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bubbagump
01-17-2010, 11:49 AM
Good work from Audioholics via The Consumerist:

http://consumerist.com/2010/01/company-puts-500-blu-ray-player-in-new-case-charges-3000-markup-and-gets-caught.html

http://www.audioholics.com/reviews/transports/high-definition-dvd-players-hd-dvd-blu-ray/lexicon-bd-30-blu-ray-oppo-clone/oppo-inside-lexicon-outside-1

Great gotcha journalism from Audioholics. Maybe it will open the door to more thorough investigation from other audio reviewers. And not necessarily the blatant rip-offs. I'm also referring the the insanely subjective reviews found in magazines such as Stereophile.

kexodusc
01-17-2010, 11:57 AM
Not really all that earth shattering, but Lexicon is going to get their butts kicked in the war of public sentiment for awhile. They're hardly the only ones rebadging gear, no are they the only ones selling gear for crazy mark-ups.

I still like some of their gear though.

kexodusc
01-17-2010, 12:02 PM
Wonder if there'll be any fallout to Oppo? They could be losing a significant customer here - but then again, maybe they'll just pick up Lexicon customers at the retail rate instead of the wholesale Lexicon rate?

audio amateur
01-17-2010, 12:03 PM
How could Lexicon be so stupid as to think this wouldn't be found out (if that's what they were thinking)? Come on, the whole chassis is in there!

audio amateur
01-17-2010, 12:19 PM
I just finished reading. Pretty good article

JohnMichael
01-17-2010, 12:20 PM
Check out this link to Red Rose Music amps and notice the close resemblance to Dussun amps at a much lower retail.


http://www.redrosemusic.com/passion.shtml

Red Rose Passion
The Passion offers twice the power and even more refined sonic quality. Housed in a more traditional 19" chassis, Passion is a very elegant, simple component that makes you want to listen to music. Although compact, Passion is heavy and solidly built to last for decades of musical enjoyment. Passion features all-discrete low noise circuitry throughout, and has a headphone jack on the front panel for private listening or monitoring.

Only 4" tall and 13" deep, the Passion is a very compact 19" rack mount unit which drives virtually any quality speaker with ease. On/off, five inputs and a volume control are provided.

The Passion is extremely affordable, yet offers tremendous power reserves for driving high performance speaker systems. Sonically, the Passion is the favorite of many listeners, combining warmth and delicacy with great body, authority, speed, and clarity.

The Passion is a very elegant package that is at home in any setting. The front panel and volume control, designed by Mark Levinson, is a masterpiece of simplicity and function which is pleasing to the eye and pleasant to the touch.

The Red Rose Passion 100W integrated amplifier costs $3,000.



Now here is a picture of the Dussun DS99 that retails for around $500-$600 before the updated version came out.




http://www.goodsound.com/equipment/dussun_ds99.htm

kexodusc
01-17-2010, 12:38 PM
Check out this link to Red Rose Music amps and notice the close resemblance to Dussun amps at a much lower retail.


http://www.redrosemusic.com/passion.shtml

Red Rose Passion
The Passion offers twice the power and even more refined sonic quality. Housed in a more traditional 19" chassis, Passion is a very elegant, simple component that makes you want to listen to music. Although compact, Passion is heavy and solidly built to last for decades of musical enjoyment. Passion features all-discrete low noise circuitry throughout, and has a headphone jack on the front panel for private listening or monitoring.

Only 4" tall and 13" deep, the Passion is a very compact 19" rack mount unit which drives virtually any quality speaker with ease. On/off, five inputs and a volume control are provided.

The Passion is extremely affordable, yet offers tremendous power reserves for driving high performance speaker systems. Sonically, the Passion is the favorite of many listeners, combining warmth and delicacy with great body, authority, speed, and clarity.

The Passion is a very elegant package that is at home in any setting. The front panel and volume control, designed by Mark Levinson, is a masterpiece of simplicity and function which is pleasing to the eye and pleasant to the touch.

The Red Rose Passion 100W integrated amplifier costs $3,000.



Now here is a picture of the Dussun DS99 that retails for around $500-$600 before the updated version came out.




http://www.goodsound.com/equipment/dussun_ds99.htm

Neat. There are companies that exist as manufacturers suppliers to name brand companies. These days everyone is using someone else's components in their equipment to some extent. Most aren't quite as obvious about is as Lexicon appears to be here.

Mind you, what Lexicon has done IMO is not quite as bad as companies deliberately just changing the board layout or color, or add a few tertiary features that are largely irrelevant just to try and hide the fact it is the same piece of gear for all intents and purposes. That's blatant deception on top of gouging IMO.

This isn't unique to the a/v industry either.

blackraven
01-17-2010, 12:47 PM
This does not come as a surprise to me. For years many high end manufacturers have been pulling the wool over consumers eyes by using cheap components in their equipment and charging hundreds if not thousands more because they have the name to back it up.

Invader3k
01-17-2010, 02:07 PM
Tak about taking the concept of diminishing returns to a whole new level...

Mr Peabody
01-17-2010, 03:44 PM
I personally hope it drives Lexicon out of business and the same for any company who does this. Taking a piece and modding it to be your own offering is one thing but what Lexicon did is a crime. This type of business practice shouldn't be taken lightly by any of you. "Nail in the coffen" may be correct, people see this and it is a black eye for higher end audio. A trust has been broken. Bring on the Chinese gear. I guess it's also a real lesson for us who buy to definitely rely on ourselves as to if we hear or see any improvement. I'ts buyer beware but....... that's just extreme.

I remember back when Yamaha making Carver's tape decks and things like that went on, and you hear that manufacturers build to the brand's specs. Even if Carver had a straight yamaha with Carver's name it isn't as extreme as what Lexicon done. A $100.00 is one thing but $3k is another. Sure manufacturer's gear may share some parts when only a number of makers are available but you don't expect the end product to be the same.

Mr Peabody
01-17-2010, 03:53 PM
How would you feel if you had bought one of these? I'm not talking to the ones who did, under the Oppo badge I should say, but if you paid $3.5K. It scares me to think how mad I'd be.

IRG
01-17-2010, 04:04 PM
I think this scam should be brought to light by the mainstream audio rags. They should expose them for the frauds they are, irregardless of their advertising budgets.

I took an extended break from audiophile land, seems like deceipt and the snake oil products are still alive and well. Too bad too.

kexodusc
01-17-2010, 04:11 PM
How would you feel if you had bought one of these? I'm not talking to the ones who did, under the Oppo badge I should say, but if you paid $3.5K. It scares me to think how mad I'd be.
Yeah, the more I think of it...If I found out my Gaggia was a rebadged Hamilton Beach I'd be pretty pissed off.

I give credit to Audioholics too. It takes balls to come out and say this - they risk being cut off from samples. Not just from Lexicon and Oppo, but other companies with something to hide. It's a bit gutsy.

And THX is getting exposed a bit in this as well.

IRG
01-17-2010, 04:16 PM
Yeah I agree, kudos to Audioholics, I haven't read them before, but I will now. THey didn't try to sugar coat this at all, which gives them more credibility. I probably wouldn't have purchased a Lexicon product before, but now I never will.

Mr Peabody
01-17-2010, 04:24 PM
Is Lexicon still under the same umbrella with Levinson and all the other Harmon products?

I can't say how true this is but I don't see why this person would lie, I was speaking to a manager of a high end shop who dabbled with Levinson and decided not to go with them because they had defective products come in for eval.

Ajani
01-17-2010, 05:34 PM
Is Lexicon still under the same umbrella with Levinson and all the other Harmon products?

I can't say how true this is but I don't see why this person would lie, I was speaking to a manager of a high end shop who dabbled with Levinson and decided not to go with them because they had defective products come in for eval.

Sadly, Lexicon (and Levinson) is still part of the Harman group...

Ajani
01-17-2010, 05:40 PM
I personally hope it drives Lexicon out of business and the same for any company who does this. Taking a piece and modding it to be your own offering is one thing but what Lexicon did is a crime. This type of business practice shouldn't be taken lightly by any of you. "Nail in the coffen" may be correct, people see this and it is a black eye for higher end audio. A trust has been broken. Bring on the Chinese gear. I guess it's also a real lesson for us who buy to definitely rely on ourselves as to if we hear or see any improvement. I'ts buyer beware but....... that's just extreme.

I remember back when Yamaha making Carver's tape decks and things like that went on, and you hear that manufacturers build to the brand's specs. Even if Carver had a straight yamaha with Carver's name it isn't as extreme as what Lexicon done. A $100.00 is one thing but $3k is another. Sure manufacturer's gear may share some parts when only a number of makers are available but you don't expect the end product to be the same.

It really is a disgraceful move by Lexicon.... The standard practice in High End is to upgrade to more expensive parts (even if you use the same layout)... Whether those more expensive parts makes an improvement in performance is often up to debate... But to use the exact same parts is just a straight up scam...

If they had at least replaced all the internal wiring with Nordost Valhala (or something suitably expensive) then they would have some basis for the significant jump in price, even if Audioholics tested it and found that it gave no significant performance improvements over the standard OPPO....

Ajani
01-17-2010, 05:49 PM
Good work from Audioholics via The Consumerist:

http://consumerist.com/2010/01/company-puts-500-blu-ray-player-in-new-case-charges-3000-markup-and-gets-caught.html

http://www.audioholics.com/reviews/transports/high-definition-dvd-players-hd-dvd-blu-ray/lexicon-bd-30-blu-ray-oppo-clone/oppo-inside-lexicon-outside-1

Great gotcha journalism from Audioholics. Maybe it will open the door to more thorough investigation from other audio reviewers. And not necessarily the blatant rip-offs. I'm also referring the the insanely subjective reviews found in magazines such as Stereophile.

Good thread....

Though I think you need to keep in mind that not all review mags/sites have the technical expertise as Audioholics...

Stereophile focuses on Subjective and Measurements.... Not opening up chassis's and comparing to other brands...

And they do identify when products are poor value for money based on measurements (and subjective reviews)... For example: In this recent review of the Bel Canto USB Link:

http://www.stereophile.com/budgetcomponents/bel_canto_usb_link_2496_usb-spdif_converter/index1.html

John Atkinson makes this comparison:


Both the M-Audio and E-Mu devices provide the same basic conversion as the Bel Canto, with the added complication of the user having to install a driver program, but at significantly lower cost. When I played music CDs through them and the Benchmark DAC1, I could hear no appreciable differences among the three USB-S/PDIF converters. With the Assemblage DAC-1, the Bel Canto Link gave a sound that was cleaner than the E-Mu's but, to my surprise, was not appreciably different from the cheap M-Audio's, even with high-sample-rate files.

And concludes with this:


Provided it is used with a D/A processor that offers effective jitter rejection, the USB Link 24/96 does what Bel Canto promises it will do, and can be recommended. However, I can't pretend that the $495 USB Link doesn't come under strong competition from M-Audio's $100 Transit USB. Both handle sample rates up to 96kHz, and for a Mac user like me, the potential advantage of the Bel Canto of not having to manually set playback sample rate with Windows is moot. But with its aluminum enclosure, the made-in-America Bel Canto does feel like a high-end product; with the Chinese-made M-Audio, plastic is as plastic does.

RGA
01-17-2010, 06:08 PM
Unfortunately this action hurts the entire high end industry where most companies do in fact build or create or original products, or heavily modify parts. We know that there are very few companies making cd readers, transports etc but usually companies will modify them rather heavily. And they will sound and measure differently. For instance Sim Audio, Bryston BCD-1 and Audio Note's one box player all use the same Philips L1210 transport mechanism but then all three tell you that. Moreover, none of them sound the alike and under the chassis - you can see that all three have considerably different parts and layouts. It doesn't make sense to re-invent the wheel. Lexicon is a whole other matter.

Plenty of companies though have rebadged Chinese gear from Shengya, Jungson etc under their own label - Vincent for example. But at least Vincent's prices are pretty much the same as the Chinese named counterparts and there isn't a direct model to compete with. And they don't hide from the fact.

I had a Pioneer laserdisc player - they rebadged the identical player and put a piano black glossy front on it and rosewood side panels under the "Elite" name badge. My machine was $650 - the Elite was $1200. There was a Hitachi that was the exact same machine in gray instead of black for $500 or something. The machine was exactly the same. Pioneer also rebranded their receivers under the "Sears" logo for a long time - oddly the Sears branded models cost more.

