A message regarding the current state of affairs at Rosen Sound


Ten years ago, I started fixing your common keyboards out of my garage. From tritons, motifs, fantoms, and K2XXX, I worked my behind off to make my customers happy. To this day, most of those same clients still utilize my services.


Years later, my life succumbed to analog synthesizers, and the quality of work has attracted some truly legendary and stratospheric clients over time. Today, I am proud to have 4 employee’s, work backing us up, and some of the coolest and most revered gear ever under our belt as well as waiting to be fixed.
But as proud as I am of what I’ve accomplished in these years, it’s come with a serious consequence. That consequence is the disappointment we are sure certain individuals feel regarding their gear being completed. Our turn around can be anywhere from 2 weeks to many months at this point, and the demand from those who rely on us on a major league playing field has increased just in the last few weeks alone, not to mention the last year or two. Some may find this to be a cocky thing to say, or say that I am “following the money”, and both would be sort of correct, and I am privileged to be in this predicament. It’s truly the best problem to have, but again, not without consequence. In the end, I need to focus on what will support my wife and son and other family related responsibilities, not to mention my dedication to fostering growth in my team.
It’s important to me to now be upfront and public with these circumstances, and also talk about what we’re going to implement to change the tide.
  1. We will no longer be accepting work from anyone who is not expressly willing to accept that the turn around time is unpredictable, and we need to focus on rush jobs (of which there are many) and certain clients who bring so much work to us that we rely on their business. Not to mention tour work and full restorations. Now, I need to clarify this. We are not choosing or shafting anyone based on their social or musical status. Simply put, there are entities who make up a large portion of our business dealings, and often they are waiting just as long as you might for certain pieces; but more often than not, these specific entities have requested a certain amount of exclusivity to ensure certain projects are completed in a certain critical time frame. You can compare this scenario to a local print shop that serves it’s local community, but also serves a major corporation like Disney (for example). They’re happy to print your photos over night, but if Disney calls, you might have to wait an extra day. This is how small business’s like ours can survive, and additionally, these clients are who help us grow as a business. This does not mean we will “never get to your gear” or we’re “blowing you off”, it just means we can’t guarantee two weeks will be two weeks (but dammit we will try for that to be the case). Additionally, this is focused to those that cannot accept that employee emergencies happen that affect schedule, and we don’t reassign jobs until it’s absolutely imperative to do so.
  2. We are going to eliminate the up-front bench charge requirement. We do not have issues with most of our clients paying their bills but we have a very big problem with average-joe who cannot accept legitimate hold-ups and real troubleshooting time when they’re already $100 into the repair work. Additionally, this will give people the option to grab their gear “as is” and do as they will with it and bring it back later if they choose without the odd-feelings because of said bench fee. This doesn’t mean un-finished repairs are free, it just means you’ll owe us for our time before you can take it home with no money down. As far as larger deposits for CS-80’s, full restorations, and custom work (currently starting at $1000), those will continue because of their storage, man power, and other liabilities.
  3. Hours-spent on gear will be charged for. We cannot grow if we continue charging 4 hours on a job that actually took 8. These are very expensive instruments in general and if a client is not expressly willing to compensate for our shop’s rate where we do a substantial amount of work to do the job right, there are most definitely now less-expensive and worse options in the Los Angeles area to get your gear going “good enough” as some need. We offer a lifetime warranty on our repair work, and we can do that because we give these instruments the service they deserve. If you want to save a dime and risk your gear with a 30 day warranty, there are other options around besides our shop.
  4. Estimates will be just that, estimates. I can’t stress this enough. If the average OBX costs $2 to fix, I can’t guarantee yours won’t cost $4. All is takes is for some tech-disaster from 1990 to throw an average job into overdrive, and that’s not our problem. And in addition to that, we won’t jeopardize our reputation for quality and complete service just to honor the estimate. Inevitably, this will divide the public for who uses our services. We want to work with those you want their gear serviced thoroughly and only once, and the only way to do that is to do it right. No exceptions.
