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Build cost of headphones/speakers
HTS
post Aug 27 2012, 01:00
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I just found out that the left and right cups of the Sennheiser HD600 cost 120 dollars a pair. Sennheiser sells them to anyone who wants them. I don't know what's preventing people from building their own HD600s for less than half of the street price.

Anyhow, it makes me wonder how much the HD800 drivers cost since they are selling them for 1500.

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extrabigmehdi
post Aug 27 2012, 01:13
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QUOTE (HTS @ Aug 27 2012, 00:00) *
I don't know what's preventing people from building their own HD600s for less than half of the street price.

Do it if you can ! Don't forget that the sound doesn't depend only on driver, but their placement, resonance in the cups...
Even the ear pads can have an impact.

QUOTE
Anyhow, it makes me wonder how much the HD800 drivers cost since they are selling them for 1500.

Sennheiser is just splitting the whole cost of headphone in every part they sell (in fact that's more expensive).
I doubt the real cost of every parts exceed 500$, but they are here to make money.
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DVDdoug
post Aug 27 2012, 19:25
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QUOTE
I just found out that the left and right cups of the Sennheiser HD600 cost 120 dollars a pair.
Does that include the driver?

QUOTE
...since they are selling them for 1500.
There is a huge mark-up (gross profit) in audiophile equipment. Audiophiles (at least the people who buy "audiophile" equipment) are NOT bargain hunters... In this market, a higher price makes the product more desirable! You can't blame the manufacturers for taking advantage of this psychology and giving their customers what they want. But in the end, there isn't that much net profit when you are manufacturing, distributing, and selling in small quantities.

Typically, if you buy "replacement parts", you'll pay more for a complete "'kit" of parts than you'll pay for the assembled & packaged retail product. Perhaps in this case it's a different story and you can assemble it yourself for less...???

But for the manufacturer buying parts & materials in bulk, the parts cost is a small part of the overall product cost, and an even smaller part of the price. wink.gif

For the manufacturer, there are material costs, labor costs, overhead, and profit. You might be surprised how much the overhead adds up. I work for a small manufacturer (~10 employees). Only 2 of us are direct manufacturing labor, and everybody else (including the highest paid employees) is indirect (overhead)... We've got Engineering, Management, Accounting, Sales, Purchasing and Materials. Plus you've got rent, utilities, computers & software, manufacturing tools & equipment, taxes, insurance, lawyers, and all kinds of other overhead expenses....
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HTS
post Sep 18 2012, 03:33
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QUOTE (DVDdoug @ Aug 27 2012, 14:25) *
QUOTE
I just found out that the left and right cups of the Sennheiser HD600 cost 120 dollars a pair.
Does that include the driver?
Actually it was 120 for a pair of drivers.

QUOTE
Typically, if you buy "replacement parts", you'll pay more for a complete "'kit" of parts than you'll pay for the assembled & packaged retail product. Perhaps in this case it's a different story and you can assemble it yourself for less...???
Here is the crux of the situation. The "foams" cost 50 dollars a pair, but you can make those out of upholstery filling they sell at home-improvement stores. The same with everything else (other than the cable). So yes buying a complete kit may cost more, but you don't need their shoddy accessories. In fact, their headbands, housing etc... are so poorly made that the fake marble paint is well worn off. Therefore all you really need are the drivers, the cable, and maybe the housing. That would amount to less than 200, and your own substitute materials are definitely going to be STRONGER than their official junk.

About the audiophile bit, the reason I started the thread is to point out that they are NOT even providing the "audiophile" level of service for the price. Their flagship HD800 is just as poorly made as their 20 dollar earbuds, and ALL of their products carry a 2 year warranty. Just search around for complaints regarding the build quality of the HD800, I saw a pair in a store and the plastic looks even cheaper than the HD600's. The store put the display model inside a display case (other headphones were hanging off a wall) probably they saw it was deteriorating under their very eyes. Finally, my initinal point about building one yourself stands. What is their brand/intellectual property worth if they freely sell EVERY SINGLE component to anyone to assemble their own "audiophile" grade equipment?

At least the monster cables are of high build quality and carry lifetime warranties.

QUOTE
Do it if you can ! Don't forget that the sound doesn't depend only on driver, but their placement, resonance in the cups...
For headphones like their active noise cancelling series this may be true, but for the generic designs like the HD600, once you open it up you will see how simple the "housing" is.


Besides, headphones like the AKG K1000 are pretty much just strapping two speakers to your ears. Very little housing to speak of.
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