Amp Maker news
The big 2020 reboot. Why do I do it?
After shutting down the web shop to make many changes to the workshop, I have reopened having made some important decisions about the direction of Amp Maker. From this point on, I will focus on amplifier kits and I will clear out all other small components and parts.
Over the next few weeks, many parts will be drastically reduced in price and moved to the Clearance section. Once sold out, these parts will be discontinued, and no longer available to buy. Unfortunately, with just me here and trying to get a decent work/life balance it isn’t possible to maintain viable stocks of the smaller components.
Instead, Amp Maker will focus solely on amplifier kits, chassis and transformers. More choice, better documentation and better availability. I’ve had many ideas for kits – and some kits offline for too long – and the time that I don’t spend buying and packing small parts is time that I will dedicate to kit development.
In addition, there are also new cabinet maker options to bring on board in the next few weeks. Chris (Cabs by Chris) is slowly retiring and so I have lined up some other suppliers. Watch this space for news on that.
It eventually happened, and there are significant changes – and administration issues – for shipping amp parts and kits to customers in the EU and Northern Ireland. Courier companies are increasing their prices to cover their overheads and there’s also a postage costs update.
If you are in the EU/NI you may want to wait until things improve before ordering. If you order now, be aware that there will be extra costs (customs, VAT, administration) that you are likely to be charged by your local post office or delivery company. This may add 20-33% or so to the actual cost of your order – or even more if you order a small item, where an administration cost could easily exceed the item’s value. In addition, courier companies are making mistakes with some deliveries and there are many stories about packages sitting in a courier hub for days while a human tries to work out what paperwork is required for them to proceed.
All of these headaches may get easier with time, but for now the delays and hassles are significant and likely.
If you are outside the EU (Norway, USA, Canada, etc) there should be no change.
As of 18th December, Amp Maker is closed for the Christmas holiday. All orders have shipped. Thanks to all customers for supporting Amp Maker this year, and I wish you all Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
New orders will be possible once the Web shop reopens in January. Please check this News section and the Home Page for details. During the downtime I hope to find the glitch that has caused time-outs and sluggish performance of the shopping cart. In addition, there will be (hopefully) more information on how Brexit affects orders from EU customers.
I am happy to say that I have just put the N5X back on sale (14th November, for shipping from 1st December). However, this is a small batch using stock from previous suppliers. Some suppliers (new and old) are having trouble fulfilling orders promptly due to CV19-related staffing/etc. This means that the next batch of N5X amplifier kits must wait for those delayed parts to come in.
The same delays are affecting some other amp kits, too. As of now, the WF-55 has a short delay waiting for transformers. It’s frustrating, but there’s not a lot I can do at the moment. I may switch to selling amp kits in timed batches in 2021. Please check here from time to time for updates.
Amp Maker is reopening. I have ‘rebooted’ the whole business from shopping cart to courier systems. Just as with a computer reboot, the idea is to get rid of the stuff that doesn’t work, and restart with a clean sheet.
Several important things have changed:
- Working week: Amp Maker now runs for 3 days a week, Tuesday to Thursday. That means no processing or shipping of orders on Monday or Friday.
- Payment methods: I no longer accept debit or credit cards directly, but you can continue to use them via a PayPal account. The alternative is to use online banking – a little slower. (Overseas customers should check with their banks in advance to find out about any processing fees for sending payments to a UK bank.)
- Product availability: In reopening supply lines, there are delays and issues with some suppliers whose factories have been affected by Covid-19 and safe working practices. So there will be some gaps and delays in certain Amp Maker products – especially guitar amplifier kits which are comprised of hundreds of parts from dozens of suppliers.
- VAT: As a cause/effect of reducing working hours, I have decided to limit Amp Maker business to stay under the VAT registration threshold. I have therefore deregistered the company from VAT, and no longer charge VAT on any products sold on the site.
The images below show a few amplifiers picked at random from the Customer Amp Gallery. Click any of them to read more.