I have a Talon Roc I purchased from a fellow Audiogon member. It developed a buzz after two months of use. I called talon, now owned by Rives and told them the problem. I got a call from Katie saying they no longer dealt with the amp manufacturer but she would call me back. She didn't so I called a week later. Basically they weren't interested in my plight, even if if I paid for out of warrenty service. They did say I could replace the amp for $1600!!!!! That is a "we don't don't care, but if you pay this-we will-price"!!!! A call to Richard got me, "go buy a Crown amp for a $1000 and make a wood panel for the back" BEWARE---it appears Rives do not want to support Talons existing products!!!
Hmm, interesting.. I would assume it is working and needs a little TLC but not a new amp.. I am not writing this defending the support issue as I have no comment on that directly to rives but some opinions on how a warranty works, Just as a suggestion a subwoofer is a rather simple device and to pull that amp out should be fairly easy..
Maybe get in there and look around, see if something is loose.. use some like dynamat deadening material and adhear it to some stuff, and tighten up some bolts and screws.. I mean second owner support is not guaranteed from most companies as I understand, not to mention the warranty is probably gone from the original owner on top of it. It would cost you more to ship that thing anyway, find out what the amp is if it actually the problem, I mean it would be odd that it is a blown amp and buzzing thru the driver, maybe the driver is the buzzing.. So its a tuff call..
Start cheap, do some work on it, deaden and put it back with more secure actions than it is built in the first place, I mean this is the issue we all face in the hiend or Cheap Sonys we buy on ebay, A lot of DIY or spend A lot to get it done by somebody else. And unfortunatley if the company that builds the amp or driver in there charges 1600, well then they charge 1600..
I am not so sure even if most companies especially on subs would support the Amp after 1 to 3 years anyway without charging full price for it, I mean the biggest amp manufactures in the world like Mcintosh for example will not Flip the cost for anything after the 3 year period, if its a 1200 dollar transformer blown, than it is a 1200 dollar transformer blown, and they will charge for that and the shipping, and the Labor unless otherwise specified. So I understand your frustration on this, and you feel a little extra cold shoulder due to the circumstances, and the excuse of a new owner not caring, but this seems its not really the case if you step back and take a look at it, basically stating here are your options, this would be the same handed to you buy any company if they don't give Bumper to Bumper Lifetime warantys it would seem. Good Luck
Rives offered to fix your speaker, but you've obviously declined and now prefer to smear their name in a public forum. You purchased a used product made by a company that was no longer in business and when you did that you assumed a certain amount of risk. It's unfortunate, but in hindsight you made the poor decision.
I don't agree with the comment that 'you made a poor decision' purchasing a speaker from a company out of business. With that thought, i'd venture to say that would mean a good 30%, of the sales here are 'poor decisions'
I would be pretty discouraged if I got a quote like that for a product which I don't believe even cost that amount used in the first place.
I say look for a good tech in your local area. Most amps are can be repaired and parts are almost always off the shelf stuff, not custom made.
Most active subwoofer amps don't last long...that why the warranty is usually very short. I agree with Undertow, subs are very simple to work on...IMO, get another amp from parts express if that one can't be fixed...$300-$400.
Justlisten, I would say buying gear from a comapny that is out of business is a bad decision if you expect someone to work on your gear, if not, cest la vie!
It seems like Richard tried to offer a cheaper suggestion for Robyatt to fix a speaker he did not build, sell, or for which he bore NO responsibility. What implied warranty did the seller of the sub woofer pass on to you?
I'm at a loss to understand why Rives has any more responsibility to fix your sub than you have...
To say that Robyatt made a poor choice buying equipment from a company out of business seems a bit snobish, how many companies in the high end are very small and come and go every year? With that thinking the percentage of potentially "poor decision's" and "Assumed risk" would be another nail in the high end coffin. In close this attitude it is not exclusive to the company in original post. I had the same basic problem with an Electrostatic speaker maker, my "Inner" dealings with them left me with a bad taste in my mouth...but I wont name the company.
Rives has been a LONG time member and contributor to this board, and has many times gone WAY out of his way to help others. To many here, his reputation is WELL known and appreciated.
There ARE some risks in buying in the used market. Being one who has purchased used gear who's manufacturer was no longer in business, and used gear which the manufacturer refused to repair or correspond regarding, I feel REALLY WELL qualified to have a sense of how the used market IS.
Those who do not wish to be aware of those risks should seriously consider purchasing elsewhere.
As Nrchy stated (quite correctly), "I'm at a loss to understand why Rives has any more responsibility to fix your sub than you have..."
"I'm at a loss to understand why Rives has any more responsibility to fix your sub than you have..."
That's fine. But you hear plenty of stories on these forums about manufacturers going above and beyond for folks that bought equipment used and/or out of warranty. A little good publicity goes a long way.....