Ajani
01-17-2010, 07:24 PM
Looks like we'll get an additional opinion on this, from Stereophile in the March issue:

http://forum.stereophile.com/forum/showflat.php?Cat=0&Board=TheOpenBar&Number=80773

http://forum.stereophile.com/forum/showflat.php?Cat=0&Number=80790&an=0&page=0&gonew=1#UNREAD

harley .guy07
01-17-2010, 07:41 PM
This does not surprise me either that some of these "high end" companies are doing this kind of crap. That is why when I make purchases of higher end gear I do a bunch of research before I spend my money because crooks out there like lexicon are trying to sell you a Civic for the price of a Lexus. Nothing wrong with a civic they are great cars but paying 5 times the price for it is damn ridiculous and any car company doing it would be called crooks and they would probably be shut down for it but these high end companies are getting away with it like its a normal every day practice and is ok to do. ITS NOT OK and it pisses me off to be honest and makes me even more gun shy at buying higher end components. I know there is great stuff out there and companies that make high end components worth the money but this kind of crap is not going to set well with people especially ones that are just starting to get into this hobby as it will scare them off of going into the higher end stuff. This kind of stuff just makes me sick and I dought I will ever take Lexicon seriously ever again.

Ajani
01-17-2010, 07:48 PM
This does not surprise me either that some of these "high end" companies are doing this kind of crap. That is why when I make purchases of higher end gear I do a bunch of research before I spend my money because crooks out there like lexicon are trying to sell you a Civic for the price of a Lexus. Nothing wrong with a civic they are great cars but paying 5 times the price for it is damn ridiculous and any car company doing it would be called crooks and they would probably be shut down for it but these high end companies are getting away with it like its a normal every day practice and is ok to do. ITS NOT OK and it pisses me off to be honest and makes me even more gun shy at buying higher end components. I know there is great stuff out there and companies that make high end components worth the money but this kind of crap is not going to set well with people especially ones that are just starting to get into this hobby as it will scare them off of going into the higher end stuff. This kind of stuff just makes me sick and I dought I will ever take Lexicon seriously ever again.

Yep, that's the exact problem... it only serves to make high end into more of a joke to the masses...

Nothing wrong with Lexicon using the basics from OPPO (just about all tech companies buy over the counter parts), but some SUBSTANTIAL amount of tweaking and new parts is expected to justify the price difference...

The other option was for them to charge just a little more (for the prettier Lexicon chassis) and just make it clear that it is an OPPO designed to match other Lexicon components (for Lexicon owners who want a Blu-Ray Player that matches the aesthetics of their gear)...

But $3.5K for a $0.5K product is a scam....

thekid
01-17-2010, 08:14 PM
Is this really a surprise?
Almost every product has some sort of this rebadging or marketing scam (too harsh a word??) similar to what happened here.

My sister-in-law who works as a consultant to "high-end" cosmetic businesses told me a little marketing story. A company produces a jar of cold cream that costs them about $30 to produce and its quality is top notch but it is in the end only cold cream and the difference between it and some of its lower cost competitors is minimal.

Now this company could put a $45-$60 price tag on it sell it everywhere and make alot of money. However this company makes alot of cosmetic products and is known as a "high-end" company that sells its products in only the most exclusive stores in the world. If they sold their product at a lower price regular retailers would pick it up and the company's reputation would actual suffer despite the quality of its product. So what does the company do? They price the $30 jar of cold cream at around $700 sell it in only "high-end" stores where their customers now routinely fork over their money solely based on the reputation of the company.

My point is not that just because you pay alot for something that you are getting ripped off. My point is that you need to become educated enough in your purchases to know if the money spent is really going into the quality of the product or only in the name/marketing of the product. Unfortunately it sounds easier than it is.

Ajani
01-17-2010, 08:35 PM
Is this really a surprise?
Almost every product has some sort of this rebadging or marketing scam (too harsh a word??) similar to what happened here.

My sister-in-law who works as a consultant to "high-end" cosmetic businesses told me a little marketing story. A company produces a jar of cold cream that costs them about $30 to produce and its quality is top notch but it is in the end only cold cream and the difference between it and some of its lower cost competitors is minimal.

Now this company could put a $45-$60 price tag on it sell it everywhere and make alot of money. However this company makes alot of cosmetic products and is known as a "high-end" company that sells its products in only the most exclusive stores in the world. If they sold their product at a lower price regular retailers would pick it up and the company's reputation would actual suffer despite the quality of its product. So what does the company do? They price the $30 jar of cold cream at around $700 sell it in only "high-end" stores where their customers now routinely fork over their money solely based on the reputation of the company.

My point is not that just because you pay alot for something that you are getting ripped off. My point is that you need to become educated enough in your purchases to know if the money spent is really going into the quality of the product or only in the name/marketing of the product. Unfortunately it sounds easier than it is.

Agreed... that has always been the case with clothes and cosmetics... The same factory, in some poor country, that produces expensive name brand clothes will also produce 'no-name' clothes (that are exactly the same clothes without the tag, but sell for a fraction of the price)...

But I think the real shock here is because Lexicon is a well established brand and part of a major group... so it really has no excuse for this... Some startup "High-End" brand would be expected to be involved in this type of scandal.....

3LB
01-18-2010, 12:50 AM
The clothing industry is the same way. Same with shoes. I worked in a clothing factory when I was 18 (before it moved overseas) and after a large production run for a major label the overrun stuff would get the discount labels, for significantly cheaper.

I've known that a lot of "high-end" electronics were like this and its not a recent developement either. And I'll bet that its not just the high-end brands that wished this info never saw the light of day. I'm so glad I don't have to grip over this.

Its enough to make one rethink those magnetic bracelets too.

Feanor
01-18-2010, 03:47 AM
Another angle on this issue ... I recently heard Conrad Johnson criticized for have a short product range: scarcely a dozen products and all amps and preamps. Another example is Pass Labs. There is no doubt these company make product that is great and entirely their own. What's my point?

I get suspicious when I see a company making a "full range" or products: amps, players, DACs, speakers, phono equipment, speakers. Can a small or medium-sized company be good at all these things? Can they do the research and product development for all these things? Likely not. Almost inevidably they have to buy not just technology but actual product for other companies. And if they have a "high-end" image and, more particularly, a high-end distribution channel, they have to have high markup to make their profits. So now we're talking about the likes of Lexicon; (the fact that they might be owned by Harmon International doesn't make them a big company).

The more integrated a technology, the more suspicious I get about the value for high-price product. E.g. DACs >$1500 that use only off-the-shelf Texas Instruments LSI chips, (or Wolfson for that matter). Using these chips, DAC design and construction is relatively simple, and even with high quality peripheral components, it only costs so much to built a unit apart from milled face plates and such cosmetic extras. (DACs like those from dCS and EMM Labs are rather different because they use a lot of discrete components.)

Ajani
01-18-2010, 06:30 AM
Another angle on this issue ... I recently heard Conrad Johnson criticized for have a short product range: scarcely a dozen products and all amps and preamps. Another example is Pass Labs. There is no doubt these company make product that is great and entirely their own. What's my point?

I get suspicious when I see a company making a "full range" or products: amps, players, DACs, speakers, phono equipment, speakers. Can a small or medium-sized company be good at all these things? Can they do the research and product development for all these things? Likely not. Almost inevidably they have to buy not just technology but actual product for other companies. And if they have a "high-end" image and, more particularly, a high-end distribution channel, they have to have high markup to make their profits. So now we're talking about the likes of Lexicon; (the fact that they might be owned by Harmon International doesn't make them a big company).

The more integrated a technology, the more suspicious I get about the value for high-price product. E.g. DACs >$1500 that use only off-the-shelf Texas Instruments LSI chips, (or Wolfson for that matter). Using these chips, DAC design and construction is relatively simple, and even with high quality peripheral components, it only costs so much to built a unit apart from milled face plates and such cosmetic extras. (DACs like those from dCS and EMM Labs are rather different because they use a lot of discrete components.)

I see what you're saying but I don't think it really applies to Lexicon... They only make Preamplifiers/Processors, Power Amps, Receivers (combination of the first two) and Disc Players.... So not a very wide range of products.... So even we ignore their membership in the Harman Group and just regard them as a small company, they don't have a wide enough product range to make them 'suspicious'...

Worse yet, considering how well established Lexicon is in high end (and Pro Audio) most persons would have trusted them to produce a good product...

Mr Peabody
01-18-2010, 07:01 AM
I was emailing with a guy I know in the business and regarding what Feanor was saying Classe' will not be coming out with a Blu ray player because they cannot do it themselves and something with an issue integrating of their LCD touch screens. He also said that Harmon is not in good financial condition and there are products not that old in some of their lines, Levinson was particularly mentioned, that Harmon will not repair. There are a couple service shops they refer people to but if they aren't able to help some one could end up with an expensive door stop.

Feanor
01-18-2010, 07:11 AM
I see what you're saying but I don't think it really applies to Lexicon... They only make Preamplifiers/Processors, Power Amps, Receivers (combination of the first two) and Disc Players.... So not a very wide range of products.... So even we ignore their membership in the Harman Group and just regard them as a small company, they don't have a wide enough product range to make them 'suspicious'...

Worse yet, considering how well established Lexicon is in high end (and Pro Audio) most persons would have trusted them to produce a good product...
We might debate the relative position of Lexicon in the small/specialized to large/wide-range continum. But it seems clear that they are guilty of "rounding out" their range despite that the component isn't one they developed or make.

Lexicon is, from an image and marketing persepective, a (relatively) high-end provider. A typical high-ends strategy is high markup to compensate for lessor sales volume and an expensive distribution channel. (Bear in mind that Oppo sells direct for its MSRP; Lexicon sells through dealers who may allow heavy discounts.) The high-end marque is after a high markup regardless of where they source their product.

When are people going to understand that there is a very loose connection MSRP price on the one hand, and either basic cost of manufacture and/or quality on the other??

But of course I have a lot more respect for Outlaw Audio for offering the Onkyo prepro unit undisguised while they complete the process of developing their own prepro -- which has been a long time coming by now.

Ajani
01-18-2010, 07:34 AM
I was emailing with a guy I know in the business and regarding what Feanor was saying Classe' will not be coming out with a Blu ray player because they cannot do it themselves and something with an issue integrating of their LCD touch screens. He also said that Harmon is not in good financial condition and there are products not that old in some of their lines, Levinson was particularly mentioned, that Harmon will not repair. There are a couple service shops they refer people to but if they aren't able to help some one could end up with an expensive door stop.

Classe has class :biggrin5:

They understand that if they can't do it right themselves, then there's no point in embarrassing themselves with either a sub-standard product or a scam like Lexicon...

As for the Harman group not being in good financial condition, that really is sad... I'm a big fan of their Revel and AKG lines... So I'd hate to see either of those 2 go down with the ship (if the ship goes down)...

Mr Peabody
01-18-2010, 07:41 AM
Excellent point, and I had forgotten about the Outlaw issue. In light of things it would seem Outlaw made the right decision and good for them for not rebadging. I wonder though if they did put the Onkyo in an Outlaw case how much cheaper it may have been.

I think most realize there is more mark up on high end audio as there is on any high end product but as some one mentioned you don't expect a Civic when paying for an Accura. Either way it certainly seems to validate the approach of companies like Oppo and Emotiva. I don't see Oppo as the bad guy in this scenario either, they didn't make Lexicon do what they did. I suspect Oppo owners are probably feeling quite justified after hearing this story.

Mr Peabody
01-18-2010, 07:46 AM
I didn't realize AKG was under Harmon. You know I bought a pair of their earbuds and thought for the money they were good, I recommended them to a poster and went back to see which model I bought and the current reviews of newer models are not so good.

kexodusc
01-18-2010, 07:47 AM
Classe has class :biggrin5:

They understand that if they can't do it right themselves, then there's no point in embarrassing themselves with either a sub-standard product or a scam like Lexicon...

As for the Harman group not being in good financial condition, that really is sad... I'm a big fan of their Revel and AKG lines... So I'd hate to see either of those 2 go down with the ship (if the ship goes down)...
There would be a lot of people lined up to buy Harman assets and continue several brands if it came that, I think. The worry would be whether some holding company bought Revel and started cranking out crap speakers at high prices. I don't think that would happen - some of those brands would have decent business models and could probably do ok with clean balance sheets and tweaking.

