All things QMx

Discussion in 'Collectibles by Brand' started by Lars, Jul 22, 2011.

  1. phil the sixth Charter Lounger

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    I don't know Steve...if you look how Qmx raised one of their Enterprises with $2000 (from $5000 to $7000) because materials are more expensive these days it speaks volumes to me.I think Lars have one or two things to say about that,lol.
    I don't know about FX or Enterprise kits...I can only speak of my experience...some of those kits such as my Y-wing are licensed too, have a limitation of 44 pieces and they come with a COA plaque.(mine is 32/44)."Koensayr manufacturing" was the company that made those kits.I paid something similar for a completed kit (but with a higher finishing level) as the MR Y-wing back in the days...
    But I agree with you on the fact that it is a much more ambitious and costly undertaking than a one-off kit but still way overpriced...I feel their recent exorbitant price gauging has more to do with their succes and enormous waitlists,lol.
     
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  2. Stephen Charter Lounger

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    In the Star Wars mythos Phil, Koensayr Manufacturing is the name of a company that builds Starships. Correct me if I'm wrong but I couldn't find any record of a licensed Y Wing model by any real-life company with that name via Google.
    :shrug:
     
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  3. phil the sixth Charter Lounger

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  4. phil the sixth Charter Lounger

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    Ah,ok...I didn't know that Steve...I thought it was the company that produced these kits,lol... I'm such a retard... :doh: :lol:
    I guess the name of the company is written below, in de left corner of the plaque,(from view point) But I can't read it...the letters are so damn small,even smaller in person.
     
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  5. Batman29 Demands Audiences

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    Stephen wrote 20 hours earlier  » 
    In fairness though the kits produced by FX were unlicensed, un-numbered and even by QMx standards, took an age to produce, correct? FX also never seemed to appear at shows like Comic Con, or do any kind of marketing (unlike QMx).
    I'm not saying these things in their entirity account for the difference in price between a licensed ship and a kit, because clearly if you count the nuts and bolts in each ship and the labour time to build one they are the same.
    However making and selling 100 licensed ships is an entirely more ambitous and costly undertaking than one-off made to order kits. And aside from all that, maybe QMx just have a different approach (i.e. more aggressive) to pricing and profitting from a licensed ST ship building endevour?
    Bottom line is that I don't feel that QMx should be universally condemned on pricing simply because the old kit version could be had cheaper. That was then and this is now is my general feeling about it all.


    Correct on all points Steve.
    What I would like to add to this is that with all the marketing, licensing, etc, does it come out to $10 000? Maybe $5 000 yes. The thing I see here is that we have a one company which is a modeller, seller, and distributor (FX) and another (QMx) that, from what I know, is the seller/distributor of products.
    In this case QMx had the license, FX did not, and the two worked to together.
    What would the price have been if only FX was doing these and had the license?
    Don't get me wrong, I believe in companies working together, sharing (as in this case FX builder and QMx has the license) ... something just seems askew and does not add up to the $10 000.
    I wonder if there is double or triple the labour hours going into this ship?
     
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  6. Stephen Charter Lounger

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    I guess we can speculate on the ins and outs of the pricing, but the facts are that before QMX, FX were small - producing a very small quantity of made-to-order ST ship kits. At some point QMX took a stake in the company (or bought outright), to form QMX FX Cinema Arts.
    Having done so production was moved to a new, larger 3,000 square foot facility in Florida, apparently with all new equipment and tooling, all for the express purpose of increasing the capacity of the FX company to take it from a small kit building operation, to a major player in the collectables market. Major licenses for Star Trek and Doctor Who followed - and the rest is history.
    It's likely the merger and relocation wasn't financed from company coffers - more likely bank loans, private investors etc. Those loans are again likely predicated on large sales forecasts, and healthy operating profits.
    For a private artisan or small outfit like what was FX to build you a kit of a ship you're looking at the cost for the raw materials and their time, the latter of which in my experience is often under-valued. Why do I say that - craftspeople are modest folk for whom profiting from their skills doesn't come especially naturally - especially if it's a side business to another main job. Perhaps Raf will agree with me here as an artisan himself, but certainly a few years back when I was making stencil canvas portraits for people I found it almost impossible to price for my time.
    On the other hand if you want a fully licensed piece that has come out of a 'professional' model shop, with your warranty, COA, and all the bells and whistles then it's going to cost you a lot more because it's coming from a company that while every bit as passionate about the ships as you and I, is producing licensed product with each unit needing to turn a healthy profit.
    All I can really offer is to say that having seen the prototype for this ship I was blown away in admiration for what QMX and FX had built (acrylic struts aside of course). Is it worth $10,000 to own one of just 100 ships, American designed and fabricated? for me yes without question. Is the ship over-priced? that's up for debate, all I'd ask is over-priced compared to what? because in my view the kit comparison is for me, and much as I hate this phrase, like comparing apples to oranges.
     
