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Discussion Starter #1
I received this email today. I understand why a company who is already under heavy demand from its local market might do this and I am not critical of this. Its simply unfortunate for those of us in Canada who are limited in our acess to great products.


Epik won't ship here for now,HSU requires the customer to ship the product back across border at theor cost for service ..kudos to the Canadian companies or others who have Canada based dealers like SVS.

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We have stopped shipping to Canada for the time being, as we are having trouble with brokerage fees and warranty concerns.


We hope to ship to Canada again soon, but not at this time.


We apologize for this and, again, we hope to begin shipping to our Canadian neighbors again soon!


Thanks again for your interest in Epik.


All the best,


xxxxx
[email protected]
 

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Well the packaging on my Epik sub left a lot of room for failure in terms of damage. It looks to be in perfect shape, but only the corners had foam around the outsides. I assume that the warranty concerns they're talking about refer to shipping damages that they've had.


In my opinion something that weighs 130 lbs should be padded all around not just at the top, bottom, and corners. All 4 sides were nearly completely exposed and had about 2 inches of clearance all the way around.


Too bad you guys can't get them in Canada as Epik manufacturers a superb product for the money.
 

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One thing about padding, shipping companies will specifically state NOT to do that. Having an open space between the outer shipping carton and the actual item itself creates a buffer. If you have something solid there, any force applied to the outer packaging would be transmitted into the subwoofer enclosure.


If something is going to plunge 3" into the packaging, the sub is going to get messed up no matter what's in there. If the box was to take a hard knock on the edge, it wouldn't impact the speaker at all if there wasn't something to couple it to the box.


From a shipping company perspective, floating subwoofer inside packaging with large foam corners = ideal.
 

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The issue is support. Without a dealer network that can field CS and replacement issues there are a ton of drawbacks for the manufacturer. Canada, being a close neighbor has less than most, but it's still harder to support and eats into already slim margins.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Schempp /forum/post/14312334


One thing about padding, shipping companies will specifically state NOT to do that. Having an open space between the outer shipping carton and the actual item itself creates a buffer. If you have something solid there, any force applied to the outer packaging would be transmitted into the subwoofer enclosure.


If something is going to plunge 3" into the packaging, the sub is going to get messed up no matter what's in there. If the box was to take a hard knock on the edge, it wouldn't impact the speaker at all if there wasn't something to couple it to the box.


From a shipping company perspective, floating subwoofer inside packaging with large foam corners = ideal.

Be that as it may I felt that the packaging was less than ideal. It got here fine though so it got the job done



I resell computers and servers for a living and I would suspect that servers and computers are slightly more sensitive to damage from vibrations than a subwoofer, but who knows. Servers and computers are generally much better packaged than the Epik subwoofer I received. I'm honestly not complaining because it got here in one piece, but everyone has room for improvement right?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toolatecrew /forum/post/14311978


Its simply unfortunate for those of us in Canada who are limited in our acess to great products.

So why don't you just have it shipped to Calais or Houlton ME and pick it up??!! Sounds like a great excuse for a day trip!
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by thirdeye11 /forum/post/14312568


Be that as it may I felt that the packaging was less than ideal. It got here fine though so it got the job done



I resell computers and servers for a living and I would suspect that servers and computers are slightly more sensitive to damage from vibrations than a subwoofer, but who knows. Servers and computers are generally much better packaged than the Epik subwoofer I received. I'm honestly not complaining because it got here in one piece, but everyone has room for improvement right?

Totally understandable.


I too would definitely imagine that a computer is easier to break than a sub.
 

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Discussion Starter #8

Quote:
Originally Posted by cavu /forum/post/14312601


So why don't you just have it shipped to Calais or Houlton ME and pick it up??!! Sounds like a great excuse for a day trip!


Daytrip? 12 hours roundtrip is hardley a daytrip. Not to mention the $200 in Gas. Epik makes good subs but not THAT good for the price.


I was also guessing that warranty concerns meant after sales warranty as in what to do with the sub if it breaks. Shipping one or even part of one over the boarder and back isn't the easiest/cheapest thing in the world.


IF I lived on the border maybe but for me it would have to be practically free to make it worth my while
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toolatecrew /forum/post/14313074


Daytrip? 12 hours roundtrip is hardley a daytrip.

Fair enough.


My border point is less than an hour away and I use it for everything that offers "free" shipping in the US or to take advantage of traveller exemptions when we spend a few days down there.