Ajani
01-18-2010, 07:51 AM
Check out this link to Red Rose Music amps and notice the close resemblance to Dussun amps at a much lower retail.


http://www.redrosemusic.com/passion.shtml

Red Rose Passion
The Passion offers twice the power and even more refined sonic quality. Housed in a more traditional 19" chassis, Passion is a very elegant, simple component that makes you want to listen to music. Although compact, Passion is heavy and solidly built to last for decades of musical enjoyment. Passion features all-discrete low noise circuitry throughout, and has a headphone jack on the front panel for private listening or monitoring.

Only 4" tall and 13" deep, the Passion is a very compact 19" rack mount unit which drives virtually any quality speaker with ease. On/off, five inputs and a volume control are provided.

The Passion is extremely affordable, yet offers tremendous power reserves for driving high performance speaker systems. Sonically, the Passion is the favorite of many listeners, combining warmth and delicacy with great body, authority, speed, and clarity.

The Passion is a very elegant package that is at home in any setting. The front panel and volume control, designed by Mark Levinson, is a masterpiece of simplicity and function which is pleasing to the eye and pleasant to the touch.

The Red Rose Passion 100W integrated amplifier costs $3,000.



Now here is a picture of the Dussun DS99 that retails for around $500-$600 before the updated version came out.




http://www.goodsound.com/equipment/dussun_ds99.htm

JM, I think you're being totally unfair to Red Rose... On their website (the link you provided) they make it clear why the Red Rose costs so much (more than the Dussun):


The front panel and volume control, designed by Mark Levinson, is a masterpiece of simplicity and function which is pleasing to the eye and pleasant to the touch.

Who wouldn't want to pay 5 - 6 times the price, to have Mark Levinson design a sexy new faceplate for the product???

Ajani
01-18-2010, 08:19 AM
Excellent point, and I had forgotten about the Outlaw issue. In light of things it would seem Outlaw made the right decision and good for them for not rebadging. I wonder though if they did put the Onkyo in an Outlaw case how much cheaper it may have been.

Outlaw clearly did the right thing... So did PS Audio (in a way)... since up until they release their own Perfect Wave music server, they've been pushing the AppleTV as the device to use... They could have just slapped on a PS Audio Faceplate on a AppleTV and charged $1K for it as part of the Trio Line....


I think most realize there is more mark up on high end audio as there is on any high end product but as some one mentioned you don't expect a Civic when paying for an Accura.

Most likely the smaller Acura will be based on the Civic Chassis... But the upgrades will be substantial (better engine, transmission, just about everything)... So there will be no disputing that it is a different and more expensive vehicle... However the markup will be higher and whether those upgrades are worth it is up the consumer to determine...

In Speakers, many times a manufacturer's entry level product will have the same basic design as their top of the line. Compare the Revel Concerta F12 with the Revel Ultima Studio 2:

http://www.revelspeakers.com/products/product.asp?product=19

http://www.revelspeakers.com/products/product.asp?product=28

Both have the same layout and complement of drivers:


A three-way system utilizing two 8-inch woofers, a 5-inch midrange and a 1-inch tweeter

But the specs on the Studio 2 are substantially better is as the build quality (and presumably there are substantial changes internally)... Now whether the improvement in sound justifies the difference in price ($1.5K versus $16K) is up the consumer...


Either way it certainly seems to validate the approach of companies like Oppo and Emotiva. I don't see Oppo as the bad guy in this scenario either, they didn't make Lexicon do what they did. I suspect Oppo owners are probably feeling quite justified after hearing this story.

As far as I can tell, Oppo did nothing wrong... There is no reason to assume that Oppo knew that Lexicon would just repackage their product (rather than upgrading it as is the standard practice)... Unless Oppo was also hired as a design consultant for the Lexicon model...

Sir Terrence the Terrible
01-18-2010, 08:40 AM
I've been onto this practice for years with pro mixing equipment. But this is another reason why I won't buy "high end" stuff even though I can easily afford it. I have for years purchased well made stuff, and then had it upgraded to my specifications for mixing and listening. I have never trusted that the big price tags always lead to great sound. As a matter of fact, I have found in some cases it produced a poor product.

THX is a joke, and has been a joke for years. I was surprised that Lexicon got busted with this, but THX has a history of certifying stuff that would not meet their supposedly "secret" standard (it's not a secret to those of us who have been THX certified). Their have been several receivers that have been certified that did not meet their criteria. I am reminded of a THX certified Kenwood receiver that had a power supply that was so small that it would have never been able to meet THX specifications for a 3000 cubic foot room, no way! I know for a fact that THX stopped actually certifying theaters personally (they used to inspect all theaters in person), but allow the theater chain to pay $10,000 per year, per screen for the certification badge even if the theater is not up to snuff. Most theaters now don't even bother with the certification because their own technicians can do the work that THX used to do. THX has pretty much given up the theatrical area, and is focusing now on D-cinema, and digital projectors and video equipment for home consumers. I think the wheel fell off the THX wagon when they decided they were going to certify VHS players back in the 90's, and computer speakers in the late 90's. When you have to dig that low to generate revenue, your certification is basically worthless.

I always laugh when one of our more "uppidity" members here make a comment that my amps are just mid priced Japanese gear. On my signature it may appear to be just that, but when you look under the hood, a different story is told.

You can never judge a book by its cover(or name), and this is a prime example of that.

Oppo should be proud that they produced a Blu ray player so good that Lexicon simply put a new case on it, and charges $2500 more for it. Or should they?

Mr Peabody
01-18-2010, 09:58 AM
With the appearance of the 83se and NuForce additions it's apparent that there was places for improvements to be made. Lexicon didn't even try.

Sir Terrence the Terrible
01-18-2010, 10:10 AM
With the appearance of the 83se and NuForce additions it's apparent that there was places for improvements to be made. Lexicon didn't even try.

In order to throw all of the great video bells and whistles, and with the knowledge that quite a few of its owner would be going the HDMI route, the analog audio stages (while still good) had to take a hit. The SE and NuForce additions take care of that issue. If Lexicon was smart(er), they would have taken the Oppo with the NuForce additions and rebadged it. At least that would have looked like they were making some improvements. In this case Lexicon AND THX take the hit, and Oppo comes out smelling like a rose. As good as the Oppo is, THX should not have certified it, because it does not meet their specs. I am not referring to the build or quality of the player, I am referring to their particular specs on pre-pros and receivers where the bass management has to crossover at 80hz, with a particular LP and HP slopes designed specifically for their THX approved speakers.

harley .guy07
01-18-2010, 10:51 AM
I've been onto this practice for years with pro mixing equipment. But this is another reason why I won't buy "high end" stuff even though I can easily afford it. I have for years purchased well made stuff, and then had it upgraded to my specifications for mixing and listening. I have never trusted that the big price tags always lead to great sound. As a matter of fact, I have found in some cases it produced a poor product.

I have as well seen several times that my good mid prices gear outperforms some of the multi thousand dollar gear some of my friends have or I have worked with in the past. I believe there are components out there that do have a higher price tag because they have the best parts available and they do outperform all mid priced stuff but that is only in certain cases and I have seen this go completely the opposite direction many times. It's funny to watch this take place and I always root for the underdog since I am a person that believes in more for the money. I put in mind the Odyssey Audio Khardago amplifier, this amp is a killer amp and I have heard it several times over the years and the damn thing to me has sounded better than so many amps in the multi thousand dollar range that it is kind of unbelievable. But Odyssey audio sells it for 750 bucks in stock form and just right under 1000 bucks for the modified version and this thing will make speakers sing like some amps with 10,000 dollar price tags on them. In fact when I do upgrade from my Adcom I will be looking very close at the Khardago. At least the Khardago has a price tag that is affordable and real world and I believe that is one thing that is going to help keep this hobby alive for people just getting into it because the economy is not that great in today's world and I don't think its over yet.

Ajani
01-18-2010, 12:20 PM
I have as well seen several times that my good mid prices gear outperforms some of the multi thousand dollar gear some of my friends have or I have worked with in the past. I believe there are components out there that do have a higher price tag because they have the best parts available and they do outperform all mid priced stuff but that is only in certain cases and I have seen this go completely the opposite direction many times. It's funny to watch this take place and I always root for the underdog since I am a person that believes in more for the money. I put in mind the Odyssey Audio Khardago amplifier, this amp is a killer amp and I have heard it several times over the years and the damn thing to me has sounded better than so many amps in the multi thousand dollar range that it is kind of unbelievable. But Odyssey audio sells it for 750 bucks in stock form and just right under 1000 bucks for the modified version and this thing will make speakers sing like some amps with 10,000 dollar price tags on them. In fact when I do upgrade from my Adcom I will be looking very close at the Khardago. At least the Khardago has a price tag that is affordable and real world and I believe that is one thing that is going to help keep this hobby alive for people just getting into it because the economy is not that great in today's world and I don't think its over yet.

The Khartago is on my list of potential amps as well... It's pretty much either that or the Naim Nait 5i... both have strong reputations as exceptionally good despite the relatively low prices...

The trick for the budget conscious audiophile is to read as many reviews (and measurements) as possible and then audition keenly... there are so many great products available for reasonable money, that you can easily assemble something that sounds genuinely high-end, just without the high-end price tag... NOTE: that does not mean that there are not still better products available for a lot more money...

Experts like Sir T, can buy good affordable gear and have them altered to spec (which is one of the best ways to ensure you don't get ripped off)... Since I have no such expertise, I instead check out numerous professional and user reviews and keenly audition to get the best value for my money... I also have a policy that gear has to both sound good to me and measure well....

The reason measurement matters to me is because I want to be sure that I'm getting a real improvement for my money and not just a different sound (for an elevated price tag)... For example, some persons might audition a $1K Benchmark DAC1 and decide that they prefer the sound of some high-end company's $3K DAC... However, how do they know that the $3K DAC is really better and not just that it provides a sound they prefer? Further, how do they know that there is not another $1K DAC that measures and sounds like the $3K one?

pixelthis
01-18-2010, 03:45 PM
badge engineering, what I have been talking about on this site for years.

ALTHOUGH one of the worst examples I have seem.
Isnt putting a Sony drive in a 2000$ CD player about as bad?:1:

Ajani
01-18-2010, 04:00 PM
badge engineering, what I have been talking about on this site for years.

ALTHOUGH one of the worst examples I have seem.
Isnt putting a Sony drive in a 2000$ CD player about as bad?:1:

Depends on what components they use around the drive.... If the drive is just used for extracting digital info and then all the analog work is done by 'audiophile' parts then it can be OK...

Computer Audio has shown that you can use a cheap consumer device (Squeezebox, AppeTV or even iPod for example) as transports for exceptionally expensive and High Quality Stereo Systems...

Not every single component needs to be high end... Just the ones handling conversion to analog and analog outputs....

E-Stat
01-18-2010, 04:06 PM
I always laugh when one of our more "uppidity" members here make a comment that my amps are just mid priced Japanese gear. On my signature it may appear to be just that, but when you look under the hood, a different story is told.
Do you honestly think that Jon Curl thinks his mods to your amps are equivalent to his JC-1 design? C'mon! I'm convinced he could find multiple ways to improve upon any Onkyo implementation in terms of component quality and power supply effectiveness. What he cannot fix is the inherent topology. As good as the JC-1s are (I've heard them at length, have you?), far better exists (at least for musical content). They do quite well, however, at their price point given the Chinese assembly.

rw

Ajani
01-18-2010, 04:24 PM
Do you honestly think that Jon Curl thinks his mods to your amps are equivalent to his JC-1 design? C'mon! I'm convinced he could find multiple ways to improve upon the Onkyo implementation in terms of component quality and power supply effectiveness. What he cannot fix is the inherent topology. As good as the JC-1s are (I've heard them at length, have you?), far better exists (at least for musical content). They do quite well, however, at their price point given the Chinese assembly.

rw

:eek:

I think I'm going to need some popcorn to fully enjoy this one....

E-Stat
01-18-2010, 04:27 PM
I am referring to their particular specs on pre-pros and receivers where the bass management has to crossover at 80hz, with a particular LP and HP slopes designed specifically for their THX approved speakers.
I would sincerely hope these "THX approved" speakers also break with the bass management convention because I seriously doubt the 2.5" *mains* have any clue whatsoever as to what 80 hz means!

