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Hana Umami Red

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by draden1, Sep 10, 2020.

  1. draden1

    draden1 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Des Moines, IA
    As a previous SL owner and current ML user, I find this to be very interesting news. MSRP is $3950 which is an enormous leap compared to Hana’s current carts. I hope the Umami will perform as highly as the SL and ML do compared to the competition at their respective price points.

    HANA Umami Red MC Cartridge | Products | Musical Surroundings
     
    displayname likes this.
  2. bajaed

    bajaed Forum Resident

    I was about to create a thread asking if there were any reviews or if any members had heard it. Out of my price range but would love to hear one.

    It sure looks good lol!
     
    displayname likes this.
  3. Old Zorki II

    Old Zorki II Storm Watcher

    Location:
    near Tampa, FL
    Hana was kind of semi-budget cartridge, a good all arounder with street prices 600-1000 range. This is really huge jump...
     
    Andy Saunders likes this.
  4. blakep

    blakep Forum Resident

    The nature of the "high end" anymore. Big price tags. You better have the system (and wallet) for it.

    Excel Sound, who make the Hana's, have been in the cartridge business for 50 years and have
    done some very high end stuff in the past, including some of the Argent cartridges, the SAEC upper
    end cartridges (I just sent an SAEC C1 in for retip) and the current Etsuros.

    This one seems to slot in just below the bottom of the Etsuro lineup.
     
  5. Pythonman

    Pythonman Forum Resident

    Location:
    Florida
    If I could afford a Umami I’d save a little more for the Etsuro Blue.
     
    Andy Saunders likes this.
  6. Rolltide

    Rolltide Forum Resident

    Location:
    Vallejo, CA
    Gosh, a Japanese phono cartridge manufacturer just went ahead and listed both 100hz and 10hz compliance like it wasn't even a thing. No guessing on which is which, no making up formulas in my head, etc. I never thought I'd see the day.

    Also interesting is the Samarium Cobalt, makes me wonder if they're aiming for a more Koetsu style sound.
     
    Big Blue, Benzion, HiFi Guy and 3 others like this.
  7. draden1

    draden1 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Des Moines, IA
    Since this releases on 9/22, we unfortunately won’t be hearing from users for awhile. The increased price point puts this in competition with a lot of excellent cartridges, I’m hoping this punches above its weight class.
     
    displayname, Mobs and HiFi Guy like this.
  8. Mr_J

    Mr_J Active Member

    Location:
    United Kingdom
    displayname likes this.
  9. Old Zorki II

    Old Zorki II Storm Watcher

    Location:
    near Tampa, FL
    James Forte likes this.
  10. Andy Saunders

    Andy Saunders Forum Resident

    Location:
    England

    What is that?:)
     
  11. Pythonman

    Pythonman Forum Resident

    Location:
    Florida
  12. draden1

    draden1 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Des Moines, IA
    I’m glad to see a review so quickly, makes me curious to see a few more.
     
  13. daytona600

    daytona600 Forum Resident

    Location:
    UK
    Hana & Etsuro both are made by excel corp
     
    Pythonman likes this.
  14. displayname

    displayname Forum Resident

    Location:
    Dallas
    This feels like an appropriate price jump to me. I like it when manufacturers make a very clear and obvious growth of a single line, vs companies that offer several similar items at various price points that often try to please everyone, but seemingly also become a master of none.
     
    HiFi Guy likes this.
  15. Old Zorki II

    Old Zorki II Storm Watcher

    Location:
    near Tampa, FL
    Perhaps. But those cartridges are ultimate luxury items. This is why Toyota has Lexus, thus is why 8k Yamaha receivers are not hot sellers, etc. Establishing brand with offerings from inexpensive to very pricey is not a sure thing.
     
  16. displayname

    displayname Forum Resident

    Location:
    Dallas
    I don't think anyone is expecting the Umami to be a hot seller, especially compared to their more affordable offerings. But as long as it's competitive within it's price point, which Exel has done well, then it will likely meet expectations. I also have more faith in Hana's ability to execute on a cartridge at this level due to their extensive history.
    Given the wide reception of the Hana line at all existing price points, I think it fully makes sense for them to offer a next step in the customer journey, especially if they are finding a number of their customers are from the ML/MH into the higher luxury lines of other brands.
    And the biggest advantage Excel has is their history of producing some of these luxury cartridges, giving them insights not only to design, but also to production numbers.
     
