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In the last few days I've received several parcels containing the parts for a Shuttle PC. I ordered most of them from Overclockers, the few that they didn't have in stock from Ebuyer and memory from Crucial.
Of the three the award for the best packaging goes to Overclockers. Their box was double-walled (which is firmer and stronger than single-walled), components like the CD-RW/DVD combo and the HDD (both OEM) were so well wrapped in layers of large bubblewrap that I'm sure they could have been dropped from a great height and still have survived (not that I was tempted to try it). The space in the box was filled with a large piece of packing polystyrene cut to fit to keep the box rigid.
Crucial used to ship their memory in foam but this time my two sticks came in a box with cardboard spacers to hold them in place. The memory was fine so obviously the style of packaging does work but it doesn't look as though it would be as secure.
The Ebuyer packaging was a nightmare. The box was only single-walled and had been bashed so that one whole corner was badly crushed. I marked the courier's sheet "box dented, contents not checked". I assumed that there would be enough packing around the contents to ensure their safety. I was wrong - the only padding inside was air-bags and most of them were either deflated or had not been inflated in the first place (some of them certainly look as though they have never had any air in them). One item, a floopy drive, had no wrapping at all, no bubble-wrap, no cardboard, not even a plastic bag, even the air bags around it were deflated (or uninflated) ones.
Unfortunately that was the very item in the damaged corner and two of the power connector pins were bent. In fact I was able to straighten them and install the drive but I wouldn't have been happy if it had required returning. I later found the anti-static bag that I assume had once held the floppy drive in the other corner of the box so obviously the drive had slipped out of it.
I shall buy from Overclockers and Crucial again.
I would agree about packaging and security.I receive over a weekly period a number of 'Jiffy' bag items.Whilst the jiffy bag is a good and cheap invention, it cannot solve all problems, especcially if the content inside is more fragile.I always sign 'unchecked' on all deliveries, as this save arguments at a later stage.
I e-mailed Overclockers to thank them for their speedy and well packaged delivery and mentioned the European cable and manual. I didn't ask for a new one as I have bought a Euro to UK adapter, I was just suggesting that it might be a good idea to check the boxes to spare future customers any problems. I have had a reply, not only have they apologised but they are sending a new cable.
I also contacted Ebuyer about the damaged box and bent power pins on the floppy drive .... I haven't had a reply.
Crucial have a well deserved reputation for good service. I have ordered from them twice. On both occasions my order has arrived within 24 hours.
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