High End THX (http://www.logitech.com/index.cfm/speakers_audio/home_pc_speakers/devices/231&cl=ca,en)

rw

Feanor
01-18-2010, 04:31 PM
... As good as the JC-1s are (I've heard them at length, have you?), far better exists (at least for musical content). They do quite well, however, at their price point given the Chinese assembly.

rw
I don't know about the JC-1 in particular, but I think it's important not to developed a prejudiced attitude towards assembly in China. The fact is that assembly there will be exactly as good as the maker wants it to be. That is, given adequate supervison and QA, quality can be as good as anywhere.

Or maybe better when you think of it: lower wages costs can go towards more careful, deliberate work.

E-Stat
01-18-2010, 04:58 PM
I don't know about the JC-1 in particular, but I think it's important not to developed a prejudiced attitude towards assembly in China.
Chinese assembly simply assures lower cost. Both the JC-1 amp and the (new) JC-2 preamp offer great performance for the buck. I have been a fan of Jon Curl's designs since I first heard the Mark Levinson JC-2 back in '75.

The JC-1 amp is a fine design that runs class A for a pretty good part of its range. I heard them driving Sound Lab Majestics. In fact, Dr. West uses JC-1s himself! They sound great until you compare them to something like VTL Siegfrieds or ARC 600Ts

rw

thekid
01-18-2010, 05:23 PM
But I think the real shock here is because Lexicon is a well established brand and part of a major group... so it really has no excuse for this... Some startup "High-End" brand would be expected to be involved in this type of scandal.....

I think the opposite is true. The new kid on the block has not built up a reputation and will almost invite scrutiny based on its price. I think the established companies are more likely to this route because of their perceived reputation for quality.

I think Feanor also makes the point that a company that has good reputation and offers a large array of products might be prone to give in to temptation because they might have limited resources to devote to certain products.

Ajani
01-18-2010, 05:54 PM
I think the opposite is true. The new kid on the block has not built up a reputation and will almost invite scrutiny based on its price. I think the established companies are more likely to this route because of their perceived reputation for quality.

I think Feanor also makes the point that a company that has good reputation and offers a large array of products might be prone to give in to temptation because they might have limited resources to devote to certain products.

The problem with that is that it assumes that a brand that has been operating 'honestly' for years or even decades, is suddenly going to do something fraudulent... I more expect a new company to be run by crooks from the get go, than an established one to suddenly change direction...

Lexicon didn't need to do this... despite any talk about pressures, they could have just opted to not build a Blu-Ray Player and stick to Amplification....

Just as I wouldn't expect an employee who's been with a company for decades to suddenly start stealing... I'd be more suspicious of the new employees...

Ajani
01-18-2010, 06:09 PM
Home Theater Review has also been getting a lot of heat for their recent gushing review of the Lexicon... Especially since the reviewer bought an Oppo BD-83 SE to compare the two and prove that the Lexicon wasn't just a rebadged Oppo:

http://hometheaterreview.com/lexicon-bd-30-universal-blu-ray-player-reviewed/


I am sure people will attack this player as a "rebadged" Oppo, so I went out and bought an Oppo BD-83 SE in order to fairly compare the two. First off, there is no comparison between the build quality of the two players. The Oppo is lighter and the buttons have a far less solid feel to them. The Lexicon is a taller, much heftier unit. Black levels were close, but the Lexicon had a more natural contrast and color palette than the Oppo. More importantly, the Lexicon was nearly totally silent when loading discs and changing tracks. Those familiar with the Oppo know it is a rather noisy player when loading discs, switching tracks and scanning, even sometimes for no apparent reason. The drive is in the Oppo is noisy enough to catch my attention during quiet passages in movies, while the Lexicon is inaudible during use at all times.

And of course the Lexicon story is spreading across Hi-Fi Sites:

http://www.avrev.com/home-theater-news/blu-ray-hardware-news/lexicon-facing-dissent-over-their-bd-30-release.html

Though I rarely diss review sites/mags... I have to admit that I was never a fan of HTR, as I found some of their reviews to be utter crap... I'd see a review of an integrated amp with no mention of how it sounds, but a recommendation to buy it at the end of the review... I can accept a short review, but I still want some details on sound and what you compared it to... not just a listing of the products features like a cheap brochure...

Sir Terrence the Terrible
01-18-2010, 06:13 PM
Do you honestly think that Jon Curl thinks his mods to your amps are equivalent to his JC-1 design? C'mon! I'm convinced he could find multiple ways to improve upon any Onkyo implementation in terms of component quality and power supply effectiveness. What he cannot fix is the inherent topology. As good as the JC-1s are (I've heard them at length, have you?), far better exists (at least for musical content). They do quite well, however, at their price point given the Chinese assembly.

rw

When you read a statement, try reading that statement exactly for what it states. In the future, avoid putting things in that statement that the statement didn't exactly state.

Thanks!

Sir Terrence the Terrible
01-18-2010, 06:22 PM
I would sincerely hope these "THX approved" speakers also break with the bass management convention because I seriously doubt the 2.5" *mains* have any clue whatsoever as to what 80 hz means!

High End THX (http://www.logitech.com/index.cfm/speakers_audio/home_pc_speakers/devices/231&cl=ca,en)

rw

The 80hz standard does not apply to PC speakers, it only applies to it home THX speakers. Their PC certification has a much higher crossover point to ensure that the speakers can playback X level at the ears from X position away.

There are different standards for certifying different kinds of components.

Ajani
01-18-2010, 06:24 PM
The 80hz standard does not apply to PC speakers, it only applies to it home THX speakers. Their PC certification has a much higher crossover point to ensure that the speakers can playback X level at the ears from X position away.

There are different standards for certifying different kinds of components.

Why does a PC speaker need to be certified?

E-Stat
01-18-2010, 06:30 PM
When you read a statement, try reading that statement exactly for what it states. In the future, avoid putting things in that statement that the statement didn't exactly state.
Ok. Do you really think that modified mid-fi is equivalent to purpose built gear designed to a far higher level? Apparently, you are not aware of what Mr. Curl can do with a clean sheet of paper.

rw

E-Stat
01-18-2010, 06:38 PM
There are different standards for certifying different kinds of components.
More fodder for your comment that THX certification is a joke. It is a standard that has nothing remotely to do with performance. :)

rw

harley .guy07
01-18-2010, 08:18 PM
I think I will get me a beer and pop me some popcorn too. But I can see you guys points on both sides. If people have the ability to modify mid fi gear and get high end performance out of it and be satisfied then great. But for a good audio designer to design something form scratch to be no holds barred performance would be at a different level too. But other than that I will drink my beverage and let you gentlemen argue this one out.

Sir Terrence the Terrible
01-19-2010, 09:36 AM
Why does a PC speaker need to be certified?

It doesn't, that is why it is a joke to do so.

Sir Terrence the Terrible
01-19-2010, 09:38 AM
Ok. Do you really think that modified mid-fi is equivalent to purpose built gear designed to a far higher level? Apparently, you are not aware of what Mr. Curl can do with a clean sheet of paper.

rw

The word assumption does begin with the word a$$. I am very aware of what Mr. Curl can do, that is why I asked him to do the modification. Do you have any more ASSumptions to add to this thread?

Amps are things you have to actually listen to before comment. Horse before buggy. Making comments about something you never heard is silly and illogical. Cart before horse. Taking more from a statement than was actually said, cart with no wheels and no horse.

E-Stat
01-19-2010, 10:19 AM
I am very aware of what Mr. Curl can do, that is why I asked him to do the modification.
Most folks would simply have said, "yes, I've heard the JC-1 amplifiers in my system". Is that a true statement - yes? no? Do you remember?


Making comments about something you never heard is silly and illogical.
I'll ask the question again so perhaps you might respond. Do you really think that Jon Curl thinks his mods to Onkyo amps sound as good as his JC-1 design? He posts over at AA, so perhaps I'll ask him directly. :)

rw

Sir Terrence the Terrible
01-19-2010, 10:41 AM
Most folks would simply have said, "yes, I've heard the JC-1 amplifiers in my system". Is that a true statement - yes? no? Do you remember?

You don't know most folks, and most folks do not have answers that conform to what you believe they should be. I do not think that was the point of my comments in the first place. Interpret only what is written, it is safe that way.



I'll ask the question again so perhaps you might respond. Do you really think that Jon Curl thinks his mods to Onkyo amps sound as good as his JC-1 design? He posts over at AA, so perhaps I'll ask him directly. :)

rw

I do not know what John Curl thinks, I am not John Curl am I? If you have to ask him directly, do so. I am the wrong person to poise that question to.

E-Stat
01-19-2010, 10:47 AM
You don't know most folks, and most folks do not have answers that conform to what you believe they should be.
Sorry that my trick question "have you ever heard JC-1s in your system" baffled you.

rw

rob_a
01-19-2010, 01:04 PM
I know an insider at the Harmon corp., and from what I have heard, their behind the bubble when it comes to new technology. By the time they develop new products, their already outdated, so in order to keep up they are using what’s on the market already. I was also told that their audiophile products were “crap!” and they were probably going to lose their base costumers. just some things I heard.

nightflier
01-19-2010, 01:57 PM
Fascinating read. Ahem, forgive me for asking the obvious, but has Lexicon responded?

Ajani
01-19-2010, 02:11 PM
Fascinating read. Ahem, forgive me for asking the obvious, but has Lexicon responded?

Yes... they stick by their claims that they have made improvements over the Oppo, but haven't stated what those improvements are.... (I believe that response is on the Audioholics' website)...

GMichael
01-19-2010, 02:36 PM
I wonder how many people have laughed and then said, "You don't really believe that your $500 player can actually be as good as my $3000 player do you?"

IRG
01-19-2010, 04:34 PM
Yes... they stick by their claims that they have made improvements over the Oppo, but haven't stated what those improvements are.... (I believe that response is on the Audioholics' website)...

One would think, that if the article published wasn't true, Harmon would sue for slander, etc. The fact that they haven't, speaks volumes. They're probably hoping it will blow over, which it will, eventually. Kinda reminds me of baseball's steroids controversey, everyone knows the players involved are lying, and it becomes kind of a joke after a while. Better to fess up, and move along.

E-Stat
01-19-2010, 04:40 PM
I wonder how many people have laughed and then said, "You don't really believe that your $500 player can actually be as good as my $3000 player do you?"
I find it amazing that apparently they only did badge engineering. I'm aware of a number of players that used the transport from a cheaper donor, but incorporated their own discrete output stage (which is where the basic Oppo needs help). For those who output the digital stream to an external processor, even that would be superfluous.

rw

GMichael
01-20-2010, 08:19 AM
I find it amazing that apparently they only did badge engineering. I'm aware of a number of players that used the transport from a cheaper donor, but incorporated their own discrete output stage (which is where the basic Oppo needs help). For those who output the digital stream to an external processor, even that would be superfluous.

rw

I work in the laptop and printer parts business. We often see parts and even large assemblies from one manufacture being used in another's unit, but I don't ever remember anyone completely "re-badging" another's printer in whole.

audio amateur
01-20-2010, 08:29 AM
I work in the laptop and printer parts business. We often see parts and even large assemblies from one manufacture being used in another's unit, but I don't ever remember anyone completely "re-badging" another's printer in whole.
Does that mean if I need a part for my 5 year old Dell you can be my hookup? :D

GMichael
01-20-2010, 08:35 AM
Does that mean if I need a part for my 5 year old Dell you can be my hookup? :D

I can find Dell parts, but we don't get any discounts on them. We'd end up marking the price up. You're better off going on Google yourself. Ebay is another good source. If you need Toshiba laptop or projector parts I can hook you up for sure.

audio amateur
01-20-2010, 08:56 AM
I can find Dell parts, but we don't get any discounts on them. We'd end up marking the price up. You're better off going on Google yourself. Ebay is another good source. If you need Toshiba laptop or projector parts I can hook you up for sure.
Is that toshiba projectors or any projector? Tanx

GMichael
01-20-2010, 09:16 AM
Is that toshiba projectors or any projector? Tanx

Tosh mostly. I think we can get Epson parts too.

audio amateur
01-20-2010, 09:35 AM
I'm looking at a full hd Optoma for 500 bucks:D Any idea how expensive their bulbs are?