My son and I brought back $1500 worth of LG LCD TV and LG dishwasher under our exemptions when we went to Clapton's Crossroads Guitar Festival in Chicago. We paid no GST, PST or brokerage or freight charges whatsoever on top of the huge savings due to the collapsed US dollar. Saved almost $1300 total!
 

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Actually, most of the time, the customer would not have to ship the entire subwoofer back for warranty (or out-of-warranty) service. Rather, more likely is that just the amplifier would need to be shipped back, which is quite light and not very expensive to ship on it's own.


Having a dealer is convenient, but there is no way that repairs can be done by the dealer. Also, having a dealer means that there is a middle man involved, which means markup on the price of the sub. All in all not necessarily a bad thing, but not without drawbacks either.


Note that we have shipped lots of subs to Canada purely factory direct from our facility here in So. Cal., and as far as I know these people are quite happy. We inspect each and every subwoofer and speaker before shipping it out internationally.
 

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Discussion Starter #11

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Originally Posted by Pete_Hsu /forum/post/14314512


Actually, most of the time, the customer would not have to ship the entire subwoofer back for warranty (or out-of-warranty) service. Rather, more likely is that just the amplifier would need to be shipped back, which is quite light and not very expensive to ship on it's own.


Having a dealer is convenient, but there is no way that repairs can be done by the dealer. Also, having a dealer means that there is a middle man involved, which means markup on the price of the sub. All in all not necessarily a bad thing, but not without drawbacks either.


Note that we have shipped lots of subs to Canada purely factory direct from our facility here in So. Cal., and as far as I know these people are quite happy. We inspect each and every subwoofer and speaker before shipping it out internationally.

I'm sure its a good product and I'm glad many people are happy.


BUT even if most of the time the whole sub doesn't need to be shipped back HSU has explicity stated their policy is and I quote "Customer is responsible for International shipping for warranty service."


So if someone has a warranty problem ..a factory defect they must PAY to have it shipped inspected and repaired and replaced. It might not be the norm but if entire sub DID need to be shipped back that could easily run into 100s of dollars for a warranty repair.


Its understandable why this would be the poicy in a small Canadian market but its a legit concern. It already 300-400 to the price of an HSU for shipping and duty to Canada. Plus the potential cost if you have a warranty repair.


I understand its a business decsion but the markup imposed by dealers of some other US based sub suppliers is on the order of 6% or 100 on a 1500 sub. Its still much cheaper for Canadians to pay $100 "middleman" markup, pay 115 for shipping and no duty etc than it is to pay 300-400 for shipping and duty. It really doesn't make it more expensive especially with todays exchange rates.


Its certainly understandable given the large heavy size of subs and the costs and insurance etc of cross border shipping that a dealer in Canada that can bring them across in bulk cheaply.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toolatecrew /forum/post/14311978


HSU requires the customer to ship the product back across border at theor cost for service ..kudos to the Canadian companies or others who have Canada based dealers like SVS.

As I said elsewhere, I was ready to order the new ULS15 but now I've decided against it unless Hsu gets a more Canadian friendly after sales support policy. So it's either SVS or a B&M brand for my next sub. Dealing with returning/replacing things under warranty over the border (especially heavy things) is way too much of a pain. 4 times out of 5 they end up wanting to charge me duties/taxes/fees for the warranty replacement on the way back (despite assurances that I do not have to pay anything from the shipper). This means that I do not want to buy from companies which makes me deal with replacement costs across the border. The long shipping times, cross border fees, high shipping costs, and general headache that comes from after sales service makes it not worth it in my book. Last time I had to get a speaker replaced under warranty, I just drove down to my B&M store and the salesguy just gave me a brand new speaker, the total downtime was only 1 hour.


I own a SB12, but I really want a high end sealed sub like the ULS15 for my next sub, but I'm willing to wait until SVS comes out with one or I can a good deal on a Velo or Paradigm Servo.
 

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Is it legal to cross the border to buy slightly used speakers on the US side and transport them to Canada without paying custom or other tax? If you still have to pay that tax, will that be at the same tax rate? Those factory refurbished or demo speakers may qualify for these.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1stHD /forum/post/14317245


Is it legal to cross the border to buy slightly used speakers on the US side and transport them to Canada without paying custom or other tax? If you still have to pay that tax, will that be at the same tax rate? Those factory refurbished or demo speakers may qualify for these.

