to our owners. We also do this because it provides us with an opportunity to enhance the quality of life for our employees (some of whom had few options in life before we came along).

Our goal has always been to provide world-class speakers, finished to our customers desires, at a price that is about 1/2 or less of what that same speaker would cost if sold at retail.

When Dennis asked us to consider adding his speaker models to our offerings, we thought about it long and hard. There was simply no way of offering them at a price that wouldn't seem high compared to what Dennis was charging. At the same time, the BMR design was simply too good to let expire.

When considering whether or not to offer this model, we asked ourselves a very simple question. Is there a $2600 speaker on the market that would out-perform the 3-way BMR's? We're not aware of one. This is a great design that delivers real value.

The nice thing for consumers is that there are many purchasing options in the speaker world -- many more today than when we entered the business. So consumers have a choice. In the end, the market will decide if the BMR's are worth $2600. If the market decides they are not, the design will fade into history. But I suspect once the initial reaction to the increased price wears off, we will be producing quite a few pairs of these speakers in the coming years. They are that good.

- Jim
this somewhat confirms the thought that Dennis was providing a "public service" for the audio community .. some of us that struggle to buy $1000 offerings aren't going to be able to afford the price hike , but that doesn't discount it being needed...in one of my posts i eluded to Dennis' business model one one end and walmart /amazon on the other, with Dennis ' being "generous"/ fair and walmart / amazon on the "other end "(inherent greed) of the spectrum .. for the sake of argument i left out the entire subset of "normal operations" .. i believe Salk Audio falls into this category of speaker/ audio sales...

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post #8358 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 11:01 AM
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I just came across this thread and thought a few comments might be in order.

.....

Thanks for chiming in, Jim. While your points won't necessarily convince every last person (i.e., you can never please everybody), it certainly does help fill the void of information where speculation would otherwise continue to run rampant. Personally, as someone who has been reading along and finding some merit in all sides being argued, your contextual feedback here has been very compelling to me.

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post #8359 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 11:05 AM
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I just came across this thread and thought a few comments might be in order............
- Jim
Thanks for taking the time to post this. I've owned and operated several business myself and I found your experiences to be similar to mine. It wasn't until I raised prices and stopped trying to be the lowest cost provider that I actually made a profit and successfully and grew the businesses. Sometimes potential clients would complain that there were other cheaper options. I would tell them about the quality and value of our products/services and if that wasn't important to them, then a lower cost option would be better. A lot of them did choose us, but no sleep was lost over the ones that didn't. In fact, as our prices went up, we had less customer issues to deal with.

One of the things that irritated me was customers trying to tell me how much I should charge for something and what's "fair" or a "ripoff", like they had any clue about my costs and expenses. I was more than happy to fire those customers.

If you perpetually chase the price-conscious consumer, you'll eventually run your business into the ground. The big players can afford to sell some products or services at cost or a loss, because they have sufficient funding and other business objectives (i.e. Amazon's growth at all costs strategy).
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post #8360 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 11:25 AM
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Originally Posted by jsalk View Post
I just came across this thread and thought a few comments might be in order.

{snip}

If you fail to consider costs, like shipping damage for example, you will not remain in business very long. And that is only one cost most individuals would fail to consider.

Over the years, I have seen many DIY speaker builders enter the business and watched many of them fail. They failed for one reason only: they did not consider ALL of the costs involved in running a business of this type. This is natural since some costs are not all that visible and are easy to overlook.



- Jim
I too, appreciate the input Jim. I'm glad the BMR is not going away, I remain skeptical that it will sell well at that price point. This is not a knock on you or your motivations. Just an observation from someone's who lived awhile and understands something of human nature. Nevertheless, I wish you well. You've a great product, no doubt.
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post #8361 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 11:35 AM
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As you know, the whole subject of pricing is complex. If you have a one off product...you have to price profitably. If you have a sequential line of products that someone can move up, you may price your entry product with a lower profit to build brand loyalty.

As an example... if the new Maggie LRS turns out to be 85% of their sales because no one moves up.... big problem I suspect.

One more thing, Salk speakers hold their value and are easy to resell... this makes their true cost of ownership lower for those who do eventually move on or move up.

And Jim didn’t say it but I suspect his repeat buyer percentage is very high... great sound...great responsiveness... beautiful finishes...easy to resell... hmmm, sounds like Lexus... but thankfully Salk is made in America... Pontiac Michigan... former hone of Pontic Motors.
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post #8362 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 12:04 PM
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LP & Ducky.... yikes....please start a business ethics and philosophy thread and let this thread return to loudspeakers.

By the way... here is an interesting BMR link talking about how good the speaker sounds and compares.


https://forums.audioholics.com/forum...ickoff.111717/
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post #8363 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 12:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jsalk View Post
I just came across this thread and thought a few comments might be in order.

