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venting - i'm no longer a "sony slut"

Discussion in 'Other Off Topic Forum' started by Doody, Mar 27, 2005.

  1. Doody

    Doody F1 Veteran

    Nov 16, 2001
    6,099
    MA USA
    Full Name:
    Mr. Doody
    i've been a sony vaio notebook fan now since they released their first laptop back in 97 or so. i was an avid "sony slut". since then i've owned the 705, an x505, an sr7, an srx99, and now an s360. i also bought my wife a sony desktop a few years back.

    my new VGN-S360P bit the dust yesterday. i was typing away and BAM it just went dark. no response of any sort from anything. nothing could get it to make a whirr or light any light. dead as a doornail. i had owned it for 41 days. my assumption is that the main board committed suicide somehow. the battery won't power anything. the ac won't power anything. the HD never moves. etc. etc.

    up until this point i had NEVER experienced any major problem with a sony computer. some minor crap, but nothing i couldn't trivially deal with. i've never had to ship a sony computer back to sony for service. they "just worked". and needless to say i've bought one or two other sony products over the past few decades!

    no real data loss - everything had been backed up the night before - just a saturday of emails and goofing around. no real work lost.

    so i figure, eh, statistics are statistics, i guess i was due. sony will take care of me.

    unfortunately, sony apparently isn't about taking are of its customers (even its good ones). this will be the last sony computer i'll buy and i'll think twice before i buy any other sony electronic product.

    i called the support people. they were nice enough. they said i'd have to ship the unit back to them to be repaired. no problemo - i expected as much. i told them i really couldn't be without it and what i'd like to do is have them charge my credit card for a new computer, overnight that to me (at my expense) and i'd swap the hard drives and ship the busted computer back to them (at my expense), and they'd credit my card and we'd be all set.

    no dice. it's a 3 week (maybe 4 depending upon shipping) affair. they don't offer a swap service like that on laptops....

    "Huh? You offer it on other products - you did it for me on a DAT player once."
    "Yeah, we do offer it for other products - like computer monitors."
    "Monitors? Why? everybody has an extra monitor or has access to an extra via a buddy or the office?"
    "Well, I don't know, we just offer that for monitors."
    "That's insane. Why don't you offer it for laptops? Nobody who has a laptop die wants to be without their laptop, do they?"
    "Well, no, but we don't offer that service."

    "Okay, how about this - you guys charge me for a motherboard and overnight it to me. I've taken apart a couple of my other vaios - i doubt this one is very different. I'll swap the motherboards, ship the busted one back to you and you credit my card."
    "Hmmmm, well, we can't do that either."
    "Why? I'll stipulate that it'll void my warranty."
    "Well, we're just not set up to do that."
    "If I wanted an extra battery or a CDROM drive you'd sell me that, right?"
    "Sure."
    "So you can take my money - please take my money and ship me a motherboard."
    "We can't do that."

    and so on and so forth. i don't really need to go much further than that - everybody gets the point. i *****ed up the chain, zero help. totally clueless people.

    so i'm working on my backup laptop (the srx99).

    after all the great things i've heard about ibm's support for their thinkpads i feel like a heel for buying my FIFTH sony laptop (truth be told, the only reason i didn't buy the ibm x40 was 'cuz their web site wouldn't take my order - a different kind of frustration).

    i'd implore everybody out there to make sure they understand the service policies of the critical computers they buy for business use. don't get screwed when you need the support most!!!!

    doody.
     
  2. teak360

    teak360 F1 Veteran
    Silver Subscribed

    Nov 3, 2003
    9,217
    Boulder, CO
    Full Name:
    Scott
    Unfortunately the whole world is heading in this direction.
    Examples in the last month:

    I called my ISP to check on my transfer; DSL from one line to another in my house.
    After being without DSL for two weeks (no they can't hook up the new one, then disconnect the old one!) I am told by the ISP support people
    "Oh, DSL is not available on the new line, just the old one we disconnected."

    I called my cell phone company to check on the porting of a land line number to my cell phone. The order had been in for two weeks and the land line had already been disconnected because of the port request (made by the cell pone company), thus no incoming business calls! Cell phone company: "Oh, we can't port that particular number to a cell phone."

