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OWC (a.k.a macsales.com) Poor Reliability - anyone else?
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How would your rate your experience of reliability with OWC / Newer Tech products over all?
Extremely Reliable (Sliced bread with awesome sauce on it)
25%
 25%  [ 7 ]
Reliable (You can count on it like death and taxes.)
29%
 29%  [ 8 ]
Average (Eh. Some good and bad, depending upon what you get.)
29%
 29%  [ 8 ]
Unreliable (Expensive hockey pucks and door stops.)
7%
 7%  [ 2 ]
Extremely Unreliable (I'd rather buy a used car from a guy in polyester.)
7%
 7%  [ 2 ]
Total Votes : 27

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bebo94
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Joined: 08 Feb 2009
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 08, 2013 8:41 am    Post subject: OWC (a.k.a macsales.com) Poor Reliability - anyone else? Reply with quote

Hi there,

I first came across OWC (Other World Computing) way back in the day when they were advertising in side of CC Cloner.

I was excited to see all the great things they provided for Macs. And I really appreciated their video tutorials so I could decide if I wanted to install something myself.

But over the years, my major purchases from them have been flawed with problems:

Processor Upgrade - semi-fail
Several years back, their G4 processor upgrade breathed life into my tower but it lost the ability to sleep. Every time it went into sleep mode it would not wake back up, forcing me to do a hard reboot.

When I called OWC support they said the processor upgrades generally did not support sleep modes. This was just the way it would work on this Mac. I think this was a pretty important thing to know before I made a purchase and I sure didn't see it disclosed anywhere if it was. So this severely limited how I could use my machine.

Mac Mini RAM - total fail
I purchased a RAM upgrade from them and had MicroCenter install the RAM. The Mini would not recognize the RAM and boot up. MicroCenter tech showed me this. He then cleaned the RAM contacts with an eraser and it still wouldn't work. So finally he grabbed a different brand off their own shelf and it started right up.

OWC took the RAM back but I was out a lot of trouble and time.

Macbook Pro Battery - fail, then semi-fail
I purchased one of their laptop batteries for my Macbook Pro and it failed within 3 months. They replaced it.

The second battery has not held charges near as long as the OEM battery and I properly calibrate it once or twice a month depending upon usage.

And just recently, I noticed that the battery is starting to swell out of its case. I've only seen this on OEM batteries well after retiring them while they were waiting to be recycled.

Newer Tech
The processor and battery were both Newer Tech brand. I don't know if that's OWC house brand or not. Since they sell it and promote it I consider it their endorsement.

I am wondering if anyone else has experienced similar reliability issues with Newer Tech and OWC?


Last edited by bebo94 on Sun Jun 09, 2013 10:25 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Smithcraft
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 08, 2013 3:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just about every order I ever placed with them has been a nightmare.

In particular, I ordered a Radeon 9800 for my G4. It was faulty, and their tech support dragged out the whole "did you turn it off, and back on" bs for a month. Mostly by waiting a few days to respond. By the time they decided it was faulty, the return window had passed and they didn't want to accept it back. I had to go to ATi and deal with them, and do everything all over. Ati finally, and not happily, accepted it for exchange.

As for Newer, Newer used to be it's own company, but at some point OWC bought them. If you look up Newer's address, it's the same as OWC's address.

SC
_________________
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[Desktop] Intel mini - 2.16Ghz 2GB 60GB HDD - Newer miniStack v2 500GB - 10.5.8

[Media System] Intel i5 mini - 2.33Ghz 8GB 500GB HDD - 4 x Hitachi 2TB HDD in a qBOX-SF - 10.7.5 (Thanks Phil!)

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Fox
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 09, 2013 6:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have had mixed experience with them; some good and some bad on the 10 or so items I ordered from them. I remember that years ago, one of the RMA's really took a long time and a lot of emails. My biggest gripe with them is the cost of shipping to Canada; the charge is outrageous. For this reason, I will only buy small items that can be sent regular mail or I order when I'm visiting someone in the States.
_________________
Mini 1 (2011): 2.3 ghz Core i5; 8 gb RAM, Corsair 240gb SSD, 500 gb Seagate XT
Mini 2 (2009): 2.26 ghz Core 2 duo, 8 gb RAM, 500 gb Seagate used as HTPC
Also a Cube, 13" MacBook Air, 20" 2.66 ghz iMac & 11.6" Acer 1810TZ running Ubuntu & Crunchbang
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billb
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 10, 2013 7:12 am    Post subject: A SUCKER for OWC Reply with quote

I have over half a dozen External OWC Enclosures.
So far all but two have failed. The only reason its
two is because one of the Enclosures I haven't used
yet.

