KVG Laboratories

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Manufacturing Issues

Controversy has persisted over whether hand-made is simply an affectation and not to the same quality as automated mass-production techniques. We spent a decade experimenting to determine the best way to make our products — mass production or hand made?

The answer wasn’t so cut-and-dried.

Some things must be mass produced to be affordable yet high quality, such as semiconductors, electronic components, fasteners, mechanical parts, and most materials. Think about it: screws are cheap and yet quality because they’re mass produced.

However, at a certain point mass production demands uniformity, and uniformity requires compromise. Here’s where hand-made has the edge. Whenever you deal with one of the human senses, you’re dealing, ultimately, with perceptions and opinions. Ask a hundred people what the best tasting ice cream is, you'll get a hundred different answers. It’s the same with sound. Everyone has a different perception of what is “the best sound.” Mass produced audio equipment has to make assumptions and then cater to broad generalities. The “average listener” concept is flawed. What’s an average listener?

In contrast, hand made audio equipment or music instruments can be made to satisfy a specific listener’s tastes.

Here’s a good analogy. It’s the difference between off-the-rack clothes and custom-tailored. Both use mass-produced fabrics, threads, buttons and zippers, but off-the-rack clothes are made in a few sizes based on manufacturer’s assumptions — and which may not fit you well — but custom tailored clothes will fit you perfectly.

We strive to strike a balance between the efficiency of mass-production and the uncompromising quality of hand made. So, you’ll find that we make only one-off unique products, bespoke products, and limited-run “almost mass produced” products. This lets us give you the highest possible quality at the most feasibly-low cost.