If you buy a product in person it doesn't matter where you live you still have to pay taxes on it so of course it is the same tax rate.


As far as customs or other tax I think that Canadians have a yearly exemptions up to a certain dollar amount to bring US products across the border and not pay a penalty. Best to check with customs.


-Chad
 

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Discussion Starter #15

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Originally Posted by warpdrive /forum/post/14316298


As I said elsewhere, I was ready to order the new ULS15 but now I've decided against it unless Hsu gets a more Canadian friendly after sales support policy. So it's either SVS or a B&M brand for my next sub. Dealing with returning/replacing things under warranty over the border (especially heavy things) is way too much of a pain. 4 times out of 5 they end up wanting to charge me duties/taxes/fees for the warranty replacement on the way back (despite assurances that I do not have to pay anything from the shipper). This means that I do not want to buy from companies which makes me deal with replacement costs across the border. The long shipping times, cross border fees, high shipping costs, and general headache that comes from after sales service makes it not worth it in my book. Last time I had to get a speaker replaced under warranty, I just drove down to my B&M store and the salesguy just gave me a brand new speaker, the total downtime was only 1 hour.


I own a SB12, but I really want a high end sealed sub like the ULS15 for my next sub, but I'm willing to wait until SVS comes out with one or I can a good deal on a Velo or Paradigm Servo.

PM sent
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toolatecrew /forum/post/14315238


I'm sure its a good product and I'm glad many people are happy.


BUT even if most of the time the whole sub doesn't need to be shipped back HSU has explicity stated their policy is and I quote "Customer is responsible for International shipping for warranty service."


So if someone has a warranty problem ..a factory defect they must PAY to have it shipped inspected and repaired and replaced. It might not be the norm but if entire sub DID need to be shipped back that could easily run into 100s of dollars for a warranty repair.

Actually that is not correct. "100's of dollars" to ship an amp from Canada to So. Cal? No way. These amps are very light (just a few pounds), so to and from shipping is probably only about $60 for Canada.

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Its still much cheaper for Canadians to pay $100 "middleman" markup, pay 115 for shipping and no duty etc than it is to pay 300-400 for shipping and duty. It really doesn't make it more expensive especially with todays exchange rates.

Again, unrealistic. $100 middleman markup? Most of the time, dealer markup will be 50-100% (although not always that high). And $300-$400 charge for shipping/tax/duty when sending factory direct is not really correct either. For instance, the full shipping/taxes/duties/fees for a VTF-2 MK3 to a place like Alberta is $180 (and even less for the lower cost models).
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by warpdrive /forum/post/14316298


Dealing with returning/replacing things under warranty over the border (especially heavy things) is way too much of a pain.

I can't imagine why anyone would need to return the entire subwoofer for warranty service unless under very unusual circumstances (such as a problem with the enclosure when they receive the unit, which we would replace at our cost anyway). 99% of the time, it would just be the small and light amplifier that would need to be returned. This is very easy to remove and disconnect in the ULS model.


I haven't heard from any of our Canadian customers that they needed to pay extra fees when we sent amps back after repairing them.


I might throw around the idea at the office of at least paying for return shipping for Canadian customers who are under warranty. Then, all they would need to do is send the amp to us, and we would repair it and ship it back at our cost. That is essentially what customers in the USA have to do too, it's a pretty straightforward process.
 

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Discussion Starter #18

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete_Hsu /forum/post/14318064


Actually that is not correct. "100's of dollars" to ship an amp from Canada to So. Cal? No way. These amps are very light (just a few pounds), so to and from shipping is probably only about $60 for Canada (we use USPS to ship amps back, as it is the most economical way to do it with a small and light item).




Again, unrealistic. $100 middleman markup? Most of the time, dealer markup will be 50-100% (although not always that high). And $300-$400 charge for shipping and duty is not correct either. For instance, the full shipping/taxes/duties/fees for a VTF-2 MK3 to a place like Alberta is $180.

I was hoping to keep this general but unfortunatley you've "called me out" as being incorrect.


I never said it would cost $100s of dollars to ship and amp. Its not an incorrect statement becuase I never made it.


My point still stands that as it is today if you have an issue with an HSU sub reagrdless of what it is you must pay extar to have a warranty repair that would be FREE from a company that has a Canadian based dealer. That is not a positive. It might be less of a concern to some people but its a factor for me and others.

