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Richer Sounds and Euro imports (again!)

Discussion in 'Plasma TVs' started by pwhite8314, Jan 12, 2003.

  1. pwhite8314

    pwhite8314
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    OK, first of all I know RS sometimes sell Euro imports, and going by other posts from this forum, it means my warranty is back-to-base rather than on site. I can live with all that (given the purchase price), hawever, I stil lthink they've been deceiptful in selling me this....

    Here's the story......

    After trying to get the Pio screen (and fialing), I plumped for the Panny instead. Rs did me a good deal - after a lot of haggling, all of the following came to £4k:

    * TH42PW5B
    * Tuner & card for above
    * Tilting bracket
    * 2m comp leads
    * Eltax 12R sub

    I had to pay separately for the warranty.

    Note that the model ID was suffixed with a 'B', as indeed was the quote and receipt (as is the RS brochure). I checked at the time that it would be a UK model with the RGB card etc etc, and was told yes.

    However, I get it home yesterday, and the only input is via a VGA port.

    Unfortunetly by the time I got the box open RS were shut, so it's going to have to wait until tomorrow.

    On the basis that I purchased a 'B' model, but was supplied with an 'EX', what should I do? I've power up the screen, and it all seems fine, and as I've said before, I'm not too bothered about the back-to-base vs. on-site as that's Richer's problem.

    They price-matched the scrreen based on the PRC-Direct price, which came with the RGB card, so the least RS can do is supply me that card, but should I be asking for anything more with regards to the screen? Presumably I'm within my rights to return the unit, but I'd rather not do that.
     
  2. KBDVD

    KBDVD
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    HI pwhite8314,

    Am I missing something here?

    You bought the Tuner + it's card right?

    So you should have 1x VGA connector on the screen (PC) & one connector for the tuner on the slot in card! (TY-42TM5H)

    The card for the tuner only has one input on it, and you make all your connections to the rear of the tuner box.

    So what exactly is the problem?

    Best Regards,
    KBDVD.
     
  3. pwhite8314

    pwhite8314
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    Sorry - I missed out a key bit of detail - the tuner & card are a special order for RS, so they're to follow in a fortnight. The screen should have been supplied with the normal RGB card in the meantime, so that I could see what, if any, degradation was caused by connecting the tuner.

    Therefore, the only thing I can look at on the screen at the moment is the signal from my laptop - great.

    TBH, the bigger issue is that of them supplying me with a grey import, when I ordered the UK variant.
     
  4. SimonD

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    Pete,

    Only you can answer the question as to whether you are happy to have a grey import. Presumably if you were conscerned enough to make sure that it was a UK model on the invoice then you will not be happy with an import.

    I guess it boils down to if you are happy to watch it disappear for weeks on end if it does break down.

    IIRC The screens do not come with any card as standard, you have to specify which card you want, I would imagine RS didn't see the need to supply an RGB card when you also ordered the Tuner.
     
  5. gringottsdirect

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    All RS Panasonic plasmas are sourced from other than Panasonic U.K. ?
     
  6. StooMonster

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    In addition to what SimonD says...

    The RCA terminal board is an extra with series 5, and no longer fitted as standard; unless you order a model with one in. As you are being supplied with Tuner card it is correct that you only have VGA input.

    If you want to buy an RCA Terminal board to compare against Tuner, Panasonic will supply one for £500.

    Warranty: also bear in mind that under Sales Of Goods And Services Act (1984) that if product goes wrong within 28 days you are entitled to a new one as replacement and do not have to accept a repair.

    I'd also suggest that they are in breach of this act if they sell you one item, but supply another.

    StooMonster
     
  7. pwhite8314

    pwhite8314
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    Well it would be, except they assured me that it would come with the RCA terminal board. RS price matched on a supplier that ships the (UK sourced) screen with the RCA board, and supplied me with an EU sourced screen with no board - hardly a 'match'!



    Nope, doesn't bother me in the slightest, however, as with my cars, I expect to pay a lower price if I choose (which I didn't) to take an import. They're all the same, other than the power lead and the manufactuers manipulation of the warranty to try to convince consumers to buy in the UK (exactly the same situation exists in the car import market).

    Errrr, no! THat's what I'll be taking up with RS, and getting something in writing. If they can't do that (which I doubt), either the screen goes back or they cross my palm with silver - their choice.

    In fairness to RS, they're probably the most flexible company I've ever dealt with in the past, so I'm sure they'll sort something out for me. They open at 10, so I'll keep you posted.
     
  8. SimonD

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    Pete,

    Just playing devils advocate here, please don't take these the wrong way...

    They could argue that it was a *price* match and *you* changed the spec by specifying the tuner card. I would imagine in a court of law that would be classed as a reasonable assumption especially as they would have had to order the screen, the card and the tuner. (worth preparing yourself with an answer for!)

    I would doubt that RS have any choice in the matter. If it is an EU model then presumably, Panasonic UK will want to have nothing to do with it. IMHO I would be surprised if they refund you some money, as they will have no problems selling it to someone else.

    Let us know how you get on and good luck!

    Simon
     
  9. pwhite8314

    pwhite8314
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    :devil: Devils advocate is fine, I have the answers...!

    1. The screen was ordered with the RCA terminal board - there's no arguement here. The tuner & card were ordered in addition (with a 2 week wait), on the understanding that they could be returned if the degrade the picture too much when compared to the RCA card. Therefore it's fair to say that I obviously required both the RCA card and the tuner.

    2. By law, they can no longer sell this screen as new, so the fact that it's used, and an EU import, would mean they could have some issues selling it.

