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AVA Direct / Too good to be true

1 1750 Highland Rd., Suite #4Twinsburg, OH, United States Review updated:
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I specifically picked AVA Direct because of all the steller reviews on ResellerRatings.com, but not only was that a big mistake but I'm HIGHLY suspicious that there isn't some sort of incestuous relationship going on between them. Almost every review on ResellerRating for AVA Direct is positively glowing, and my 1 negative review gets pulled for 'review' and then disappears, even though it's supposed to appear 48 hrs later, meanwhile 12 glowing reviews pop up that were written long after mine.

I payed $4200.00(more than my last 3 cars cost!) for a buggy, malfunctioning, slow piece of garbage, and was talked into settling for choices I did not want by high level employees that are nothing more than fast talking con men.

When you're buying your big bucks notebook, everything's peaches and cream and anything's possible. Once they have your money however, 'this' isn't possible and 'that' isn't compatible and they never implied 'that', etc, etc.

I actually pulled over $4000.00 back from AlienWare because the company seemed so shady and had terrible reviews and sent it to AVA' instead based on their too good to be true reputation.

I had been calling the company to ask questions and figure out the best system I could afford and was having terrible luck getting through to there tech rep 'Chris'. He never answers the phone no matter what time you call and always calls you back at the worst times when your in the middle of work, obviously at HIS convenience. Yet the sales peaple always say he's the one to answer your questions.

So finally after several weeks of this I asked if there was anyone else I could speak to and was transferred to 'Misha', the head sales rep. In what was problably an omen I now see, upon telling Misha that at this time I did not want to give personal information about myself over the phone as I did with Alienware and repeat a mistake that resulted in harassing high pressure sales tactics phone calls, he immediately got snotty and said, "WELL, YOUR THE ONE WHO HAD TO SPEAK TO SOMEONE RIGHT NOW" !

So, in a twist of fate, Misha ends up taking my order personally and proceeds to advise me on the best choices for what I'm hoping is a screaming state of the art notebook.

I have to fight with him the whole time to get the latest components that Alienware, Sager and ExtremeNotebooks all include in the same model Clevo notebook because AVA is so far behind the curve.

That was a 'joy' in itself and a source of constant aggravation and endless phone calls. I actually had to inform HIM of the latest wireless, graphics and WiFi cards on the market and listen to him tell me they aren't for this notebook or aren't yet on the open market when the other notebook manufacturers all had them. He would get smart or snotty with me and then eventually admitted that AVA purchases all their components on Ebay or similar places in bulk and can 'only get what they can get'... He finally agreed to check on the current availability of some of the components I wanted. Then 1 or 2 weeks later I would see them offered as choices on the AVA site. Funny...

So finally after all this nonsense the big day comes and I call to finalize my order. Misha advises me on no uncertain terms that the purchase of a faster 2.8mhz or so processor is a waste of money for too little of a speed increase and that the 2.4 'stepping' processor is the way to go, because they can just overclock it and it will be faster than the more expensive one. I ask if he's positive it can be done- he says sure, they do this all the time. I ask will it void the warranty- he says no, they have professionals who do this, there's nothing to worry about. So I think wow, what a great guy, this is gona be a scream'n notebook, and I saved a couple bucks.

When it came to the operating system I repeatedly told him I didn't want Vista, but he AND tech rep Chris assured me I had no choice, the notebook I picked wouldn't work with XP or anything else, even though many other OS's were offered as choices. So against my wishes Vista it was.

I also pick a 7in1 Iomega card reader because this 'state of the art' notebook only has a 4in1 reader.

I also am told by Misha this 'top of the line notebook' has an EXTERNAL volume control...

I also pick the super expensive dual SLI graphics cards...

I print out my order, put a personal hand written note with it detailing Misha's promises of overclocked processors and say if my notebook can't be overclocked for any reason to call me immediately, in plain English.

I also waited over 2 months to receive my purchase.

Every once in awhile I'd get nervous about Misha's shakey promises on my notebook choices and call to check up on things and he'd immediately poo-poo my concerns and assure me they were doing everything they could to expedite my order, and I'd say no, that's not why I'm calling. I don't care how long it takes, just as long as I get what I paid for and it's done right.

