Thinking about an Anthem?

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by Frank Zimkas, Jan 7, 2004.

  1. Frank Zimkas

    Frank Zimkas Supporting Actor

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    The great thing about these forums is that you can learn alot about equipment before you buy. I read alot the Anthem AVM-20 and auditioned it and many others before I finally saved up enough to buy one.

    I know that there are alot of Anthem fans here and else where that have had excellaent luck with their preamp, and with Anthem in general. My experience was anything but!! The AVM-20 was purchased from an authorized dealer in Colorado Springs, they won't be getting anymore business from me.

    Here's a link for a thread I started at Club Polk describing the experience.

    http://clubpolk.polkaudio.com/forum/...threadid=15101
     
  2. ChadLB

    ChadLB Screenwriter

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    I agree with what other mentioned.....if they(Anthem) where a great CS company they would have sent you a new one. I know it that was OUTLAW you would have had one shipped same day ...latest next day. Why can't more companies be like them.....
     
  3. JimmyK

    JimmyK Second Unit

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    Wow! That is certainly not the kind of experience I would have expected from Anthem.

    At this point the only reasonable solution is a new unit or a full refund, IMO. If possible, you should contact the higher-ups at Anthem and let them know what happened and how you expect it to be resolved. Be polite, firm, and persistant.

    The shop you are dealing with certainly dropped the ball. They could have easily just given you a new unit and then dealt with Anthem on the defective unit. It doesn't sound like they care much about repeat business. Unfortunately, this seems to be the rule nowdays, not the exception.

    As frustrating as it is, don't give up. You deserve to get what you paid for.

    Keep us posted and feel free to vent as needed!

    JimmyK
     
  4. JimmyK

    JimmyK Second Unit

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    There are, they're called SVS! (Sorry, I couldn't resist[​IMG] )

    Speaking of service, I found the quality of service you get from a manufacturer often depends greatly on the retailer's willingness to go to bat for you.

    For example, I purchased a Pioneer DVD player back in 1997. The power supply failed a couple of times. The dealer said they would contact Pioneer about getting me a new unit instead. Well, after it became apparent the it would take awhile to get a response from Pioneer, the dealer said he would just replace my DVD player with the latest model and deal with Pioneer himself so I wouldn't have to wait any longer.

    Well, in the end, I got a new player in a resonable amount of time, and the dealer eventually got satisfaction from Pioneer.

    Hang in there, Frank! Keep us posted.

    JimmyK
     
  5. ChadLB

    ChadLB Screenwriter

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    Yes,
    Jimmy SVS is great as I had a problem with my PCi that I had and they were willing to do anything to get it back up and running well I took it apart and fixed it myself with there help.....now that is great CS...
     
  6. Frank Zimkas

    Frank Zimkas Supporting Actor

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    Thanks to ALL of the members that have taken the time to read all or part of the post at Club Polk and especaily those that took the time to post a comment or two, Pro or Con!! I'm not offended by anyones comments and am very happy for those of you that have purchased any Anthem product and have had good luck with it. My intent is to offer a different perspective on a high end purchase. The decision to buy or not to buy is ultimately up to each individual, the important thing is to weight all of the available information.

    Was I pissed off when I started the original thread, a little....really just a little! But as more time went by, my frustration mounted.

    Still not sure what I'm going to do with the Anthem, I doubt that I'll ever be able to sell it now.
     
  7. Tom Camlioglu

    Tom Camlioglu Stunt Coordinator

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    Frank,

    I find your intention of this thread -faulty to say the least.

    While it is certainly unfortunate that your Anthem kicked the bucket on you, you have moved on from chastising your dealer to completely trying to burn Anthem over this.

    Why do I say this? Well ... I followed the link to your HT site and see a "ban" over the Anthem. Second of all, in another forum you have this exact same post and that thread has taken more to a product/company bashing than focussing on what (I would think)was more important (like getting back a fully functioning piece of equipment!).

    It is clear from the other forum and your web-site that there is an intent to dissuade people off of Anthem - which IMO is just wrong ... I can't understand how you lump Anthem in with the poor service you received from your dealer. You never mentioned if "you" had even contacted Anthem yourself, which probably would have been a good idea from the start!
     
  8. Frank Zimkas

    Frank Zimkas Supporting Actor

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    Tom,
    Thanks for commenting, pro or con, all comments are appreciated.

    Anthem and the Dealer are both the subject of my threads. Iknow that the original thread is long but I do state that I did contact Anthem. I folowed the directions in the Warranty Section of the Anthem AVM-20 Owners Manual, it clearly stated that any product that fails should be returnrdto the dealer that it was purchased from. I did contact Anthem after the dealer kept giving me the old song and dance when the preamp failed to arrive on the scheduled delivery date. I gave the dealer the oppurtunity to do their job and get the preamp there quickly, whic I later found out wasn't done. I Called and asked Anthem about my preamp and wasn't given a decent answer, only that it was being looked at, nothing more than that.

