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Central Chicago, Near North Side, Gold Coast
Music Boxes


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Series of miscommunications...

I called to see about getting a relatively modern upright arcade cabinet repaired. I tried to express over the phone that it was a bit of a special case. The game had worked previously, but after an apartment move, and maybe too many steps up and down, it seemed we had damaged the monitor internally somehow. Myself and a friend, with previous experience doing arcade conversions, then tried to convert it into a MAME emulator cabinet running off of a PC. However, using the special PC to ARCADE monitor card we had used in previous cabinets, we were unable to get picture on the monitor.

So I called Anthony's Electronic Service in Chicago, which had good reviews online, and they referred me to Leonard at Sunset. He seemed very nice on the phone, but would not listen to the details of what I wrote above. He said he would send his guy and he would figure out the problem. I tried to explain several times that it was just the monitor that wasn't working, and that we tried multiple inputs, the arcade itself and a PC, with no luck.

So I agree to the service call price of $125 + parts... seemed fair. Leonard said they can usually fix it in one or two calls. The repair guy shows up, but seemed confused as to what to do or what he was supposed to fix. I had already taken off the joystick panel, the game motherboard, and all panels to get into the machine. The repair guy never had to take out a screw and never disconnected any wires. He looked around the back of the machine, and just kept saying over and over that he could reconnect the boards and joysticks. I said that would be fine, but that the real problem was the monitor. I told him I had a knowledgeable friend that disconnected everything and could reconnect it if needed... we just don't know anything about the internal workings of CRT monitors. That was what I hired them for. The repair guy said that sometimes they can work on monitors on service calls, but not NFL Blitz machines, which was my game and I had informed them that on the phone. There was nothing they could do without coming back another day with two guys to take it out and bring it to the shop. The repair guy put me on the phone with Leonard again, and Leonard said I still had to pay the service charge of $120.

$120 for a guy to come out, be told the same info that I explained on the phone, only to have him say there was nothing they could do that day. It ended with a loud argument on the phone, in front of the repair guy and one of my roommates, and I ended up tossing the guy $60 because I felt bad for him. Leonard sent him on a call for no purpose other than to charge me $120.

I made it very clear the problem on the phone and that it was an NFL Blitz machine. Once the repair guy arrived, I repeated the same explanation and after poking around with a flash light for 15 mins... again... never disconnecting or testing anything... said he could do nothing that day and that it would have to be brought into the shop for additional costs. What was the point of him even coming out?


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