I mean we're talking over 4 thousand dollars for God's sake. He'd assure me everything was just peachy every time.

He also assured me, AT ZERO HOUR, that my system wouldn't be overclocked, he never said it could, I picked the processor I did based on cost, not overclocking, and overclocking usually costs a $100.00's extra anyway.

Ain't that something.

So, what'd I get for $4200.00 frigg'n dollars, my life savings.

A malfunctioning, buggy, slow piece of *#^&@% that didn't even have the latest drivers, sure as hell ain't overclocked, is as slow as a Pentium III, glitches and stalls on 7 year old video games, crashes in the first 24 hours, doesn't have an external volume button, has pop-up boxes that refuse to go away, won't let me install or run anything because I'm not 'Administrator' and has the WORST OPERATING SYSTEM ON THE FACE OF THE EARTH, Vista.

And get this, the Iomega 7in1 card reader, isn't even compatible !

Which it says on the Iomega website. NO ONE EVEN BOTHERED TO CHECK !

It's useless !

Where in God's name did they get all these wonderfully happy customers !?!?

I'm ready to frigg'in snap.

Update: It's now going on month 3 and I've sent the 'paperwieght' back, ON MY DIME($53.00 more!) to get looked at because all the 5 HOUR DRIVER DOWNLOADS and reinstalling OS's ON MY TIME has failed to solve anything.

And get this- tech rep 'Chris' informed me that the reason the computer is so buggy and won't run anything is because it's so far advanced and I have to wait(how long?) for everybody else's technology to catch up, then it'll work fine!!!

Va
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Comments

  • Av
      15th of Jul, 2008
    -1 Votes

    AVADirect responds to SmityT’s allegations.

    SmithyT purchased a Clevo 901C notebook in Feb 2008. Due to later release of SLI graphics technology for this notebook we asked if the customer wanted to wait for several weeks which he agreed on and processed this order, finally shipping it out in early April.

    First we heard from this customer is in about a month regarding random crashes and slow Vista related performance so we issued an RMA# instructing to ship it back to us for service. Once in service the notebook was inspected, it turned out that one the hard drives went bad and because this customer expressed a great deal of disappointment with his purchase we gave him several free upgrades all by our own initiative:

    1. Two hard drive upgrades from 160Gb 7200RPM to 200Gb 7200RPM

    2. CPU upgrade from Q6600 to Q6700

    3. Free games

    4. Covered $53 in original shipping charges

    Of course all backed by our outstanding support with related and unrelated questions.

    We have done all this out of the desire to help and satisfy this customer expecting a great feedback after all of these upgrades only to find out that this customer keeps bashing us even more, leaving vulgar voicemails, sending email threats and ignoring our requests to call us to discuss this situation simply to find out why this customer is so mislead or perhaps confused.

    At this point we were forced to alert local authorities regarding email threats and 4am profane voicemails and we are still waiting for a “normal” callback to discuss this customer’s situation but instead we only see this “campaign” to make us look bad when in fact we are an excellent company with countless great reviews from both customers and industry.

    Dear Anthony, for 3rd time, if you read this, please call me ASAP!

    Regards,
    Misha Troshin
    Sales Manager, CEO
    888.363.1051 direct

  • Wt
      21st of Jul, 2008
    -1 Votes

    i got a gaming laptop from ava its great too a wile to get it . but ive had no problems with it runs every game had to find updates for some games i drive truck and ive got it on a stand its taken a beating its the best 2400 dollars i have ever spent and i would but another laptop from them .you only here one side here his side there are a lot of great reviews only very few bad ones

  • Wi
      19th of Oct, 2008
    +1 Votes

    Jack,

    I feel your pain. One of the biggest mistakes I ever made was buying a problematic computer from AVA, having to hassle with the additional problems created by the bad advice I received from their support department, and hassle with this guy Misha.

  • Wi
      19th of Oct, 2008
    +1 Votes

    Ask yourself this, no matter what else may be good about AVA, would you really want to buy a computer from a company that makes its customers so angry that, in this case, they have to call the cops on them? I think that this poor customer's sad, cautionary tale just about sums up what it is like to deal with this guy Misha Troshin and Ava Direct.

