I've just sent off a letter to Sony Head Office giving them 7 days to respond, so let's see what happens...
LETTER BEFORE ACTION
Laptop Model: VGN-SZ61MN (PCG-6S4M)
Place of Purchase: Sony Style UK Website
Date of Purchase:
Price Paid: £1414.01
Date Failed: Summer 2010
I write to you with reference to the above laptop, purchased from the Sony Style website. Unfortunately my laptop has failed due to what I believe to be a defective Nvidia graphics chip.
I have been in touch with both your telephone helpline and email support however neither channel was able to help me satisfactorily. They claim that since the laptop is out of warranty they cannot help.
I have spoken to a number of people who are well versed with regard to the problem my laptop is experiencing and have been informed that this problem is affecting thousands of laptops.
This problem is very well documented and is recognised by HP, Dell, Apple and Nvidia. A simple Google of “Nvidia Defect” will provide you with all the evidence you need as to the scale of the problem.
You have to appreciate I paid a lot of money for this laptop and would have expected it to have lasted far longer than it actually did.
If I do not receive a satisfactory resolution to this matter then I will have no alternative but to take action through the Small Claims Courts.
I am therefore giving you this last opportunity to remedy this situation. I am formally giving you 7 days from the date of this letter to either:
If you do not respond in the positive within this time then I will have no alternative but to obtain an engineer’s report, the costs of which will be claimed from yourselves.
I will then use that report, along with the myriad of articles of information that are available to pursue this matter through the legal system.
Please note that in this matter time is of the essence
Sony have acknowledged this problem with the Nvedia graphics chipset and extended the warranty upto four years on some laptop models. I got mine repaired after going through the same reminders, as yourself, from Sony that my laptop was out of warranty. After my persistance they collected it and took it away where they put a new motherboard in, a few weeks later that graphics chip packed it in again, I complained and had it collected again, going well since.
I hope this is of help. Be persistant and remind them of their promise to the world to extend their warranty for these known faulty chipsets.
I hope this is of some help.
You can find the contact details for vaio support by either clicking Support at the top of this page or by using the following link:Vaio support
Under Log-in option 1: Enter your vaio models serial number, which you should find on the bottom of your Vaio.
Then next Select Model..
Then click Log-In
Once logged select Get In Touch.
Then Click on the Out of Warranty tab, then Phone support.
If you want to contact one of Sony's authorised repairers to arrange a repair
Once logged select Get In Touch
Then Click on the Out of Warranty tab to locate the nearest location.
Just wondering if you've had a reply to your letter from 3rd november yet?
I still haven't had a reply to the original letter i sent on 11.10.10 so have gone back through the timely way of email support. Tried several times to contact me but the phone line is to bad with crackling and interference to hear what they are saying.
Now awaiting for my email response to see what can be done. Just wondering if you've had any luck?
Nothing yet, will wait until I am a bit less busy middle of next week to chase up. Have given up with email/telephone support, next port of call is an independent engineers report.
Pretty much the same, no reply to my letter sent on 11th october, and the email and phone support is painful. Email just keep asking the same questions and when they phone me you can't hear a thing due to interference and crackling on the line.
Now awaiting for another reply to see what they can do, think the engineers report is going to be the easiest option.
Got a reply from Sony on Friday. I quote "The chupset identified in the media as having the inherent fault is not the GPU used in any of our SZ chassis VAIOS..(sic)"
Slightly confusing as the 8400GS is used in models that Sony recognise in having a defect AND in the SZ...
Anyway they offered a 10% discount on the repair cost. Which made me laugh.
Now though, at least, I have an email. Get on to Darrell Huntley, email@example.com
I will be on to him in the latter part of next week, once work has calmed down a bit
Wow simon, seems you're getting further than me at least.
Still no reply to my letter... and as for the email support, it's a joke! just asking me the same questions over and over, and i'm pretty sure it's purposely now. The furthest i've got is them saying they'll pick it up and for me to tell them a pick up date, only for me to read at the bottom of the email hidden away 'the repair will be chargeable as it is out of warranty'. I've clearly stated on every email that i refuse to pay for any repair because it is not due to me.
