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Thread: e-Shine: you get what you pay for

  1. #1
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    e-Shine: you get what you pay for

    I have seen several threads showing scrubber builds using the e-Shine Systems 50W fixtures. I recently acquired a pair of these to supplement my benchmark testing of my custom-built fixtures. Plus I just wanted to see what they were like. I have to say that they do work just fine functionally, from what I can tell so far. However, if you expect any kind of coherent customer service and technical support, you will be sadly disappointed.

    I am not posting this to hack on their product line, as I have not really tested it yet. It appears to be a good, inexpensive LED grow light. Dollar for dollar, it is probably worth what you pay for. This is especially true considering the technology is changing at such a rapid pace. Why pay an arm and a leg for something that you might replace in a few years?

    I am posting this so that you, as a potential purchaser, know what to expect. If you know exactly what you want and have no questions, it's probably a great place to buy. I always have a lot of questions. So I think I'm currently this guy's worst nightmare :twisted:

    My representative was "Peter." I doubt that is his real name however, as the invoice I eventually received shows his name as "Peter Pan". Seriously. I am not kidding.

    During our first round of conversations, I asked them if they made a fixture for another company that had a similar looking fixture. He claimed they did. I called the other manufacturer and asked, and he said the housing is generic and they make everything else themselves. So when I e-mailed Peter, he backpedaled and said is was another similar sounding company that they make fixtures for...ok...

    Next, I tried the find out what it would cost to get a fixture customized. I was trying to get pricing to see how good the pricing was that I was getting from my US manufacturer. Here's how that exchange went:

    ME:
    The first fixture I wish to customize is the ES-100W-3GP.
    I wish to have 2 different fixtures, customized as follows:
    #1 will have 90 660nm LEDs and 10 435nm LEDs
    #2 will have 90 630nm LEDs and 10 455nm LEDs
    The second fixture I wish to customize is the ES-50W-3GP
    I wish to have 2 different fixtures, customized as follows:
    #1 will have 45 660nm LEDs and 5 435 nm LEDs.
    #2 will have 45 630nm LEDs and 5 455nm LEDs.
    Please provide pricing for the above fixtures.
    I also wish to know if it is possible to request a specific arrangement of LEDs. For instance, if I want a specific ratio of 660nm : 630nm : 435nm in a specific arrangement, are you able to do this, and how much would it cost?
    PETER:
    The first fixture which you showed me get a same price is $150; the second fixture is $90.
    In fact, we can supply the Blue, White, Green, IR, UV, Red, Orange and Violet and so on; you can option them, or you also can supply some color led which you need, we can think about it whether we can make or not. All the color get a common price, except the Violet and IR need to pay an extra fee. So for the price of 660nm,630m and 435nm, I need to the led quantity of 435nm, then I can show you the precise price, thank you.
    Tell me your specific arrangement, then we can try our best to help you, also for win-win.
    Hope we can make a long-term, stable and good business.
    ME:
    If the 630, 660, 435, and 460nm LEDs are all the same price, then why are the fixtures more expensive than you originally quote me, which was $125 for the 100W and $75 for the 50W?
    PETER:
    Sorry for the misunderstanding, I said that have same price is the 660nm, 435nm and 630nm, 455nm these two fixture get a same price; the $125 and $75 are the standard version, not the customize.
    ME:
    I guess to me it doesnít make sense that if I want to switch 10 LEDs on one fixture and 90 on another, that the same price will be the same for both.
    So letís clarify this:
    Please quote me a price for each of the following fixtures:
    #1: ES-100W-3GP with 10 425nm or 435nm blues instead of 10 455nm blues (reds stay the same as in the original fixture)
    #2: ES-100W-3GP with 90 630nm reds instead of 90 660nm reds (blues stay the same as in the original fixture)
    Please specific which blue LEDs you have available: 425 or 435. Either will probably work, or possible a mixture of both.
    PETER:
    About the cumtomize, we have a meeting to get a uniform rule today, which is the Violet 370-420nm need to pay $3 pcs, the IR 730/850nm need to pay $2 pcs; have to pay an extra fee of $8 (12-200W) or $15(300-800W) if the colors exceed 4 kinds. I think you are not confused this time, is it right?
    We supply the blue 450-460nm, we can do our best to help you if you like the 425nm or 435nm.
    So...what??? IR? Was I not clear in asking what I wanted?

    Several months went by and I decided to order a few standard fixtures. Here's how this went.

