Report: #1028365

Complaint Review: Sony USA

  • Submitted: Wed, March 13, 2013
  • Updated: Wed, March 13, 2013
  • Reported By: Lee — Daytona Beach Florida USA
  • Sony USA
    10227 Crossroads Loop, Suite C
    United States of America

Sony USA Sony Customer Satisfaction Center Laredo SONY REPAIRS BOTCHED vs. "Sony Pledge of Quality" Responsiveness and Customer Service Internet

*REBUTTAL Owner of company: Same Song, Second Verse

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To Sony Repair Center, Laredo, Tx. 
Referencing: E56593197
Work Order: 301253745
Dear Sirs,
I sent my CDR HCD-GTZi stereo component system (Manufactured in January 2011) to you (Sony Repair Center) for repair, carefully boxed and in like-new condition, working perfectly except for the Play from Flash Drive function which was freezing-up after some minutes of play.  Your representatives stated that it had arrived "Safely".  At no time was there ever any mention by Sony Repair either in/by email, or during any of the several calls I made to your Service Center, of any external damage to the unit, only of some non-described "internal damage".  You refused to service it stating that it was too old and that there was no way you could repair the unit due to its age (two years old).  Then, you sent it back to me totally inoperable and badly damaged.  I received it back with all of its 5 speaker grills crushed (due to poor packaging), the side panels marred and scratched from the components rubbing each other during shipment (or while at your Repair Center) and the unit will not turn-on when the Power Button is pressed and/or by using the Remote Control.  It will not turn-on at all.
This does not suffice as Service.
I declined your service departments offer to Purchase the LBTZX66i you offered me when you refused to repair my unit, and requested that my unit just be returned to me in the same condition it was in when I sent it to you.  I then fully expected to have the unit returned to me in the same condition that it was in when I sent it to you.  Working perfectly except for the Play from Flash Drive function and in like-new condition otherwise.  Not destroyed and inoperable.
This is an excerpt from one of my emails to you and contained within the email string that follows: 
I do not want a replacement LBTZX66i at any cost. I only want my HCD-GTZi unit repaired as the Sony Representative had promised.  The Sony Representatives also stated that Sony would pay all shipping and pay you (Sony Repair Center) any amount over the $129.00 Flat Rate charge to me for the repairs (if completed).  If you think this agreement with them is inadequate and/or if you feel that making a repair to a simple PC Board is beyond the scope of your abilities or knowledge, or that you are just inadequate to the job, just send the unit back to me working the way it was (perfectly, except for the FLASH DRIVE play function)."
Your packaging for the return shipment was very inadequate and improperly done.  There was only one layer of bubblewrap below the units in the shipping carton, although there was 5 of it on top of the components (backwards from what I would suspect to be the norm).  The wooden back of each component was very well padded by several layers of bubblewrap (3-4 thick) but each component was only wrapped with one layer of bubblewrap and they were crammed in side-by-side where they could only rub against each other side-to-side tearing the bubblewrap off during shipment.  On the front side of the speakers there were only 2 layers of bubblewrap between the speaker grills and the shipping carton (one layer wrapped around the speaker and one flat layer placed between the speakers and the carton wall).  Any lateral force on the shipping carton on the side where the speaker grills were exposed to the carton wall would result in damage to those grills, and did.
As for the unit now being unable to Power-Up, that could only be the result of the Service Tech.  It is either the result of the internal components (removed for servicing or inspection) not being re-installed correctly, or just sabotage because I declined to BUY the new and lesser unit that was offered to me in place of, and because of, your refusal to repair mine.  In any case, once again, this does not suffice as Service and is intolerable.
Attached are some of the pictures I took of the unit and shipping carton as I unpacked it.  The damage is obvious.  The first pictures were taken with flash and not as clear due to the Flash Effect; however the next grouping were much clearer due to the angle of the sun coming through the windows and reflecting off of the grills and my not having to use the flash.
I expect full remuneration for the damages caused to this CDR HCD-GTZi either directly or indirectly by your personnel due to their lack of professionalism in handling, servicing and shipping the unit.
Please get back to me in a timely fashion with how and when you are going to rectify this situation.
Lee Brown