As for the laptops we have not having the faulty chip is a load of crap, a lot of the laptops on the list of the extended warranty also have the GeForce 8400M GT graphics card.
Like many people are saying, Sony are a good company for other products, but never again for VAIO.
Might have to email this Darrell Huntley then if nothing improves quickly. Good luck with your case
I too have the Vaio VGN AR51e and have just developed the same problem. I am writing this with four 2" wide vertical multicoloured bars on the screen that I cannot move. So the only way ican use the laptop is to move whichever window I am using around so that I can see behind the bars. I'm getting eye strain. I am just wondering whether it is even worth bothering phoning Sony based on what you report. I am wondering whether getting in touch with the press and or the consumer association Which? would yield better results. I can see me vowing to boycott Sony in the same way. The RAC haven't had any new business from me in nearly 20 years and that's because they too had useless customer service. When will these MegaCorps realise it is in their long term interests to do right by their customers?. Sorry to rant. Good luck though and if you get anywhere, paritcularly as we have the same model please can you let me know? Likewise will do the same. By the way, do you know if the AR51e is on the extended warranty list? I haven't been able to find the list. Thanks.
By the way, do you know if the AR51e is on the extended warranty list? I haven't been able to find the list.
Sony released a statement confirming that some Vaio models can have distorted video, random characters or blank screen issues due to failure of the NVIDIA graphics chip.
The models concerned are as follows..
VGN-FZ11x, VGN-FZ18x, VGN-FZ21x, VGN-FZ31x, VGN-FZ38x
VGN-AR11x, VGN-AR21x, VGN-AR31x
Click on the following link to read the Sony announcement: Distorted video, random characters or blank screen issues due to failure of the NVIDIA graphics chip
Just a quick note to sing the praises of Sony EU repair service... I have a VGN AR41M which developed lots of vertical coloured lines on screen around 2 years ago - the problem got steadily worse until I was unable to use it when half of the screen turned black overnight. I bought it in the UK and have since moved to Spain. After a fair bit of worrying about finding the money to replace it (it was bought in 2007 and therefore out of warranty) I started to trawl messageboards to see if I could find anyone else who was experiencing the same problem. Seeing this thread gave me a little hope that I may be able to get it fixed. Although my model wasn't on the list, I thought I'd chance my arm and email them at the address I found on this thread - firstname.lastname@example.org . They were relatively quick to reply (within 2 working days) and said there would be no problem about collecting my laptop in Spain and couriering it to a repair centre. It took 8 days for it to be repaired - I dropped it with a courier on 18th Nov, it was sent to Alsace and repaired, and I picked it up on 26th Nov. All free of charge. And they cleaned it! I am absolutely thrilled, and hope that anyone else with the same NVIDIA fault manages to get it rectified as quickly and as stress-free as I have.
This sounds unbelievable! very rare. How did you go about this then?
As far as im concerned, Sony are unwilling to even consider a free repair, or even accept that it is the Nvidia problem, so how exactly did you do it!? and who did you speak to at customer support?
Hello everyone. Have just bought a two year old SONY VGN-NR21s/s and it has the same problem with the videochip.It has nVidia 8400m Gt. When i turn on my VAIO it shows strange lines on the screeen and doesn`t want to load windows. Blue screen appears.
I wrote to sony for two times already but no answer.
Looking forward in recieving any advice.
Hiya Mark - I was unable to make any phone contact as I couldn't call an 0905 number from abroad, so it was email contact all the way... a little tedious when you're impatient like me!
All I did was tell them the problem, then they emailed me a troubleshooting list I had to follow and reply back with the results - then they asked me where I wanted the courier to pick it up from!
The only member of staff that I dealt with was Ola Gaafar (Sony VAIO-Link Support Team)
Good luck x x x x