The two "new" Aluminum HD Enclosures that share
a footprint with the new Mac mini enticed me to buy
one of each. One houses an Optical Drive (I ordred
it with a BluRay Player) and Hard Drive and the other
just holds a HD.

Well I installed a 2.5 inch HD into the Optical Drive
model and plugged it in via Firewire and several of
my other high capacity enclosures would randomly
eject without actually ejecting. I woud get the "Improper
Disconnect" warning but their they were in Disk Utility.

Actually I'm not pissed off...YET. My intention was to
put two SSD HD's in the Enclosure that holds the
Optical Drive. This way I know its power supply should
be strong enough for both SSD's. It has an eSATA
Circuit Board along with Firewire and USB. Well, I couldn't
leave well enough alone. My plan is to bypass the internal
eSATA circuitry. I had a Machine Shop mill out the back
of the Aluminum Enclosure so I could fit two eSATA to
SATA cables. When I make the time I'll remove my Mac
mini's Internal HD's and place them in the modified
Enclosure and attach them via my eSATA Hack.

Problem is, I don't know it the OWC disconnects do to
poor Circuitry or weak Internal Power Supply. I'm gonna
find out as soon as I do the switch. My eSATA to SATA
Hack bypasses the Internal Circuitry so if thats it I'm
ok. If its a weak Internal Power Supply.......I'm screwed.

Anyone interested in a photo of the milling work to the
enclosure? If I get enough interest I'll post one. My intention
was/is to eventually install two of those 960 GB SSD's.
I have everything ready to go except for the 960 HD's.
They'er still on B.O.

I forget why I bought the Single Enclosure. Life's been
a real bitch since I've recently had several heart attacks.
I hope y'all have missed me.......just a bit.
_________________
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16GB RAM, Samsung 512GB SSD
MacBook AIR 11 Inch
Mac mini, Model 1.1, 2.33 GHz C2D Proc
20" iMac G4 PPC
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Y-Guy
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Joined: 06 Feb 2010
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Location: Tri-Cities, WA

PostPosted: Mon Jun 10, 2013 9:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow I'm surprised at the issues so many respected members have had. I've got three drive assemblies, never purchased with HD's and all three work fine. I had one that had issues on delivery and they were prompt about sending a replacement.

I recently upgraded memory to a mini at work, but I went with Micron due to experiences in the past.

When I first bought my Mac it seemed like OWC was all the rage and well respected, sure doesn't seem that same reputation is around today though.
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iMac 24" 2.4 GHz 4GB | Logitech S530 | Z-2300 speakers | NewerTech Guardian MAXimus RAID
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billb
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 10, 2013 11:27 am    Post subject: Respect OWC Reply with quote

I respect OWC, its just their
HD "Enclosures" that cause
me to pause. You'll notice
I purchased two expensive
enclosures without waiting
for reviews to come in. I
made a leap of faith. Only
time will tell if it all works
out.

I'll keep everyone posted
as to how things go. Just
waitin' for those SSD's
to come off of B.O.
_________________
2011 Mac mini 2.7 GHz i7 with
16GB RAM, Samsung 512GB SSD
MacBook AIR 11 Inch
Mac mini, Model 1.1, 2.33 GHz C2D Proc
20" iMac G4 PPC
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STL Mark
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Joined: 26 Jan 2013
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Location: St. Louis, MO

PostPosted: Tue Jun 11, 2013 10:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've found their memory and their MiniStack Max to be excellent products for me. I'm using a MC270LL/A with 16gb and have had no issues. I will continue to buy from them until I have a bad experience that they refuse to make good on.

Their return policy seems great. My interactions with their customer service team have resolved my issues appropriately.
_________________
Mid 2010 mc270ll/a 2.4GHz Core 2 Duo 16GB/320GB
miniStack Max, Bluetooth Keyboard/Trackpad, aTrackt Go! Mk II


Last edited by STL Mark on Wed Jun 26, 2013 12:11 am; edited 1 time in total
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Texark
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Joined: 11 Apr 2005
Posts: 358
Location: Houston

PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 12:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I bought my memory from them for a 2009 Mac mini and 2011 13" MacBook Pro. All of the sticks have worked perfectly without issue. I also purchased one of their clear FW800 hard drive enclosures for an old 2.5" hard drive. It's still running fine to this day. My orders were also shipped out promptly without any issues. So I would definitely give them an A grade at this point. No complaints here.
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Grasshopper
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Joined: 07 May 2009
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Location: CA

PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 12:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

STL Mark wrote:
MiniStack Max

I just got one a couple weeks ago and it's been working out great. When did you get yours?

