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    'Dodgy' CDs from major online retailers.

    Lately, I have received a number of CDs from well known online retailers (CD-WOW, Zavvi, TheHut etc) which have seemed a 'little off'. Something about them just hasn't 'looked right'.

    e.g. I recently purchased 'The Red Hot Chili Peppers - By The Way' CD from Zavvi only to find the transparent tray that holds the disc in place had been replaced with a cheap and nasty opaque one - thus obscuring the picture behind the disc! The booklet/inlay was also printed on poor quality matt paper instead of high quality glossy paper that one would expect. Anyway, I repurchased the exact same disc in ASDA for £1 and it had both the transparent tray and high quality glossy paper booklet! Conclusion, the online purchase was indeed not as I had expected and was to put it bluntly was vastly inferior to the shop bought one.

    So WTF is going on? Why the huge disparity in quality with the EXACT same product? (identical release, identical catalog number etc). Are old second-hand CDs being dressed up in new jewel cases with reprinted (but low quality) booklets in an attempt to recondition them as *new*. Is there a more logical explanation, or are we being hoodwinked by the retailers/suppliers/record companies?

    Something is certainly amiss IMHO. Has anyone else received goods that are not as they should be or that just don't 'ring true'.




    BTW, for the avoidance of doubt I should stress that I am NOT suggesting that items are either fake or counterfeit.

    18 Comments

    Some shops import cheap CD's, I got the same CD from CD Wow and on the back it says made in Philippines. The better version says made in Europe.

    Sometimes cases break so they have to replace them too!

    Credit Crunch..!!

    I wonder if it has anything to do with sites like musicmagpie?
    ]http//ww…uk/

    They have to be making the money somehow??

    If you receive one of these Asian imports make sure you check the track listings as well. It's not uncommon for this type of CD to have different track listings.

    I remember buying a copy of GnR's Use Your Illusion II from my local market on cassette. I should have figured it was some ropey pirate copy when I looked at the inlay card, and all the swearwords had been blanked out!!!

    Certainly places like BangCD, CD Wow etc etc sometimes issue the Asian releases rather than the UK/EU releases.

    I have not had any problems personally with any imports, certainly not fake or replaced jewel cases or inferior printed booklets, but I guess the booklet prints quality all depends on which record company it is and their asian counterpart.

    Original Poster

    cicobuff;7680924

    I have not had any problems personally with any imports, certainly not … I have not had any problems personally with any imports, certainly not fake or replaced jewel cases or inferior printed booklets, but I guess the booklet prints quality all depends on which record company it is and their asian counterpart.



    Thing is, the examples I have come across are NOT Asian imports but genuine UK releases! I also double checked the CD catalog/matrix number in each example to confirm this. To be honest I suspect that old used/second hand stock is being tarted up and resold as new. Am I paranoid? Maybe not, as there are clear incentives for some to engage in this type of sharp practice. After all, record companies hate the second market as they get no cut from sales made. However if used stock magically becomes *new* again..............!!!!!!!!! What other explanation can there be? Certainly, I struggle to think of one!!

    Also in the RHCP example I stated, I know 3 other people who received the same inferior rubbish I did. This kinda rules out the possibility that I was unlucky and points to the fact that perhaps something more organised (and sinister) is going on here.

    Take the problem to Trading Standards then, they will help and advise.

    another hut group thread. I wonder were they will come in bitterwallets worst company of the year next year.

    I can only echo what the op has said, bought a bluray box set from them (zavvi) and the thing turned up with dog earred cardboard sleeve, not sealed and broken plastics inside the actual case. After complaints being ignored for a while they offered a replacement if I sent it back at my expense with no refund on postage costs.
    Gave up in the end and now mention their crappy customer service at every opportunity.

    WTF is a CD?

    ants97;7681982

    another hut group thread. I wonder were they will come in bitterwallets … another hut group thread. I wonder were they will come in bitterwallets worst company of the year next year. I can only echo what the op has said, bought a bluray box set from them (zavvi) and the thing turned up with dog earred cardboard sleeve, not sealed and broken plastics inside the actual case. After complaints being ignored for a while they offered a replacement if I sent it back at my expense with no refund on postage costs. Gave up in the end and now mention their crappy customer service at every opportunity.



    hate them too, customer service is awfull, terrible site

    etceteraz;7681719

    Thing is, the examples I have come across are NOT Asian imports but … Thing is, the examples I have come across are NOT Asian imports but genuine UK releases! I also double checked the CD catalog/matrix number in each example to confirm this. To be honest I suspect that old used/second hand stock is being tarted up and resold as new. Am I paranoid? Maybe not, as there are clear incentives for some to engage in this type of sharp practice. After all, record companies hate the second market as they get no cut from sales made. However if used stock magically becomes *new* again..............!!!!!!!!! What other explanation can there be? Certainly, I struggle to think of one!!Also in the RHCP example I stated, I know 3 other people who received the same inferior rubbish I did. This kinda rules out the possibility that I was unlucky and points to the fact that perhaps something more organised (and sinister) is going on here.



