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Second Annual CoachArt Children’s Benefit in San Francisco

coachart new logo

CoachArt is a non-profit organization that creates a transformative arts and athletics community for families impacted by childhood chronic illness. On April 23, 2015 the CoachArt Children’s Benefit will be honoring Velodyne friend Rod Streater, wide receiver for the Oakland Raiders, as well as Selina Tabbacowala, President and CTO of SurveyMonkey for dedication to the community and children of CoachArt. Velodyne is proud to participate in the event this year.

The benefit will be held at The Terra Gallery, 511 Harrison St., San Francisco. The night will begin with a cocktail hour featuring live performances by CoachArt children followed by  a silent auction and  dinner starting at 6pm. Velodyne will sponsor the after-party from 9:00pm-12:00am. We are pleased to announce the entertainment for the after-party will feature a performance by Velodyne friend and 5-time Grammy Nominee, Ashanti Floyd. “The Mad Violinist”, as he is known, has an amazing set planned that will bring the house down. Tickets are available for $25, which includes open bar and specialty desserts. Don’t miss out on this rare opportunity to see The Mad Violinist perform in the San Francisco Bay Area!


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Rod Streater Partners with Velodyne Acoustics


Velodyne is very excited about our new brand ambassador, Rod Streater, wide receiver for the Oakland Raiders. Rod has collaborated with Velodyne on our newest headphone line, the vElement. Rod will be aligned with our chrome electro-plated headphone which is not yet available for sale. The vElement made an appearance in last week’s New York Fashion Week, during Dom Streater’s runway show.

in New York February, 13, 2015. INSIDER IMAGES/Keith Bedford

Rod appealed to us not only for his skills on the field, but his work with children and the community. We recently partnered with Rod and the Rod Streater Foundation at an event with CoachArt at Disney Interactive where we presented 30 chronically ill children with gift bags that included vFree headphones. We are looking forward to many more of events like this in the upcoming months.

Check out Rod’s promotional video for Velodyne and stay tuned for more exciting announcements.



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How to Spend $1,000 Wisely

dollar signYou might be reading this and thinking to yourself, “When I am going to have an extra $1,000 to spend however I wish?” Tax season is approaching and many of people out there will be getting modest refunds and wondering whatto do with that extra money.  I am not a financial advisor but I have some insight as what you can do if you find yourself with extra money.

In my opinion, the smartest way for you to spend your extra $1,000 is to pay down debt. Paying down debt ahead of schedule is really never a bad idea. This is especially true for credit card debt as it is probably the worst kind of debt you can have. Making the minimum payments on a credit card will cost you substantially more money in the long-run than in it would to just pay down the principal now. Let’s you have $1,500 in credit card debt. Your interest rate is 19% APR and you are paying $75 a month. It will take you 25 months…that’s over two years to pay off the credit card. It will also cost you $317 in interest over the roughly two years to pay this off. Apply your thousand dollars to this and pay the debt down to $500 and you will save yourself nearly $300 in interest over the life of the loan. Not a bad way to spend a thousand bucks, huh?

The next thing I would recommend you to do with your money after paying down debt would be to invest it. Now what you invest in is entirely up to you however unless you really know what you’re doing I would not advise you to pick individual stocks invest in. Instead, consider invest in passively managed ETF’s (exchange traded funds) or index funds. By putting your money here you achieve diversification and earn the return on the market which is usually around 10%. If you are not comfortable investing in the stock market you can always buy U.S. treasuries which are usually regarded as the safest investment in the world. While the return on treasures is pretty low they are a safe a place to park your money and save it for a rainy day.

Finally, the last thing that you can do with a $1,000 cash is to treat yourself something nice. There are a lot of things that your spend $1000 on. Perhaps a you are in need of a new computer or TV. Or why not get yourself a new Velodyne subwoofer and pair of headphones? A WI-Q 12” and a pair of vPulse is not a bad way to spend $1,000 on yourself.

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We’ve Been Eggied!

Thomas Chung, Erika Austin and Henry Le surrounded by Newegg Management and our "Eggie"

Thomas Chung, Erika Austin and Henry Le surrounded by Newegg Management and our “Eggie”

Velodyne was honored to be a part of the 11th Annual Eggie Awards during CES in Las Vegas earlier this month. Newegg shared their sucess with all of their partners at the swanky club XS  with food, swag and open bar. Velodyne rubbed elbows with companies like Logitech, Intel, AMD, and Microsoft. We were awarded the Best Marketplace Brand Partner for 2014. Such a great honor and fun celebration for everyone involved. Visit Newegg’s blog to read more about the Eggies.

