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Austin - next HTF meet planning

Discussion in 'Home Theater Forum Meets' started by Scott Oliver, Jul 21, 2004.

  1. Dave Elliott

    Dave Elliott Stunt Coordinator

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    One of my HT clients is buying a projector from Jacob and we've been chatting a bit about the store. I think he has a location lined up but it sounds like theres a lot of work to do before its official. But, it sounds like it'll be AWESOME. He seems very busy (I think he's getting married this month) so I'm sure he'll chime in when he has a chance.

    I'm game for an acoustic treatment seminar. I'll be moving all my HT equipment into a den here this fall.

    -Dave
     
  2. Scott Oliver

    Scott Oliver Screenwriter

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    Yeah, he is getting married and then attending CEDIA after that.

    My guess is that this opening event won't be able to happen to mid to late October at the earliest. Good to hear that he has found an alternate location.
     
  3. Jacob Aaron

    Jacob Aaron Stunt Coordinator

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    ...
     
  4. Hank Frankenberg

    Hank Frankenberg Cinematographer

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    Jacob, apology accepted. Sorry to read about Ashley's injuries and your Grandfather's health problem. Obviously the building "rip" was a blessing in disguise. A refurbed Victorian house HT/Audio "playscape" seems like a great venue. Count me in for the gatherings.[​IMG]
     
  5. Nils Luehrmann

    Nils Luehrmann Producer

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    Jacob,

    You've had a busy month! I hope Ashley is doing well now and I'm glad to hear your grandfather was able to pull through.

    As Hank said, it sounds like the change of venue will turn out to be a blessing.

    I look forward to hearing more about your trip to CEDIA. Your experience with Rotel's GM, Mike Bartlett (not Barnett) certainly sounded bizarre - I would have loved to see your expression after he made that remark.

    Maybe if our schedules don't conflict we can try and get together in the next week or so.

    Keep up the good fight and I'll talk to you soon!
     
  6. Dave Elliott

    Dave Elliott Stunt Coordinator

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    Jacob,

    The new site sounds like it'll remind me of Progressive Audio. The upper floors were just like a house converted into various listening and media rooms.

    I'm jealous of your Star Wars DVD. I'll be getting mine Tuesday morning for sure, provided they don't sell out Monday at midnite.

    Can't wait to see the new location.

    -Dave
     
  7. Jacob Aaron

    Jacob Aaron Stunt Coordinator

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    Hank- Thanks. Yes the new home will be really nice. I'm renovating the third floor into an office,bedroom, masterbath, and creating two bedrooms on the second floor for corporate guests to stay. It doesn't hurt that Ashley is an amazing chef (her last company was a catering company that did 200+ weddings just last year). So now I won't have to drive to work for a chance to play in the $200k HT at work, but can just walk downstairs. We're enclosing the living area away from the store. Its still giving the store 3000 SF which is 1200 more than it would have had.

    Nils- I think I said something about "the damn English," being involved in the industry as well (totally tongue in cheek) and I tried to fix it, but he acted TOTALLY put off that Ashley was part of the conversation. It was really disturbing as I have a lot of respect for the company's goals over the next couple of years. They are really planning on making customers more important and their Dealer relationship was getting totally remodeled.

    Their booth was accross from "vision art," and I started the conversation with Mike and things were going really well. Ashley was being told that the "Vision Art," frames REALLY did cost $5000, $7000, or $9000 (more like $500, $700, $900---you know the framed plasmas with art that scrolls down). So Ashley comes over and politely interupts with "I'm the co-owner pleased to meet you," and he then makes the woman statement. After that a conversation that was going extremely well turned into a conversation between a rude English jerk and two polite people.

    An employee named "Dave," from Rotel gave me his card and apologized saying something like "we can talk, but that was bad timing," so I may still pursue them if Ashley lets me.

    So I spent Monday in Dallas with family that own an art gallery. This was an eye opening experience. We priced the EXACT same frame (from the same frame company) and the exact same print. An $11,200 "Vision Art," piece to cover your plasma that every installer in the nation is selling to my knowledge costs $800. A unit that costed $5900 cost only $420.