    ME:
    Please send me a price list for your 3G grow lights.
    PETER:
    It is my honor to send the pricelist to you, showed our retailers' price to you. Cause I am sure you are not ending users, so I can apply that price to you when you order, also can apply a special price if you order more. Hope we can build a long-term, stable and good business relation.
    Attached the pricelist to you, pls kindly check it.
    ME:
    How much is shipping for 2 of the ES-50W-3GB
    How much is shipping for 4 of the ES-50W-3GB
    PETER:
    The shipping for 2 units is 75.1 USD; shipping for 4 units is 128.5 USD.
    Our lights use good led chip, with good quality, you can try it, I think you will like it very much.
    ME:
    The shipping seems a little high. How about 4 of the ES-50W-3GB units for $68.00 US each, and $110 for shipping? Can you do that?
    PETER:
    About the price, which I can give you 68usd per unit, but the shipping which is quoted from the shipping company, I can not help you; you know, this is busy season, so the a little high.
    ME:
    Yeah but I figured you could do something since I have a buddy who just asked you for a quote for shipping 4 units and someone told him $122 or $123. I find it strange that we can both ask about the same thing and get different prices. Why is that?
    PETER:
    About the shipping, which is a little different, what kind of shipping you use? How to pack it? I am sorry for the price of 50x1w, which is 80 USD per unit, the price 70USD, which I quoted to you is the price of 25x3w. Very sorry about it.
    ME:
    No itís not! Itís right on the price list you sent me, it says $68 per unit!
    What are you talking about here, the shipping price or the per-unit price?
    PETER:
    I am very sorry for the price, I make mistake, you order the grow bar, but I quoted the aqua light price to you. Yes, is 68USD per unit. About the shipping, if you like it pack with no strong, I also can quote to you with 122 or 123usd; but I really hope can pack it stronger. You can make your decision, I pack it stronger for my clients, so all the lights are safe.
    ME: (getting a little irritated here)
    What? Of course I want you to pack it properly. Why would I want you to skimp on packing?
    What I was asking is how you can quote one person $122.50 for shipping 4 units, but quote ME $128.50. If youíre using the same shipping company, you should be giving everyone the same price!
    PETER:
    I am very sorry for the shipping, I think is my mistake. I am wondering what you say, I do not know whether I quoted a different shipping or not, so I check it again. The two different shipping fitted with two different shipping ways, the shipping of 122.5 USD is via the DHL, the shipping of 128.5 USD is via the Fedex. I really do not know why I quoted diiferent ways with same country, we usually quoted the cheapper one to customers; I really sorry for that inconvience to you, pls forgive my mistake.
    ME:
    Ok, thank you for clearing that up. I would like to buy 4 of the ES-50W-3GB. I will be gone for the rest of the day. Please advise me as to how to purchase.
    PETER:
    Pls kindly tell your precise shipping information, like the shipping address with zip code, telphone number; if you will be gone for the rest of the days, you can tell me the full name of contact peoson who you think can help you. The total time will be 10 to 15day, if you think you can come back after 10days, you do not need to ask others to help you. What is your idea?
    I sent my information and got an invoice attachment that listed the per item amount, shipping cost, paypal fees (ADDED TO IT), etc. The problem was, the math was completely non-sensical. Fixtures were $272, Shipping $122.50, Total $394.50, paypal fees (3.9% + $0.30) $145.00. What you say?

    ME:
    Something is wrong with this invoice. There is a line for ďpaypal amountĒ that shows ďFee 3.9% + USD 0.3Ē, then an amount of $145.00.
    #1 The math incorrect.
    #2 I do not feel I should have to pay your fees for doing business through paypal.
    I have never been asked to pay the paypal fee when making a purchase. Never. That is considered a ďcost of doing businessĒ on the sellerís end.
    If you intend to make up for that fee, then you should be figuring that into the cost of your product. Do not charge me.
    I will pay you $272.00 for the 4 light fixtures and $122.50 shipping as quoted. Please send me an invoice stating so.
    PETER:
    I am sorry for the mistake, thanks figure out it to me.
    For the Paypal charge, you have to pay it if you order from us; all our customers like that, so I also should do that. The paypal charge is depends on the order, we do not add it into the cost of the lights.
    Got another invoice. But, the paypal fee was more than 3.9% + $0.30. So I called him on it