For the past few years, we have been building and assembling BMR's, Phil 3's and other designs for Dennis Murphy. I often told Dennis he was charging far too little. I knew this because we lost money on every BMR or Phil 3 project we ever did for him. We built whatever cabinets Dennis wanted at whatever he had in his budget for them. Why would we do this? Because Dennis made a significant contribution to our business over the years and this was our way of repaying him for everything he had done for us (and never charged us).

There is a huge difference between running a commercial business and running a what is essentially a DIY operation. Dennis made some of the same pricing mistakes we made when starting our speaker business. Coming from the DIY world, we would look at the cost of the drivers and add a small profit. But we quickly discovered that the "profit" we built in did not begin to cover the cost of the cabinets. They are the single costliest part of a speaker system. Since DIYers supply all the labor, they don't take those costs into consideration. They do not pay rent for a production facility, they have no worker's comp or business insurance, they pay no salaries, make no social security contributions, etc.

When I see comments about speaker prices being too high, I know one thing for certain: the person making the comment has never run a commercial speaker building operation.

If you fail to consider costs, like shipping damage for example, you will not remain in business very long. And that is only one cost most individuals would fail to consider.

Over the years, I have seen many DIY speaker builders enter the business and watched many of them fail. They failed for one reason only: they did not consider ALL of the costs involved in running a business of this type. This is natural since some costs are not all that visible and are easy to overlook.

In this case, Dennis was essentially supplying free labor. When he started receiving more orders, he couldn't afford to hire all the help he needed. He was basically losing money and was no longer personally able to handle the work load. In the end, the stress was too much to bear.

We simply don't have the option of providing free labor and there is a good deal of labor involved in building speakers. It is the single largest cost driver. For example, point to point hand wiring the crossovers takes quite a few hours for a 3-way design. Dennis never charged for this. We have no choice.

And there are other costs that most people don't consider. We are constantly replacing routers. Saw blades and router bits need sharpening and/or replacing. We spend about $500 a week for finish. About $500 per week for standard veneers. Shipping cartons and packing foam runs about $250 a week. Even the cost of sandpaper is significant. The list goes on and the costs are real.

When we first considered taking our DIY speaker building operation commercial, I asked for advice from people in the industry. To a person they offered no encouragement. They said it was too competitive and there is no way you could make any money at it. They said we would be doomed to fail.

Well, that was about 17 years ago and we are still here. For 17 years, we have met payroll, paid rent, paid all of our suppliers, contributed greatly to shipping and credit card companies, etc. Some years we make a small profit. Some years we don't. That is how tightly we price our products. Why would we do this?

We do this because we love what we do. We love being able to bring joy to our owners. We also do this because it provides us with an opportunity to enhance the quality of life for our employees (some of whom had few options in life before we came along).

Our goal has always been to provide world-class speakers, finished to our customers desires, at a price that is about 1/2 or less of what that same speaker would cost if sold at retail.

When Dennis asked us to consider adding his speaker models to our offerings, we thought about it long and hard. There was simply no way of offering them at a price that wouldn't seem high compared to what Dennis was charging. At the same time, the BMR design was simply too good to let expire.

When considering whether or not to offer this model, we asked ourselves a very simple question. Is there a $2600 speaker on the market that would out-perform the 3-way BMR's? We're not aware of one. This is a great design that delivers real value.

The nice thing for consumers is that there are many purchasing options in the speaker world -- many more today than when we entered the business. So consumers have a choice. In the end, the market will decide if the BMR's are worth $2600. If the market decides they are not, the design will fade into history. But I suspect once the initial reaction to the increased price wears off, we will be producing quite a few pairs of these speakers in the coming years. They are that good.

- Jim
Thank you, Jim, for coming through and posting again. I didn't feel comfortable sharing some of that info you and Dennis had both shared with me. I appreciate your candor.

As I said to you in one of our communications: "Just turning on the lights in the morning costs you money!" I worked for a manufacturing company a while back: when we did inventory one year, it was in the dark because they didn't want to pay for the electricity! Ha! [read: :/ ]



I said it many posts back: I am glad it is you carrying the BMR torch forward. Though I might not be able to add another pair to my rig, now, I can't think of a better way for these amazing speakers to keep on keeping on.



Best to you, Jim! Good luck with the BMRs!

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post #8364 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 01:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jsalk View Post

When we first considered taking our DIY speaker building operation commercial, I asked for advice from people in the industry. To a person they offered no encouragement. They said it was too competitive and there is no way you could make any money at it. They said we would be doomed to fail.

Well, that was about 17 years ago and we are still here. For 17 years, we have met payroll, paid rent, paid all of our suppliers, contributed greatly to shipping and credit card companies, etc. Some years we make a small profit. Some years we don't. That is how tightly we price our products. Why would we do this?

