ramblings from the noisedoctor

March 26, 2009

way better than my school science projects

Filed under: geeky stuff, kudos, space — noisedoctor @ 7:49 am

I found this news story about a group of students: “Teenagers armed with only a £56 camera and latex balloon have managed to take stunning pictures of space from 20-miles above Earth.” And, to me, the photos they got are quite impressive. My inner geek is quite happy.

January 29, 2008

etymotic rocks!

Filed under: cool companies, geeky stuff, kudos, music, soapbox — Tags: , — noisedoctor @ 5:34 pm

These days, I rarely run across great customer service–often decent customer service, but great service catches my attention. I thought I should give them some props here, for whatever that’s worth.

A little over a year ago (maybe longer, not sure), I got a set of the Etymotic ER-4 earphones as a gift from my previous employer for some extra work I did. They are really sweet. I used to travel every week on planes and trains, and these earphones were just amazing at blocking out the noise. Their sound quality is nothing short of amazing as well–and was thisclose to having a PhD in acoustics. Once I stopped traveling and didn’t have a real need for these, I decided to use them while doing outdoor jobs: mowing grass, chainsawing, chipping wood, etc. They cut out more noise than my custom-made ear plugs and over-the-ear muffs combined–and I could listen to music with only 1 click above what I’d listen without the noise-generating device nearby, again, with amazing quality–I used to pick out things from some songs while mowing grass that I had never noticed on my home or car stereo before. Okay, enough raving.

Well, at the end of this past summer, the sound in the earphones started to cut in and out, like there was some sort of loose connection in the line. If I wiggled the wires (not at the plug or earphones), it would usually come back in. Eventually, I had to give up on listening to music, but since they blocked more noise than my other noise-suppression arsenal, I used them without any music.

A few weeks ago I finally got my tail in gear and sent them an e-mail to ask if they could be looked at. They quickly and professionally responded that the units have a 2 year warranty and gave me an RMA # and their address to mail them back. Not having any proof-of-purchase, I reluctantly mailed them in. I figured that I’d get a phone call or e-mail telling me they needed a repair and it would cost me handily to get back my prized earphones.

Oh, not so. I got a box in the mail today. Not my earphones, but a brand new set of the same model. There was a sheet from the company documenting their testing and confirmation of the problem with my earphones, and an invoice for $0.00.

Wow. You guys rock! I am so thrilled to have these earphones back and ecstatic to have them repaired/replaced for free–great customer service all the way around. It’s impressive to see a company stand behind their product like this these days. Kudos!

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