Other World Computing ... AWFUL.

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by MattG, Dec 16, 2008.

  1. MattG macrumors 68040


    May 27, 2003
    Asheville, NC
    Let me start out by saying that this is the second time I've (almost) been screwed by them, and that I should have learned my lesson the first time...I'm just interested to see if anyone else has had similar experiences with them.

    I ordered some RAM and a SuperDrive for an older PowerBook. I was very careful about making sure I picked the correct parts for my particular laptop (it was listed as compatible for both). I get it all, and to make a long story a little bit shorter, none of it works. The drive won't fit correctly, and all the computer will do is beep when I install the RAM. So, I fill out an RMA request on their web site, and they give me return information. In the RMA request, I'm very specific as to why I'm returning it, and that it's not because I don't want it, it's because what's listed on their site is not (and STILL is not) correct.

    Up until and including this point, I'm fine with it, whatever...doesn't work, they'll give me my money back, I'll order some place else, no big deal. A week or so later I check my credit card, and they've only applied a partial credit. I inquire as to why, and they explain that there's a restocking fee. I explain to them, once again, that I returned it because the descriptions on their web site are not accurate. So, once again, they apply another credit that I see a few days later. I take a look at it, and I'm STILL short $8. I contact them today to find out why and here's their response:

    You are missing $8.00 due to the price of the OWC Mercury SuperDrive dropping down to 89.99 from 97.99. Our prices are subjected to change on a daily basis. The refund amount is based on the current selling price on the day the refund was set up. If you go to our customer service page this is explained in the first paragraph.

    So I have to take an $8 hit because you dropped the price on something that I'm returning because you incorrectly listed it as working with my computer?!? I threatened to call Amex and they refunded the rest of it. I didn't even argue with them about the shipping charges; probably should have considering they sold me a bunch of stuff that wouldn't work.

    Sucky. I will not be ordering from them again, which is a shame because it really looks like they have a lot of cool stuff.
  2. Solemony macrumors 6502


    Nov 26, 2008
    That's awful. Thanks for reminding us...What a poor customer service they have..
  3. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

    Aug 13, 2006
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    Yeah... hundreds of people will vouch for OWC as being one of THE best resellers of Mac hardware out there.
  4. RainMeister macrumors member

    Sep 16, 2008
    Question: After almost getting screwed the first time, why did you go back to them again? I personally don't have the time nor the patience to give vendors a second chance.
  5. MattG thread starter macrumors 68040


    May 27, 2003
    Asheville, NC
    Because the first time was about 6 or 7 years ago. I figured I'd give them another chance.
  6. synth3tik macrumors 68040


    Oct 11, 2006
    Minneapolis, MN
    I have never had any issues with OWC. Now I have not ordered anything from them in almost a year. However I have ordered plenty of stuff from them and have always been happy with my experience.

    Sorry you have not had the same kind of luck.
  7. OttawaGuy macrumors 6502a


    Mar 28, 2006
  8. ra noodle Guest

    Mar 14, 2008

    this is what's so puzzling.....there are many others who have had a positive experience using OWC....i thought this would be a positive experience with my computer and i had a memory increase and no sooner was that done then apple doubled what memory their mbp's were offering and then larger memories came out and here i was with 100 and they had 250's etc....but i also increased my RAM from OWC....and they did all this to my MBP15.....and i didn't keep records but i had a small problem and brought it into the apple store and they of course solved the problem i had and then told me that the RAM i have is defective and may have damaged the computer....how nice to know, so i sent the RAM back to OWC-they have a lifetime guarantee right...and i was sent replacements....now i think my superdrive has crapped out, my Applecare is still good, and brought it into the applestore and i think they think this too and then they say to me...we think your RAM is bad also....and so now i am sitting here waiting and hoping that the replacement RAM that OWC sent me is not also bad again....once is accident...twice is deliberate-isn't that the logic? so i wait, and hope that the OWC replacement RAM they sent me wasn't also bad...i don't have a very good computer skill and so many of you have said OWC is tops and I read it all and then at some point i think ok maybe i will take the chance.....i do not have the skill level to do more than wipe off the keys and the rest of the computer, so i would not positively know a RAM i was using was bad....but if per chance this is also bad RAM i have no choice but to ask for replacement as financially i cannot purchase apple RAM, but i will send OWC apples diagnostic report and demand OWC replace the RAM and send me their diagnostic report that the RAM they send me is good, maybe i should have asked that in the first place....hell so many of you have said OWC was such a deal...one hopes such posts are true....it's lousy that CompUSA closed because office depot/max are crummy stores and it seemed to me they jacked their own prices up when Comp closed down maybe yes/no just a perception...
  9. Marci macrumors newbie


    Jan 28, 2008
    They are horrible! I will never deal with them again.

