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Radically upgrade your sound and music experience with this 100dB HiFi Bluetooth speaker/portable audio monitor. 50 hours playtime!
1,083 backers pledged £84,768 to help bring this project to life.

China Pt. 1 (an Update from the Creator)

Posted by Frankenspiel Ltd. (Creator)
12 likes

Hello everyone,

It’s David here, I’m currently in China helping coordinate the final stages of our project with Chia.

That’s Chia in the photo below, marching down our assembly line where our final production sample units and final components are being built. We’re aiming for around 50 perfectly-built units (25 stereo sets), ready for test and review by the time I return to Amsterdam beginning of June. And in accordance with our timeline, by the time I return we should have also delivered all of our components to our Amsterdam warehouse for final assembly and of course, delivery to you in July.

This brings us to our first point, the sample units.

We’ve got lots of blogs lined up who will be reviewing the FS-X before, during and after we ship to you. Of course this will help us market the product but our main focus right now is to give you backers something to sink your teeth into whilst you wait for delivery. And most of all facts, tests and opinions from independent and unbiased sources.

But we’d really welcome your feedback too, after all, you’ve been more involved (and for longer) than any reviewer could be. That’s why the team and I have come up with another idea.

The idea is, we could reallocate some of these sample stereo units and send them to a select few backers (as if you’re one of the blogs).

In the interest of transparency and authenticity, we’d be happy to leave this in your hands and allow all backers to nominate approximately 5 of you, using an online poll, to select those of who you feel would be the most appropriate.

These 5 backers will receive a ‘first look’ at the FS-X, along with other reputable blogs - some of which have seen the original version of the FS-X.

Those backers who receive the sample FS-Xs will be asked to return them once delivery commences in July. Or to feel free to keep them as a trade-in for their units (not including all other accessories).

Please let us know what you think in the comments!

I’d like to highlight a question by @Peter J about the battery functions of the FS-X.

@Peter J asked “Does anyone know how a battery such as the one in the FSX is degraded (if at all) when left plugged in, running from mains power all the time, and only unplugged for the odd outing here and there? I will most likely have these for desktop speakers but obviously want them to last when unleashed from the mains.”

This is a good question and it draws attention to a feature we haven’t previously mentioned - the FS-X can be used as a desktop speaker with USB cabled power (not USB audio).

In this case, when the battery is full, it will only be charged when the level falls to around 90%, it will then trickle-charge back to full.

Using the FS-X in this way, there is no need for wall charging. And if you wish to pick up an FS-X to go out and about, you are always safe with sufficient charge and therefore sufficient playtime.

This will not degrade overall battery lifetime.

There is also a power saving function implemented for these scenarios. So that when no sound is detected for 15 mins, the unit will go into standby mode and the power draw is extremely low.

The FS-X will check its voltage, and if the level is low and sufficient current is available, it will accept its full charge (2.1A) of up to 90%. When this level is reached, it will trickle-charge to full.

What happens if the charging current is lower? It is quite sophisticated - it will back off and charge at a lower rate, around 500 mA. If it detects a subsequent higher current, it will raise its charge rate.

Next week we’ll be talking more about other accessories, the backers ‘first look’, as well as answering some of your FAQs.

Here’s a reminder of our new timeline:

Now to End of May

Finalising project in China 

  • Providing final specs and pictures of all accessories (carry case, fast-charger, cables) 
  • Completing pre-production and build of units for test & review 
  • Delivery of all components to Amsterdam warehouse

June

Test & review of production FS-Xs by reputable blogs

Finalising project in Amsterdam 

  • Final assembly of all FS-X units from components 
  • Packaging of units and accessories in gift boxes to be sent worldwide

July

Delivery of all units to backers

Your next update will be no later than a week from now, Wednesday 27th May.

All the best,

David Archer and The Frankenspiel Team

Peter J, Chris Means, and 10 more people like this update.

Comments

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    1. Lee Gibson on

      Maybe send the sample units to the most negative backers. Odd move, but if they are happy you know your onto a winner!

    2. Raimis Juodvalkis on

      You guys are so crucked, May was a year late, and now July??? I will contact kicktarter and ask them for all backer emails. Then i will prepare collective law suit agains these fucking dicks.

    3. Missing avatar

      Alain on

      @Creators: How can you put a so bad photo in the update. We just can see nothing. This picture could have been grab on Google Images !!!
      Nothing in this picture show us that it's FKS related !!!! As usual with FKS Team, nothing clear, nothing fair .....

    4. Missing avatar

      Alain on

      Another update with nothing new except that it confirms that David is still in the process.That's a bad news for all backers .....

      I bet we'll not receive speakers in July.

    5. Marcus Sundman on

      @Kevin, no, it's not a particularly good PR move to tell good news when there is some. It's an obvious PR move. A good PR move would be to be transparent and honest when the news is bad. But David has time and again shown that he is incapable of doing good PR. Finally we have an update with a little bit of good news (if you can call it that.. I still think this will be another summer without the FS-X), but I have no doubt that there is also lots of bad news which David left out. That's apparently just how David is. He is incapable of being honest and open. He has shown that countless times already. In every single update before this one there was bad news David hid or lied about. Why would you think that this time is different? Just because there is some good news doesn't mean that there isn't any bad news that is treated exactly like all the other times.

