Bang Your Head Against The Wall, (or, The State Of Electronic Service In The UK). - diyAudio
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Old 13th July 2004, 04:51 AM   #1
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Talking Bang Your Head Against The Wall, (or, The State Of Electronic Service In The UK).

I received the following interesting Email a few days ago from a cyber-friend. He runs a DJ company in Ireland and is also a rep for Manufacturer A, a producer of pro/DJ equipment. I changed his text slightly only to prevent specific names from appearing. The Japanese manufacturer is of course a rival to the company he works for.

Bear in mind that "distributors" are really private businesses, usually dealers who have taken on the distributorship. They usually are not branches of the manufacturer itself.

I should point out that my Irish friend lived and worked for awhile near London and has a great affection for and interest in England. This is not a case of an Irishman expressing animosity toward Britain.

Finally, although the subject is ostensibly about the UK, any observations about how the electronics business works, (or doesn't work), in any country is welcome as well.

Here is his Email:


It is too depressing lately that almost everything you try to buy you have to order especially. To me, this obviates the whole purpose of retailing and makes me extremely reluctant to pay the shop his/her "cut". If all they are doing is ordering in dribs and drabs off the factory, like I am, what the hell are they there for?

Even though I work for Manufacturer A I recently purchased a Japanese machine. Each company has its own strengths and weak points. Took it out on the road for like 4 weeks. CD mech failed! :-o



Enforcing warranties on CD mechs in Ireland/UK is extremely difficult. There is always a question as to whether it was a manufacturing fault or whether it is transport caused the mech to shake out of line. Indeed, I am not in any way saying that it was a manufacturing fault, knowing Irish roads which by European standards are a complete diasaster (and by the standards of the US east coast also), it may well have been transportation caused the mech to fail.

I didn't even try a warranty call, I contacted the local Japanese manufacturer dealer and said "[yadda yadda]..could be transport damage, let's not go there...can't reset the mech...please gimme a new one the cheapest you can do it for and I won't even try a warranty claim cos we both know its gonna go around in circles...". This I thought was fair 'nuff on my behalf. "Sorry, none in stock". You what? "Can't get any".

This Japanese manufacturer is a big , huge company, much bigger than Manufacturer A as they also do broadcast and domestic products in addition to proDJ equipment. This I found very hard to believe as Manufacturer A have a policy that anywhere in the world you can buy a mech within 48 hours, no matter how crap your dealer is.

I rang the authorised distributor for the Japanese manufacturer in the UK/Ireland. I pulled rank, shouldn't have had to, but I did. "This is [blank] from Manufacturer A International, I need a Japanese manufacturer Mech and I can't source one locally, surely there is some mistake?" "No mate, can't get them". [Red mist comes down over eyes]

"Look you shower of clowns, under EU law you are supposed to have the machines serviceable for 7 years after purchase and you are telling me that you can't even get a mech, not to mind to say install it in "a timely fashion" [also in the law]".

"Can't get them have to bring in them from Japan"

"I don't care where you have to bring them in from, you are supposed to have a stock of them"

"We won't have a delivery for at least two weeks, and there might be limited supply. There is a waiting list, although of course we would look after you....but for normal purposes that's the way it is"

Slammed down the phone...even though they did offer to "look after me" I am still a plain DJ/consumer at heart and just felt outraged at the injustice of it.

Rang Japanese manufacturer’s distributor in Germany.

"Do you have stock of CD mechs?" [not saying that I was "in the trade"]

"Ja ja we have 150 pieces in stock but why not get it from the UK?"

"Because they are a shower of losers? Who don't have stock?"

"Ach, but they must have stock? Surely..."

"No, apparently not..."

"That is outrageous, what they hell are they up to over there?"

Rang back the UK distributor, incensed by this stage, demanding to know why Germany had such a huge stockpile of stock, while the UK, which is more than half the size of Germany, had zero.

"Oh the Germans always carry huge stock" came the reply as if this were a very bad thing.

"Why don't you?"

"Too costly"

I ordered it from the German distributor and told the distributor in the UK that in the future any and all Japanese manufacturer purchases made by me would be made in Germany. The fellow from the UK distributor then rang me and told me that in America, the Japanese manufacturer guarantees to repair a machine in 48 hours "which is far better than Germany"

"And this is supposed to make me feel good? That there is exceptional service in America, very good service in Germany and crap service in the UK?"

"Well no, but it just shows that Germany aren't the best"

"No it doesn't, it just shows that the UK are the worst!!!"