    You can't judge a company by how they are when things go well - which most transactions should - but how they act when things don't go well.

    ...and in that area they STINK!
  10. easy4lif macrumors regular


    Mar 31, 2005
    Southbay CA
    I've had three transactions with them and all of them have gone perfectly. I got 2 of those aluminum external enclosures (1 with firewire 800 for my iMac) and i bought a airport card for a friends eMac. I've never had a bad experience with them
  11. Nermal Moderator


    Staff Member

    Dec 7, 2002
    New Zealand
    I also have not had any bad experiences with OWC, but as mentioned by Marci it's the bad experiences that you need to watch out for. Several people praise Feral Interactive for games, but I don't like them due to nonexistent tech support. I also don't like the country's most popular cellphone provider as they've cheated me out of $75, but most people still swear by them.

    I'm sorry for your frustration, it's never good when things don't go well; I think I've even lost a few dollars from Apple with a similar sort of issue.
  12. MattG thread starter macrumors 68040


    May 27, 2003
    Asheville, NC
    The thing that bugs me the most is, what kind of business has a policy where they won't credit you for the price you paid if the price has changed, even if you've got proof of purchase and you're returning within the alloted time frame for returns???

    Seriously, has anyone ever been to a store that does that? The only time that ever normally happens is if you're returning something without a receipt and the store can't prove what you paid for it, and they have to refund you for the amount of the most recent sale-price. This policy of only refunding for the current selling price is just sleazy, period, regardless of the reason for return.
  13. RainMeister macrumors member

    Sep 16, 2008
    I completely agree with you that this is a slimeball tactic. That's why whenever I buy for the first time from an e-tailer, I always check their return and credit policy. It's usually a good indicator of the kind of merchant they are.

    For example, I never buy from a merchant that refuses to pay for return shipping of incorrect or faulty items. Why should I have to pay for their mistake? Same with any store that charges a restocking fee for any return regardless of the reasons.

    I just received an aluminum MacBook from Amazon. I paid $7 extra for next day Saturday delivery. When UPS screwed up and delivered on Monday, I complained to Amazon. Not only did they give me a $15 credit on the spot for my inconvenience, they went to UPS and got back for me the $7 extra without my even asking for it. That's what I call first-class service. It's a reason why 85% of my on-line purchases are with them, even if they are not the cheapest.
  14. MattG thread starter macrumors 68040


    May 27, 2003
    Asheville, NC
    I definitely agree with you there; most of my online purchases are from them (Amazon) as well. I wish other companies would strive to have customer service as good as theirs.
  15. andiwm2003 macrumors 601


    Mar 29, 2004
    Boston, MA
    i had so far only excellent experience with OWC. i can't understand why they for lousy $8 risk their reputation. they should refund they entire amount. my guess is it's complicated for accounting to get the refund correct and some employee out of lazyness tries to screw you. OWC should fix this.
  16. jaw04005 macrumors 601


    Aug 19, 2003
    Amazon has the best customer service in the business. I buy seriously everything from them (Prime member) much to my UPS guy's despise.
  17. FieryFurnace macrumors 6502


    Sep 19, 2008
    Berlin, Germany
    I like newegg.com and frys.com for all my electronic needs.
    They have good prices and (until now) good customer service.
    I never bought from OWC before - I would like to give it a try sometime - but after reading some threads here, I feel,..., soso,...
  18. ACiB708 macrumors regular

    Apr 6, 2008
    Interesting post, thanks for the heads up... Won't be buying from them.
  19. Semiopaque macrumors regular