    Big Blue likes this.
  17. displayname

    displayname Forum Resident

    Location:
    Dallas
    I guess what I'm really saying is yes, it is a big price jump, but it doesn't feel like an inappropriate or unrealistic price jump.
    And I also like that they aren't creating confusion in their own line. I guess they could have done something in the $2500 range, and maybe they will. But for those ready to move beyond the ML, this jump doesn't feel completely out of reach in my opinion. Granted, I'm not in a position to make that jump, but knowing people who are it really just doesn't feel like an out of the question price point.
     
    Big Blue likes this.
  18. Old Zorki II

    Old Zorki II Storm Watcher

    Location:
    near Tampa, FL
    I have no doubts that Excel can produce excellent cartridges or this Hana Red will not be up to standards of pricey offerings of other brands. That was not my point.
     
    displayname likes this.
  19. Dennis0675

    Dennis0675 Night flyer

    Location:
    Ohio
    Is it the parts or labor that causes this cart to be three times more expensive than everything else they make? Or...is it a marketing tactic to be considered a high end cart?
     
  20. Old Zorki II

    Old Zorki II Storm Watcher

    Location:
    near Tampa, FL
    Well, definitely not materials. Duralumin for body they wrote so many praises about for example is $2/kg wholesale and extremely easy to work with.
    So one can assume it is engineering and metalious and complex manual work.
     
  21. displayname

    displayname Forum Resident

    Location:
    Dallas
    Totally agree with this @Old Zorki II. It's terrible to measure the value of any hifi product based on materials costs. Engineering, design, and labor to hand build is where the big expenses are. They also mention that parts are CNC milled... which means you have to have access to a CNC, which is not cheap. Also need to consider that as prices go up, generally tolerances get tighter as well. That takes time, effort, and results in higher cost/unit.

    Another factor to consider is that Excel will never sell as many of these compared to their lower prices options, which is expected. That reduces their economies of scale, both from a production and advertising standpoint.

    I think @Dennis0675's question about the price just being a marketing tactic is a little over generalized if anyone believes that. I do think some companies raise prices on select items purely to maintain a status, but I don't believe that is a major factor with this item. The materials and associated engineering and production upgrades appear readily available by simply looking at the spec sheet.
     
  22. Dennis0675

    Dennis0675 Night flyer

    Location:
    Ohio
    It was a silly question on my part, the only reason they are asking $4,000 is because that is what they think people will pay. It's not like it costs ortofon twice as much to make a 2m blue than it does a 2m red. nore 8 times as much to make a 2m Black.

    And it's not like it would matter to me if it cost them $3,000 a cart to make this new model, I would buy it based on how it performs relative to other carts at the same price point.

    but...they already have employees and production facilities, I doubt they are looking at the same profit margins for this as they are the Hana.
     
  23. Phil Thien

    Phil Thien Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    The term is luxury pricing, where price becomes a feature.

    Not saying that is going on here, I haven't heard one.
     
    displayname likes this.
  24. displayname

    displayname Forum Resident

    Location:
    Dallas
    I still think you're underestimating the costs of engineering, QC, etc. But The 2M series is a good example because so much more of the cartridges are the same.

    With this Umami red at least the design and nearly 100% of the materials are unique to this cartridge in the Hana line. However, the fact that it's titled "Umami Red" makes me think we might see other versions coming. I wouldn't mind an Umami series to compliment the E/S/M series of carts. Maybe one at $2,500, one at $4000, and one at $5,500. Again, I'm not shopping in those ranges, but that would be a pretty robust product line.
     
  25. Dennis0675

    Dennis0675 Night flyer

    Location:
    Ohio
    Hana SL is about $750 retail. What do you think the retail markup is? 30%? Wholesale cost of about $500? Total overhead for production would be about $100 each? It would seem reasonable they would net $400 for a product that retails for $750 and that would include all the engineering and QC required to make that LOMC cart. There is no scenario where the jump to $4,000 retail is happening because of the hit they took to engineer or manufacture this new LOMC cart.
     
    displayname likes this.

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