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I don't even own a DAW, I'm just a troll.
synthpunk was extremely cool to me, and I'm actually startled he'd rip someone off. I liked that guy.


Senior Member
It's really rotten to run off with Chillbot's gear. I hope you didn't loan him one of your nice synths!

I just went through my PMs with Synthpunk (going back a few years) and it is interesting that he mentions gear he is getting himself. Maybe it's really was a long con. Crazy ...


Sock Muppet
Occam's Razor solves almost everything in life.

It wasn't a long con. I go back-and-forth between it was almost an unintentional opportunistic swindle, or something happened to James. But the suspicious-ness of these other accounts on other forums lends me to believe the former.

Here's the story, if you read back through this thread I was very slow in coming out with actual accusations. I had kind of just hoped that 'hinting' at it would bring him back or find some resolution. But now since I've basically accused him I might as well come out with it.

I was selling an Apollo for cheap. And I had listed it here or at least mentioned selling it here for $1,200. I could have gotten $1,500+ for it minimum on ebay, but I have always been one to believe in selling gear for a good price and would have been happy just with ease of unloading it here.

I have had many many private messages with synthpunk over the years, we talked about a lot of stuff.

He offered to donate software to my local high school recording project.

He sent me his contact guy at Westlake Pro (a local music gear store) in order to get a hookup.

He sent me a ton of recommendations for gear... for an audio interface for the assistant studio... for monitors. We talked about euro racks extensively.

He asked me to purchase a spitfire labs instrument for him in exchange for paypal but eventually figured out how to get his CC to do international transactions so we never went through with it.

He bitched about the forum to me. A lot. Both old ownership (especially fundraisers) and new ownership (sorry, Mike). And a lot of members here. No names. OK maybe robgb.

He offered to buy my faderport from me, but I just sent it to him for free. He sent me the movie "Sound City" in return.

So after years of messaging, I get this message:

"Chill, I have a proposition for you, you have the right to say F off! lol :grin:

Would you take $200 (your payment of choice) a month on the Apollo ? I'm unable to buy it out right right now and if you get a offer at that price totally understand, but would like to add it to my Apollo quad if possible as I use the UAD plugins all the time and would like to start doing more mastering and this would help for that.

Again, more than welcome to tell me to F off, but seeing we kind of know each other you would know it would go to a good home, used for good music, and appreciated. I could also send you a very good Access Virus Ti rack either in trade or collateral until paid off. I could also throw in some mixing/mastering services.

Let me know what you think, feel free to think about it, no hurry. Best, James"

So instead of listing it on ebay, I said screw it. No problem. In fact, seeing as how he seemed to be hurting for money I said let's just make it $1,000 even, done.

I shipped the Apollo. A couple days later he sent me $230 (random?).

About two months after that I got an apology. "Please forgive me not being in touch this month it's been SXSW month and I'm just finishing up break down this week and will be back home next."

About a month after that I wrote him asking about payment and I got the response "Yes, we had a major loss in the family and been going nuts with family stuff. Hang in there please I promise.".

And that's the last I heard from synthpunk. So anyway... now you know what I know.

I've been fortunate enough that $770 is not the end of the world to me. If it was, I wouldn't have agreed to this. But now maybe you can see how it went down and understand a bit why. I give less shits about the actual money and more about being swindled by a friend.... so yes I am quite pissed.


Active Member
Mmmmm finished reading all pages, what a weird discussion to have out in the open. I even removed my previous message after realizing the guy's real name and location were dropped here.

Be careful for not sharing too much personal information because doxxing lawsuits are a real thing and instead of a late payment OP could receive something else in the mailbox.

There's a reason most forums have strict "name and shame" rules. Friendly advice: I think this should be dealt privately to avoid further damage to OP or forum owner(s). Why this discussion wasn't blocked or at least moved to the drama zone is beyond me.


Sock Muppet
Be careful for not sharing too much personal information because doxxing lawsuits are a real thing and instead of a late payment OP could receive something else in the mailbox.
Well he signed his name James on many posts and sometimes James Russo. Honestly not sure how that is any different than me using "chillbot". You can make up any name you wish on the internets. But if you'd like me to post his mailing address here as well I'd be thrilled to.
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