Below is the letter I sent enclosed in the shipping carton along with the CDR HCD-GTZi when I sent it to you.
Ref. #E56593197
Work Order #301253745
Lee Brown
Sony CDR
Dear Sirs,
This unit works perfectly (as far as I can ascertain) except for the Play Music from Flash Drives function.
The MP3 Play from the Flash Drive started (at first) to play all of the songs on the Drive perfectly (these same drives I have included in this Shipping Carton).  Then, after a couple of months or so it began playing only 15-20 songs and then it would loop and play the same songs over and over until I pressed the FF button several times, then, after playing the newly selected songs it would once again loop and play the new batch of 15-20 songs over and over.  And then, after a while (an hour or less), play would stop, and the unit would have to be cycled OFF to ON in order to resume Play.  Now, when Play from Flash Drive(s) begins, the play Freezes within 1-3 minutes and no sound comes out of the speakers and the MP3 Play seems to completely freeze-up, also.  Cycling the Unit from Off to On will restart Play but the Unit will Re-Freeze and Play will stop after a minute or so. 
The Unit is used in my Office and NEVER played at a High Volume (above 10 on the meter and generally at 5-6).  It is just used for background music while we are working.
If I had to guess as to the problem with the Unit I would probably blame it on a defective component on the MP3 Logic Board (or whatever circuits control and read the Flash Drives) that fails when or as it gets heated-up.  The Freezing problem started occurring just a couple of months ago and has gotten gradually got worse until the Unit now Freezes after only a minute or so of MP3 Play.
If you have any problems understanding what I have written here, please, do not hesitate to call me.  I would be happy to walk you through it.
Thanks a bunch,
Lee Brown
Sony email string follows:

Your Event Id:


Work Order #:


Your Model:


Serial #:


Purchase Date:


Hello Lee,

Just dropping you a line to say we received your product. Not to worry, its safe and secure here at the Customer Satisfaction Center in Laredo,TX.

Were committed to making you happy, and we have an amazing team repairing your Sony item. Your work order number and our contact info is included in this email.

You can also use our Service Website for updates on your issue. Please use your work order number as a reference.
Sony Service

Sony Service Contact Information:

Phone number:


Hours of Operation:

8:00AM-5:30PM CST M-F


Web Site

Dear  Lee Brown
Please give us a call  regarding the  HCDGTZ4I that you sent for repair, unfortunately we cannot repair the unit  but we offer a replacement  instead the repair ,the model is a LBTZX66I  for 291.20 ,please call us back the number below or reply this email with your answer ,we need your approval to proceed.
Laredo Customer Satisfaction Center
Leonardo Flores
Sr. Specialist Technical Support
Phone (866) 357-6230 ext.0849
Fax (956) 728-2132
Jorge Alberto Ramos Ruiz|VAIOCustomer Service Rep.|SONY Laredo Customer Satisfaction Center|Phone (866) 357-6230 Fax (956) 728-2132|

Sent from my Android phone with Mail. Please excuse my brevity.
Lee Brown <> wrote:
----- Original Message -----
From: Lee Brown
Sent: 02/27/13 05:11 PM
Subject: Fwd: Re: SONY repair center Notification # 301253745

Sent from my Android phone with Mail. Please excuse my brevity.
Lee Brown <> wrote:
Sorry Leonardo, my phone sent this email BEFORE it was completed.  I have finished editing it and this is the corrected version:
Hello Leonardo,

I am sending you this reply from my cellphone as my computer is having a hard drive replaced with a larger capacity 2TB drive and I can not email from it at this time.

I have been told that the HCD-GTZi stereo that I sent to you for repair has some kind of "internal damage"?! What kind of internal damage I am not sure of at this point. The pictures that were sent to me have no descriptions included with them. One of the pictures seems to be of a bad solder point that has solder resin splashed around it (like a poor job of soldering) and it also has two holes drilled in the circuit board as though someone was inspecting the solder connection (these holes should in no way affect the solder connection as they are not at the point where the ic is soldered to the circuit). The other pictures are basically to black and too dark to get any definition out of, although they may be of some sort of brackets. I am not sure.
In any case, whatever they are, and whatever the damage is, it would have to have occurred during manufacturing or at your location as the unit has never been opened except by Sony repair (you?) there In Laredo.

