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AV32R Dual Processor: Help needed from original TMA employees

Discussion in 'TAG McLaren Audio Owners' Forum' started by audionutter, Mar 5, 2005.

  1. audionutter

    audionutter
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    Hello all, need some advice and info, especially from the original TMA crew (roversd, stevesky, udo Z, taxhamster, john M, etc) about the Dual Processor. As many of you no doubt know, there was a recent Ebay auction for an "AV32R bp-192 THX Ultra2 Dual Processor 7.1" that was described as purchased new as a Dual Processor about 2 years ago. The pic used was a file pic from TAG and it wasn't until after I had won the auction that the seller emailed me the actual pics (despite requesting for them when the auction started)

    I have my suspicions that the seller has not been honest in his description and auction. According to his auction info, it is a new, NOT upgraded AV32R that he purchased 2 years ago and it comes with all the stuff you would expect a new DP to have. The inconsistencies I have picked up so far include:

    1. The picture of the actual unit he has shows a front faceplate with F3 on it instead of Avantgarde and of course, no Dual Sharc logo. Very suspect cos none of the "new" DP should have a F3 faceplate so at best this is an upgraded unit and at worst it is a SP which he is trying to pass off as DP. Either way, not what he initially offered for sale.

    2. The top lid suggest early SP instead of current DP due to shape and size/position of vents.

    3. The serial number is AVP-000150. This I find disconcerting. Not sure if AVP is for prototypes or regular products. If it is for regular products then this must be a very early 1999 model. If prototype then could it be a DP prototype? Maybe the original TAg guys can help me out here? :lease: Much obliged if you can :thumbsup:

    4. The seller claims he got it from a Tag factory clearout sale 2 years ago. I thought Tag never sold off any DP in their factory sale, only SP. Comments anyone?

    5. I've uploaded the pics the seller sent me and is the back panel consistent with a "new" or upgraded DP?

    6. The display on the unit was changed only last year, so this again raises my suspicion that it is an older SP or upgarded DP unit instead of a "purchased new" DP only two years ago. Cos the display should not need replacing so soon if it is a new unit.

    I've also emailed helpdesk about this but not sure when and if they will reply. Since we have so many Tag experts here (certainly more than in IAG!) I hope some of them may be able to recollect and confirm/refute what the above info I got form the seller. Thanks!

    P/S By the way, are some of the above reasons why some of you guys on here did not continue bidding on the auction? To be honest, if he had been upfront with all the info I know now, i wouldn't have bid either :(
     

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  2. Miron

    Miron
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    everyone here saw that auction, i guess...

    whatever the reality is, this guy does not deserve anything else but negative feedback and to pay ebay fees without getting any money for his unit since he deliberately stated wrong and misleading infos.
    on the other hand if everything is fine with the unit you might end up with the bargain.
    your call!

    p.s. you answered most of your questions already, you obviously know the matter well enough (apart from top lid which is from DP model)
     
  3. Stevesky

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    The things that ring alarm bells about this unit are:

    1. incorrect face plate. That is a very early face plate, probably 1999/2000 era. The limited icons by the F3 and the format logos are the clue here.

    2. Serial number - that is very early (as in 1999ish). The AVP start is ok and is not prototype.

    The back panel looks like a newer unit with the bypass support, the lid looks ok as well as that has the larger air vented "AVAV".

    Also with the auto dimming feature the burning of the display was resolved and should last for many many years under normal use.

    Ask him the installed version of software in the unit. If its v4.xx then it's some form of upgraded DP that used to be an SP. If its v3.xx or v2.xx then it's an SP.

    Hope that helps and good luck!
     
  4. JohnMulcahy

    JohnMulcahy
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    AVP-000150 was a unit upgraded to DP, last record I have of it being in R&D was March 2003 to sort out some teething problems after the upgrade, it had a clean bill of health afterwards. Would have had a new chassis and new lid as part of the upgrade. It went to The Netherlands.
     
  5. audionutter

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    Thanks very much for the answers so far, Steve and John! :smashin:

    So AVP-000150 started life as an early 1999 SP which was then upgraded to DP status? Was AVP-000150 ever sold at all or did it live it's life entirely within Tag's various departments as a demo/R&D unit? If it is as Tag's own unit, why was it upgraded to DP?