We do this because we love what we do. We love being able to bring joy to our owners. We also do this because it provides us with an opportunity to enhance the quality of life for our employees (some of whom had few options in life before we came along).

Our goal has always been to provide world-class speakers, finished to our customers desires, at a price that is about 1/2 or less of what that same speaker would cost if sold at retail.

When Dennis asked us to consider adding his speaker models to our offerings, we thought about it long and hard. There was simply no way of offering them at a price that wouldn't seem high compared to what Dennis was charging. At the same time, the BMR design was simply too good to let expire.

When considering whether or not to offer this model, we asked ourselves a very simple question. Is there a $2600 speaker on the market that would out-perform the 3-way BMR's? We're not aware of one. This is a great design that delivers real value.


- Jim
Jim, your response is another reason why I'm proudly enjoying my Song3's. If the BMR debuted on the market at $2600 this debate wouldn't exist. Instead, the debate would likely be why spend more on a speaker?

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post #8365 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 01:53 PM
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LP & Ducky.... yikes....please start a business ethics and philosophy thread and let this thread return to loudspeakers.

By the way... here is an interesting BMR link talking about how good the speaker sounds and compares.


https://forums.audioholics.com/forum...ickoff.111717/
Agreed

*************************


I've deleted a number of posts from both parties. Please take your beef to PM or better yet just stop. If it continues, then infractions will be issued as well as a thread ban.
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post #8366 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 02:41 PM
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Philharmonic Audio - Dennis Murphy

Quote:
Originally Posted by jsalk View Post
I just came across this thread and thought a few comments might be in order.



For the past few years, we have been building and assembling BMR's, Phil 3's and other designs for Dennis Murphy. I often told Dennis he was charging far too little. I knew this because we lost money on every BMR or Phil 3 project we ever did for him. We built whatever cabinets Dennis wanted at whatever he had in his budget for them. Why would we do this? Because Dennis made a significant contribution to our business over the years and this was our way of repaying him for everything he had done for us (and never charged us).



There is a huge difference between running a commercial business and running a what is essentially a DIY operation. Dennis made some of the same pricing mistakes we made when starting our speaker business. Coming from the DIY world, we would look at the cost of the drivers and add a small profit. But we quickly discovered that the "profit" we built in did not begin to cover the cost of the cabinets. They are the single costliest part of a speaker system. Since DIYers supply all the labor, they don't take those costs into consideration. They do not pay rent for a production facility, they have no worker's comp or business insurance, they pay no salaries, make no social security contributions, etc.



When I see comments about speaker prices being too high, I know one thing for certain: the person making the comment has never run a commercial speaker building operation.



If you fail to consider costs, like shipping damage for example, you will not remain in business very long. And that is only one cost most individuals would fail to consider.



Over the years, I have seen many DIY speaker builders enter the business and watched many of them fail. They failed for one reason only: they did not consider ALL of the costs involved in running a business of this type. This is natural since some costs are not all that visible and are easy to overlook.



In this case, Dennis was essentially supplying free labor. When he started receiving more orders, he couldn't afford to hire all the help he needed. He was basically losing money and was no longer personally able to handle the work load. In the end, the stress was too much to bear.



We simply don't have the option of providing free labor and there is a good deal of labor involved in building speakers. It is the single largest cost driver. For example, point to point hand wiring the crossovers takes quite a few hours for a 3-way design. Dennis never charged for this. We have no choice.



And there are other costs that most people don't consider. We are constantly replacing routers. Saw blades and router bits need sharpening and/or replacing. We spend about $500 a week for finish. About $500 per week for standard veneers. Shipping cartons and packing foam runs about $250 a week. Even the cost of sandpaper is significant. The list goes on and the costs are real.



When we first considered taking our DIY speaker building operation commercial, I asked for advice from people in the industry. To a person they offered no encouragement. They said it was too competitive and there is no way you could make any money at it. They said we would be doomed to fail.



Well, that was about 17 years ago and we are still here. For 17 years, we have met payroll, paid rent, paid all of our suppliers, contributed greatly to shipping and credit card companies, etc. Some years we make a small profit. Some years we don't. That is how tightly we price our products. Why would we do this?



We do this because we love what we do. We love being able to bring joy to our owners. We also do this because it provides us with an opportunity to enhance the quality of life for our employees (some of whom had few options in life before we came along).



Our goal has always been to provide world-class speakers, finished to our customers desires, at a price that is about 1/2 or less of what that same speaker would cost if sold at retail.



When Dennis asked us to consider adding his speaker models to our offerings, we thought about it long and hard. There was simply no way of offering them at a price that wouldn't seem high compared to what Dennis was charging. At the same time, the BMR design was simply too good to let expire.



