Hi-end audio is a big zero

This is no knock on dealers, It's just how hi-end audio is.

I go listen to some speakers. He has them set up like crap - jammed between 3 other pair. Running on electronics I would never choose so I have to try and compensate for what I imagine they are contributing to the sound. Then after 30 minutes, I am expected to shell out the $4,500.00.

I narrowed it down to two transports from an online retailer. And who knows if those 2 are even a good choice?  Told point blank, I am not allowed to buy both and return the one I don''t want. Just pick one and buy it. Shell out $1,000-$3,500 based on what?

One e-tailer will allow purchase 3 speakers totally $12K and return the two I don't want. Sorry, i have a conscience and can't do it to him.

Read all you want. Talk all you want. Listen at dealers all you want. But unless you listen in your own room, it's all meaningless. I'm talking even just 5 to 30 minutes can be all it takes. But that is basically impossible.

Sure you can buy and sell on A-gon or Ebay if you find what you want have the time to go through the process.

If the prices weren't so high or I did not care about sound quality maybe it would not matter.


Not a total zero but not always what it appears for sure.  Has as much to do with glitz and bling as it does the sound quality.   It does not cost much to get top notch sound these days in most folks rooms at home.  These are luxury items that appeal to people for various reasons like any luxury item.   If you pay well above and beyond it had better at least sound good.  After that what sounds better or best becomes pretty much a totally subjective determination.  There may be something quantifiable to justify high cost in some cases but often not.   So high end is pretty much anything a vendor can get someone to pay for that most would not.  

I apologize for not being able to get past the title and first sentence of this post without being critical. The title is "High End Audio is a Big Zero" when what you meant is "High End Audio Dealers are a Big Zero". High end audio by itself is just fine and every once in a while (but not often), worth the high prices that are paid for it.

And the first sentence is: "This is no knock on dealers." and then you go on to spend the rest of the post knocking on dealers. The dealers may very well deserve to be knocked on but don't try to obfuscate what you're doing by starting with a counterclaim. Be bold and knock away.

  • "Still great" family owned group is Listen Up A/v of Colorado.
  • Listen Up has nice demo rooms and a better educated and experienced staff than big box stores
  • They pride themselves on customer satisfaction

Half the fun of this hobby is reading reviews... Seems odd that a dealer does not want to demo a product. Simply expects the customer to purchase the item. That being the case, what is the point of a dealer? Go direct like AVA, Schiit, Ps Audio, etc.