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#51471 - 07/05/04 09:58 AM Why So Expensive?
ACE Offline
frequent flier

Registered: 05/16/04
Posts: 10
I understand that in audio there is a lot of high pricing solely for the purpose of making people think it must be better, but I just cannot understand how these small bookshelf speakers I see with a 7" woofer and a dome tweeter are going for $1800-$3000. What can possibly justify those prices? A box, two drivers and a crossover. I don't see it.

#51472 - 07/05/04 10:41 AM Re: Why So Expensive?
mhorgel Offline

Registered: 10/02/03
Posts: 438
Loc: Louisville, KY
Neither do we. That's why we buy Axioms, whose most expensive bookshelf speakers are $400/pair.
"Shoot, a fella could have a pretty good weekend in Vegas with all that stuff"

#51473 - 07/05/04 11:03 AM Re: Why So Expensive?
BBIBH Offline

Registered: 01/10/02
Posts: 1255
Loc: Canada
This is a well discussed topic, and of course on this board, the central topic is Axiom value position.

But this is no different than that of a $20k car and a $150k car. To be sure, the brand has something to do with the cost. As would the engineering, quality of components, etc.

We need to remember that all people are different (both in tastes, financial situation, needs, wants, etc) and that is the reason we have choices. It would be pretty boring if there was only ONE choice for speakers, amps, sources, cars, etc...

Does all this equate to a better product? Not necessarily. I would caution of ruling out high priced pieces solely on the price tag alone. Use them to listen and learn. You will find good and bad in every price segment, but the value to you is the experience of defining your interest and is really a piece of the spirit of the hobby of audio!


#51474 - 07/05/04 09:05 PM Re: Why So Expensive?
mobomofo Offline

Registered: 06/25/04
Posts: 27
Loc: Maine


#51475 - 07/06/04 02:40 PM Re: Why So Expensive?
jbmjr Offline
frequent flier

Registered: 03/07/04
Posts: 19
You forgot the main reason why businesses exist: PROFIT. The more, the better.

#51476 - 07/06/04 03:17 PM Re: Why So Expensive?
Capn_Pickard Offline

Registered: 03/09/04
Posts: 1056
Loc: Arlington, VA (NOVA)
also - to reiterate and amplify a sentiment above:

Higher price often implies higher quality/better sound.

Take for example wines. Most of us are not coinnesuers (sp?) of wine. Considering how many wines are available to us, it makes if very difficult to decide what wine to buy when you go to your local mega-mart. Wine companies take advantage of this fact. They acknowledge that, by and large, the consumer doesn't know a good bottle or a bad bottle of wine (unless given the chance to taste it). So, what do they do? They mark up their wines so that people will believe that the fermented goodness inside is of a higher quality. Most imbibers will likely tell you that their favorite bottle is not the most expensive. So, why do the more expensive bottles sell? (1) Because unwitting consumers confuse price with quality. (2) Because a higher price imparts a certain intangible prestige factor. And (3) Because when you spend more a wine (especially) you're more likely to think that it will taste better (psycho-acoustic wine tasting).

Applied to audio ---

Certain companies likely jack up their prices to trick unwitting consumers (1) with a lot of money, (2) with an unwillingness to shop aroudn or research, (3) with a desire to impress others, or (4) who seek to impress others or believe that the speakers they bought sound better because they paid more for them (actual psycho-acoustic phenomenon)

On many occasions, consumers don't like to buyt the cheapest item on the shelf. Cheapness makes people think that the items that they are buying are, well, cheap. Pricing an item more expensively may actually help to fool some people into believing that the item is of a higher quality. I suspect that this at play as much as anything else.

#51477 - 07/06/04 07:30 PM Re: Why So Expensive?
mobomofo Offline

Registered: 06/25/04
Posts: 27
Loc: Maine
Not all high-priced speakers are nessessarily the same as everything else, either.

I think it's wrong to assume that Axioms are simply underpriced versions of these speakers. Granted, they may compete with some, but it was evident in another thread that Axiom's flagship bookshelf cannot produce the same sound as other flagship bookshelves from other companies.

Yes, a portion of it is marketing... but there are instances where it's not... and some people need to recognize this.

It all boils down to how much sound is worth it to you. For some, $100 speakers are all they need. For me, $100 speakers tend to lack warmth and a detailed mid-range. I appreciate a well-reproduced stereo image... if that means shelling out $1500 to do so, I don't mind... so long as whatever is better than that is financially unachievable.

I haven't heard the Axiom's yet, but I intend to buy a pair and audition them. If it means I can buy an entire home theater setup for under $2000 and be happy, so be it!

#51478 - 07/06/04 11:58 PM Re: Why So Expensive?
BigWill Offline

Registered: 05/01/03
Posts: 1951
Loc: Corona, Calif. USA!!!
Two-buck-Chuck shiraz won double gold at the recent NY wine tasting event. Apparently the judges are quite embarassed.

#51479 - 07/07/04 01:25 AM Re: Why So Expensive?
pmbuko Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 04/02/03
Posts: 16437
Loc: Ben Lomond, California
Remember those Folgers Crystals commercials in the 80s?

We've secretly replaced this wine connoiseur's $150 beverage with Charles Shaw Shiraz. Let's see if he can tell the difference...

That's amazing.
I can explain it to you but I can't understand it for you.

#51480 - 07/07/04 09:24 AM Re: Why So Expensive?
bigjohn Offline

Registered: 01/21/04
Posts: 3016
Loc: San Angelo, TX
they could be serving me welch's grape juice for all i know.. i am not a wine drinker. although, a few years back we went to a fancy restaurant in san antonio that used a lot of wine in its sauces, and by the end of the meal, i had a pretty good buzz..


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