    ME:
    Please check it again:
    $394.50 x 0.039 = $15.39 + $0.30 = $15.69.
    Total should be $394.50 + 15.69 = $410.19 not $410.80
    PETER:
    I calculated it with: $394.5/0.961=410.5+0.3=410.8 USD, but your calculation is also ok. If you decide to order now, then we sell to you via 410.00 USD, ok?
    ME:
    I will be sending the money later today. I will e-mail you after I send it.
    Just so you know, 1.0 / 0.961 = 1.041. Thatís 4.1%, not 3.9%. That is not the correct way to calculate that fee. This is why your number was wrong. You need to calculate the fee by multiplying the total by 1.039.
    PETER:
    It is ok, I will calculate the fee via your way. Yes, pls kindly let me know after you pay, then I can arrange the production for you.
    At this point, I sent the payment. I got the fixtures 10 days later, which included both Christmas and New Years and both weekends, so I considered the shipping to be quite fast. A bonus goes to the DHL guy who figured out that the shipping department misprinted my street address. They were shipped in 2 separate boxes, 2 fixtures per box, the boxes were double-walled cardboard with zero clearance (no peanuts or other foam). The fixtures were in white boxes with plenty of foam padding though. I'm pretty sure they would have survived a significant drop without damage. Packed about the same as most other light fixtures I've purchased, including the Nova Extreme 1127 T5HO (which showed up busted).

    Then, we start into the conversation I am currently having with him about how these things don't really ever shut off. That's right, if you plug them in and turn them off, they don't really shut off. I have never seen an LED fixture do this. My point here in this conversation was just to point out the issue to him. I started to get irritated when he was giving me stupid answers.

    ME:
    Got the fixtures yesterday. The DHL guy figured out the correct address Ė you had 4855 **th St instead of 485 S (South) **th St. Everything arrived in god condition (I have not opened the second box yet)

    Also are you aware that these fixtures light up very dimly when turned off? They actually pull 9W when off. To me, this indicates a substandard driver that is leaking current. Of course, this does not matter if you run them through a timer that cuts the power to the device completely.
    PETER:
    When the light turn off, the light still light up very dimly? I sold many before, but no one tell me like that. Sorry for that.
    I have talked this question to our engineers, who say that is the fans are still working, so actually pull 9w-12 watt. They say that is normal, cause the electrolysis, several min later is ok.
    ME: (irritated again)
    No, you didnít talk to your engineers donít lie. Take one into a dark room and plug it in. The LEDs turn on. The fans are NOT running. I can take a video of this and prove it to you. This has been verified by another purchaser of the exact same fixture, who bought the fixture from you months ago. He is the one with the watt meter that told me it was pulling 9w.
    Like I said, most people run them off a timer so they would never know, because a timer cuts the power to the fixture.
    I have other LED fixtures. When I turn those on, and then turn them off, the lights stay on dimly, but then will completely shut off in a few seconds as the voltage drains from them. This is not what I am talking about. I plugged the fixture in, fresh out of the box, and the LEDs come on WITHOUT ever pressing the power button. There is no power to the fans.
    PETER:
    I am sorry to hear that, I really do not lie you, I have told to our engineers. You means that when you cut off all the power supply, the LEDs still light up? Does it all turn off when seconds later? I do not know why happen, I will talk to them again later.
    Pls trust me, I really never lie to you. Anyway, sorry for all.
    ME:
    I decided to show you this video to prove to you what I was saying. The fixture is still good for my purpose as I will control it with a timer. I just thought you should be aware of this issue. I am not asking for a refund or anything like that.
    PETER:
    I do not mean that, it is good for us to tell that information. I have told that to our engineers, but who told me that is normal, it will shut off mins later. Can you tell me how can I do? changed the better drivers? or other things?
    PETER:
    Very sorry, cause we can not use youtube.com in China.
    ME:
    No, the lights do not completely turn off. If you start with the fixture off, then plug it in, the LEDs come on dimly. Try it yourself.
    The example you are describing it true if the lights are on, then you turn them off. The LEDs should slowly dim, stay on very low light for a few seconds, then turn off completely. Your fixtures do not even do this.
    The problem likely is that you switch does not actually disconnect the power from the driver. Some power is still making itís way to the driver board with the switch in the off position.
    PETER:
    I have told to my engineers, we will try our best to imrpove it. In fact, the fans still work, when you turn off the light. The switch do not control the fans, means when you connect the power supply, the fans will work.
    ME:
    No they donít! the fans are loud and obviously are NOT ON when you plug in the fixture! They turn on and off by the switch!
    I haven't heard back on my last response yet. But seriously, know your product. Or at least find out a real answer before shooting back some BS response. I suppose these guys are probably in some kind of "boiler room" type of environment getting paid peanuts though, and it doesn't help communicating through some kind of translator.

    However, they cannot be totally to blame for the information they are getting. If you look through the e-Shine website, which is nice and flashy and all, it's packed with nonsense sentences and terms, and grammatical errors from reverse translation. It is painfully obvious that they could care less to hire someone to simply correct their errors. Seriously, they could pay me for 2 days of work and I could just go through their entire site and mark up their errors with corrections.