    John, when you say it had a new chassis and lid fitted, does it mean that the internal boards have been completely replaced with the "current spec" DP boards and therefore the only original bit of AVP-000150 left is the F3 faceplate? Was it actually sold to Netherlands or was it just loaned out to them?

    Sorry for asking such details which you may not remember cos it was so long ago, but the info I have from the seller says he bought it direct from TAG in Huntingdon/Cambridge during the Tag clearout sale in 2003 and that it never left Cambridgeshire (cos the seller lives locally).

    Incidentally, the seller's payment details (name, address) is completely different to that registered with Ebay (same username and email but different real name and address).
     
  6. UrbanT

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    Have you confronted the seller with your findings yet?

    If you intend to buy, I would reneg the price, as theres a big difference in a 2 year old, and 6 year old unit, as well as being upgraded.

    If you do decide to buy, and considering the address question, and the guys lack of feedback, I would only collect.
     
  7. OnTheFly

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    Personally I would walk away. You will never be completely happy with your purchase regardless of the price because what you bid for is not what you may buy.

    I also requested actual pictures but never received them.

    I said:

    "Was this unit a DP from new or was it upgraded from a lesser AV32R? How old is it? I am guessing that your photo is not the actual unit?"

    He replied:
    Yes this unit was a DP from new. It has had a new display because the old display was dull. I can send you photos of the unit direct just supply me with your email address.

    audionutter
    For the price you have to pay I'm sure you would get a more genuine item. Walk away.........
     
  8. JohnMulcahy

    JohnMulcahy
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    It was a customer unit, not an R&D unit. The board may have been replaced to perform the upgrade, many were, but don't know whether that was the case for that particular unit. It is possible that the customer was at some later point given a replacement unit and #150 ended up as a TMA unit, I'll see if I can find any more info.
     
  9. AMCross

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    Quote

    "P/S By the way, are some of the above reasons why some of you guys on here did not continue bidding on the auction? To be honest, if he had been upfront with all the info I know now, i wouldn't have bid either "

    I bottled out because i saw these differences and then i had an email offering me the unit as a second chance offer.

    Steve Jones is well aware of my problems with the unit he was beating me in the bidding process and i left @ £1850 and made him aware my findings but audionutter you came in rather late

    I did send the seller a question hoping he would use them in the listing but of course my emails were ignored

    I am NOT saying there is something wrong but when a seller doesn't come forward with answers to genuine questions i get worried
     
  10. AMCross

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    Quote

    "The back panel looks like a newer unit with the bypass support, the lid looks ok as well as that has the larger air vented "AVAV".

    My single AV32R BP192 has a AVAVA top lid is this the older lid ?
     
  11. Joelc

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    Not that I have anything to add here re: vintage of the unit.

    I do however have to add how I miss the old days of TMA -- look at this, over the weekend, on their own time, nothing to benefit other that helping an enthusiast John and Steve are responding with the exact information thet is needed.

    I am dreaming of getting TMA Back!!!

    Joel
     
  12. edward

    edward
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    Yup, the old TMA days with an active forum of authenticated users was great. A lot of useful info exchanged then and a lot less to grumble about. There was also the comfort of knowiing you had the best processor in the market and it was unlikely to be overtaken by anything, as long as we coukd afford the upgrades.

    Cherish your dream, Joel. I doubt that anyone could create a set-up like that again - well, none that come immediately to mind. I wonder if there is someone out there with the resources and disposition to get the old team back together for another upgrade. If there was, what would that upgrade consist of?

    Mmm... wandering off topic here.
     
  13. Teejoo

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    Sorry guys for not checking in earlier, and John you can stop searching :D
    The unit is an upgraded SP. One of the early SP ones as you can see on the serial. It was upgraded to DP as one of the Beta testers (febr 2003), and as John already mentions there have been some problems with the unit. Some caused as a risk of being first with Beta test (**** happens), the latest were not related.
    The unit returned to Tag (jan 2004) and replaced by a new one.

    So, the seller is simply not telling the truth.
    I don't know about the main board anymore, but I do know the DP board was the latest (at least it was in jan 2004) because I put it in there. It was my unit.
     
  14. audionutter

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    Thank you all so very much!!! :thumbsup: :smashin: I echo JoelC's comments about the old Tag website, I miss it too :(

    I haven't confronted the seller yet with any of my findings but will do so. The seller is a very smooth character, his replies to me gave all sorts of plausible excuses as to why the unit ended up with him and appearing to validate his "auction description" and he is claiming ignorance. I'll just reproduce some of his answers to the same questions I put up here.

