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About Kingsley Company: Be aware of parts cannibalization before buying


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clitang, you're still considering getting anything from kingsley after reading my tale of woe and hearing what kingsley does to its inventory?  your appetite for risk scares the bejeezus outta me  ;D

 

are you by chance looking at the black ps audio ppp on the top shelf of a window display, the one with the original protective tape still on the indicator window?  when mikhail of kingsley offered to do an exchange but not refund, my sights first zeroed in on that black ppp (price was identical to my ps audio amp's, and boy does it look pristine!).  but when i asked i was told that unit had already been opened up for parts, so that was the end of my interest.  (for that matter, he could not tell me what in the store had not been cracked open.)  fwiw, if i were you i would not even bother trying to check; just run away!  :o

 

you also have to define 'good working condition' because i tested the amp before i paid, and it played fine in-store.  in fact it was fine in my home--for three weeks.  per kingsley, it was in good condition when i bought it; hence, now that there's a problem i'm told, "you want warranty?  you go ps audio!"

 

- mark

 

Thank you for you rinformation.

 

I guess I will give it a miss altought the price of the PS Audio PPP looks attractive. With the price of the display set it is not far from an "imported" unit price. Not worth taking the risk.

 

 

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It's sad to see Kingsley going this way as I have been buying quite a lot of things for many years from them.

 

Regards

This is probably the result of internal family disputes. Or else they would not have allowed a lot of good brands to be lost, coupled with a pretty threadbare, if any, customer support. They were never like this. For Mikhail to be bochup, I'm not surprised if he was thrown into the deep end without a visible lifeline. I guess he's doing the best he can which is not much as he's hands are pretty much tied based on the above comments... Sad.

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yup, sorry it can be tough to see; you'll need to scroll right and left.  there's a scroll bar at the bottom of the post above. 

 

it was either that or reduce the size of the pics (which would make the tampering too small to see).  if anyone's interested, pm me your email add and i'll forward you the pics.

 

that picture is ok. can see the inferior soldering...

 

actually if you take the picture and do some circling, it would be easier for ppl to spot the poor workmanship.

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It's sad to see Kingsley going this way as I have been buying quite a lot of things for many years from them.

 

Regards

 

Better check if all your stuff are ok and working properly, just in case, before it is too late after they wind-up and close shop.

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think i must commend PS Audio for its support.

before considering the PPP (which I never bought due to other reasons), i spent some time in the PS Audio forums and also noted similar issues from Singapore users there about the dealer (which I guess should be Kingsley), but which i think was resolved by PS Audio directly instead.

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Mark,  could it be the salesman try to make his last commission from the unit ?  How much did you pay "below cost" ?  It's unusual to me that a long established company would want to ruin their reputation because of some unsold old units. I understand Kingsley's boss is always not around, the old father has hand over the running to the son...the salesman is Mik...

 

I don't have any dealing with them but I do have friends who are their customer since 20yrs ago, sometime we just drop by for some music demo. From the look of the circuit board, it's just a small board, it's so easy for them to freight in a replacement instead of re-soldering. As an old horse in the industry, It's also strange that they did not offer you a Full refund, afterall they are not those fly-by-night 2nd-hand dealers and you're also their old faithful customer.

 

Regarding stripping parts from brand new units to perform fast replacement, this is Common. Nothing New.  Everyone is doing it. Ovens, Fridge, Wine cellars, Vacuum machines etc...I know this very well because I myself did it many yrs ago when I was helping a friend in the home appliances business.

Why do that ? because holding too many spares is costly, and we usually take from the new unit which  also used as showroom demo., after replacement and test working, these demo units will be sold in Warehouse sales at half price with full warranty of course..... ;D

 

SL Chua...

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below is a post i'd intended to put up yesterday; it indirectly addresses some of sl chua's comments, but i'll probably also revisit the comments in later posts i make...

 

 

fellow xtremeplace forumers, a couple of updates to my kingsley cannibalized amp sob story:

 

>> last monday the 11th, mikhail of kingsley called me up to say that his boss, as a measure of goodwill, was willing to give me a refund if i returned the ps audio amp i bought from kingsley.  however, i would only be given 75% of my money back; 20% would be deducted as a restocking/processing charge [i was also told i had already gotten some use out of the unit], and another 5% would be deducted to cover the credit card company's cost.

