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Sennheiser HD 800 - price control? - Page 4

post #46 of 147
Working retail, I've found that Sennheiser does have some annoying price control on their items... Such as my work computer not allowing me to sell certain headphones for less than MSRP, but they're not quite as bad as Apple. The computers don't stop us from lowering the price of their products, but if we do, we get a rather unpleasant letter from Apple.

Bose has no such policy. I could sell QC3s for $5 and the only thing I'd have to worry about is district management getting pissed off for killing margins... Well, I'd probably get my ass fired, but no such threats or warnings from Bose.
post #47 of 147
Great post......But, just like in new HI-FI equipment you start to see that old "Trickle Down" $$$$ to lesser models....I see, so far with the outstanding HD800 a "Trickle Up" trend! Did they see the market $$ for their HD 650 tappering off or are THEY, "keeping up with the Jones", per say?? (the Jones being grado, AKG etc.etc.) "They want to take us higher" I say Bring it to "US"
post #48 of 147
Although the HD800 does sound great, I personally think the build quality is not as great as many have chimed here.

First off, no plastic and microfiber cloth worth $1399, IMO.

Then we have the squeeky headband. Try twisting them and you'll know what I mean.

If the HD800 were made with aluminum, lambskin leather headbands and pads padded with memory foams, 7N silver/copper wires and self-adjusting headbands like the AKG, I'd gladly pay the $1399.
post #49 of 147
Quote:
Originally Posted by xkRoWx View Post
Although the HD800 does sound great, I personally think the build quality is not as great as many have chimed here.

First off, no plastic and microfiber cloth worth $1399, IMO.

Then we have the squeeky headband. Try twisting them and you'll know what I mean.

If the HD800 were made with aluminum, lambskin leather headbands and pads padded with memory foams, 7N silver/copper wires and self-adjusting headbands like the AKG, I'd gladly pay the $1399.
Not to single you out, but there's been this weird sense of entitlement here with the HD-800.

If it doesn't meet someone's expectations, then there's all sorts of heat and noise about how awful Sennheiser is.

The bottom line is that you don't have to buy what you don't want. Further, there are lots of other headphones that should meet your desires. So buy one of those instead. Sennheiser did not set out to make the HD-800 a headphone that meets every taste and every need.

For me, the HD-800 works and does its intended job. I think the price is fair and I am satisfied with the build quality. It gets daily use and has held up as well as anything I own. It still looks like new and I'm happy with the bass.

If the HD-800 isn't what you want, then buy something else. I don't go into threads for headphones I dislike and whine about them. Before Acix jumps in, I hated the K-701, but I actually owned them for well over a year and gave them a chance. If someone asks for an opinion, I tell them what I think.
post #50 of 147
Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Erik View Post
I have both headphones and prefer the feel of HD-800.

Most people have a bias that tells them that plastic is "cheap." I believe that you should use the best material for the job. Anything else is jewelry.
So you would be happy to buy a $1400 Plastic watch.
post #51 of 147
So you would gladly pay $1000 extra for a metal watch that is just not as accurate?

When I had it on my head, I think it felt solid, fits very comfortably and sounded great. It'd be worth €1000 to me, if I could miss the money I'd buy it. Never once did I think 'oh man, why is it not metal'.
post #52 of 147
Quote:
Originally Posted by ford2 View Post
So you would be happy to buy a $1400 Plastic watch.
I think you missed the point of his post.
post #53 of 147
A plastic watch for 1400$? Odd, but when it has a nice calibre from Patek inside... I've seen the HD800-drivers, they're perfectly crafted and you don't have to be an engineer to see the difference to "normal" drivers.

I would have preferred metal because it has unique characteristics in comparison to plastic.
But they didn't want to use metal because it has difficult to handle "oscillation problems" - I would have insulated the drivers from the outer shell and don't even think that it's really an issue but Sennheiser has it's own laboratory to measure these charasterics - other headphone-manufacturers just don't care.

It's precisely made and they use metal were it doesn't seem to affect sound: the metal mesh, the military-grade plugs, the headband (covered in damping plastic), joints... When I look at the cables and plugs from Grado. Ultrasone, Stax, Denon... in comparison...
I don't know if there are many headphones that can hold up against it's build-quality, i'll just bought an used Omega II, I will report ;-)

