New USB Soundcard from Think Penguin - overpriced???

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d.healey
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New USB Soundcard from Think Penguin - overpriced???

Postby d.healey » Tue Jun 04, 2019 3:49 pm

Hi,

Does anyone know why Think Penguin are charging $47 for https://www.thinkpenguin.com/gnu-linux/penguin-usb-20-external-stereo-sound-adapter-gnu-linux-tpe-usbsound.

These kind of devices usually go for around $5 on Amazon but I've seen them as low as $1.20 on AliExpress. I have a couple of these and none of them require proprietary drivers.

So what has Think Penguin done to make this device special? Have they created custom hardware...? According to this https://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=news_item&px=FSF-May-2019-Hardware the USB Sound Card uses a [entry level] C-Media CM119 chipset - https://www.cmedia.com.tw/products/USB20_FULL_SPEED. Since this is a "single chip" solution from C-Media I don't see how it's possible for Think Penguin to have done anything to it that makes it different.

One of the $5 devices I own (Aukey brand) shows up as a Unitek Y-247A device on my OS. Interestingly a device search - https://devicehunt.com/view/type/usb/vendor/0D8C/device/0014 - shows that it also uses a C-Media chipset...

This Vietnamese site appears to be selling exactly the same hardware (chipset and case) for about $4.
https://www.skytech.com.vn/products/card-sound-usb-4-1

I like to support free software/hardware companies but this really seems like Think Penguin is way over charging for an "entry level" usb 2 sound card.
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Michael Willis
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Re: New USB Soundcard from Think Penguin - overpriced???

Postby Michael Willis » Tue Jun 04, 2019 4:49 pm

That's bonkers, on reverb.com you can buy one of the smaller class-compliant interfaces for around the same price, or just a little bit more.

merlyn
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Re: New USB Soundcard from Think Penguin - overpriced???

Postby merlyn » Tue Jun 04, 2019 5:42 pm

It might be a typo. $4.70 would seem more realistic. :)

Or the Free Software Foundation may charge a hefty fee for certification. Someone could actually have tried it on all those systems. I doubt it, though.

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d.healey
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Re: New USB Soundcard from Think Penguin - overpriced???

Postby d.healey » Tue Jun 04, 2019 5:54 pm

merlyn wrote:Someone could actually have tried it on all those systems. I doubt it, though.

Well my FSF membership fee has been wasted then :p
https://librewave.com - Freedom respecting sample libraries and audio plugins
https://www.patreon.com/davidhealey - Sample library creation and HISE scripting tutorials


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