    "I bought the unit in a factory sale at Tag Mclaren Audio Ltd back in 2003. Yes I do have the receipt. I will scan it in and send it to you as soon as possible, but I will have to borrow a scanner first. I will try and get it done Monday night. I bought the unit as a new condition Black AV32R but that had been factory upgraded to Ultra2 Dual Processor Bypass 5.1 with 192K Dacs and EX 7.1 with all the listed software upgrades. I was told the unit had the latest spec, main PCB fitted so if in the future I wanted DAB it would be easier to fit.

    So it was a new Dual Processor to me, sorry for any confusion. I was told when I bought the unit, when a AV32R is upgraded you have the choice of a new fascia or to keep the old one, as the unit was already upgraded before Tag Mclaren sold the unit in the sale I would have to pay labor and the price of a new fascia so I decided to keep the unit as it was. You can check with IAG/TAG helpdesk but there is no need the serial number is the same as the one on my receipt so there is no need to worry. The helpdesk should be able to tell you that the unit was sold to me MR Bidhan Sutradhar Serial no: AVP-000150.

    I am selling the unit through my friends ebay account that's why.

    I have not got a computer.I am sorry for misleading you it is my first time selling on ebay. I will scan in the receipt and await your response after you have been contacted by the IAG helpdesk."

    As you guys can see, if it is not for the help I got from all of you on this forum, I may have proceeded with the purchase. As the truth about AVP-000150 is now known, thanks to all of you, I will not proceed with the purchase.

    One thing still puzzles me though. Teejoo, seeing it was your old unit, you know the entire history, so if you sent it back to IAG in 2004, how can the seller then claim to show me an invoice that show a purchase dated 2003? Unless the seller is doing big time fraud and is forging a fake invoice dated 2003? I will wait for him to show me the invoice though, out of interest to see what he does next and therefore will not confront him with the findings just yet. Unless the seller also surfes this website in which case he should know better :nono: :lesson:

    Needless to say, I think a report to Ebay should be next on my list of things to do. Teejoo, just curious as to what continuing problems you had with AVP-000150 that resulted in IAG replacing it with a new one? Presumably this means that 000150 still has the problems as of today..........???
     
  15. Teejoo

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    Hi,

    The processor is shipped 19-02-04 to Tag.
    Some other things that came to mind last night: it was a 5.1, upgraded to DP 7.1 but NO bypass!!
    I am now convinced however that it has a whole new board. I also asked (and paid) to replace the display, so this is true. The problems was it was making an electrical noise (like discharging static electricity). I think there was someone who fixed it later. But of course I simply do not know it's current state.
     
  16. Stevesky

    Stevesky
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    Aha, from my beer fueled brain I believe Bidhan used to work in TMA service department. I remember Theo's old unit as it came back with a (96/48K?) clocking problem on the mainboard, I helped service track the fault down. There was a decision made to replace his unit with a new one anyway, but last time I saw the unit the motherboard was upgraded, not a new one.
     
  17. Teejoo

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    Ok, so I was wrong on this one. Cheers dude.
    (It was indeed a clocking problem causing the sharc run at 1/3 speed or something. As soon as it got exciting by throwing in modes that needed real processing power, it didn't make it. Yes Steve, I sometimes pay attention to what you say :D :hiya: )
     
  18. Burgy100

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    Hi Audionutter,

    Dont bother with that person, just check out Hi-Fi Bitz, you find what your looking for on their!!!
     
  19. audionutter

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    Thanks everyone once again, for your help and info. I wonder why Bidhan wasn't more upfront with all this earlier if he used to work for TMA. Just an update to make it more interesting............he emailed me the invoice and I have uploaded it. The invoice is dated 04-03-04 (I think) and if you read it carefully, you can still read thru the blanked out bits. Teejoo's old unit of AVP-000150 was described as "scrap unit from service, sold as seen with no warranty agreed or implied". The most interesting bit is the price of £43.40 (or could be £48.40) !!! :eek:

    Interestingly, Phil Watson from helpdesk had this to say "According to my records the unit was originally a single processor and left the factory on the 30th july 1999 and was fitted with the surround back channels when it left the factory. The unit was then returned to tag mclaren and was put into our marketing stock where eventually it was upgraded to dual processor standard. The unit was then sold on as a new unit around a 2 years ago when tag mclaren was selling a majority its marketing stock."