    I call ISP tech support after I get the DSL issue above resolved. I can log on but can't access all web pages for some reason.
    The tech's first statement: "First we make sure you have dsl line to modem"
    I explain that I can log on and do have some internet access, so it is unlikely the line is disconnected.
    The tech's second statement: "Maybe modem unplugged"
    Oh boy, here we go.
    The tech's third statement: "Maybe no cable from modem to pc".
    Time to hang up................
     
  3. Ike

    Ike F1 Rookie

    Nov 4, 2003
    3,488
    I think IBM either sold or moved their pc division to a company in China. They may be a little different now.

    I have a gateway laptop that I have had bad service with too. the left arrow button stopped a while after I bought it. I took it to the gateway store and they couldn't do anything but sell me another one. It was still under warranty but they didn't sell this one anymore and they couldn't get parts for it. They wanted me to buy a new one with a small discount and they would give me a longer warranty on that one. I decided to just be without an arrow key. I really have had no other problems with it. It is really old with a 550 celeron in it. I've put xp on it and it runs just about anything I need.
     
  4. Tomf-1

    Tomf-1 F1 Rookie

    Jan 17, 2004
    4,468
    Leawood KS/ South FL
    Full Name:
    Thomas P
    about an hour ago, my DSL disconnected me right in the middle of writing a very important email......

    at this writing, i m on the phone with SBC service support. mrs roy however has to excuse herself for a few minutes to tend to her new born baby whose voice can be heard crying in the background......

    just when i though i've heard everthing....the quality of servicing is getting so crappy you can't make this sh*t up even if you want to....

    frustrating.
     
  5. Evolved

    Evolved F1 Veteran
    Rossa Subscribed

    Nov 5, 2003
    8,206
    Pittsburgh, PA
    You get what you pay for.

    When you buy the sony get the service from best buy or whereever. I had my sony serviced by curcuit city. After three days of hoop jumping I shipped it out and it was back in three days good as new.

    This laptop is three years old R505 and I can't see geting rid of it but Visual studio EA is getting sluggish so maybe a new one would be nice.

    With internet access. Spend the extra to get a local ISP. It'll be 15 dollars more a month but the service will be worth it.

    My work dsl is an outlandish 270 dollars a month BUT they acctually give a **** and their office is literally 5 blocks from mine. I have a problem they fix it, NOW. I have the owners cell phone number handy. Well worth the extra 1500 a year over verizon.
     
  6. LetsJet

    LetsJet F1 Veteran
    Owner

    May 24, 2004
    9,237
    DC/LA/Paris/Haleiwa
    Full Name:
    Mr.
    Sony service used to be terrible and very expensive out of warrantee. Now at least you can purchase an extended at home warrantee if you would like. I'm typing this on a Sony TR3a now and am looking between the Sony S690 or the Dell Xps laptops to use at the house. I only purchased the TR3a to travel with and the others are desktop replacers.

    I think you should take a deep breath and realize that you should get this computer back before you know it (hopefully).

    Good luck........
     
  7. C. Losito

    C. Losito Formula Junior

    Dec 12, 2003
    908
    Metro St. Louis
    Full Name:
    Chris Losito
  8. SRT Mike

    SRT Mike Two Time F1 World Champ

    Oct 31, 2003
    23,199
    Taxachusetts
    Full Name:
    Raymond Luxury Yacht
    sony service has never been great. I have a Vaio that I've never had a problem with, but I had MAJOR problems with a MicroMV camcorder. I paid $1200 for the thing, they blamed EVERYTHING except their product. I even got a new computer to get the damn thing going. Finally, ONE DAY after the labor warranty expired, they said "Yep, its probably defective, you'll need to send it in. Parts are covered, labor isn't". I was dumbfounded. I figured parts were the expensive part. But no, they tell me they need to replace the inner guts of the camcorder. Parts $90. Labor $420. Are you KIDDING me? How do I just KNOW if labor was covered but not parts, they would flip the costly part over to the parts.

    I like alot of Sony stuff, but I've been burned enough to know to stay away. Also avoid HP/Compaq. If its important that your laptop be there when you need it and if it breaks, you get the good treatment, go with IBM. My brother and I used to run IT departments for seperate companies. I used every brand of laptop under the sun, save IBM. I can't say we had great luck with any of them. They all seeemed to have about equal problems, although Dell (used to) have great support. My brother used lots of brands too, and settled on IBM. They would overnight you a replacement laptop *anywhere* in the world. Then you sent the old one back.

