04.10.07

The plot thickens

Posted in fastmemorymanscam at 8:49 pm by blog

So still having no luck getting my money back from “fastmemoryman” aka emartbuy, i decided to do some research.
It turns out, that he has defrauded many more people, the evidence is all over the internet… A quick google for “fastmemoryman” reveals several people who have been ripped off by him.

It would seem that he bulk buys tech items, computer memory and memory cards etc, which varies wildly in terms of quality and source. Some of it is good quality branded goods, while other stuff is cheap generic garbage. He attains his high ebay score by selling some of the quality goods at a minimal profit, while also selling cheap unbranded garbage and sometimes masquerading it as branded goods. In my case, he got hold of some DDR SDRAM modules which happened to use Micron branded components.
Now these particular components in question, are intended by Micron to be used to construct 512MB memory modules, some unethical and nameless company has bought a bulk load of these modules, and double stacked them to produce 1GB “high density” modules. Now this is all well and good, cheap unbranded generic memory with poor compatibility has it’s place and if he sold it as that it wouldn’t be so bad. The problem stems from his method of selling, he claims this memory is manufacturerd by Micron, who are a reputable memory manufacturer. Now while some of the components may have been manufacturerd by Micron the final module is not, and the components are being used outside of Micron recommendations. To use a car analogy, A Ford is still a Ford even when it has Michelin tyres fitted. It does not become a Michelin car simply because some of the components were made by Michelin. Ford assemble the various components into a cohesive unit recognised as a car, and Michelin could not be held responsible if the tyres Ford selected for use on their car were intended for different uses, for instance if Ford put Michelin branded tyres intended for use on pedal bikes on the car.

A good description of what high density memory is, why it is almost always unbranded, and why reputable manufacturers such as Micron or Samsung would never put their name to it can be found here:
http://reviews.ebay.com/Myth-Low-Density-vs-High-Density-memory-modules_W0QQugidZ10000000001236178

Another way he scams unsuspecting buyers, is in the postage.
I bought 3 memory modules from him, and he charged me £6 (6 British Pounds) per item for the postage, even tho i purchased 3 items at once. These items arrived in a single envelope (he saved money on packaging) and with postage stamps attached to a value of £0.95 (the cost to ship a single module in the same way is also £0.95). Thus, he reduced his shipping costs by two thirds by sending the three items at once, and yet passed none of these savings on to the purchaser.
Also, £6 is rather an unreasonable cost shipping, considering that the padded envelope can be worth no more than £0.30, and let’s add in £0.75 handling – a very high estimate. This makes the shipping cost to be £2 for a single item, and £2 for 3 items. Yet he charges £6 for one item, and £18 for 3 items, netting himself £16 profit at no extra work.

Add to this his “returns policy” which states that seller pays for return postage and does not receive their original shipping costs back. Thus, even if the buyer returns the item and receives a refund according to this policy, fastmemoryman makes a profit of £4 on each defective memory module sold and returned, while still having the defective module to use against another unsuspecting buyer.

Incidentally, this policy is illegal under the UK’s “Sale Of Goods Act” which states that a merchant selling an item must cover any and all costs associated with repair, reimbursement or replacement of defective goods, for the protection of consumers.

So back to my case, despite repeatedly requesting to send the item to the UK address, fastmemoryman insisted that i must send it internationally at my own cost. However, i called up the company he uses for distribution in the UK and they were more than happy to accept a return. So why would he say otherwise? The only reason can be, that he wants to discourage people from claiming refunds or replacement by hiking up the shipping cost.

So i sent the item to the UK address, and it got forwarded back to fastmemoryman. I then receive an email stating:

Your returned item was received, tested, and determined to be in working order. It seems there is a compatibility problem since the module is working on our end. The
module you ordered is high density (dual in line 128×4). Your motherboard only supports low density modules (64×8).

Your Dell Dimension 3000 has an INTEL 865 chipset, your Dimension 3100 has and INTEL 915GV, and your MSI K8T Neo-FSR has a VIA 8235/8237 chipset that only support low
density memory. The specs may be right but you ordered high density and you need low density. Below is the compatibility list from your auction. You can see that
these chipset are not listed:

Known to work with:

VIA P4X266A,
VIA KT266 (except ASUS KT266)
VIA KT333 (except ASUS KT333)
VIA KT600 (except ASUS KT600)
VIA PT800
VIA PT880
SIS 645
SIS 648, 648FX
SIS 746FX
SIS 756
VIA KM400
K8T800
K8M800
KT 880
KT 400 (except ASUS KT400)
KT 400A (except ASUS KT400A)
SIS 661FX
SIS 655
SIS 650GX
SIS 650
NFORCE 3 250GB
ULI Chipsets
Intel 915
Geforce 6100
NFORCE 4 SLI

You can either upgrade to a compatible low density module for an additional $18 USD each which includes shipping, or receive a refund according to our refunds policy
(see Ebay) for your returned item. Please make payment at the link below. In the payment for box we need “PAYMENT FOR 1GB LOW DENSITY UPGRADE “.