 

i told mikhail to tell his boss that instead of a refund i wanted kingsley to reimburse me the dhl shipping cost i'd incurred sending my amp to ps audio in colorado.  he said he'd have to get his boss to ok this, and would get back to me.

 

 

>> mikhail called again friday afternoon the 15th.  this time he told me that as a measure of his boss's goodwill, they would give me a full refund of the price i paid, without deductions, if i would return the amp to them. 

 

i reiterated i wanted my dhl shipping cost reimbursed.  (mikhail could not give me a yes/no regarding the dhl cost reimbursement, and said he'd have to tell his boss and get back to me--yet again.) 

 

it would not be surprising to learn kingsley knows about this xp thread and the trouble i've gone through to follow mikhail's "you want warranty?  you go ps audio!" advice.  assuming they are already aware of this thread, it would follow that they know:

 

1. the refund offer they are making is an empty (actually, insulting) gesture because there's no logical/reasonable way would i return the amp to them after ps audio has done full board replacements and brought my unit back up to perfect spec, and

 

2. just in case i were dumb enough to return the ps audio-repaired amplifier to them, they would get a motherlode of fresh parts to mine (and they could try conning someone else). 

 

either way, they suckered me once, and i'm not letting them do that again.  it's sad kingsley treats its customers so poorly and regards its customers so lowly.  for a time i thought it was just me, but going by reply posts on this thread and pms i've gotten, i'm fully cognizant this is standard kingsley behavior.

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Mark,  could it be the salesman try to make his last commission from the unit ?  How much did you pay "below cost" ?  

 

"below cost" is something we can't confirm because it's very unlikely kingsley would honestly reveal what their cost is.  as far as i'm concerned, such unverifiable statements are simply sales tricks.  (but i now understand that such a term is a likely red flag for bad goods, so beware.)

 

It's unusual to me that a long established company would want to ruin their reputation because of some unsold old units. I understand Kingsley's boss is always not around, the old father has hand over the running to the son...the salesman is Mik...

 

As an old horse in the industry, It's also strange that they did not offer you a Full refund, afterall they are not those fly-by-night 2nd-hand dealers and you're also their old faithful customer.

 

indeed, kingsley is a long-established company (on the acra record i secured, kingsley's registration date is 30/12/1974, and commencement date is 01/04/1963--before singapore's independence!).  obviously kingsley's developed internal problems and this is sad, but that's not really my business. 

 

what is my concern is that as a customer i'm being cheated.  this cheating appears to have been going on for some time now yet there's hardly any word of it online ...so this is why i've started up this thread.

 

regarding being a 2nd-hand dealer, well, given the terminations by good brands it seems there's not much (if any?) that's new in the store, and they are holding for sale 'customer consignments' so you're probably much closer than you think.

 

Regarding stripping parts from brand new units to perform fast replacement, this is Common. Nothing New.  Everyone is doing it. Ovens, Fridge, Wine cellars, Vacuum machines etc...I know this very well because I myself did it many yrs ago when I was helping a friend in the home appliances business.

 

stripping parts off inventory units, right or wrong, is not as damaging to household appliances (many times this could simply be a screwdriver op) as it is to high-end audio equipment/electronics.  kingsley's unsoldering/resoldering fundamentally damaged the pcbs and surrounding parts, which might be why they ended up jury rigging fixes (e.g. the cheap resistors bridging some connection).  what i got was an amp that was barely functioning, one kingsley knew would go bad soon after i took it home.  (evidence of this is mikhail reminding me the unit was shown to be working in-store, so they would give no refund once i took the unit out of their premises, and also mikhail smugly telling me i should have asked the right questions before i bought.)

 

after replacement and test working, these demo units will be sold in Warehouse sales at half price with full warranty of course..... ;D

 

that's nice, but per kingsley, if i want to make a proper warranty claim, i'm told to go to ps audio or the new agent [mik: "you want warranty?  you go ps audio!"].  kingsley seems to take for granted ps audio would stand by their product even if the terminated agent had extensively tampered and damaged it, which is why kingsley does not hesitate to treat its inventory (and customers) so badly.

