Advise on buying electronics out of-the country

It was brought to my attention by several online and in our audio group several people bought LPS ,such as Ted Pardo,,  fidelizer and others ,and this applies to electronics ,if there is no service centers I advise against it . My friend bought  a   Fidelizer LPS which has a Horrible 1 year warranty and his failed within 6 months ,you-have to ship it back to Europe for service, Very costly  ,  with Digital finally Denafrips finally has a service  center in the U.S and does Holo Springs which is good. many people don’t think about this , if it’s under $200 then that’s not a big risk . that’s one reason I always check where I can get it repaired in the U.S or Canada if not I don’t buy it ,just  something to think about.


I have bought amps from Austria, power supplies from Netherlands. components from GB, Bulgaria, and others.  I often buy from Parts connexion and hificollective.  Tubes from Ukrane and other ex soviet republics that I can't even spell.  Never a problem.  Oh yeah, one big purchase from Cyprus.


I do not (yet) buy LPS, nor the Swedish dirt boxes for grounds.

But I did buy a used preamp out of Switzerland without any problem.
(But it was through a dealer who had it on trade in,)

The same model was available from CZ, China and Italy… but they were scammers.
It took some work on google images to identify as problematic, as the scammers are getting pretty good at their craft.


A percentage of US gear is made in China, so I am not that there is a great deal of benefit in buying US/Canada/Mexico unless one knows where the is ACTUALLY made.

@audioman58 Your advice is very important to those who are contemplating purchasing gear that cannot be serviced in the US for those of us living here.

To the posters above, while the title of the OP appears to be addressing all non US and Canadian purchases, the post further elaborates it is not about all foreign made gear or the quality of foreign made goods.

It specifically addresses non-US made gear where there are not service centers in the US so hefty postage costs are incurred sending it overseas for repairs, and is sage advice.

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Just to be clear, the gear I mentioned above was bought from and shipped from the countries mentioned.

I have purchased a few items from Canada. No problem except that on one of them I got nailed for customs.   I tried to purchase some vintage Tannoy bookshelf speakers from Japan but the shipment requirements were too difficult to deal with. I never tried to buy anything from Europe but I would chance it if I really wanted the equipment and I couldn't get it here or in Canada.

I think it is a risk tolerance issue. Personally, if I could take a total loss on the item and not blink an eye… then if there is some compelling reason to do so, I will. I would never buy a mechanical device from over seas. Too unreliable and too much hassle if you had to send it back. 

If I am buying a piece of audiophile equipment, no way. There are principle attributes of audiophile equipment: incredible sound quality, build quality, reliability, and absolutely no hassles. 

I used to own a Sonic Frontiers CD player (Canada), and every two years the transport would go out… I would send it up and they would replace it. I did this for nearly ten years. Well, life is too short… 1) I will not buy a major component from outside the US and 2) no more Sonic Frontiers… even though the fixed it. 

An audiophile piece of gear should be forever (if you want it to be) and completely hassle free… in 15 years is that 20% you saved worth the fear and uncertainty?


Your call.

I’ve bought stuff from all around the world. 

Never had anything go missing, break down or have any kind of lack of customer support.


Most recent purchases were circuit boards for a Hiraga Super 30 amp from Jim’s Audio in Honk Kong (Amazing customer support). Chassis for it came from main land China (AliExpress). Some of the parts came from the US (Mouser), some from Canada (Parts Connexion) and some from Europe (Audiophonics).


Ive ordered LPS from Jays directly out of China. Also, amazing customer support. (Custom built unit not listed or stocked)


Previous Clearaudio TT was purchased out of Italy. 

I have my local suppliers and dealers (Solen, The Tube Store, Parts Connexion and a couple of walk in suppliers) and a couple of retail outlets, mainly Noteworthy Audio. But, they don’t always have what I want or need to finish a project, so I go elsewhere.


Not a single bad experience with anything ordered, shipped or delivered.


Lucky I guess.

I’ve bought from all over the world and never had a problem.  I bought a very expensive turntable last night (alcohol may have been a factor 😂)  Coming to the US from Austria.  Not a single concern based on past experiences.

Acquired a couple pieces from Shenzhen, China over last couple years.  Both units shipped and received within 10-14 days.  

Transactions were with a manufacturer not individual ....

Best of luck!

I too have bought from all over the world without a problem.  My last large purchases from overseas were DACs from what is now branded as Musetec, the latest being the Musetec 005.  Much has been written about this DAC here on this board.  It's been around for about 3 years and no one has ever suggested that it needed service.  Some years ago I wanted to upgrade my previous DAC from this company.  It was easy to lift out its main board and send it to China at modest cost.  The upgrade was done gratis.

The standard of construction of high grade Chinese components can be very high.  Many of them are modular so that if anything goes wrong a relatively small part can easily be lifted out and sent in for repair or replacement after a discussion as to where the problem most likely is.  Of course the owner has to be willing to open up the unit, and later put it back together again.  But compared to components from the US and Europe, the values can be so good that the risk and effort is very well worth it.  Also I, personally, have found very good support by email from this Chinese manufacturer (and a Korean one, SOtM, as well).

What a lot of people are missing is that if you get a faulty unit ,and breaks 

even if under warranty ,who would want to have to deal with possible Customs and duties, Getting lost or stolen ,as well as breakage ,and the cost of shipping and insurances is Very expensive and getting more expensive all the Time .

that is the point ,myself am not willing to go through all that added stress ,

ahd one more thing, FedEx DHL, and UPS even if properly packed if damaged are now denying claims at a alarming rate ,I think this speaks for itself !!

I believe I bought a $12,000 DAC from China for $3000. If the OP wants to pay the $12,000 it’s his privilege.

I have purchased from Europe, Japan, Hong Kong and China over the years and have never paid a duty for shipment to me in the US. Many years ago I had no difficulty at all exchanging a faulty cartridge from Japan for a perfect one. It cost far less than half of what the US importer was asking.  I have found all the overseas sellers that I have dealt with to have the highest ethical standards.

At the moment the "action" is in China. Thousands of audiophiles have imported DACs and other components from China with no problem at all. These include brands like Denafrips, Holo (even before any US service), Musetec, Gustard and a host of other products. These companies know how to pack their product for international shipment. It’s simply not an issue. Hard to believe all these problems with LPSs. There’s hardly a simpler component than these, and the better DACs have an LPS built in..

If the OP has all this fear and angst about ordering from overseas that’s fine. But it is not fine to spread so much misinformation.