    Based upon my experience as an AVA customer, Mr. Troshin will be nice as apple pie to you when he is selling you a computer. However, once you are on the hook, and buy a computer, get ready for a lot of aggravation, arguing, and general unhappiness.

    I noticed in Misha's Troshin's reply to this upset customer he denied and counter alleged. This seems to be this guy's standard MO. I have never had any success getting a problem fix when I have tried to use AVA's customer service. It is a nightmare going round and round with these guys who never have a solution to fix the problem. As a matter of fact, they have usually made the problem worse. Seems that Mr. Troshin thinks he can get rid of the customer problems he creates for himself by getting customers angry at him so they don't ever want to talk to him or do business with him again. He says he wants to fix the problem but when you contact him he gives you grief, argues with you, and makes your life miserable.

    In my opinion, whatever may be good about this company is more than offset by the grief and aggravation you have to suffer through when dealing with them after you purchase a product from them.

  • Wd
      31st of Oct, 2008
    +1 Votes

    This series of complaints I have read about AVA have changed my mind about buying a high-end desktop. When you pay your hard-earned money and experience any level of hick-ups, defects, conflicts and/or software/hardware problems, there must be a zero tolerance for key company personnel arguing with their customers. Company executives that do not take responsiblity for any shortcomings on a specialty custom ordered product is inexcusable. Best way to show our disapproval is to take our business elsewhere, where there will be no arguments, but service, customer satisfaction and results!
    Thank you for your candid reviews of your problems to assist me from letting such problems potentially become mine. Thank you AVA, but no thank you on that bridge to nowhere!

  • Ju
      1st of Nov, 2008
    +1 Votes

    Using AVA Direct was most certainly, the worst mistake i have made when choosing an online retailer. In fact, i consider this experience to be a $210 lesson. For a college student, this is a significant amount of money.

    My Experience:

    I had purchased the msi gx720 (MS-1722) barebone laptop with the high resolution option. Assembly of the laptop took two weeks (which is standard for a custom laptop). Upon receiving the laptop, i added my hard drive and memory (**less expensive elsewhere**).

    I turned the system on and booted to my vista cd. As i was setting up the Operating system, I noticed that the vibrations from my fingertips, gently touching the keyboard to enter the system name, had caused the crystals in the display to displace (similar to pressing on an lcd screen). Needless to say, this was unacceptable for a brand new laptop. Either the screen was defective or of exceptionally poor quality. The following day, I contacted my AVA Direct sales representative Joe, and i explained my situation. I asked for his advice, and he instructed me to contact MSI for repair under warranty.

    I called MSI directly after speaking with the Rep., and they had told me to ship the laptop to them "as a barebone system", otherwise they are not responsible for damage(s) to the additional parts (processor, wireless, etc.).

    I was not about to pull apart this brand new laptop, and pay for shipping both ways to MSI (**It takes 7-10 business days for MSI to diagnose and repair the problem**).

    The following day i contacted the same sales representative, and i explained MSI's requirements for warranty repair. He could not offer any additional suggestions. Finally, i asked to him to give me an RMA number, to send the laptop back (Denoting a "RETURN" of the defective merchandise).

    Prior to sending the laptop back, I also checked the AVA Direct site for warranty information, and "Terms of Sale" link located on the same page. Apparently the AVA Direct website is not Mozilla compliant, because i could not access the link (I also took screen shots of faulty link, which i cannot access to this day, from several different locations.). I decided to just send the laptop back.

    The day following after the package was scheduled for delivery; i called Joe, to confirm that they had received the laptop, and he did. Additionally, I asked; when i could expect my card to be credited. The clerk was surprised by my inquiry, believing that i had sent the laptop back for repair (which was never offered to me). He then proceeded to explain, that there was a 15% restocking fee.

    I was certainly surprised to find out that the return of my defective laptop was subject to a 15% restocking fee. Most importantly, I was not informed of this restocking fee, nor did i have the ability to retrieve this information from the AVA Direct website (I later determined that link was only faulty using Mozilla). I explained this to Joe that the "Terms of Sale" portion of their website was down, and he told me that "he would note this in the return request".

