PSA: Don't buy speakers out of a White Van / other vehicle

YOyoYOhowsDAjello

Moderator<br>A/V & Home Theater<br>Elite member
Aug 6, 2001
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#1
02-09-2010 update:
I'm just going to go ahead an sticky this, since I know one member who wouldn't have gotten fooled had I stickied this before.


Now that we actually have an audio area, I thought I'd make a thread for it. If I can prevent one person from buying "White Van" speakers, I'll be happy.

This is a widespread scam that basically consists of some guys approaching you with what seems like an incredible deal on speakers. Often they will say that there was a mistake in the order made for someone else and rather than getting rid of them some other way, they'll let you buy them for a fraction of their original value.

Sometimes the guys doing this will even have magazines or other material that attest the the quality of the speakers they are selling.

There are also a lot of these being sold on ebay as well. Some will set up websites with incredibly inflated MSRP prices and then sell through ebay so people think they are getting a deal.

Craigslist is full of these products as well (either from actual scammers or from people who bought them from the scammers). Those victims might have been thinking they'd make a quick buck turning them around on craigslist... or they might have figured out that they actually bought some junk and now they're just trying to get rid of it.

A couple examples of these brands:
http://www.sutherlandtech.com/
http://www.divincisound.com/

I decided to make this thread when I saw what appears to be a genesis media labs system being sold as an Axiom Audio Epic 80 system. What a sad day :p
http://cgi.ebay.com/AXIOM-EPIC...VWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem
(old link doesn't work)

Real Axiom Epic 80 systems:
http://www.axiomaudio.com/epic80_main.html


Anyway... don't buy speakers out of a van, and if you want a second opinion on something or a recommendation for some quality speaker options at a certain pricepoint, I'd be happy to give you some info or point you in the right direction (which is away from White Vans) :thumbsup:


More info:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_van_speakers
http://www.kuro5hin.org/story/2004/4/9/224439/1810

Related ATOT thread :p
http://forums.anandtech.com/me...id=38&threadid=2053688
http://forums.anandtech.com/showthread.php?t=2049392
 
Last edited:

venkman

Diamond Member
Apr 19, 2007
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#2
I make it a rule in life not to buy ANYTHING out of a strange, white van. ;)

That ebay sale is REALLY shady, I hope you reported it to ebay.
 

Alone

Diamond Member
Nov 19, 2006
7,492
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#3
This is why I buy my speakers retail and new.
 

YOyoYOhowsDAjello

Moderator<br>A/V & Home Theater<br>Elite member
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#4
Originally posted by: venkman
I make it a rule in life not to buy ANYTHING out of a strange, white van. ;)

That ebay sale is REALLY shady, I hope you reported it to ebay.
I asked the guy if he was going to change the auction to reflect that they aren't really made by Axiom Audio and he hasn't gotten back to me yet.
 
Nov 25, 2003
14,079
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#5
Common sense is such a fleeting ideal only to vanish by the lure of saving a dollar or two.
 

Rubycon

Madame President
Aug 10, 2005
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#6
LOL - WTH is "Professional Home Theater"?

That's like Professional Amateur Boxer.

:laugh:

 
Mar 11, 2004
18,183
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#7
Originally posted by: Rubycon
LOL - WTH is "Professional Home Theater"?

That's like Professional Amateur Boxer.

:laugh:
But, but if I pay the nice people at Best Buy more money they send out a professional who sets everything up for me. He's THX certified and everything.
 

YOyoYOhowsDAjello

Moderator<br>A/V & Home Theater<br>Elite member
Aug 6, 2001
31,195
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#8
Originally posted by: YOyoYOhowsDAjello
Originally posted by: venkman
I make it a rule in life not to buy ANYTHING out of a strange, white van. ;)

That ebay sale is REALLY shady, I hope you reported it to ebay.
I asked the guy if he was going to change the auction to reflect that they aren't really made by Axiom Audio and he hasn't gotten back to me yet.
Update: Sending a couple messages back and forth, it seems like the guy doesn't know what he has and will probably change when he gets more info (from me)

Update#2: He ended it after finding out what they were.
 
Mar 11, 2004
18,183
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#9
Originally posted by: YOyoYOhowsDAjello

Update: Sending a couple messages back and forth, it seems like the guy doesn't know what he has and will probably change when he gets more info (from me)

Update#2: He ended it after finding out what they were.
Its great that he's not being an ass or anything. I kinda feel sorry for him.