    Am I upset with Anthem? Yes. The dealer? Yes. Was the unit repaired? apparently not, the invoice recieved said that there was no problem with the unit, which is most definetly not the case!! I clearly stated that the failure was duplicated the day after it originally occured, in the dealers showroom with other known good equipment connected to it.

    The "Anti-Anthem" banner on my HT site used to be a link to the Anthem Website. If the dealer had a wedsite I would most certainly added it to my site as an "Anti-Dealer" link as well.

    Tom, alot of this is covered in the original thread that I linked to earlier. I know it's long and some of the responses may not be what YOU would have said, but the people that posted them read my comments and formed an opinion. Much the same as you have done. The fact that your opinion may differ from theirs or mine is okay with me. I still welcome your input and respect your opinion on the matter.
     
  9. Charles Gurganus

    Charles Gurganus Supporting Actor

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    All this points to the fact that not all dealers are worth the premium price you pay for A/V equipment.

    For me, the real kicker is how long the unit apparantly just sat at the dealer while you thought it had been shipped for repair. That is just plain neglagence. I feel you still don't know the REAL story about this.
     
  10. Chas_T

    Chas_T Supporting Actor

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    Frank,

    I am sorry about your situation with the Anthem AVM-20. I understand your frustration with this as I've dealt with similar situations in my life, but not with Anthem or an irresponsible dealer where you purchased the unit.

    I also find it bizarre that the unit was bench tested by Anthem and not found defective. As Charles G. writes, there may be more behind this nightmare then you are aware.

    However as much as that may be the case, you paid a substantial amount of money for the product and your bottom line is that you want the unit to function properly. Without being involved in your situation and following the case history, IF the unit CANNOT be repaired, Anthem should send you a new unit without any question once this is resolved. NDA for repair to Anthem and then NDA on the return shipment once it clears customs.

    Perhaps I've been fortunate that the unit I purchased has been stellar across the board. My problems have always been addressed with prompt e-mails and telephone calls. However, I have not had to send the unit out for repair, which is a totally different scenario. I know a few of the AMV-20 users have sent their units back to the factory for service and had zero or minimal problems. Waiting for the unit to be returned is the hardest part of course

    I hope this works out for you. Good luck!!

    Charles
     
  11. DanielG

    DanielG Agent

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    Frank,

    I certainly understand your frustration - anyone would be frustrated at the situation. As someone who has an Anthem AVM20 on order, I was disappointed to read your concerns about their customer service (though I have to say that they answered my e-mails extremely promptly and completely regarding questions I had). Though I read the other thread very quickly, I did want to clarify a few things.

    --The unit arrived at Anthem on Dec. 11 and left Anthem on Dec. 30.

    Is 19 days of which 8 were weekends/holidays (so 11 business days) an overly long period of time for audio equipment to be inspected, analyzed and fixed? Also, it seems that they couldn't duplicate the problem you had. I would think that it would always take longer to try to go over the entire piece of equipment because they couldn't identify the problem that you had than to fix a clear problem. Why wouldn't a reasonable assumption be that they even spent more time with it than usual because they wanted to be as sure as possible that they didn't send a broken unit back to you.

    I have no idea how long is a reasonable repair period since I haven't had to get anything repaired recently. Though 4 years or so ago I had a problem with a Harmon Karden a/v receiver and the dealer service center tried to fix it, they thought they had and got it back to me 3 weeks later, but it didn't work, then I was told to send it elsewhere where a different place tried again and after a few more weeks told me they couldn't and that they had to send it to H-K and it wasn't until maybe 3 months had past after bringing it in for repair that I was told by H-K they couldn't fix it and received a replacement receiver (in fact the whole time I didn't even have a loaner). I was extremely frustrated and this was even a case where at all steps everyone knew it didn't work and did I think it should take less time - absolutely!! I wouldn't have ever thought to indict the whole brand and get rid of the piece of equipment because of it.

    --The unit that came back to you worked when you tested it in the store (though it seems that you may not have tested it again at home) and as far as you know now, it works fine.

    Apart from what I'll address below, not a bad result - have a problem with a piece of equipment, send it back to the manufacturer and get back something that works.

    I think the real problem and what really led to your frustration was the dealer delay. I also think that you should have gotten much better answers, or at least more clear answers, from the person you talked to at Anthem - that is really where I see any fault on Anthem's part. If they couldn't find the problem and the unit currently works, I can't fault them to much for not replacing the unit....YET. For instance there could have been a software glitch and when they reinstalled they unknowing corrected the problem...who knows. If the problem happened again, that would be another story. If they found a problem and someone screwed up in documenting the fix so a customer service rep could go over it with you, that is disappointing but is it really a fatal error. Bottom line is that if they found the problem it was fixed. If they didn't find the problem and the unit worked in their tests, you can't blame them for taking some extra time to do testing and you can't blame them for sending back to you what they believe is a working unit (and at this point as far as you know to date, a working unit).

    I think you are justified to be frustrated and I admit I'm not in your shoes, but would think I'd be frustrated as well - I hate getting the runaround and misinformation. But, to slam a brand based on these facts (unless I misunderstood something) that you carefully researched and give up on a product that you clearly had decided was the best way to spend your money is a bit surprising to me.

