Reliability and Service: Readers Rate the Manufacturers

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How We Conducted the Survey

Working with Lynd Bacon & Associates of Belmont, California, and Research Results of Fitchburg, Massachusetts, PC World surveyed more than 42,000 subscribers about their experiences with PCs, printers, cameras, gateways, and MP3 players. The online survey was open to our subscribers between April 1 and August 31, 2004. We limited reports to devices that were three years old or younger.

Lynd Bacon & Associates then used statistical analysis, including multivariate statistics and psychometrics, to determine which companies performed significantly better or worse than average over a number of measures.

In our charts, we arranged the companies with the most better-than-average scores at the top and those with the most worse-than-average scores at the bottom. When a vendor had both better-than-average and worse-than-average scores, we subtracted the worse-than-average scores from the better-than-average scores. When two or more companies received the same number of better-than-average or worse-than-average scores, we arranged the vendors alphabetically.

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