Warranties

In trying to sell my DSD, a number of responses have focused on the warranty (mine still has three months). No problem with asking, but the focus strikes me as strange, or at least wrongly prioritized. Why? First, because a solid state dac, especially one built by PS Audio, is not like a car or other product that experiences noticeable wear and tear and ordinarily needs replacement parts along the way, but is well built and will presumably last for decades. And second, because PS Audio has great customer service and stands behind their equipment, often even if past the warranty period (which is how I got my current year). It seems that if the price is reasonable, the DSD is a great investment, one that normally needs little if any maintenance and whose sound will only improve over time with the firmware updates. I try to convey that, but I’m not sure it’s understood.

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Depends on your personal perspective of PS Audio gear durability. Some people have had better luck than others. They do stand behind their products, but QC can be hit or miss.

Personally I tend not to buy anything that does not have a door-to-door warranty.

If treated kindly, audio equipment should not fail. The only thing was CD players and I always stuck with TEAC drives. Until a recent failure of a relatively cheap item, that I may still get repaired, the only item I had fail was a Primare amplifier. I bought it ex-demo from the main dealer and it was 8 years old. They said it should not fail, so they paid all the costs to get it shipped back to Sweden, repaired, and returned to me.

Amazon’s change in policy about 7 or 8 years ago to give no-argument refunds or repairs has driven up quality, because it works for customer satisfaction and drives sellers to make good products and package them well. As a result, they have few returns and they have little impact on profits.

I find it comforting knowing that there is at least a little warranty when buying something used. If something’s acting funky right out of the box, at least I’m not on the hook for a repair cost on top of what I just spent on the new toy.

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The way I see it, the warranty remaining significantly impacts the resale value of the product. PS Audio pricing is based upon the inclusion of said warranty, without it I am sure they could offer their products at a substantially lower price as they wouldn’t have the liability of potential replacement/service/parts/labor on the accounting books.

Unfortunately the warranty is limited and therefore consumable. I would argue the majority of the depreciation occurs during the warranty period. Like it or not, as the original owner you paid a premium to receive warranty coverage and used the majority of it. It would seem that the market is placing a higher value on the warranty cost than what you have accounted for in your list price. The fire sale and discounts that were had from dealers after PSA announced a direct sale model aren’t helping you either; they were sold for not much more than your asking price for a new product with full warranty.

Is there really that much variability in the dacs?

I don’t think it’s as much variability of DACs coming out of PS Audio (at least after infant mortality.) But a warrantee makes me feel better if I don’t know how well the unit was treated since then. I once bought 6 Sony DVP-S9000ES’s: they all had roughly the same descriptions and the pictures looked good, but the quality was all over the map and two didn’t even function (not a problem in for my purpose at the time.)

I’ve had a DSJ bad out of the box. I’ve had a Power Plant Premier bad out of the box. I’ve had a PWT screen go bad. Recently, I’ve had to sent a P12 back since something (a cable) was loose inside and disabled the voltage regulation.

I have a Quintessence I bought used that works flawlessly (but it had been repaired per the RMA listed on the carton), and my seven year old P5 power plant has never given me a lick of trouble. Several Cables and Noise Harvesters have worked flawlessly. I guess I’ve have had more than my share of issues. Luckily everything that has failed has been under warranty. That said, quality control could be better IMO. I’m in the US with pretty stable voltage.