    Either way, I spoke to the store yesterday, and they were going off to speak to their procurement team - I suspect they feel a bit 'done' as well. They've admitted that it should have shipped with the board, and that it should be a 'B' rather than an 'EX' model (they actually have a separate code on thier system for the EX's). THey didn't call me back though, so I'll give them until midday today to sort things out. THey did also offer to swap it out for a 'B', but as the screen is perfect in every other way (no dead pixels, but is this less common now anyway??), and given it could be tricky for them to re-sell it, I'm happy to do a deal on the 'EX' screen.

    Stoomonster
    Really? That much? I've not been able to find any websites that sell it, but that seems a bit steep.
     
  10. StooMonster

    StooMonster
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    I ordered a Panny TH-50PHW5B with Tuner; I assumed it came with RCA board like older series of Panny but it didn't.

    After some experimentation with Tuner and trying to improve SkyDigital picture with iScan products, I am seriously considering getting rid of tuner and replacing with RCA board.

    I had read posts where people said it cost £200, but Panasonic say it's a spare and charge £500 for it! "Bit steep" is an understatement!

    StooMonster
     
  11. pwhite8314

    pwhite8314
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    Well I've just spoken to RS again, and the RCA board is on its' way to me, so if I can't see much difference between that and the tuner, I'll let you know, if you're still interested in buying one.

    Although I can't really fault the RS service, their purchasing section clearly don't know what they're talking about - they still maintain all their Panny screens are UK sourced, even though the box say 'EX' and it shipped with a Euro power lead! THe shop has agreed to replace my screen with a 'B' screen, and to let me have use of the EX until the new one arrives, so I can't complain. Imaging Currys or Dixons doing something like that - NOT.
     
  12. JamieD

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    I too ordered a B and got an EX but inside the box was, by the looks of it, hastily couriered from Japan, a RCA terminal board.

    I think the RCA terminal board is about £40-£50. The tuner is £400-£500 and is reported, on this forum, to offer a worse picture than the either VGA or RCA board inputs. You could just stick with the VGA input and use a http://www.rgbtosvideo.com/rgb-vga/rgb-vga.htm like me, and many others.
     
  13. Bonzaimaster

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    Speak to Liam at www.av-sales.com. He quoted me £208 for a BNC board.
     
  14. SimonD

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    Pete,

    Glad to hear it is sorted. Sounds like RS are being fair and reasonable.
    I await your report on the screen :)

    Simon
     
  15. MAW

    MAW
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    BTW guys, if it's imported from europe, it's hardly off-white, let alone grey import, and the terms of the warranty are the same wherever in euroland you are. Panasonic UK should honour all clauses in your pan european warranty, and I would consider legal action if they did not. Richers might even help you, they seem those sort of people. All my dealings with them have been favourable also. (though I've not bought a plasma from them)
     
  16. pwhite8314

    pwhite8314
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    The Panny Euro warranty, as per the leaflet in the box, is back-to- base, at my (or Richers) expense. I understood that UK screens were an on-site/loan warranty?
     
  17. MontyUK

    MontyUK
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    From what I understand, Panasonic's pan-european warranty (the one you quote) is different to their UK warranty . . .
     
  18. MAW

    MAW
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    Something I will check for a definitive answer then, I know who to ask....
    edit: Both my contacts are not available right now, as soon as I can ask them (Euro. consumer lawyer and panasonic retailer who has both booklets on his shelf) I'll post the opinion here.
     
  19. j_smit

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    As I understand it, by law all a manufacturer needs to supply is a 1 year Return to Base warranty. The fact that Pana UK offer one year loan replacement is a bonus for buying a TRUE UK screen. If you import a screen that Pana UK don't make ANY money why should they offer you a loan.

    Don't forget that "Base" could be anywhere - i.e. Italy or Germany!

    And on the issue of RTB why should RS pay for it to be returned? As a customer you have the choice to buy an extended warranty that will give you a 3 year swap out. If you decide not to take the warranty you pay for the shipping. Only seems fair to me.

    Would love to hear if anyone really does disagree with me though
     
  20. MontyUK

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    That's actually nonsense . . . legally there's nothing to stop Panasonic UK offering improved terms over the pan-european warranty for a UK sourced product. This is already commonplace amongst car manufacturers, who'll generally offer a three year warranty on a brand new UK model, whereas the pan-european warranty for the same manufacturer may only be two years.

    HOWEVER, Panasonic UK DO have to honour the pan-european warranty as well, so 'return-to-base' will be to Panasonic UK. It's simply not the case that because a screen is sourced in Germany, you'd have to send it back there to be serviced / repaired.

    In the specific case of the Richer Sounds / Panny though, I would say that the RS 3 year extended warranty is such a bargain at £250 that this issue should be irrelevant IMHO.
     
  21. MAW

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    Whether Panasonic make money or not is not the issue. Euro law is the issue. What I have now been told, by a retailer, not the lawyer, to be clear, is that if you have a warranty problem, Pan.uk know from your serial no. that they never sold the screen. The man on the phone will tell you it's a grey import. Not true, it's European, and has identical spec everywhere in Europe, and is not grey, it's european. We are one these days. Same with cars. They are obliged, and will, treat you the same. They say out of goodwill, but in fact they must, but who cares, as long as they do. Anyone any experience to relate? I know of one case where this was so.

    BTW I agree on the RS warranty, or anyone else with such a reasonable warranty deal. Just watch out for dixons on warrantys, anyone know what theirs costs?
     
  22. MontyUK

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    Legally, Panasonic UK MUST honour the pan-european warranty, whether they like it or not. If they want to call it 'goodwill', then whatever, but it's not . .. they have no choice, whether or not they sold the machine. If it was sourced in the EU, it's covered.
     

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