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Thread: After The Fall

  1. #1
    Senior Member Ducatista47's Avatar
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    After The Fall

    I know better than to ask for information or opinions about a future event, but here is an exception.

    In another thread I mused about a small time application for classic JBL cone transducers after the apparently expected end of cone kit availability. My question is, what do YOU think will happen and what would you personally do if/when factory cone kits are NLA (No Longer Available)? Do you think quality third party suppliers would emerge? What would you do if they do not?

    The application I suggested, while not common, would have the advantage of rendering the classic transducers the equal of the best contemporary offerings for that particular application. I mention this in anticipation of a barrage of responses, welcome here for sure, telling us to get over it and buy the newer, better stuff.
    http://audioheritage.org/vbulletin/s...1&postcount=28

    I expect replacement diaphragms for compression drivers and tweeters are another question altogether.

    I might also ask how soon the great NLA might come to pass. Speculation and inside information welcome!

    I have often wondered if the numbers of the units out there (do we have all the speakers not already in landfills?) would be too small, in the great scheme of things, to interest any entrepreneurs offering high quality. We are all hoping for another Great Plains Audio, but is that realistic, especially with JBL, unlike Altec, still out there?

    Clark
    Information is not Knowledge; Knowledge is not Wisdom

  2. #2
    Obsolete
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ducatista47 View Post
    My question is, what do YOU think will happen
    My understanding is that no one really knows what is going to happen right now.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ducatista47 View Post
    I might also ask how soon the great NLA might come to pass. Speculation and inside information welcome!
    Unknown at this time.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ducatista47 View Post
    what would you personally do if/when factory cone kits are NLA (No Longer Available)?
    Buy Tannoy.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ducatista47 View Post
    Do you think quality third party suppliers would emerge?
    Possibly. More likely if there is money to be made. People cry and whine about the genuine JBL parts now so unless Walmart wants to come out with their own kits I think it would be a doomed enterprise.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ducatista47 View Post
    What would you do if they do not?
    Buy Tannoy. The only reason I buy JBL is because there is a JBL and because they continue to support their products. As kits have become NLA I have released the systems no longer supported. Yeah, it sucks but that's life.

    People who want to maintain specific systems tend to horde spare parts as time goes but. Something gets parted out on eBay or CL and someone might pick up a spare part or two.

  3. #3
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    Ducatista47: Yep, I see what you are talking about. Altec-Lansing is a prime example. We come that close to loosing it with Altec. As an example, over the years JBL has dropped the of their 075/076/077 tweeters.

    So if you're concerned about recone kits and diaphrams etc, maybe you should stock a few extra parts. I know its costs money, but you will have the security that your drivers will always be functioning with OEM parts.

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    Administrator Mr. Widget's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 4313B View Post
    Buy Tannoy.


    Well, maybe in some instances... In general, I'd say you are better off buying extras and hoping you wear out before they do.

    Then again, there is always TAD... no, actually not. They are making their product NLA as fast as JBL is.


    Widget

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Widget View Post
    In general, I'd say you are better off buying extras and hoping you wear out before they do.
    That's a fact!

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    Just jettison that old stuff and move into the 21st Century (or at least the late 20th).
    In.

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    Administrator Robh3606's Avatar
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    Just jettison that old stuff and move into the 21st Century (or at least the late 20th).
    Ah Fooey!

    Where's fun in that, just get some spares while you can.

    Rob

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    Quote Originally Posted by Robh3606 View Post
    Ah Fooey!

    Where's fun in that, just get some spares while you can.

    Rob
    Yeah, I know it's sacrilege to some. I'd just like people to open up a bit, so I goad them toward the present.

    In the end, to each his own.
    In.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Titanium Dome View Post
    In the end, to each his own.
    If ya' ever come across another one of those almost "unobtanium" PC600's, do drop me a line...

    John

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    Senior Member Ian Mackenzie's Avatar
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    There is a guy over here who specialises in rebuilding vintage Tannoy's. People send him drivers from all over the world. Maybe that will be a JBL trend in another 15, 20 or 30 years.

    I mean as long as we have ears there will always be an outfit that makes dustcaps, spiders and surrounds and cones. It might not be exactly the same but I have seen damn fine incarnations of drivers that were otherwise goners. .

    Pity JBL did not introduce the 1500A type surrounds somewhat earlier.

    As for us I think we are done with the battle of the vintage clones / upgrades and it might be time for some of us to move on while we can still appreciate it.