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Velodyne Supports Breast Cancer Research


Last month, Velodyne ran a special promotion on our pink vPulse headphones. In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness month, we sold our pink in-ear headphones in a 2-for-$50 promotion with a portion of the proceeds going to Breast Cancer Research. We are proudly donating to our organization of choice, the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. We wanted to go beyond providing awareness and contribute to a foundation actively working towards prevention and a cure for this disease. A woman in the U.S. is diagnosed with breast cancer every 2 minutes and there are nearly 3 million survivors here in the U.S. alone according to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation website.

“In 2014-2015, BCRF will award $58.6 million in annual grants to 222 scientists from top universities and medical institutions around the globe. In addition, $11.6 million has been committed to the international Founder’s Fund project focused on metastasis.” Mestasis is the spreading of cancer or tumors to other parts of the body than the place it first started. With sound financial efficiency (88% of their funds go to actual breast cancer research), this foundation seemed to be the best to receive our proceeds out of the many choices available.

If you are interested in making a donation to this foundation, please visit their donation page on their website.


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The Gray Market: The Issue Really is Black & White



The so-called “gray market” is many things, but it certainly isn’t colorless.

Wikipedia puts it succinctly: the gray market consists of “distribution channels which, while legal, are unofficial, unauthorized, or unintended by the original manufacturer.”

Unauthorized dealers see nothing but green. Manufacturers, like Velodyne, see red. And consumers need to notice the flashing yellow signs. Indeed, caution ought to be the watchword; it’s buyer beware, big time.

The gray market might be attractive for some borderline players in the channel, and it’s superficially appealing to consumers, typically through lower prices or easier access to seemingly identical merchandise.

But the gray market isn’t actually a very friendly place for anyone. And the issues that confront consumers are, in fact, pretty black and white. People buying from unauthorized dealers run the risk of ending up with prototypes or other less-than-final products, offered as the real deal.

In his recent Business Law Todayarticle, “Dealing with Unauthorized Online Dealers: Sales of ‘Genuine’ Products,” attorney Robert W. Payneexplores the challenges manufacturers face from unauthorized online retail and the legal nuances of unauthorized selling:

Payne ought to know. He’s a partner in the law firm of LaRiviere, Grubman & Payne, LLP in Monterey, Calif. He practices intellectual property law, including copyright, trademark, and patent litigation. Here’s his take:
Online sellers (some authorized by the manufacturer; many more not authorized) now have low-cost, direct access to consumers through their own websites and through online market places such as, eBay, and This has led to a tsunami of online dealers infringing intellectual property rights.
While many products sold by unauthorized online retailers are counterfeits, some sell products actually manufactured by and for the trademark owner. The sale by unauthorized dealers of “genuine” goods poses the greatest legal challenge to makers of well-known brands. It may or may not be a bigger business challenge, but counterfeits do not pose serious legal issues; “genuine” goods, on the other hand, are another matter. Further, the unauthorized sale of “genuine” goods is exploding on the Internet…

Such unauthorized dealers compete unfairly in a sense. They are essentially “free riders.” They have minimal overhead and do not invest significantly in customer service, showrooms, quality, or advertising. Nevertheless, unauthorized dealers reap the benefits of such efforts. They trade off the brand owner’s hard-earned reputation for quality and customer service. Not having the same overhead, they can undercut authorized dealers on price, driving prices down with their unfair advantage and making it difficult for authorized dealers (and ultimately the brand owner itself) to make a profit. Additionally, the product may differ in some way, such as lacking warranty protection. It is this differential in service and quality of promotion and quality inherent in a system of authorized dealerships which needs to be protected. 

We could not agree more. The adage about something sounding “too good to be true” definitely applies here. The moral: know what you’re buying and from whom. If you do, you can’t lose.


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Another Great CES In 2014

welcometoCES2014This year’s International CES was great for Velodyne. We were able to hold many face to face meetings with our worldwide suppliers and distributors. We really do value our relationships and it’s nice to be able to solidify our partnerships in this manner rather than the usual Skype call. We also had the opportunity to connect with the press directly at Unveiled and conduct recorded and live-streaming interviews.


IMG_4222During the course of the week, we were able to show off many of our new products. In addition to our vLeve, vBold and vQuiet, we had our vFit on hand. It had literally just come in, and is technically still not available, but our first fitness headphone was well-received. Our new wireless sub, the Wi-Q, was a big hit. We gave it front-and-center status in our suite at the Venetian, and are sending out several units for reviews. We also had many subs in finishes the public has not seen from Velodyne before. We had subwoofers in gold, red and purple metallic. Additionally we had a subwoofer wrapped in leather. CES gives us the ideal opportunity to get feedback from both the press and our customers on potential new products. Velodyne personnel and staff who really know our products inside and out were on hand to answer technical questions regarding our audio equipment. The constant flow of traffic through the suite was exciting and kept us going all week long.