    The other thing I found strange is that there is no place to click and buy on their site. You have to send your payment via paypal to "paypal@eshinesystems.com" and then follow that up with an e-mail to your rep (that you online chat with) telling him you sent the payment. You would think with that fancy website that they could send you a paypal invoice through the paypal system. If I hadn't seen anyone else with these fixtures operating (on threads on this and other sites) I would have been nervous about sending $400 via paypal to who knows who in China. So if that makes you nervous, I understand - but I got my fixtures just fine.

    Again, I wrote this just so that anyone who is considering buying these fixtures is aware of how their process works. Also, what to watch for (scrutinize that invoice!).

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    Re: e-Shine: you get what you pay for

    Something else I forgot to add. On the website, they advertise that you can 'daisy-chain' their fixtures together, up to 10 or something. However, the fixtures only have the power connection on one end. There is a knockout with a plastic plug it in on the other end of the fixture. So it seems that either their daisy-chain cable goes in and out of the same connector, or you have to custom-order the fixture with a connection point at each end. I was hoping to be able to use one plug-in. I guess I should have asked, but I'm afraid of the conversation I would have to go through.

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    Re: e-Shine: you get what you pay for

    Let me guess, you haven't dealt with companies out of China first hand much have you? What you describe (from initial interactions asking questions, to purchasing, to support) is how 100% of all my interactions with every single company I have ever dealt with out of china. Not just talking in the LED field, but also in other electronics fields. You never order anything from China unless your willing to call it a total loss if it doesn't work out for you. You are correct about ZERO support and ZERO chance of getting any type of service or refund if something bad should happen to the item you bought... but again, I can say this about every company from China I have ever dealt with, so this isn't unique to E-Shine systems by any means.

    When are these test going to be done with your lighting?

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    Re: e-Shine: you get what you pay for

    No, you're absolutely right, I haven't really dealt with any companies out of China. I did go into it with the "total loss" factor in mind though.

    I am starting to work up plans for my test, then I have to build a few things. It's going to be at least a month or two longer, minimum. I've got a lot of $$ invested in fixtures so I am for sure going to run the test.

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    Re: e-Shine: you get what you pay for

    My scruber leds also lights very dim when disconnected, but only if I touch heatsink with my finger. Leds connected via Meanwell driver and timer.

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    Re: e-Shine: you get what you pay for

    That could be attributed to electrostatic discharge from your body. Do they stay lit? These stay lit as long as you have them plugged in. I made a video and put it on YouTube but made it 'private' just for them to see. I'm going to go ahead and make it public and post the link...

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    Re: e-Shine: you get what you pay for


  8. #8
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    Re: e-Shine: you get what you pay for

    Ace25 is on the money with how the China folks can be. I had them making several Flexplates and Flywheels for me. I thought this would be a good business venture!! This was going to be great!!!! Well I did make money, just enough to cover my expenses and a little more but, if you tally up the hours I invested I may not have broke even.
    150G. Reef/Mix
    125G. 3 Regular Oscars/1 Jack Dempsey
    75G. 20+ Africans
    40G. Fish/Reef. Algae Scrubbers on ALL my SW
    10G. SW Fish/Reef.
    10G. SW Hospital/new fish quarantine/pod breeder tank
    6 stage RO/DI system 200 GPD.

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    Re: e-Shine: you get what you pay for

    I bought 2 of the same fixtures (but customised in black casing). I dealt with Robin and he was very helpful and I didn't have any problems at all.
    However, it was clear that if you contacted them and started dealing with someone else they could not continue and had to refer you back to the person who originally quoted.
    My guess is they don't even work directly for e-shine and are just selling agents hence they don't all have the same product knowledge or even have the same packaging methods!

    Still, my units turn off just fine, however the fans are very noisy indeed but I could swap the fans myself if it were a problem but I run them at night when I'm not in the room.
    The only strange thing about mine is they each have 2 switches and 1 switch doesn't do anything. I've read elsewhere that the LEDs were split in 2 banks and each switch controlled each bank, this is not the case for mine though.

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    I'm guessing that the black casing is typically used for regular display tank fixtures, which have a Royal Blue and Cool White parts, and separate switches for both (and usually separate power feeds). The larger fixture I had custom made (by someone else) has 2 switches and 2 power plugs. So they probably just used that housing with the guts from the white one. I've heard that about the fans before, but the other fixture I have has similar fans and they aren't any quieter. Pretty sure that's industry standard for fans at the CFM required.

    PS what was "Robin"s last name on your invoice? Hood?

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