Just my .02 cents here. If you're going to buy used, then you got to expect if things don't work our right, then it's your "tough luck". Most manufacters aren't going to take care of "second owners" and there ain't going to be any warrenties. Every now and then a manufactuer will go the "extra mile" for a second owner, but truth is, they really don't have to, and to expect otherwise is unrealistic. If you can't deal with that reality then perhaps you should buy new.
I have to disagree with the notion that manufacturers have no obligation to fix gear for a second owner. What if Toyota or GM had this policy? The idea that after the original owner is through with something, it becomes a throw-away is morally outrageous, and any high-end company that believes this should be exposed and publicly shamed.
On the other hand, companies should not be expected to do repair work for free. If they invest in spare parts inventories, they should be able to make some money on those parts. If labopr must be spent on repairs, they should get paid just like any appliance/automotive erpair situation.
I also don't agree that Rives Audio bears "no responsibility" for the speakler. He bought the whole company. He did not (as I understand) buy its liquidated assets after some kind of bankruptcy, so I don't see why any obligations would be cancelled.
These are kind of academic to Robyatt's immediate problem, though. There was probably no legal obligation from Talon to Robyatt (presumably, the warranty had expired, or was not transferrable).
It does seem like Rives tried to help him out, to some degree. Rives / Talon did not make the amplifier, so they can not do internal repairs to it, although it seems reasonable for them to sell a new one (which they have offered ot do). If they couldn't fix the amp, they should have told you where they got it, or who could fix it, or if the amp manufacturer was out of business or charged outrageous prices to repair, why it would be better to just buy a Crown amp.
I would try to figure out who made the amp originally (look for a label, a marking on a circuit board, or just ask Talon / Rives), and contact them directly to ask if they can repair it. $1600 seems high. Subwoofer plate amps are available from Madisound and Parts Express for under $500, but I don't know what you have. It amy turn out that the reall problem is the amp manufacturer.
If the buzz is coming from the amplifier itself (not through the subwoofer speaker), it is almost certainly the transformer. This should not cost more than a couple hundred dollars to replace, and should really be undr $100. I would look inside the amp. Many transformers are made up of thin plates screwed together to form the core. There usually are 4 screws and nuts, one in each corner. Try tightening these up, see fi this solves your problem. If you can find a part number on the transformer, you may be able to buy a new one cheaply and replace it yourself.
Regarding Rives / Talon, it is hard to say much without knowing how much the amplifier cost originally. It sounds like they tried to help, but are not deserving any above and beyond awards. I would like very much to hear Mr. Rives' side of the story, though.
Disclaimer: I own a pair of Talon Audio Hawk loudspeakers.
"I have to disagree with the notion that manufacturers have no obligation to fix gear for a second owner. What if Toyota or GM had this policy?"
I think that's a bad analogy because most auto warranties are somewhat transferable and dealers honor them. Beyond that, then if you're getting work done you're going to pay the going Labor/Parts rate.
One of the bad things in the audio industry, is that when a company goes "out of business" or another company take them over, that quite often many of their products become "orphans". Going back and reading the orginal post it's apparent that Rives who now owns Talon, doesn't have a relationship with the amp manufacturer. An apparently the Talon Roc has become an "orphan" product. What is Rives suppose to do, other than what they did, which is to offer to replace the amp for $1600. Once again, buyers needs to do their homework when buying used (i.e. what happens if something goes wrong, who's going to take care of what, are parts still available, ect?) and don't ASSUME that any warranties are going to be in place, especially when buying from private "second parties", who are not authorized dealers.
Robbyat thank you for your post and letting others know of your unfortunate experience with Rives Audio. While it is certainly true that Rives is entitled to charge whatever they wish to repair out of warranty Talon product, their willingness to do so, how they treat customers, and what they charge for their service reflects their business and ethics, even if it is a product no longer in current production. What I find disturbing about your experience, if it is in fact as you describe, is Rives failure to call you back when they said they would and their somewhat disappointing effort to help solve your problem. Repairing an amplifier should be a simple task for any manufacturer of audio components. At the very least they should have put you in touch with the manufacturer of the amplifier so that you could arrange for service. To suggest replacing an amplifier for $1600 because of a buzz that probably requires nothing more than a couple hours service and an off the shelf part or two, this to me shows a severe lack of principle and business ethics on the part of Rives. I don't think Richard Bird's suggestion of buying a Crown amp and leaving the customer to figure out a way to make it fit is the best solution.
Rives Audio announced their purchase of Talon in the beginning of August so I do not understand why Onhwy61 is making the assumption that you made a poor decision for purchasing a product from a company that was out of business, much less saying you prefer to smear their name in a public forum when the exposure of such experiences are clearly one of valid purposes of such forums (once again, assuming you have accurately described it). If youve only had the Roc for two months, clearly Talon has been a viable company during that period, albeit under new ownership. In fact, to the best of my knowledge Talon never actually went out of business (although there were concerns for a few months); in the end it simply changed hands.