I take it you're helping him find some real speakers worth owning? Hope he didn't get taken for too much money.
 

YOyoYOhowsDAjello

Moderator<br>A/V & Home Theater<br>Elite member
Aug 6, 2001
31,195
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#10
Originally posted by: darkswordsman17
Originally posted by: YOyoYOhowsDAjello

Update: Sending a couple messages back and forth, it seems like the guy doesn't know what he has and will probably change when he gets more info (from me)

Update#2: He ended it after finding out what they were.
Its great that he's not being an ass or anything. I kinda feel sorry for him.

I take it you're helping him find some real speakers worth owning? Hope he didn't get taken for too much money.
I feel bad for him too. I thought about asking how much he paid, but I didn't want to make him feel worse.

I have him a couple links and let him know AVSforum or even here would be a good place to get advice if he wants to buy something else eventually.
 

bcmind

Senior member
Oct 9, 1999
539
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#11
you shoulda post this thread 11 years ago... u know what i mean?

:(
 

YOyoYOhowsDAjello

Moderator<br>A/V & Home Theater<br>Elite member
Aug 6, 2001
31,195
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#12
Originally posted by: bcmind
you shoulda post this thread 11 years ago... u know what i mean?

:(
Sorry, I was only 12 then and I'm pretty sure I wouldn't have know what "post a thread" meant back then :p

Time to go speaker shopping now?
 
Sep 15, 2006
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#13
haha, I have a friend that got caught up in that scam. I think he paid about 300 for some theater logics. They had him convinced with their story and all that catalog bs. He asked me to do a search for them and the first thing that came up was a page full of scam warnings. Good times.

Still not as bad as my friends little brother who got duped into thinking an oven door was a nice flat screen from bestbuy.
 

iRONic

Diamond Member
Jan 28, 2006
4,882
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#14
Aight... my buddy from Tenn. just called me up to tell me about a "hella deal" he got outside the UPS store in Chatanooga. Yup, a dude in a white van full of "kickass speakers" offered him this for $800. Bill[my buddy] said he wasn't really looking for any speakers but he saw this "HT setup." The scumbag in the van offered it to him for $325 and Bill bought it. Bah!

I brought him to this thread and he read all of YoYo's links. He's not thrilled with himself for falling for the scam. He did get the van's lisence plate number though, a Georgia tag, AGK-7515.

Anybody think he has any chance or way to get his cash back?
 

YOyoYOhowsDAjello

Moderator<br>A/V & Home Theater<br>Elite member
Aug 6, 2001
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#15
Originally posted by: iRONic
Aight... my buddy from Tenn. just called me up to tell me about a "hella deal" he got outside the UPS store in Chatanooga. Yup, a dude in a white van full of "kickass speakers" offered him this for $800. Bill[my buddy] said he wasn't really looking for any speakers but he saw this "HT setup." The scumbag in the van offered it to him for $325 and Bill bought it. Bah!

I brought him to this thread and he read all of YoYo's links. He's not thrilled with himself for falling for the scam. He did get the van's lisence plate number though, a Georgia tag, AGK-7515.

Anybody think he has any chance or way to get his cash back?
Nothing you can do as far as reporting it really afaik.

From the other ATOT thread:

Originally posted by: tranceport
I called the police who sent 2 cops to my house. I showed them all of the documentation and picture of the van. They laughed at me and said there was nothing they could do. I showed them on the internet where it was a scam. They laughed and told me have a nice day....
Since people do this willingly, there's not a whole lot you can do :(
 

iRONic

Diamond Member
Jan 28, 2006
4,882
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#16
Originally posted by: YOyoYOhowsDAjello
Originally posted by: iRONic
Aight... my buddy from Tenn. just called me up to tell me about a "hella deal" he got outside the UPS store in Chatanooga. Yup, a dude in a white van full of "kickass speakers" offered him this for $800. Bill[my buddy] said he wasn't really looking for any speakers but he saw this "HT setup." The scumbag in the van offered it to him for $325 and Bill bought it. Bah!

I brought him to this thread and he read all of YoYo's links. He's not thrilled with himself for falling for the scam. He did get the van's lisence plate number though, a Georgia tag, AGK-7515.

