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Stax SR-009 Channel Imbalance Trouble / Driver Problem? - Page 26

post #376 of 832
Quote:
Originally Posted by marcoarment View Post
 

Got the KGSSHV. It's nice-looking, great-sounding, and massive. But the channel imbalance remains — I've now ruled out all other components, so it's definitely a problem with the headphones.

 

The 009s were in their box for the last few days, and sure enough, they were pretty well balanced when I first started playing them today on the KG. But within the first 15 minutes, it started gradually drifting off balance, and now it's right back to a very strong leftward imbalance. (I don't have proper equipment to measure the imbalance accurately, but it sounds like the music is coming from about 60 degrees left of center.)

 

PriceJapan advised me:

 

"Similar cases (imbalance issues ) happened so many times as your case, but Stax tends not find problems from them. Most of customers wasted round shipping cost and their previous time (2 months on average) for sending their Stax headphone to Japan."

 

But I'm out of options. I'll eat the shipping cost, but it will be pretty disappointing customer service if Stax Japan can't repair or exchange a week-old, defective flagship headphone in a reasonable amount of time.

PJ's forecast is probably going to be accurate, though I understand your frustration. And regarding Stax customer service, try to see it from their perspective - if they check your 009 and find no problem with it what are they supposed to repair or exchange? I would expect that if there is a problem that they will repair or exchange the 009 (apart from the reality that you are presently experiencing an imbalance that may or may not require repair).

post #377 of 832
Quote:
Originally Posted by paradoxper View Post
 

I've wondered why PJ or even Yama's or whoever else don't offer to exchange the pair. Say after a trip or two for 'repair' and the problem persists...

why not switch 'em out and keep the customer happy.

 

I'm sure there are reasons, but going that extra mile for the customer could go a long way.

 

I don't expect them to hand out exchanges left and right, but I'll tell you one thing: if I ship them back, then get back the same pair and it still exhibits this problem — and especially if I have to send them back a second time — they will have lost this customer with extreme prejudice.

 

I don't expect them to give a damn about me specifically, but this highly specialized industry lives and dies by a relatively small community. My serial number is just north of 2600 for a headphone that's been out for 3 years. In a market this small, making too many enemies of your customers is really not a good business idea.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by georgep View Post
 

PJ's forecast is probably going to be accurate, though I understand your frustration. And regarding Stax customer service, try to see it from their perspective - if they check your 009 and find no problem with it what are they supposed to repair or exchange? I would expect that if there is a problem that they will repair or exchange the 009 (apart from the reality that you are presently experiencing an imbalance that may or may not require repair).

 

At this point, I've resolved myself to having to send them back and be without them for a few weeks or months. But from what I've read here so far, it sounds like they almost always come back fixed, even if Stax claims that no repairs were made, and nobody's chimed in to say that the problem ever recurred once it was fixed.

 

All I want is for the headphones I've dreamed about owning for a long time, and finally do own, to work for more than 4 days. However they get to that point, I don't care. If they arrive back from Stax in a reasonable amount of time and work properly, I'll be happy regardless of what they say they did or didn't do.

 

But if they come back still broken, we'll have a problem.

post #378 of 832
These are fair points marcoarment, I'd still take my part of responsibility in going through grey market. Ultimately, the shipping costs occuring are just the result of your gamble. Can't win every time, and stax can only do so much here...
post #379 of 832
Quote:
Originally Posted by paradoxper View Post
 

I've wondered why PJ or even Yama's or whoever else don't offer to exchange the pair. Say after a trip or two for 'repair' and the problem persists...

why not switch 'em out and keep the customer happy.

 

I'm sure there are reasons, but going that extra mile for the customer could go a long way.

 

In the case of PJ the service they are offering is to play middle man for access to the Japanese market.  They don't stock any of these products, they just go and order whatever you're interested in direct then ship it to you.  Their mark up is pretty nominal. The price break for us is all about the yen.  

 

With that business model they are not in a position to start offering exchanges without having to significantly increase prices to cover cost.

 

Have we seen any 009's needing to go back a second time?  I have to agree, I'd like to think that they shouldn't have to go a first time, but I hadn't heard of the cases where they failed again after being returned.

 

My pair have been absolutely perfect after making the trip back for "no repair".  

post #380 of 832
Quote:
Originally Posted by shipsupt View Post

 

[snip!]

Have we seen any 009's needing to go back a second time?  I have to agree, I'd like to think that they shouldn't have to go a first time, but I hadn't heard of the cases where they failed again after being returned.

[snip!]

 

Yes for a friend of mine (I went to the shops with him to help him buy his SR-009)  'cos the first time Stax didn't find any issues but the problem persisted. 2nd time we told Stax on how to replicate the channel imbalance issue and they replaced the driver but it took much longer on 2nd round. The replication was easy, let it run for more than 20 mins.

 

1st return was easy, as my friend was in Tokyo. 2nd return was harder as he had moved back to the states and it wasn't just the shipment was the problem, proof to customs on both sides that the product was bought in Japan, tax fully paid, etc. Extra forms were needed to be filled in, etc.

 

All this was between Jan '13 -> Jul/Aug '13 BTW (and this thread started in '11, so channel imbalance compliant isn't exactly a "new" issue).

 

Anyway, the point is that if Stax does their checks right the first round, then it'll only have to go back once. If they don't, then going back a 2nd time is not unheard of.

post #381 of 832
All this is very smoke and mirrors. I can see Stax don't want to admit they have / had a production issue as that would damage the brand.

I bought a new UK sourced pair via Synergy the official UK distributors. I rang them direct and was told they came across 'some' imbalance issues with the 009s in 2011/12, also the 507s earlier when they were first released. BUT said it was now resolved, and they have had NO further problems at all with both models.

I get 2 years warranty with my 009s as the EU ruling is 2 years on electronic products. Synergy also said they would honour 3 years, though that is verbal. I have nothing in writing.

So, my questions are

1. How many have failed in the total sold? Do we know?

2. Has the problem always been resolved / honoured by Stax with a new pair or new drivers?

3. Is there a bigger problem with Price Japan and faulty units? I find it odd how many are from PJ and going wrong.
Is it they get hold of the rejects (returned) units and sell them on as new?!!

4. What happens if a pair fails outside of the warranty? If nobody has had issues much beyond 2 months of ownership we may all be ok?
If the fault can appear later, that is going to be a major issue. It would be nice to know Stax would honour warranty for an obvious manufacturing problem beyond the 2 year period. It is not realistic to sell the worlds most expensive headphone that later becomes a paper weight!

Bit of a mess all this.....
post #382 of 832
Quote:
Originally Posted by AnakChan View Post

 

Yes for a friend of mine (I went to the shops with him to help him buy his SR-009)  'cos the first time Stax didn't find any issues but the problem persisted. 2nd time we told Stax on how to replicate the channel imbalance issue and they replaced the driver but it took much longer on 2nd round. The replication was easy, let it run for more than 20 mins.

 

1st return was easy, as my friend was in Tokyo. 2nd return was harder as he had moved back to the states and it wasn't just the shipment was the problem, proof to customs on both sides that the product was bought in Japan, tax fully paid, etc. Extra forms were needed to be filled in, etc.

 

All this was between Jan '13 -> Jul/Aug '13 BTW (and this thread started in '11, so channel imbalance compliant isn't exactly a "new" issue).

 

Anyway, the point is that if Stax does their checks right the first round, then it'll only have to go back once. If they don't, then going back a 2nd time is not unheard of.

 



Yes, hopefully Stax does play them for a sufficient time before making any conclusions. Though the one consolation in this whole imbalance issue I suppose is that if you are one of the unlucky ones and there is any imbalance at all, it shows up early and tends not to return.
post #383 of 832
Quote:
Originally Posted by georgep View Post
 
Yes, hopefully Stax does play them for a sufficient time before making any conclusions. Though the one consolation in this whole imbalance issue I suppose is that if you are one of the unlucky ones and there is any imbalance at all, it shows up early and tends not to return.

 

Yes so far from what I've heard, they do appear pretty early on. I helped someone else buy an SR-009 and tested it for about 1-2 weeks before shipping it to him overseas. I don't think he's tested it since (that was June last year) he's waiting for the BHSE. I'm hoping that the 1-2 week test I did was sufficient. There were no problems during that test.

 

To give @astrostar59 a partial non holistic answer to his question, I got my SR-009 in Feb '12. Between then & mid '13, I've helped 4x other friends pick up the SR-009s and 1 had issue. I have no idea how many other SR-009s were sold during that period nor how many others had problems. But I think it's quite low. And at least for my friend who did have the channel imbalance issue fixed, I think he's spent more time enjoying it now than dwelling on the issue he faced.

post #384 of 832

Can we gleam that there's 2600-ish 009's and maybe a dozen of those with imbalances?

post #385 of 832
Quote:
Originally Posted by AnakChan View Post

Yes so far from what I've heard, they do appear pretty early on. I helped someone else buy an SR-009 and tested it for about 1-2 weeks before shipping it to him overseas. I don't think he's tested it since (that was June last year) he's waiting for the BHSE. I'm hoping that the 1-2 week test I did was sufficient. There were no problems during that test.

... The warranty period will end soon. I might be the first to have to pay for an imbalance repair. (#, #)
post #386 of 832
Quote:
Originally Posted by Audio Jester View Post


... The warranty period will end soon. I might be the first to have to pay for an imbalance repair. (#, #)

 

I should have pushed you to pick up some SRM during that time at least so that you could bed it in for the past 12 months!

post #387 of 832
Quote:
Originally Posted by AnakChan View Post

I should have pushed you to pick up some SRM during that time at least so that you could bed it in for the past 12 months!
yeah... I should have, but I acted on the information I was given. Sadly I could not find someone locally who had a stax amp so I am stuck. At least you tested them! wink.gif
post #388 of 832
Quote:
Originally Posted by Audio Jester View Post



... The warranty period will end soon. I might be the first to have to pay for an imbalance repair. (#, #)

 



Sorry, I don't follow. You seem to be suggesting you have an imbalance issue, but also seem to be saying (in a following post) that you have never been able to listen to your 009s?
post #389 of 832
Quote:
Originally Posted by georgep View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Audio Jester View Post



... The warranty period will end soon. I might be the first to have to pay for an imbalance repair. (#, #)

 



Sorry, I don't follow. You seem to be suggesting you have an imbalance issue, but also seem to be saying (in a following post) that you have never been able to listen to your 009s?
There is a theory that the imbalance may be induced by transportation via air (pressure/temperature changes?). If that is correct then although my pair were tested in Japan I have not been able to test them since they have arrived as I have been waiting for my amp.
post #390 of 832
Quote:
Originally Posted by Audio Jester View Post


There is a theory that the imbalance may be induced by transportation via air (pressure/temperature changes?). If that is correct then although my pair were tested in Japan I have not been able to test them since they have arrived as I have been waiting for my amp.

I see, so no imbalance, but you haven't used them since you received them so you don't know if everything if working properly.

 

According to some people, Spritzer included, it is due to transportation/pressure/temperature changes, which seems to occur in limited circumstances and goes away after a period. I personally have no clue and am just happy mine have always worked perfectly.

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