Nrchy, Jeffcott, and Cleaneduphippy: Im sorry, but I disagree with your comments and find they reflect the kind of attitude that has become all too indicative of the kind of companies whose focus is on how much money they can make in the short term rather than in customer service and support. Unfortunately high-end audio has its fair share of this type of business ethic. Fortunately there are still a large number of dedicated audio companies who share not only a passion for music and the technology that goes into its reproduction, but also appreciate and take care of their customers regardless of how they ended up owning one or more of their products. The reason that companies like Audio Research, Classe, Bryston, Aerial, Pass Labs, Thiel, Ayre, Vandersteen, Conrad Johnson, Jeff Rowland, and VPI, just to name a very few, have been successful and stayed in business for many years is they stand behind their products, even the ones that have been out of production for many years. All too often I think many audiophiles (and audio companies) forget how important the used market is. Audio companies need those with lesser means who take advantage of depreciation cycles to buy up the equipment from those who can afford and want to get their latest product. Just because they are not buying new does not mean that they are not supporting the company whose product theyve chosen to purchase. When it comes to loudspeakers there are more choices than any other audio component and a great deal of competition. A strong used market for any product, as well as a strong new market, is good for both the manufacturer and the consumer.
Here are two examples of good customer service from my own experience, one directly related to Talon:
I own a Pass Labs Aleph P preamplifier. Technically Im the 3rd owner although I dont think the 2nd owner held on to it long enough to really listen to it. Upon its arrival it had a loud hum. The fellow I purchased it from gave me his FedEx account for shipping both ways to and from Pass Labs and offered to pay for any repairs (he also gave me $200 off my purchase price for the inconvenience very nice seller). I contacted Pass Labs and even though it was out of warranty and I told them I was not the original owner I could not have asked to have been treated better. They repaired the unit at no charge, but did bill the sellers FedEx account for return shipping. Upon arrival I found it was still a bit noisy so I contacted Pass again who were very apologetic and asked me to return it again. They pretty much rebuilt the power supply and once again at no charge to me even though it was out of warranty and I was not the original owner. This time they even paid for return shipping to me. They also put anything they repair in a new box. I have read other similar comments here about Pass Labs exemplary customer service.
Two years ago I bought a pair of Talon Khorus loudspeakers from the original owner, mostly because it was a local sale (and Id read all the rave reviews). One of the grill covers was damaged by the first owner and he had let me know that he would purchase a replacement set for me from Talon. On the day that I took delivery of the speakers I was quite surprised to receive a phone call from Talon asking me where I would like the new grills sent, and if they could be of any assistance in my set up of the speakers. I spent the better part of an hour talking with Mike Farnsworth about set up and crossovers. He offered to sell me the latest version of the X crossover for $750 (at the time Talons advertised price for a new crossover was $1500, $2000 installed plus shipping both ways). Im pretty handy technically so he also offered to walk me through the install over the phone so it would not be necessary to spend several hundred extra in shipping expense. It is unfortunate that events in Mikes personal life resulted in his not having the necessary time or energy to put into running Talon because he certainly was good with his customers.
Rives has been a LONG time member and contributor to this board, and has many times gone WAY out of his way to help others. To many here, his reputation is WELL known and appreciated.
Jeffcott, the old saying action speaks louder than words applies here. You are right that Rives is pretty outspoken on this forum, but then they are not the first manufacturer to use such forums its a good form of marketing afterall. So far we only have one side of this story and a lot of opinions on how it should be interpreted. Perhaps Rives will join in and offer his side of the story, but until that time well just have to go with the experience Robbyat has described. I do find it interesting that a few here are so willing to come to Rives defense when someone has a complaint about the service they received.
Most active subwoofer amps don't last long...that why the warranty is usually very short. I agree with Undertow, subs are very simple to work on...IMO, get another amp from parts express if that one can't be fixed...$300-$400.
Sogood51, where on earth did you come up with this statistic? I have rarely heard of problems with quality brands such as Velodyne, REL, or Hsu, one of which Ive owned for a long time with no problems. Perhaps youre thinking of the cheap crap sold with a lot of inexpensive HT gear. There is no reason why a quality made subwoofer amp should not last as long as any other well made amp. And for those occasional repairs that are required I doubt many here owning high-end caliber subs are going to want to throw just any old plate amp in as a replacement.
Finally, the Talon Roc is not an orphan product, but still part of the Talon line. Apparently they have switched sources for amps in their current production and the price is $1600, probably as much as or even than more than Robbyat paid for his Roc. Personally, Id attempt some of the constructive comments in this thread if youre not technically challenged. If these dont bring success look for a good local amplifier tech or try to locate the OEM and see what they have to offer. The Roc is a great product and worth a little effort on your part to find a solution.
And now Richard, its your turn. As a very happy Talon owner I hope you will have some encouraging words to add to this discussion.
