I just posted my first message on this forum and I'm following up with this one after speaking with a Bel rep (for the second time tonight).
I know the warranty / 3rd party dealer issue has been raised on this forum. But here's what I gathered tonight while looking at the Bel 995.
MSRP is $299.95
According to the Bel sales rep, if the 995 is purchased for a price BELOW $269.95, it is no longer authorized and therefore the warranty will not be honored. I noticed Roy offers the 995 for this exact price, so good for him and his customers...he offers a product below MSRP, but, with the warranty intact.
However, the issue becomes more convoluted. When I asked the Bel rep for a list of authorized resellers, he would not tell me. Instead, he told me: "If the 995 is sold for less than $269.95, then it is NOT authorized." He told me that to ensure warranty coverage, I need to buy direct (through Bel), through an authorized dealer such as Roy, or through a retailer such as Circuit City. And that the selling price cannot be lower than $269.95.
I then asked the Bel rep: "What if the selling price is ABOVE your $269.95 threshold, does this AUTOMATICALLY mean I'm working with an authorized dealer and therefore covered with the mfg warranty?" The Bel rep's answer: same as above (buy direct, through an authorized dealer - even though there is no list of authorized dealers, or through a retailer like CC).
Okay...so I did a little digging. You guys ready for this?
1) <Link removed due to Rule Violation>
If you look at the bottom of the page, the CC logo is shown, which implicitly means CC is an authorized dealer. Guess what happens when you go to CC and try to buy the 995?
See here -> <Link Removed due to Rule Violation>
WHOOPS! CC is selling the 995 for $229.99. But wait, I thought any price for the 995 BELOW $269.95 comes from an UNauthorized dealer. Hmmm.
2) Bel's warranty policy -> http://www.beltronics.com/belwarranty.html
See item #4 in Warranty Exclusions "Your receipt or proof-of-purchase is from a non-authorized dealer or internet auction site including E-bay, U-bid, or other non-authorized resellers."
Does this policy state anything relating to "below $269.95" in order to be authorized for a warranty? Does it state which dealers are authorized to sell Bel products? The auction part is clear enough, however, so +1 for Bel here.
I have to admit, I'm appalled at the business "immaturity" of Bel and it's confusing, contradictory policies. I mentioned in my first post that Bel needs to look into its channel policies, but it goes FAR beyond that. The company may have leading products from a technical standpoint, but its business practices leave much to be desired.
Personally, I'm bummed. I wanted to buy the 995. And my second choice was the 8500 X50. But I will not buy from this company.