Best and Worst customer service?

My vote goes for Sonic Frontiers, as Best! I was contacted within an hours, after e-mailing a question. Wery friendly and helpfull!(they can count me-in on the next purchase) Thw Worst? Linn audio! It's been over a month since i submited a Q! I am stll e-mailing the question...i am sort of amused by now!

Back in the Dennis Had days, the customer service at Cary Audio Design was fantastic!  There was gentleman named Kirk Owens working there who was absolutely great!  He would answer any and all questions I had whenever I needed to call CAD on the phone.  Once I even got the big man (Dennis) himself. Back in '20 I needed tech support, and getting a reply to an email was like pulling teeth, and forget about actually talking to a human on the phone (unlss you want to buy something).  When I finally did get an email reply, basically what they told me was what their hourly rates were and instructions on shipping the amp.  I actually found someone on another audio forum (AA) who helped me troubleshoot and repair which saved me literally hundreds of dollars (if not more).  The customer service I got from Cary Audio in '20 may not be the worst out there, but it certainly was no where good as what CAD used to provide back in the '90s and early 20000s. 

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Gmosley:  Just curious how you made out, e.g. whether ultimately they (VTL) agreed to service the unit or whether you had to have it done locally.  That’s still no excuse for the gyrations you had to go thru but a refusal to service the item is really, really bad in my opinion.  

Best I've experienced was by Vlad B of Audio Mirror.

Never had a bad experience, although once while inquiring about service I needed on one of my pieces I spoke with a  connection to well known and respected repair guy and was told my gear was not high-end enough to bother him with it. Not bad service, but instantly deflated my audio ego. Ouch!

Never never never ever!!!! Call VTL for a repair, you will be told to take your amp apart to show them that it was not modified. Then the woman told me she was going to China for a week and to send her an email to remind her of the conversation we had, then I was directed to the company web site. and was told to download the repair agreement. What a JOKE, THEY WILL NEVER GET A DIME FROM ME!!!!!!

That is amazing they would do that after a year.  I have purchased from them before , they were decent to deal with.   Your story says a lot about them.  

I just had an experience with Upscale Audio that I'd like to share.  

Suffice it to say that I purchased a fairly expensive component from Upscale about 15 months ago and recently realized that it was an earlier version of what was described in my correspondence with them.  The outside of the units are virtually identical other than a change in the input/output locations and after a complicated move from Florida to the NYC area I wasn't paying much attention at the time.  

I decided to list the item for sale a few weeks ago and based upon detailed pictures that I posted in my ad, an observant audiogoner told me it looked like the earlier version.  I sent off a note to Upscale and within hours, my salesperson responded that in fact it was the earlier version and he'd check with management as to how to handle.  

Within a few more hours I got a note back with a label to send my unit back in exchange for the new version, which I just received.  

Upscale has earned my loyalty.  Class outfit.  Mistakes happen. 

Reputation means everything to these guys.  


NAIM has been pretty terrible. Good luck trying to get a response after you email them with a technical question. Not what I expected after dropping $10K on new NAIM gear.

Sony has been even worse. Don’t get me started.

In the plus column, I’ve had very good service from The Music Room.




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The worst, Stereophile, Manley Labs and Solid-tech racks. I ordered and paid for their racks  3+ months ago and still not delivered them. The ETA was 2 weeks.

My best experiences are with Acoustic Audio in the EU, in the USA distributor is horrible, CH, TechDas, SAT and Kuzma.


I would ad a big positive shout out to JL Audio service.

The amplifier in one of my F113V2 subs died (out of warranty, purchased over six years ago) and my local dealer indicated that JL does all the service.  So I contacted them via their website and found that, for out-of-warranty service, they offer a fixed repair price that includes installing the updates they offer in current models.  Since the subs weigh so much they need to be shipped by truck, JL provided me excellent instructions on how to remove and later re-install the backplane amplifier, so the package could go via UPS.

I give JL an A+++++

I was too gracious re. My previous post about Cary. They stink.   About 5 years ago the microprocessor in my 306 CD player started to malfunction..  They refused to even look at it, stating they didn't have any parts on hand.  They were polite about it but totally useless.
Worst: Jungson. After weeks of back and forth two Jungson representatives came out to my home under the guise of promising to replace my defective amp under warranty. It was definitely under warranty. Instead of bringing my new amp as promised they listened and checked and confirmed mine was defective and then having learned as much from me as they could they promised a replacement and left. From that point on they stopped responding leaving my dealer to step up and make good. He told me Jungson never did make him good and he stopped carrying Jungson after that. 

Horrible, horrible company. No surprise. Look who they are, where they are based. Worst ever.

Now I wonder which company you highlighted your poor experience with... 

Just repost m8ty... 


Content may be removed for one or more of these reasons:

  • It looked like spam
  • It was abusive towards another member
  • It depicts explicit and/or violent content
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Except that it was NONE of those things. Just adding to the list of companies with awful customer service. Oops...hope THAT doesn't offend the mods too.
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Prior to buying my 1 owner Esoteric C 03 preamp a mint Ayre KX-1 e just appeared  on Audiomart, I wanted to verify if it was an Evolution from the factory. I called Ayre and to my surprise they were very courteous and Informative, I gave the serial # he took the time on hold to confirm it was a factory Evolution model. I had a question about the volume control repair and he was very honest and said we dont gouge are customers like other brands. I mentioned ARC he chuckled and said nothing!
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Shout out to Chris Johnson at Parts Connexion......  Chris always goes out of his way to help.
Best: Mark/Nick @ Rogue Audio,  Klaus @ Odyssey
Worst: Ty @ Tyler Acoustics (used to be good but something changed. Stated he will take my current linbrook sig for trade in, I was middle of a move so told him I'll let him know when I'm ready, then comes time to trade-in, says sorry I can't do it anymore as he wants to scale down. Way to stiff a customer that even bought his parents a set of his speakers b/c I liked them so much. 
Quicksilver has always been there for me...   super reliable, no problems .....just questions that Mike always answers promptly.     Their new headphone amp is quite good,  actually amazing for the money
Another vote for ModWright!
Great products and Dan is a great guy!

