Marantz projector problems and US purchase? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 163 Old 04-15-2002, 09:38 AM - Thread Starter
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There have been a number of threads lately from Marantz projector users re: various problems with the Marantz projectors. I just ordered my Marantz projector through a local (US) authorized dealer... but I am having second thoughts given all the problems being reported.

I believe a number of us are on the verge of purchasing this projector. For us to make a better decision, can those of you who purchased this projector through authorized dealers in the US reply back to this thread and tell us if you are also encountering one or more of the same problems: flickering (other than initial bulb burn-in), bulbs that develop hairline cracks and die prematurely, wavy lines, dead/stuck mirrors, etc.

If you did encounter such problems, did Marantz acknowledge it and resolve it?

I know (based on threads on this forum) that the Japanese and authorized US versions are supposed to be nearly identical -- but I am trying to see if the US version fails as often or fares any better because of any power supply differences it might have.

Dan Miller (Marantz): We would really love to hear from Marantz as to why so many users are reporting problems and what you guys are doing to fix them (for authorized users) as well as prevent them from future units. At this point of time, this is beginning to severely affect the decision to purchase the VP-12S1.

Many thx.
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post #2 of 163 Old 04-15-2002, 10:14 AM
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amrud,

I second the motion!

Victor


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post #3 of 163 Old 04-15-2002, 12:41 PM
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amrud, I would wait until you see some satisfied customers, regardless of where they purchased the pj from. It seems that there are quite a few, 2/3 of all owners based on the last time I looked at the poll, who are having flickering problems not to mention some of the other problems. I would hang loose until Marantz steps up and announces a fix for these problems.
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post #4 of 163 Old 04-15-2002, 12:50 PM
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I would definitely wait!!!

Mike

The Mayans were full of sh*t!!!
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post #5 of 163 Old 04-15-2002, 01:46 PM
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Ditto. No one at Marantz seems to understand what is causing these issues. And if you do have a problem, it apparently takes several weeks to get a replacement right now, and folks getting replacements still seem to have problems.

Re the flicker issue, I don't believe this is a bulb burn-in thing. Marantz burns in their PJs for 100 hours per Dan, so I'm assuming this would take care of any transient problems. Also, I don't understand how a filament in a bulb can produce a flicker on its own. You send a current thru the filament, and this produces a fixed amount of light. Presumably the amount of current thru the bulb must be varying to to produce the flicker, and since the flicker is instantaneous, it's unlikely any variation in filament impedance could cause this.

I'm going to wait a few months, then return mine for replacement. Hopefully by then they will have worked out the kinks.
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post #6 of 163 Old 04-15-2002, 02:33 PM
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Billybob, if Marantz burned 100 hours on my pj then they go more use out of the bulb than I did, LOL!
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post #7 of 163 Old 04-15-2002, 02:43 PM
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LOL.....Yeah, how are they getting 100 hours of use out of this projector????

Mike

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post #8 of 163 Old 04-15-2002, 08:46 PM
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Funny thing happened yesterday. I turned on my projector and for 2 hours did not see a single flicker. I have gotten real sensitive to the flicker and can now even see the slightest variations. Shut her down, and went to sleep.

Today, when I got a chance to try her out again, the flicker was there again. Still seems to happen at least every 20 secs, some harder than others.

So why did it run flawless yesterday? I did nothing different. Who knows???

I just want to add as others have, that everyone who is planning on buying one, to wait until the kinks are worked out. This thing definately has some issues.

While this projector just about beats out every projector I have owned in almost all categories, the flicker alone kills it. I now miss my PLV-60, with solarization, posterization, and all it graininess.

I hope Marantz comes thorugh with a solution.


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post #9 of 163 Old 04-15-2002, 11:20 PM
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Quote:
While this projector just about beats out every projector I have owned in almost all categories, the flicker alone kills it. I now miss my PLV-60, with solarization, posterization, and all it graininess.
I have been browsing around the CRT Forum again now because of my Marantz. I can overlook setup and space issues now because of the 2 CRT projectors I owned they both always powered on and worked properly. I had to say a prayer every time I turned the Marantz on and guess what.....My prayers were never answered. Nothing but trouble!!!!

Mike

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post #10 of 163 Old 04-16-2002, 03:18 AM
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What an unbelievable shame...

Marantz will work it out, I'm sure. They have to. But I hope they don't try current owner's patience much longer for the sake of themselves and their best, early adopter customers.
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post #11 of 163 Old 04-16-2002, 06:56 AM
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Marantz as a company has made very clear their position, and it is not good.

