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Old 25th May 2018
Gear Maniac

Originally Posted by Quetz View Post
Hi again Elliot,

So I've done as much reading and watching on the products as possible, which is pretty much everything that's out there

Me personally, I'm sold on the R8.

But people I've spoken to have raised the same concerns as others about how it's possible to achieve the standard being talked about (Prism quality conversion, Antelope quality clock etc), at this price point.

If it sounds too good to be true etc.

Hey Quetz,

Thanks for your message - glad to hear you're eyeing up a 500R8!

Your pricing is bang on! We're still working out a few little bits and bobs on the 500R8 and ADAT (there's been a few little additions since NAMM that we will share with you all soon) and so those prices may swing a little bit to reflect that - but it wont be by much if at all.

The "how can you possibly do it for the price?!" comment is something we get a lot and has generally been the same reaction we have generated with other products in our portfolio too.

The absolute truth is that we aren't cutting any corners….

I know i know, that's what they all say, but let me explain.

It all comes down to components and our willingness to delve deep into the dark corners of the market and find the components that offer the best performance for the best price. If some companies need a fader/pot, they'll just get on the phone to ALPS or Bourns and pay through the nose for something that'll do. However when we need a fader/pot, we do our homework, we get samples, we test, we measure, we test again, and find an alternative that will feel as good and be as reliable at a fraction of the cost. Better alternatives always exist... if you can be bothered to look!

We aren't buying stupidly expensive connectors. We're using discrete analogue components and designing original circuits rather than just using ICs (which are expensive). We don't use any stupidly priced op-amps like MUSE, OPA, etc... We use NJRC; that was another test, listen, measure, repeat procedure until we found something that works really well.

For converters, we are using the very latest octal offerings from AKM and Cirrus which have a great inflection point in terms of price for performance - anything cheaper makes too many sacrifices and anything that's marginally better in terms of performance costs outrageously more.

And of course, the magic bit that you can't buy is that we have expertise. We design the very best supporting circuitry for every one of those components to make sure that are running at their best and we have something that is incredibly optimised throughout. Converters are only as good as the supporting analogue circuitry; we have an analogue electronics genius on our team.

Another reason why we can achieve this kind of pricing is because we ARE going for volume. Maybe not quite a stack 'em high, sell 'em cheap mentality, but it's an aggressive but carefully calculated sales target.

The more components you buy, the cheaper they are and so we have a manufacturing schedule that enables us to get the very best prices and relay that cost-saving to you guys - rather than just line our own pockets! The markup that some (by no means all!) companies whack on their gear would make you feel rather ill!

If we only wanted to sell a dozen a month, we would not be able to achieve anywhere near this kind of pricing and the retail price would be much more inline to the other brands you mentioned.

Finally, It's our own mentality that enables us to get to these prices. We could easily make fewer units, charge more, and get by - but we aren't interested in doing that! We want to make cool stuff for a price everyone can afford and enjoy. We want to prove to ourselves - as well as the industry as a whole - that you can make stuff like this and build a brand that people trust with products that we believe in.

We aren't interested in floating companies or growth through acquisition - trust me, the word corporate really makes us shudder. But I do understand your point; sadly, a lot of people start off with good intentions and slowly fall into those traps, but I can assure you they weren't as stubborn as we are!

The only support we need is from people like yourself - our fellow engineers and musicians. We don't particularly care about pats-on-backs from industry guys. We also aren't really interested in sticking-it-to-the-man and ruining our competitors' day. We're a little insular in that respect, we honestly just want to make cool stuff that we would want to buy and - most importantly - would be proud to own.

Let us know when you get your 500R8 and let us know what you think! And If you like it, tell your friends; help us convince other people that we aren't talking nonsense! If we all work together then we can guarantee that we won't be a flash in the pan and we can go on to achieve a lot more - trust me, 500R8 only scratches the surface!

Hope that answers your questions mate! I know it’s a lot to believe… but when you get your 500R8, you’ll see for yourself!