GMichael
01-20-2010, 10:16 AM
I'm looking at a full hd Optoma for 500 bucks:D Any idea how expensive their bulbs are?
I would try this company first. http://www.dlplampsource.com/e-store/prod_thumbs.asp?brandList=Optoma&modelList=HD8000&srchtype=model&catID=1016181377040

Once you have the part number needed, you can check Google & Ebay for the best pricing.

nightflier
01-20-2010, 01:56 PM
I work in the laptop and printer parts business. We often see parts and even large assemblies from one manufacture being used in another's unit, but I don't ever remember anyone completely "re-badging" another's printer in whole.

I believe that Canon still designs, manufactures, and assembles all of HP's printers, and the badge on the front is just that, a badge. The big difference, is that the price difference between Canon and HP printers isn't $2K.

I'm really surprised that Lexicon is sticking to their guns, not just because of the negative popular press, but also considering the negative response it will be getting from the audio community. As has been pointed out, it calls all hi-fi into question and could affect sales across this industry, especially in this economy. I sure hope Michael Fremer doesn't come out in defense of Lexicon....

audio amateur
01-20-2010, 02:03 PM
I would try this company first. http://www.dlplampsource.com/e-store/prod_thumbs.asp?brandList=Optoma&modelList=HD8000&srchtype=model&catID=1016181377040

Once you have the part number needed, you can check Google & Ebay for the best pricing.
Cool, thanks

GMichael
01-20-2010, 02:38 PM
I believe that Canon still designs, manufactures, and assembles all of HP's printers, and the badge on the front is just that, a badge. The big difference, is that the price difference between Canon and HP printers isn't $2K.

I'm really surprised that Lexicon is sticking to their guns, not just because of the negative popular press, but also considering the negative response it will be getting from the audio community. As has been pointed out, it calls all hi-fi into question and could affect sales across this industry, especially in this economy. I sure hope Michael Fremer doesn't come out in defense of Lexicon....

It's one heck of a big degree though. That's like saying that cutting your finger and chopping your head off are the same thing. Just a matter of degree.

nightflier
01-20-2010, 02:49 PM
It's one heck of a big degree though. That's like saying that cutting your finger and chopping your head off are the same thing. Just a matter of degree.

...tapeworm.

Just kidding, yes, I think the crux of the issue is the huge price difference. As someone who just paid $1300 for a rebadged Oppo (albeit modded, too), I can tell you that it took a lot of second-guessing before I was willing to do that, especially w/o hearing it first. My results were positive, but I also realize that I'm one of only a handful of people who happened to have a regular Oppo on hand to compare it with (and a preamp with two MC inputs). I wonder how many Lexicon owners also had an Oppo on hand - my guess is that Lexicon was hoping very few people who would pay $2.5K for a player would even bother with a $500 one. I guess they forgot about the reviewers.

Mr Peabody
01-20-2010, 05:03 PM
I don't see how Fremer could defend Lexicon unless he has some proof to back it up. Also, in your case NF you knew it was an Oppo with mods. Those who bought a Lexicon expected a Lexicon. I guess they figure the best defense is to act like they did nothing wrong.

I also wonder if the reason NAD's first player came and went so fast is because of it's striking resemblence to an LG.

Ajani
01-20-2010, 05:21 PM
Considering the Kal Robinson reviewed the Lexicon, I don't see how or why Fremer would be commenting on it....

GMichael
01-21-2010, 07:12 AM
...tapeworm.

Just kidding, yes, I think the crux of the issue is the huge price difference. As someone who just paid $1300 for a rebadged Oppo (albeit modded, too), I can tell you that it took a lot of second-guessing before I was willing to do that, especially w/o hearing it first. My results were positive, but I also realize that I'm one of only a handful of people who happened to have a regular Oppo on hand to compare it with (and a preamp with two MC inputs). I wonder how many Lexicon owners also had an Oppo on hand - my guess is that Lexicon was hoping very few people who would pay $2.5K for a player would even bother with a $500 one. I guess they forgot about the reviewers.

There are some people out there with more money than they know what to do with. Many of them are willing to pay a lot extra just to be able to say that they have something that is not the same as everyone else's. (or in this case, just not look the same as everyone else's) Most of them don't research what they are buying. They just buy the most expensive one they can find.

Tarheel_
01-21-2010, 07:46 AM
Harmon Industries which owns Lexicon does this throughout it's products. They have custom JBL lines with some eq being re-badged Lexicon stuff. Example, the JBL AVA7 is a 7 channel amp which is basically a clone of the Lexicon GX-7, but cheaper and in black.
Here is the JBL site....http://www.jblsynthesis.com/products/the_systems.aspx?Language=ENG&Country=US&Region=USA

Honestly, I purchase JBL when my budget is tight because I know either the trickle down effect is in play or a re-badge of some type has taken place.
I just hope my Revels are not re-badged JBLs....lol.

audio amateur
01-21-2010, 07:58 AM
http://www.jblsynthesis.com/products/product_detail.aspx?prod=SDP40HD&Language=ENG&Country=US&Region=USA

Wow you're right it does look like a Lexicon!

Auricauricle
01-21-2010, 08:33 AM
Oh, how the mighty have fallen!

(Hee hee hee hee...)

Hyfi
01-21-2010, 09:00 AM
I just hope my Revels are not re-badged JBLs....lol.

Bose!

Hyfi
01-21-2010, 09:02 AM
There are some people out there with more money than they know what to do with. Many of them are willing to pay a lot extra just to be able to say that they have something that is not the same as everyone else's. (or in this case, just not look the same as everyone else's) Most of them don't research what they are buying. They just buy the most expensive one they can find.

You are not kidding. I have witnessed this in person many times when Soundex had the big store. I would watch a guy come in one day and drop 20k and then see him there two weeks later trading the stuff in for something 30k.

I also have some well off friends and they seem to judge everything on how much it cost and not it's actual value.

GMichael
01-21-2010, 09:37 AM
You are not kidding. I have witnessed this in person many times when Soundex had the big store. I would watch a guy come in one day and drop 20k and then see him there two weeks later trading the stuff in for something 30k.

I also have some well off friends and they seem to judge everything on how much it cost and not it's actual value.

If I had their kind of money, I might do the same thing.

Ajani
01-21-2010, 09:58 AM
Harmon Industries which owns Lexicon does this throughout it's products. They have custom JBL lines with some eq being re-badged Lexicon stuff. Example, the JBL AVA7 is a 7 channel amp which is basically a clone of the Lexicon GX-7, but cheaper and in black.
Here is the JBL site....http://www.jblsynthesis.com/products/the_systems.aspx?Language=ENG&Country=US&Region=USA

Honestly, I purchase JBL when my budget is tight because I know either the trickle down effect is in play or a re-badge of some type has taken place.
I just hope my Revels are not re-badged JBLs....lol.

The Lexicon MC-12HD:

http://mcgrathcinema.com/eqlist/pics/mc12b.jpg

Looks nothing like the JBL Synthesis SDP40HD:

http://www.harmanaudio.com/images/products/front_large/SDP40HD.jpg

Now, to be fair to Harmon... They have generally shared cosmetics and technology within the group... The Revel Concerta, Infinity Beta and JBL Northridge Speakers all shared common aesthetics and used similar driver materials... Many reviews have compared these speakers against one another and there have always been differences, though whether the differences were worth it is left up to the consumer to decide...

Auricauricle
01-21-2010, 10:00 AM
Sad, but it seems so often, that common sense just goes out the window for some folks who think that expenditure and quality go hand in hand. I reckon just about anyone is prey, and there are impostors and charlatans alike, all lining up at the door to get a piece. Whether it's audio equipment, cars, cigars, wristwatches, neckties, or whatever, niche markets are funny places frequented by funny people. Sorry is the lot of they who view the crazy spectacle from the sidelines who jump in when they're flush knowing absolutely nothing about anything when they do. Guess, I'll just sit back in my chair here and laugh my asp off...while I drink a drink from my special order super duper one-of-a-kind beer...!

poppachubby
01-21-2010, 10:05 AM
The Lexicon MC-12HD:

Looks nothing like the JBL Synthesis SDP40HD:

...

You're right. One is black and one is silver...what are you talking about!?! They're carbon copies!!!

Ajani
01-21-2010, 10:07 AM
You're right. One is black and one is silver...what are you talking about!?! They're carbon copies!!!

U sure? But they look like totally different to me... Come on, one is black and the other is silver, there's no comparison...
:p :p

poppachubby
01-21-2010, 10:12 AM
U sure? But they look like totally different to me... Come on, one is black and the other is silver, there's no comparison...
:p :p


Heh, well done, but maybe too dry?

audio amateur
01-21-2010, 10:13 AM
Literally, carbon copies... I wonder what the price difference is

Ajani
01-21-2010, 10:37 AM
Heh, well done, but maybe too dry?

lol... yep... way too dry... that's why I had to get the pics together (else I look like I forgot to take my meds, rather than that I'm being sarcastic)...

Auricauricle
01-21-2010, 10:50 AM
Yeah...But it's black...!

Luvin Da Blues
01-22-2010, 05:06 AM
From Home Theatre Review

http://hometheaterreview.com/lexicon-bd-30-universal-blu-ray-player-reviewed/


"I am sure people will attack this player as a "rebadged" Oppo, so I went out and bought an Oppo BD-83 SE in order to fairly compare the two. First off, there is no comparison between the build quality of the two players. The Oppo is lighter and the buttons have a far less solid feel to them. The Lexicon is a taller, much heftier unit. Black levels were close, but the Lexicon had a more natural contrast and color palette than the Oppo. More importantly, the Lexicon was nearly totally silent when loading discs and changing tracks. Those familiar with the Oppo know it is a rather noisy player when loading discs, switching tracks and scanning, even sometimes for no apparent reason. The drive is in the Oppo is noisy enough to catch my attention during quiet passages in movies, while the Lexicon is inaudible during use at all times."

Feanor
01-22-2010, 05:55 AM
From Home Theatre Review

http://hometheaterreview.com/lexicon-bd-30-universal-blu-ray-player-reviewed/


"I am sure people will attack this player as a "rebadged" Oppo, so I went out and bought an Oppo BD-83 SE in order to fairly compare the two. First off, there is no comparison between the build quality of the two players. The Oppo is lighter and the buttons have a far less solid feel to them. The Lexicon is a taller, much heftier unit. Black levels were close, but the Lexicon had a more natural contrast and color palette than the Oppo. More importantly, the Lexicon was nearly totally silent when loading discs and changing tracks. Those familiar with the Oppo know it is a rather noisy player when loading discs, switching tracks and scanning, even sometimes for no apparent reason. The drive is in the Oppo is noisy enough to catch my attention during quiet passages in movies, while the Lexicon is inaudible during use at all times."
But then one must make the personal decission: are these differences really worth $2500 less the Lexicon dealer discount -- upon which one would certainly insist.

Bear in mind the AudioAdvisor reviewer felt the machines were indentical internally; the black level difference, etc., could just be unit to unit variation.

Worf101
01-22-2010, 05:59 AM
From Home Theatre Review

http://hometheaterreview.com/lexicon-bd-30-universal-blu-ray-player-reviewed/


"I am sure people will attack this player as a "rebadged" Oppo, so I went out and bought an Oppo BD-83 SE in order to fairly compare the two. First off, there is no comparison between the build quality of the two players. The Oppo is lighter and the buttons have a far less solid feel to them. The Lexicon is a taller, much heftier unit. Black levels were close, but the Lexicon had a more natural contrast and color palette than the Oppo. More importantly, the Lexicon was nearly totally silent when loading discs and changing tracks. Those familiar with the Oppo know it is a rather noisy player when loading discs, switching tracks and scanning, even sometimes for no apparent reason. The drive is in the Oppo is noisy enough to catch my attention during quiet passages in movies, while the Lexicon is inaudible during use at all times."
I read the review and many of the responses to it. The outcry was so loud, so venemous and so overwhelming that HomeTheatreReview has changed it's comment process. You now have to have a facebook account to comment on reviews. In otherwords, no more anonymous comments attacking their Lexicon product and more important, the HTR reviewer who's desperately trying to spin Lexicon out of this mess.