I purchased the unit about a year ago and it sat in my office on top of a bookshelf for 7-8 months before I even set it up. After being set-up I used it for background music at low 4-7 volume setting playing mp3's off of two flash drives while we worked.  It worked/played just fine for a couple of months and then began to loop the playing songs, generally in groups of 15-20 songs, and just kept playing them over and over again until I hit the FF button several times wherein it would play a new group of songs and once again loop that group after 10-15 minutes of play time.  Finally, after a month or so, it began "freezing-up" after only a few minutes of play and would no longer respond to FF or any other function and had to be unplugged and re-started in order to begin play again.  Now it will generally not even finish playing 2-3 songs before it locks-up (freezes).
The Radio and CD Player continue to work perfectly.  Just the "PLAY from FLASHDRIVE" function is malfunctioning.
I am a Laser Engineer and if I had to guess the cause of the malfunction I would say that one or two of the capacitors or ic's on the Logic Board (or whatever board that controls the USB Ports) is heating up after some minutes of play and either open circuiting or creating too much resistance and disrupting current flow through the board/circuit.  To my way of thinking, any tech worth his salt should be able to "read" the pc board, test voltages, etc. and replace the defective components and, in so doing, repair the device.  It is not Rocket Science.
Blaming me for holes drilled into a circuit board or for any other internal damage is ludicrous and an assault on my intelligence.  That Unit has NEVER been opened by anyone since the day of its manufacture; That is, not until it was opened there at your repair facility.  Further, it was manufactured in China or wherever and was designed to be shipped to any point in the World, AND, TO WORK WHEN IT REACHED ITS FINAL DESTINATION.  Light-weight circuit boards do not tear themselves apart during shipping nor do holes in circuit boards contained within a sealed enclosure miraculously appear out of nowhere.
I purchased this >$600.00 stereo primarily for its ability to play music from Flash Drives.  The Unit you are offering me in lieu of your actually repairing my stereo (at an additional $291.20 expense to me) is an iPod Dock and has no Flash Drive Play function and is a much lesser component system (it costs half as much, <$260.00 wholesale) than the one I have and it has no Sub Woofer and no USB functions.  Why would I ever want to "Trade-Down"?
I do not want a replacement LBTZX66i at any cost. I only want my HCD-GTZi unit repaired as the Sony Representative had promised.  The Sony Representatives also stated that Sony would pay all shipping and pay you (Sony Repair Center) any amount over the $129.00 Flat Rate charge to me for the repairs (if completed).  If you think this agreement with them is inadequate and/or if you feel that making a repair to a simple PC Board is beyond the scope of your abilities or knowledge, or that you are just inadequate to the job, just send the unit back to me working the way it was (perfectly, except for the FLASH DRIVE play function).
I have spent 15-20 hours on the phone, internet and emailing back and forth with Sony and its Reps trying to resolve this problem.  No one associated with Sony Customer Service or Sony Repair Center seems to have the snap to take it upon themselves to care about Sony's reputation and/or its customer service promise. All anyone there can do is argue the pettiest of arguments and blame me for something over which I have never had control, i.e. holes in a circuit board and some black things on a picture.
If I receive the Unit back unrepaired I will send this email to every Sony complaint Site I can find and Post this email and its Strings on every Blog Site I can find.  I will spend 2 hours every week for one year to accomplish this goal.  This in no way should be construed as a threat, but, it is a promise.
Lee Brown 
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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 03/13/2013 07:04 PM and is a permanent record located here: The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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Updates & Rebuttals


#1 REBUTTAL Owner of company

Same Song, Second Verse

AUTHOR: LiteJazz - ()

Hi Lee:

I have been fighting Sony since November 2013, exact problem, different item.  I sent the Laredo Texas facility my $5,000.00 SACD player, the SCD-1.  Like yours, they damaged it at the repair facility as well as packed it where it would be severely damaged, and it was.  Like you, they simply said my $5,000.00 player was too old, no one even looked at it, and since that time I have been dealing with the Office of the President, and they said if I woould pay them $900.00, they would ship me a Sony 5400 SACD player to replace my badly damaged unit, and like you, I wanted to know why they are wanting to charge me one penny, they did the damage!  

Sony will not be responsible when they damage something at the Laredo facility, and if you stay after them, you will get as far as National Customer Relations, and they BLOCK any and all corospondence you might send to any executive at Sony Corporation of America, they literally block everything.  We are not the only people this has happened to, I have read dozens of accounts of this repair facility doing damage, and no one is responsible.  They always want you to PAY for what they call an exchange.  I made it very clear, I am not exchanging anything, they damaged my product, and should be responsible for the damage, but they will not!  So, I certainly know what you are experiencing.

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