Let me ask you a question. At what point does a manufacturer "draw the line" especially when dealing with with products that are sold by second and third parties? I would be much more sympathetic to Robyatt if he had been the orginal purchaser of the Talon Roc and had bought it from Talon through one of it's authorized dealers. If that had been the case, then Rives should have more responsive in their responds to him. The big problems start coming up when products get sold over the Internet by second and third parties, and unauthorized dealers and then something happens to that product. Apparently, you feel that manufacturer should "bend over backwards" to take care of the problem. And the truth is Rives offered to take care of the problem for $1600. If that what it cost to replace the amp, then that's the cost to replace the amp. To expect Talon/Rives to go the "extra mile" for the second owner is unrealistic because let's face it, neither Talon or Rives made any money on that second sale. More and more you're starting to see disclaimers from manufacturers about products sold over the Internet and through unauthorized dealers and second and third parties. Don't believe me, starting visiting some of their websites.
I guess we need to clean up some issues here. First, we bought the assetts to Talon Audio Technologies. The transaction was similar to a bankruptcy sale, in that we did only buy the assetts. Thus technically all speakers made prior to our purchase of the company do not have the company behind it that warranted it. Now, does that mean we would abandon loyal Talon customers--absolutely not. The fact is with speakers unless they are abused failure and warranty repair is very rare. The plate amps are the only thing that we have had any calls on (other than one pair of Hawks that was literaly dropped by Fed-X--what a debacle that was).
To answer the original question about the plate amp: The original plate amp on the ROC was okay, not great. We have found a much better amp, but it's a different size. In order to make it useable for an existing ROC owner we either have to custom make a box for it, or get the ROC sent back in and rework the cabinet to accomodate the new amp. At the price we quoted $1600 we make almost nothing, but I recognized it's not a great value. The customer is paying for cabinet rework which doesn't lead to superior performance. Thus we just ordered one of the new Crown XTI amps and are in the process of testing it. These amps retail for $1000 and may be better than the plate amp we found. We make nothing on the customer buying a Crown amp, they can buy it from many sources. Our company concern is to provide customer service, look for viable solutions for the customer, even if that solution is for them to buy an amplifier from a source other than our own.
In the end, we absolutely want to service prior Talon owners, even second owners, but we can't be financially liable for their repairs or the new Talon will be out of business. We intend to keep the company financially strong and around for many years to come. We will continue product development and will be showing a new speaker at CES. We invite anyone at CES to come visit us there.
Tnadu: Your remarks (with my compliments) are as clear and level headed as any of the responses. You raise cogent and valid points. As you have addressed me, please allow me to further clarify the position I was trying to take.
With Rives now having chimed in with his own perspective, perhaps the view to all will become more clear.
First, I do believe that the used market has risks. I think that if one looks around him, it can be observed that most used markets have risks (as well as potential benefits). As such, I believe that some of my remarks are simply a review of market reality. Let me phrase this more clearly: The best time for a potential buyer to investigate the service level that he can expect from a manufacturer is BEFORE he makes the purchase.
I can understand why my words could be have construed to be defending Rives as a business entity. That was NOT my point. My point was in response to what I percieved of Robyatt's original post. What I observed was an AG member with very minimal forum activity choosing not to communicate with the forum in calm language asking for "what do I do next", but rather communicating with the forum in the manner of a direct FLAME. His message may have been very valid to pass along to the forum, but the style of the message in addressing the forum regarding another member might have been more carefully directed. As Rives has been a long-time contributor to this forum, it seems only appropriate to me to bring to the attention of the readers of this thread the long term positive contributions that he has made. As you yourself said, 'action speaks louder than words'. I believe that is is appropriate to consider ALL of the actions.
Thank-you Rives for clearing up an issue that was a matter of concern to me. Being a Talon owner, I needed to see a response that still kept us Talon owners "in the fold" of the new business plan, ie: warranty and warranty issues...8^)
(Great username by the way!) To answer your question I would say the best manufactures, which by definition are the most customer service oriented, do not draw a line at all. Rather they take pride in their product(s) and stand behind them when a problem arises. This is not to say that they are not entitled to charge a reasonable amount for servicing products that are out of warranty, certainly they are, but my question to you would be what possible difference does it make who the owner is or how they acquired said manufactures product? Why should a manufacturer care whether the current owner is the original owner, or second, or even tenth? With the exception of possible future revenue from out of warranty service and parts (or upgrades) the manufacturer already made their money when they sold to the dealer. How often do we see dealers blowing out their demo equipment, or items that just didnt sell, for at or near dealer cost with full manufacturer warranty? It is how manufactures stand behind their product after the sale that is important, not who the current owner may be.
By second and third parties I assume you are referring to the marketing of used equipment by dealers and private sellers. While it is true that many manufactures are very careful about protecting their dealers interests and want to be sure that their product is properly demonstrated and represented, this applies only to new product and our discussion here is about used gear. Once that initial sale is complete and the product is in the field there is no dealer network to be concerned with, so it brings us back to the question of business ethics and how a manufacturer supports product once it is in the field. My argument is it is not only ethical, but a good business practice to stand behind your product even years after the original sale.
