Is Harvey Norman Misleading Customers About Monster Cable?

Monster Cable has a long history of making outrageous claims about superiority to justify its high price tag. But the latest effort appears to be even more outrageous than ever before, with a Harvey Norman store allegedly comparing a Monster cable to a composite cable, without informing the customer.

According to trog from AusGamers, the Harvey Norman store in Indooroopilly in Queensland featured a Monster Cable stand comparing Monster Cable to "The cable in the box". As Trog explains, the difference was staggering:

The first thing I saw was the two screens and the Monster cable sign, so I immediately was interested to see the "Monster difference".

The second thing I saw was that the difference between the two images was simply staggering. The one on the left -- with the Monster cable -- was crystal clear and looked fantastic. The one on the right was blurry and terrible. You can't tell the difference in the photo (from my mobile phone) but it was immediately obvious, even from a distance.

However, the bad one on the right was way, way, way too bad to be anything other than non-digital. Anyone that has ever compared a monitor plugged in via DVI to one plugged in via VGA would know exactly what I mean -- the difference is amazing -- and completely unsurprising.

I could not believe that they would do a display like this with such a cheap "trick", but looking behind the screens, sure enough I saw a composite cable plugged in.

While it's clear that the sign doesn't claim to compare Monster HDMI cables to HDMI cables from another brand, the vast majority of shoppers would assume the display was comparing apples with apples, not apples with oranges. Given that you would get a similar difference in picture quality comparing a $5 HDMI cable with a $200 Monster composite cable, trying to trick the consumer into believing it is the Monster cable that makes the difference is a dodgy practice.

Remember kids: Friends don't let friends waste buckets of money on Monster cables...

[QGL forums -- Thanks Tim!]

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    I just think Monster Cables should change their name to Bully Cables....

    This is clearly disceptive and misleading ... Somebody please report this to the ACCC .. They have been doing this sort of stuff for many many years and still getting away with it ... dear o dear mr Harvey .. add another million thanks to monster rip offf... ooo did they not just gett a 1.7million fine for misleading 3d adverts .. ooopss and another for misleading customers with their dodgy catalouges ... Keep banking the $ by misleading mr Harvey Norman LMAO

    No they're not misleading because they aren't lying. It's irrelevant that they're not comparing it to another HDMI cable because they never stated they were.

      Wrong Glen. Most "misleading" advertising in fact doesn't "lie". Without getting too much into it, "misleading" may be defined as "designed to deceive".

      Case in point - TPG's recent $2m fine. "It was held to be a failure to disclose because, whether it wasn't there or it was just in the fine print, the court found that this was not the appropriate way to be doing advertising and informing consumers," Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) chairman Rod Sims said.

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