    6. Marsha Tyszler
      Superbacker
      on

      @Frankenspiel, great update! I love the photo and explanation of where you're at. I'm also loving your idea to involve some backers in the review process. I would love to be involved in doing this. I'm not a professional sound engineer by far, but I'm a huge lover of quality sound and the gadgets that make it happen. I am an experienced reviewer as beta tester of all kinds of food, consumer products (including tech), and apps. I've reviewed stuff honestly for upwards of fifteen years as a hobby and consumer who wants to share great products and warn of crappy ones! So I'd happily take part in reviewing the FS-X -- not only the crucial sound aspects, but its build quality, usability, charging speeds, among other important factors. I would also address questions from backers. I'd happily write a review with photos and/or do a video review. Whether or not anyone votes for me is a whole other story, but I want to offer anyway, lol! (By the way, I'm all for voting -- but you might also want to consider asking the most active/involved backers to do the reviews as an alternative if people don't like the voting idea).

      One more thing. I am SO glad to see some more positive comments to this update! I've never lost confidence in this project, although I do understand people's frustration. I've barely commented in the past few updates to step back and observe the overall situation. The fire was fueled by some miscommunications and people particularly raised eyebrows when you fell silent or didn't amply address certain things. Backers get easily scared by both because they fear getting burned and losing their investment. I was almost burned by the famed LUCI project where the campaign leader almost walked with $315,000 after some keen backers proved that the prototype photo was doctored, there were legal issues posted by the Canadian government of fake businesses and such, the campaign manager would not show a video of a working prototype, and the he was doing weird things (like going on a lavish vacation during the final hours of his campaign -- yes, really!), so I truly understand this fear. However, backers often don't consider that there is a risk of losing money when backing KS projects, despite the fact that Kickstarter makes this risk abundantly clear both when registering an account and in their help section. Silence and miscommunication are often indicative of a scam or a poor quality product, so I think that's why many FS-X backers pounced on nearly every word in your recent updates. A second part of the problem is that backers throughout Kickstarter often take the estimated shipping date too literally even though Kickstarter explains that it is a mere estimate that is meant to keep campaigns accountable to ship their product ASAP rather than dragging work into the next millennium. So I don't think it's fair that some backers feel you're late -- development of a new product needs to be right, and that requires rolling with the punches and being flexible. Backers who are truly vested in the viability of a product and company should be flexible. Nobody should ever expect to get their rewards by a specific date -- or at least that's how many of KS's happy backers avoid disappointment and anger. At the same time, you guys need to constantly communicate problems honestly and openly and constantly provide updated timelines so that backers will stand behind you rather than worrying and getting upset. So the communication issues coupled with people's mindset of your being late just seems to have led to suspicious, angry backers. Of course, there's more to the story than that, but that's been my main observations above all in recent weeks.

      I'm not an expert on crowdfunding campaigning, but I've backed enough to take notice of what tends to to work well and what upsets backers. I also can't speak for anyone other than myself here, but I'm hoping that this update will help some of the upset backers regain their confidence in you and the FS-X. I've trusted in the FS-X from the start, and while I agree that you guys could have communicated issues and progress a bit differently, I've never lost faith in the FS-X and your promises even if you're well beyond your initial target date. Even for the most communicative, organized campaign, there are never guarantees of success. Tons of things can go wrong in a split second -- whether it's directly your fault or outside suppliers, manufacturers, and other vendors you've hired to build, ship, and supply everything. Bragi, who is developing The Dash smart wireless headphones, has run a tight ship from the start, and yet they ran into several unexpected problems with suppliers, signal issues, etc. that caused considerable delays. The difference is that they've posted highly detailed, frequent updates with pictures and videos detailing the problems and successes -- and so, backers were supportive rather than upset when Bragi announced the need for delays several times. Backers didn't have to worry that the project would not be completed because Bragi was completely transparent each step of the way. It's impossible to go backwards, but this update makes me hopeful going forward that some backers are starting to trust again. I hope you'll build on this. Everyone here wants to finish the FS-X journey on s high note. I know you'll do a much better job of making backers feel more involved and less alienated/cheated during the next campaign. It's not easy to manage a campaign like this and oversee the development of your product -- but seeing that shiny, finished FS-X will have made it all worth while. ;-)

      @Andreas, the voting would only apply to backers, not individual outsiders. David is also referring to sound/tech websites, magazines, etc. doing independent reviews as well.

      P.S. Ok all, I've made up for not writing in a long time! ;-p lol!!!!

    7. Missing avatar

      ttan on

      @Frankenspiel
      Are there any further plans, if the sound quality of the reviewed units are deemed unsatisfactory? if yes, do you expect further delays resulting from this?

      Thanks.

    8. Missing avatar

      ttan on

      @Frankenspiel
      In your next update, please include photos or videos of:
      1. Close-ups of FS-Xes being assembled.
      2. Larger quantities of assembled FS-X (10 or more)

      Thank you.

    9. Missing avatar

      Andreas Hamm
      Superbacker
      on

      I don't like the voting idea the way it's presented, as people will spread it all over social networks and elsewhere to get their "friends" to vote for them. Or how do you think only backers will be able to vote?

      I'd rather have the backer numbers (and only those who actually have supported this project for at least one FS-X) used for the voting and people can choose like 5 different numbers. Then those voted numbers get counted and the top 5 win.

    10. John H. Halpern, M.D.
      Superbacker
      on

      I'm smiling so much... It almost hurts!!!

    11. Kevin on

      Finally! Something to shout about. If this is genuine then well done! Good PR move, pulled it out of the bag. Let's move on. . .

    12. Peter J on

      I might print this out and stick it on my fridge! :)