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  7. Lars Keymaster Staff Member

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    While it is good to be reminded of the signature qualities of entrepreneurship, the feeling remains that QMX in it's current state is a troubled company that has run into grave managerial and growth-related obstacles. The tab is now handed down to customers in the form of pricing policy and corporate communications out of the last millennium.
    The idea of enabling collectors access to products they might otherwise have never found out about is a laudable one, but only as long as you can make the numbers add up convincingly.
    I'd be surprised to see them around in two years time.
     
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  8. Batman29 Demands Audiences

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    Maybe the $10,000 price tag doesn't sound so bad when one considers this auction for custom Enterprise D model.
     
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  9. Stephen Charter Lounger

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    Lars wrote 40 minutes earlier  » 
    The idea of enabling collectors access to products they might otherwise have never found out about is a laudable one, but only as long as you can make the numbers add up convincingly.

    Sure go make the thing in China for half the retail price - then watch as customers ship it back to you because of faulty wiring lol.
    I'm just not seeing what's unconvincing about the price. Which American made, officially licensed, Star Trek model ship are you comparing it to?
     
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  10. Lars Keymaster Staff Member

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    Stephen wrote 26 minutes earlier  » 
    Sure go make the thing in China for half the retail price - then watch as customers ship it back to you because of faulty wiring lol.
    I'm just not seeing what's unconvincing about the price. Which American made, officially licensed, Star Trek model ship are you comparing it to?


    If only QMX's approach would result in that improved delivered quality you're talking about.
    All I'd ever need to compare it to are my own personal standards in a model and treatment at such prices and on that basis alone, I'm unconvinced.
     
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  11. Stephen Charter Lounger

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    Lars wrote 1 day earlier »
    If only QMX's approach would result in that improved delivered quality you're talking about.


    Just interested, but what's your basis for saying the delivered quality doesn't match up?
     
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  12. phil the sixth Charter Lounger

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    I just wanted to add that from what I've seen the quality is very good but not better than what Master Replicas released back in the days.To me it looks the same.I've recently saw the Serenity replica at Dieter's and while it looked nicely detailed and weathered it stroke me you couldn't tell the difference if it was made in the US or China.I'm telling this cause it is very important to consider when we are talking about that kind of money.Dieter was fortunate to get it at the older price but he would have paid probably close to $4000 today.I can't help asking myself:Shouldn't their be an obvious difference in quality of the product itself?OK,it comes with a remote controll for the lights and everything is stored in a crate for shipment,this experience is of the same level as if you would receive a cinemaquette,I'll give them that, but personally I also need to see a difference in the product itself when paying that kind of money.Just my humble opinion...
     
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  13. Stephen Charter Lounger

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    I don't think the Serenity could even be made in a factory in China Phil - not with that level of electronics any way.
    Whether the difference in quality between China and the USA is astoundingly obvious or not, the benefits of producing domestically, and controlling the entire process from start to finish in your own facility as opposed to outsourcing to China are obvious and multi-fold.
    Bottom line is that the US labour cost is going to be ten, eleven, twleve or more times that of the Chinese cost per hour. If it take 46 hours to assemble one Serenity, that's a big difference in price.
    Every day we see the same horror stories repeated on forums which are the result of Chinese manufacturing. Given the choice I'd happily vote with my wallet to see more production done in America.
     
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  14. phil the sixth Charter Lounger

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    Stephen wrote 1 hour earlier »
    I don't think the Serenity could even be made in a factory in China Phil - not with that level of electronics any way.


    Yes,a good point.
     
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  15. André Verbal Diarrhoea

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    I've read some reviews of people who received their BSG Viper's, and it wasn't packed that well inside the crate, and some parts broke off because of it. Same happened with that special Black Viper. There was also the issue with the canopy not fitting on the cockpit. And in the preview video's of the Viper, we saw Edward James Olmos sliding the canopy of the cockpit open, like it was mounted on a rails of some sort. The final product didn't feature that at all, it just sits on the sides of the cockpit instead of being able to slide, like it should. The weird thing was that there was also a 'off camera' video with Katee Sackhoff, and Olmos explained to here that she needed to 'slide' the canopy open, just for show, but that in reality it didn't work that way at all. Why the fuck show something like that then? To fool customers? Anyway, this all just shows that even with made in USA stuff, things go wrong or are just implemented in a lame way.
     