Pioneer - bad, bad, bad at providing technical support (There is NONE)
Best Service: Modwright and Linear Tube Audio. These folks always go above and beyond when a customer is in need.

Worst Service: KR Audio (Tubes) no response about warranty issue.
Not service per se, but the nicest person in audio I have spoken to is Israel Blume of Coincident. I’ve called him with questions more than once and he has taken the time to talk to me even while not owning any of his products.

Ralph Kirsten of Atma Sphere is also very friendly and down to earth. Very nice guy.

I won’t go into detail, but TMR audio will never see a dime of my money. I’d rather pay double for something anywhere else. As I could not block them, I asked Audiogon to block me from their sales in case I accidentally make a purchase from them.  


Conrad johnson

Middle of the Road (neither good nor bad):



None so far (hopefully I'll never get there!)
So far, McCormack and Audioquest and Energy have been great!
    I’m sad Klipsch destroyed Energy and all their amazing speakers. Yet they keep making jamo, and no energy products. They completely shut down Energy, probably because Energy was a superior product in every way.

onkyo, tascam. Any of the huge mass produced stuff have a joke warranty. They are throw away products.   Must have thrown away 4 receivers, numerous CD players, cassette decks by jvc, technics. Tuners when we moved houses.   So much stuff I threw out.  But the one item I still have is a Wollensack recordable 8track player. Meters still work, powers on, no issues after, I can’t even remember when my old neighbor gave it to me.  Unit must be 40 years old. I think??

  It’s more palpable to deal with dealers to get stuff done. Which I now prefer to order online from a reputable company, they usually go above to make your experience a good one. 
Simaudio the best.

Worst Aviation Laboratories in Houston (now out of business) purchased 2 overhaul kits for my DHC6 PT6 and they sent the wrong o-rings not once but four times. 
Best: and I mean in any business; was the late, great Thiel Audio, especially when Shari Graham was there.
Worst: Sirius XM radio who admitted fault in overcharging me through automatic payments, but refused to refund me.

Amazing that a 20 year old thread has resurfaced. Waiting to see but miniDSP may end up being worst customer service that I've dealt with so far.
The Worst-Nordost...had a 3m xlr ic Odin, bought at authorised dealer, wanted retermination (as stated on their site that is something they do) and after some e mail exchange (I still got those mails somewhere) they refused. 

Excellent service-Pathos....had an integrated amp. Pathos Inpol mk2, had a problem with power (switch) supply, send it to factory, got it back in better shape than it was before,cleaned, new tubes they even took care of some small cosmetic inperfections that were made during the use.

Aldo I had never had an Atmasphere product, I was considering once to buy sh preamps and mono blocks, wrote to R.Karlsen, got all the informations about those units that were on sale, he checked the data of my speakers as well, gave me some advice about it....
Needless to say, if the opportunity comes, will buy his products without a doubt...
A few years ago, I had a blown woofer on a NOLA speaker.  I called NOLA - Carl Marchisotto, the owner of the company, informed me that there were no replacement woofers available and then spent 20 minutes advising me of suitable woofers available from other companies which could be used as a replacement.  Truly impressive.  
I’ll add a vote for Innuous. I was having a problem with my Zenith 3 and emailed them.  Got a response within a couple of hours requesting more details. I was then emailed by a technical person in London who asked about accessing my desktop pc.  I gave him access and he spent 90 minutes fixing the problem .  He also  gave me some tips about improving the sound quality (which already is excellent) and answered several other questions. I highly recommend Innuous products  for servers/streaming/burning CDs for the sound quality, features and customer support.  
Also would be remiss if I didn't mention Grado....  excellent customer service recently....let's just say they went above and beyond.
Back in the 1980ies Snell sent me two new 10 inch woofers for my c2 mk 2 when only one was needing refoaming for 250! But my best story adcom I had their cd player it would skip and the big power amp which I inadvertently shorted out,  both units will out of warranty. They were located back then in New Brunswick NJ just 30 min from my house. I drove up and they fixed both at different times each time  for a dozen donuts. both the Adcom and Snells worked up to this day when I sadly sold them to afford newer and more contemporary offerings.  
Best customer service in my experience recently was Klipsch.  They could have just sent the diaphram and I would have been happy but they sent a new driver.   I know they are hard to reach sometimes  ut I contacted my dealer and I was up and running ASAP

Worst customer service?  Easy one to answer,  that would be VTL.  They would not honor their lifetime transferable warranty on an amp, rendering it a boat anchor.   Luke Manley is a P.O.S. and the most rude and arrogant person I have ever spoken to in my life.
Best when you get what you request. WORST when they tell you Sorry there's nothing I can do for you .Which is Bull.When ever I'm told no way ,I just ask to speak to someone else....