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  1. #26
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    Wow, I guess I have to clear a few things up regarding my posts here. First I would like to say that when I started this thread I never told anyone to stay away from, or never buy, PSB speakers. In fact we are very pleased with the sound and value of our PSB speakers, we DO own FIVE of them, building on our original Stratus purchase. I donít think I have criticized their performance at all, I only offer up my experience so that others can take it into consideration, maybe ask important service related questions upon purchase. I by no means implied that others are guaranteed to have similar experiences, I am just reporting mine, and even if no one cares what I have gone through, it has been very therapeutic.
    I purchased my speakers from an authorized dealer, but they were no longer able to assist me. When I wanted to add another speaker to my setup, I went to the nearest town that has an authorized dealer to buy my PSB C5i center channel. When I experienced their excellent customer service I brought up our speaker problem, and he suggested we send them back to PSB for repair. As I have noted above, I later turned to this dealer for help, which they promptly offered. I still have the original receipt and completed warranties so there has been no questions as to the legitimacy of my purchase.
    I understand that not every PSB customer is treated the way I have been treated by the company, I am only posting my experience, which is real. I have all the dates times and names of all the people I have been in contact with. And since I only had one phone number, for the longest time I was dealing with L. who is just one person. It is entirely possible that I just wasnít as important to her as other things and thatís why I got the service that I did. I have called Paul Barton himself and had him call back saying that he was very busy but that he would get to the bottom of it, and have someone call me back. The problem was that no one did. If someone uses this experience to not purchase PSB themselves, then perhaps they were uncertain about the purchase in the first place, because this thread alone should not be reason enough to not purchase a product. Now that doesnít mean that I will personally buy from them again, but that is just me, and this is the first time I have said so.
    I know mistakes do happen, and that things like this can occur even with the very best of customer service staff. I DO think that someone over there should have called me back to apologize for the poor service, as there is really no good excuse. Iím not asking for free speakers or something outrageous, just a simple "Weíre really sorry this happened to youĒ would be acceptable. But that hasnít happened.

  2. #27
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    Don't apologize for other people's incompetence.

    I think this is a great thread and very helpful to anyone interested in audio products. You should neither apologize for your content nor for the doughnuts that you had the misfortune of dealing with. It only takes one person to screw up an entire company's reputation and every CEO knows this. We're all big boys and girls here and can certainly decide for ourselves whether or not this thread will effect our decision making process.

    The old adage in sales is "If you don't take care of your customers don't worry, someone else will."

    Keep up the good work.

  3. #28
    RGA
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    Woochifer - See Skeptic.

    Look at any dealer selling kits versus fully made...the kit is usually not the deal it should be.

    You are correct I left out the cost of the repair(the biggest costs probably dwarfing the others) plus the cost of the replacement cabinet which is likely the most expensive part of the entire speaker...but I did say the issue was not resolved. You are correct that fixing the unit probably would take more man hours that building a new one. But that only supports cumulatively that the cost of a new box, the time involved and the labour to fix it probably dwarfs the price of just sending a new product out the day they saw the clunker come back in. Routing the call overseas would cost more money(and now it is you who is making assumptioms)...a lot of call centers are in Canada for the cheaper labour.

    If the speaker's retail is not 10 times the materials cost I'd be very surprised. I did read that the 303 in cost of parts is $30.00.

    It's not terribly difficult...go and look at speakers with Vifa or other KNOWN drivers and you can track down the prices. I have seen 1k speakers that have total driver costs under $70.00 - again retail...companies buying in big numbers probably get that down at least 50%. Add up the cost of the 4 meters worth of cheap wood and a crossover and we're at what $150.00 and I think this is really really a high high figure. Yes labour is costly but most of this stuff is built in China these days...less so speakers perhaps...but machines and drill presses can probably dole out a speaker within ten minues...depending on the size of the company - probably far less for big guys like B & W, JBL and Paradigm.

    I agree with Skeptic on this for the most part. I would be oipen to kits - but I want to hear the speaker first...then if I liked it I would buy the kit.

  4. #29
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    To I'm a Canadian

    I hope I didn't come across as slamming you as that wasn't my intention at all. I was just annoyed with all the perceptions on poor quality of PSB speakers in general that were based soley on your bad experience. I do feel your pain and no one should haveto jump through hoops like that. Thats just poor Customer support no matter how you look at it. In fact I was soannoyed with your dilemna that I went hunting for a "contact us" link on PSB's web page to give them a "wake up" email and linking in your post. But I got side tracked at work as usual.
    Will resume the hunt again today. Good luck!!

