Hi to all. I'm a long-time mostly lurker from Romania. Earlier this year I decided to bite the bullet and get the pricey but highly regarded EC Studio Jr. What followed was ... a string of accidents coupled with a customer service experience that was ... well, just unimaginable. Short story. The amp arrived to me in August, damaged. Loud high-frequency noise and mediocre sound. I've sent it to Craig for repair, but USPS for some reason considered the address incomplete and returned both packages. The address was correct. One of the packages reached Craig's city and stayed there 5 days before returning. Because Craig didn't register for email updates, he didn't know about this. In the end this package got lost before leaving US. The other package got returned before reaching Craig's city and arrived back to me. All this plus a long list of dubious details. At the moment I'm engaged in a discussion with him asking for compensation, and I get in reply one-liners along the "Nothing I could do, not my business". Long story. 1. June. Craig writes to me that he has an amp ready, but it has slightly damaged front plate. Works perfectly. I can get this for $100 discount or wait another one. I accepted. No idea whether this has any relationship with the damage, but we already had a similar report: https://www.superbestaudiofriends.o...ado-was-the-studio-jr.511/page-37#post-206434 2. When computing shipping cost, Judy asks me $100 extra for packaging. First time in my life an online retailer asks extra payment for packaging. And note that if I would refuse, I would lose $100 cancellation fee. So it was no option. This already looked like a little scam. But the amp must be so good, I thought. Sure it's worth $100 more. 3. The amp arrived in Jul. Sadly, it had loud high-frequency ringing resembling cicadas. Different intensity depending on tubes, but always present. And rather mediocre, dry unengaging sound. There were no signs of damage during transportation. 4. The quality of packaging was, let's say "possibly sufficient but could be better". The dampening foam on top was rather thin and completely cut around the high transformers. So transformers were essentially suspended in holes, with no foam between them and the cardboard. The box was a bit smaller than maximum allowed size for international shipping, so I guess there was room for taller boxes with more dampening. I can make photos if needed. 5. Craig first proposed to send a known good pair of tubes, to check maybe my Gold Lion 300Bs have some microphony that resonates with the HF heater frequency. Tubes arrived - issue still there. 6. Then he agreed to take the amp for repair, but I'd had to pay the cost to US. His overall tone so far was somewhat dry, as if I damaged the amp but didn't tell him. So I decided not to argue this point now and let him diagnose the amp first. 7. This is the email where he instructs me how to ship: ``` If the amp is unusable you will need to send it back. I have never had this problem reported, the amp was perfect when it left here I have no idea what happened. Eddie Current LLC 5038 N. Parkway Calabasas Suite 501 Calabasas, CA. 91302 ``` Yup, that's all. No instructions what to write on the package, what value to declare, whether to insure or not. I know there's some maximum import value for electronics that is not taxed ($500 ?), so I decided to declare low value and not insure it. Judging by his attitude so far didn't want to risk paying import fees. 8. I shipped the amp and sent him the tracking numbers. 9. First package arrived to his city, stayed there for 5 days and ... unexpectedly changed status as "returning to sender". In the end this package got stuck in some location before leaving US and was declared lost 3 months later. 10. The 2nd package (the PSU) got returned at the same time but before arriving to Craig's city. It got back to me with a paper saying "Return to sender. Vacant. Flow to manual processing." 11. I contacted Craig about the return, and turns out he didn't register for email updated, he didn't know 1st package arrived to his city. 12. I asked him to at least go to postal office and investigate what happened. Or call USPS customer service. He refused. Here are some of his emails from this period: I don't know why USPS are returning the packages. Did you put in the custom declarations "Made in the USA audio equipment returned for repair." Sometimes customs does not know what the item is and returns them out of laziness." --- What does sending me the tracking number mean. You are the shipper, the origin is your country there is nothing I can do. It is my responsibility after the packages are signed for and delivered. Until then it is your concern to figure out what happened. --- I cannot do anything, I did not send the packages. --- We can only guess USPS had reasons to believe his work place was vacant, for some reason he was not interested to find out. Maybe he knew why? And as you can see, he figured out he has some shipping instructions to give me, after the fact. We can guess he didn't even care to check the tracking numbers. Otherwise he wouldn't complain I didn't do the right customs declarations. 13. I opened petitions on Romanian postal service, but couldn't get much. They would just forward my petitions to USPS. 14. 3 months after shipping the 1st package was officially declared lost. RO post offered me a miserable refund that mostly covers shipping fees. 15. I presented the summary of the whole story above to Craig for review: ``` Hi mr Uthus, I see you are hesitant to reply. Well, you can understand I'm very dissatisfied with your customer service and the whole experience. I'm tempted to post our story on online forums. But I really don't want to do that. I'd rather reach an agreement with you. So before I create needless noise, I'd like you to review the facts: ... ``` In the end I asked him to either send me a working amp for no extra cost, or fully refund me (Then I would send the PSU back). 16. A couple more emails, still along the lines of "not my busuness": cuthus: It is the Holiday season here [it was Thanksgiving week], we do not check computers when taking a break. This letter seems like a needless rant. I was willing to repair any defects, and pay return shipping. Insurance to me was not obtained leaving you without compensation for a lost shipment. How is this my fault?. --- me: So you believe you did nothing wrong, and If I make the whole story, all 10 points above public, this is not going to affect you? It seems like you only took from my email the piece most convenient to you. Please take time and give me a reasonable solution when the holiday is over. --- cuthus: I am sorry for your loss. Your country has one of the most corrupt Postal systems. You of all people should not need be reminded of how important insurance is. The product never arrived here. I have to sign for any insured package. No signature, no package no responsibility for loss. --- me: You just proved again that you don't pay attention to the facts and likely never checked the tracking numbers. The package was lost in US. If it would get lost outside US we would see the message "Departed ... United States" --- cuthus, last email: I have no control how the carrier conducts business. If they delivered to me there would be a signature for proof of delivery. I am not an insurance company, you did not contract with me for insurance on your shipment. You chose not to protect yourself. The end. Your thoughts?