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Botched Neumann Ai shipment
Old 27th June 2014
  #1
Gear Head
 
Graphorium's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Botched Neumann Ai shipment

BACKGROUND:
My special-order Neumann U87 Ai from B&H arrived via UPS today.

B&H wedged the $3k microphone awkwardly into a shipping box it clearly didn't fit.

Worse, they didn't see fit to protect it with any additional packing materials whatsoever:

No popcorn, bubble wrap, foam, air-pouches, or anything else to dampen shipping shock.

While the unit packaging took a beating, the microphone itself is in one piece thanks to the wooden jeweler's-box and its high-density foam lining.

Nevertheless, that is not a flight case, and this is an extremely delicate instrument.

QUESTION:
While the mike APPEARS OK, I have no means of testing it within the two-day period B&H have so generously afforded me.

Should I be worried that such an exquisitely delicate electronic instrument was subjected to this much shipping-shock without a care for protection?

Does this bode poorly for the life or functionality of this microphone?

Is this appropriate packing for something I paid $3,199.95 + tax for?

I greatly appreciate anyone's experience, insight and guidance in this matter.
Attached Thumbnails
Botched Neumann Ai shipment-image_7902.jpg   Botched Neumann Ai shipment-image_9891.jpg   Botched Neumann Ai shipment-image_4724.jpg   Botched Neumann Ai shipment-image_2451.jpg   Botched Neumann Ai shipment-image_346.jpg  


Last edited by Graphorium; 5th July 2014 at 05:30 PM.. Reason: Angry tone unprofessional, inappropriate.
Old 27th June 2014
  #2
Lives for gear
 
McPhaul's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
If I were unable to test it within the return period I think I'd send it back. That's not a cheap product, I've recieved Guitar Picks packed batter than that.

Good luck with it,
Will
Old 27th June 2014
  #3
Gear Maniac
 
JazzTradition's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Yeah, that is pretty weak.

Just a little foam would have gone a long way.

Not great that u can't test it before then.

When u say it is in one piece. Have u checked the internals, capsule, wiring etc.?

Personally I would return it because of the ridiculous packing even slightly dented that small box. Mostly I would return it as 3K for an AI wouldn't be the mic I would buy. But I am not a Ai fan, of course a really nice mic. If I needed an AI, I would buy it used and take the savings and buy a used MIKTEK CV4 or Pearlman or many other tubes mics.

But, based purely on the shipping, not sure I would send it back. But definitely check the internals.

Lets us know if u keep the mic.
Old 27th June 2014
  #4
Lives for gear
 
toledo3's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
I wouldn't even plug it in. What a bummer.
Old 27th June 2014 | Show parent
  #5
Lives for gear
 
hasbeen's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
Send them the pic. B&H has always done good by me. Maybe some asshat in packing was having a bad day.

They need to pay your shipping back and send a different 87 inside a flawless Neumann box packaged properly for shipping.

Or send a refund.

Make sure serial# of replacement is different.

Even though the mic is most likely okay, it's the price paid and principal involved.
Old 27th June 2014
  #6
Gear Maniac
 
catfishmusic's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Yeh, I'd give that packing job a D-. That said, I'm sure the mic will be fine.
Old 27th June 2014
  #7
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
i bet that the mic is just fine. its still in its neumann box....
if the wooden box was damaged i'd be worried as well. but otherwise it will most likely perform as it should. the wooden box is there for a reason. its very rugged. id just plug it in and give it a go. if it goes up in smoke the seller is obviously the one to blame. but im shure it will work just as advertised
Old 27th June 2014 | Show parent
  #8
Gear Maniac
 
kraus's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by salomonander ➑️
i bet that the mic is just fine. its still in its neumann box....
if the wooden box was damaged i'd be worried as well. but otherwise it will most likely perform as it should. the wooden box is there for a reason. its very rugged. id just plug it in and give it a go. if it goes up in smoke the seller is obviously the one to blame. but im shure it will work just as advertised
There are delicate parts inside that mic. Send it back. You didn't pay for "will most likely peform as it should". Next week it may become intermittent. Then, oops..
Old 27th June 2014 | Show parent
  #9
Lives for gear
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by catfishmusic ➑️
Yeh, I'd give that packing job a D-. That said, I'm sure the mic will be fine.
A D-? That generous? That's a solid fail, especially given the contents. Totally inexcusable; UPS would take one look at the way this was packed and deny any liability for damages, insured or not. Then where would you be, given B&H's extremely generous return period?
Old 27th June 2014 | Show parent
  #10
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by kraus ➑️
There are delicate parts inside that mic. Send it back. You didn't pay for "will most likely peform as it should". Next week it may become intermittent. Then, oops..
as long as the wooden box showes no sign of damage this mic will be just fine. there are no fairies living in there. just solder joints. how would they be damaged if the wooden box is still intact? yes, they could show damage if the parcel was dropped from big height due to shock. no packing would help there much. just plug the darn thing in and record some music!
Old 27th June 2014 | Show parent
  #11
Gear Maniac
 
