An Interview with Von Schweikert Audio's Chief Design Officer Leif Swanson

Damon Von Schweikert

[Industry Expert]
Sep 15, 2016
48
99
105
California
www.vonschweikert.com
This week's episode of The Audio Analyst by Greg Weaver is an in-depth interview with our very own Chief Design Officer, Leif Swanson where they discuss numerous topics including our proprietary G.A.I.N. and A.I.R. networks as well as the past, present and future of Von Schweikert Audio. We hope you find it interesting, enjoy!

 

SeagoatLeo

Well-Known Member
Feb 24, 2015
39
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213
Hearing the Ultra 11s, my wife got emotional and I was stunned, using my LPs and CD. The Ultra 9 would be my ultimate speaker for my custom listening room. I don't feel that the current line of VS speakers are underpriced, just that most high end speakers are OVERPRICED for their sound. The most immersive sounding speakers I've heard have been omnidirectionals but with substantial caveats. VS speakers are the closest to them without the caveats. I hate beaming speakers and will never own electrostats again (my wife told me to get rid of the Martin Logan Monolith IIIs decades ago and she was right).

My question is whether Evolution Acoustics copied some or much of the VS technology in their speakers? Their owner or designer is reportedly a former VS engineer. I have not heard the EA speakers yet so I don't know how they sound or compare.

P.S. I heard early Wilson "SOTA" speakers at Christopher Hansen Ltd, Beverly Hills salon back in the early 1990s and found them to be unlistenable, four or five stacked boxes, totally incoherent sound but very expensive with quite good equipment that I knew (maybe an early WAMM or even bigger speaker). VS made small, coherent speakers at a fraction of the cost at the same time.
 
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Damon Von Schweikert

[Industry Expert]
Sep 15, 2016
48
99
105
California
www.vonschweikert.com
We agree. We believe our pricing is appropriate which is factored primarily on the Cost of Goods. This was a common calculation in manufacturing for decades but not so much anymore. We agree that when you look at our competitors in the highest end of the market, they're clearly using a higher multiplier when scrutinizing their visible components. And I'm confident we use far more expensive internal components as well but take that with my bias.

And parts aren't everything. You can spend a great deal of money inefficiently and produce an inferior loudspeaker.

That's why we're such firm believers in the audition. And not just for the opinion of "influencers" but the people who matter most, the actual customers. Ultimately, that's all that should matter. So to that end, we've spent the bulk of our marketing budget brining our products to shows where the rooms are horrible but also where potential customers as well as interested observers can hear them and hopefully enjoy them.

And we've been fortunate to win a large number of awards. I don't think I'm being hyperbolic at all when I say we've won the most Best in Show awards in the last four years than any of our competitors, possibly combined. Certainly at the shows we've attended.

BUT, those "competitors' still get Product of the Year while only presenting auditions to select people and influencers in a permanent sound room with 6 to 12 months of setup. And IF they take them to a show, they set them up for static display.

We do not consider our pricing to be an apples to apples comparison to our competition and we hope others will take the chance to analyze that belief for themselves.

Thanks for the observations Leo, all the best!
 
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jeffrey_t

VIP/Donor
Jan 29, 2012
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535
So....I can buy your $30K speakers and add $5K of footers and the speaker will outperform your $60K speakers. Sign me up!

That's how you should be selling these footers, $25K of savings!
 

Leif S

Industry Expert
Feb 14, 2015
763
152
255
California
www.vonschweikert.com
So....I can buy your $30K speakers and add $5K of footers and the speaker will outperform your $60K speakers. Sign me up!

That's how you should be selling these footers, $25K of savings!
That is not exactly what I said lol. But the performance of the new speaker footers is incredible. I will be trying the new 1.0's under our $25k speaker soon. I will let you know our results.
 
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Damon Von Schweikert

[Industry Expert]
Sep 15, 2016
48
99
105
California
www.vonschweikert.com
So....I can buy your $30K speakers and add $5K of footers and the speaker will outperform your $60K speakers. Sign me up!

That's how you should be selling these footers, $25K of savings!
I would say that in some circumstances, that would be the way to invest your budget. You should consider the upgrade and the system holistically with the goal of raising the performance of the weakest links to the highest level within your budget and in some situations that would be the play.
 
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Leif S

Industry Expert
Feb 14, 2015
763
152
255
California
www.vonschweikert.com
I think about the footers I put under $10k in electronics and then installed the Center Stage footers at a retail of $6k for all the components, beat my $30k amplifier and $30k preamp. That was a wise investment IMO.
 

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