  5. #30
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    Mar 25:
    Took speaker into ĎThe StereoManí today and talked to the service manager. He told me that he had been called so much by Paul Barton and C. (near the end of the first journal she is mentioned) regarding my speaker and that he had better be getting a Christmas card from them now. He said that Mr. Barton is very concerned about our experience, and has arranged everything so that a new cabinet is waiting in Pickering Ontario (their main office/repair depot) for our speaker to arrive. Now this service manager has never given me any reason not to trust him, but I have been put on guard from my previous experience and I will wait to see what happens. I typed up a five-page letter that I was going to mail out to Mr. Barton yesterday; it included the above journal plus some added detail. The point of it was to completely inform Mr. Barton of our experience (my wife and I) and point out that we were made to feel like we were inconveniencing them somehow. Anyway, I didnít send the letter after the talk with the service manager, but have decided to sit on it for a bit more and see what happens now.

  6. #31
    Forum Regular 46minaudio's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RGA
    Woochifer - See Skeptic.

    Look at any dealer selling kits versus fully made...the kit is usually not the deal it should be.

    You are correct I left out the cost of the repair(the biggest costs probably dwarfing the others) plus the cost of the replacement cabinet which is likely the most expensive part of the entire speaker...but I did say the issue was not resolved. You are correct that fixing the unit probably would take more man hours that building a new one. But that only supports cumulatively that the cost of a new box, the time involved and the labour to fix it probably dwarfs the price of just sending a new product out the day they saw the clunker come back in. Routing the call overseas would cost more money(and now it is you who is making assumptioms)...a lot of call centers are in Canada for the cheaper labour.

    If the speaker's retail is not 10 times the materials cost I'd be very surprised. I did read that the 303 in cost of parts is $30.00.

    It's not terribly difficult...go and look at speakers with Vifa or other KNOWN drivers and you can track down the prices. I have seen 1k speakers that have total driver costs under $70.00 - again retail...companies buying in big numbers probably get that down at least 50%. Add up the cost of the 4 meters worth of cheap wood and a crossover and we're at what $150.00 and I think this is really really a high high figure. Yes labour is costly but most of this stuff is built in China these days...less so speakers perhaps...but machines and drill presses can probably dole out a speaker within ten minues...depending on the size of the company - probably far less for big guys like B & W, JBL and Paradigm.

    I agree with Skeptic on this for the most part. I would be oipen to kits - but I want to hear the speaker first...then if I liked it I would buy the kit.
    RGA while I agree the parts a inexpensive its more to it than that..Factorys to build these products. The cost of these factorys has to be figured in.Tooling such a CNC routers,saws,and other tools can be huge,and need to be repaired/replaced often.The cost of blades bits and other items need to be figured in..Labor cost,Insurance,SS,and electric bills need to be figured in.R&D has to be figired in also..Im sure there is more..

  7. #32
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    Send the letter.

    Quote Originally Posted by IAmCanadian
    Mar 25:
    Took speaker into ĎThe StereoManí today and talked to the service manager. He told me that he had been called so much by Paul Barton and C. (near the end of the first journal she is mentioned) regarding my speaker and that he had better be getting a Christmas card from them now. He said that Mr. Barton is very concerned about our experience, and has arranged everything so that a new cabinet is waiting in Pickering Ontario (their main office/repair depot) for our speaker to arrive. Now this service manager has never given me any reason not to trust him, but I have been put on guard from my previous experience and I will wait to see what happens. I typed up a five-page letter that I was going to mail out to Mr. Barton yesterday; it included the above journal plus some added detail. The point of it was to completely inform Mr. Barton of our experience (my wife and I) and point out that we were made to feel like we were inconveniencing them somehow. Anyway, I didnít send the letter after the talk with the service manager, but have decided to sit on it for a bit more and see what happens now.
    Any owner with his name on the company will value that letter because is will allow them better insight to where the system broke down. It's always easier to fix something when you know exactly what's broken. You'll actually be saving him money and time by detailing the failure in customer service. Don't worry, you will not be insulting him. In fact, you will be helping him as well as other PSB owners. Send it.

  8. #33
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    If that Mr. Barton knew what he was doing he would offer some kind of compensation, such as a free upgrade to the next model up on their line. It is the least they could do to maintain proper reputation.
    I have a friend who bought an e-machines computer at Costco about 5 years ago. The computer had a 3 year warrantee and had broke down at 2 years and 11 months. He brings it back to Costco and asks them whats up with it. Costco says that it's beyond repair and offers him a new model of the e-machines right after that. Now that's service.

    No one wants to wait around filling out numerous forms and checking validity.

  9. #34
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    Some things are simply worth repeating.