kraus's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by salomonander ➑️
as long as the wooden box showes no sign of damage this mic will be just fine. there are no fairies living in there. just solder joints. how would they be damaged if the wooden box is still intact? yes, they could show damage if the parcel was dropped from big height due to shock. no packing would help there much. just plug the darn thing in and record some music!
You mean because there may be loose solder points now? That extra bubble wrap acts like the shock on a bike. It absorbs some of the hit. Dig it? Just because the wooden box isn't dented doesn't mean it didn't take a few hits. With less to absorb the shock the insides of the mic get rattled more. That's why we pack things carefully with many layers of protection when we ship expensive things. Otherwise we'd all be just throwing stuff into boxes without a care.

Old 27th June 2014
  #12
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
omg people. how little experience do you people have with shipping equipment? there is nothing in the pics that remotely points to any shipping damage at all. even the outer box looks totally intact. obviously there was no fall from big heights. these tiny dents in the carton box really are nothing to bother about. but go ahead and send it back if you are that much of a p*ssy

why doesnt the OP simply ask the seller to give him more than two days to test since it was so "terribly" boxed. i guess the seller will be fine with that. now then - he could plug it in and record some music
Old 27th June 2014
  #13
Gear Maniac
 
🎧 15 years
Thats a bad packing job for such an expensive mic. I would call them and let them know how it was packed. Then I woud ask for a full refund.
Old 27th June 2014 | Show parent
  #14
Gear Nut
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by salomonander ➑️
omg people. how little experience do you people have with shipping equipment? there is nothing in the pics that remotely points to any shipping damage at all. even the outer box looks totally intact. obviously there was no fall from big heights. these tiny dents in the carton box really are nothing to bother about. but go ahead and send it back if you are that much of a p*ssy

why doesnt the OP simply ask the seller to give him more than two days to test since it was so "terribly" boxed. i guess the seller will be fine with that. now then - he could plug it in and record some music
I've had shipments from VK where the outer box was roughed up, but the insides had so much packaging and the outer box so big it didn't matter.

If you're not a pussy about these things why don't you send me one of your beloved pieces of gear and I'll shake it for say, 12 hours, and give it back to you. Hey, maybe it'll work just fine
Old 27th June 2014
  #15
Gear Guru
 
jwh1192's Avatar
 
2 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
you said you cannot test it ? tell them you need more time due to the way it was shipped .. if they say NO, then ship it back and be done with them … cheers john
Old 27th June 2014
  #16
Lives for gear
 
ddageek's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Call B&H tell them how bad the packing was and the condition of said shipment upon recipt.
You want a knew one NOW any problems tell them Your calling your credit card Company!
Tell them if they ever want another DIME OF YOUR MONEY
They have to show you they deserve it!

Now B&Hs observation of the Sabath buys you some time and for all practical purposes the 2 day policy is 2 buisness days.
Everybody has bad days it just sucks when it's your stuff that gets treated like crap!
If you have any problems PM me !
Old 28th June 2014
  #17
Deleted User
Guest
If it were me ..and its not.... I would most certainly send that one back... unless you have a lab for 'testing' I would never trust it. I would also try to have a verbal with a manager or someone that has decision power and register a formal complaint to them .. no excuse whatsoever for shipping an SM57 like that let alone a U87.... wow.... if you get any static get the credit card co ( assuming you paid by card or paypal ) involved
Old 28th June 2014 | Show parent
  #18
Deleted User
Guest
Quote:
Originally Posted by salomonander ➑️
omg people. how little experience do you people have with shipping equipment? there is nothing in the pics that remotely points to any shipping damage at all. even the outer box looks totally intact. obviously there was no fall from big heights. these tiny dents in the carton box really are nothing to bother about. but go ahead and send it back if you are that much of a p*ssy

why doesnt the OP simply ask the seller to give him more than two days to test since it was so "terribly" boxed. i guess the seller will be fine with that. now then - he could plug it in and record some music
could not agree less.. easy call with someone else's 3K.... you own stock in B&H or something??? I have been shipping and receiving gear for over 40 years ... when a customer opens a box on a purchase it should make them smile .. not make them sh(&^t. a dollars worth of bubble wrap goes a long away.. also when one ships things that cost real $$$ they should be insured for enough to get 'high value' treatment... and it does not get the drop off the conveyor into the pile.
Old 28th June 2014
  #19
Lives for gear
 
🎧 15 years
off course this is terrible packing. it also makes sense to complain at the shop. but it does not look as if actually any damage happened on the photos. why get into all the hassle of returns etc when one could just plug it in and see if it works? and as i have said. im shure it will. good night.
Old 28th June 2014 | Show parent
  #20
Deleted User
Guest
Quote:
Originally Posted by salomonander ➑️
off course this is terrible packing. it also makes sense to complain at the shop. but it does not look as if actually any damage happened on the photos. why get into all the hassle of returns etc when one could just plug it in and see if it works? and as i have said. im shure it will. good night.
your assurance and a dollar wont buy a coffee most places
Old 28th June 2014
  #21
Gear Head
 
Graphorium's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Thanks all.