I no longer trust them to resolve these issues. Sorry.
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post #12 of 163 Old 04-16-2002, 07:44 AM
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My guess, for what its worth, is that we somehow have a subtle shipping damage problem. There are about 40 or so Marantz owners around this forum who have posted at various times. A very few of those have reported problems, the vast majority if not all from those buying from Japan.

Most audio/video gear is packaged in a way to prevent damage when shipped on a palette on in a larger shipping container. The box is not usually intended to be the actual sole shipping box. When I was involved in manufacturing power conditioner conditioners it took us three generations of packing configurations to get it right to ship individual units. The handling damage from UPS/FedEx/DHL carriers defied belief.

The Marantz I bought from ********** was only in the original box with small bubble-wrap wrapped around it. Not nearly as good as double boxes. I was lucky, so far. My projector has been flawless.

As to the Marantz response: I thought Dan Miller's post on 4/11 was as complete as we could want. They don't know what's causing the flicker probllem either and are trying to get the engineers in Japan involved.

From the warranty standpooint, Marantz US has at least been straightforward from the first, they will only honor wattanty claims from those who personally bought the projectors in Japan. I knew this when I bought my pj from Kwon and have also posted it numerous times both on the forum and in PMs so others were aware of this as well. Thats the risk we take to buy at half price.
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post #13 of 163 Old 04-16-2002, 07:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Carl Brinkman
My guess, for what its worth, is that we somehow have a subtle shipping damage problem. There are about 40 or so Marantz owners around this forum who have posted at various times. A very few of those have reported problems, the vast majority if not all from those buying from Japan.

Carl,

While I agree, that there have been instances of shipping damage, this does not answer why many people have said, that they are going into their local dealers and seeing this "flicker" phenomenom on their display. I expect Marantz will get to the bottom of this, my only wishes are that Marantz will open their service center for this unit here in the US, and will be able to fix the problem. I have purchased my unit from Japan, so I too understand that in order to get warranty repair, I will have to send it back to Japan, but I am willing to pay for the fix out of pocket here in the US, if its not too expensive.

I wonder, when a fix does show up, will Marantz announce what it is, and will someone with the expertise be able to perform the service themselves. There are many Projector tech gurus here, maybe one of them will be willing to cure our problems, if marantz refuses to, at least for importers anyway. Far fetched, I know... But this forum never stops to amaze me.


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post #14 of 163 Old 04-16-2002, 09:22 AM
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One of the probllems we are ALL facing is that Marantz simply does not properly support this projector here in the US. As of a month ago there were NO repair or troubleshooting facilities anywhere outside of Japan. Thats why all warranty repairs go right back to Japan for repair, even US purchased units.

A traditional excuses for having export pricing higher than in the country of origin is the need to set up local repair and warranty operations. In our case Marantz is simply pricing the units at what the market will bear to US dealers and keeping the difference with very little going into US support. As long as competitors like DWIN, Plus etc. delay introducing competitive units they can get away with it.
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post #15 of 163 Old 04-16-2002, 11:47 AM
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A little thought popped into my head. Several weeks ago a merger with Denon and Marantz was announced. The announcement made it seem that the Denon expertise with audio and the Marantz expertise with video was match made in heaven. The funny thing was that I always liked the Marantz Audio and never thought much of the few dabbles then did with video {display} devices. A summary of my comments were, I think this was a merger for cash. Quite possibly Marantz and Denon thought that they had a cash cow with this Marantz DLP projector (compared to retail pricing from Japan, their margins from US sales appear to be phenomonal). Anyway, I thought they only assembled the projectors for production and did limited systems integration. I was never able to positively confirm this though. Now, I'm wondering if they have a quality video engineering and troubleshooting capability here in the US or abroad to handle this problem. I also wonder who the third parties were that have actually built the components. The answer to these two questions will dictate how quickly Marantz comes up with a fix to the problem and whether that fix will cost you money to repair. It is a good projector and it would be a shame for a "small" problem with some internal systems to reduce its sales.
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post #16 of 163 Old 04-17-2002, 02:15 AM
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Quote:
Marantz as a company has made very clear their position, and it is not good.
Excuse me?

Unfortunately, with my travel schedule, I don't get to read this every day.

However, I have reported on various other threads that I have made Japan aware of these issues as they come up and as a result, the chief engineer of the PJ project is flying here to spend a week with us, and particularly me. Why anyone would be so ignorant as to think that we (or anyone else with integrity for that matter) would just pass a product with known faults off on an unknowing public is just stupid.

The reason all of the returned product is going back to Japan is to improve the QC and to discover what, if anything, is happening to these things...

Unfortunately the mob mentality on these forums often takes over, and there's not much that I, or any one person can do to stop it.

