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Thread: My Carvin Experience

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Kingston, Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    226

    Default My Carvin Experience

    As some of you who have read my previous post know, I ordered a complete PA system from Carvin's website.
    Rather than try to remember everything "after" it gets here, I will create a thread describing my experience from start to finish, and I will update it as new developments unfold. I also plan to include photos and a detailed review of the equipment once I get it and have a chance to test it out.

    Sunday June 6th - Placed my order online.
    C1648P-LM153 Complete PA System
    http://www.carvinguitars.com/product...-LM153&cid=103

    $1,799 USD + $472 Shipping to Canada
    * Just to be fair, this $472 includes all taxes, duties and brokerage fees that us Canadians would normally have to pay. Carvin pays everything up front, so once the equipment gets here, there is nothing more to pay, it's all included in that shipping fee)

    Monday June 7th - Received an acknowledgement email stating my order was received and is being processed.

    Here's a little tidbit of information you should know aheead of time:
    If you visit Carvin's website and click on "Pro Audio", you will see a banner on the left of the webpage showing an offer for free gear depending on how much money you spend.
    Since I'm in the $1500 category, I'm entitled to a free wireless mic system.

    This is a nice offer from Carvin, but what the website doesn't tell you is that in order for this free item to be processed, you must "call in" your order in person and order through a salesman.
    There is no mention of this small caveat anywhere on the banner and I only found out by accident when I called in to inquire.

    Carvin did send this freebie out to me as soon as I asked about it, but had I not asked, there would've been no mention of the special promo,

    They really ought to make this clear on their site, but no worries, now you know.

    I've been dealing with a Carvin salesman by the name of Kevin Wall (ext 111), and he's been very friendly, helpful and knowledgable.

    Tue June 08 - Received an email from Carvin stating the mixer is on back-order but the rest of my order has shipped. I called in to inquire and they said the mixer still needs to be built. I don't know how long it will take but I will keep you posted. I do like the fact that Carvin builds their equipment right at their factory in San Diego, and they don't import it from China or whatever.

    I'll add to this thread once I have more news or receive anything.

    Regards
    AJ

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Kingston, Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    226

    Default Re: My Carvin Experience

    Monday June 14th -

    Received the speakers, 2 mics and cables today, the mixer is on backorder.
    Removed the speakers from the boxes, they were packed very well.
    Speakers are extremely light, about 37 pounds each, they almost feel "too light", but they are made out of some sort of polymer plastic or something.

    It's kind of a weird sensation, I'm used to the old days of touring with a triple Martin stack where everything weighed a ton.

    The true test will be when I hook it up and see how it sounds.
    I'll keep you posted.

    Regards
    AJ

    PS---> Once I get my camera back Ill take a few shots of the speakers.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Southern Victoria, Australia
    Posts
    2,166

    Default Re: My Carvin Experience

    Plastic boxes and Neodymium drivers make a big difference to the weight of modern speakers.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Cambridge, Ohio, USA.
    Posts
    2,063

    Default Re: My Carvin Experience

    I'm still in love with my Carvin system.

    I have a pair of LM15s (mains) and a pair of LM12s (monitors).
    Super lightweight, but imo... great sound.

    I play acoustic music, and for my application, I wouldn't change anything.
    The "plastic" cabinets are actually polypropylene, they drop test them from 8 feet. The old style cabinets that always seemed to crack and split open if you bumped them were made out of ABS, they would become brittle and fail. The new material seems to have lots of integrity.
    After several years of carrying around huge Yorkville cabs, I was a little skeptical of the plastic build, but now... when I'm setting up and packing away, I'm a believer!

    I have an 8-channel xp880 mixer/amp which is now discontinued.
    I also have an 8-channel C844u mixer with a DCM1204 4-channel power amp, also discontinued. I will interchange systems depending on the venue and stage layout.

    ie...
    This Friday I will be completely solo at a the Beck Cafe's outdoor stage in the Cleveland, OH (Lakewood) area so I will use the xp880 head at my side because of the convenience. Saturday, I am hosting an acoustic music-fest at Seneca Lake marina with about 8 acts playing throughout the day, so I'll be using the bigger system and put my mixer back of house via my snake.
    Lots of versatility with a pretty basic bit of gear.

    But I digress...

    I'm really happy with my gear!
    ...I hope you as satisfied with yours.
    -Bill
    http://songramp.com/harptech
    YOO-TOOB

    ...forever on the never-ending quest for TONE!!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Kingston, Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    226

    Default Re: My Carvin Experience

    Thanks for that Bill, it is reassuring.
    I'm keeping an open mind, its just I'm so used to the heavy equipment and when I pulled out the monitor and it barely weighed anything, I thought to myself "Man this is light".