If I understand you correctly, you believe that only original purchasers buying product from authorized dealers deserve quality service from the manufacturer. It is this point that I am in disagreement with. I am certain that the companies I mentioned in my earlier post do not feel this way and they are all extremely successful. Many companies offer transferable warranties to subsequent owners. One of the most successful manufactures of high-end and pro-sound amplification in the world is Bryston who offers a 20 year warranty. They track their amps by serial number and could care less about who owns it (it is my understanding that Bryston has never charged anyone for repair service regardless of the age of the unit). Bryston also maintains such high quality of manufacture, parts quality, and design that their amplifiers rarely fail in the field, thus ensuring them minimal warranty expense.
I am not saying I am sympathetic to Robyatt as I was not privy to his conversations with Rives or even know if he is being completely truthful. I made a point of qualifying this when I stated if it is in fact as you describe and later commenting that we so far only had his side of the story. So my comments have nothing to do with sympathy for his situation, but rather are directed toward business ethics and issues of a manufactures responsibility in supporting what they sell. Obviously not all companies are shining examples of customer service, but clearly some are as my earlier examples clearly show. As a very satisfied Talon owner, and the fact that Talon has only recently changed hands, you can understand my desire to express my view on this subject.
Apparently, you feel that manufacturer should "bend over backwards" to take care of the problem.
No, I do not and certainly not in this case where there is no standing warranty. My only expectation would be that the manufacturer stand behind the product and make every effort to rectify the problem in as timely a manner as possible, regardless of how and when it was acquired. My own experience with Pass Labs described above is an exemplary example, and one could even go so far as to say they bent over backwards to keep one of their products up to spec, especially given they did not charge me anything even though it was out of their stated warranty period.
To expect Talon/Rives to go the "extra mile" for the second owner is unrealistic because let's face it, neither Talon or Rives made any money on that second sale.
I fail to see your logic in this statement. Manufactures never have, and never will, make any money on subsequent used sales of their product, but if they expect to receive good press and reviews, and the loyal customer base that usually follows, they sure better stand behind their product, and treat all their customers the same. As I stated earlier, the used market is an important part of our economy and a wise manufacturer knows this to be true. The customer who buys a used product not only makes it possible for the original owner to upgrade to the newest product, but very often will buy upgrades from the manufacturer for the older product, or even new product in the future.
More and more you're starting to see disclaimers from manufacturers about products sold over the Internet and through unauthorized dealers and second and third parties. Don't believe me, starting visiting some of their websites.
I am aware of this, but once again you are talking about new product, not used. This tends to apply more to really large corporations like Sony that distribute worldwide, and it should be clearly stated in their warranty. If you buy a Nikon camera in the US and expect Nikon USA to provide warranty service you had better be sure that you get it from an authorized US Nikon dealer. It is Nikon USA in California that is providing the warranty service, not Nikon in Japan. Same goes for some brands of audio equipment. In some instances importers such as Nikon USA will not even repair gray market equipment as a way of encouraging people to spend the extra money for authorized US product. As you are probably aware, most reputable dealers of high-end audio equipment who sell via the Internet are restricted by certain manufactures and will not sell those brands if they are available in your local area. Some manufacturers will not allow their dealers to sell mail order at all. But make no mistake, the Internet is here to stay, and as we are all becoming increasingly aware, the brick and mortar model of marketing product will never be the same. In the world of high-end audio, even in larger metropolitan areas it is becoming difficult, if not impossible, to audition and purchase many brands of audio equipment, even that of quite successful companies. As stated in my post above, I purchased my Talon Khorus loudspeakers from the original owner because it was a local sale (he had purchased them in another state before relocating here) and prior to that it was not possible to for me to even hear them without getting on an airplane, much less in my own listening room. I felt very fortunate to find them at all in my local area.
Thanks for joining in here and offering some encouraging words. As a Talon owner it is nice to know you are there to provide service should the need ever arise. Your explanation of the situation with Robyatts model of the Roc makes perfect sense to me and its good to know your side of the story.
Thanks for your kind words and for the clarification. You make a good and valid point about the risks and potential rewards inherent in the used market. It has become my habit whenever buying a product, new or used, to become aware of what to expect in terms of service. Before buying a used item I have often called the manufacturer to let them know that I was considering the purchase of one of their products used and to ask questions. The type of response you get goes a long way to telling you what kind of a company you are dealing with. In high-end audio often you are even talking to the owner. In my experience I have never contacted a manufacturer and not had a positive response to purchasing one of their products used.
Thanks also for sharing your perception of Robyatts first post here on Audiogon. Going back and re-reading it I can see how his complaint could have been expressed differently and how it could be interpreted as a direct flame. As I write this it has been 3 days since he posted here and yet he has had nothing further to say on the subject. Given all of the response this thread has generated I find it odd that he has nothing more to offer, especially since Rives response. None-the-less, it has provided for a thoughtful discussion.