    Upon receiving my credit, it was $210 short. (The so called “Restocking fee") deducted from the refunded amount. I called Joe and asked him why they deducted the fee. He told me that "he had his web team check to see if the site was down the day i went to check the terms of sale, and the site was operational". (**First off; in order to check that, there is a great deal of historical logs to review for that particular date. Second; he did not know the date that i attempted to access the site.**)

    After arguing my case, Joe told me that he would have to consult his manager Misha, to refund the remainder of my refund. (Apparently, Misha was not in the office for several days, so Joe was not able to submit my request. Finally, when he was able to get a hold of Misha, Misa had quickly dismissed my request).

    Naturally, i asked for Misha's contact information. I left him over 7 messages, with no return phone call (**’great customer service’**). It wasn't until i asked for Alex Sonis, the President of AVA Direct, was Misha made immediately available.

    Needless to say, my conversation with Misha was not pleasant. His reasoning for not returning my restocking fee was a "lack of communication on both sides", and company policy. (A policy that is ethically questionable for selling defective or low quality merchandise).

    I write this detailed synopsis of my experience with AVA Direct, as a warning to those considering a future purchase with this company.

  • Ne
      7th of Dec, 2009
    0 Votes

    Did any of your complaints get corrected? I was looking at ordering a laptop from AVA direct, so at this point i guess i won't

  • Sm
      5th of Feb, 2010
    +1 Votes

    Holy Cow !
    I can't believe anyone, let alone REAL people, got a word in edgewise against Misha Trosin and AVA Direct...
    I sued these Russian criminals in District Court, WON, and they not only refused to pay the money I was awarded, but still are manipulating the American legal system, hoping to deplete my money so I will just go away by dragging this out for umpteen years...
    These people are total slime.
    Misha Troshin spends the entire work day trolling the internet looking for negative and derogatory reviews to counteract and defuse...it is impossible to keep up with this scammer. He has a stable of fake persona's he posts positive reviews under.
    Now these clowns have started a new fraudulent business to steal and ripoff more Americans in the event they finally dump AVA Direct.
    BEWARE - MGEPConline.com - this is Misha's new scam.
    You are warned...

  • Av
      10th of Dec, 2010
    0 Votes

    OMG!!! I trusted PC World on their recommendation of AVADirect. I wished I had found this site first before buying computers, yes more than one, on one order. I am giving them one more chance to resolve an issue I presently have with them before I submit a review here, across our State University system, and the suppliers of the components that were damaged during shipment, and not replaced!. If you are reading this Misha, you better get on the ball as I will be looking to our legal dept. for assistance in the matter.

  • La
      11th of Apr, 2013
    +1 Votes

    I actually came here when I was doing a little bit of searching and found a thread, that was unfortunaly closed. I don't know the status of the original poster in that thread, but I figured I might as will bring it up:
    http://www.overclockers.com/forums/showthread.php?t=635567

    I wrote a long complaint elsewhere (which I'll link to below), but I'll quickly summarize. I bought a laptop from AVA Direct and it took a ridiculous amount of time (something like 3 months) to get it. Fine. I'd rather have a well built quality machine anywas. Immediately I have issues with the keyboard and the random crashing, but I suck it up because I'd rather have a machine that fails once in awhile then go a month or 4 without it. Eventually the monitor begins acting up and it becomes unusable so I have to send it in for an RMA. They refuse to replace the keyboard, which is water damaged. I believe that it probably was water damaged, but it was damaged before I get it. This repair takes another 3 months. So once I get the machine back, I decide to leave a nasty review on resellerratings.

