Headphones this time and these boys are getting really good at making stuff that sounds and looks identical to the genuine ones I already have:http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/160669297187?ssPageName=STRK:MEWNX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1439.l2649
I got several in the post this morning at less than £30 a pair inc delivery and certainly good enough to give to the commentary team on footie matches!
if they can knock off a set of Bose noise cancelling headphone's, I'll be interested.
I tried a pair that my brother bought and they're pretty good but too pricey for me
Chinese counterfeit goods are well known to be linked to slavery (particularly children), organised crime (especially drug cartels) and even murder. Here's one document worth reading before considering your position on buying/selling such goods.
And here's another interesting website with some interesting news stories etc.
And an interesting video (one of many on YouTube) on Sure mic fakes http://youtu.be/nIaphYCox20
Just FYI :)
Thanks chrome but the point is that once again I don't think that these are fakes at all, the seller is in hong kong, has good feedback and has sold lots of them to very happy people!
I must have bought around ten pairs of these headphones over the past 15 years and these ones are identical and packaged the same as all the ones I have bought in the UK or USA.
If it's from HK or elsewhere in China and half the price (or less) of the items regular price I think it's a safe assumption it's counterfeit. :) As you can see from the forum, they're very convincing, just like a whole tranche of Sony, Sure and Panasonic microphones and other headphones too.
Oh well think you may be right on this one chrome as close inspection of the box and some of the items highlighted in the forum posts point in that direction, thing is though they sound just like all my others that are genuine and are very well made, it's just the box that gives these away as the printed barcode label on close inspection looks very naff.
Anyway they will still be put to good use as spares and to save footie commentators trashing my genuine ones when they sit on them!
I quite expect the headphones themselves are original and the packaging has been cobbled together. Someone basically had the assembly factory turn out a few extra thousand units in downtime. But they don't have access to boxes which will likely be made elsewhere.
My theory anyway.
P.S just bought some foldable Sony headphones - MDR-7509HD
That's what I never get with these so called fakes and in this instance they are of the quality of the genuine ones and certainly sound the same, even the cable is the nigh on impossible to solder sony type as I put neutrik jacks on all of mine.
OK if I had got a heap of low quality junk for £30 or even worse had paid full price for junk but they are identical in quality to my genuine ones bought from well known suppliers such as studiospares and jigsaw 24 etc.
Oh well they will go into active service and at least when someone sits on a pair again I will not lose as much.
I suspect the notion that they are genuine in dodgy packaging is comforting, but a very expensive option for the factories - but it's up to the individual. The man in the video spent so long moaning about everything, when the only thing that matters one one sentence. "They sound like ****!" - that, for me is the important thing. If they had sounded, like Gary's, nice and same/similar to the genuine ones, would anyone have complained? If they sounded good, the packaging would be in the bin, unavailable for inspection. I'm certain huge numbers of counterfeit products are shifted on ebay, and people only complain when they are substandard. For a one-off project, I needed some Sennheiser radio systems. They are probably going to be lost or stolen because they've gone in to an unattended venue. I bought 4 from ebay for daft money, brand new, from Hong Kong. These are much better than my previous accidental counterfeit purchase - and even have the correct threads so they fit the Sennheiser rack brackets. I know they are not genuine, mainly because I have 4 identical serial numbers! - but they perform fine, and the hire fee will cover the cost of the project. The client intends skipping all the kit at some point, because the site will be redeveloped and everything will during the winter just get damp and wet. The client didn't want to spend two grand, and didn't even want to spend the usual hire fee - so this worked well for both of us.
The real giveaway, apart from the serials, was the fact that they are presentation systems and came with rather nice headset mics - the theatrical type, which I'm very pleased with, because they sound excellent - I'll use these again!
If you want absolute genuine goods, but from a proper authorised dealer, and pay the full price.
If anyone is interested in sound equipment, as in loudspeakers, look at soundking.com a Chinese manufacturer who have actually invested in one of the UKs oldest an amazingly well respected audio manufacturers. They have a very big factory and production line. If you have time, go through their range of loudspeakers and you will see a number of products that look very familiar to some well known American brands - because they make them. However, they sell the same cabinets under their own brand - so they're not counterfeits - but they are exactly the same as the much higher priced US models. They usually put different grills on the, but the mounting holes and physical sizes match the well known ones. This company make products sold through quite well known UK companies (Studiospares being one) and show the Chinese can do it properly.