    Quote Originally Posted by topspeed
    Any owner with his name on the company will value that letter because is will allow them better insight to where the system broke down. It's always easier to fix something when you know exactly what's broken. You'll actually be saving him money and time by detailing the failure in customer service. Don't worry, you will not be insulting him. In fact, you will be helping him as well as other PSB owners. Send it.
    What he said... times two!

    Ya can't pinpoint and fix a problem if you don't know where it is.

  10. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by 92135011
    I have a friend who bought an e-machines computer at Costco about 5 years ago. The computer had a 3 year warrantee and had broke down at 2 years and 11 months. He brings it back to Costco and asks them whats up with it. Costco says that it's beyond repair and offers him a new model of the e-machines right after that. Now that's service.
    Costco recently changed their return policies on computers. Now it's 6 months, no questions asked. After that you are at the mercy of the manufacturer's warranty. But that *still* is a lot better than 99% of retailers, I had to return several laptops there over the past year, one of them 4 months after I'd bought it, and never had any difficulty whatsoever.

    Their return policy is the only reason I bought some speakers there sound unheard.

  11. #36
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    Unhappy Important! Please Help!

    March 29:
    I donít know how to report what has happened as I am at a loss for words. I have to warn you that I am very upset right now, and that may colour what I am about to right. We were called today by J.Earl, who is the PSB regional manager for Ontario, and he informed my wife and me that they cannot repair our speaker as they went out of production 6-8 months ago. This raises a few very important questions... WHY TELL us to send it back in the first place? Why TELL the service manager at ďThe StereoManĒ to send it back to Pickering Mr. Barton if you know you canít repair it? WHY tell us that this will all be over quickly to make us happy considering our previous customer service? WHY has no one ever told us this and many other pertinent facts about our situation? Earl informed us that we had one of two choices: Fork out ONE THOUSAND MORE dollars for a Stratus Silver or take a replacement from their lower line of Image series ON PAR! We didnít know what to say and so we told him we would have to think about this.
    We immediately called the service manager at the PSB dealer that was handling the repair and he was like ďWho said WHAT?Ē. We had to tell him numerous times as he was as surprised as we were. He said the Image series option wouldnít do us justice as we have a Stratus c5i center that we JUST purchased. Besides that, my wife and I turned down the Image series in favour of the Stratus because we liked it MORE, and were willing to spend MORE for the difference, now were being asked to settle for less or spend A THOUSAND DOLLARS MORE?!?!?
    I am out of my mind and I donít know what to do. What should I do? Anyone, I value your opinions, what should I do next? I canít believe this nightmare is just getting worse. I donít know what to do. Please help.
    Last edited by IAmCanadian; 03-29-2004 at 04:18 PM.

  12. #37
    Forum Regular thepogue's Avatar
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    first things first...

    i know you dont want to...but i've got to understand the pricing here....IF (and i know you dont want to) i mean IF you did give him a grand and move up...how much would he be giving you for your speakers....(100% value?...150%....???)

    i know this sounds weird but i need to get the facts right before i tell you to drive there and kill..er...i mean tell you what to do next....

    so once again in the grand sceme of things how much is he giving you for the faulty speaks?


    and brudda...relax...we'll get the bum! waiting...
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  13. #38
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    He is giving us 100% value of our Stratus Bronze speakers when we bought them. They were 12.5 months old when we sent them in for repair the first time. We have seen them 6 days since. The stratus Silver price is 2400.

  14. #39
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    We will have to add the extra tax as well, another 15%.

  15. #40
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    They came with a 5 year warranty from the PSB authorized dealer we bought them off of. The veneer peeling was a problem that must have occurred during the drying process, and was a manufacturerís defect. The second time it was shipped to us damaged from them. Why warranty something for five years if thatís NOT THE PLAN???

  16. #41
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    That 5 year warranty has me curious.

    Is there any weasel wording in it that might allow them to pull this off legally since your model is out of production? If not, I would assume they have to either make it good or replace them.

    And, if they CAN pull this off by claiming the model no longer exists, this would put a big question mark on their willingness to stand by their products in general. Heck, most companies change their products almost yearly.

    If I were them, I would be calling every distributor and/or dealer trying to locate at least one NOS item to replace your bad one.

    I, for one, would look long and hard before dropping big bucks into this companies products if this the type of factory support I would get. There are many other good speakers out there.

  17. #42
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    The 5 year warranty covers the whole speaker we were told when we bought it. "If it breaks within 5 years, bring it back" they said. PSB were also the ones that told us about the problem during the 'curing' stage, thus the manufac. defect comment.

  18. #43
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    Well, in my simple mind, being they are the manufacturer and they admit it's a manufacturing defect, they should make it right. You guys have small claims court up there?