It is a mess simple and plain and the responses of HTR, it's reviewer and Lexicon are quite patently sad. As for their review? I have never heard any of the "noise" this reviewer is referring to with my Oppo? Actually I wonder just how long he spent listening and evaluating the Oppo on its on, without this controversy clouding his mind. Well, in the end, folks vote with their pocket books and the polls haven't closed yet.

Worf

Luvin Da Blues
01-22-2010, 06:01 AM
But then one must make the personal decission: are these differences really worth $2500 less the Lexicon dealer discount -- upon which one would certainly insist.

Bear in mind the AudioAdvisor reviewer felt the machines were indentical internally; the black level difference, etc., could just be unit to unit variation.

Just the messenger Bill. I thought this was funny actually, $2500 premium for a new face plate. a little dampening and possibly a bench calibration is absurd.

LDB

Luvin Da Blues
01-22-2010, 06:06 AM
As for their review? I have never heard any of the "noise" this reviewer is referring to with my Oppo? Worf

My 981 is almost dead silent also, at least from my listening position.

Ajani
01-22-2010, 06:53 AM
Guys remember that the HTR review was out before the scandal broke on audioholics... When the story broke, the HTR reviewer got ripped a new one in the comments section for doing an incompetent review... So this is not a case of someone trying to disprove the findings of Audioholics... But a reviewer being embarrassed for doing a bad job...

Auricauricle
01-22-2010, 07:44 AM
Two words: "Color palette".

Oooooooh...

nightflier
01-22-2010, 01:26 PM
Any other manufacturers who appear to be re-branding and charging a wallop? Inquiring minds want to know.

Ajani
01-22-2010, 02:52 PM
Revel Concerta F12:
http://www.revelspeakers.com/images/gallery/f12_347.jpg

JBL Northridge E90:
http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41MPHP7815L._SS500_.jpg

Infinity Beta 50:
http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/31FQ918Y6VL._SS500_.jpg

All 3 way designs with dual 8 inch woofers and the same driver material used from Twin Woofers to Tweeters...

audio amateur
01-22-2010, 03:29 PM
Okay I'm not buying anything from the Harmon group now..

Ajani
01-22-2010, 03:32 PM
Okay I'm not buying anything from the Harmon group now..

Not so fast... All 3 products were supposed to be good in their price classes (which aren't that far apart)... and they are supposed to sound different... They just share a lot of design elements and material

nightflier
01-22-2010, 04:17 PM
Wasn't JBL once a respected speaker manufacturer?

Ajani
01-22-2010, 04:42 PM
Wasn't JBL once a respected speaker manufacturer?

Yes...

02audionoob
01-22-2010, 04:54 PM
Does this kill anyone's impression of Revel? or is it just me? :(

Ajani
01-22-2010, 05:06 PM
Does this kill anyone's impression of Revel? or is it just me? :(

For some persons: yes... for me: no - because I've auditioned them... and also because I don't hate on JBL or Infinity (they are decent value for their prices)...

Mr Peabody
01-22-2010, 08:07 PM
I have not liked any JBL speakers I've heard so far. I'd like to hear those Northridge to see if it could change my mind. There's just something about the sound, it's like a frequency band is missing or something. I've only heard a $10k pair of Revel and was very under whelmed. If that was the $10k I have no use for the rest of the line. Infinity in the 80's &
90's was good for each price point. When they moved them to the East coast the company went to hell. It's been a couple years since I've heard any Infinity so not sure if they've tried to bring the line back. JBL at one time had a good piece of the Pro market. I can't say how they do now I haven't been in that in a long long time. I feel Harmon's neglect of the Infinity line is what gave Polk such a leg up in that mass market store crowd. It was a big mistake to stop the Studio Monitor line. As bad as I disliked the stuff, you demo a nice RS series then crank the SM and guess what went out the door 90% of the time. The SM was a money maker.

IBSTORMIN
01-22-2010, 10:09 PM
I feel Harmon's neglect of the Infinity line is what gave Polk such a leg up in that mass market store crowd.

It seems like in the last 20 years, Infinity comes out with the new technology and a few years later Polk copied and ran with it with better advertising and better success. You mentioned Infinity in the 90's when they had soft dome tweeters before they came out with the CMMD line. Polk is using soft dome tweeters now with great success. Back in the 90's and early 2000's when I compared Polk and Infinity, the Infinity always sounded cleaner than Polk, even if they were using the same drivers. Infinity always seemed to have better quality sound than Polk. Infinity's latest design was a flat panel oval shaped CMMD woofer/midrange that seems to have bombed. http://www.infinitysystems.com/home/products/product_detail.aspx?prod=CASCADE9BK&cat=BFS&ser=CSC&Language=ENG&Region=USA&Country=US
I recently saw that Definitive Technology has a new line with a powered woofer section (something Infinity has been doing for two decades, basically doing the bi-amping for you), with several flat panel oval shaped woofers that look just like what Infinity had. The Def Tech are supposedly highly acclaimed. They look like the 90's Infinity Overture 3 powered towers with the 2 midrange flanking the tweeter in a module at the top and the woofers below with oval drivers instead of round, a mixture of Infinity technologies.
http://www.audioreview.com/cat/speakers/floorstanding-speakers/infinity-systems/compositions-overture-3/PRD_119657_1594crx.aspx
http://www.definitivetech.com/Products/FloorStand/default.aspx
Seems like Infinity has just lost it's name as people always want something new, not what Dad used to buy. Infinity develops the new technology and someone else copies and makes a success of it. It is sad I didn't sell my Harman stock a few years ago when it peaked over $100!

02audionoob
01-22-2010, 10:41 PM
For some persons: yes... for me: no - because I've auditioned them... and also because I don't hate on JBL or Infinity (they are decent value for their prices)...

I see the one boutique hi-fi store in my town carries Revel. Maybe I'll have to drop by and act interested. Hey, there's a recession on...how busy can they be?

poppachubby
01-22-2010, 10:54 PM
I have a mint pair of JBL L-110, old school. I absolutely love them to death. These are the cousin of the legendary Century L-100, which still fetch several hundred dollars on the used market. Haven't heard anything recently, nor do I want to. They look like everything else out there, and from what I've heard, sound that way also.

audio amateur
01-23-2010, 06:48 AM
Did infinity go to hell before they came out with the Prelude MTS?
6599
I believe these came out in '99 or so. I heard the smaller bookshelves from the series and was quite impressed. I wish I could get my ears on these though

IBSTORMIN
01-23-2010, 07:05 AM
Did infinity go to hell before they came out with the Prelude MTS?
6599
I believe these came out in '99 or so. I heard the smaller bookshelves from the series and was quite impressed. I wish I could get my ears on these though

I have the predecessor to the Prelude MTS, The Prelude P-FR and really like them. I would like to try the MTS myself. Infinity usually comes out with a new driver technology and builds a wonderful sounding flagship speaker like the P-FR and MTS. Everything else in their line is then smaller with less drivers and compromises to bring the cost down where normal people can afford them. I am a normal person (up for some debate) and bought the P-FR used as I couldn't afford the $4500 price tag when they were new. I think the CMMD tweeter in the MTS is so crisp it takes the multiple midrange drivers to tame it and make it sound good. I think that is what hurt Infinity because to me their smaller speakers were way too bright. Same I have felt about JBL with their pure titanium tweeters. Just too bright in a two or three driver enclosure.

kexodusc
01-23-2010, 07:21 AM
I'm not a big fan of JBL, but those Northridge speakers were "ok"...I'd put them up against similarly priced speakers from the likes of Polk, PSB and B&W. Not my cup of tea...but they aren't terrible and could be bought on sale a lot from what I saw.

Just comment on the similarities between these speakers...I'd bet that Harman isn't re-badging speakers here despite the similarities, though no doubt there's some sharing of technology and synergy there. Those drivers might use the same material, but that doesn't mean anything - you can buy a $15-$20 driver you'd see in a $500-$1000 speaker, and it would look the same as a $40-60 you'd find in a $2000-$3000 speaker...the difference could be in the frame material and design, and especially the motor...I bet those Revels have a thicker, heavier cabinet (my quick google search suggests 12 lbs weight difference) which is better braced and finished, and higher quality crossover components too, though I could be wrong. These would make a far greater difference in sound that the choice of cone material.

02audionoob
01-23-2010, 07:28 AM
I wouldn't suspect Harman of a simple re-badge on this. To me, it's just a bit of a loss of cool factor...like when one of the Big 3 auto makers buys a European auto maker.

Sir Terrence the Terrible
01-23-2010, 07:51 AM
For some persons: yes... for me: no - because I've auditioned them... and also because I don't hate on JBL or Infinity (they are decent value for their prices)...

I have to agree with you. I love Revel's speakers. What was your impression of the Concerto speaker?

Having been to the Harmon Groups headquarters quite a few times, it is my impression that their products lines across all of under the umbrella of Harmon share designs and testing facilities, but not internal parts. The Concerto line uses more outsourced parts, while the upper priced models internal parts are made at Harmon.

IBSTORMIN
01-23-2010, 09:41 AM
The JBL Northridge is no longer in production but uses a titanium tweeter and poly mid and woofer. It has a front firing port which I have never liked on any speaker. Their ES series still in production sounds better. I compared them when they were both on the market and bought their ES outdoor speakers instead of the Northridge. Probably better bracing and crossovers, maybe an advance driver that looks the same. Not sure. I know they make a pure titamium tweeter and a laminate titanium tweeter that look identical but sound different.
The Infinity Beta uses Ceramic Metal Matrix Diaphrams (C.M.M.D.) throghout. It has a rear-firing port which if you must have one, I prefer rear-firing. I like speakers without woofer ports best because the bass sounds more natural instead of boomy, but they port them for the masses for the impact/thump.
The Revel Concerta uses Organic Ceramic Composite drivers throughout (O.C.C.) and looks just like the CMMD. Maybe they use more exotic materials than the Infinity, maybe not. Heavier so it probably has better bracing and crossovers. Again a rear firing port.

audio amateur
01-23-2010, 10:57 AM
Ibstormin, many, many high end speakers use ports. I think you're generalising too much by saying that all ported designs sound boomy. Perhaps you've those you;ve heard you didn't like but to say sealed is better than ported isn't fair.

Speaking of your speakers, I didn't the MTS had a predecessor. Look pretty sweet!

Ajani
01-23-2010, 11:58 AM
The JBL Northridge is no longer in production but uses a titanium tweeter and poly mid and woofer. It has a front firing port which I have never liked on any speaker. Their ES series still in production sounds better. I compared them when they were both on the market and bought their ES outdoor speakers instead of the Northridge. Probably better bracing and crossovers, maybe an advance driver that looks the same. Not sure. I know they make a pure titamium tweeter and a laminate titanium tweeter that look identical but sound different.
The Infinity Beta uses Ceramic Metal Matrix Diaphrams (C.M.M.D.) throghout. It has a rear-firing port which if you must have one, I prefer rear-firing. I like speakers without woofer ports best because the bass sounds more natural instead of boomy, but they port them for the masses for the impact/thump.
The Revel Concerta uses Organic Ceramic Composite drivers throughout (O.C.C.) and looks just like the CMMD. Maybe they use more exotic materials than the Infinity, maybe not. Heavier so it probably has better bracing and crossovers. Again a rear firing port.

I probably should have made it clearer that I was saying the speakers used the same material from woofer to tweeter and not that all 3 speakers use the exact same material... the Revel and Infinity drivers are especially similar... Different names though for the material... But despite the similarities, reviews indicate that the 3 models sound different... so there are probably many differences internally... it's just that the Harmon group shares design and parts across their product lines (nothing actually wrong with that)...

Ajani
01-23-2010, 12:11 PM
I have to agree with you. I love Revel's speakers. What was your impression of the Concerto speaker?

Having been to the Harmon Groups headquarters quite a few times, it is my impression that their products lines across all of under the umbrella of Harmon share designs and testing facilities, but not internal parts. The Concerto line uses more outsourced parts, while the upper priced models internal parts are made at Harmon.

The Concerta F12 are still my favorite sub $2K speakers.... And depending on what my budget is when I finally upgrade, maybe my next set of Towers (the only issue I've had with them are their size and looks - they really are not subtle looking speakers, meant to blend in with a room)... The traits that won me over were the coherency of the drivers... using one material from woofer to tweeter has resulted in a seamless sound IMO, which is quite refreshing from some of the other brands I've heard where the tweeter sounds different from the mid, which sounds different from the woofer... Also the dynamics, being able to get near full range sound at $1.5K is a very good thing....

