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Cathodes: Reviewing the competition - 6 companies

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Phil
Owner, Oznium.com

Joined: Feb 11 2003
Posts: 7719


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Post Sat Feb 23, 2008 12:22 pm

User posted image

I was curious.

On Friday afternoon at 2:30 PM (MST) I ordered a cathode kit from 6 companies. How did they stack up?

The cheapest was Xoxide at $8.54 shipped, and the most expensive was Performance-PCs at $21.95 shipped.

It is interesting to note that all six companies cater to the computer mod market.

I will report back to you in one week. By then, I will hopefully have received all 6 packages. I will also contact these companies with a customer service question to see how they respond.

=======================================================
CrazyPC
Cathode Kit: $9.99
Shipping: $5.00
Bottom Line: $14.99
Ships on Saturday: No
Return: 30 days
Restocking: 10-15%
Shipped Within: 3 days (Shipped Monday)
Delivered: Thursday (6 days after order date)
=======================================================


=======================================================
Performance-PCs
Cathode Kit: $12.95
Shipping: $9.00
Bottom Line: $21.95
Ships on Saturday: unknown
Return: 30 days
Restocking: 15%
Shipped Within: 20 minutes

Delivered: Thursday (6 days after order date)
=======================================================


=======================================================
FrozenCPU
Cathode Kit: $8.99 (with 10% discount code)
Shipping: $9.50
Bottom Line: $18.49
Ships on Saturday: unknown
Return: 30 days
Restocking: 20%
Shipped Within: 3 hours
Delivered: Tuesday (4 days after order date)
=======================================================


=======================================================
CoolerGuys
Cathode Kit: $5.95
Shipping: $8.30
Bottom Line: $14.25
Ships on Saturday: No
Return: 30 days
Restocking: 15%
Shipped Within: 3 days (Shipped Monday)
Delivered: Thursday (6 days after order date)
=======================================================


=======================================================
Xoxide
Cathode Kit: $5.99
Shipping: $2.55
Bottom Line: $8.54
Ships on Saturday: No
Return: 15 days
Restocking: 15%
Shipped Within: 3 days (Shipped Monday)
Other Notes: Never got order confirmation email
Delivered: Thursday (6 days after order date)
=======================================================


=======================================================
NewEgg
Cathode Kit: $4.99
Shipping: $4.99
Bottom Line: $9.98
Ships on Saturday: No
Return: 30 days
Restocking: 15%
Shipped Within: n/a
Other Notes: Emailed 3 days later (Monday): "After reviewing your order we notice that you are shipping to a Po Box, can you please respond to this email with a physical address that we can verify and ship your order to."
Delivered: Thursday (6 days after order date)
=======================================================



========================================
================================================
=======================================================
How does Oznium compare?

Cathode Kit: $9.99 (Price will actually drop back down 2 to 3 dollars as soon as a new shipment arrives. Price has been temporarily increased to slow down sales because of low stock levels.)
Shipping: $3.95
Bottom Line: $13.94
Ships on Saturday: YES!
Return: 365 days
Restocking: ZERO!
Ships Within: 1 hour

Others: 15 to 30 day returns, 15% to 20% restocking fee
Oznium: 365 day returns, no restocking fee
=======================================================


$8.54 @ Xoxide
$9.98 @ NewEgg
$13.94 @ Oznium
$14.25 @ CoolerGuys
$14.99 @ CrazyPC
$18.49 @ FrozenCPU
$21.95 @ Performance-PCs


What are selling points are most important to you? Is it price? Customer service? Detailed product information? Easy checkout process? Fast shipping?


=======================================================

Update - 1 week later - All 6 packages have been received:

User posted image
User posted image

I was curious how these companies handle customer service, so I sent them the following email. None of the cathodes were actually broken. Please forgive my sin. I'm just testing how they respond.
Quote:
Hello, I have ordered a set of the 12" cathode lights and they seemed to come in quickly.
When I opened them today the box was dinged up and, as I'm sure you know, these lights don't handle force very well. Needless to say they were shattered to pieces inside... I know that I've heard you guys were really cool about replacements, but I wasn't sure what my options were in this instance.

please contact me as soon as possible as this is my newest lighting project i have going.

Thanks for the great products!


Performance-PCs replied 30 minutes later with a bad reply:
Quote:
Well that is why we don't like shipping those in the mail. USPS is not insured like UPS. For future I would pick UPS if the damage was that bad.

RMA# 1830 Ship to the address below...


Xoxide replied 30 minutes later with a nice reply:
Quote:
Hi,

I apologize for the inconvenience. I will have a new set sent out to you right away.