    So "Vision Art," is a gigantic rip-off. The art gallery in Dallas is going to team up with me and offer the same thing built by us but with 3-10 different prints on the same roll to choose from. So that picture over the plasma can be a different picture every day if you wanted. We will be charging fair prices. Vision Art doesn't use one print thats worth more than $500. So if we matched their best we'd have a $5,500 frame with TEN paintings not 1.

    I'm also thinking of adding southern style paintings to offer, and to top it off this Gallery in Dallas uses a better printing style thats 3 times the resolution as Vision Art.

    So our custom design side will be offering people the same or better than the competition at literally 1/5th the cost (Gallery and I need markup).

    Auton said if the design works well they'd buy it from me. So I'm looking to go that way.

    Dave- I was thinking "Goodwin's HighEnd," and "Progressive Audio," the ENTIRE time I was designing the store to begin with. Now I can actually DO IT, maybe not as big, but I can do it as well with less vendors.

    I plan on focusing on one to two companies for an entire market spot, and I really think that will work great as long as the product is one of the best.

    If anyone needs to email me:

    [email protected]

    is now the best way to contact me.
     
  8. Jacob Aaron

    Jacob Aaron Stunt Coordinator

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    ........
     
  9. Scott Oliver

    Scott Oliver Screenwriter

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    Sounds very cool Jacob. Looking forward to all of it.
     
  10. Scott Oliver

    Scott Oliver Screenwriter

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    Speaking of audio meets I found this picture on Enjoy the Music.com
    [​IMG]
    Umm, I want to go to that listening party!:b

    or go here as the picture seems to not want to load.
     
  11. Jonathan DA

    Jonathan DA Screenwriter

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    Eh, where's the pic?
     
  12. Jacob Aaron

    Jacob Aaron Stunt Coordinator

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    Aren't those girls just a little young Scott?
     
  13. Jacob Aaron

    Jacob Aaron Stunt Coordinator

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    Ok the date for the big event will be around the 15th of November or the last week of November. I'm waiting on one of the companies to tell me when he will be in town. I'm going to base it all off that. I got "caught," mentioning it before confirming it, and he called me. I realized that in my busy rush I hadn't told him the details.

    All the people I mentioned offered to be on hand for any "event," and the important people I'm organizing it around. Some companies are still looking over "credit," and due to an on-rush after CEDIA they're busy.

    I also need to mention certain companies like VTL, Martin Logan, Meridian, and others don't allow "discounts," off MSRP greater than 5%. Its in the Dealer Agreements, and while I'm still crossing my fingers on a few lines, I WON'T be breaking any contracts.

    So some items will be 5% off for the BIG sale, but we can be talked into throwing things in like interconnects, speaker cable, etc. to make it a MUCH better deal.

    These companies have these clauses to protect the consumer, the dealers, and the company. If you get in the act of discounting it hurts the value of the product. These companies protect their products, and it means that the consumer is getting a fair price every time.

    This is a BIG sale because its something we won't be doing on any kind of regular basis. Most of the product lines we carry have strict rules of sales procedures. It just so happens these rules go with my philosophy of sales. I believe in selling as close to MSRP as possible, and that its worth it because of the service I offer.

    I also believe in taking care of your customers, meaning repeat customers will get better, and better deals. These deals will ALL fit under my contractual obligations. There is no deal that says I can't throw in $500 worth of interconnects, etc. I just protect the product's value.

    While I've heard positive things from all the lines (except for Meridian, who promises a word by mid-October), I'm still waiting for many to go thru the "process," which takes longer than one might immediately assume.

    The reps are all positive about the process, and I've got no worries.

    My whole experience has only shown me that these companies not only make great product, but have great people standing behind their product.
     
  14. Nils Luehrmann

    Nils Luehrmann Producer

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    The website says that Jacob's store is currently slated to open on Thanksgiving weekend. If our meet is going to happen around that time perhaps we should start planning an itinerary.