    They see the review and flip a ###. After some negotiating, they decide to send me that keybaord I wanted in exchange to remove the review (which leads me to believe many of these reviews are "bought" in one way or another). At this point, I'm ecstatic, I think I got a great bargain. I was dead wrong. The laptop immediately has the same monitor issues it did before. I request another RMA, but they want proof that its acting up again. I send some photos. No response. I'm out $2200. Again, this is a very brief summary. Links below for more details. Bottom line: avopid this company at all costs. They have amazing reviews, but I seriously doubt many of them are legitimate.

    http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/id-1646899/review-ava-direct.html
    http://www.resellerratings.com/store/AVA_Direct/review/2369501#comment2369501

  • Di
      29th of Jan, 2016
    0 Votes

    I've only had my computer a few weeks. I have no complaints about things breaking yet. I do have complaints about the terrible customer service, the ridiculous amount of time it took to get my computer, and the crappy Linux install. I had them dual install Linux with Windows 10. Well, the Linux install does not include them actually seeing if the OS works or interacts with any of the hardware, only that the OS is stored on the drive. I took a ton of time going back through a fixing everything that they had screwed up. In the end it would have been better to just delete the Linux partitions and started over. Their response was SORRY.

  • Sc
      8th of Sep, 2016
    0 Votes

    I am surprised to see this company still in business. I bought an AVA Direct computer many years ago finding this company in the back of Computer Shopper magazine. At the time, you would look in all the computer magazines and spec out your new PC looking at all the ads from Dell, Compaq, and Gateway, etc.
    AVA was located in Streetsboro/Aurora Ohio area at the time so I liked the idea that I could pick up my PC without having it shipped. I figured Intel parts are all the same, what could go wrong; every computer maker was doing the same thing.
    So I go and pick up the PC. This warehouse was huge, so I was sort of impressed thinking that they were doing a lot of business.
    I walk into the store front and there were several people waiting for their computer parts. The receptionist or employee said I would like to help, but the owners don’t let me in the warehouse. You could see through the window into the warehouse, and all the shelves were mostly empty. .
    You could see a couple of guys that were walking around the warehouse casually looking for customer orders.
    While I was waiting, I was talking to another customer who said he used them on several occasions, and that they were a Russian outfit that seems to be no worse than any other computer company.
    At the time there were very little retail stores locally that sold computer parts or systems.
    My system was a a name brand generic one that they sold.
    To make a long story short-- The system lasted less than a year, the name brand hard drive failed. The system was slow and monitor crappy from the start.
    After the PC failed, I guess I learned a lesson on where not to get a PC. I wonder about that day at the warehouse.
    Were the parts on the shelf just empty boxes, or were the parts used or refurbished or something else?
    Were these guys just inexperienced and did not know how to run a business, but something was definitely amiss.

  • Ra
      13th of Sep, 2016
    0 Votes

    My experience with AVA direct started off great. Then it went all down hill. The sales staff was very helpful and got a uncommonly large payment processed, through all the troubles. I was happy and was told my system would ship out after a 2 week period. I also received an email (which I still have) letting me know my system would ship in that period. This is a line taken from that email "Your order has been approved by our Accounting Department. Please allow 10-14 business days for us to process and ship your order. If you have any questions regarding your order prior to shipment, please feel free to let us know at any time." So you can imagine my surprise when I called after 2 and a half weeks to find out my system wasn't even being built yet. So I was obviously upset because I had made plans for my new PC and sold my old one. Just to be stuck with nothing now. I was informed then that it would probably be 3 additional weeks! (due to "extensive testing of the system and quality checks." Okay so I finally choke that bullet down. (PC still didn't ship until after 6 weeks...) Then the PC arrives and I'm totally happy! Then the first remote for the LED light controls didn't worked. (Tried 3 new batteries so I knew it was the remote) So I'm stuck with a rainbow color PC, flashing like crazy. They send out a new remote and it works! BUT! The LED strip is two different colors when you pick any solid color and half turns off when you pick blue... (not to mention the remote only works from 8 inches away.) I also noticed at this point because I have the side case off and am trying to check all the connections that there is some black substance all over the glass tubes. (It did wipe right off) But still where was the testing and quality checks??? Obviously NOT done! I paid 6, 300 so I would getting taken care of, not to get my money taken and get thrown aside. Now that you are paid you don't give a damn that I've gone through hell and the problem still isn't fixed and support stopped responding to my emails and picture evidence. Yes I've been complaining this transaction should of been smooth for such a company. (So I thought.)

    This was a message/review so it might sound like I'm talking to the company.

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