July 3, 2006

Synthesis Technology getting out of kit biz...

by Chris Randall

Paul Schreiber has just announced that, as of 1/1/07, MOTM modules will no longer be available in kit form, as he is moving the entire production to SMT processes, and only crazy people like Adam will build SMT kits. You can read the lengthy article here. Quite frankly, I had a feeling he was going to do something like this as soon as he announced that the Frac versions of his modules would be SMT. Can't keep 'em down on the farm, etc...

In any case, there is going to be a big 15% off sale, so if you're in to the MOTM format, now's the time to stock up.



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Jul.03.2006 @ 10:51 PM
Adam Schabtach
Yes re solder braid. The other thing you need is a flux pen, as mentioned on the BDMicro site.

The toaster approach only makes sense if you're doing mass production. It's way more complicated than hand soldering because you have to create a solder mask and mess around with solder paste. That overhead simply isn't worth it unless you're doing a bunch of identical boards.



Jul.05.2006 @ 12:24 AM
Wow. End of an era. I built seven modules of a MOTM rig and the shit was SOLID. I'm not so sure about SMT sound quality versus through-hole. Too bad about the kits, but it was pretty amazing that they existed in the first place.

Jul.05.2006 @ 12:58 AM
Chris Randall
Adam actually had a come-back for that very statement that he shared with me over iChat the other day: the Apogee Rosetta series is SMT, and that's about as good a sound as you're gonna get, period. Q.E.D.

I don't have any problem with that sort of thing. The best outboard is discrete, but that's because those sorts of companies just build things that way, not for any other particular reason, I don't think.



Jul.05.2006 @ 7:20 PM
I have one thing to say... screw the kits. It did nothing but create a huge backlog for the people buying the assembled modules. A few actually bought kits... assembled the kits... and then sold the assembled kit.... all before any assembled modules were delivered!

Great decision by Paul. DIYer's will thank him some day if they ever recover from inhaling lead fumes.


Jul.05.2006 @ 10:46 PM
Adam Schabtach
Actually, until about a year ago, the vast majority of MOTM sales were kits (94% kits is the number Paul gave, although I don't know whether that's units or dollars), and we (kit builders) typically waited at least as long as anyone who ordered assembled modules. It mostly depended upon when you put in your order relative to when Paul restocked on panels and certain critical components, and where your order happened to fall in the queue relative to when he was doing kits or assembling modules. You might as well say screw Tyco for not shipping knobs when he needed them, or screw Bourns for not being able to meet his demand for potentiomenters when he needed them. (Yes, both of those things have happened.)

I use a fan to direct lead fumes away from my face when building modules, so no recovery time needed and screw you for the implication.

I'll never thank Paul for getting out of the kit business, but I have already thanked him for staying in business at all, rather than throwing in the towel in the face of challenges such as RoHS and the demise of through-hole technology.



Jul.06.2006 @ 6:00 PM
I respectively disagree.

1. "Until about a year ago" is false. Paul's statement is "over the years" and that kits have been on the steady decline. Who knows how many potential assembled owners were turned off by the ridiculous wait?
2. When he moved to "outsourcing" his kits, there was a huge disparity between kit and assembled.
3. I waited nearly 2 years for an assembled CS-80 filter. During that period *atleast* 2 people had kits and attempted to sell them on the list.

Kits are gone. HAHAHAHA


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