Microfibre is about as pricey as regular Chinese-made leather...
Just look at Ekornes-chairs, their microfibre-models are as expensive as the leather-versions.
post #54 of 147
Quote:
Originally Posted by Georgl View Post
but Sennheiser has it's own laboratory to measure these charasterics - other headphone-manufacturers just don't care.
This statement might be true for Grado, Bose, Skullcandy and the likes but Its totally wrong for Beyerdynamic, Ultrasone, Stax, AKG and possibly some others like Sony/Qualia.... These companies might not have the same measurement equipment (between them) but they surely have a properly set and serious r&d lab at the level or superior to Sennheiser.
post #55 of 147
Quote:
Originally Posted by GuyDebord View Post
This statement might be true for Grado, Bose, Skullcandy and the likes but Its totally wrong for Beyerdynamic, Ultrasone, Stax, AKG and possibly some others like Sony/Qualia.... These companies might not have the same measurement equipment (between them) but they surely have a properly set and serious r&d lab at the level or superior to Sennheiser.
I'm not an expert on all these companies but what you say is partially plain wrong - one just don't hear about it the efforts of Sennheiser. Don't get me wrong some of them have very good singles labs or something but there is a lot more to it. Sennheiser have more people just in research of headphone only related topics than most competitors have people involved in the entire headphone related chain. In fact I often to tell people when explaining about Sennheiser Communications and why their products are qualitative better than say Bose that they have more highly skilled people just at researching labs from Sennheiser and William Demant combined in researching into audiology topics than most other companys have staff in total related to audio including marketing, logistics etc. William Demant even spend a lot of money on research that isn't totally for gain of competitive advantage but for everyones healthcare, like advancements in training of audiologist, as they are own by a foundation for promotion of better hearing etc. And Sennheiser is known for its very strong global marketing and sales division despite some conservativeness - again due to importance B2B divisions.

What you can ague is the outcome but to say that anyone has near the research or resources that Sennheiser has is just silly. If some of the others had access to say mass production capabilities of their own speaker designs like Sennheiser does they would have been able to lower their prices on anything but the top models. HD202, 555 or MM50 for iPhone is good examples that competitors can't keep up with the overall performance for the low price segments so these sell like hot bread. On of the reasons Sennheiser still has a headphone division - the profit isn't in HD800 or that sort compared to R'n'D costs. Its something the Sennheiser family choose to let happen - just like the PC350 gaming headset I'm told was a long and hard struggle too as it wasn't expected to profitable (clearly before they really realized how much we wanted something better than the other poor headsets out there).

And it isn't going to end here - I've seen what coming out next year or the year after that and some of these products are defiantly made of the love for quality experiences at higher than most consumers would buy price points - the marketing guys just hope they will be the new HD800 or PC350 and at least regain some of their investments.
post #56 of 147
I'm sorry, with "OTHER headphone..." I meant not all but most.

I wouldn't overrate the size of the company, I don't think it makes much difference whether Beyerdynamic (300 people in HQ) or Sennheiser (1000) starts to develop and manufacture a headphone, as long as they real focus their resources. Maybe even the opposite is true, many "global-players" with dozens of fabs and thousands employees with a wide production programm and shareholders carefully watching their money might have a problem focusing on something non-mass-market compatible like high-end headphones. Or they do a good job but some economics ruin their work by cost cutting!?

But many high-end-companies are simply too small to make such major developments as the HD800 or doing R&D on this level - Stax has merely 30 employees at all! But I bought an Omega anyway, because I like electrostats and know what such small companies can be capable when the really want to create a new reference - despite their limitations. But I wouldn't be too surprised if it doesn't match the HD800 or T1.
post #57 of 147
If we turned all of Sennheiser's employees into slaves the HD800 would, in my estimates, cost at most $200 delivered to your door by your slave mailman. This price takes into consideration material cost, research and labor time, and food and shelter for your slaves. As this thread points out, modern economics is incorrigibly flawed. How dare Sennheiser make a profit? It is time to bring back the institution of slavery and put everyone in their place. Who's with me?
post #58 of 147
Why not just find something in the middle of the extremes of "material cost sale price" and "extremely overpriced sale price"?

I don't know if i'm with anyone or against anyone, but having missed out on a few years updates from Sennheiser, i'm awfully dissappointed with these days.
It's the design! The new series they have introduced really lack quality IMO. The only thing that put me off HD380 for a gift was their flimsy appearance and generally just "meh" design. It even felt flimsy.
This also applies to the rest of the lately introduced headphones, when it comes to appearance.
They discontinued the HD250II - are they out of their minds? It looked professional and sounded like a studio headphone ought to. It's a good headphone.
The build quality of the HD650 headband is bad - paint is chipping off mine and other's, and it's out of warranty.
If this was really one of their premium products, why not supply it with a longer warranty to show that it's supposed to be better. I don't give much for the so-called R&D when the warranty service period is that short and that they don't stress test their product taking a few samples for QC now and then.
And again, it's plastic. Painted plastic. I sure hope the HD800 is not coated/painted.

Bring back the HD250, HD520, 540, 560, 450 and 480 designs and constructions and i'd happily buy a new one
post #59 of 147
The HD800 is made by specialized suppliers, most of them located in Germany and assembled (+driver production) in their HQ in Wedemark - the other headphones "from Sennheiser" are not made by these suppliers, most of them are made by chinese OEM, a friend of mine broke three headsets (PC-Series, each cost over 100€) within one week! These are not real Sennheiser-products!
post #60 of 147
Great to hear that the money are flowing in that direction at least and not some random cheap OEM overseas.
I thought they moved their premium/professional (HD580, 600, 650, 25, 250, 280) headphones production to Ireland in 1998 or so, and that the aviation/broadcasting headsets were completed in Germany, since the production of all microphones takes place there. Or the better ones at least.
You're right, there are many Sennheiser headphones which are only there to sell by recognition - not that they all sound bad per se.
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