    Oct 7, 2008
    So if the price increases, do they refund you more than you originally paid? That is a pretty bizarre policy, however, especially at this time of the year with prices fluctuating and sales all the time, it's probably difficult to keep people from buying something and then returning it to buy it again at 20% cheaper because it's on sale now.
  20. odinsride macrumors 65816


    Apr 11, 2007
    I've ordered memory and external drives from them (separate orders) and both went very smoothly.
  21. Vader macrumors 65816


    Oct 11, 2004
    Saint Charles, MO
    I've only bought from OWC once, but the drive enclosure I bought has worked perfectly for the 4 years I have had it. When I got it, some rubber feet were missing, so I contacted them, and they promptly sent a few extra.
  22. OWC Larry macrumors member

    OWC Larry

    Apr 7, 2005
    Woodstock, IL

    First off - MattG - if you'd like to contact me, I am more than happy to consult with you concerning this matter. I do apologize for the frustration you have expressed.

    the model you ordered:
    http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Other World Computing/MCTDVDSDB8DL/

    Is clearly listed for PowerBook G4 12/15/17" models (Titanium or Aluminum) which already have and existing DVD+CDRW Combo drive (burns CDs) or SuperDrive (Burns DVDs+CDs) installed.

    We list this model:
    http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Other World Computing/MCTDVDSDA8DL/

    For TiG4 400/500/550/667MHz models which have a DVD+CD-Rom (read-only) optical drive.

    Our Superdrive kits have been used to upgrade thousands and thousands of PowerBook G4s this year, tens of thousands since we begin offering these upgrades going back about seven years now. There is no error with the compatibility we list.

    FWIW - All models 400-550MHz came with Read Only drives. One version of the 667MHz was Read Only model stock, the later version actually came with the DVD+CDRW Combo drive. Also - if you'd prior updated a TiG4 to a CDRW or SuperDrive burner - you also would already have the needed connector plate... and thus why we note that particular difference.

    Why the higher cost for the upgrade from the Read-Only? Apple used a different connector in those systems and a special bracket with an adapter plate is required for a burner to go into said TiG4 models and this adds to the cost.

    I am sorry for the frustration and inconvenience. There was clearly some confusion on the Superdrive model and OWC had waived your restocking fees on that return. Further, yesterday morning - before 12PM CST - 6 hours before this post - you spoke with one of our customer support reps (yes, OWC a full live staff here :) who set up the refund of the $8 in question. Maybe the e-mail you quote crossed in the ether from a prior inquiry sent before the call - but our rep already took full care of this.

    We are here to help and support our customers with products that make Macs better. That is certainly reflected in the comments we regularly receive and strive for from every customer.

    Our terms of service are clearly published and written to be fair to all. Within 30 days we allow the easy exchange, replacement, or refund of products without hassle. We provide advance cross ship replacements for nearly any item within 30 days when needed and for the lifetime on memory. We have progressive 90 day policy on bare 2.5" and 3.5" hard drive purchases - should a hard drive you have from us end up being DOA/or fail within the first 90 days, our customers don't need to go to Seagate, WD, etc to get a factory refurb/replacement - we provide an exchange from our stock with a brand new drive. Memory is lifetime advance replacement covered.

    The OWC Team and I are here to truly bend over backwards to take care of all customers and assist in helping everyone get the very most possible from their Mac experience. Given the opportunity, we do so without fail.
  23. sickmacdoc macrumors 68020


    Jun 14, 2008
    New Hampshire
    I have to say that OWC Larry's well researched and detailed post just further confirms to me the fact that I know I have made the right choice of suppliers for the many orders I have placed there.

    It is very seldom that the suppliers themselves respond via the threads here to provide information when there are complaints about them or their products-- and life would be easier if more did directly address problem areas in my opinion!
  24. Rt&Dzine macrumors 6502a


    Oct 8, 2008
    I've had good experience with OWC over the past several years. But I did just have to pay the shipping charges to return some bad memory.
  25. CPD_1 macrumors 6502

    Nov 17, 2007
    South East Texas
    I've ordered from OWC a few times, and never had a problem with them. I've ordered memory, a HDD, and a drive enclosure. Not a problem so far.

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