Thank you, have a great day!

Rich Krauss
Customer Service


FrozenCPU replied an hour later with a nice reply:
Quote:
I will send another one out for you today, you should see it soon.


I have yet to hear back from CoolerGuys, CrazyPC, and NewEgg!

I am annoyed that NewEgg uses a giant box and a massive amount of packing peanuts to ship a single cathode kit. It is wasteful.
Drifting10

Joined: May 28 2007
Posts: 1908
Location: St.Joseph, Illinois


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Post Sat Feb 23, 2008 1:09 pm

i like the price service and shipping phil
PwrRngr

Joined: Jul 19 2007
Posts: 4407


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Post Sat Feb 23, 2008 1:42 pm

For cathodes, price would be the most important issue to me (same with LEDs). Most of the time they break it's b/c a tube breaks and not a manufacturing issue.

*EDIT* Customer service is important in most products but not really for cathodes.


Last edited by PwrRngr on Sat Feb 23, 2008 2:43 pm, edited 1 time in total
mx107marlin

Joined: Aug 12 2007
Posts: 3095
Location: Fairborn, OH


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Post Sat Feb 23, 2008 1:47 pm

Most important selling points for me are

Service, Price, Shipping options

(In that order)
nate-00neon

Joined: Dec 10 2007
Posts: 135


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Post Sat Feb 23, 2008 2:26 pm

service is a must...i called and the dude who i talked to really helped me!
alienyoungjr

Joined: Apr 30 2004
Posts: 4654
Location: Texas


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Post Sat Feb 23, 2008 2:38 pm

price is a big issue for me as well.
customer service for me is not a key factor cause i rarely need it.
Black DX

Joined: Oct 16 2007
Posts: 1007


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Post Sat Feb 23, 2008 2:44 pm

I used to be heavy in the pc modding scene (as pics of my tower sorta show) and I can say I've ordered from several of the people above, I've been happy with the service from Coolerguys. Xoxide, and NewEgg (which I'll never use again, Mwave has the same stuff, better prices and better service) I was less than happy with on their service and shipping times....

I look forward to this test, I'm curious to see how the pc shops stand up.
Tim

Joined: Nov 16 2003
Posts: 10795
Location: Kalamazoo, MI


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Post Sat Feb 23, 2008 3:06 pm

60% Customer Service, 40% Price.
J_Martin588

Joined: Sep 18 2007
Posts: 959


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Post Sat Feb 23, 2008 3:36 pm

^^^^ 100% better then everyone else
guthix12

Joined: Aug 21 2007
Posts: 287
Location: CT


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Post Sat Feb 23, 2008 4:44 pm

Price is my main concern
Radioflyer

Joined: Sep 25 2007
Posts: 1563


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Post Sat Feb 23, 2008 4:53 pm

It's worth noting that before I discovered Oznium, I used to deal with Xoxide. On many occasions I would recieved the wrong color cathodes.

For glow lighting, Oz is the place to go.

Xoxide is good for computer based accessories and Fans for amp racks.
pOrk

Joined: Jan 03 2004
Posts: 8391
Location: Milwaukee Wi


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Post Sat Feb 23, 2008 5:20 pm

I bought all my cathodes for 2.99 a pair from Crazy PC, they have huge sales there all the time.
Golfer

Joined: Aug 23 2004
Posts: 1290
Location: Milwaukee, WI


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Post Sat Feb 23, 2008 6:35 pm

I bought many cathodes and such for computers from www.case-mod.com Perhaps another company you would like to include in your little game.

No idea about their customer service, but shipping was a little slow.
Tim

Joined: Nov 16 2003
Posts: 10795
Location: Kalamazoo, MI


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Post Sun Feb 24, 2008 2:29 pm

I've considered buying from SVC before. They have them for about $6.49.
josh9015

Joined: Sep 05 2003
Posts: 2256
Location: Melbourne, Florida


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Post Sun Feb 24, 2008 2:42 pm

svc is where I get my cathodes at. no problems ever and they are 5.75 when you buy 3 or more kits.
Chris

Joined: Sep 27 2004
Posts: 2395
Location: NY


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Post Sun Feb 24, 2008 11:09 pm

http://www.pctoys.com/840556012009.html

6.89 for white, 5.90 for yellow.
Phil
Owner, Oznium.com

Joined: Feb 11 2003
Posts: 7719


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Post Sun Mar 02, 2008 7:59 pm

Updated! In the first post.
mx107marlin

Joined: Aug 12 2007
Posts: 3095
Location: Fairborn, OH


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Post Sun Mar 02, 2008 8:09 pm

Can't help but notice that all but the Performance PC's kits were the same one... I also notice that NONE of them are the same as the flowlighting kit...

