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stupid manufacturer's tricks

Discussion in 'Pro Audio Equipment' started by hollywood_steve, Jul 16, 2001.

  1. hollywood_steve

    hollywood_steve Active Member

    The manufacturer will remain nameless, because even though they committed error after error, they were extremely apologetic and pleasant on the phone and eventually resolved the situation completely.

    This Monday, I received a brand new, moderately expensive piece of outboard gear via FEDEX. This is a very popular and well regarded unit and I was looking forward to putting it to use immediately. However, when I went to remove it from the carton, I noticed that the faceplate had a very large bend in it that resulted in a 3/8" gap between the faceplate and the chassis. The faceplate was attached at either end, but it curved out in the middle; far enough to insert my little finger between the faceplate and the chassis.
    I put the unit down and sent off an email. Even though it was well after business hours, I got an email back that same evening providing me with the name and phone number of a customer service rep. The next day we talked, he apologized for the incovenience, and requested that I ship the unit back to them via overnight, at their expense. They would repair it immediately and overnight it right back. And that's exactly what we did. I shipped it out on Tuesday, they received it on Wednesday, repaired it and shipped it back out that night. Thursady morning, the package is back on my kitchen table. I open the box up and the faceplate is perfectly straight - they didn't bother trying to repair the old one, they gave me a new plate. Then I went to mount it in my rack - and the chassis almost fell on the floor! They had only installed two of the four screws holding the faceplate to the chassis!
    I'm not completely helpless, if the manufacturer could provide me with the size and thread type of the screw, I could purchase and install the two missing screws myself. So I called them up and let them know that they forgot to install the screws and would they please find out what type of screws I needed to buy? But then we realized that due to the unique finish of the unit, I could not easily find screws to match the finish. So, Friday morning, I received another Fedex package, this one containing two screws!!! $13 to ship 3 cents worth of machine screws. When you add up all of the customer servie rep's time, the service department's time and over $100 in FEDEX charges, I can be pretty sure that the manufacturer has already burned through all of their profit on my unit. And my warranty still has 358 days to go!

    steve
    sjp@pacbell.net
     
  2. anonymous

    anonymous Guests

    No Steve, your warranty still had 365 days to go. The warranty clock starts when you get a functioning product. However, even with their stellar 'customer service' if they continue that level of 'quality control', they probably won't be around for another year.

    We have one manufacturer on our roster that has a failure rate approaching 60%. Now we burn the stuff in for an extra week to 10 days prior to shipment, retest it, then send the broken ones back to the factory. Literally, we order 10 to stock 4. If the manufacturer followed a similar proceedure, then there would be far less shipping involved, far less hassle, and far less expense on their end as well as ours.

    Something tells me that they'll be around in a year, but I seriously doubt we'll be seeing them at the trade shows in 5 years.
     
  3. try2break

    try2break Guest

    Since you don't want to say it, I want to speculate. Is it UA?
     
  4. atlasproaudio

    atlasproaudio Active Member

    Originally posted by try2break:
    Since you don't want to say it, I want to speculate. Is it UA?

    Stop Speculating, Mercenary Audio does not sell UA...so it is obviously another manufacturer they sell that Fletcher is speaking of. All of the UA units we have had through here have been extremely consistent and built like tanks. Business policy does not necessarily dictate product quality.

    Regards,
    Nathan Eldred
    Atlas Pro Audio, Inc.
    http://www.atlasproaudio.com
     
  5. anonymous

    anonymous Guests

    Nathan was absolutely correct when he stated: "Business policy does not necessarily dictate product quality." As far as I've seen, UA's build quality is fine, it's just their idea of a marketing department that could use a little fine tuning [like with a flamethrower].

    You can guess which MFG.s we've have had QC problems with to your heart's content, but I will neither confirm nor deny if you are correct. Fact is, the MFG. with the really high failure rate is very interested in working toward solving the problem. This is a good thing [in our book]. Until we start seeing 100% perfection on a regular basis, we'll continue the 'burn-in' proceedure.

    We do test every bit of gear that goes through here [with the exception of RNC's...and seeing as we've only had 2 failures in well over 1000 units, I'd say that they're a pretty safe bet], you'll never get a sealed box from our place...you'll also have fewer problems with the stuff you get from our joint, which is how we can 'double the warrantee without going broke.
     
  6. atlasproaudio

    atlasproaudio Active Member

    Originally posted by Fletcher:

    ...and seeing as we've only had 2 failures in well over 1000 units, I'd say that they're a pretty safe bet], you'll never get a sealed box from our place...you'll also have fewer problems with the stuff you get from our joint, which is how we can 'double the warrantee without going broke.


    Providing that the unit works when it is out the door, the chances of it failing sans power surge or abuse is slim to none in its first few years (I would be seriously pissed if any of this gear had a track record like that). Hell, with the quality of the top manufacturers, it would almost be safe to have a lifetime warranty on a unit...although that would present some obvious problems in the long term future for all involved.

    Regards
    Nathan Eldred
    Atlas Pro Audio, Inc.
    http://www.atlasproaudio.com
     
  7. MPlancke

    MPlancke Member

    Originally posted by Fletcher:
    We do test every bit of gear that goes through here [with the exception of RNC's...and seeing as we've only had 2 failures in well over 1000 units, I'd say that they're a pretty safe bet], you'll never get a sealed box from our place...you'll also have fewer problems with the stuff you get from our joint, which is how we can 'double the warrantee without going broke.

    I know who it is, I know!!!!

    No I don't <bg>

    I recently order a PCP Distro box from Mercenary and after receiving it I got a follow up call from Jay making sure everything was okay. You can't buy service like that anymore, oh wait... yes you can!
     

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