When considering whether or not to offer this model, we asked ourselves a very simple question. Is there a $2600 speaker on the market that would out-perform the 3-way BMR's? We're not aware of one. This is a great design that delivers real value.



The nice thing for consumers is that there are many purchasing options in the speaker world -- many more today than when we entered the business. So consumers have a choice. In the end, the market will decide if the BMR's are worth $2600. If the market decides they are not, the design will fade into history. But I suspect once the initial reaction to the increased price wears off, we will be producing quite a few pairs of these speakers in the coming years. They are that good.



- Jim


Jim,

Thank you!

Dennis we are looking forward to you being back designing and enjoying life!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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post #8367 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 02:55 PM
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Quote:
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Agreed



*************************





I've deleted a number of posts from both parties. Please take your beef to PM or better yet just stop. If it continues, then infractions will be issued as well as a thread ban.


Thank you! Dennis doesn’t deserve this aggravation on his thread.


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post #8368 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 03:52 PM
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Instead of posting on the DYI forum I thought these videos might be of interest here in light of the recent discussion about production costs, especially labor. They demonstrate first the skilled construction and finishing of a very attractive cherry bookshelf speaker and then wiring of the speaker, all from scratch. They are interesting in many ways. Even starting with "kits" instead of raw lumber, the steps required for assembly are time consuming, and to think of doing this many times a month is, well, you'll get the picture. Hope you enjoy this....


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post #8369 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 04:42 PM
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One thing I don’t understand is why there aren’t more companies offering ribbon tweeters? At the Florida Audio Expo there were a lot of Be tweeters... and those on the $4k Ryan monitors sounded great.

I just saw that Tekton is offering a Be tweeter on their Lore for $1300??


Salk took his new Be speaker to Axpona.... but on the other hand the new ribbon Maggie LRS is getting great reviews.


Maybe the takeaway is their are more and more good sounding options... and some are actually affordable.
Looking at OEM pricing, the Audax gold tweeter is $106/ea or $212 for a pair, the SB Acoustics Be Satori tweeter is $385/ea or $770 a pair.

So the price increase you would think should be $560 from the Lore to Lore Be. If you look at a typical retail brand like Revel, the price increase from F208 to F228 is $5000 even though the extra price of the ceramic woofers is only about $500, and the increase cost for SB Acoustics Be tweeters at most is another $600.

So Revel is marking up the price of the newer drivers by 5x compared to market price (I know they pay much less so the markup is even higher), whereas it looks like Tekton is actually underpricing it based on market value. Tekton obviously buys tweeters at high volume but even considering the volume discount, they aren't passing the price to the consumer or marking it up multiple times.

P.S. Although I have to say a 1" tweeter mated to a 10" mid seems like a flawed design even if the parts are high quality...I don't think you can cross that tweeter lower than 1500 or 1600hz.

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post #8370 of 8961 Old 04-21-2019, 06:25 PM
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Sure, maybe Salk is priced higher than you and Bluesdaddy would like - for custom made speakers hand-made in the US-and that's your choice. Sure you can get a less than BMR (using the SB Acoustic woofer costs less than the BMR Revelator woofer and a BZ Labs tweeter - not a RAAL AND using a China-made cabinet which doesn't go as low) by buying a

http://www.selahaudio.com/filarmonica for $2150.

More power to ya!



Oh yeah, the kit is only $950 but without the cabinet so that tells you how much they charge for a Chinese cabinet and the price to assemble it for you, right in line with Salk.


Anyway, I was just saying that most companies have a LOT more expenses than Dennis did. I guess I shouldn't have said "everyone" in my last sentence - just most people.
The price is $1,850/pair and this includes shipping to the mainland USA. The pictured cabinet was sourced from China and from the same supplier that Dennis was using for some of his designs. Current production is here in the USA for all of our cabinets and we no longer import any cabinets.

As far as the pricing of the parts the BMR doesn't use the Revelator woofer and has the less expensive Scan-Speak 18W8545. The SB Acoustics woofer utilizes more current engineering and was designed by former Scan-Speak engineers. It costs less because of where it's made (Indonesia) by a highly vertical-integrated company with large scale production abilities. If the same driver was produced in Denmark by Scan-Speak the cost would be much higher. The Filarmonica's midrange cost is twice as much as the BMR midrange and the tweeter similar in cost to the RAAL (the latter depending on the quantity purchased).

As for the true bass extension if you look at the Audioholics ground plane measurement of the BMR and the nearfield curve for the Filarmonica you'll have a good comparison. Both measurement methods work well and don't include room gain. I never quote in-room numbers because every room is different; in addition, you have issues with a low signal-to-noise ratio giving inaccurate results.
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