    Which is obviously untrue since Teejoo (as the former owner) and John (as the former head honcho in service dept) have both said it was never part of Tag's marketing stock.

    Since Teejoo sent it back on 19-02-04 and it was sold by 04-03-04 (less than 2 weeks later) it is not plausible to believe Bidhan's story nor Phil's version. I don't want to ruffle any more feathers between anyone who may know Bidhan/Phil personally nor to create any tension so will just back out of the sale as I believe I have very valid reasons to do so. Maybe Bidhan had a word with Phil reagrding this before the reply was sent to me? Who knows? I suppose it's not important now.

    Now that the "full" story is apparent, I will contact Bidhan and link him to this page so that he can understand why I backed out of the sale. If I have offended anyone or put any noses out of joint between the original TMA and current IAG employees then please accept my apologies. But just have to say, the original TMA employees are the best! :thumbsup: :smashin: :clap:

    Oh and of course, big thanks to Teejoo/Theo too!
     

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  20. audionutter

    audionutter
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    This is my most recent email to Bidhan:

    Hello Bidhan,

    Thank you for all your emails regarding AV32R-serial number 000150. I wasn't aware that you are a former/current employee of TAG/IAG and if you had been more upfront with all the info I wouldn't have had to seek for the truth elsewhere. There are several reasons which made me uneasy to purchase AV32R Serial number 000150, perhaps the easiest way is for you to read what has been posted on the following website link:

    http://www.avforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=194209&page=2&pp=15

    I can only hope you understand my mixed feelings on this matter as I am extremely keen on getting my hands on an AV32R Dual Processor as an upgrade over my current AV32R Single Processor. After reading the website link, if you can be honest with me and tell me if AV32R-000150 is still plagued by the existing problems or if the original problem has been overcome by a full new DP board replacement, we may still have a deal on the assumption that price will have to be renegotiated.

    I hope you will not feel any hostility towards me, because I am sure you would have done the same thing if you were put in my situation as the sum of money involved is not small and not too far off what a new DP would have cost.

    Thank you.

    Kelvin.
     
  21. GrahamMG

    GrahamMG
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    I have the feeling that a bit of an investigation is going on at IAG towers 'cos of this one....... The real shame is that if the unit is working normally and has all the right bits it would have been nice to have but all this lark leaves you no choice but to walk away...
     
  22. Plump

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    Could be something else, seing this £48 invoice. Don't you think someone might have repaired and updated the unit and given it to ex employee as a favour or call it farewell toy...

    Still, the only reasonable move is to step back from ebay purchase.
     
  23. GrahamMG

    GrahamMG
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    Of course he could have just walked off with it........ Mind you advertising it for sale on a site known to be watched by TAG and IAG personel is a bit dim if that ever turned out to be the case..........
    Just walk away is the only sensible option for anyone less than very brave.
     
  24. roversd1

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    I sold AVP-000150 on behalf of TMA to a member of TMA's staff. It was a returned unit that had issues and was sold on internally.

    It is a very early unit but only in the sense that the fascia and chassis are original, the back panel, lid and m'board will be mostly new or newer.
     
  25. AMCross

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  26. edward

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    Notice there is no facility for asking awkward questions about the serial number or history.
     
  27. k_t

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  28. edward

    edward
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    Funny that.

    Does he visit this forum or did someone blow the whistle on him?

    Interesting quotes from reviews though. I don't recall seeing this
    many at the time.
     
  29. audionutter

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    Thought I'll just clarify: NOTHING TO DO WITH ME. Actually I wasn't aware that there was another auction up for the DP, but looking at it now I think this is an entirely different unit.

    I had nothing to do with this recent auction and didn't report anything to Ebay in the end. My further communications with him after the initial ones posted here were all cordial and in fact I had offered to go thru with the sale but at a lower price which was not accepted by him. I know this was contrary to all the good advice I received from here but since it was mentioned that the original unit had it's motherboard replaced i reckoned it was as good as new. Actually in the end it was Bidhan who suggested I get a new unit from HiFiBitz cos the price I offered was lower than HiFiBitz.
     
  30. roversd1

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    to be fair, I offloaded every bit of TMA kit I owned when I left.
     

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