Anybody think he has any chance or way to get his cash back?
Nothing you can do as far as reporting it really afaik.

From the other ATOT thread:

Originally posted by: tranceport
I called the police who sent 2 cops to my house. I showed them all of the documentation and picture of the van. They laughed at me and said there was nothing they could do. I showed them on the internet where it was a scam. They laughed and told me have a nice day....
Since people do this willingly, there's not a whole lot you can do :(
Yeah, I was pretty sure he's out his $$.
 

YOyoYOhowsDAjello

Moderator<br>A/V & Home Theater<br>Elite member
Aug 6, 2001
31,195
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#17
Originally posted by: iRONic
Yeah, I was pretty sure he's out his $$.
I guess the only comfort I would give is that it could have been a lot worse... like the guy who traded the scammers his car for one of their systems :(
 

iRONic

Diamond Member
Jan 28, 2006
4,882
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#18
Originally posted by: YOyoYOhowsDAjello
Originally posted by: iRONic
Yeah, I was pretty sure he's out his $$.
I guess the only comfort I would give is that it could have been a lot worse... like the guy who traded the scammers his car for one of their systems :(
Yikes!

Well, Bill's gonna set 'em up and see what they actually sound like.
 

YOyoYOhowsDAjello

Moderator<br>A/V & Home Theater<br>Elite member
Aug 6, 2001
31,195
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#19
Originally posted by: iRONic
Originally posted by: YOyoYOhowsDAjello
Originally posted by: iRONic
Yeah, I was pretty sure he's out his $$.
I guess the only comfort I would give is that it could have been a lot worse... like the guy who traded the scammers his car for one of their systems :(
Yikes!

Well, Bill's gonna set 'em up and see what they actually sound like.
Good luck to Bill :p

Pretty much anything is going to be better than regular TV speakers, so :thumbsup:
 

iRONic

Diamond Member
Jan 28, 2006
4,882
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#20
Originally posted by: YOyoYOhowsDAjello
Originally posted by: iRONic
Originally posted by: YOyoYOhowsDAjello
Originally posted by: iRONic
Yeah, I was pretty sure he's out his $$.
I guess the only comfort I would give is that it could have been a lot worse... like the guy who traded the scammers his car for one of their systems :(
Yikes!

Well, Bill's gonna set 'em up and see what they actually sound like.
Good luck to Bill :p

Pretty much anything is going to be better than regular TV speakers, so :thumbsup:
Yup, that's what I told him. He has a Dell 37" LCD that he's been using with the integrated speakers.
 

YOyoYOhowsDAjello

Moderator<br>A/V & Home Theater<br>Elite member
Aug 6, 2001
31,195
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#22
Originally posted by: daveymark
another junk white van brand - DiVinci
Yeah, that one made the Wikipedia list. So many :Q

Audiofile
Acoustic Monitor
Acoustic Response, Acoustic Image, Acoustic Lab Technology
Denmark
Dogg Digital, Digital Dogg Audio
Dahlton
Digital Research
DiVinci
Dynalab
Epiphany
Genesis Media Labs
Grafdale
Digital Pro Audio, Pro Audio, Digital Audio, Digital Audio Professional Speaker Systems, Digital Audio Skyline Digital Research
Epiphany Audio
Kirsch
Matrix Audio Concepts
Millennium Theater Systems (MTS)
Omni Audio
Protecsound
Pro Dynamics
Paradyme
PSD
Theater Research

I especially like the ones meant to imitate well known brands
Paradyme vs. Paradigm
Kirsch vs. Klipsch
etc.
 

YOyoYOhowsDAjello

Moderator<br>A/V & Home Theater<br>Elite member
Aug 6, 2001
31,195
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#23
Update:

I e-mailed Axiom to see if they knew about White Van guys targeting their products to imitate and they sent me back this response:

"Hi Sean;

I really appreciate you contacting us about this. We'll look and see if there is anything we can do (as you suspect, it's difficult to do with these shady characters, but we'll give it a try.)

All your help is very much appreciated.

Kind regards,

Amie Colquhoun"
 

Rubycon

Madame President
Aug 10, 2005
17,771
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#24
If the ATOT crowd wanted to get started in this they would chose the brand NEF which would imitate the well known brand KEF. :laugh:

Imagine what a "Kirschorn" would look (and sound) like! :shocked:
 

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