Thanks to everyone so far.

Excellent points, all.

I am very grateful for everyone's time and perspective.

B&H provides 2 days to report anything, and no returns.

I have no way of testing inside their laughably short window.

B&H has utterly refused to provide me any service or support to remedy this.

I hope to have it returned and not passed off on to anybody else in turn.

The SN is 1214120214, should anyone be considering a U87 Ai from B&H, and not want this one passed off to them in turn.
Attached Thumbnails
Botched Neumann Ai shipment-image_1202.jpg  

Last edited by Graphorium; 5th July 2014 at 05:36 PM.. Reason: angry tone unprofessional.
Old 28th June 2014 | Show parent
  #22
Gear Head
 
Graphorium's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by salomonander ➑️
omg people. how little experience do you people have with shipping equipment? there is nothing in the pics that remotely points to any shipping damage at all. even the outer box looks totally intact. obviously there was no fall from big heights. these tiny dents in the carton box really are nothing to bother about. but go ahead and send it back if you are that much of a p*ssy

why doesnt the OP simply ask the seller to give him more than two days to test since it was so "terribly" boxed. i guess the seller will be fine with that. now then - he could plug it in and record some music
So I'm a pussy because I drop close to $4k all said and done, and they act like they don't give a #%^*?

Why are you in the High-end forum, please?

Given your insouciance, you can't possibly have ever purchased anything meriting your presence.
Old 28th June 2014 | Show parent
  #23
Gear Maniac
 
kraus's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Graphorium ➑️
So I'm a pussy because I drop close to $4k all said and done, and they act like they don't give a #%^*?

Why are you in the High-end forum, please?

Given your insouciance, you can't possibly have ever purchased anything meriting your presence.
I even gave the guy a 1/2 dozen flowers. Name calling like that doesnt usually happen face to face.

To the OP. I agree with you 100%. The solder points are now suspect...

Get a Refund. Work your way up the phone chain until you get the right person...
Old 28th June 2014 | Show parent
  #24
Gear Head
 
Graphorium's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by kraus ➑️
I even gave the guy a 1/2 dozen flowers. Name calling like that doesnt usually happen face to face.

To the OP. I agree with you 100%. The solder points are now suspect...

Get a Refund. Work your way up the phone chain until you get the right person...
Thank you, Kraus.

Thanks to everyone.

The range of opinions has been very helpful in gaining perspective on a disappointing experience.

Just need to return the item and move on.
Old 28th June 2014
  #25
Gear Guru
 
jwh1192's Avatar
 
2 Reviews written
🎧 15 years
so sorry to hear this … never purchased anything from B&H and will now rethink any future purchases unless maybe face to face in their store that is closed more than open it seems .. again sorry to hear your troubles .. please let us know how this turns out

cheers john
Old 28th June 2014
  #26
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
I'm surprised why anyone would buy from B&H. Guitar Center and Sweetwater have similar pricing or will match B&H pricing, have much better service and a hassle free 30 day money back guarantee. I would tell B&H to go sh$t in a hat with both their arrogant attitude and their BS return policy.
Old 28th June 2014
  #27
Lives for gear
 
syra's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
Yeah that's a ****ty packing job. Send it back and stop doing business with B&H. Vintage King is who you should use. Trust me.
Old 28th June 2014
  #28
Lives for gear
 
mattcollen's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
There is no excuse for how that was packaged and shipped. Send it back, get your refund, and buy one elsewhere.

I realize that the packing could've been a fluke, but such a big purchase demands TLC. I bought a wooden box for a U87 a few years ago (for $100), and it was packaged ridiculously well. I'm sorry your mic was packaged so poorly.

Good luck, and I hate to see this happen to anyone.
Old 28th June 2014
  #29
Lives for gear
 
🎧 10 years
Personally, when I spend that kind of money with a company and for a high end piece of eqpt I don't (hypothetically) want to be 2nd guessing as to whether that edgy sound I'm hearing is the result of an edgy singer, the natural characteristic of the mic or some problem caused by poor packaging.
That is shoddy in the extreme; you should be able to send your photos to a person of authority in the company who without question will remedy your situation i.e. a new speedily presented and properly packed mic, return postage COD of the old one and a sincere and strong apology or an offer of a complete refund, failing that they deserve the wrath of the dwindling buying public if they haven't already got it.
As some have said VK have a pro rep ; I've dealt with Warren from Zen who was terrific and there are probably several that others could name to treat your order to a proper standard .
Don't let them fob you off.