I'm still trying to work out his point....

End of Email.

Comments or similar experiences are welcome.
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Old 13th July 2004, 06:01 AM   #2
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What can I say - the UK distributors sound terribly lame by any conceivable stretch of the imagination. With the huge population of working DJs in the UK, you would think that said Japanese company distributors would be more interested in keeping spares in stock. It's not as if they're going to rot on the shelves....
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Old 13th July 2004, 07:59 AM   #3
Nisbeth is offline Nisbeth  Denmark
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Funny and depressing at the same time And you'd think that if the UK distrubutor continues this policy they will, at some point, start to argue that the online trade is ruining them, that the Germans are selling the equipment below list price, that (insert 17 other excuses here), and then offer even lousier service "because we have to cut costs to compete on price"


/U.
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Old 13th July 2004, 09:56 AM   #4
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Default Re: Bang Your Head Against The Wall, (or, The State Of Electronic Service In The UK).

Konnichiwa,

Quote:
Originally posted by kelticwizard
It is too depressing lately that almost everything you try to buy you have to order especially. To me, this obviates the whole purpose of retailing and makes me extremely reluctant to pay the shop his/her "cut". If all they are doing is ordering in dribs and drabs off the factory, like I am, what the hell are they there for?
Quote:
Originally posted by kelticwizard
I ordered it from the German distributor and told the distributor in the UK that in the future any and all Japanese manufacturer purchases made by me would be made in Germany. The fellow from the UK distributor then rang me and told me that in America, the Japanese manufacturer guarantees to repair a machine in 48 hours "which is far better than Germany"
Well, it seems to prevade the UK Industry at large. Recently I had to buy quite large quanteties of various things, like audio grade Elna Capacitors, Wima Film Cap's, AD Op-Amp's, Burr Brown IC's, Diodes and so on.

I ended up having to order from a wide range of Distributors/Dealers and most of them outside the UK. The UK companies still have items outstanding, everything ordered from the US and Germany is here. Praise jah for Newark's takeover of Farnell. I think I'll be using them in future a lot more. I needed some switches.

After endless aggrevation with Elma UK they told us it would be 2 Weeks delivery time. Newark had equivalent Grayhill switches for halve the money, ready to ship for delivery within 3 Working Days. I told Elma UK where they can deposit their switches, as you can imagine.

I really get the Idea companies, be they large or small in the UK just don't want to get any business. Even the French are better, by miles, when it comes to customer service!

I'll be dealing with Germany and the US almost exclusively from now on. I had enough of these clowns.

Sayonara
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Old 13th July 2004, 10:03 AM   #5
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I believe (from the press releases at the time) that it was Farnell who took over Newark.

They all seem to trade as 'In-One' now.
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Old 13th July 2004, 10:17 AM   #6
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"I believe (from the press releases at the time) that it was Farnell who took over Newark"

Newark is now owned by Inone. Inone also owns MCM.
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Old 14th July 2004, 03:37 AM   #7
Magura is offline Magura  Denmark
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Default Re: Bang Your Head Against The Wall, (or, The State Of Electronic Service In The UK).

Quote:
Originally posted by kelticwizard

Comments or similar experiences are welcome.

That story could easily have been from Denmark, with one exception....you probably wouldnt have been able to find the cd player here in the first place.

I never buy anything in Denmark if I have a choice, neither in england for that kind of matter. A similar example from england is the AX trafo group buy from Airlink in england, thay delivered a trafo not up to specs to everybody, besides that the ones shipped to Denmark were not packed proper, so they arrived pretty battered. Ive had to waste countless emails and phonecalls on them to make them give me what I paid for, and as far as Im concerned only the 4 trafos ordered for the Danish klan were replaced with trafos up to specs, the rest of the people involved in the groupbuy just accepted the crap they got...

Magura:
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Old 14th July 2004, 06:03 AM   #8
Variac is offline Variac  United States
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Dear K-wiz,

I had a very tiring and difficult day before I read about your Irish friends adventure.

When I read about the German's incredulity, and the original English persons response, then his follow up about the US, I just started laughing out loud. Wow -what logic....

So, at least you brightened up my day....
I'm a bit of an Anglophile, but after dealing with British Rail trying to get across the channel once before the chunnel was finished I have seen the attittude..... My English friends say BR was famous for their attitude and is now rotting in hell....

MArk
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Old 14th July 2004, 01:19 PM   #9
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