Thanks for that link Paul always good to have these, it just so happens that my wife's theatre company has just bought some studiospares PA kit for their now production of hansel and gretel and I was inspecting it over the weekend as it was good quality and very good value.
I noticed that they were very much like and american type of unit so now I know where they came from.
I have been buying some of the takstar mics and kit, it is also very well made and designed and does the job very well.
Like you I need to find solutions to my clients needs but unfortunately the margins are always being squeezed so budgets are a lot tighter so if I can get a good sounding piece of kit from china at lower cost then so be it.
I take chromes point regarding sweat shops etc but I am afraid that never prevented major companies exploiting such people for far more profit than I will ever make, china is part of our global economy now so like the USA if I can source products that I need there then so be it.
There are indeed some very reputable firms based in China as pointed out above, and indeed I have personally dealt with them in the past, as well as Japanese and Taiwanese manufacturers... and in fact I have a PA with Studio Spares enclosures. It's great kit, and was a good price. So not disputing any of that... or firms who legitimately make a product for a western company and then knock out a few re-branded for themselves... I'm sure that does happen, but not too often, as my experience is they don't want to jepordise their potential future business.
I'm more concerned with the Chinese counterfeiters who are many, and operate in a highly questionable manner making electronic goods like iPads, iPhones, Cameras, Microphones and Headphones particularly. Most of these are linked to criminal activities in some way.
I take chromes point regarding sweat shops etc but I am afraid that never prevented major companies exploiting such people for far more profit than I will ever make...
As I said it's not the 'sweat shops' I'm concerned with Gary. It's more the full-on slavery, organised crime, murder and links to drug cartels, prostitution etc. that is more of an issue morally and ethically. Here's a related and very informative video for anyone interested...
I've met a girl who at the age of nineteen had her left hand nailed to a workbench for over 24 hours, so she would assemble electonic components with her right hand, because after being starved and beaten for over four months she would no longer do it willingly. She ended up having to have her hand amputated, after escaping a couple of weeks later. This was around 2005 in one of the remote Chinese provinces. She is French and had applied for a job whilst backpacking. When she escaped (in winter) she was barefoot and had only the clothes she was wearing... she weighed less than six and a half stone and had also been raped a number of times. The factory made fake Sony and Apple electronics products.
So before we flippantly disregard stories like that above, just because we can get expensive electronic products at cheap prices, perhaps we should ask "at what cost our savings?". Perhaps we should also ask ourselves, "Are our denials and attempts at justification simply a means of dealing with an inconvenient truth?"
If a significant portion of the 4Q society we live in can't spare a thought for its neighbours (either domestic or business) then what chance is there for anyone else?
I'm stopping now before I end up in a full scale rant.
Appreciate all of that chrome and I do not seek out copy goods as a rule and tend to take a punt more out of curiosity as to what their quality is like, I would rather but some takstar headphones that are part of their product base than loads of fake sony's anyway and I've thrown lots of fake watches I've been given in the bin as they generally break anyway.
I do buy a lot of genuine items from china and have found that the quality has been superb and they have been very useable but where do you stop and consider how they were made, I would never buy fake trainers or clothing but I am sure that a lot of what we buy from mainstream companies has also been made under the same conditions as fake goods but I leave the BBC and the investigative self shoot directors and journalists to deal with that moral issueas I am sure they get well paid to seek out such injustices!
Just a head up (pun intended). i bought some of these cans and they are wired in reverse.
That confused me for a little while HA! The plug seems quite tricky to unscrew, I was hoping to resolder it.
So it looks like some of the locking 1/8 inch jacks Gary's also found will be the in my next order.
