Author Topic: Apple removes Mac Pro from sale in the EU after a amendment safety regIEC609501  (Read 9839 times)

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Offline gregariz

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As for the problem with europe. Everyone there want to do something and it's a bit of a twit race. They all take off in a different direction.

I agree with you. At some point you need to let natural selection take over. I have a fairly open old fan on my bench. It has metal blades and could probably take a limb off. My cat climbs all over it but has figured out that its life is best served on not poking its nose in there.

Designing products for Europe is just a total pain. Everytime your ready for a new product release, they've revised their standards and there is now a new test you need to comply with.

I don't really care its just it ends up being really expensive for any OEM to comply with all of them, many of them requiring certified testing of some kind or another. Test labs are just a total money sink. I've done a product for  a little startup and I purposely avoided any European distribution and probably saved them about 15k in test time. Thats peanuts for a big company but the company couldn't afford it unless it was a proven seller. So the US market was targeted and if it sells well, they may look at european certifications later. Its just an anti-competitive environment. I suspect it will affect hardware startup activity throughout europe if its not already doing it.

And there I was thinking the US is over-regulated.
 

Offline poorchava

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What a bunch of morons. Europe is a lost cause.
I couldn't agree more, especially that I live in EU and those stupid regulations make my life as a hobbyist much harder in many areas.

-Cars are becoming more and more complicated. Stupid Emissions regulations force manufacturers to pack more and more electronics into cars which results in extreme failure rates. Engine compartments are stuffed with gazilions of sensors, exhaust recirculation systems, fancy injectors etc. And all electronic circuits fail after some time. It's not uncommon for new cars to be towed to service station with as little as 20k km on the odometer because some dumb sensor failer and car refuses to start....

-economy is suffering greatly, because companies want to avoid enormous amounts of environmental regulations. If a company wants to run a business that can in theory emit any kind of substance to the environment (which would be almost every kind of business) they often have to setup special departaments who only deal with environmental stuff. Many companies are even selling their production sites and moving to far east - this is not the problem of labor costs, because it's rather cheap in eastern EU, but because of legal problems

-more from the hobby viewpoint - dumpster-diving is problematic, and not nearly as rewarding as it was 10yrs ago. This is because everything has to be recycled with a certificate etc.

-it's hard to get post production scrap from manufacturing companies, because they have to account for every kilogram of waste they produce

-any equipment is MUCH more expensive in EU than it is in US and I think that large portion of that price difference comes from the fact, that manufacturers have to do very costly validation tests for the equipment to be allowed for sale in EU.

-in eastern EU we don't earn that much (compared to western EU or US), yet all the taxes for fossil fuels are the same, which makes gasoline and diesel very expensive (for example i can buy roughly 3-4 liters of petrol for my hourly wage, a Norwegian is Swiss person can buy >10 liters). And that's only an example, that crap applies to almost every area.

-for example in Germany many cities are divided into emission-areas (from the lask of a better word). If your car doesn't pass some level of emissions criteria (indicated by colorful sticker on a license plate) you cannot drive into some portions of the city. And that applies to all cars, so if you happen to own a 1990 Mercedes W124, which is completly ok despite having 1M km on the odometer, you cannot access most areas of the cities.

-many substances are controlled, not because of them being drug precursors, but rather being unsafe for people/environment. Try to buy for example acethone, hydrochloric acid, nitric acid or any hydrogen peroxide stronger than pharmacy-grade 3%. Good luck with that. It's very hard unless you represent certified company which has a permit to deal with that kind of stuff. And in most cases such company won;t sell you half a liter of some chemical, because they have to account for every liter/kilogram purchased, used, recycled etc. Quite infuriating.

People often laugh at americans being stupid and needing warning labels on everything (that coffee is hot, don't point that gun in your face, don;t swallow metal parts end the like), but with that aproach you can buy almost anything, which may be unsafe. In case you do something to youself or others - you have been warned.

EU = fail.
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Offline amyk

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Also the tighter the regulation, the more incentive there is to circumvent them...  China is particularly good at this.
 

Online eliocor

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Once mastered the IEC/UL/... rules (I admit it takes time), when you will start a new project it will take less time in the development because you already know the traps/pitfalls you can encounter if you will not follow the requirements.
Your product will be better and the risk of not passing the independent tests (made by certified laboratories) will be very low (or even nihil).

It seems to me that those who are complaining are more hobbyist persons than professional developers and they do not understand the possible risks in selling riddled devices.

BTW, in my previous work I developed UPSs: their rules are stricter than default electronics!
 

