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Out $500 and very disappointed in SwimSonny  

post #1 of 39
Thread Starter 

Let me start by saying I am a new member and new to quality headphones.  I came to Head-Fi for research and advice on my first pair of quality headphones.  Everyone for the most part has been very, very friendly and helpful.


Before joining Head-Fi I bought a pair of Beats Pros from Best Buy.  From my limited headphone experience I was very impressed with the sound of them especially the bass.  The fit I felt was too tight though and uncomfortable.  I went online to research my buy and came across many, many threads on Head-Fi with several people saying Beats is basically a fashion statement and that there are much better options for the same price or cheaper.  Not being one that conforms to the wills of fashion I returned the Beats the next day.


After much research and feedback from many helpful members I decided to go with a pair of Denon 2000's.  That is when I came across this for sale thread http://www.head-fi.org/t/649291/modded-denon-d2000-great-condition-sale-or-trade by SwimSonny


I had been looking at Lawton mods so I really liked the idea if the upgraded 2k's.


I pm'ed SwimSonny and he suggested we speak over skype which I felt to be a good idea.

He has nearly 4,000 posts on Head-Fi so I never felt worried about him as a seller.  We talked about his headphones and my needs.  We settled on a price.  And I paid via Paypay as a Gift as he requested (My first mistake).  In addition, because this was my first big purchase and because I had never heard Denons before I wanted to be certain that if I was not satisfied I could return them for a refund.  He agreed that he would refund minus shipping if I was not satisfied.


All was well, until I received my Denons.  My first reaction was sheer excitement when they arrived... I wanted them to be everything I had hoped they would be.  At first listen I wanted them to sound good, but after a few minutes I thought these sounded kinda dampened.  I decided to take my time and listen further to see if quality improved.  At this time the only thing I had to compare these to were some Me Electronics SP-51's which sounded much better then the 2k's.  I let several people listen without saying anything.  All agreed the IEM's sounded better.  In addition to the sound the headphone muffs smelled of smoke.  I could smell them while listening and it was def another turn off.


I started to voice my concerns to SwimSonny.  He blamed me.  Not having anyone in my area that I know of who is familiar with Denons I decided to ship my Denons off to Mark Lawton, the mod master himself, for analysis.  Either way, I told SwimSonny that I was not satisfied with this unit....  Either the unit was defected in which case I would want a refund OR I simply was not satisfied with the sound of Denons.  Either way I was not happy with my purchase and requested a refund as promised.


He said he would not offer a refund.  I reminded him of his word...



[Mod Edit: Names removed.]
<<< If you really don't like I will refund minus shipping
He never responded...  
I replied, giving him other opportunities on Skype and Head-Fi to be a man of his word and do the right thing...  no response
Where I come from a Man's Character means a lot and a Man's word can be all he has.  It saddens me that there are people like this that think it is ok to say one thing and do another.
As I mentioned, I sent the headphones to Mark Lawton for analysis.  Mark said the unit was defective and he didn't think the new cable that SwimSonny installed was secure either and he wouldn't even give me anything for them... He said all he might would be interested in was the screws.
Here are some of Mark's notes:
No not optimal mod methodology or materials.

We can’t remove any of the excess damping that is contributing to dull sound.

Removing the cotton material will help a lot but we can’t restore them to what we would do.

The cable work is quite poor really, and the wire is very flimsy and not secured with real strain relief.


If you want a great sounding denon (that will last for you), I can’t recommend this unit. I don’t think the cable is secure either.

You are much better off with a new unit.




Blaming me for being a rookie is plausible but I don't think arguing with Mark Lawton's analysis is.  I spent nearly $100 for shipping and analysis to confirm this simply because I didn't want to blame SwimSonny.  But now it is obvious.



I purchased a set of modded Denon 2000's from SwimSonny

SwimSonny promised me a refund if I was not satisfied.

SwimSonny then went back on his word and denied me a refund.

Unit was proven defective by the expert Mark Lawton himself.



I learned what not to do when making a paypal payment...  NEVER pay via Paypal gift.  That was MY mistake and should have been my first red flag.  At least this way I could have disputed the sell.  

Don't trust SwimSonny.  His word isn't worth a thing.

post #2 of 39

I'm sorry to hear that you had a bad experience, but don't let that ruin head-fi for you. I've only been here a few months, but all my transactions have gone flawlessly. There are some really kind and cool people here. Also, have you left feedback? That's what it's there for. 

post #3 of 39

put a negative feedback on his feedback page ;)

post #4 of 39
Thread Starter 

Thanks guys, I didn't even see that before.



post #5 of 39

I've been following this since the beginning in PM's. And it still sickens me...

post #6 of 39

geeez...thats alot of money sunk...

so whats next? 

are u still hoping to return it..?


or do some DIY yourself n make lemonade...

D2000 is still a fantastic can in its core.





the rule i set for myself regarding modded cans ( involving the cups...) 

is to listen to it before i put my money down...

i hate being surprised ( all our soundtastes n descriptions r different ) 

Having set this rule, it ruled out me buying modded cans...almost arrrghhhh.


post #7 of 39
Thread Starter 

I would no doubt still like to return it, but what can you do when they deny refund?


Lesson Learned...

post #8 of 39
Wow.. I actually was a fan of SwimSonny as a reviewer here on Head-Fi. And have pm'd several times seeking advice. This is a severe smudge on my opinion of him (not that anyone cares what I think lol). I was actually in the process of looking him up for some advice.. then found this thread. Shame.. but thanks for sharing your experience Elite..! Hope down the road you aren't turned away from Head-Fi and continue enjoying this hobby :)
post #9 of 39

I havent played with Dynamat yet...can it be sandpapered out..?

undo all the DIYstuff... redo the cable...buy new cups...

hmmm...and fumigate/ozonate the drivers for smoke-stench. 


post #10 of 39
Originally Posted by Eliteoomph View Post


Certainly sorry to hear that. Really a crappy situation. any chance you could post pictures, or maybe start a thread in DIY with pictures? We would definitely be willing to help walk you through it. 


You can also PM directly if you'd like. I've done a lot of modding on these headphones myself. 

Edited by elwappo99 - 3/16/13 at 1:28pm
post #11 of 39

Sorry to hear your troubles. I hope some right will come out of this thread.

post #12 of 39

That really stinks. Perhaps Sonny could be messaged with this thread and we could get his side of the story?

post #13 of 39
If he's not answering how do we know what happen? I hate to point a finger but a silent person seems guilty....:/ damn. And I enjoyed his reviews thus far...
post #14 of 39
Mar 21, 2013 at 2:46 pm



Not sure if you've seen this thread. But, it does warrant a response.. if only to clear up any misunderstandings..

Mar 21, 2013 at 3:34 pm

I did not want to get in a argument with the guy. If his allegations were true i would probably be banned for a start. Secondly it was the best Denon me and many others had ever heard. Thirdly the cable is the highly regarded toxic cables one, hardly low quality. Then he said smells of smoke and considering i have never smoked a cigarette in my life and live in a smoke free house thats quite amazing they smell of smoke. At the end of the day he did not just ask for a refund but said i sold him a faulty unit that did not read true. It seemed like he never wanted to keep them and just wanted to try and thats what rung alarm bells. my dad who actually bought modded and sold them and just used my account as he cant have one as jude things i am messing around with two accounts as same IP address so he used mine to sell it. My dad refused to refund and thats end of story. You can seem i am a keen poster and a honest seller trader from my past feed back and i would not do this to jeopardise my position here.


Hope you understand.


Thanks for the message!



post #15 of 39

I still enjoy his reviews but.. still..

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