“Let our rigorous testing and reviews be your guidelines to A/V equipment – not marketing slogans”
Facebook Youtube Twitter instagram pinterest

NHT is Back!

by June 29, 2009

Now Hear This wants you to know it’s back in business. The much-loved American speaker manufacturer’s hiatus only lasted a few months – it was about as short lived as the death of a comic book character before being brought back to life by a miraculous plot-wrinkle. But the comeback for NHT is sure to have a few plot-twists of its own.

It was only last March when NHT co-founder Chris Byrne announced that the speaker company was “going quiet”. The company assured us it hadn’t gone bankrupt as a result of the foul economy but that it would sell off existing inventory through dealers and then close its doors. Byrne assured us NHT just needed time to rethink its strategy for the future but left us with the ominous thought that its closure was:

“…all about the realities of the world and how consumer attitudes are changing, and how we as a brand and an industry can best respond to the need for real invention.”

It’s a sad day when an innovative company like NHT goes away, even though Byrne suggested it was not a permanent good-bye. We never would have thought NHT was coming back so soon.

So, what’s the new strategy for NHT in the future?

Two words – “Online Retail”. NHT will use a direct-to-consumer model, similar to what is used by other online brands like Outlaw and Emotiva. In his statement on NHThifi.com Byrne says: "By going direct, we were able to permanently reduce the price of our speakers by as much as 30 percent from their original suggested retail price."

NHT also says that the plan frees up resources that they can put directly into R&D. Byrne boasts the company is currently working on up to eight new concepts. As a consumer I like the sound of that! But, what about the dealers that worked so hard over the years helping build the NHT brand?

Byrne says you’ll still be able to buy NHT speakers from your favorite authorized retailers and installers. It will be interesting to see how this plays out but... It sounds like the retailers and installers are finding themselves on the wrong end of a hybrid retail model.

About the author:

Wayde is a tech-writer and content marketing consultant in Canada s tech hub Waterloo, Ontario and Editorialist for Audioholics.com. He's a big hockey fan as you'd expect from a Canadian. Wayde is also US Army veteran, but his favorite title is just "Dad".

View full profile

Recent Forum Posts:

chris357 posts on July 04, 2009 11:51
chris357, post: 590916
i dont completely disagree with you

and I knew when I said it that I was generalizing a little too much about all of them being the reason we as a country are in this situation. BUT

you really shoudl see what people are saying here.. its like because they economy sucks we shoudl give them whatever it is for half off.. they act like we should be happy for their offer. This entitlement is what aggrevates me.. yes value is determined based on what someone is willing to pay.. BUT at some point its just some mooch trying to get something for nothing. as a pretty decent consumer myself I try to educate myself on what im buying and as for audio equipment I buy used.. thats the best deal and i have had great luck with it.. not to mention what i want to buy just is toooooo expensive and used is the only way to make it possible.

I'm in a way just venting about the customer thing it sucks being in a sales enviroment right now and if I thought there was something better out there I'd go do it.. i just wish people respected a decent salesman

sorry for taking this thread off track.. i get a little emotional on the subject of knowledgable retailers making a living.

back to the happy point of NHT being back in action and not worring about them offering 30 day trials and such.. they are a great customer service oriented company.

chris357 posts on July 03, 2009 11:26
ace0001a, post: 590541
Having done what you've done myself, I surely understand. But you know (and I know of course), how easily the tables can be turned. Sure you can argue that the bad economy is caused by consumers trying to low ball and you can't blame them. From your standpoint as a sales man, you can also gripe at your fellow retailers who “encourage” this behavior by making low ball sales. Like everything else, there are two sides to the arguement. Even as a salesman, I always tried to look at things from the perspective of the consumer. Bottom line for me is that I have no sympathy for those in business not willing to adjust to the economic times. You can't blame people for trying to save a buck these days and seriously can't blame them for driving the economy down…just like most people, I blame the greedy people in the home loan industry for that. Like I said that I'm not for retailers losing money, just that I feel there's no room to be picky about who you sell to these days. In my case, I now strictly buy my gear from online retailers…one of which today just gave me a big deal on a receiver. As for NHT, I applaud their move to be internet direct and think they're doing the right thing by following through with the standard 30-day trial on their speakers.

i dont completely disagree with you

and I knew when I said it that I was generalizing a little too much about all of them being the reason we as a country are in this situation. BUT

you really shoudl see what people are saying here.. its like because they economy sucks we shoudl give them whatever it is for half off.. they act like we should be happy for their offer. This entitlement is what aggrevates me.. yes value is determined based on what someone is willing to pay.. BUT at some point its just some mooch trying to get something for nothing. as a pretty decent consumer myself I try to educate myself on what im buying and as for audio equipment I buy used.. thats the best deal and i have had great luck with it.. not to mention what i want to buy just is toooooo expensive and used is the only way to make it possible.

I'm in a way just venting about the customer thing it sucks being in a sales enviroment right now and if I thought there was something better out there I'd go do it.. i just wish people respected a decent salesman
Boerd posts on July 02, 2009 18:53
chris357, post: 590374
In regards to a 30 day trial. i just emailed NHT directly and they responded with lightning speed. here is what they wrote

“We will publish our store policies in the next few days. The normal boiler plate stuff. Bottom line, we will offer a 30 money back guarantee of satisfaction including the refund of shipping. Of course there will be conditions like original box and packing, the issuance of a proper RMA, no damage to products, etc.

Thanks for the note and best wishes,”

I hope everyone feels more confident with NHT and their future plans I know I do.

Man, I am happy about it. Go NHT !!!
ace0001a posts on July 02, 2009 18:20
chris357, post: 590338
Sure its better to make a little rather than nothing.. but as a person who is in sales.. it seems to me that consumers are using the economy as a way of trying to rationalize the retailers to do below cost sales. they have this attitude that since the economy is so bad you must be dying to get rid of your inventory on this expensive merchandise. “i'm doing you a favor to offer you half just to get rid of it”

honestly these people are the reason we are in such bad shape in this country! as a salesman who gets paid on profit not the gross sale its hard to make a living when the profit is so small.

Having done what you've done myself, I surely understand. But you know (and I know of course), how easily the tables can be turned. Sure you can argue that the bad economy is caused by consumers trying to low ball and you can't blame them. From your standpoint as a sales man, you can also gripe at your fellow retailers who “encourage” this behavior by making low ball sales. Like everything else, there are two sides to the arguement. Even as a salesman, I always tried to look at things from the perspective of the consumer. Bottom line for me is that I have no sympathy for those in business not willing to adjust to the economic times. You can't blame people for trying to save a buck these days and seriously can't blame them for driving the economy down…just like most people, I blame the greedy people in the home loan industry for that. Like I said that I'm not for retailers losing money, just that I feel there's no room to be picky about who you sell to these days. In my case, I now strictly buy my gear from online retailers…one of which today just gave me a big deal on a receiver. As for NHT, I applaud their move to be internet direct and think they're doing the right thing by following through with the standard 30-day trial on their speakers.
chris357 posts on July 02, 2009 11:13
In regards to a 30 day trial. i just emailed NHT directly and they responded with lightning speed. here is what they wrote

“We will publish our store policies in the next few days. The normal boiler plate stuff. Bottom line, we will offer a 30 money back guarantee of satisfaction including the refund of shipping. Of course there will be conditions like original box and packing, the issuance of a proper RMA, no damage to products, etc.

Thanks for the note and best wishes,”

I hope everyone feels more confident with NHT and their future plans I know I do.
Post Reply