    Once the mixer gets here I'll be able to test it fully.
    I basically bought this for my personal monitor for my keyboards, and to double as a rehearsal PA, and as long as all the keys sound rich, full and deep, I will be very happy.

    I spoke to a Carvin rep today and he said a powered sub added to this system would really make a big difference, so maybe I'll add one after a while.

    Thanks for your review.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Cambridge, Ohio, USA.
    Posts
    2,063

    Default Re: My Carvin Experience

    Hey, Crazy...
    one thing about the mixers... they're compact.
    But don't read that as cheap... these things sound great.

    The knobs are pretty small and fit kinda close together. I truly believe that Carvin uses some high quality components, but when I got my first mixer, the xp880, I was kinda blown away by how compact it was. My C844u uses the same knobs.

    However, when I started luggin' all that stuff around, (by myself, lol), my ego concerning "bigger is better" kinda disappeared.

    Just keep that "open mind"... LOL!!!!

    -Bill
    http://songramp.com/harptech
    YOO-TOOB

    ...forever on the never-ending quest for TONE!!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Kingston, Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    226

    Default Re: My Carvin Experience

    Tue June 15 ~

    Received my 'freebie' today, a wireless mic compliments of Carvin.
    Depending on how much you spend, they will throw in a free gift.

    It looks pretty nice. So far I've received everything except the mixer which is still on back-order. They expect it to be built next week sometime.

    Here is the free mic they sent me today (Thanks Carvin)

    http://www.carvinguitars.com/product...UX16-MC&cid=36

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    Royersford, Pennsylvania, USA.
    Posts
    5,929

    Default Re: My Carvin Experience

    Nice freeby!!
    Jack (Here is my old songramp page) http://sr.bondwaresite.com/homepage.php?userid=2487

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Kingston, Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    226

    Default Re: My Carvin Experience

    June 28th: Still waiting on the Mixer to be built.
    Called Carvin and they said 'maybe the end of this week.

    I made my displeaseure known and here is my main point of contention: (If any of you guys think I'm being unreasonable, please, I encourage you to chime in and give me a boot in the pants)

    I ordered this from Carvin's website on June 6th, I put the PA into the "Basket" thingy and checked out.
    The Check-out window showed "In Stock & Ready to Ship"

    Now if you are me, you think "Great, soon as they process the order they will ship it out".

    They shipped out the speakers, cables, and mics the very next day, but then I received an email from Carvin saying "Oh, the mixer is on back order, sorry for the delay".

    This to me is kind of a greasy move because had the website shown this system to be on back-order, I would've simply ordered another system.
    Had they waited to ship the entire order only when it was ready, they know full well I would've canceled, the entire experience so far gives me a bad taste in my mouth.

    I did complain to the Carvin rep the other day and he basically shrugged it off as "Oh well, the online store is not equipped to deal with the status in real time", like it's my fault?

    On a positive note, I ordered some tripod speaker stands from a company on Ebay last week, and got them in today. The Carvin LM153's sit on there perfectly. Gets them up at a nice height and off the floor.

    Here's a crappy pic from my phone.


    Anyhoo, we'll wait and see how much longer this is going to take, right now I'm not very pleased with Carvin because of the poor communication but I'll keep you posted on when the mixer gets here.

    Regards
    AJ
    Last edited by CrazyFoo; June 28th, 2010 at 07:45 PM.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Kingston, Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    226

    Default Re: My Carvin Experience

    Friday July 02 -

    Called Carvin today to inquire and found out the mixer is in transit and expected UPS delivery date is Tuesday July 06th.

    With regards to my entire experience I'm going to try to include everything so the whole experience is logged and documented, it might be helpful for future customers at a later date, or even for Carvin if they happen to read this.

    I think they could improve on their communication and notify the customer when an item on back-rder is finally shipped.
    Had I not called in to inquire, I would have no idea what is happening, and keeping the customer informed is important in any business situation.

    Also, today while visiting the Carvin site I noticed the system I ordered is now $100 less then what I paid 1 month ago.
    I called Carvin to request I be given the $100 refund, and after a slight hesitation, the rep on the phone agreed and said he would issue the credit.

    He did say this is not their normal policy but the fact that my system was ordered a month ago, and still not received by me was what I thought to be a valid point.

    I am impressed with how friendly they are on the telephone and how quickly you get an English speaking (easy to understand) person at the other end of the telephone.

    So far my overall impression with this company is a favorable one, and once the mixer gets here, I'll set it up, test it and provide a full review.

    Stay Tuned

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