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Pricing for speakers - whats perfect

Hari Iyer

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#1
I always have wondered this. What should be the perfect price for a speaker (cost + margins + overheads + commissions)? I know that the perfect price is one the buyer is willing to pay. But will like to hear from FMs about their views. I am looking at a decent sounding Bookshelf or a Floor stander speaker in a typical living room. Not a audiophile speaker.
 
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firearm12

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#2
I think price for any product depends heavily on supply/demand. More the demand, more the sale, more the production and more cheaper the manufacturing can be as it's high volume. So even low margins are fruitful for manufacturers and dealers because of high sales. Say a 50k bike has a wealth of engineering brains behind it while a 50k speaker will just have a box and couple of drivers, still it's 50k. Let's say a company A prices a bookshelf speaker at 20k and another company B prices the same kind of speaker with same specs at 2lacs. I don't think the manufacturing cost will actually differ so much between the two speakers unless one uses gold and diamonds, companies price the products/margins according to sale volumes and also according to the brand names. human psychology costly is better, everyone wants a niche product.

Having said all this, while buying new speakers, i think you can get a world class bookshelf speaker in under 50k if you search extensively, my picks for are castle knight 2, quad s series, Dali option series, Boston acoustics (underrated). Whenever shopping for speakers or anything, I always avoid entry level series, just go one series above entry level and I am done.

For what's the perfect price, I think the real production cost is never more than 50% of the mrp, rest is marketing, margins, overheads etc. That's the max for low priced category, for some products it can go even as low as 20% or even less, it will go down as mrp gets higher
 

keith_correa

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#3
I think the Andrew Jones designed Pioneer speakers are bargain priced. Both BS & FS speakers are hugely underrated, IMO!
 

Kannan

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#6
I don't think there is any kind of thumb rule as such in pricing of speakers in India.
Most often it is inflated, the entire sector is disorganized with under cutting etc.
 

Kannan

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#8
I know a couple of importers in Chennai of some premium speakers who have a distribution network but also sell through agents by under cutting.
 

elangoas

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#9
I always have wondered this. What should be the perfect price for a speaker (cost + margins + overheads + commissions)? I know that the perfect price is one the buyer is willing to pay. But will like to hear from FMs about their views. I am looking at a decent sounding Bookshelf or a Floor stander speaker in a typical living room. Not a audiophile speaker.
You haven't mentioned your budget for BS / FS.. if it is on the lesser side, then consider Taga Harmony TAV series.. 5.0 speaker package.. <=20K, most bang for buck..

If you can spend more than 20K for a FS, then Taga Harmony Paltinum series.. Same for BS..

IMO, Taga Harmony is the most affordable brand (in India) for any budget..
 

rpmahale

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#10
I have auditioned Warfdale,AJ and Boston Acoustics extensively from bookshelf to big floor standing speakers and they all are reasonably priced. Few of them are certainly better than Polk, Dali, Elac etc in direct comparison and Paradigm, Monitor Audio,KEF, Klispch etc in value for money comparison.These speakers are heavily underrated due to low price. Build quality is at par with that of double costing speakers and performance way better in some cases and at par with others. Warfdale Diamond 230/225/220/ Boston Acoustics A360/A26 and AJ FS52/BS22 are some of the example. They may not have handsome look but certainly have a performance that put smile on owners face. They may lack in certain area of audio spectrum which normal ( non audiophile) user may not care but can entertain him for longer periods.
 
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heliumflight

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#11
I feel the country where the speaker is made in, dictates the price. This is because of labour cost. Ex: We know that Switzerland is a country where everything is expensive- watches, chocolates, tourism & Piega Speakers :)

HiFi Rig: Cambridge Audio Cxn > Musical Fidelity X10 V3 + Quad 405 MK2 + Piega Classic 3.0
 

firearm12

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#12
If you like to listen to old songs, poor recordings and like woody textured kind of bass and sound, warm speakers like wharfedale and quad will fit in, if you want more lively treble, transparent open and exciting sound, go for Dali. Boston's sound heavy on bass and bass texture is paper like.I have a Boston acoustics a26 and I rreally like the way they handle old Bollywood songs, they sound heavy like floor standers but they are not too dynamic. I haven't listened to AJ. Any case, keep in mind that warm speakers do sound dull and unexciting at first, but once you like them it's nothing like them for long listening sessions. If you like live kind of sound, go for more transparent and dynamic speaker like Dali,
 

square_wave

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#13
There are 2 parts to your question.

1. What should be the perfect price for a speaker ?

The perfect price one is willing to pay depends upon the value proposition for the specific buyer. Meaning, it depends upon the expectations of the buyer and what is available in the market that fulfils those expectations and their price points. Then budget and brand value comes into play and people generally play around with pros and cons of going up or down in the budget and then takes a decision. So there is no perfect price that applies to everyone.