I'm actually torn between the F12s at $1.5K and the M22s + Stands at $2.25K... I've auditioned both and liked both... I'm trying to decide whether I'm willing to give up the bass extension of the F12s for the more refined sound of the M22s.... Luckily for me, Revel, Krell and Mark Levinson are a few of the brands available in Jamaica for prices close to their US MSRP (the other stuff generally costs at least 50% more than MSRP)...

Anyway, eventually I'll make up my mind (no rush really as my AKG cans and M-Audio actives are doing the job for now)...

Ajani
01-23-2010, 12:16 PM
I have not liked any JBL speakers I've heard so far. I'd like to hear those Northridge to see if it could change my mind. There's just something about the sound, it's like a frequency band is missing or something. I've only heard a $10k pair of Revel and was very under whelmed. If that was the $10k I have no use for the rest of the line. Infinity in the 80's &
90's was good for each price point. When they moved them to the East coast the company went to hell. It's been a couple years since I've heard any Infinity so not sure if they've tried to bring the line back. JBL at one time had a good piece of the Pro market. I can't say how they do now I haven't been in that in a long long time. I feel Harmon's neglect of the Infinity line is what gave Polk such a leg up in that mass market store crowd. It was a big mistake to stop the Studio Monitor line. As bad as I disliked the stuff, you demo a nice RS series then crank the SM and guess what went out the door 90% of the time. The SM was a money maker.

Your experience with Revel left you underwhelmed as did mine with Dynaudio... but what i find intriguing is the number of times I've checked a user forum and seen members trying to decide between Revel and Dynaudio... It seems most persons seem to like both and consider them to sound similar...

Ajani
01-23-2010, 12:21 PM
I wouldn't suspect Harman of a simple re-badge on this. To me, it's just a bit of a loss of cool factor...like when one of the Big 3 auto makers buys a European auto maker.

That loss of the Cool Factor is probably why they started Revel in the first place... JBL and Infinity still receive a number of good reviews, but are not highly regarded by most Audiophiles...

I strongly suspect that their presence at Best Buy and Future Shop has a lot to do with their lack of status with audiophiles... Whereas Revel is only available at high end dealers, it has a much easier time being credible with audiophiles...

IBSTORMIN
01-23-2010, 03:40 PM
Ibstormin, many, many high end speakers use ports. I think you're generalising too much by saying that all ported designs sound boomy. Perhaps you've those you;ve heard you didn't like but to say sealed is better than ported isn't fair.!

Ports are used to add what the drivers cannot produce by themselves, or to add punch. In my opinion, it's a poor compromise. About a year ago I listened to a pair of $9,000 speakers from I think Def Tech and it had a front firing port. Immediately I could hear the sound coming from the port focused on a specific frequency. Ruined a perfectly good speaker IMHO. Mr P mentioned the SM line of Infinity. I never really thought about ported design until I had a pair of SM155 which was a three way with a 15" woofer. The pair sounded much better with the rear-firing port plugged with a wad of speaker stuffing. It flattened out the low end response so all bass notes had the same volume, just like they were originally recorded.



Speaking of your speakers, I didn't know the MTS had a predecessor. Look pretty sweet!
Thanks, I like them but am now also a Maggie man. Depends on the music and my mood which I listen to.

audio amateur
01-23-2010, 04:24 PM
It really depends on the drivers, some work a lot better with ports than others. Some, you simply need use in a ported design to get good results. Anyhow, don't dismiss a speaker simply because it is a ported design, you could be missing out on a lot of good stuff.

That's a pretty nice 'office' system you have!

IBSTORMIN
01-23-2010, 05:05 PM
It really depends on the drivers, some work a lot better with ports than others. Some, you simply need use in a ported design to get good results. Anyhow, don't dismiss a speaker simply because it is a ported design, you could be missing out on a lot of good stuff. I don't dismiss anything I haven't heard. I was just mentioning what my experience has been in the past


That's a pretty nice 'office' system you have!
Thanks again. It contains my cast offs from the basement, which I am in the process of changing back from HT to stereo only. The HT things I have in the basement sound better in stereo than the office stuff.

Mr Peabody
01-23-2010, 05:20 PM
My Dyn's are front firing, you are, going to have to get over IBstormin.

I also heard some Dali's today with a front firing port. A little 2-way with a cost of about $675.00 a pair which were impressive for the price.

IBSTORMIN
01-23-2010, 06:15 PM
My Dyn's are front firing, you are, going to have to get over IBstormin.

You are right, I do. It will be more interesting than I tought. I'll bring my Preludes and M-588 for comparison.


I also heard some Dali's today with a front firing port. A little 2-way with a cost of about $675.00 a pair which were impressive for the price. Dali was recommended a year ago by an audio store in San Diego I visited that was closing as I arrived. I've still not gotten a chance to listen to them so we will have to go by there when I come out. I have a pair of Infinity RS-3 which is a 2-way bookshelf speaker that once again, I plug the port and they sound much better than with the port open, with or without a sub filling out the bottom.

Mr Peabody
01-23-2010, 06:35 PM
Ajani, I heard my first pair of Monitor Audio today. It was a bookshelf speaker I can't remember the model, they were about $1.6k and I believe in the Gold series. First off, this was a bad demo, these guys had expensive speakers like the ones mentioned and up to a Paradigm Signature 8 hooked up to a swticher and on the other side of the switcher a $7.5k McIntosh. Pull their license :) Despite this the MA's sounded good, they actually had more bass punch than the Paradigm. I don't know what the issue was with the 8's the bass just wasn't there like I'd expect. We told the guy we thought they were out of phase. Huh? And, we wonder why people out here have different views on equipment. You could also tell the MA's had a hot high end. We were sitting 18 to 20 feet away so they didn't seem overly bright but with an extended listen, realistic distance away and proper set up I wonder.

Ajani
01-23-2010, 07:02 PM
Ajani, I heard my first pair of Monitor Audio today. It was a bookshelf speaker I can't remember the model, they were about $1.6k and I believe in the Gold series. First off, this was a bad demo, these guys had expensive speakers like the ones mentioned and up to a Paradigm Signature 8 hooked up to a swticher and on the other side of the switcher a $7.5k McIntosh. Pull their license :) Despite this the MA's sounded good, they actually had more bass punch than the Paradigm. I don't know what the issue was with the 8's the bass just wasn't there like I'd expect. We told the guy we thought they were out of phase. Huh? And, we wonder why people out here have different views on equipment. You could also tell the MA's had a hot high end. We were sitting 18 to 20 feet away so they didn't seem overly bright but with an extended listen, realistic distance away and proper set up I wonder.

The $1.6K Bookshelf is the Gold Series 10.... Careful system matching is a must, as they are bright... The GS20 should sound more balanced due to the additional bass driver (and is my favorite approx $3K Speaker - such a shame I have no local Monitor Audio Dealer :frown2: )..

I found that at a normal listening distance (about 9 feet), and with an extended audition of about 45 minutes I had no issue with the GS20 being fatiguing... Unlike the B&W CM1, 805S and 703 which I found really fatiguing in about 20 minutes.... (but I've heard people claim the opposite result - so it might be a matter of system synergy)...

Now, I really think I might need to figure out how to give Dynaudio another audition and see if maybe it was just the particular setup that left me so unimpressed...

RGA
01-23-2010, 07:14 PM
It's like anything else - there are good and bad sealed designs, good and bad ported - a lot of bad ported loudspeakers but then most speakers are ported so you will come across more bad ones as a result, and good and pad panels and on and on. I was happy to finally hear some outstanding panels and outstanding speakers with multiple stacked woofers with four drivers and one with 5 and a good line array.

Some designs just cost more to do well - horns get a bad rap but most often people judge horns off one or two companies in the $600 price range -(say Klipsch) and judge all horns off that.

winston
01-24-2010, 08:45 AM
Ajani@quote
All 3 way designs with dual 8 inch woofers and the same driver material used from Twin Woofers to Tweeters...

my observation was the same" when i was shopping for speakers to set up my HT" the Revel Concerta F12, Infinity Beta 50, Jbl North-ridge E 90, were on closed out at the same local. in my neck of the Hoods, I went back & forth for two days trying to compare the three speakers. the F12s were 950.00 ea the Beta 50s & E 90s, were 350.00 & 300.00 ea. upon my third visit the (the sales man pull me to the side and told me all three is the same designs, same woofer, mid, & tweeter material all assemble in Mexico.

Then he drop the bomb on me!!:idea: I walk out with the Beta 50s, beta 360c, & beta 20s all for $645.00 + taxes (no problem since 2006 as yet)

Ajani
01-24-2010, 09:08 AM
Ajani@quote
All 3 way designs with dual 8 inch woofers and the same driver material used from Twin Woofers to Tweeters...

my observation was the same" when i was shopping for speakers to set up my HT" the Revel Concerta F12, Infinity Beta 50, Jbl North-ridge E 90, were on closed out at the same local. in my neck of the Hoods, I went back & forth for two days trying to compare the three speakers. the F12s were 950.00 ea the Beta 50s & E 90s, were 350.00 & 300.00 ea. upon my third visit the (the sales man pull me to the side and told me all three is the same designs, same woofer, mid, & tweeter material all assemble in Mexico.

Then he drop the bomb on me!!:idea: I walk out with the Beta 50s, beta 360c, & beta 20s all for $645.00 + taxes (no problem since 2006 as yet)

The Beta 50 and F12 at MSRP were a lot closer in price than your dealer's sale... At $350 versus $950, I'd probably opt for the Beta too!!! At Retail, it would likely be a different story...

E-Stat
01-24-2010, 10:12 AM
Did infinity go to hell before they came out with the Prelude MTS?
There was a time when Infinity was Arnie Nudell. Not just another product line with which to share parts. The Servo Statik was his first product and anything but just another me-too design:

http://www.stereophile.com/images/archivesart/infssiapic1.jpg

Nudell moved on to using EMIMs in the early 80s and again, came out with another superlative speaker in the IRS. I vividly remember hearing them at length in 1980.

http://www.dougronald.com/images/IRS_2.jpg

I don't really understand why Infinity exists as a separate company any more. The similarities between the other Harmon product lines renders them irrelevant. There's JBL at the bottom (with a few oddball expensive horn designs) and Revel at the top.

rw

Ajani
01-24-2010, 10:41 AM
I don't really understand why Infinity exists as a separate company any more. The similarities between the other Harmon product lines renders them irrelevant. There's JBL at the bottom (with a few oddball expensive horn designs) and Revel at the top.

rw

I've often asked the same thing... It would make sense if the brand name was still worth a lot, but since it doesn't hold the same status, they probably should have just dissolved the brand and sent any talented employees over to either Revel or JBL...

Mr Peabody
01-24-2010, 10:55 AM
What they should have done was put the effort into Infinity and forget starting a new line like Revel. Pictures don't do me a lot of good, I'd be interested in knowing how close the Concerta/Beta/Northridge come to the old Infinity RS-6001 in desing and looks.

Ajani
01-24-2010, 11:03 AM
What they should have done was put the effort into Infinity and forget starting a new line like Revel.

Quite possibly.... Though it depends on how bad Infinity's rep was when they started Revel... Since it is often easier to start over with a clean sheet than to try and fix a sour reputation....

IBSTORMIN
01-24-2010, 03:09 PM
The Beta 50 and F12 at MSRP were a lot closer in price than your dealer's sale... At $350 versus $950, I'd probably opt for the Beta too!!! At Retail, it would likely be a different story...

Agreed. The drivers in the Infinity and Revel are probably identical, both a layered aluminum/ceramic even though they call them something different. That is probably why the MSRP is closer. The JBL has titanium tweeters and poly mid/woof and retail for much less than the other two. Picking the Infinity up for the JBL price was a steal.

Sir Terrence the Terrible
01-24-2010, 03:19 PM
Ajani@quote
All 3 way designs with dual 8 inch woofers and the same driver material used from Twin Woofers to Tweeters...

my observation was the same" when i was shopping for speakers to set up my HT" the Revel Concerta F12, Infinity Beta 50, Jbl North-ridge E 90, were on closed out at the same local. in my neck of the Hoods, I went back & forth for two days trying to compare the three speakers. the F12s were 950.00 ea the Beta 50s & E 90s, were 350.00 & 300.00 ea. upon my third visit the (the sales man pull me to the side and told me all three is the same designs, same woofer, mid, & tweeter material all assemble in Mexico.