    If the service side is important, go IBM. they cost a little more, but you can get discounts and with those, they are only a bit higher than the rest.
     
  9. jptyke

    jptyke Formula 3

    Sep 28, 2004
    1,411
    Manhattan, NY
    Full Name:
    Master P.
    Bummer dude,

    Sorry to hear I'm typing on the same laptop as the one you have that just died. You and I sound alike, this is my 4th viao.

    Did you buy it on Amex? Can't they help you?
     
  10. Doody

    Doody F1 Veteran

    Nov 16, 2001
    6,099
    MA USA
    Full Name:
    Mr. Doody
    i did buy on amex. what could they do? i needed a replacement computer shipped overnight - do they do something like that?

    doody.
     
  11. stephens

    stephens F1 Rookie
    Lifetime Rossa

    Feb 13, 2004
    4,483
    Australia
    Full Name:
    Stephen S
    The real issue here is the new supply chain. No one wants to pay for service, everyone wants cheaper prices, web deals, no middle men. There is no money in selling these products anymore, so correspondingly there is no service. Buy your laptop with an onsite service agreement from a manufacturer that understands your business computing needs, rather than a consumer electronics company next time.
    All of our computer equipment is purchased with next business day onsite extended warranties. If it breaks, they will come to you and fix/replace it. Unfortunately this doesn't help you with this particular problem, unless Sony offer it as an option, which you could now purchase. Most computer vendors will allow you to buy extendedwarranties after the fact as long as the unit is still under warranty.
     
  12. Uberpower

    Uberpower Formula Junior

    Feb 6, 2004
    902
    Sigma Draconis IV
    Hey Doody-

    I am typing this post on a Dell Latitude D600. This is idiot proof for people like me. I have dropped this thing from five feet, more than once and have not suffered anything more than a small crack in the casing.

    Additionally the HDD went out, but I'd backed everything up on a USB Pen, called Dell asked what the part number was. Used BUY IT NOW on ebay, had it overnighted and installed it myself and installed all of the software again AND put everything back on the HDD from the USB Pen.

    Due to Dell's supply chain, they use stuff from everyone- for example the Latitude uses Fujitsu HDDs AND Hitachi HDDs, different vendors for everything due to their JIT setup.

    You know why I use Dell? Because their supply chain is the best. Wanna know why Dell's supply chain is the best? Because I helped build it. ;)

    Nick
     
  13. enjoythemusic

    enjoythemusic F1 World Champ

    Apr 20, 2002
    10,675
    Worldwide
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    Steven
    Doody,

    Since i am DEEPLY within the consumer electronics industry i will hold my comments concerning Sony (though they echo yours).

    Dude, get a Dell. They come HERE to fix it and/or WILL send me any part/board i desire. On Dell #4 and ALL of them STILL work. Sure there were some glitches over the past 6 to 7 years, but the WORST case was a three day downtime. Usually the guy shows up at my door the NEXT DAY and fixes the machine IF/WHEN there is a problem.
     
  14. stephens

    stephens F1 Rookie
    Lifetime Rossa

    Feb 13, 2004
    4,483
    Australia
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    Stephen S
    Dell's QC on notebooks is shocking. Great supply chain model, great prices, average service but below average quality IMO.
     
  15. wax

    wax Four Time F1 World Champ
    Advising Moderator

    Jul 20, 2003
    42,350
    SFPD
    Full Name:
    Dirty Harry
    "Five Easy Pieces" isn't working with the waitress at the Sony Diner. So, by all means, call AmEx - hopefully, you won't get someone in Dallas or somesuch, saying "Howdy Doody" *ducks* (sorry, couldn't resist) - but you'll find out, AmEx does take care of AmEx Cardolders.
     
  16. Korr

    Korr F1 World Champ
    Silver Subscribed

    Dec 7, 2003
    14,614
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    C9H8O4
  17. Korr

    Korr F1 World Champ
    Silver Subscribed

    Dec 7, 2003
    14,614
    Full Name:
    C9H8O4
    The quality on them is ok, not great. Calling them up and having them come out to fix it the next day is a nice thing that makes up for a lot of product shortfalls.

    Like any laptop, the warranty is the thing they soak you on if you want one that's worth a darn.
     

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