    Jacob,

    I for one would be happy to assist you in getting the shop prepared, and I'm sure others here would as well, but you'll have to speak up and let us know what we can do to help.
     
  15. Nils Luehrmann

    Nils Luehrmann Producer

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    Well folks, I think it is time we start discussing alternative plans.

    The last time I or anyone I know has last heard from Jacob was just prior to the Texas OU game which was over a month ago. We have tried reaching him at several of the numbers he gave us and left numerous messages. Follow-up calls have sometimes resulted in getting automated messages that say that number is no longer in service.

    Checking his website periodically for updates showed a major change about two weeks ago when the very professional multiple page website was oddly replaced with a very basic single page website which is what shows up currently.

    It says the company, Audio Ascensions is currently doing custom installations and that the retail store will be opening up Thanksgiving weekend, but someone drove by the the location, 801 Rio Grande, which back in September Jacob had said he had purchased, but they didn't notice any sign of activity and there was still a "For Lease" sign on the property. A call to the realtor revealed that the building had not been sold and is currently available for lease.

    This is all very confusing because one of the conversations I had with Jacob prior to him going MIA was that he had already begun renovation on the property and was closed to finishing up the upstairs living quarters, but that the retail area still had a great deal of work left to do. Perhaps the location changed again?

    Jacob had mentioned that Luke Manley was going to fly in for the store’s grand opening and offer a demo VTL’s latest amplifiers so I figured if the location changed he would know about it. I called up Luke as we have met before, and asked if he knew what the status was for his trip to Austin and he said that they have not heard from Jacob for several weeks – and apparently other vendors have also not heard back from Jacob over the same period of time.

    I certainly hope Jacob and Ashley are OK and that his absence and apparent end to his home theater venture are not due to some dreadful accident. I’m sure I am not alone in my concerns.

    Jacob, if you are still around and watching this, please let us know you are OK.
     
  16. Hank Frankenberg

    Hank Frankenberg Cinematographer

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    Yes Jacob, we hope you guys are alright. If not, and plans fell through or are delayed, please let us know.
    Otherwise, Nils knows my fireman theory.
     
  17. Chris Quinn

    Chris Quinn Screenwriter

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    Hello all,

    I was at the Austin listening group in October and someone told me Houston has a very active audio group. I can't find any info on the Houston group. Can anyone point me in the right direction?

    Thanks.
     
  18. Scott Oliver

    Scott Oliver Screenwriter

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    Hi Chris,

    A couple of groups that I can point you towards.

    Burke Strickland posts on this site about Houston area HT meets although thier planning goes on via some other avenue. You can get in touch with that group via [email protected]

    There is also or was a Houston Audio Club, I know Julian of Sedona Sky Sound went to them but I haven't seen a post talking of a recent meet to know if they are still active. But you could contact Julian at www.sedonaskysound.com or an Audio Asylum member named Timbre used to post updates on the site after meets and he has an email link off of his name via Audio Asylum. So you could send him an email and get in touch with them that way as well.



    Lastly there is the Lonestar Bottleheads groups that rotates around to the general vicinity of the big 4 TX cities. You can keep up with them via http://wardsweb.org/LSB/
     
  19. Scott Oliver

    Scott Oliver Screenwriter

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    I have a mini-meet announcement!

    There will be a new addition to the Oliver family next week probably, actually a pair of additions.

    Meet my new little amps.
    [​IMG]
    Wyetech Labs Onyx Monoblocks

    I am going to bring them in and keep my Art Audio amp as well, so that I can compare them on my system to see which one fits best. Then after a month or so I will sell off my least favorite. My mini-meet then is that I would like to have some folks come over to hear the two in action, so that your thoughts and opinions can help me pick the eventual winner. Right now I am thinking of the second weekend in December as good time to do this. May not have the amps in time for the first weekend. Any interest?
     
  20. Frederick_Falk

    Frederick_Falk Second Unit

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    Saturdays will work for me just fine. Weeknights right now are pretty hecktic (sp?). Let me know the date and I would love to join you.

    Those amps look really cool! I look forward to hearing these little jewels.
     

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