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So I've been told the US Gov has decided Neodymium is a precious metal. Yay!

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Flux Jetson, Jul 30, 2012.

  1. I suppose that might get one to expect higher prices. I've been told by a competent resource that the material itself has seen a 10x cost increase.

    Now I don't know if that meant the raw-form, or the actual produced magnet, or the entire speaker itself. I guess it really doesn't matter, in any case it will mean increased prices for Neo-equipped cabs.

    I know of one manufacturer that is for sure dropping neo speakers from their entire lineup. To the point that they are totally redesigning their entire cab lineup to better suit ceramic magnet speakers.

    I would imagine that classifying Neodymium to "precious metal status" has all kinds of cost-increasing affects. Funny how nothing about the material has changed at all, other than classification. And somehow "that alone" makes it more expensive. It's still the same stuff we've been buying for years - it's no better than it was last year. But now it's "called" something different so it's now worth more.

    This world is ridiculous. Fleece the sheep.

  2. 1958Bassman


    Oct 20, 2007
    I was told, by the local Fender rep, that China is where most of the Neodymium used comes from and they increased their export fees by about 300%. That immediately made it uneconomical to use.

    AlNiCo use stopped in the '60s because Cobalt was deemed a "strategic material' during the Cold War. Another material that was almost unused in civilian applications, starting not long before this point is Titanium, which was used extensively in the SR-71 Blackbird. The thing I find amusing is that most titanium came from the former USSR at the time.
  3. Passinwind

    Passinwind I know nothing. Commercial User

    Dec 3, 2003
    Columbia River Gorge, WA.
    Owner/Designer &Toaster Tech Passinwind Electronics
  4. The big user of Neo is wind turbines and similar industrial products.
    The loudspeaker industry is a very minor consumer in this market.
  5. BogeyBass

    BogeyBass SUSPENDED

    Sep 14, 2010
    oh yah wind turbines everywhere.

    totally useless for computer hardrives and electric motors.
    nobody really uses those.

    the biggest market is really strong refrigerator magnets.
    and since they are so strong the can attach cute shapes like strawberries and butterflies , or picture frames and daily reminders.

    since everyone has a fridge china decided to control this market.
  6. Bardley


    Nov 16, 2007
    Louisville, KY
    From what I understand, wind turbines can use several hundred pounds of neo per turbine when hard drives and other electronics use a tiny amount.
  7. seamonkey


    Aug 6, 2004
    Neodymium is not rare, but it's hard to extract.

    The price goes up and down because it's a controlled market. If new mines were opened, the people controlling the market would drop the price to drive them out of business.

    Neo and Ceramic magnets are mainly iron. small amounts of neodymium and boron mixed in to get a Neo magnet.

    Getting that formula just write it the tricky part. There is still a lot of research going on.

    Iron Nitrogen magnets are the strongest, neither is rare, but manufacturing such a magnet is a real challenge.
  8. Russell L

    Russell L

    Mar 5, 2011
    Cayce, SC
    I don't care. I'm still buying. Anything to reduce weight. Plus, neo allows speaker designers to do some things they couldn't before.
  9. guy n. cognito

    guy n. cognito Secret Agent Member Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2005
    Nashville, TN
    Yep. There are even some people out there that believe everything they hear. ;)
  10. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    It's all SGD David's fault!
  11. Vandy

    Vandy Banned

    Dec 24, 2011
    Strategically, "we" can't be relying on foreign goods for our infrastructure. As musicians, that's neodymium. Next, it'll be inflatable Christmas decorations that we need for our lawns . . .
    Or, the voices for our phones . . . :D
  12. JehuJava

    JehuJava Bass Frequency Technician

    Oct 15, 2002
    Oakland, CA
    Fabrique en Chine! It's everywhere...
  13. mulchor


    Apr 21, 2010
    St Pete, FL
    good thread.
  14. basscooker

    basscooker Commercial User

    Apr 11, 2010
    cincy ky
    Owner, ChopShopAmps
    maybe a stoopit question, mebe off topic, but...

    if we need hundreds of pounds of neo to build a wind turbine, to help get away from importing to produce energy, and we import the neo......
  15. ScottTunes

    ScottTunes Gear-A-Holic

    Feb 7, 2011
    So Cal
    Appears to follow the "damned if you do, damned if you don't" philosophy...
  16. basscooker

    basscooker Commercial User

    Apr 11, 2010
    cincy ky
    Owner, ChopShopAmps
    FINE. i'll solve this. *****heads to the backyard with a shovel, pickaxe and metal detector*****
  17. JehuJava

    JehuJava Bass Frequency Technician

    Oct 15, 2002
    Oakland, CA
    The San Francisco bay bridge is being rebuilt with Chinese manufactured bridge segments.

    A bit off topic but...
  18. Can't wait till we start refining those several million metric tons of the stuff we found in Brazil!!!
  19. petrus61

    petrus61 Supporting Member

    Soon we can all start pawning our magnets. Can't wait to see Big Hoss score on a sweet GKMB!
  20. Primakurtz

    Primakurtz Registered Nihilist

    Nov 23, 2011
    Denver, Colorado
    Precious, or strategic? Never heard of the Feds deciding to classify anything as "precious"...

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