Then he drop the bomb on me!!:idea: I walk out with the Beta 50s, beta 360c, & beta 20s all for $645.00 + taxes (no problem since 2006 as yet)

I cannot agree with this assessment(except the assembly location). When I last visited there last year(looking for monitors for my post facility), they laid out the drivers of all three of these of these brands (and several more models from various price points across brands from Harmon), and the parts for the Revel were not the same as the JBL or Infinity speakers. I however saw that parts from the Infinity and JBL were consistently similar throughout both brands product range. The Revels tweeter and mid was totally different, and the woofers looked similar but more robust and substantial in comparison to the JBL and Infinity woofer from behind. The crossover was also different from the JBL and Infinity.

winston
01-24-2010, 09:17 PM
I cannot agree with this assessment(except the assembly location). When I last visited there last year(looking for monitors for my post facility), they laid out the drivers of all three of these of these brands (and several more models from various price points across brands from Harmon), and the parts for the Revel were not the same as the JBL or Infinity speakers. I however saw that parts from the Infinity and JBL were consistently similar throughout both brands product range. The Revels tweeter and mid was totally different, and the woofers looked similar but more robust and substantial in comparison to the JBL and Infinity woofer from behind. The crossover was also different from the JBL and Infinity.
Sir T the T " I had no doubt that the (Revels F12s) were the top of that line yes Sir" in every way... but I always love that Beta line" if I had to buy them at full retail price i know that I would be better off negotiating a deal on the F12s! as the retail price on the Beta 50 was 600,ea C360 was 400,ea 20s was 400 pr. from they came out in 203 or 204

The sales man description probably wasn't accurate" but those Beta was looking very nice and very close to the revels quality!! and I had a great deal on them

audio amateur
01-25-2010, 05:36 AM
There was a time when Infinity was Arnie Nudell. Not just another product line with which to share parts. The Servo Statik was his first product and anything but just another me-too design:

Nudell moved on to using EMIMs in the early 80s and again, came out with another superlative speaker in the IRS. I vividly remember hearing them at length in 1980.

I don't really understand why Infinity exists as a separate company any more. The similarities between the other Harmon product lines renders them irrelevant. There's JBL at the bottom (with a few oddball expensive horn designs) and Revel at the top.

rw
The IRS do look like giant killers. Are those ribbons open baffle or are they in a box?

I'm guessing Infinity was having a hard time if they were bought by harmon, which probably lead them to create speakers they could sell better. But you're right, why create another line? Infinity should go back to it's roots and make similar speakers to the IRS, if not a little smaller so that people will actually have room for them :D

Ajani
01-25-2010, 06:21 AM
Infinity should go back to it's roots and make similar speakers to the IRS, if not a little smaller so that people will actually have room for them :D

Or can afford them? Since if I'm not mistaken, the IRS were exceptionally expensive...

E-Stat
01-25-2010, 06:35 AM
The IRS do look like giant killers. Are those ribbons open baffle or are they in a box?
They were quite good in their day, although I found the transition from the midrange ribbons to the huge servo woofers was a bit abrupt. Open baffle although the tweeters were sealed and required separate units on the back.


I'm guessing Infinity was having a hard time if they were bought by harmon, which probably lead them to create speakers they could sell better. But you're right, why create another line? Infinity should go back to it's roots and make similar speakers to the IRS, if not a little smaller so that people will actually have room for them :D
Nudell was far gone having created Genesis in the 90s. The Genesis One was the similarly configured follow up to the IRS and weighed a bit over a ton!

rw

winston
01-25-2010, 09:15 AM
Or can afford them? Since if I'm not mistaken, the IRS were exceptionally expensive...
yes Ajani" they were around $20,000 per pair if my old head serves me right speaking which was a LOT of money back then!! around that time also they made one the first small/mini speakers that could play Very Very LOUD!! i believe the name of it was the (INFINITESIMAL) ??!! yes i remember these little speakers well...because it was At the Time When Size Really Matters !! yah man" Infinity Is American!!

E-Stat
01-25-2010, 09:36 AM
yes Ajani" they were around $20,000 per pair if my old head serves me right speaking which was a LOT of money back then!!
To split hairs, it actually ran more like $30k in 1980. It was a statement product which was quite impressive and offered technologies that trickled down to a whole range of products using the EMIM/EMIT drivers.

rw

stevenv
01-26-2010, 03:58 PM
Good work from Audioholics via The Consumerist:

http://consumerist.com/2010/01/company-puts-500-blu-ray-player-in-new-case-charges-3000-markup-and-gets-caught.html

http://www.audioholics.com/reviews/transports/high-definition-dvd-players-hd-dvd-blu-ray/lexicon-bd-30-blu-ray-oppo-clone/oppo-inside-lexicon-outside-1

Great gotcha journalism from Audioholics. Maybe it will open the door to more thorough investigation from other audio reviewers. And not necessarily the blatant rip-offs. I'm also referring the the insanely subjective reviews found in magazines such as Stereophile.


Great find. I loved it. I am sure it cost $3000 to get the THX cer :thumbsup:

nightflier
01-28-2010, 11:24 AM
Here's another Reviewer's persepective (pretty much the same line, though):

http://www.avguide.com/blog/first-listen-lexicon-bd-30-universal-blu-ray-player?src=Playback

Or is this the same article that was discussed earlier? In any case the comments that follow are entertaining to read.

What I really would like more "reviewers" to address is what the effect of this has been on how high-end audio is perceived. Personally if I was a hi-fi dealer, I'd have quite a bit to say about this.

Ahem... some of the products that I've been a bit skeptical about are the hi-priced digital media streamers like Soloos - sure it's pretty, but let's be honest, it's just a computer with a touch screen running slightly massaged OpenSource software. In the end, putting a Meridian label on a computer doesn't justify charging $10K for it. As a matter of fact, after yesterday's presentation by Steve Jobs, I think the iPad and an external Dac can do most of what Soloos does for a fraction of the cost.

E-Stat
01-28-2010, 11:42 AM
This does not come as a surprise to me. For years many high end manufacturers have been pulling the wool over consumers eyes by using cheap components in their equipment and charging hundreds if not thousands more because they have the name to back it up.
What high end companies are you referring to that used cheap components?

As for other rebadged products, I know that Innersound amps were built by Coda for many years. Coda was another offshoot of the original Threshold company and produced high quality gear.

rw

Ajani
01-28-2010, 11:53 AM
Here's another Reviewer's persepective (pretty much the same line, though):

http://www.avguide.com/blog/first-listen-lexicon-bd-30-universal-blu-ray-player?src=Playback

Or is this the same article that was discussed earlier? In any case the comments that follow are entertaining to read.

What I really would like more "reviewers" to address is what the effect of this has been on how high-end audio is perceived. Personally if I was a hi-fi dealer, I'd have quite a bit to say about this.

Ahem... some of the products that I've been a bit skeptical about are the hi-priced digital media streamers like Soloos - sure it's pretty, but let's be honest, it's just a computer with a touch screen running slightly massaged OpenSource software. In the end, putting a Meridian label on a computer doesn't justify charging $10K for it. As a matter of fact, after yesterday's presentation by Steve Jobs, I think the iPad and an external Dac can do most of what Soloos does for a fraction of the cost.

That's a new link... Thanks for posting it... It is way too polite about what Lexicon did though... Frankly it really sounds as if there is an attempt to in some way justify the price difference, by saying that Lexicon has a supportive dealer network.... I'm seriously supposed to pay 7x the price for that??? Riiiiiiight :out:

Auricauricle
01-28-2010, 04:29 PM
God, I remember those massive Infinities...Never listened to 'em. Always thought I'd have to put on a gorilla suit if I did.....Wow...Just, wow!

RGA
01-28-2010, 06:27 PM
As an addition what you are paying for with the meridian system is in two parts - the touch screen loading aspect is NOT required for playback - you can use a laptop to save yourself money - the soolos interface is $5,000 but if you don't want it don't buy it.

My dealer carries it and I saw first hand how it works and I have to say it's pretty cool and very easy to use that old geezer audiophiles can use it without an instruction book. Simply insert disc and it automatically stores it with the picture of the album and play list - it's dead easy to use. Something that itunes is not. And the new iPad looks to be a piece of utter junk http://gizmodo.com/5458382/8-things-that-suck-about-the-ipad

Incidentally the sound of the Meridian soolos system was very good and the interface is very good. Whether it's worth 12 grand is an entirely other matter - perhaps wait for the Chinese to copy it and come out with their own version for $2,000.

nightflier
01-29-2010, 02:55 PM
GRA, ironically, the Sooloos does less than the iPad. I agree that the iPad is basically a dissapointement for those who wanted it to be a complete computer (it's basically an eBook reader that plays video). But it's also true that if the iPad wasn't hobbled by iTune's interface and allowed another one to be installed, it would pretty much be the Sooloos minus a good DAC. But more to the point, the iPad costs just $500, 1/10th the price of the Sooloos.

Yes, I agree that the Meridian interface is cool for the technologically-challenged, but it's still an OpenSource app that they've massaged a little bit - in short: it's not their own innovation. Actually nothing on the Sooloos, is - it's a bunch of cobbled together existing technologies... and for that "hard" work they get to charge $10-12K for it?

Yes, I agree, there's always someone dumb enough to pay for the convenience, but we have to be honest about what it is above all: over-priced rebadging.

RGA
01-29-2010, 03:10 PM
Well I agree - I certainly won't be in line paying $5grand for the thing. It's one of those - "this is cool and it works great" but my laptop will run it just fine and there is no "sound quality" aspect to the thing so it's not worth it IMO.

For $5 grand this is what I will be looking at - no wonderful features but it will get my butt off the couch to change the cd myself. http://spintricity.com/64/6873/jan-2010/ces-2010---audio-federation-audio-note-uk#/64/6877/jan-2010/ces-2010---audio-note-continued-2

Tarheel_
05-05-2010, 06:25 PM
WOW! Hate i dropped off this thread back in Jan. I've owned Revels since 2003 or 2002, can't remember, anyway, i' ve returned to the dealer many times and listened to both Revel and Infinity speakers and they sound somewhat similar (in a good way), but yet quite different.
Meaning, Harmon does share technology and with my limited budget, i take advantage of this scenario... while i cannot afford Revels to complete my 7.1 setup, i use Infinity Primus speakers to round out my side and rear speakers (because of the close timbre match).
While I don't think they re-badge everything, i do think the technology is shared and for that reason alone you can piece together a very nice surround setup without breaking the bank going with the high end brand.
If your looking for a nice mid level surround system, you could do much worse than a Revel/Infinity/JBL mismatch system. Trust me, I stayed at a Holiday Inn Express!

winston
05-10-2010, 08:06 AM
WOW! Hate i dropped off this thread back in Jan. I've owned Revels since 2003 or 2002, can't remember, anyway, i' ve returned to the dealer many times and listened to both Revel and Infinity speakers and they sound somewhat similar (in a good way), but yet quite different.
Meaning, Harmon does share technology and with my limited budget, i take advantage of this scenario... while i cannot afford Revels to complete my 7.1 setup, i use Infinity Primus speakers to round out my side and rear speakers (because of the close timbre match).
While I don't think they re-badge everything, i do think the technology is shared and for that reason alone you can piece together a very nice surround setup without breaking the bank going with the high end brand.
If your looking for a nice mid level surround system, you could do much worse than a Revel/Infinity/JBL mismatch system. Trust me, I stayed at a Holiday Inn Express!
"TarHeel" I would have said the same thing (word for word) I choose to take advantage on that "scenario :wink5: with the (Beta line) 50s front 20s Sr 360s center...because it was simple "Common sense" after looking an listening to both the Revels and the Beta grills on grills off!! and rapping with the sales man a lil'bit... I didn't get into the metrics of "why and "how come??!! I just take me a great (deal) on the Infinity Beta line these are some beautiful speakers even if though the Revels supposed to be better speaker.

even the best of audiophiles would be having second thoughts after looking an listening to the JBL's, Revels, & Beta's in the same listen session at the same location.:idea: