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Ray Samuel Audio Does Not Warranty Finish and Offers No Replacement Parts on 1 Year Old DarkStar...  

post #1 of 161
Thread Starter 

 

Hello All.

 

Thought I would share my experience-

Warning, its long and boring. 

 

I recently purchased a 1 year old DarkStar amplifier from a fellow Head-fi'er for $2750.00.

The pictures the seller posted showed splotchy discoloration and purpling of the knobs, but I knew the unit was under warranty, or worse case I would purchase new ones.  After receiving the amp, I noticed the same issues on the knobs in areas not touched by fingers (under the trim ring of the volume knob).  Bottom line, bad anodizing.  Not a big deal right?

 

On Monday 03-04-2013, I sent Ray of RSA an email with a picture of the amp.

My email to him-

 

quote " Hello Ray, how are you sir?
I have purchased a 10-12 month old DarkStar.  The only issue with the amp is the discoloration (purple hue) of the knobs.  Normally, the condition indicates insufficient of black dye absorption.  Is this something you will warranty?  Picture attached to email.  Can I send you the parts only to swap or do you need the amp?  Thank you. " end quote.

 

His reply-

quote "  That is normal with all of them. Cheers. " end quote.

 

Im thinking to myself- Really?  I have owned a ton of black anodized equipment over the last 30 years, and have only seen a few pieces with the purple anodized look (15-20 year old equipment), but not fading with the finish coming off.   

 
My reply-
quote " Hello Ray.  Well if that is the case, please send me a picture or a link to one, anywhere, even from the Internet that has the same issue.  There are a ton of pictures out there, yet I could not find one with purplish looking knobs.  Maybe its me, but I dont think they should look this way.  I could understand if the unit was old, and was subjected to lots of heat (like Levinson and Krell heat sinks).  Worse case, how much to purchase them from you?  Thank you," end quote.
 
His reply-

quote " The cost of DarkStar chassis is $1200.00 complete. we do not sell parts. Cheers." end quote.

 

Hmm ok, RSA does not sell parts, but he will sell me a complete chassis for 1200.00?  Wow, that is insulting.

 

My reply-

quote " Good afternoon Ray.  Attached to the email, a straight angle pic of the amplifier.  Honestly, does the amp look like it should?  Purple faded knobs on a lightly used 1 year old hi end amp that sells for $3500.00?  How can that be "normal"? 
I am disappointed and surprised.  Not because you wont warranty, exchange or sell replacement knobs, but because you are not standing behind your product.  A statement product at that.  Im asking you please, reconsider doing something, anything to make the amp look like it should.  Thank you so much for your time, I know you are busy. " end quote.

 

I received no reply and he has not replied to several emails over the last 4 days.  I sent an email this morning asking if posting my experience was ok.  No reply. 

 

I went ahead and shipped the knobs to a reputable company we use to machine us custom aluminum shift knobs, small parts and offers anodizing.  So, I know a little something about small parts cost and cost to anodize.  Maybe thats why Im having such a hard time understanding Ray's unwillingness to warranty, replace, or sell me new knobs.  Now IF the amp was older, abused, damaged, or a lower line product... okay.    

 

From RSA's website today-

Warranty

THE EMMELINE PRODUCTS are warranted for THREE YEARS from the date of purchase. The warranty is transferable to a second and third owners with no questions asked.

 

So, what is the problem?  The unit is under warranty.  I am the second owner.  The knobs are inexpensive.  Aluminum anodized parts are easily re-finished. 

 

I dont get it.  Am I missing something?  Someone give me a clue please!  smile.gif

 

   

 

 


Edited by CorvetteGarage - 3/10/13 at 7:27pm
post #2 of 161
Thread Starter 
darkstar2.JPG 4,468k .JPG file

 

Picture of amp.

post #3 of 161

blink.gif

 

definitely shouldn't look like that. especially since it looks like a huge part of the darkstar's price is the casework. should be absolutely flawless and shouldn't show discolorations like that for many years to come.


Edited by Dubstep Girl - 3/8/13 at 4:18pm
post #4 of 161

I'm with you. The tone of and brevity of those responses are unacceptable... Basically they are telling you to go screw yourself. You would think an upscale company like that would be more responsive. Do you think the response would have been better had you been the original purchaser? They clearly are annoyed by you... tongue.gif

post #5 of 161
Thread Starter 

Bottom line, warranty is 3 years and transfers to first, second and third owners.  

 

Dont know why they would be annoyed.  I wasnt asking for much. 


Edited by CorvetteGarage - 3/9/13 at 8:52am
post #6 of 161

If this is normal, Ray should post this as a feature on his web site that the knobs on his $3K amps may look like ass in a year and will not be covered by a warranty. bigsmile_face.gif
 

post #7 of 161

I feel your pain.  I bought a used amp that was supposedly "mint", but when I received it, there were some dings on the knobs.  It's used, so normally I wouldn't care, but I hate how people indiscriminately throw the word "mint" around.  Anyway, when I inquired about buying new knobs, I was quoted a price of $85 each!  eek.gif  The knobs probably cost $5 or less.


Edited by hodgjy - 3/8/13 at 5:24pm
post #8 of 161

Well, it' not much of a warranty, is it. The cavalier and unprofessional responses don't help.

 

Forewarned is forearmed, Thank you for posting this.

 

KP

post #9 of 161
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dubstep Girl View Post

blink.gif

 

definitely shouldn't look like that. especially since it looks like a huge part of the darkstar's price is the casework. should be absolutely flawless and shouldn't show discolorations like that for many years to come.

Good point, I just looked at the site and there are about 20 pics all of the outside, not one of the inside. bling bling

 

KP

post #10 of 161

The sad thing is that more and more companies appear to not care about customer service. Once I come across great customer service, I like to praise them and the ones that don't offer the service, I stop giving them my business.Here is a list of of companies that go the extra mile. KLIPSCH, The late Lee Weiland of LOCUS DESIGN, RED WINE AUDIO, APPLE, I have also had good experiences with HIFIMAN. Of course your milage may vary.

post #11 of 161

Almost forgot OPPO.

post #12 of 161

Soooo..........your Darkstar wasn't dark enough?wink.gif

post #13 of 161

Certainly a company I won't buy from!

Had only good experiences with Audeze,Audio GD and Hifiman and it helps to know which companies to avoid!mad.gif
 

post #14 of 161

Schiit has phenomenal customer service as well.  If this thread is true (and I believe it is), I will not buy from RSA ever.

post #15 of 161

So Ray gives a Schiit about his customer's and his reputation, er, OR not.

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