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  16. Lars Keymaster Staff Member

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    Stephen wrote 3 hours earlier  » 
    Just interested, but what's your basis for saying the delivered quality doesn't match up?

    I've had my fair share of dealings with them.
    Stephen wrote 3 hours earlier  » 
    Every day we see the same horror stories repeated on forums which are the result of Chinese manufacturing. Given the choice I'd happily vote with my wallet to see more production done in America - real artists getting real wages with all the knock on effects to the economy that brings. Doesn't that chime a chord for anyone?

    That sounds a lot like national/social romanticism to me (no offense meant).
    The bottom line for me remains that QMX has yet to prove that their final product is sufficiently superior to warrant (or at least try to convince me about) the immense price markup.
    As long as they fail to do that, their approach remains revisionist for it's own sake and ultimately redundant to me. :shrug:
     
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  17. Stephen Charter Lounger

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    At $10,000 made in China I'd agree you have a point.
     
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  18. WingdSoldier Little Miss Chatterbox

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    Just catched up after 2 weeks 'down time', and thought I'd chip in with my views on the subject.
    Like Phil mentioned above, I very recently received my Serenity, a little over a year and a half after placing my order. Mind you, I didn't order it directly from QMx, but through a retailer. Ordering directly would have not only meant a much higher chance of ending up with a damaged specimen, but would have cost me a fortune on import taxes and customs charges as well. So as regards to their communication standards and customer service, I can't comment.
    Now, the ship itself is a real beauty and I have to say that I'm very happy with it. The details are very nice, from the scorch marks around the engine area to the subtle differences like slight color variations and rivets here and there on all the little welded plates. You really get the feel like in the series and the movie that it was a patched-up ship.
    But, do I think it looks discernibly better than a model from MR or eFx for example? Honestly, no. Like I said, it looks great but on the exterior I just don't see that much difference. It also could have been a bit bigger that the 19" it measures now.
    I haven't been able to test out the lighting, cause I received a faulty power adaptor (A new one is already on the way. You can imagine I almost got a heart attack when I saw a big plume of smoke coming out of it! :shock: I just hope only the adaptor is damaged and not the electronics inside the ship), but from what I've seen on videos this is what really differentiates QMx from other companies: superior dynamic lighting effects.
    That, as well as their choice in highly popular cult licences and low edition sizes is what I think keeps them afloat. I totally agree that such a complex lighting scheme, US production, and off course the license itself all result in a higher price, but to me a USD 10,000 price tag like with the new Enterprise D is just ridiculous.
    I mean, not only are they one of the only companies out there that're demanding such prices (maybe even the only one, I certainly don't know any others), but they themselves have proven with their other Enterprises it can be done for less money. Even after the recent price inflation of those earlier models, it's still almost a whopping 50% more if you want the new Enterprise D.
    To say the least, they've certainly had a big change in policy from when they first started on the movie collectibles market. Who can still believe now that their press release at that time stated they were going to differentiate themselves from other companies by offering products that would be affordable to everyone? :p
    To conclude, I bought this piece because I'm a huge fan of the series (duh...), because I found a retailer that could get a hold of one at a reasonable price, and frankly because it's the only option if you want a Serenity model in your collection. I was very lucky to get a good price on it, which was probably the highest I was willing to give for it. I definitely wouldn't have bought it if I had to order directly, or if my retailer had offered it at his normal margin.
    In the end I certainly don't regret buying it. Now I just have to suffer some more waiting before I can see it with working lighting... :baffled:
     
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  19. phil the sixth Charter Lounger

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    WingdSoldier wrote 15 minutes earlier  » 
    To say the least, they've certainly had a big change in policy from when they first started on the movie collectibles market. Who can still believe now that their press release at that time stated they were going to differentiate themselves from other companies by offering products that would be affordable to everyone? :p


    LOL!
    Dieter,do you remember their initially price setting for the Serenity at $500 ? :doh:
    Anyways,thanks for your impressions my friend!The Serenity is a real beautie.And good luck with your new adaptor! :luck:
     
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  20. WingdSoldier Little Miss Chatterbox

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    phil the sixth wrote 2 hours earlier  » 
    Dieter,do you remember their initially price setting for the Serenity at $500 ? :doh:

    I do. I expected it wouldn't go on sale for $500, but I never imagined it would be 5 times the original price. After following the design and production process very closely for 2 years, I was pissed off for several weeks when they finally did release the definitive price. :doh:
     
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