So here he tries to claim that the machines in which i have tested the memory are not compatible. He claims that the Dimension 3100 has an Intel 915GV chipset, and yet the Intel 915 is listed as being compatible, you’d think these chipsets would be close enough together as to be virtually the same. He also claims, that my MSI K8T Neo-FSR uses an incompatible chipset, in this case a VIA 8235/8237. Now, someone less stubborn or with less technical knowledge may simply accept this, and pay him extra or claim a partial refund (and therefore he profits via his extortionate shipping and gets to sell the lowgrade memory to some other unsuspecting victim). But i thought i’d dig into it further. It turns out, that the VIA 8235/8237 chips are not full motherboard chipsets, and that they are “South Bridge” chips, which are the motherboard components that controll USB, IDE, SATA and the like. As opposed to the “North Bridge” chips which are what interface between the CPU and Memory.
So, i find the MSI specs page for my K8T Neo-FSR motherboard, which is at:
http://www.msicomputer.com/product/p_spec.asp?model=K8T_Neo-FSR
Now if you look closely at that spec, you will see it uses a VIA K8T800 chipset, the same VIA K8T800 chipset which is clearly listed as being compatible on his original listing.

So he has tried to trick me into thinking my motherboard is not among the machines listed as being compatible, even tho it is.
He has also failed, despite repeated requests, to detail exactly how he tested the memory and came to the conclusion that it was not defective. I already stated that the memory would in some cases function for several hours before causing a crash, if all he has done is inserted the memory and let the machine do the usual crude memory test most PC’s do at startup, then of course it would appear to be working.

I will make more posts as and when there is progress, for now i will make one last request for a full refund, before reporting this to UK Trading Standards.
I have also taken it upon myself to report fastmemoryman’s fraudulent listings to ebay, that is the listings where he is mislabelling a low grade unbranded high density memory module as having been produced by a reputable brand, and i am in the process of contacting these memory manufacturers to inform them of how this guy is misrepresenting their brands with low quality goods.

4 Comments »

  1. Jason Bone said,

    April 19, 2007 at 7:36 am

    Can you let me have the address of the uk distribution office for my return. I will also register my complaint with ebay and UK trading standards. The more people that do, the better the case is against them.

  2. john said,

    May 4, 2007 at 8:00 am

    Hi i am also in the process of trying to obtain a refund from this fraudster via paypal i am glad i did not wait the 45 days he wanted me to , i bought a motherboard and chip bundle that never arrived he sent a tracking number that the royal mail claerly state did not enter their system , in other words was not sent at all , i am in the process of trying to obtain all the info i can and then i am reporting him to the fbi internet fraud center , i suggest you all do the same the more people that report him the more notice they will take
    john

  3. Antonio said,

    May 6, 2007 at 3:10 am

    Thanks John,
    Please be VERY CAREFUL in dealing with Paypal as I suspect they are working together with fastmemoryman. I took my complaint to Paypal as well after writing e-mails to the seller and not getting any satisfactory answers. However, after such a long wait, I finally got my money back but lost my money in returning the wrong item to the seller. Paypal tells me that they cannot force the seller to refund me the return shipping and that my other choice was simply to accept the cheaper item I got from the seller. I have concluded that Paypal’s Buyer Protection Plan is worth s–t!! Paypal and E-bay protects fastmemoryman (emartbuy) because this cheat is giving them a lot of business…which in my opinion makes E-Bay and Paypal accomplices to the crime. BUYERS BEWARE!!!!!

  4. James said,

    August 8, 2007 at 1:12 pm

    Hello,
    I had the same problem, he sent me the wrong memory for my laptop and when I sent it back to him he tells me that I need to send an additional $45 USD for the correct memory. It is laughable because the memory he sent would not physically fit into any laptop made on this planet, yet he claims it is ‘as advertised’. They are running a real shady operation in my opinion and I am waiting to see what Paypal does for me.
    James

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