Good post Gir ! I think you’re right.
Yeah, where do we post this ? — I’ll try here.
First up everybody should be following intellectual property laws and rights. That’s why these international laws exists and that’s a good thing. But there is another thing that is good, the flip-side of this, the ability of anyone in the marketplace to use the technology and knowledge that is in the public domain and available for use. These two principles together promote technological development. This is also involved with the expansion of the market you mentioned.
Part of what is property is the copyrighted portion of a product, and it is important both that this is protected, but open to fair use. There is a balance.
So you can, as you have Gir, look at who is damaged, when legitimate development competes within a product marketplace. I might add to what you posted Gir, that third party synth owners can be affected by the potential decrease in value of there classic equipment should they choose to sell it. Of course this is also offset by the potential benefit to the buyers of this classic equipment. Seems to me, that given everyone is playing by the rules these third party effects are just a part of doing business.
Looking at the benefit to Behringer, or the other companies with similar business models, i sometimes wonder about how lucrative there business model really is ? Could they increase there ROI with a more conventional model ?
It’s not that recreating an old design is easy. In some ways there are added development steps. Done right you need to add an iterative step toward the end where you compare your product with the “target” and return for redesign on what you missed. And let me clarify something, as an engineer, it’s not like you take an x-ray of the PCB and just copy it. It’s not a clone like that. You need to engineer the product, within current technology (like surface mount components, and new chips etc.). Now granted they do open the box and look, many engineers do this, this is one way you learn. And there is considerable less time spent writing your spec. But these products are all carefully engineered and considered. And someone is spending time, selecting future products, and thinking through the economics for a product — sales volume, production costs, profit, etc.
I often wonder about the economics of a Behringer product, are they really killing it at the price they sell the product at ? Is there really a payback on all the costs to design and manufacture a Solina String Ensemble synth ? Or how about their keyboard vocoder, the VC 340 ? How about the 40 or 50 Eurorack modules ?
Perhaps on their volume products, like the TD-3 or the RD-6, they make a killing ? But did you look at the price on these ? And then they carry these in a spectrum of colors that adds to the costs of distribution, and delivery.
We won’t know but i suggest B’s ROI is not that great. There are many others in the industry, that i suggest have crafted their business to have a better ROI.