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Tuesday, June 29, 2010

"Emphasize uncertainty"

Another royal hosing of consumers by American industry.

Comments (8)

That must explain the cartoonishly large reference to capacitors on the box for a motherboard I recently bought. "Ultra Durable 3" -- "2oz Copper PCB" -- "50,000 Hours" -- "Japanese Solid Capacitor" - and on and on -- "Ultra Cool". Now they could add -- "Not Dell."

I also recently got a motherboard cpu combo from Frys for 89 bucks. It is astounding that competition has enabled me to get it at this price. It is more than up to the task for processing hundreds of thousands of images for my -- still as yet vaporware -- product/service. It is my main programming box, at the moment.

If anything had a label like "Approved by the People's Council of Portland" -- as a proxy for anti-competition -- would it add value?

And yet, US corporations persist in outsourcing manufacturing and engineering to a nation like China where quality has little or no meaning and where the concept of intellectual property applies only to items of Chinese interests..... And the US govt via its laws and tax codes makes all of this very attractive. But strangely no one seems to understand that in terms of national security (jobs, technical and industrial prowess, and more), this is a far bigger threat to US citizens than terrorists hidden in hills halfway across the globe.

I had some experience with this capacitor problem as well. I build my own computers, but a video card I bought popped a capacitor and leaked fluid. The manufacturer replaced it no questions asked, and even gave me a newer model card than I had.

I was in electronics and I did hear the rumors about Dell. They sort of got to this point where shipping stuff at the lowest cost was everything.

To be fair though, Dell was not the only people who got burned by the bad capacitor issue. The Chinese sold a lot of these cheap to PC makers and there were a lot of problems.

Dell could have handled it a lot better than deny, deny, deny. They sounded more like politicians then.

We have a ton of Dells here where I work, and we've had many fail due to blown-out capacitors. I'm sure this will turn into another useless class-action suit before it's done.

None of this makes one whit of sense. It's as if Dell acted poorly in this just for the sake of acting poorly. Clearly Dell is being victimized by incompetent employees. Directing sales, and CS personnel to lie, or to mislead, smacks of lower management morons acting in their own self-interest. I'm simply not ready to believe Dell, or anybody that size, just wakes up one day and says, "Okay, let's hose everybody.". I mean, they do have to sell another computer some time, right?

People are really dumb. They're even dumber when it comes to something as sophisticated as a computer. I think it's perfectly understandable to look at a series of defects arising in one's tech-wares, post-sale, and be suspicious of misuse. It's further understandable that the same small-minded MBAs who make decisions, like leaving a bad capacitor in production, are going to lie like a rug once dispersion begin being cast.

None of which has anything to do with Dell. Furthermore, the Nichicon capacitor is cited as the culprit in an industry-wide problem. Even Apple was effected. The thing that kills me is that Dell is a bargain-basement machine-line. People buy a cheap computer and then get all indignant about it when it performs accordingly.

No, I'm deeply suspicious that NYT article is just a hatchet job. Dell, as a company, is a monster. A devil, a villain. Their business-model makes me want to puke. I'm super glad to see their demise looming. But they're just going to go all jingo, and blame this on Asian manufacturing, and skate without ever facing their responsibility in wrecking the domestic production machine.

Dell is bad because they participated in a trend. That trend has sent countless manny jobs over-seas, and if Dell is gonna burn, I'd sure like to see 'em burn for the right reason.

As far as I'm concerned America and Dell deserve each other at this point.

Capacitor issue aside, there's a reason why the term Dell Hell was coined.


I've seen Dells all over the place: large medical offices, government agencies, chain stores...it always makes me smile. What a boon to their IT departments! Talk about your job security.

I've built my own systems for a number of years. I began recommending against Compaq systems a few years before Carly bought them out, and have advised against Dells for nearly as long. In both cases, the issues were similar: lousy customer no-service, and component issues.

In Compaq systems, the problem wasn't so much component quality as their insistence upon proprietary architecture, which made them a PITA to work on when a component failed or needed upgrading. In Dell's case, components were an ongoing issue.

Yet governments and HMOs don't seem to learn. At the time I began recommending against Compaq, they were the systems of choice in these environments. And today in every case, they've been replaced with Dells. The bright side there is that Dells are relatively easy to work in; just a matter of swapping out bad components for better ones.

For the record, Nichicon, the brand of capacitor involved is a major Japanese manufacturer. One supplier that I use lists 65,000 different capacitors of that brand.

This is any manufacturer's nightmare - bad parts from a reputable manufacturer. (Dell's response is another story)

BTW, heat is the enemy of this type of capacitor because they have liquid inside!


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