    My god, I don't think you are paranoid at all, I would be equally worried if my cash was going on second hand stock like that if thats the case.

    So I wonder where the booklet reprinting takes place, would like to dig up some more info on this underhanded practice.

    Although you mention that others have been given the inferior rubbish in the example you have given, however, one possibility is the manufacturer cheapening the process, I can think of one CD I own that a mate also owns, that I bought on day of release and he bought much later, the CD printing and booklet colouring/thickness is different, although obviously they bear the same catalogue numbers.

    Could be just differences in quality between batch processing.

    Before Woolworths collapsed a company owned by them, Entertainment UK, used to churn out this type of stuff as sale items. I think they were mostly customer returns etc etc as well as goods sent back on a sale or return basis.

    When Woolworth's failed it was thought that Entertainment UK would survive but it hasn't so I would expect another company has now taken over recycling returns etc. I did think that Smiths News had bought them but I'm not so sure now.

    To be honest it seems right up the Hut Groups street this kind of thing.

    As I wrote before get ]Trading Standards involved if you have an obvious example, I'm sure they'd love to get their teeth into something like this

    Original Poster

    cicobuff;7682061

    Although you mention that others have been given the inferior rubbish in … Although you mention that others have been given the inferior rubbish in the example you have given, however, one possibility is the manufacturer cheapening the process, I can think of one CD I own that a mate also owns, that I bought on day of release and he bought much later, the CD printing and booklet colouring/thickness is different, although obviously they bear the same catalogue numbers.Could be just differences in quality between batch processing.



    Valid point.

    However, did I mention that in the Red Hot Chili Peppers example the discs had scratches on them!!! Yes, so thats pristine jewel cases (with ugly opaque trays), absolutely immaculate bookets/inlays (but printed on nasty matt paper) yet physical discs that are scratched/marked!! Used discs in new packaging perhaps. Afterall the actual disc is possibly the most expensive thing to replace in the product and yet the least noticeable when assessing product condition.

    hottoshop;7682381

    Before Woolworths collapsed a company owned by them, Entertainment UK, … Before Woolworths collapsed a company owned by them, Entertainment UK, used to churn out this type of stuff as sale items. I think they were mostly customer returns etc etc as well as goods sent back on a sale or return basis.When Woolworth's failed it was thought that Entertainment UK would survive but it hasn't so I would expect another company has now taken over recycling returns etc. I did think that Smiths News had bought them but I'm not so sure now.To be honest it seems right up the Hut Groups street this kind of thing.As I wrote before get ]Trading Standards involved if you have an obvious example, I'm sure they'd love to get their teeth into something like this



    I would have thought a lot of stock got absorbed by Head retail stores?

    etceteraz;7682393

    Valid point. However, did I mention that in the Red Hot Chili Peppers … Valid point. However, did I mention that in the Red Hot Chili Peppers example the discs had scratches on them!!! Yes, so thats pristine jewel cases (with ugly opaque trays), absolutely immaculate bookets/inlays (but printed on nasty matt paper) yet physical discs that are scratched/marked!! Used discs in new packaging perhaps. Afterall the actual disc is possibly the most expensive thing to replace in the product and yet the least noticeable when assessing product condition.



    Hmmm....very strange, either as you say second hand or the only other possible scenario I can think of is the album in question by the Chilis, was it ever released in limited edition cardboard digipak or anything? Perhaps something that could get easily damaged, then maybe the publisher had a recall on the damaged stock and reissued like that? (Without checking the CDs for scratches) Who knows, you need some sort of insider info.

    Original Poster

    ...and again. Today I received what appeared to be yet another 2nd hand disc tarted up as new.

    The surface of this disc looks like it may have been 'polished' in an attempt to make the disc as new. Try as they might though, when reflected against light you can tell it ain't *new*.

    Also, the inlay booket was dogeared and had 2 deep pimple marks left by the jewel case, yet the case was of a different design that used 'runners' to stop the booklet sliding out!!!! Clearly NOT the original jewel case then.

    I try not to be too fussy. Indeed I've had the occasional 'lemon' in the post from all major online retailers in the past (with the volumes they deal with this is understandable). However one retailer in particular seemingly sends junk out EVERY time. I guess some of their prices are uber low for a reason. However, if I wanted used goods I'd shop on Ebay.

    Time to take up an earlier suggestion and check out trading standards I think.
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