I haven't purchased much from OWC over the years, but I've been happy with all of my purchases. I would compare them right up there with Newegg. I mean, they aren't as crappy as Best Buy. I can't buy anything from them without having an issue with it. I've also had more than one purchase from them end up being a resealed product. And don't get me started about their dead pixel policy and returns!!!!! Mad
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2012 Mac mini Server with 16GB of RAM
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g5g5
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2013 4:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've purchased 5 maybe 6 products from them through the years. I've never had any issue with any of them. They were also processed and shipped without issue. I have never dealt with their customer support though. I really wouldn't be able to say anything about them either way. Overall, I would recommend them to friends and family though.
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Smithcraft
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 13, 2013 1:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I missed you billb! I hope you're doing better now!

SC
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Grumpy old man of computing.

[Desktop] Intel mini - 2.16Ghz 2GB 60GB HDD - Newer miniStack v2 500GB - 10.5.8

[Media System] Intel i5 mini - 2.33Ghz 8GB 500GB HDD - 4 x Hitachi 2TB HDD in a qBOX-SF - 10.7.5 (Thanks Phil!)

Make sure it has pins!
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philiparcario
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 14, 2013 4:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I will chime in mixed bag some truly good deals. A pair of toshiba apple 500gb ssds at 275 each about 1 year ago that was outstanding price and they still work.

Many bad case/enclosures two very good cases.

these were great

http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/firewire/usb/raid_1/Gmax_Portable


http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/firewire/EliteALmini/RAID/eSATA_FW800_FW400_USB


never buy ram from them as it is almost always over priced. if you are usa based buy ram from amazon as you have 30 days to return it just say it failed memtest. they will take it back and pay for return shipping.


Also great videos. They got me into modding and upgrading of minis. I had a single core 1.6 intel 2006 mini I purchased a dual core 1.83 ran the video on how to upgrade the 2006 fully upgraded it. then watched the 2006 on how to upgrade the 1.83 mini. Sold the 1.6 mini and had an updated 1.83 mini at a good price. I was so pleased I decided to mod and sell right then. I must have done over 350 minis since then.
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STL Mark
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 15, 2013 1:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Grasshopper wrote:
STL Mark wrote:
MiniStack Max

I just got one a couple weeks ago and it's been working out great. When did you get yours?

I haven't purchased much from OWC over the years, but I've been happy with all of my purchases. I would compare them right up there with Newegg. I mean, they aren't as crappy as Best Buy. I can't buy anything from them without having an issue with it. I've also had more than one purchase from them end up being a resealed product. And don't get me started about their dead pixel policy and returns!!!!! Mad


I purchased mine in mid may. You can read my review at this link. I have found it to be an excellent device. I was able to easily mount it and my Mac Mini on the wall behind my TV with mounts from HideIt although it required some contact with their customer service to find the right mount for the MiniStack max. I can see this getting adapted for several uses in the future. I bought mine bare and have not put in an optical drive yet but probably will add a Blu-ray writer in the future. Great to have things that can so easily be adapted to current desires.
_________________
Mid 2010 mc270ll/a 2.4GHz Core 2 Duo 16GB/320GB
miniStack Max, Bluetooth Keyboard/Trackpad, aTrackt Go! Mk II


Last edited by STL Mark on Wed Jun 26, 2013 12:16 am; edited 1 time in total
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billb
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 15, 2013 1:54 pm    Post subject: Smithy Reply with quote

Hi Smithy, glad to see you with an i5 mini.
Thought you would flog your PPC mini to
death! I'm doing better now but I'm not well.
I just take one hour at a time and let the day
worry about itself.
Smithcraft wrote:
I missed you billb! I hope you're doing better now!

SC

_________________
2011 Mac mini 2.7 GHz i7 with
16GB RAM, Samsung 512GB SSD
MacBook AIR 11 Inch
Mac mini, Model 1.1, 2.33 GHz C2D Proc
20" iMac G4 PPC
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ez061111
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 15, 2013 2:48 pm    Post subject: Re: Smithy Reply with quote

billb wrote:
I'm doing better now but I'm not well.
I just take one hour at a time and let the day
worry about itself.


Take care and feel better, brother billb
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