Remember all of you with units purchased from authorized dealers. You have a 3 year warranty. If the issues that you are seeing are even remotely livable, then hang with it until we get out of our backorder crunch. We want great product as much if not more that any of you...

Dan

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post #17 of 163 Old 04-17-2002, 02:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by David Guill
A little thought popped into my head. Several weeks ago a merger with Denon and Marantz was announced. The announcement made it seem that the Denon expertise with audio and the Marantz expertise with video was match made in heaven. The funny thing was that I always liked the Marantz Audio and never thought much of the few dabbles then did with video {display} devices. A summary of my comments were, I think this was a merger for cash. Quite possibly Marantz and Denon thought that they had a cash cow with this Marantz DLP projector (compared to retail pricing from Japan, their margins from US sales appear to be phenomonal). Anyway, I thought they only assembled the projectors for production and did limited systems integration. I was never able to positively confirm this though. Now, I'm wondering if they have a quality video engineering and troubleshooting capability here in the US or abroad to handle this problem. I also wonder who the third parties were that have actually built the components. The answer to these two questions will dictate how quickly Marantz comes up with a fix to the problem and whether that fix will cost you money to repair. It is a good projector and it would be a shame for a "small" problem with some internal systems to reduce its sales.
I totally agree with what David said. The previous Marantz projectors are nothing but mediocre. This new projector is good yet with lots of problem, but I don't think they have good engineers with expertise in video. It is good because each part (DMD chip, DCDi chip) they used is good. After all, they only produce few projectors (models) and their experience is lagging far behind those big manufacturers IMO.

I however always love (and still own) their audio products.

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post #18 of 163 Old 04-17-2002, 05:25 AM
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whoa dan. easy cougar. we want and welcome your help. please don't let a few blockheads dissuade you.
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post #19 of 163 Old 04-17-2002, 05:29 AM
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As far as Marantz USA only being concerned about units bought from authorized dealers in the USA. I feel that they are doing themselves and their customers a disservice, the bigger a data base the more likely that problems can be resolved, by ignoring the imported units Marantz USA is limiting their data base. When a coach prepares his team to play in the Superbowl, do you think he limits his preparation for the BIG GAME by looking at film of the opposing teams HOME games or does he look at film of ALL the opposing team games?

Just a thought, just a thought
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post #20 of 163 Old 04-17-2002, 05:34 AM
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I am days from taking delivery of the Marantz projector so I want it to work properly as much as anyone. I have watched the posts develop on the Marantz problems and truly sympathize with mbw23air and MichaelZ (and others) who have had non-trivial problems. But sometimes this forum turns ugly with speculation that is simply uncalled for. A few people have posted that Marantz will likely work these bugs out over time and that the PJ can hopefully be repaired at some stage and this makes sense to me also. Aside from the flicker issue, I have yet to see massive QC issues relative to the other projectors based on other posts to this forum. I say we should keep the mud from slinging until Marantz can react, and from Dan's last post it seems to me that they are making an effort.

Maybe I'll feel different next week, but I doubt it.

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post #21 of 163 Old 04-17-2002, 06:03 AM
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Mr Miller ;will the European models affected by these problems?
many future European purchasers raise questions with the marantz ...
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post #22 of 163 Old 04-17-2002, 06:24 AM
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"mob mentality". Hm.

Everyone knows that we are the first to speak out in support of good product. And of course to warn others of problems. That's the nature of a forum: helping others.

As far as I can ascertain, there are about 7 of us here on AVS who have bought the VP12S1. And only one or two are not complaining.

To characterise this as a 'mob mentality' implies that we are an unthinking pack 'caught up in the rush' of something bigger than us that we don't understand. Marantz acts like Japanese purchasers are criminals who bought their machine from a fence in the back alley, stolen from the company.

Some feel that the best way is to kowtow to Marantz, to not discourage them from improving ther product. This never works.

I think it's a continuation of the condescending attitude we've seen, to denigrate and marginalize video customers after the sale. So come down off your high horse Your Majesty.

Judge for yourselves people.
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post #23 of 163 Old 04-17-2002, 06:35 AM
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Gord B,

Well said.

Here's what I would add:

Given the monumental ignorance about manufacturing and development, and the immature rush-to-judgment, on rude display here, it's a wonder any manufacturer's representative participates in these dialogs at all.

Let's be real. This Marantz unit sets an utterly new standard among affordable DLP projectors! But it's very, very early in its production run, and some owners are experiencing a minor, but admittedly annoying problem that will surely be worked out. The fact is early adopters take a chance with any new product in any industry. They have to accept that there may be a problem or two. But, geez, give the manufacturer a chance to correct the problem for heaven's sake before self-righteously impugning their motives and competence.