Cheers, Ross

Last edited by reddirt; 28th June 2014 at 09:23 AM.. Reason: spelling
Old 28th June 2014 | Show parent
  #30
Deleted User
Guest
Quote:
Originally Posted by Graphorium ➑️
The support I'm getting from everyone is just amazing, and has helped me deal with a really unfortunate situation without becoming disheartened.

This was the first piece of my first home studio, and the experience was so bad I was questioning whether I should just scrap the whole idea.

To spend that much money -which is a LOT to me, BTW- and get that kind of treatment has left me feeling pretty wretched.

I don't believe I'm a super high-maintenance or problem customer, which is why I posted the pictures, and posed the question to everyone.

Is this just me? Is this just the way things are in Pro Audio? It doesn't FEEL right, but then again, I'm an utter novice to the field.

On the other hand, my professional capacities were Electronic Engineer and Data Center Architect, so I'm not stupid, and have dealt with vendors and their bull**** for a lifetime now.

This is my first high-end purchasing experience in Pro Audio. If they're are all like this, I need to pick another retirement hobby.

I recently retired early, from a career I wasn't crazy about, because of a very serious medical diagnosis.

Between my severance package and cashing out my retirement funds, I have a small lump sum to work with.

Coming down sick, I decided to blow prudence off, and buy myself that little home studio I've always dreamt of: You only live once.

I worked myself to the bone for 25 years, and this small sum is all I have to show for it. I am not a wealthy man.

So to hand my hard-earned pay over to B&H, only to be spat on, is truly demoralizing.

To all those who said they have a vendor and a contact who treats them with dignity: I welcome a referral.

B&H will never see another dime from me.

Further, I recommend, based my own gut-wrenching experience with them, that anyone who reads this should think twice before doing business with them.

I can't "test" this mic, shouldn't have to, and it wouldn't accomplish anything anyhow.

I'm an EE, so I could certainly void the warranty, pop the capsule, and take my meter on a hunt for cracked traces, pulled leads, broken soldering joints, etc...

But seriously? After dropping almost $4k?

I CAN'T do a sound check: I've literally nothing yet to plug it in to.

Last week I purchased the first components for the front end of my signal chain:

* BAE 11 slot 500 series lunchbox with external PSU
* Grace Design M501 Pre
* Grace Design M502 Opto-Comp
* Moog 500 Series Analog Delay
* Moog 500 Series Ladder Filter

That leaves room for seven other tasty flavors of Pres, Comps, EQs, Analog Effects, Etc... Before my lunchbox is full and I call my front end complete for now.

I'm ready to pull trigger on those yummy 500 series Burls...

Then on to Interfaces, Conversion, Mixing...

I'm an amateur, and building my rig up one step at a time.

I don't know how else to do it: I have to start somewhere, right? I decided to start at the beginning; first mic, then lunchbox...

If I'm going about it all wrong, please enlighten me.

Just remember this entire enterprise is purely for my own education and enjoyment, nothing more.

So far, it has been stressful and bitter. No fun at all.

Nobody enjoys being treated like their money's no good.

I would call B&H and have this done with, but they haven't been open since I began his thread, and god only knows when they'll be back.

I understand they are observing Sabbath. This was just bloody awful timing as well.

I am open to, and extremely grateful for any and all constructive advice from people who know more than I do about Pro Audio, which is everyone reading this I wager.

Being called a pussy, or insinuating I'm not a Man for toughing out a seriously f****d up shipment of an incredibly fragile piece of equipment would be laughable if it weren't so sad.

Solomander, you're roughly... Fifteen years old, I'd guess. Am I right?

Your advice isn't helpful.

To everyone else, Thank you ever so much.

This is what GS should be about. I hope to gain enough experience to be able to help other neophytes some day.

I'm not in the High-End because I claim to have any special knowledge: to the contrary.

I'm here because I'm buying really expensive #%^*.
how you feel is how you are supposed to feel about the transaction . you are not wrong .. B&H is wrong..and their response is very scammy and lowlife. I have bought a lot of gear and have never seen an expensive piece like that packed with such disregard. .. makes me wonder if it was returned before and they were just trying to 'bait' a damage claim. I would have no trust for them and do whatever means you can to secure your refund.

the norm for me is good experiences with companies whose main business is audio ( when I think audio I don't think B&H ...camera's and printers ..yes ) and i generally try to deal with independent 'smaller' companies that I can form somewhat of a rapport with. a few very good vendors were mentioned by others above.

return the item get a refund and don't look back...
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