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Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Tan_U, Oct 2, 2001.
anybody had experience with them, I'm planning to buy a speaker package from them.
i've browsed a few times but strayed elsewhere b/c i dont think they're an authorized dealer for most of their products. what are you looking to buy exactly? i would rather buy from an authorized dealer in case something happened.
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I'm thinking of buying the Energy Take5.2 five peice speaker package for $379, It's a really good deal compared to good guys which is selling them for $600. I found them from pricescan.com, those seem to be the only two stores that sell energy.
I bought from a reciever from wholesaleconnection a couple of years ago and overall I'd say it was a good experience.
The receiver I got would up dying on me after about 2 and a half months, but I don't think they were the problem. From what I could tell, the product I got was brand new A stock. I just got a dud.
I went through a 5 month tango with Kenwood trying to get that receiver fixed. When I took it to the authorized repair joint, they looked at the receipt and didn't say a word about where I bought it. They took it (and kept if for friggin ever) and actually wound up having to send it back to Kenwood when they couldn't figure out the problem.
While talking to Kenwood several months later and trying to get a replacement for a still fouled up receiver, they of course asked me where I bought it from. I told them and they said that wholesaleconnection.com wasn't authorized, but apparently they have a parent company that has B&M stores and they are authorized (by Kenwood anyhow).
Long to short, they wound up replacing the unit after a good bit of talk. I wouldn't want to go through it again, but things worked out fine.
With something like speakers though.....I'd go for it. How often do you really have problems with speakers? Damage during shipping would be the biggest problem I could see, but it's going UPS and getting money out of them is elementary. I'd think you're safe order simple product like speakers from them....authorized or not.
And you can't beat their prices. The money you'll save would pay for repairs you probably won't have to make down the road.
I also prefer to deal with authorized dealers to be safe. The only time I will buy from an unauthorized dealer is if the item is unavailable elsewhere and I really have to have it. Case in point, in July of 2000, I wanted a brand new laserdisc player for little money. The only option was the then-recently discontinued Pioneer CLD-D406 LD/CD player. No authorized dealers such as Crutchfield or J&R Music World still had it, but I found it at www.1cache.com by searching for "CLD-D406" on Yahoo!. I had never heard of 1cache before that, and they are not an authorized Pioneer dealer, but I got a brand new 'D406 in a sealed box from them and have had no problems with it. Shipping was prompt, and the unit was well packed. Likewise, I bought a Sony MDS-JA555ES minidisc player in June from Sound Pros (www.soundpros.com), which is not an authorized Sony ES web dealer, since no one else had it (another discontinued item). The experience with Sound Pros also was positive. So, I wouldn't rule out unauthorized dealers outright, but if you can find the item from an authorized dealer, you ought to consider that route. I consider dealing with unauthorized dealers to be a bit risky in general.
In looking at Wholesale Connection's web site, they have excellent prices. For example, they have the Sony SCD-CE775 multi-channel SACD changer for $279. Brick and mortar stores sell it for $349, and the best price I had seen for it was $305 from Oade Bros. Oade Bros. is an authorized Sony dealer, however. I guess if money is tight, I would give Wholesale Connection a shot. Call them first and discuss their return policy and make sure you are getting brand new merchandise in a sealed box before ordering anything.
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This may be a tad off-topic, but my thoughts always starts churning whenever I hear the "unauthorized dealer" issue raised. The first thing that occurs to me is the less-than-adequate efforts made by most manufacturers to communicate to potential and actual buyers these policies, let alone who is (or is not) an "authorized dealer." I'll admit that certain manufacturers do a better job than others, but on the whole the conveying of this idea is pretty weak. I am not convinced that a consumer would not-- in the end-- prevail against most manufacturers on this warranty issue. Further on the weakness of the notice provided by manufacturers, I have even seen this policy stated on web-sites, but omitted from the actual warranty language.
A bit more academic in my own mind is the idea that manufacturers can state (when they do) these policies but yet permit the sales and distribution channels to exist that allow-- if not outright promote-- so-called unauthorized sales. There is anecdotal evidence to suggest that if a manufacturer really does not want its goods to be sold by unauthorized vendors, such sales can be prevented. Take, for example, Paradigm speakers. Paradigm has a strict no mail order policy, and I would challenge people to find these items available new on-line. On the other hand, other elite speaker manufacturers, such as B&W and M&K (to name but a few) who claim similar policies, can be found on-line albeit from "unauthorized" resellers.
Perhaps there are some people out there who "roll over" too easily when denial is the first response from the manufacturer. I would be curious to hear actual stories from members on whether they fought this issue and lost/won. That a manufacturer would refuse to honor the warranty on a product that is purchased new and otherwise undamaged and which was obtained legally through the distribution chain smacks of bad PR at best and illegality at worst. Ultimately, I think the manufacturer is in the best position to police the sale and distribution of its product, and should not/cannot shift this to the consumer.
That was my story with the Kenwood receiver from wholesaleconnection.
I bought it without a care of whether they were "authorized" or not. I had never had a warranty issue with another piece of electronic gear (seems they can build this stuff to crap out on the day after the warranty expires!), so it didn't matter to me.
Between the time I bought the receiver and when it started to break down (about 3 months) I had read that Kenwood (along with alot of other manufacturers) had a very slim "A" list of online dealers. And any product bought from other sites had voided warranties.
I thought this was interesting since nowhere in the Kenwood warranty card does it say anything about where you can and cannot buy from.
Granted, it's listed on their website, but I think that legally they'd have to put a copy of that into every customers hand to make it binding.
When I had trouble with my receiver, I took it to the only authorized service center in Atlanta and turned it in. Of course, they had to have a copy of the reciept, so I gave them the webstore invoice. They took it and read over it, copied it and took my unit with no questions asked.
It wound up taking them several months (we can't duplicate the problem!) of trial and error (mostly error) before they finally sent it back to Kenwood's factory to have it checked.
By this time, I was fairly ticked, since I was told it would be 3 or so weeks max when I dropped it off.
When they finally told me it was finished, I picked it up and hooked it up (had finished my new HT during the down time) and it was still fouled up.
I was on the phone with the repair place immediately. They said that there really wasn't anything else they could do but look at it again and give it another shot, so I got phone numbers for Kenwood and called them with the express intent of getting a new unit.
The deal here is to not talk to the first people you deal with. They don't have the authority to do anything about anything.
I immediately asked for a customer service manage and finally got through to somebody who it seemed could handle the problem.
In the course of my conversation with this person, the question was asked "Where was the receiver purchased from?". I told her and she put me on hold. When she came back she started into the "unauthorized dealer" nonsense with me.
I cut her off and explained that I had been without my reciever for 5 months. In that time, Kenwood themselves had authorized repairs on the unit, then when the service center couldn't fix it, Kenwood authorized it to be sent to them to be worked on. So she could stow the authorized dealer talk.
Granted, the circumstances were a little different in my case than most who have this type of problem. Kenwood seems to have made a mistake in even working on my unit in the first place, but their mistake was my gain.
I think the final word in this came when I sent them about a 15 page fax showing all my reciepts, the printout the repair place gave me of everything they tried to do to fix it, including sending it to Kenwood. I also sent a very sternly worded letter stating in no uncertain terms that anything less than a new model year receiver of equal or greater price would be unacceptable.
I recieved a phone call the next day giving me instruction on where to send the broken unit back to. I wound up with a new, upgraded year unit for just the price of shipping the old one back.
So I'd say even in other circumstances that if you push them hard enough and talk to the right people and let it be known that you won't take any crap off of them, they'll give you just about anything you ask for.
[Edited last by Mike LS on October 03, 2001 at 09:09 AM]