    I wonder if the boys at Audioholics got anywhere with their helping you. Did you ever get in contact with Paul himself?

  19. #44
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    The last we heard form Mr. Barton himself was when our speaker was in the first time and he called us back in the morning to tell us he would have someone from PSB call us back (no one did btw).
    Also, we were told that he was in contact frequently with the service manager at 'The StereoMan' during the six days we had the speaker back from the first repair as that dealer was handling our second return. The service manager told us that Mr. Barton was a hands on kinda guy and that he was on top of this one as he was very interested in having it resolved quickly. The service manager told us he was told they had a cabinet that was all ready to go as soon as our speaker arrived in Pickering. All of this came as a complete shock to the service manager when we told him. This dealer has never given me any reason to doubt him, nor do I feel he has the motive to lie. On the contrary, all the service and treatment we have received from him and his staff has been exceptional and trustworthy.

  20. #45
    Forum Regular thepogue's Avatar
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    this is the way i'd go

    i'd call him back and tell him after thinking 'bout it that's a bad deal all the way 'round so you want one of two things

    if they want to replace them but they dont make that model any more i want the next step UP not across or down....it's PBS bad so you should be gaining not losing ground!

    if he says no-go then i'd say then give me 100% of my money back because they cant live up to their warranty and the product is not good quality.

    if he still gives you grief then i'd ask to speak to his boss and start again.

    once i got to the next level I'd do the above and add the following...

    I'd also add that your returning the center channel you just bought and that you'll never again buy any products from them...i'd also mention that you spend lots of time on BB's and will tell this tale for years to come when ANYONE about your products i'll re-tell whats happened here...I'd also add that i will be filing a complaint w/the Better Buss. Bureau.....i'd tell them I'm going to call the local TV station and newspaper and find out if they have any consumer protection shows (locally we have channel 10....it's called 10 on YOUR side and they LOVE to hassle big companies)... I'd also put loads of pressure on the local dealer (like saying I'll not buy ANYTHING here if this dont get fixed) in this way they will help put pressure on the company....i'd also tell them your writing a letter to all the hi-fi rags to tell them this nightmare!!...also I'm not sure but here in the states we can contact the local attorney general's officeto report fraud (as in the 5 year warranty) but lets face it NOT ONE of the above will make it all right...it's the realization that YOUR NOT GOING AWAY!!...YOU'LL BE A SUPER THORN IN THIER SIDE......and all they need to do to make it right is give you whats RIGHTFULLY YOURS!!..(goods or cash)...also ask the big wig if YOU can contact dealers yourself and find a new set of speakers (the ones they don't make!)...if he's really on the "up and up" why would it matter?...just another way to make his head spin... also tell him you'd take a dealer demo (the NEXT step up!!) in trade...alos mention your fully aware that the mark-up is so great you could give your flagship model (demo) and not lose a cent

    if you kick and scream enough (and of course wait...sorry to say) i think at the very least you should get your cash back...

    make sure you let them know that you'll not stop till you get your money back...tell them it's the principle and even if it cost more you'll not stop trying......and just be civil and keep hammering home "It's NOT MY FAULT YOUR SPEAKERS FELL APART"......now get out there...

    if you need more steam email me and i'll give you me phone number and i'll have you camped out on thier doorstep before the weekend hits!!! let me know whats what..

    thepogue@yahoo.com
    Last edited by thepogue; 03-29-2004 at 03:35 PM.
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  21. #46
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    Damn Straight I Will!

  22. #47
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    Aiieeee!!!!!

  23. #48
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    And that letter I wrote to Paul Barton will be going out tomorrow, after I have a chance to make a few changes.

  24. #49
    RGA
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    Well I can tell you which company I will never buy from...I hope they're reading this...everyone I talk to is even remotely interesting in the POS company I will warn....the morons running PSB are probably still wondering why no self respecting high end dealer carries them...you'll see them in bargain basement Futureshop within 5 years. Print this post and in 5 years we'll see if I'm right.

    Now on to your problem. No they have to replace your speaker. They are OBLIGATED to carry parts for your spekaer from 7 years from the last model run. Otherwise you get the replacement model. If there is no replacement model you get your money back - or an agreement like taking a higher model.

    For instance I bought a Lezmark all in one. My warranty goes 3 years. If it breaks beyond repair they replace it with the same model...if ot available the replacement model.

    I'm not 100% sure I'm right in this but I would post this on the speaker forum over at AudioAsylum because a lot of lawyers and doctors hang out there. Hey high end forum after all. Plus let's spread the word out a bit more - this is absolutely disgusting service by this outfit. http://www.audioasylum.com/audio/speakers/bbs.html

  25. #50
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    Thanks for the link, I have posted over on their forum as well now.

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