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Getting Screwed

Discussion in 'Electronic Repair' started by N Cook, May 31, 2007.

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  1. N Cook

    N Cook Guest

    In a UK national newspaper today, about 80 USD, emphasis on the XS of XS8303
    http://technology.guardian.co.uk/weekly/story/0,,2091219,00.html
    Is £40 the right amount to pay for a loudspeaker screw?

    Charles Arthur
    Thursday May 31, 2007
    The Guardian
    http://image.guardian.co.uk/sys-images/Technology/Pix/site_furniture/2007/05
    /30/sony_screw.jpg
    The world's most expensive screw?


    Strictly speaking, it should be ?61.31 (£41.51), which will buy you one -
    count it, one - screw that will hold your valuable Sony XS8303 loudspeaker
    together. Actually, you'll need four of them, as the picture clearly shows.

    So, will you be paying by cash or credit card, sir or madam? Do you carry
    that much cash around with you?

    The discovery of this pricey fixing, verifiable through Sony's parts
    database, unveils the strange world of spare parts, where things that you
    would expect to cost about £1 for a dozen instead cost a dozen pounds each.

    What on earth could it be made of? "The crushed souls of Sony gamers,"
    suggested one wag on the quartertothree.com forums. "Plutonium," ventured
    another. "Unobtanium," said yet another.

    We did call Sony to find out the secret of fixings that cost as much as a
    meal in a London restaurant (including wine). Alas, its people were in
    Unobtanium too.

    Still, if you feel excited about that screw, and you've got an XS8303 (or
    perhaps two - speakers often come in pairs), then you can get your very own
    manual for them online. Just drop by Manuals Paradise and you can download
    the PDF - for just $19.50 (£9.80).

    Those screws are looking a bit cheaper already, aren't they?
     
  2. mike

    mike Guest

    The screw does cost a nickel. The rest is for:
    The robot that plays music while you're on hold for 45 minutes.
    The cost of the 45 minute phone call
    The person in India who takes 45 minutes to answer your call.
    The computer that the person in India uses to screw up your order.
    Credit card fees
    The warehouse that stores the spare parts.
    The person who digs around in the warehouse to find the wrong part to
    send you.
    The person who manages the person who digs around in the warehouse.
    The person who manages the person who manages....
    Lights, heat, desk space, more computers, fire insurance, health
    insurance, workmen's compensation, taxes...

    Sad fact is that for many items, the actual cost of sending you the
    tiniest of spare parts exceeds the cost to build the original item.

    Sounds like you've never bought a spare part for an automobile.
    Care to explain why a starter for my motorcycle costs $475?
    You don't want to know how much they want to install it.
    Original MSRP of the cycle was $1495. Wouldn't be so bad if I weren't
    on the THIRD one...

    I don't like it either, but it's not likely to change. And raising my
    blood pressure over it probably will cost me more in the long run.

    mike
     
  3. Find an auto electrical shop run by Asian migrants. IME it'll be a lot
    cheaper there!
     
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