    Ian

  11. #11
    Senior Member pos's Avatar
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    But does JBL make many of its cone kit internally?
    I mean, if they have suppliers like Hawley or Mogami, what would stop those suppliers to sell these kits directly, after JBL stops to support them?
    Would there be legal issues?
    No loudspeaker system even approaches real life so there is plenty of room for interpretation - Greg Timbers

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    Aftermarket to the rescue

    Quote Originally Posted by pos View Post
    But does JBL make many of its cone kit internally?
    I mean, if they have suppliers like Hawley or Mogami, what would stop those suppliers to sell these kits directly, after JBL stops to support them?
    Would there be legal issues?
    Yes, I think you've got it. In the auto industry, suppliers typically buy out the rights, prints to "reman" old parts. Sometimes they even buy the old machinery. That's how you see all the cars from the 30s up driving around. With todays digital machinery, it suddenly becomes much easier - and the parts are often better! In the extreme, Rover, in GB (I think), bought the rights from GM and is still manufacturing the old Buick 215 aluminum V-8 from the 60s for current use! And, they wouldn't have to make every single model - a lot of that stuff evolved to a final form. I just try to keep my stuff in good shape - always use JBL recones, etc. That stuff lasts a long time. Mike

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by pos View Post
    But does JBL make many of its cone kit internally?
    That's a good question. JBL doesn't make much of anything themselves any more. That sad fact was brought up again just last week while interviewing suppliers. It is a very sad state of affairs for people like us. But sentimentality and nostalgia don't pay the bills so ever onward.
    Quote Originally Posted by pos View Post
    I mean, if they have suppliers like Hawley or Mogami, what would stop those suppliers to sell these kits directly, after JBL stops to support them?
    I think the only thing that would stop them would be the inability to make money doing it. If they can make money doing it then it's probably feasible.
    Quote Originally Posted by Mannermusic View Post
    That's how you see all the cars from the 30s up driving around.
    Did you hear about the Model T get together the other day on NPR? I guess people from all over the world brought their early Fords to the USA for some get together.

    ***

    Oh, no wonder!

    This year is the 100th anniversary of perhaps the most famous car ever made. The first Ford Model T — also known as the Tin Lizzie — rolled out of Detroit in 1908. It put America on wheels and helped forge a manufacturing revolution.

    The first production Model T was assembled in 1908, the last in 1927.
    Last edited by 4313B; 07-28-2008 at 07:01 AM. Reason: Searched Model T on the Internet

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    Administrator Mr. Widget's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 4313B View Post
    This year is the 100th anniversary of perhaps the most famous car ever made. The first Ford Model T — also known as the Tin Lizzie — rolled out of Detroit in 1908. It put America on wheels and helped forge a manufacturing revolution.
    Not only did it put America on wheels and help forge a manufacturing revolution, that mass production revolution helped launch America to it's position as the dominant force it was to become... but we changed our minds and decided that we'd rather not make things anymore. Now we'll let China have their turn at world dominance.

    Not really off topic... the inevitable fall of JBL as we know it is an integral part of this new plan.

    As for other vendors building OEM equivalent parts, as long as there is enough demand and the original manufacturing data is available it should be feasible. We seem to be nearing a cross roads. Perhaps some of the forward thinking technical staff at JBL could load a hard drive with the relevant data before Harman crushes it like they did with the Studer replacement parts and GM did with their electric cars.


    Widget

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    Senior Member Ducatista47's Avatar
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    Indeed, Mr Widget. One of my favorite companies was Suntour, a designer and manufacturer of bicycle components. I preferred their parts when I had the choice. Some history: Suntour (Maeda Industries) was at the very forefront of the Japanese Miracle as that small country enjoyed phenomenal success (from about the middle 1960s through the end of the 1980s) in a host of fields from cars to computers, from fashion to bicycles. From strong engineering and creative design, Suntour's innovative slant parallelogram derailleur body gave them the recognition and grudging respect to open a door to European and American sales.
    Cobbled together from a series of subcontractors and partners in the Kansai (Osaka-Kobe) area, Suntour was always quite small compared to its giant competitor, Shimano, but earned an outsized reputation in an era when Japanese design led the industry.

    Here is a quote from http://www.sheldonbrown.com/suntour.html

    "Suntour stopped producing components in March of 1995. The name was bought by SR, but the component designs did not survive."

    That is because part of the deal was the complete destruction of all their tooling. From this great page http://www.hadland.me.uk/page35.htm, a full history. "SR SunTour owned the name "SunTour" but they did not own SunTour's patents, intellectual property, or the rights to any of the pre-1995 designs. Various people tried to buy the tooling for SunTour Superbe Pro components, but Mori sold the tooling for scrap."

    At this point, consider this a cautionary tale.

    Clark
    Information is not Knowledge; Knowledge is not Wisdom

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