Would Phil be interested in doing a couple performance tests against the flowlighting brand?

Maybe evaluate that kit against the flowlighting kit in the following categories.... longevity, startup time, temperature handling, stiffness (which is less likely to break), and maybe a few more...
Losing quickly

Joined: Apr 26 2005
Posts: 5706
Location: SC


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Post Sun Mar 02, 2008 8:43 pm

That look similar to the tile in my bathroom. All the wasteful packaging for New Egg was the first thing I noticed.
Chris

Joined: Sep 27 2004
Posts: 2395
Location: NY


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Post Sun Mar 02, 2008 10:14 pm

So wait a minute. This may be weird but...

You lied and are getting free sets in the mail? Did you reply back and say they really AREN'T broken?

*shrug*

mx - Phil used to sell the same Logisys brand as everyone else does. Not sure if you knew that or not. Who knows, maybe they are just the Logisys kits (or something similar) repackaged with the Flowlighting logo. Similar to the HID kits?
Tim

Joined: Nov 16 2003
Posts: 10795
Location: Kalamazoo, MI


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Post Sun Mar 02, 2008 10:27 pm

I think he should give out the sets as prizes for the top posters.
mx107marlin

Joined: Aug 12 2007
Posts: 3095
Location: Fairborn, OH


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Post Mon Mar 03, 2008 6:19 am

Chris wrote:
mx - Phil used to sell the same Logisys brand as everyone else does. Not sure if you knew that or not.


I did not know that... but I figured that might be a possibility.

And Tim, Haha, I wonder why you'd want that biglaugh.gif Mr. Number 2 Poster!
Ahh... Sneaky Sneaky icon_biggrin.gif
ShadowBOX

Joined: Feb 26 2008
Posts: 856
Location: Fort Wayne, IN


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Post Mon Mar 03, 2008 2:45 pm

My biggest concern is the color of the cathode. I've found that depending on who made the cathode, the color varies greatly. Honestly, I have had much better luck with the cathodes from computer stores. The transformers seem to be more robust. Also, when doing purple, its a much better color than the flow lighting purple which is much more of a peach IMO. Still love Oznium, but think the cathodes are the weak point.
nate-00neon

Joined: Dec 10 2007
Posts: 135


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Post Fri Mar 07, 2008 5:20 am

are we goin to get some pics of the colors?
o6blink

Joined: Jan 29 2005
Posts: 1051
Location: Dover, Delaware


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Post Thu Apr 03, 2008 6:32 pm

x 2. I want to see comparison pictures. I remember when you used to sell the Logisys cathodes as well, they'd come just like those ones pictured. Doesn't look like they have changed at all. I would like to see some pictures comparing the ones by flowlighting and the basic logisys cathodes everybody else sells.
kramer13
Oznium Employee

Joined: Jun 20 2004
Posts: 3744
Location: Baltimore, MD


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Post Thu Apr 03, 2008 9:18 pm

Yeah.

I wouldn't mind setting up some camera shots and comparison photos here. I've been really bored lately.

Go ahead and send'em my way.
ShadowBOX

Joined: Feb 26 2008
Posts: 856
Location: Fort Wayne, IN


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Post Fri Apr 04, 2008 6:02 am

I could take some comparison shots of the purple ones. I have both Oznium and Logisys ones laying around. They are quite different.

The blue from both are very similar.
djtecthreat

Joined: Jan 21 2007
Posts: 1128


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Post Fri Apr 04, 2008 11:17 am

On such a disposable product I'm mainly price and performance over customer service, All the kits I've had fail were due to my own error (well breakage) not workmanship. I'm not the kind of person to return a kit that I broke, so customer service didn't help here.

Xoxide seems to have the best price, and while I ordered my customer's kits from Oznium recently and passed the higher price on to him, For my own truck i'll order from a site that sells them cheaper. I have 2 of the Logisys kits running on another vehicle and they're just as good as the Flowlighting kit. Its interesting to note that all this stuff is made in China anyway.

I will go for lowest price on Cathodes, simple. I will still order my LED's (NOT strips) from Oznium, the quality is better and they last longer.
ImagoX

Joined: Aug 24 2006
Posts: 2124
Location: Columbus, Ohio


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Post Fri Apr 04, 2008 11:52 am

I'm kind of surprised by the lack of response from NewEgg... I get ALL my PC stuff form there if I can help it, as they usually respond to questions same-day. Odd.

That "use UPS next time" reply: talk about suckage. Boo! Oz FTW.
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