The response from Rives clears up the big question, namely, the $1600 repair cost (much of which is labor to rework the cabinet). This makes sense. The remaining question is if it's possible for someone (other than Talon/Rives)to provide / replace the buzzing transformer (or whatever) in the amp. Is the company still in business? How is their reputation for repairS? Who are they?
As someone who bought his Talons new, I am glad to hear that Rives will service them at a reasonable price for either me or whomever I sell them to.
I am a little mystified by the concern many companies have about product sold over the internet or by unauthorized dealers. How did the product get into the hands of the unauthorized dealer? If it wasn't stolen or extorted, and isn't counterfeit, they should be obligated to stand behind it. It should not be up to the consumer to have to verify that a dealer is authorized. Do you check with DeWalt to see if Home Depot is an authorized dealer before you buy a saw? The manufacturer made it, sold it, made their money, and agreed to provide warranty. How have they suffered a loss that justifies weasling out of warranty obligations? If their loss is due to loss of image because someone is turning their product from an exclusive boutique product into a commodity, I can understand that. In this case, the manufacturer should just shut off the dealer who is violating the marketing plan. Every major audio component is serialized, and the company should know who they sent each unit to. If they keep wholesaling their product to dealers who discount it, they have no right to complain.
While manufacturers have a legal right to do what's in their financial interests, so do we. We should continually publicize manufacturers who have bad attitudes toward second owners. This should drive the used price of their products downward, which will hopefully dissuade new buyers from buying their products. If companies that are openly hostile to the used market, like Theta, hear enough people say their product is great, but can't stand the depreciation when they go to sell it, maybe they will change. On the other hand, companies that treat 2d owners well (like AtmaSphere)should be rewarded with high used market prices, to encourage people to buy new without fear of losing everything.
Interesting topic and good discussion. Anyway, was browsing the speakers sales this morning and noticed that a 'goner was selling a "NEW/FACTORY SEALED BOX" of VS VR-1s.
I also know that VS has a policy about Internet sales of their speakers which states "ANY NEW VSA PRODUCT SOLD OVER THE INTERNET, BY OTHER THAN OUR ONE AUTHORIZED ONLINE DEALER, WILL NOT HAVE ANY WARRANTY."
Now this is the sort of thing that leads to misunderstandings between customers and manufacturers. No doubt the individual buying these speakers from this seller (and I'm assuming the seller is NOT an authorized dealer) will probably, and erroneously, assume that the speakers are under VS's warranty. So what happens, if couple months down the road, one of the speakers develops some problems? No doubt, VS would fix the speaker, but should the repair be covered "as if" the speaker was under warranty (which unless the seller is an authorized dealer, it is clearly not) or should they charge the buyer (who will "no doubt" be upset to find out his "NEW/FACTORY SEALED BOX" of VS VR-1 speakers didn't include a warranty) the cost of doing the repairs on his speaker?
BTW, I sent the seller the following message:
"Are you an authorized Von Schweikert dealer? If not you might want to mention the speakers will not being under warranty (see link - http://www.vonschweikert.com/_pricesus.htm). Just mentioning this because someone buying these "NEW" speakers might assume that they would be under Von Schweikert warranty, and if you're not a dealer that's not the case."
Hopefully, he'll amend his ad, and mention about the lack of warranty, but nevertheless, I think you can see some of the points I was trying to make about warranty issues and second/third party sales and manufacturers and who's responsible for what.
Cleaned up - You are absolutely right that this is the condition of the market right now. I do not think that it is right, though. How did this guy get these speakers? Did Von Schweikert sell them to him, make his fair profit? If this is a one time deal because of some special circumstance, it shouldn't be such a big deal to VS. If this is a recurring problem, VS should stop selling speakers to him. While VS seems to have the LEgAL right to do what he wants, it seems like from a perspective of fairness, he should take responsibility for his product.
Well heard back from the seller, and apparently he won these speakers in a drawing at an audio show. Also, the seller does a fair amount of business on Audiogon, and has a good reputation. Nevertheless, the seller also thinks that VS would provide warranty on these speakers since they are not "gray market" speakers, even though VS website is quite clear about on-line sales and warranties. I emailed VS and asked them what their thoughts are, and if I get a reply, I'll let you know what VS thinks on this matter. One more thing, I see the seller lower his price, since I let him know that VS had significantly lowered it's price on the VR-1 in the particular finish that he is selling. Apparently the finish is being discontinued.
You know what I just found out from one editor of a prominent Audiophile magazine. The original post from Robyatt was sent to them as a letter to the editor to be published. The editor also recognized that it was not one for publication, but instead sent it on to me to be aware that the individual was doing that.
I will say it does bother me that we went out of our way to look for a solution from a different company, where we make no money, and the result is a very negative post here and letters to editors in the audiophile community.