I'm neither pro or anti China, but criminal activities we'd all agree are disgusting. However, my dealings with the Chinese just show that their view of what is moral or not is just different. Chrome has a PA sourced from Studiospares, made by Soundking who have some OEM contracts with some very well known US manufacturers. Soundking also own Cadac Electronics - the UK manufacturer of premium audio consoles - who seem to seek sonic perfection. I too have some of their PA and mm for mm, Kilo for kilo, the product also appears with a different label on it. I suspect, but can't prove, that the only difference is the perforated grill on the front, and a few blemishes in the finish. I reckon they could actually be the rejects from the 'A' line, that get rebranded as the ones Studiospares sell. Side by side with the original US brand, they certainly sound the same - who knows?
The other thing is that the Chinese culture firmly believes that to copy a product is proof the original is worth copying. They are happy to produce these things at a fraction of the cost and really do not see what the fuss is. They do know that what they sell isn't genuine, but we buy it and resell it - this they take as our acceptance of copying as fine and dandy. Their advertising clearly shows a Chinese workforce making American products, labelled Made in the USA - they tell you about themselves and how their aim is to make high quality goods. I really can't object to the presence of the products when we're so happy to buy them. If we didn't buy them, they'd not make them.
Oddly - I don't think we'll have many fake channel 38 radio systems - my contact tells me that that frequency band is banned in China, and they're more frightened of their own government than we are of ours.
I've had a big consignment of microphones with interchangeable heads (like 451s) arrive and they apologised for not branding them as I'd not mentioned it. I could have had AKG printed on them, but chose not to - and they said sorry!
The illegal stuff happens - and crooks get in on the operations. Sure - it happens, but it's not happening everywhere - and I'd guess not to our type of kit!
I just bought a load of UHF and VHF radio kit from china and have found it to be very good quality and whilst it may be based on known brands offer some better facilities on the mid range models.
The cheaper £22 H777 UHF units are chinese branded and fully re-programmable with a usb lead and software, the more expensive £45 TH-F8 UHF and VHF radios are very easy to use and also offer repeater tone and semi duplex mode.
They have all been easy top set to my ofcom licence frequencies and allow the narrow band use that is also specified.
Headsets are cheap too at less than a tenner a go and if they get lost or broken at least replacement costs are not too high.
As you may have read I have also bought several ultradisk 4016 lav mics (YPA) and they are also very useable and good quality and are not copies of any known mike on the market. The takstar 451 a likes are also in use on a regular basis and have enhanced my kit as has all the low cost chinese sourced kit.
I've added this to the Chinese topic we had going and this time is lighting.
I had a couple of Chinese Arri lookalikes, a 650 and 1K fresnel two years ago and they were ok - came from Steven Studio, but I have a theatre job coming up where lighting designer has specified "similar to Arri" because they will be seen, but I'm reluctant to buy the last of the Arri tungsten Fresnels - from BVE it is clear that LED is where they're going, and old fashioned tungsten is on the way out, even though the T series is still quite new. However, one of the companies I deal with - the Ever Rich Trading Company in Hong Kong (daft name, I know) has the old style Junior shaped versions in their list. I'd not had these from them before, but decided to buy some to see if they were the same as the Steven versions, and have been pleasantly surprised.
The Steven versions all failed the PAT test straight away because earthing was poor. These all passed the test. I can't be certain, but the castings for the front and back have tiny little marks that suggest the mould is the same as the Steven ones, but the internal sliding mechanism is more sturdy. The porcelain lampholder on one did not clamp the lamp tightly enough, and these Bi-pin holders I'm quite familiar with, and they have an adjuster on the rear to set the tightness, but I didn't have the correct tool to do it from the single access plate on the bottom, so I had to dismantle it. However this gave me a good chance to have a look at the internal wiring close up, and it's pretty good. All the flexible cables made of appropriate silicone cable with fibreglass heatshield braid sleeving. These are pretty well made, and metal parts are machined well. These damn things are exceeding fiddly to re-assemble, but sorted it all out, then retested.
The price from the factory after the £/$ conversion is about £150 which included the freight cost. No import duty charged just the VAT @20%. Complete with barndoors. They even have 13A plugs fitted, rather then the big Blue connectors the Steven versions had last time. I'm quite pleased with these, and will order another 6 to go with the 4 I just bought to do the job, and then stick them in my hire stock.
Paul, do you have a URL for Ever Rich Trading Company? I can't quite find them...