Offline free_electron

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The reason i am complainig is the following :

1) the grille inside the machine for me is stupid as the rules clearly state that, of opened by a tech you don't need one, but of it's a user then you need one. So what ? User are stupid ? Come on. Maybe we should make a law that requires a computer licence, like a drivers licence.... That'll keep a lot of idiots off the net. The number of botnets and other infected machines would tumble drastically.

You will not hear me complain about the pull strength of the power cord. There's been a number of failures in the past years ( hp power bricks fro printers and laptops comes to mind ). Those cables get stepped on , tripped over and yanked out of the connectors. Demand they are kevlar reinforced for all i care.

2) the fact that it as european rule , but, there are already a bunch of exception. Herese a few countries that won't apply it and there's a few countries that will apply even tighter rules. There is discord in europe. Everyone does his own thing. This makes it hard for someone to develop a product as you need to be aware of all these exception. Suppose you are a small company , 50 people , and you are going to build a product  for the european market. Prepare to spend megabucks on a consultant that know all the crap , or spend the megabucks respinning the design after it fails cert, or spend megabucks buting all the standards and wasting weeks puzzling it all together and have to redo it every few months as there is always something new popping up....

Those are my two gripes.

O'm all for safety standard. But let's make ONE standard and universally apply it. Not this fragmented crap.
« Last Edit: February 06, 2013, 03:41:18 pm by free_electron »
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Offline poorchava

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User are stupid ?
You need to rethink that. Those are Apple users. But seriously: i think the movitation behind all those regulations comes down to 'i have right to be stupid'. But again, internal fan-cover can also be removed. If it's made not-removable, then it will be hard to clean it. This leads to situation when you have to replace functional fan (with all the additional assembly) because it's dirty. But wait... you cannot do that on your own because you are stupid and obviously not supposed to service the computer on your own... And stupid people will find a way to hurt themselves anyway.

I guess the best approach to deal with EU if you run a small business is to not give a shit about those regulations. As free_electron has pointed out laws are quite different across Europe despite EU's efforts to make them identical. This allows for some really creative ways to avoid regulations. And people are good at it. On top of that eastern EU, most of which has been a part (either officially or unofficially) of communist Soviet Union yet 24years ago,  has a really long tradition of not giving a shit about regulations/standards/authorities and/or inventing really ingenious ways of exploiting various conflicting rules.
« Last Edit: February 06, 2013, 03:57:56 pm by poorchava »
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Online eliocor

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Not so sure, but we had to follow the "standard" European rules (no exceptions, except for some RoHS niche products).
The rules for the USA/Canadian market were less stricter than the European ones, so it was not so difficult to follow them (except for some stupid details like wire colors!); but to my knowledge USA market is starting to adopt the same European rules (with some little differences in the naming/numbering scheme).
Never developed for the Eastern Europe: I have just taken a look to the Gost rules, but because of the need of a DIFFERENT certification for EVERY single eastern country we didn't confronted with those markets.
At least an European certification (supported by an independent certification authority) is valid in almost every part of Europe and (as previously written) with very little effort even in the USA and Canadian market.
If a device (UPSs in my case) is developed following the rules, the typical markets (EU, USA, Can) are open without too much fuss.

 

Offline gregariz

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I guess the best approach to deal with EU if you run a small business is to not give a shit about those regulations.


The other way to do it is to register yourself outside the EU and then intentionally not seek EU distribution partners and sell only via internet sales. My understanding is that by not promoting sales in Europe the individual customer then assumes responsibility for compliance if purchased from abroad. Most Chinese online-only sellers operate this way when selling into the EU. Cargo ships/planes of non-compliant Chinese goods are entering the EU and US everyday using this trick. We are competing against that.

Luckily in the US, regulations are incredibly difficult to get through Congress so things like ROHS and the no-lead requirements are not law. I actually don't think the US will ever formally go no-lead. The only reason we are doing it right now is to comply with EU regs. That same small product I mentioned above is actually being manufactured using a leaded process. It's completely legal to do so in the US. The biggest things to worry about for consumer products in the US are emissions (FCC), UL where you are using power (circumventable using a wall wart) and your business insurances/licenses. There are no CE, formal design file, ROHS. As I said.. where would you set up a business?. Its just a competitiveness question.
 

Offline poorchava

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I think that setting up a business abroad involves much more effort than doin so in you own country. Especially if you are trying to get out of the EU. Various regulations apply, you need to pay people who know local laws in the other country, or even hire some people to handle stuff for you (that is if you don't really want to relocate). If you are aiming for China or far east in general you will quite likely need a local resident to be your "legal person" who has all the local numbers and documents (like social security number, tax id number and the like).

