During my freshmen year of college, I asked anyone who would listen to never by from TigerDirect (as best they could) again because of atrocious customer service that led me to being out nearly $800 (which I did eventually get back by having my credit card issue charge backs). Now, I’m going to ask anyone who will listen to avoid buying OCZ products. Since I built my new computer, I’ve had nothing but trouble with their RAM and their customer support feels like I’m talking to a high-school nerd who has next to no knowledge of actual computer hardware.
If nothing else, you shouldn’t buy their products because the quality has suffered dramatically from their fabrication and product line changes. Out of 3 kits of RAM (9 DIMMs) I’ve had 1 usable kit (4 DIMMs actually failed). While that is technically a 44% failure rate, the failure rate to me is 67% since I’m forced to RMA the whole kit.
The above says nothing about the quality of the actual working RAM. At the exact factory specifications (8-8-8-24 @ 1600MHz), the RAM performs as expected. However, if loosen the timings a bit (9-9-9-26 @ 1440Mhz) the RAM is remarkably unstable – even with a background in electrical engineering I can’t come up with a bullshit excuse for that one. I might also mention here that you have to know something about how RAM works to really even get what you want out of this. The auto-detect settings from the SPD is 7-7-7-18 @ 1066MHz, 1.50V. While you probably won’t damage the RAM by just playing with the ratio to get it up to full speed, you certainly won’t get it stable…
As a personal favor, I’m asking that anyone who reads doesn’t buy OCZ again because of their terrible customer service. No matter how you try to get help, they send you to their expert forum to sift through an amazing pile of crap to try and get help. If you’re lucky, someone approved by OCZ might reply to your post in a week… if you aren’t… some jackass who dicks around with settings once in a while will make an erroneous recommendation that will not only waste your time, but the OCZ approved members will want you to respond to before they help. Not only that, but they’re not likely to read everything you actually bother to type and may repeatedly ask you to do something that you’ve clearly already done or ask for information that you probably provided in your last reply. The worst offense to me was that they recommended that I run my RAM 8-8-8-24 @ 1066MHz and expected that to be acceptable to me (assuming it was stable).
Once you dig yourself out of that pile of crap, its on to their email based RMA process where some new jackass will try to debug the issue again. Expecting this, I tried to head the issue off and explained all of my testing and gave a link to my forum thread… yeah… why bother working when you can waste your customer’s time? This particular person did ask me to do something different, however. He wanted me to make sure I got through at least 6 passes of memtest86+ on each individual stick of RAM… because I just have all the free time in the world. Obviously, I didn’t get through the process without killing myself, but the whole thing seemed very anti-customer to me.
Unfortunately, I got to experience the process a second time. The RAM I received via RMA actually failed worse than the first kit I send back. Either their product is super fragile, or they’ve just stopped caring altogether. This time around, I used the RMA directions from the first case to contact their support system again (it turns out that they don’t really care about the forum, they just tell everyone to go to it). I gave the exact test case that failed (an individual kit, 3 DIMMs, 8-8-8-24 @ 1600MHz) and requested that since this was an RMA for an item received via RMA that they pay the return shipping. I get a response back suggesting that I might have a problem since I’m using all 4 slots on my motherboard (I actually have 6… triple channel memory kit and all… except I told them I was only using 3 DIMMs) and I should try testing again at the stock speeds. I actually hung my head in resentment for a couple minutes. I tried again to explain the test and this time receive the notification that my RMA was approved. I replied with the required details, but included at the top another request for OCZ to pay return shipping. I received my RMA # without them even telling me to fuck off and ship it myself.
Sometimes I wonder if I have a tone of voice or a way of wording things that just makes people not want to help me. Between this and experiences like me trying to buy a house, I seriously question whether or not I should just go hide under a bridge somewhere. That, or I was Chairman Mao in a past life…