This is Robyatt.I contacted the original owner he rang Rives independently asked about haveing the sub repaired under warrenty-HE GOT THE SAME ANSWER I DID!!!! $1600 for repair, or do it yourself!! You guys who support manufacturers that take your money and then don't support their products unless you pay a enough money you could have bought a new product-STOP think would you except this type of treatment if say your fridge went bad?? You paid $1500 for your GE fridge freezer two years ago now it doesn't work, they say we can fix it,$1100, DO YOU BUY GE again????? High End manufacturers like Rives need too wake up!! Their customer base is getting older, and smaller-you can't steal from the guys who are left.
I see that a certain audiophile mags editor fowarded my email for their letters section to Rives! My story of "warning" was to fellow audiophiles to make their own decision. So far it has not been published by anyone. I realise I do not pay the Audiophile "rags" advertising revenue! Does anyone out there think, like me, that the editor -WARNING, the manufacturer who advertises in his mag about a complaint, reaks of collusion???
I sent the email to 6 moons, Stereophile, and TAS. Only one gave me the courtesy of a reply, see below!!
Thank you for letting me know of the problem you are having with your Talon speaker and the lack of service you feel you are getting form the new owner. I am not sure if there is anything I can do to help, unfortunately.
I wish to appologise I did not mean to use the word "steal". I just feel that tere are many great companies that do go above and beyond, but in this case my personal experience, with Rives and Talon was not even close. I should mention, I had to call Richard, as a friend owns Talons and suggested, I should. I was willing to pay for repair and was expecting "send us the plate amp we will have it checked". There is no name on the amp both internally or externally and seams to be made of premade boards from different sources. I ordered a $300 plate amp from DIY Express with the same specs, and had a woodworker friend modify the cabinet for $75. A far cry from $1600!
I would like to mention here that in my past dealings with Mike Farnsworth of Talon he most definitely went "above and beyond" the call of duty when I had a slight problem with a Talon purchase a few years back. Mike bent over backwards to my total satisfaction in order to make me happy. More people like Mike would be a blessing in this industry. my 2 cents...
Robyatt, you keep singing the same tune, but yer off key, your pitch is messed up and the timing isn't close, and it's sung to the wrong music!
Richard Bird offered to help you in such a way as to cover his costs to repair of your sub, or suggested another option on a speaker you bought used! You have spurned his offer thinking that he should do it for free.
The GE example you suggested has nothing in common with this situation. GE sold the original fridge, and is still owned by the same person!!!
You're starting to sound like a little kid on the playground who didn't get his way in a 'kickball' game. You don't care about facts or reason, you want what you want regardless of how unreasonable.
I think you should start a lobby to get a whole new speaker system including the sub, have Talon run out of business by the government, have Richard Bird arrested and sentenced to prison, and to allow you to keep all the income that Rives or Talon ever had the chance to make...
Collusion on the part of the magazine!!! As if this was worthy of a response... There would be no space for articles if every whiner who wrote a letter about not getting their own way were published. The editor handled this wisely, he passed it on to someone who could possibly do something about it, not knowing that he had tried and you wanted more!
Richard Bird did not own the company when you bought the speakers! I don't see how he is responsible for the problem. If he chose to repair them out of the kindness of his heart, wow, props to him. If not... his choice.
When my truck or motorcycle break down, I pay to have them repaired. When I had my Klyne pre-amp worked on, I paid for it, when I had work done on my CDP, I paid for it, I don't expect anyone else to foot the bill, and I bought them.
I've never bought anything from Richard Bird (although I have owned Talon speakers) but I've wasted a lot of his time, both on the phone and in person at Audio shows. I have never found him to be anything but personable, helpful, and knowledgable. BWDIK
If you bought a used GE fridge, out of warrantee, then lost the compressor, I'd expect you'd get a repair estimate that would make a new fridge look attractive.
With regard to your letter finding its way to Rives, I applaud the magazine for taking an interest in trying to help you. It's doubtful your letter would have made it into publication, but at least they didn't ignore your problem. My assumption is that they were trying to help you and Rives. I see no collusion in that.
Am I surprised that a DIY project that cost $375 (likely with an inferior amp versus the improved version Rives wanted to provide) cost $1,600 when performed by a manufacturer? Not at all. Anyone who is shocked by this doesn't understand the financial realities of manufacturing.
I, too, have never bought anything from Rives, nor have I owned Talson speakers, but, like others, I am sensitive to the harsh and somewhat careless manner in which you treat this man's reputation and livelihood. Rives has been a valued member of this community for years, providing valuable insight in a thoughtful and professional manner.
High end audio is a small world. It's important to consider the impact of your words before you hit the "submit" key.
I missed this thread the first time through, but boy is it a good one! Looks like Robyatt needs to understand that "bend over backwards service" is not a given in the high end it is a BONUS. Under the circumstances some companies might have helped, a lot probably would not have. I'm sure I would be pissed if my "new" subwoofer needed a $1600 amp, but when I buy used I NEVER expect warranty service. When buying used it is always buyer beware unless an express warranty is provided. Robyatt was just unlucky in this circumstance.
