Originally Posted by flycaster
Just read Audiodane's most recent blog and it seems that we of the black level problem will soon be back in "business." I'm no technician, but it does seem to me that Audiodane is doing a bang-up job on getting his adapter into shipping shape. His product does look real good and I can't wait to get it, but I do have one question that I don't think I have see asked before. Although AD is testing each unit, I'd like to know how he will be handling malfunctioning units and warranties???
Hello flycaster.. Thank you for your kind words. This has been a labor of love and a hobby project.. I have been wanting to build this unit for myself, and thought there might be a market for it (seems I was right). I have tried to build a professional product at garage-lab prices, but at the end of the day I'm still just a garage-lab hobbiest. I do have roughly 14 years of electrical engineering design experience and well over 20 years of programming experience, and I have used all of these skills to create the PMCv1.
I will do my best to support the product and the customer, but there is very little I can do that I haven't already designed into the PMCv1. It's algorithms have been designed around the electronic behavior of my
set (IIC communication timing windows, TV set power on/off timing windows, etc). If someone else's set has different timing mechanisms, there's not going to be much I can do unless I somehow am able to get copies of those timing charts and use it to improve the PMCv1 software. Currently the PMCv1 software pays very careful attention to measure when the TV is turned on, as well as reading back the EEPROM values after it updates them to double-check that the TV actually "took" the values. If successful, it blinks one pattern. If not, it blinks another pattern. Also, I have built in an "UNDO" switch to help protect against any problems caused by the PMCv1. Basically, the first time it updates your EEPROM values, it stores off the OLD values from the EEPROM.. If something doesn't work right, you can flip the switch from "GO" to "UN" and the next time the TV turns on it will once again update EEPROM value, but this time by restoring the original values read off before the first update, returning the EEPROM value to the "last known good values." Hopefully this is enough to recover from any problems.
Now, even with all of that said, I also know enough about business that there is no way with the currently product pricing that I can offer any sort of liability and/or warranty service. (Heck, at this pricing and low quantity I can't even make a pretty box for it; I just have to use shrink-tubing to protect the critical electronics.) The PMCv1 will strictly be sold on a "use at your own risk" basis, and that is part of the paperwork that I now need to get together as the sales page is almost live (I've started testing the shopping cart mechanism this week, you may have noticed if you've been to the site lately). If I were a large company or had dozens of products for sale, maybe I could take out some business insurance, but with a single product line and it priced so low, there's just no money left to put into an insurance plan. Furthermore, I only have one Panasonic Plasma (TC-P50G10).. The best I can offer is to do my best to understand the research found here in this thread, communicate offline with mironto to double-check my algorithms (since his DIY approach has been fairly widely tested successfully and is the basis of the PMCv1), and come up with the best reasonable test mechanism to verify each unit is functioning properly before putting it in an envelope. I have been doing all of these things, but you assessed correctly that there is no way I can guarantee that a PMCv1 will function correctly on YOUR set.
So, my current plan is to somehow gather feedback from customers (but without sending nagging emails) regarding how the unit performed, and turn back around and share that information (model number and feedback only of course, no customer names) on the PMCv1 page where others can use that information in an effort to increase their comfort level. If anyone has any suggestions of a better approach, please -- I am *ALL EARS* ..
I'm sorry this reply has been so long. I should probably find a way to capture this information on the PMCv1 site.. But I hope that helps set some minds at ease. My mind won't be "at ease" until every customer has replied with "it works!" ...
Originally Posted by Avgguy
1) I have no doubt AD will stand behind what he's done. I just hope we compensate him fairly.
2) Is there a "list" to get on to be able to get some of the first units ? Or maybe it's just first come, first serve on Paypal.
1) Thank you Avgguy, there have been some who have suggested that the USD$60 price point is too low for this product..
There have been others who have said it is too high.
All I can do is hope for the best. If the PMCv1 works for you and you wish to provide an additional token of your appreciation, then you are always more than welcome to followup with a paypal donation!
Maybe I should put THAT on the product page!
2) Right or wrong, I intentionally denied preorders and/or prepayments, because I could not be subject to another master (those that know their Christian Bible will understand that reference). I knew that a long schedule would upset prepaying customers, and the last thing I needed was more people breathing down my neck. There is a newsletter subscription that I offered to automatically send updates when I added new development blog entries, and that's the closest thing I've had to knowing how many people may be interested in actually buying a PMCv1...
But back to your question- the best I can do right now is offer first-come-first-serve. I can say that when the sale page goes live, I will update the blog, and at 11am the next day central time an email will automatically be sent notifying update subscribers that the sales page is live. I may try to time the sales page going live with the update email (e.g. putting the sales page live close to the time the newsletter goes out) to give newsletter subscribers the best chance at being "first in line." One problem I haven't yet solved is that the shopping cart system doesn't let me put a quantity in (yet) ... I hope to have that fixed in time. But if not, then I will simply offer a 100% refund on the sale if I cannot fulfill an order request. At this point, selling out too fast is the least of my concerns!