When can we customers who is slightly tierd of the portfolio looking forward to see a brand new dCS product, is there any time frame ?
Good to hear from you again Fredrik.
dCS are not likely to announce a new product before they can ensure a proper launch schedule, otherwise it just produces frustration amongst their potential customers. A hint about this can be drawn from the past MQA upgrade story when the dates announced for release had to be moved back more than once with the result that dCS said they would not make such announcements in the future.
We can reasonably anticipate a replacement to Vivaldi first as it has been in production for the longest time and their modus operandi has been to launch a flagship then less expensive models derived from that.
Unfortunately world circumstances due to covid 19, the unreliability of launch vehicles such as the big audio shows e.g. Munich High End plus the current component/raw material supply issues must affect their plans.
Incidentally I just checked on Munich and although scheduled for May next year, their booking enquiries warn that it will be necessary to check on the show’s status before attending.
So I must conclude that you will probably know only when dCS think it feasible.
And where would you go ? What is your short list of gear you heard and you do know they are better than a dCS Vivaldi stack ?
I might be interested in…
Funny thing you guys answering in dCS place
I expect an serious breif answer from dCS, like all companies they need to show the customers some sort of future plan, or if they are planing on something, just to keep some hype, but it is very quiet, so thats why my curiosity if they struggling with som internal dilemmas or economy.
And yes dCS got competitors like everything else in the world has, if you just look out of the window, you’ll see
Many companies (arguably, most) never comment on future products. The biggest example is of course Apple; while there are plenty of rumours, speculation, and some possible leaks, Apple never officially comments about future products. At the public launch of new products (not necessarily the same as public availability), they do talk about near-term feature pipeline, but never future products.
Why not a version 3.0 ?
Products cannot continue indefinitely without replacement as income to the manufacturer will ultimately dry up and the company will cease to exist. At this point, after ten years or so of production, almost all demand for new Vivaldis will have been met.
The platform that dCS uses for Vivaldi is now over ten years old - a long time in digital technology.
A new version of software is a huge cost to dCS but produces no revenue as updates are free to users.
I wouldn’t expect a v.3.0.
Technology startups provide detailed product roadmaps exclusively to their venture capital investors. They have to - otherwise they would not receive funding. Mature companies guard roadmaps as trade secrets. Economically and strategically those documents would be highly valuable for the competition.
The counter example is the Linn lp12…No one can say they upgraded much software in that case…so Vivaldi 3.0 is possible if dCS decide they want to do it…and it would be great if we can re use hardware instead of throwing away beautiful gear like Vivaldi boxes…Vivaldi 3.0 shall help saving the planet
Great idea. MMLabs had already proposed a similar solution for some time. You could replace hardware components and have newer hardware in the old housing. Sometimes, however, it is impossible. And sometimes less profitable for the company.
A subscription model would solve the revenue issue, and make a V3 V4 V5 etc viable and profitable.
Seems an odd choice to replace Vivaldi, competitors are knocking out machines at over 120K, assuming a replacement would be in or above that league of price then the cost hierarchy would be 12k 20k then 120k surely you would need a product between. Better to let Vivaldi run a few years with a V3 and add something above.
I didn’t know that the LP12 upgrades are free like dCS’.
Actually Linn have an interesting business model there and one that is difficult to replicate. I bought my LP12 in 1974 and bought all of the upgrades until 1997. By that time I had effectively re-bought my turntable ( except the stainless steel top plate) more than twice over.
A major difference with turntables is that the fundamental technology was fixed by around 1950. There are no new formats or sources to contend with. Only refinement by iteration. A Garrard 301 bought in 1953 , if maintained, is really no worse than a 2021 LP12. Some would claim better.
BTW, when the successor to Vivaldi comes along the world’s existing Vivaldis will not be going to landfill. I would guess that even now most dCS Elgars are still working somewhere. And you won’t have to buy the new one.
No one said that Vivaldi 3.0 should be for free …
Obviously the Vivaldi is built to last and shall play music many years after its successor is on the market…but that is the point…ask Linn if they think they made a mistake with their business model… I am not saying dCS must copy it, I am just saying that in 2021, we should have sustainable products, in particular when they are very well built, with high quality material…such as dCS products.
But I guess that eventually you are right, they will make a new product, it is the easiest and the more profitable…on the short term.
I could not agree more. I don’t think this is a suitable forum for political comment but the climate issue could be existential for our species. Do we really need luxury hi-fi or even hi-fi at all? All of those class A components never switched off…
The Theta Casablanca is a good example of this idea. I bought my processor 18 years ago and have gone through 5 upgrades since. It was a great HT processor when I bought it, and it is much better today. Admittedly, it was designed to be upgradeable from the beginning.
With the severe semiconductor shortage expected to last for at least another 6-8 months, if not more. Coupled with a 20% increase in Xilinx’s FPGA chip pricing, not to mention months long lead time for their chips (and pending AMD acquisition), I wonder if a Vivaldi 3.0 is indeed more realistic for 2022, rather than a whole new flagship product.
A new full version is unlikely as:
The technical capabilities of the existing platform may not support whatever that might be.
Unlike the point in time at which v.2.0 was introduced Vivaldi is presumed to be at or towards the end of its planned production life. dCS has to retain features to be sales points for its successor ( and there has to be one eventually for commercial reasons).
So, if there is demand and it is feasible a v.2 point something introducing minor improvements ( e.g. support for DSD 256) would be more likely if new sales for that period of supply instability need to be supported.
However most feature requests that we see here could/would be implemented via Mosaic which I think is a more likely place to have expectations.
However this is all speculation, fun as it is to do.
A halfway house could be make a new or upgraded flagship clock, and a V3 that only works properly if you have the clock.
I do support this idea. You see people buying Vivaldi clock buying a clock to improve the clock, eventually they spend twice the price of the initial Vivaldi clock.
May be selling a clock which does not need to be improved by a non dCS product would be a bright idea. If they do that, they have one customer: me
I think you missed my point Pete. Whether it’s 3.0 or 2.x, my point was that a whole new flagship platform in the near term may be unrealistic given the current global supply chain challenges.
The Vivaldi was so far ahead of its time, both 1.0 and 2.0, that even today, it’s still sonically competitive with the best of the best, in 2021!
So, (a) an incremental update may well still push it ahead of everything else in the market, and (b) I’d imagine a totally new dCS flagship has to be a significant step up and once again well ahead of it’s time; given the current challenges, that may take time to develop.