Goldmund’s Blu-ray player, real deal or scam?
You may have heard by now about the Goldmund Eidos BD20 Blu-ray player. It is the very first ultra-high-end high-def player on the market at nearly $17,000. (Meredian promised a high-end HD DVD player last year at CES but failed to deliver.)
From praised Swiss audiophile manufacturer Goldmund, this player is said to have all the features that made their Eidos 20 DVD player famous (you know, in the small world of luxury audiophilia), including the AC-Curator power supply, and a Magnetic Damper as well as the solid, yet subtle chassis.
But what makes it so amazing? They receive OEM parts from Japanese manufacturers (most likely Sony or Pioneer) and then install it in the chassis, test everything, replace parts for higher-quality and durability, and then mark it up 3,000%. While I agree that even digital signals can be improved upon with higher quality materials and craftsmanship, there is a point of diminished returns. If you double the cost of low-end an A/V product, you get maybe 20% improved picture and audio. If you double it again, you might get 10% above that. Again and you might receive 5%. Just follow this pattern.
But even this equation doesn’t always work. Take Oppo for example. Their $399 DVD player may be 20% better than their $169 player, but that $169 player is every bit as good as some $799 DVD players from a high-end company.
We’re also seeing speakers coming out of China, like PSB and Usher, which are matching the quality of speakers from Canada and the U.K. that are 400% more costly.
The beauty of the luxury goods market is they only have to sell one player to make a return on their investment. Sell two and you’re golden. It may be a scam, but if you have the money to invest you may just find yourself with fewer friends (but they’ll all be of the highest quality).