I am surprised no one addressed the actual issue and got answers here.. I mean if a warranty is up its up? Was this sub still under warranty, I doubt that, if it was then it is a problem, but it seems it was WELL over and anybody would have to pay after that regardless if the company changed hands, You don't get lifetime warranty just because you think you should, we all pay after some point.
What year is the Sub?
What year did you buy it?
And what is Talons Warranty time period on it?
Probably not past 3 years, and 1 year on the amp.. would be the standard on most subs I have ever seen.
The original owner says it is still under warrenty! I rang and offered to pay, as at the time, I did not know if it was, or was not, under warrenty. I gave a lady, who now I am ttold no longer works at Rives/Talon, the serial number. SStill no one at the company has confirmed or denied if it iis, or isn't, warrentied. To me a simple solution would have been, please send us the plate amp and we will have it checked. Yes sir it is faulty, we can fix it send us a cheque for $100 or 250 or 350....... So I do get the out of warrenty concept. What everyone who says Rives did the right thing, don't know is the phone attitude that I got when I called them(they never called me back). They don't want to help, except for an unreaonable amount of money, for the problem concerned.
Hate to say it, but I think in this situation, it's all about Robyatt. I think Rives was pretty upfront about what was needed to repair the subwoofer amp, and I think that they were willing to do it at cost, but apparently, that wasn't good enought for our friend, Robyatt. Glad he found a cheaper solution, and I certainly hope it works out for him, but nevertheless, I think with Robyatt, there was no way to make this guy happy. People need to remember that customer service (in the best sense), is a two way street.
Robyatt, I realize in your first post & combination of your last post of clarity, this is purely about customer service then... Okay you got a not so stellar treatment, you had questions that were not satisfied.. However this does not mean that a company owes you extended warranty, it is very possible depending how old the sub is that it should be covered, but I think it is more than likely it is older than the short warrantys given with a sub.. Most would have a very short period, tops normally 3 years, maybe 5, but I doubt 5 on the amp... So you were not given what you wanted to hear, that is understandable, but your not even sure how old the unit is, or was when you bought it, I would start there next time.
I don't see any info on Rives/Talon site for warranty, so now I am curious, all the speakers I buy I can go on each of their websites right now and it is very clearly stated what the warranty periods are on each component, most subs are however broken down with like 3 years on all craftsmanship and driver/cabinet etc.., and 1 year on plate amps from what I have seen. Some of the higher end guys probably offer 5 years total, I would figure out the age of the unit, and Via serial # Rives should have a way to find out, but then again they might not even have anymore info on it than you from the original company owners.
"The original owner says it is still under warrenty! "
From Rives: "we bought the assetts to Talon Audio Technologies. The transaction was similar to a bankruptcy sale, in that we did only buy the assetts. Thus technically all speakers made prior to our purchase of the company do not have the company behind it that warranted it."
My conclusion: the original owner misled you, but you chose to believe it. You bought some used gear, from a bankrupt manufacturer, to save money, took a risk, and on this occasion it did not pay off. Buying used is like that. Sometimes it doesn't work out.
Rives offered to help, but a like-for-like replacement was not available, so the cost of rework was higher than it would otherwise have been.
You got unlucky, but I don't see why Rives owes you any service at a loss to his company.
I am done with this! I repaired the sub throgh my own efforts and for minimal cost. So all you Rives/Talon sympathizers, go ahead buy some Talon speakers with confidence. I wish you good luck, and good listening. May the music be with you!
Robyatt: I think you may have missed the point. You suggest that many here are simply 'Rives/Talon sympathizers', and that is simply not what I hear being said.
The Audiogon Forums are not the wild wild west as may be the case on other sites. This is a moderated site, some might say sometimes overly aggressively. There are many who have written on this thread who have participated here for many years. We get to know each. We have almost all had extensive experience in the Audio Marketplace and particularly the USED Auto Marketplace. As with most 'groups' or affiliations, there are informal rules and conventions.
Many on this forum routinely go WAY out of their way to help others, with knowledge, with experience, with wisdom. I think there are many here who were inclined at first to be concerned with you difficulty. However, I believe that what matters to many is the MANNER in which business and affairs are conducted here. Choosing to personally attack a long standing forum member (who as I stated before has often been observed to go out of his way to help others in the 'Audiogon Way'), unfortuntately, did very little to further your cause here. This reaction is simply no different that what one would experience in most 'groups'.
The point is that this is a pretty helpful and forgiving place, and I think many would like to see it remain that way. Join in...get to know the gang. One unfortunate experience with audio gear is not the kind of thing that needs to change your personal perspective of enjoying the music and the gear.
Robyatt has done much to aggravate in this situation, but in all fairness, he was not looking for warranty or free service, but reasonably priced serice. As Talon / Rives was not the manufacturer of the amp, they were not able to provide this. They were willing to do what they could, at a price that was reasonable for what they had to do. It seems like a better solution would have been for Rives to refer Robyatt to the original manufacturer of the amp, who, if they are still in business and a reputable company, should have been able to repair it for a few hundred dollars.