IMG_4264A definite highlight was receiving the Editor’s Choice Award from Stereowise Plus. Velodyne President, Marta Hall was on-hand to receive the award personally.

Another highlight was Marta Hall’s interview on a webcast for Geekbeat.TV. She so eloquently shared information about our company and our three divisions, as well as our headphones and our artist skins. The exciting part for most was when she announced we would be giving our free headphones to everyone who came to our website to register for our newsletter. It was incredible – the response we received was outstanding. In Velodyne’s spirit of giving, it is just another fun way we can share our great products with the public.


IMG_4236Due to some recent announcements by the Ford Motor Co., we had David Oroshnik from our LiDAR division present at the show this year. Our LiDAR car was on display in the Sands Ballroom, where thousands of onlookers each day could see our technology scan the environment in real-time, 3D, on a large flat screen. David held plenty of meetings and press interviews for this division and answered all of the product questions regarding our patented LiDAR technology as well. The questions ranged from basic, “What’s that?” to the very complicated. It was quite a busy spot to be as we also had our headphones and skins on display complete with a listening station.

IMG_4340Velodyne is a fun and intrinsically artistic company. We had one of our friends and fans, Marquette King, punter from the Oakland Raiders on hand to take photos, sign autographs and discuss his love of the brand. We also had two talented dancers from SCC Presents reign in the crowd and distribute literature. There was never a dull moment for us in the Ballroom.

IMG_4367We also participated in the Fashionware wearable tech fashion show again this year. This show is “growing up”. With it’s own room dedicated to the show in the North Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center, this year’s presentation had a full runway, modern lighting, 2 large screens and a hosted bar and warm appetizers. We had two models in the show, one wearing our vBold bluetooth headphone, and the other wearing our vFree. Both models wore outfits that were featured from other wearable tech companies. This was the perfect environment for us to show our products as fashion and technology are at the core of who we are. It was an honor to participate in this event.

How will we top CES 2014? We now have almost a whole year to prepare for next year’s show. We will need every last minute. Until then, Las Vegas. Viva!


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Work Off Holiday Excess With The vFit

3_blueRunning is my personal passion, but after family and work it unfortunately comes in third on my list of priorities. However, since running is my “ME” time, I make the most of it. If I’m not running with a friend, thus making a social event out of it, I am running with headphones. When I’m running with my music, I am making my own personal party out of my run.

I won’t lie when I say that the vFit is my most anticipated Velodyne product release to date. The vPulse is an amazing, well-reviewed in-ear headphone which I have used to work out but the vFit is a fitness-targeted headphone. The most attractive feature of these headphones for me are the sport ear hook to keep the headphones on your ears. Plus the vFit comes with 3 sizes of ear tips in 2 different colors to ensure proper fit. The cord clip to prevent flopping up and down when running or on an elliptical trainer at the gym is key.

From a technical standpoint, I am impressed these headphones, like the vPulse, come with a mic for phone calls and controls which are located on the cord. The 10 mm driver coupled with a 20hz-20Khz frequency response means incredible sound, living up to vPulse standards.

Cosmetically speaking, the initial offerings of blue and pink on black should meet the needs of most fitness enthusiasts who require good sound until other colors are released. These headphones should be available in time for holiday shopping so stay tuned. I know I will!


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New From Velodyne: vBold Bluetooth Headphones


Satin Silver vBold

Satin Silver vBold

Just in time for the holidays, Velodyne is launching our sophomore wireless headphone effort, the vBold. The vBold is conveniently compatible with Apple products and Bluetooth compatible devices. Their unique design is credited to Marta Hall, our President and recognized international artist. Similar to the vFree, the vBold have intuitive on-ear controls which set these headphones apart from most headphones on the market. These headphones are available in matte black and satin silver and fold up into a carrying pouch included in the box.

Some noteworthy features of the vBold are the re-chargeable battery which lasts over 10 hours, with the flexibility to use them wired if needed (wire included). The microphone in the headphone can be used for phone calls as well as online gaming. The convenience to move freely while talking on the phone, hands-free is priceless. The Bluetooth connectivity goes to a range of 30+ feet so the ability to function untethered becomes extremely easy.

Want to impress your friend or loved one with an amazing gift for the holidays? Go bold. vBold.

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