  5. We will let go without any hesitation any individual or entity who wishes to push us against the wall by pulling some BS customer service crap. My clients know I am a nice and reasonable guy who bends over backwards for his clients and just wants to work with nice and reasonable people who are respectful. If you want to try and save a buck saying a repair took too long when you and I both know it was complicated as all hell, we will promptly show you the door and never allow you back. This is no joke; we are done with the bed-wetters.
  6. We will no longer be accepting Korg Polysix synthesizers with KLM-367 issues unless it is agreed upon in advance that the board will be replaced instead of futzed with. These are piling up and we just cant responsibly take more in unless this condition is understood.
In the short term, we feel it’s the right thing to do to return bench fee’s to those who need to pick up their broken gear. The big exception is to gear that has been worked on and is still not finished. We charged the bench fee to cover our first hour of labor, and we stand by that. If your gear has come in the last month or so while we were dealing with chrome & modular-hell, theres a small chance it hasn’t been touched, so get in touch if you want to try another shop. No hard feelings from us and we can even try and point you in the right direction.
And here’s some things that are staying the same or need reiteration:
  1. First and most paramount is the quality of service you and your gear will receive. Our lifetime warranty on work performed will remain, and we will continue to do the balls-to-the-wall repair work we’re known to do.
  2. We still want your business because we love this gear and want it to work as well as possible. Please, understand that we do not have any interest in having 10 polysix’s and 5 CS80’s lined up in the shelves. All these things here represent gear that should be used by their owners and for us, unfinished work orders that need to be completed in order for us to put food on the table. Please, don’t accuse us of hoarding your gear or “holding it hostage” as one bed-wetter put it. We wan’t your money more than we wan’t your gear sitting here, that much I can assure you 110%.
  3. Juno 106 services will continue on with their $150, $300, and $550 flat rate options with the same fast turn around. We have an employee who exclusively does Juno’s.
  4. Big restoration work, CS-80’s, and custom work (with some exceptions) will still require a minimum of $1000 due up front and non-refundable.
  5. We’re still open to the public, but please just note everything above. We’re going to be just a little tougher on the “disclaimer” side of things and not sugar coat it. If spelling this all out publicly does not change the tide, we’re absolutely considering closing off the public for a while and only working for who we work for, repeats, and people with a recommendation
  6. Sales will continue to be commission based unless there is a  special case where the piece is fully working. We want to explain this comprehensively: It is a bad idea for us to work on gear with intention to sell it just to have it sitting on a shelf collecting dust. For one, this distracts us from working on repair work that is already backed up. Secondly, by the time someone comes in to buy it, the dust has settled to the point that it’s not as perfect as it was when we fixed it. We have a full suite of rental gear to demo and sometimes have the same gear for sale or a lead on one for you. We will continue to charge in full for the gear up front without the option to opt out. We are just too busy to interrupt our work flow with those uncertainties. Please note, we heavily vet the gear we keep in stock for sale and ensure there is no chance in hell that the repairs to it wouldn’t be successful to have a high quality instrument that you’ve paid probably above-market price for. Most of the time, the gear is 80% complete if I can work on it at home or on a weekend while it awaits sale. While we try to complete gear within 2 weeks of a cleared payment, it isn’t always the case. Please know that before buying gear from us.


Just need to add this in: this post is full of words that in general won’t matter if you want your gear fixed right and don’t mind a wait. We even regularly offer free loaners for sessions if the turn around becomes excessive because of surprises in the work flow. We are happy to work with anyone who is happy to work with us, I can’t stress that enough. The amount of peace and love I feel with 90% of my clients makes this whole thing worth it for me on a “will to live” level, but the 10% who make this the worst job on earth and causing me extreme anxiety, we invite you to go elsewhere.
If you have questions, as always, shoot me an email to rob@rosensound.com or give me a call. We’re always happy to answer the phone, and from here on out, we’re just going to be a lot heavier handed in the disclaimer department. 
Thanks for your continued support
– Rob Rosen