    --Dan
     
  12. Jay Sylvester

    Jay Sylvester Supporting Actor

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    It seems to me that your anger should be directed toward your dealer and not toward Anthem. The three weeks during which Anthem had your AVM 20 isn't all that unreasonable, especially considering it was over the holiday. Most of the delay was caused by your crooked dealer sitting on the shipment for several weeks. As for the difficulties getting reliable info from the various Anthem CSRs with whom you spoke, it shouldn't be surprising that low-level phone reps are screwing up basic info.

    You also note that you had downgraded from the latest firmware to the 2.10 firmware the night you experienced the sub output loss. Perhaps this was the source of the problem. What was wrong with the new firmware? Did you try installing the 2.10 firmware again after discovering the sub issue just to make sure that the installation went as it was supposed to?

    I'd guess that one of the first things Anthem does when they receive a "problematic" unit is upgrade the firmware. It's entirely likely that they installed the firmware, found that the problem went away, but then decided to carefully and methodically examine your AVM 20 in order to make sure that there wasn't any type of hardware problem. That sounds more like the Anthem I've read about.

    I'm not surprised by your dealer story at all though. It's a shame that class acts like Anthem can't find enough dealers with the same standards. Of course, if they only stuck to trustworthy dealers, most of us wouldn't have an Anthem dealer within 500 miles of our homes.

    Frank, I suggest you take the AVM 20 out of the box and enjoy it. Test all the features you can and remind yourself why you chose it in the first place. Remember that the latest batch of preamps are becoming computer-like in their complexity and performance, and as we all know, complex electronics driven by complex software are prone to glitches. It's very likely that you experienced a software issue only and that it will now work reliably for many years. You have a 5 year warranty, so what's the worry? If it craps out again, you're entirely within your rights to request a replacement, and I'd bet Anthem would step up if you did.

    Your dealer, on the other hand, sounds like an unprofessional jackass, and you'd be smart to avoid him in the future.
     
  13. wayne p

    wayne p Stunt Coordinator

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    Frank, from reading your posts it seems your AVM 20 now sits in the box unused. Why not hook it up and determine if it is functioning properly or not? Even if you intend on selling it you should be able to advise a potential buyer if the unit operates as intended.

    It is my impression your beef is with the dealer who delayed in shipping it out. The turn around time at Anthem does not seem unreasonable. If the unit is fixed why not just take a deep breath and enjoy. If it is not working properly I would call Anthem and explain you have no confidence in your dealer and arrange to send it to them directly along with a written explanation of the problems you are experiencing.

    Although I have never had a problem with my unit (beyond the 5.1 pop now corrected with the firmware upgrade) I have contacted Anthem on various occasions and even traveled to the factory for the DSP board upgrade. In all cases I have been very satisfied and even impressed with the service. In my opinion they appear to be truly interested in customer service.
     
  14. Frank Zimkas

    Frank Zimkas Supporting Actor

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    Once again I must commend everyone for the time and effort you have put into reading this thread and the original thread at Club Polk! Everyone has brought something to the table and all comments are appreciated!!

    FYI, one of the members at AVS sent an email to Anthem regarding this subject. He received a point by point response of my original thread at Club Polk. Just wantd to clarify the reference to Dave's email in the following paragraph.

    While we're on the subject of emails, I would like to report that I too received an email from Anthem. From Dave's description it sounds like the same one that I received. Nick from Anthem Tech. Support obviously put a lot of time into the response and raised some very valid points and unfortunately the email contained a Copyright Statement that strictly prohibits reprinting or re transmittal. I have addressed each of his comments and clarified a number of issues that we have been talking about here and on other sites as well. I think that Nick has a better understanding of my point of view and I can appreciate his views on this mess as well. Let's face facts, if I were in his shoes and read these threads I would most certainly respond with a strongly worded rebuttal.

    I received a response to my reply email with a request for some specific information regarding the nature of the failure and will continue to address the equipment problems with Nick directly. The dealer has become a non-issue for me at this point, as I will no longer be dealing with them to resolve the current situation or any future problems. They have made it very clear to me that they are not reliable, that service after the sale is a foreign concept, and that any further discussion would fall on deaf ears.

    I know that some of you will wonder why I didn't just contact Anthem directly when the preamp failed initially. A valid question, but as I have stated previously the Warranty section of the owners manual clearly states that the equipment must be returned to the dealer in order to obtain warranty service. I tried to follow the proper steps/protocol to get the equipment repaired properly and in a timely manner and not take any chances and void the warranty. When all else fails follow the instructions!! I had no idea that going through the dealer would have generated this mess! I've been asked to communicate directly with Anthem from now on and not go through the dealer.

    I will be reconnecting the AVM-20 and going through all of the set-up options to get as close as possible to the same configuration as I initially had.

    I apologize for taking so long to post my comments, but in my defense....I've been working my A$$ off lately.......but that's a good thing!
     

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