So, a little perspective here please, not to mention the most minimal level of courtesy for Dan...AND Marantz. That is the least we (mostly) knowledgeable AVS Forum members must do.
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post #24 of 163 Old 04-17-2002, 07:02 AM
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PF, your statements completely overlook the need to calibrate this projector's pixel clock, and the fact that we have been mislead about its existence, and indeed the very existence of the Sevice Menu. I have a very angry customer I'm trying to hold the lid over for this.

There is no good reason for hiding this information.

Get us the Service Menu and I, for one, will shut up.
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post #25 of 163 Old 04-17-2002, 07:19 AM
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Misled?

When exactly did Marantz lie to us about the existence of the service menu? Come on. Who on this hobbyist Forum doesn't already KNOW that service menus exist, anyway?

More importantly, since when does a manufacturer have a duty to inform Forum members about how to get into the service menu? I'd be seriously reluctant to do that if I were Marantz, too...as is Sony, as is Sharp, as is JVC, as is Dwin, as is Panasonic...well, you get the idea.
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post #26 of 163 Old 04-17-2002, 07:35 AM
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Gord,

You have to keep in mind that there are well over 40 of us who have reported owning Marantz projectors just on this forum. The number of folks reporting problems is still small as a %. It isn't nearly the majority as some have suggested.

Marantz has certainly been more attentive to our issues than Sharp or any other manufacturer I can think of. While they haven't yet solved them at least they have undertaken an investigation. Compare that to the BS folks got from Sharp on the processor bypass or "what lip synch" problems. The only real issues we have with Marantz is the Marantz US refusal to honor the world wide warranty and their not yet having US repair centers for projectors. And that's not Dan Miller's decision, it's at a lot higher pay grade.
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post #27 of 163 Old 04-17-2002, 07:47 AM
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Fellow forum members,

For what it's worth, here's my take on the whole thing.

I have a VP-12S1 and couldn't be happier with it. Is it perfect? No. But, it's nipping at 100%, in my opinion.

The problem I have regarding the criticism posted on this thread is that apparently, everyone forgot that there is not a perfect projector in existence. That being said, I think everyone should calm down and wait for an "official" response to what most Marantz owners are experiencing.

Please read, "official". What is meant by this, to clarify further, is that Mr. Dan Miller of Marantz is actively watching this forum, and particularly, this thread and others regarding real and perceived issues with their projector. What he has clearly stated is that they care about these issues and are in the process of identifying them. Once a solution is attained, they will make everyone aware of it.

I would like to remind all of you that Dan could have easily pulled the old ostrich trick (hid his head in the sand) and disappeared from this forum altogether. It is not mandatory that he post here. In fact, there are very few manufacturers that give us the time of day when things are okay. Dan is still facing the issues here at this crucifixion party certain members are throwing in his honor.

In closing, big companies cannot snap their fingers and come up with a solution instantaneously. These things, by the nature of their complexities, take time.

That's my $0.02!


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post #28 of 163 Old 04-17-2002, 07:57 AM
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Agreed.
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post #29 of 163 Old 04-17-2002, 08:13 AM
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It strikes me that one other thing that's being shown up in this thread is that most of us way underestimate the risk that we take in buying expensive toys from sources we don't know, either by mail or over the internet. Especially on new products that don't yet have much of a track record. Taking a risk on a $400 DVD player is different from a $10,000 projector. I don't mean this to be another B&M vs web dealers as I regard some non-local dealers like AVS, Galen Carol and Audio Nut to be even more knowledgeable and reliable than 90% of the B&M sources I've known.

I can understand why someone like anon coward would be panicked. I wonder if his customer was told:
That he was turned down as a Marantz dealer
That the projector he was sold was without US warranty coverage
That as a non Marantz dealer his source wouldn't be eligable for Marantz training
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post #30 of 163 Old 04-17-2002, 09:00 AM
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I understood my risk buying from overseas but a company still needs to fix problems regardless of where a unit is purchased. It is one thing for a $2000-$3000 pj to flicker, not sync on vga signals, wavy lines, etc. vs. a pj one pays US list $12900! If you pay for a more expensive pj you would expect less problems, period. If Marantz wants to sell this unit for $3000 then there would be less bitching and moaning. I would be quite furious to have paid the US prices and now a $525 bulb after 80 hours. The bulb warranty is the same globally. I bought and paid for a pj that is currently not working along with others here who have units not working - regardless of where purchased - and for the money spent, we have a right and an obligation to warn other future purchasers of the flaws that we are finding. Maybe if the demand drops then Marantz would have no "back order" problems and some of the issued can be addressed.
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