 

any business with kingsley's callous attitude toward suppliers, products and customers does not deserve to exist.

 

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For me, I would ask for a full refund and I won't waste time on this....but since you have the US supplier to restore it for you, not bad afterall, a " Brand new unit " at " cost ". Hope they give you a complete renew.  Unless you are in the trade, there is No way of knowing the Cost. Even if your set is retail at say S$3000. and you bought it at S$2000. it may or not be their cost.

In home appliances, the mark up is always double, because it usually last 5-10 yrs...that's why nowadays TV, appliances are not made to last. Agent can make more money by selling spares ! The world has changed.  You're not alone having this problem. Once I went to a echoloft home dealer's house to audit some amps & speakers, Amps cost $2000. and speakers cost $4000. I asked the dealer what happen if goods reach my home and things happen ? He simply told me, " Now I tested for you & it's OK what ?" Which idiot would part $6k to a home dealer unless it's a friend and know the equipment well..Life is short, don't want to waste time on idiots..... ;D

 

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well, I will not spend 6k on home dealer on amp or cdp, speaker still ok.. But buying 2nd stuffs inherited some risk as it might be a sitting duck the next day..

i think there are ways to mitigate the risk somewhat. :) just be a little more picky in your choice of used sets and do more homework on where the unit has been.

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i think there are ways to mitigate the risk somewhat. :) just be a little more picky in your choice of used sets and do more homework on where the unit has been.

 

If seller or 2nd hand dealer offer to open case inspection, other than that base on outer appearance and working condition cannot tell much.

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If seller or 2nd hand dealer offer to open case inspection, other than that base on outer appearance and working condition cannot tell much.

 

Easier said than done, will you open up your CDP or Amp for me to inspect if you are selling? What happen during the opening of case and you screw up, whose fault is it?

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There are seller opened up the top covers of their amp / CDP for visual inspection, these seller are honest and they really take care of their toys.....In Kingsley's case, I'm not surprise the salesman is in full control of the whole transaction. The Boss is in the dark, he may not know what's happening..... >:(

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Easier said than done, will you open up your CDP or Amp for me to inspect if you are selling? What happen during the opening of case and you screw up, whose fault is it?

 

I will if the buyer request to do so, what to afraid of if your sale is honest. If the equipment just fail or screw up by juz opening the top cover than can forget about offering for sale.

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Guess we just have to be very careful when buying from these 'warehouse' or clearance sales.

 

Many yrs ago, went to a warehouse sale and saw a pair of brit spkrs at very good price.  Was looking around and kept 'nio-ing' the spkr and then, from a distance, realised that something was not right.  I could see light coming thru the rear port thru the translucent grill cloth!!  Check the other spkr and found that the tweeter is missing from that side!!

 

It might have been a clearance sale but how can anyone sell something that is not fully functioning, even if it is at a discounted price ???!!!

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  • 2 weeks later...

Based on info in this thread...its even harder to trust used hifi, especially from dealers.

Most of them offer equipment repair service as well. It would be very easy to cannibalize on sale items for parts.

Short audition is hardly ideal to spot such a mod.

 

Unless you really know about specific equipment, you cant really see if its using original parts , even if you open the top for inspection !!

Once you take the item home, the dealer will refuse to acknowledge any mods.

 

Does anyone have experience buying from http://www.listeninn.com/ ?

They have some interesting equipment but not sure of their trustworthiness.

 

 

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Not to trust anyone juz bear with it when buying used item, the dealer may not know the item is mod or not mod he juz buy in when the condition and price r right for them. And there juz post and sell agian and make some profit from there. Only thing can trust is your own luck.

 

Based on info in this thread...its even harder to trust used hifi, especially from dealers.

Most of them offer equipment repair service as well. It would be very easy to cannibalize on sale items for parts.

Short audition is hardly ideal to spot such a mod.

 

Unless you really know about specific equipment, you cant really see if its using original parts , even if you open the top for inspection !!

Once you take the item home, the dealer will refuse to acknowledge any mods.

 

Does anyone have experience buying from http://www.listeninn.com/ ?

They have some interesting equipment but not sure of their trustworthiness.

 

 

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