Just wondering what the HFGF community thinks about this…do companies that release their products under Drop lose face/credibility?..why not just do a “budget” version of their own line?..Still trying to get my head around the whole Drop thing
They’re a mixed bag for sure. Some of their exclusive products - 6xx, 4xx, 95x, Elex, TH/R-X00 series, 789, just to name a few - have been solid additions to the audiophile community and have often disrupted the market for the better. They also make it more cost-effective to get hands on other gear that they haven’t branded. Recent examples there include the SU-8, Darkvoice, and Tin Hi-Fi IEMs. But there is also a reason why Drop’s “Estimated Shipping Date” is more than a small joke. Why don’t manufacturers just make/sell the cheaper versions on their own? My guess is Drop’s model makes taking a risk on a product less than going it alone. Drop guarantees a floor of units they sell - I think*. My understanding is Drop buys the units and then sells them. So the original manufacturer gets a guaranteed sale out of that run. They’re not promised that on all of their product lines.
*It may not work this way on every Drop collaboration, but I think it does on some.
So there’s my non-answer to your question
Not really if you’re not US based?
I misremembered, ignore me.
I like Drop. Without then, I’d never have bought the 6XX, and I’d probably still be listening to crap-phones.
They opened up a wonderful world to my ears.
Are they flawless? No. But I’ve had good experiences with them overall.
I like drop but I do wonder sometimes, well why couldn’t the original creators develop this?
Probably the only manufacturer with a drop affiliation that I personally felt I missed out on being UK based was Fostex
Drop is just a line to a different set of customers for a lot of manufacturers, and that means an expanded customer base.
I would say for example the 58x and 6xx probably introduced a lot of people to Sennheiser as a brand.
I do think the majority of the audiophile offerings were a boon to the hobby in general, and most of them reasonably well thought out.
The shipping times and often marginal discounts have never bothered me, every drop I’ve been a part of has shipped eventually (and the worst were custom keycaps, not audio gear).
It’s much less interesting if your not in the US.
As to the original question, it is what it is.
they’re a blessing and a curse and I think it’s more blessing than curse.
the blessing is the products they’ve made available, under their name or collaborations. the curse portion is lousy customer service / warranty support. well, a second curse bit is that the discounts for mass purchases isn’t as good…they have lost their focus a bit. however, I suspect they’ve had to come up with their own products so they could offer discounts. 6xx for $220 vs 650 for $500? that’s a hella discount!
Overall drop is a good thing. Others have already listed the downsides (of which I agree with all of these) so I’ll point out some upsides.
The reason they can sell at a discount is (usually) the group buying aspect. If 100 people join a drop then that is 100 guaranteed buyers. This let’s them order what ever the product is in bulk at a lower price, resulting in a lower price for the end user. This also has the upside of letting them try to sell some less main stream things like mach keys stuff and outdoors stuff (sadly they have reduced the number of communities since the re brand). It’s safer to sell niche stuff if you first get people to basically preorder the product first.
Then there is the unified community aspect. People know that drop sells some niche things so there is likely a customer base for what ever that niche product is. Then the community can also help to remove marketing and what not. Sennhieser does not need to advertise the HD6XX or HD58X since drop takes care of that and the community does a lot of this for drop. All drop really has to do is pay for basic internet ads and send out review copies. The community takes care of the rest.
Then of course there is the strategy of “take a product and move production to China”.
“It’s like a bit of light and a touch of dark” had to LOL. Without the 6xx I would have never been drove back to audio the way I have been the last few years. The hobby is a blessing and a curse and by extension that website imo. Excuse,me while I start looking into pens now… SMH
For their audiophile community – I think they take products that wouldn’t hit a broader audience and deliver it to a broader audience. So, its a blessing. They are usually able to hit a certain price point that make the products accessible - and in very China fashion, sometimes to the detriment of QC. There have been some misses, but I think they’ve stumbled upon some really really good products that are staples of this little hobby at the entry level.
As for the rest of Drop/Massdrop…they used to be much better. For example, their selection of watches used to be pretty interesting. Now…its like walking into a TJ Maxxx. Just some mid that you can get for a better price elsewhere. They’ve also been shutting down some of their other communities - like style - that don’t get any traffic. The kitchen goods drops were good very early in its existence, but now also stink.
Im summary – I feel Drop’s success with the Audiophile community has been limited to that community and the rest of their offerings / collaborations (again, see some of Drops collabs with watches) legit stink.
I think Drop is great! I have bought many products that I ended up moving on, but I was happy to try them out. Our hobby is VERY niche and we need a retailer (Distributor?) that caters to us. I never go more than two days without checking their website. Most of it doesn’t appeal to me, but I love looking for that one cool item.
If you are an IEM person, Drop must be beyond awesome.
Also a great way for companies to get rid of outdated/excess inventory.
Still deeply in love with my Elex’s and really liking the E95X’s. I would not have paid $1,000.00 for the Koss E90 system or the $1,200.00 for the Clears.
They are a curse to me. Early on they used to ship to my country but suddenly stopped years ago. So, if I really want something from them I have to wait for it to pop up on the local amazon (very few products do) or pay WAY too much for a reshipper.
So, when I see ads for them (like on LTT) I get bitter.
for US or north american BASed people DROp I find to be a blessing without them we wouldn’t have the many of out obvious recc’s.they also help drive pricing down for a lot of gear. and the occatsional time you see a good drop on a non drop product they are awesome for those who are patient. Im kinda mad at them right now cause they are a bout a month late shipping my wrist rest.