2. I am looking at a decent sounding Bookshelf or a Floor stander speaker in a typical living room. Not a audiophile speaker.

If you can define “decent” little more and publish the expectations and budget, people can suggest speakers.
 

sound_cycle

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#14
I always have wondered this. What should be the perfect price for a speaker (cost + margins + overheads + commissions)? I know that the perfect price is one the buyer is willing to pay. But will like to hear from FMs about their views. I am looking at a decent sounding Bookshelf or a Floor stander speaker in a typical living room. Not a audiophile speaker.
Transducers are likely (should be ??) to be about 30 - 40 % of a typical/ ideal budget. So what is typical ideal budget ? numbers for a system would be say PC: 0.35K, DAC: 30K int amp : 50K , odds and ends 10K 1.2 L so far. All that remains is to solve for x in 0. 7 x = 1,20,000 :) (and I'd rather it were all costs including customs on CIF)

ciao
gr
 

prem

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#16
If you were to make a single driver speaker with a Lowther in a back loaded horn, it will cost you upwards of 2 lakhs. If there’s a dealer in between, I guess a 6 lakhs selling price is fine. The manufacturer would keep around 2 lakhs, the dealer margin plus taxes will add another 2 lakhs to the cost
 

Hari Iyer

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#17
If you were to make a single driver speaker with a Lowther in a back loaded horn, it will cost you upwards of 2 lakhs. If there’s a dealer in between, I guess a 6 lakhs selling price is fine. The manufacturer would keep around 2 lakhs, the dealer margin plus taxes will add another 2 lakhs to the cost
Yes this sounds perfect and agrees to my costing too. Price = cost * 2 if directly sold and if sold with bill and commissions then 3x.. Anything beyond or lower is cheating either parties.
 
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#18
There are 2 parts to your question.

1. What should be the perfect price for a speaker ?

The perfect price one is willing to pay depends upon the value proposition for the specific buyer. Meaning, it depends upon the expectations of the buyer and what is available in the market that fulfils those expectations and their price points. Then budget and brand value comes into play and people generally play around with pros and cons of going up or down in the budget and then takes a decision. So there is no perfect price that applies to everyone.

2. I am looking at a decent sounding Bookshelf or a Floor stander speaker in a typical living room. Not a audiophile speaker.

If you can define “decent” little more and publish the expectations and budget, people can suggest speakers.
Why dont you go through a diy route?It is better you can save a lot.
 
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#19
I always have wondered this. What should be the perfect price for a speaker (cost + margins + overheads + commissions)?
I don't know if one can call it perfect, but generally a Good pricing will have 40-50% of the pricing attributed towards the Actual cost of making the product.
Actual cost includes; Price of Components used, Labour costs involved, any Procurement, Manufacturing, R&D, Supply chain and Commercial Overheads, Manufacturer Margin)
The Remaining 50% make up the costs incurred in Logistics and Transportation, Distributor and Dealer Margins, Taxes and Duties, Warranty overhead and Insurance overheads)

However depending on the Target segment of the Brand all these things will have a huge variance. A Budget, mass market brand like Taga or Wharfdale usually have cut throat pricing - so you can expect cost cutting on many fronts (right from standard designs to minimal R&D to packaging). The Economies of Scale make great impact here and the related stakeholders gain profit by pushing out large volumes of speakers. However these brands rely on having huge Distribution, n number of dealers and periodic advertisements to make their sale. Usually, lower - medium brands have high % of Dealer margins. This is not only applicable to speakers, from consumer electronics to apparel and retail, any trade that relies on volumes, will have high % of Dealer margins.

A boutique audio brand like say a Joseph Audio or Ayon Audio usually have heavy cost in the first place. Simply cos some use exotic materials some ship components from one end of the world to other end just cos they cannot compromise on quality, some might have invested decades and decades of R&D in their design, some may choose to build speakers in their land, where labour costs are very high. If you notice most of these brands do not go after high advertisements or offers, and relay on Exhibitions / audio shows, because their target segment is limited. From what i have seen, purely from % scenario, dealers of these brands have less % as margins. Also, dealers for such brands have some pre-requisites, like listening rooms, dedicated HT that are mandated by the brand itself. So technically the dealer has to absorb these costs somewhere !!

At the end of the day Dealers earn their bread by different means, some make $$$ by pushing x10 some make $$$ by pushing 2.

It takes 13 months to build a Rolls Royce and one Toyota leaves the Factory every 13 min. The Rolls is ~10Cr and the base Toyota is ~8L. I would say both of them are perfectly priced, since both do pretty well in terms of their balance sheets :)
 

Hari Iyer

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#20
Why dont you go through a diy route?It is better you can save a lot.
Initially DIY can be expensive as there is a lot of learning curve involved. Unless you are keen to built for others too, investment in tools and effort will not make much sense imo.
 
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