Of course you could quite easily setup a business in some other EU country, which is relatively easy, but the goal here is to avoid EU.

As for EU regulations being valid in US/CA most of the time, this is not necessarily the truth. I work in automotive segment company focused on heavy vehicles, so we have to assume, that such vehicle will travel all across the globe. Believe me, that the sets of regulations necessary when particular product is targeted at US/EU/China/Africa markets are very different. Of course there is a certain common denominator in all those regulations, but every marked has it's own rules. On the other hand some customers say want to have vehicles that comply with multiple markets' rules (sometimes those regulations are in conflict with each other).
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Online eliocor

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[...]As for EU regulations being valid in US/CA most of the time, this is not necessarily the truth.[...]
I never wrote that the norms are the same: I wrote that if you follow the EU norms, in general it is very easy to have a product which is ALMOST ready for the USA/Canadian market.
In general there are some modification to do (cable colors/plugs/...) but they should be done nonetheless.
But the certification in general is very easy to be get (in general it require not more than 1 or 2 days of work in the independent certification laboratory).
 

Offline ciccio

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In general there are some modification to do (cable colors/plugs/...) but they should be done nonetheless.
But the certification in general is very easy to be get (in general it require not more than 1 or 2 days of work in the independent certification laboratory).
This is not my experience: getting an UL certification for an existing, CE certified product resulted in a lot of troubles and costs. My customer, after discovering that he had to spend more than 10.000 euros for a lot of new tests and to have the product manufactured with a totally different internal wiring, decided to avoid selling to the USA...
1 or 2 days seems really a short time: to me UL Italy quoted a really longer time, and the tests done for CE were of no use: they wanted everything redone, and by themselves, not by another certified lab.

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Offline cloudscapes

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A small DC fan? Seriously?

You can get yourself cut more severely opening up some of those plastic theft-proof consumer electronics packages. Maybe they should up the standards on those as well.  :palm:
 

Offline Marco

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-it's hard to get post production scrap from manufacturing companies, because they have to account for every kilogram of waste they produce
This is as much ISO's fault as the EU.
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-many substances are controlled, not because of them being drug precursors, but rather being unsafe for people/environment. Try to buy for example acethone, hydrochloric acid, nitric acid or any hydrogen peroxide stronger than pharmacy-grade 3%. Good luck with that. It's very hard unless you represent certified company which has a permit to deal with that kind of stuff. And in most cases such company won;t sell you half a liter of some chemical, because they have to account for every liter/kilogram purchased, used, recycled etc. Quite infuriating.
This misrepresents the reasons for most of those being restricted (also HCl is not restricted at an EU level AFAIK). Most of those were (relatively recently) restricted because they are precursors for explosives. As for how burdensome the licensing and administration are, that's entirely up to individual nations.

http://register.consilium.europa.eu/pdf/en/12/pe00/pe00048.en12.pdf
 

Online eliocor

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This is not my experience: getting an UL certification for an existing, CE certified product resulted in a lot of troubles and costs. My customer, after discovering that he had to spend more than 10.000 euros for a lot of new tests and to have the product manufactured with a totally different internal wiring, decided to avoid selling to the USA...
1 or 2 days seems really a short time: to me UL Italy quoted a really longer time, and the tests done for CE were of no use: they wanted everything redone, and by themselves, not by another certified lab.

Maybe I was misunderstood: I was explaining that if you develop your product following ALL of the IEC norms and with the USA market in mind, the transformation of this product for the USA/Canadian market does not require too much work except for some "small" things like color of the wiring, different plugs, ...

If your CE independent laboratory is also certified to make UL compliant tests, and they have already made the CE certification, the speedup in the tests (which must me made over again) is rather remarkable because they already know the procedures.
I remember the first time we made a CE certification for an UPS: the laboratory took a lot of time because it was the first UPS device they tested and the rules for such devices are stricter than standard electronic devices (for some tests they are nearer to medical devices!!!). So I spent several days with them discussing (and learning!) on how make the tests.
The next device under test took lesser time: for the following tests I even didn't bother to go their laboratories because the tests were only "routine".
I have to admit that we made some internal prequalification tests so we were almost certain that our devices were already compliant!!  ;)

Regarding the certification costs, you are right: unfortunately they are really expensive, but some of our customers REQUIRED some tests which was stricter than the norms!!!  :(
 


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