|Dear Musician . . . |
So you bought a product and there was a problem with it—like you bought a set of strings, and the B string was missing. The correct way to deal with this is:
A) Sit in a corner, pout, and do nothing
B) Immediately go to the HC forums and start a thread about how much the manufacturer sucks
C) Contact the manufacturer and tell them about your problem
It seems most people choose A or B, but it’s worth making the effort to try C. Here’s why.
First and foremost, if the manufacturer is reputable, they’ll want to make good—that’s why they have customer service departments. The situation mentioned at the beginning actually happened (and the person chose B), but when he contacted the manufacturer, they sent him a couple sets of strings to make good, and the missing string for the set he purchased.
But there are other reasons to contact the manufacturer. If they get more than one complaint about, say, a missing string, there could be a problem with their string-packing machine that needs to be checked out ASAP. In the case of software, when people fill out bug reports, it greatly increases the odds of there being a “fix” in the near future. With some software companies, I’ve known people who were avid users of the software, and were so conscientious about filling out detailed bug reports that they started a relationship with the company . . . and I even know of one person the company hired to join their software team.
When you contact a manufacturer, though, keep a few things in mind. First, no matter how upset you are, be courteous. A company is going to feel a lot more sympathetic toward you if you seem like a decent person than if your first contact is an obscenity-laden diatribe against the company (the old saying “you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar” remains true). Second, be as detailed as possible. If a string’s missing, specify which string is missing. If there’s a software bug, tell the company which operating system you’re using, and the steps required to reproduce the problem. Give them your contact information and invite them to get in touch if they need more information.
Beyond these details, though, in our industry a lot of the people who make products are often musicians themselves, and go through the same tribulations we do trying to make a living at what we love. We’re all in this together, so think of yourself as a partner to the manufacturer, not an adversary. By helping them improve their products and services, you’re not only helping them, but you’re helping fellow musicians who will be dealing with the company in the future.
— Craig Anderton
|This Week on HC!|
Did you know that Harmony Central offers not one, but two environments for selling your gear or searching through the vast second-hand offerings that HC readers put on the private-seller market? You can either go to the Harmony Central Gear Classifieds, which you can find on the landing page of the Forums, or you can take a spin through the Classifieds section of HC’s main site, located at the top of the home page, in the horizontal category headings. The two destinations are organized slightly differently, and each has their own vibe, but savvy gear seekers and sellers should be conversant in navigating both settings. You never know who will be looking at one page but not the other. And if you do spy a piece of gear that looks interesting but that you’re not quite up on, chances are you can cross check it in the User Reviews section. Happy hunting!
Cloud-Based File Conversion Utilities
In the interest of promoting cloud computing, many sites are offering free services that would have otherwise required hard-disk-resident software to perform. One such valuable service being offered online is converting file types, especially for multimedia. For example, at www.online-convert.com, you can change any existing audio or video file type to virtually any other.
You can then download the file via a link, or send the link to a friend. No emailing of large files involved. In the audio realm you can convert .WAV or .MP3 to FLAC, AAC, M4a, or vice-versa. Windows-based video files such .WMV and .AVI can be made into Mac-based .MOV and M4a files and (again) vice-versa.
— Jon Chappell
|Featured Industry News|
The week's pick hits from our News section
A few of this week's top discussions from our Forums
This wide-ranging thread doesn’t just stop with how to get a wider, bigger guitar sound, but veers off into tangents involving converters, transients, setup advice, and much more.
The Lesson Loft is a great place to brush up on your theory. A recent discussion, called Chord Substitution for Dummies (That Is, for Me), tackles the topic of substituting one chord for another to provide a harmonic twist.
Lighter and smaller is better when it comes to live . . . unless it causes the sound to suffer. Find out of the person who started this thread found a way to make his life easier—or not.
Who would want to do such a thing, and why? Find out here, as well as some useful general comments on necks and “doing it yourself.”
You want a delay pedal. But with so many options, what do you choose? What kind of sound do you want to obtain? There’s no better place to ask than the Pedals, Multi-Effects, and Floor Boxes forum.
If comparing single-coils to humbuckers is apples and oranges, then Gibson’s P90s and Humbuckers are more like nectarines and oranges: one has a single coil, the other a hum-cancelling double coil. The single-coil P90 may be noisier, but it’s not about noise . . . it’s about tone. And that’s another matter altogether, as this discussion bears out.
Some people might dismiss “arranger” keyboards, but the state-of-the-art has changed dramatically in the past few years—and the Keys, Synths, and Samplers forum has some definite preferences as to what works, and what doesn’t.
Want to see a zillion pics of guitars that are made for making metal? This thread delivers.
Tom Petty Appreciation
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Editorial Craig Anderton, Editor in Chief • Jon Chappell, Senior Editor • Phil O’Keefe, Associate Editor • Chris Loeffler, Reviews Editor
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