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It might not be the norm but if entire sub DID need to be shipped back that could easily run into 100s of dollars for a warranty repair.

I don't care who you use shipping an entire Sub back from where I live to So Cali will cost $100s


$100 middleman markup?


SVS PB 13 Ulta SVS website price $1599 US

SVS PB 13 Ultra from Sonicboom Audio in Canada (after Middle man markup) $1699 Can


Last time I checked 1699-1599 is $100.


The information I provided is 100% correct.


My shipping/duty cost of $300 to $400 is not correct? Funny since this is copied and pasted diretctly from the Email from HSU I recived regarding a shipping quote to my home in Nova Scotia Canada..

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Shipping is by FedEx Ground

The following estimate includes shipping, customs and duties, and any broker's fees that may be applicable. This does not include the price of the unit.


VTF3-MK3 $382.36

VTF3-HO $442.08

I based my stament on information directly from HSU if the ionformation is incorrect it becuase HSU provided me incorrect information.



I posted information on why I made my decsion. Its 100% accurate and to tell others it is not simply becuase it reflects unfavorably on the impression you wish to present is misleading.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toolatecrew /forum/post/14318194


I was hoping to keep this general but unfortunatley you've "called me out" as being incorrect.


I never said it would cost $100s of dollars to ship and amp. Its not an incorrect statement becuase I never made it.

Sorry, I misread that. You didn't say it would cost 100's of dollars for sending back an amp. I suppose the way I would respond to your original statement is that I can't imagine why anyone would need to return the entire subwoofer for warranty service unless under very unusual circumstances (such as a problem with the enclosure when they receive the unit, which we would replace at our cost anyway).


Quote:
My shipping/duty cost of $300 to $400 is not correct? Funny since this is copied and pasted diretctly from the Email from HSU I recived regarding a shipping quote to my home in Nova Scotia Canada..

Nova Scotia happens to be the most expensive place for us to ship subwoofers in Canada. Even there, it costs slightly above $250 to ship VTF-2 MK3. To other places such as Alberta or Ontario or Quebec, shipping and/or taxes are substantially less. For instance, a VTF-3 MK3 shipped to Alberta is more than $100 cheaper than to Nova Scotia. My point is that $300-$400 is not the norm for most of our products shipped to Canada. And there is not a single place in Canada where it costs more than ~$250 to ship a VTF-2 MK3 or smaller model.


I have no idea why things are more expensive to N.S. (maybe it is much farther away from So. Cal, or has much less volume of goods moving through there than other provinces), but to other parts of Canada the shipping costs are not too bad at all in my humble opinion.


Anyway, as a small company, we are just trying our best. For international customers, we inspect each and every unit that gets sent out. We provide good pre and post sales support via email, phone, or website forum. We help with placement and setup before and after delivery. We repair and replace amps and other items here too.
 

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Quote:
Actually that is not correct. "100's of dollars" to ship an amp from Canada to So. Cal? No way. These amps are very light (just a few pounds), so to and from shipping is probably only about $60 for Canada (we use USPS to ship amps back, as it is the most economical way to do it with a small and light item).

There is no way I would have taken the lucky dip of buying my $1700 PB13U without the safety of local support. I had two amps that proved faulty,these where fully covered under SonicBooms warranty. I never had to call,deal,ship with SVS in the USA.
Quote:
Again, unrealistic. $100 middleman markup? Most of the time, dealer markup will be 50-100% (although not always that high). And $300-$400 charge for shipping and duty is not correct either. For instance, the full shipping/taxes/duties/fees for a VTF-2 MK3 to a place like Alberta is $180.

Thats not true. When Hsu had a Canadian outlet I locally purchased a VTF-3MK2 for cheaper than Hsu can deliver me the cheaper similar VTF-2MK3. Yet I also had a local service center for warranty issues. I can vouch that the VTF3 was a good sub, but quite simply its not viable for anyone out of the US. If you want a good US mail order sub in Canada the SVS with its local outlet is a far better option.The girl at Hsu admitted that I would be better off getting a locally available sub because its not worth the drama for Hsu to ship out of the US as its too small a market.I only got rid of the Hsu because of no parts/service supply in Canada which is far too much risk for me.


Like all Canadians I would love to try a ULS15 but not if I am forced to deal with the added costs,drama of no local support.


John
 
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