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Is it ever going to stop?
Old 9th September 2011
  #1
Lives for gear
 
Chris Parsons's Avatar
 

Is it ever going to stop?

This is about the creation of new analog audio devices...preamps, comps, eq, etc... It's beginning to seem like every possibility is already available. I just viewed an ad showing ANOTHER eq for the 500 rack and got thinking...what doesn't already exist? One of the reasons I bring this up is that I'm a student of electrical engineering and at one point had the goal of being involved with the design of analog audio gear. I just can't see that market going anywhere though.

Ideas?
Old 9th September 2011
  #2
I'd start designing applications and interfaces for Tablet PC's. That will probably be a huge market in the near future.
Old 9th September 2011
  #3
There are many great and innovative analog devices being designed. I have a few myself.

However, the uncertainty with the government and economic policies that don't encourage developement, many including myself are holding back until the economy improves or a major change in goverment ensues.
Old 9th September 2011
  #4
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FossilTooth's Avatar
 

There will always be a market for new designs. The population is constantly expanding, old companies constantly folding, and newer, cheaper technologies are always being developed and integrated. Even a single model of microphone, like the AKG C414 went from having 3 active stages to 17 stages within 20 years.

It's just like with songs. There will always be a market for new ones, even if the old ones are still good enough. And thank goodness for that! We're alive now, and some of us like designing new circuits and writing new songs. We'd be kinda screwed otherwise

Lastly, I'm not usually one to give business advice, but I'm going to have to disagree with my esteemed colleague Jim Williams on this one: An economic downturn is often the best time for development. Just ask Andrew Carnegie or Warren Buffett.

Carnegie dramatically increased his fortune by expanding US Steel cheaply and substantially during an economic downturn. (Of course, this requires access to capital). When the upswing finally came around (as they always do) no one could compete!

In the words of Warren himself: "Be excited when others are cautious, and cautious when others are excited". I think that sums up effective investing and development in a nutshell.
Old 9th September 2011
  #5
Lives for gear
You never know when the next Neve will stumble upon something great, so with that in mind, why stop designing?
Old 9th September 2011
  #6
Lives for gear
Outside of audio, there have been huge improvements in analog devices over the last couple of decades and people that model circuits and their interactions with mechanical devices are making steady progress in improving device performance. You can see the effect all over the scientific and IT world. I expect audio to continue feed off of that growth as well as having audio-specific circuit growth. It's not uncommon to see people here laughing about expensive cables whereas other disciplines like ion physics rely on pricey new cable and connector designs. Research programs are struggling to stay alive, so this isn't just luxury spending. That in no way says you need platinum or silver in audio cables since audio lives in a low frequency domain compared to some research instrumentation.
Old 9th September 2011
  #7
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Parsons View Post
This is about the creation of new analog audio devices...preamps, comps, eq, etc... It's beginning to seem like every possibility is already available. I just viewed an ad showing ANOTHER eq for the 500 rack and got thinking...what doesn't already exist? One of the reasons I bring this up is that I'm a student of electrical engineering and at one point had the goal of being involved with the design of analog audio gear. I just can't see that market going anywhere though.

Ideas?
time based fx for 500 series preferably analog (plate, spring, tape)
Old 9th September 2011
  #8
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Axelrod View Post
time based fx for 500 series preferably analog (plate, spring, tape)
A plate reverb that fits into a 500 slot would be great...
Mine needs a good portion of the room!
Old 9th September 2011
  #9
Gear Guru
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Axelrod View Post
time based fx for 500 series preferably analog (plate, spring, tape)
heh

I love the image!

a spring as long as a cigarette
or a plate the size of a wedding invitation

they would have decay times on the order of 2 ms
Old 9th September 2011
  #10
Jai guru deva om
 
warhead's Avatar
 

The market is getting very WIDE, making it harder for many companies to go DEEP if that makes any sense. If you have 80 guys building 500 series equalizers then each will sell a few, a couple of models will likely experience a longer / higher sales curve, and the rest will just trickle out the door and wonder why they are not getting much attention. Then there are a handful, really just a few products that come along and POW...they are a hit and they take a healthy chunk of the market.

I am a gear seller and can tell you, cutting through all the existing and new products is tougher day by day. Each small start up brand simply cannot be a stand out in their field. Still there are people making fairly minor investments in single 500 products taking chances, just not getting rich or sometimes even making a splash.

I'd be willing to bet a Jim Williams built piece of gear would have an automatic market for it and would likely sell nicely, no matter who runs the government though, as an example of an exception...

War
Old 9th September 2011
  #11
Quote:
Originally Posted by FossilTooth View Post
Lastly, I'm not usually one to give business advice, but I'm going to have to disagree with my esteemed colleague Jim Williams on this one: An economic downturn is often the best time for development. Just ask Andrew Carnegie or Warren Buffett.

Carnegie dramatically increased his fortune by expanding US Steel cheaply and substantially during an economic downturn. (Of course, this requires access to capital).
This is correct. Access to capital is what is holding many back. Banks are not lending. Self starters can proceed, but at what level of risk? Collateral must be risked at this point. Large corporations are sitting on 3 trillion dollars. They will invest it when they see a return, so far that has not happend.

In order for an increased supply, there first must be an increased demand. Buffet bought a lot of B of A stock. I'm not sure that was a wise long-term investment as that is not a well run corporation. His Berkshire-Hathaway stock values have come down quite a bit too so he's not immune either. Meanwhile, he's telling the successful to pony up more taxes while he takes every deduction he can. Hey Warren! You can pay more if you think you should. Just cut the Fed's a check. They will accept it gladly. Please don't ask me to make up the difference.

Like most, I'm sitting this out until major changes take place. I'm risk-adverse at my age. I don't have 30 years to recover any losses. When the time is right I will reveal my designs. This is not the time.
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