High end vs internet

My local dealer tells me that the internet has killed
high end sales.I would like to hear everybodys opinion
about this(including dealers)!
Yeah. I can see that each individuals own experience with retailers is going to obviously help dicate where people ultimately put their money. If your local shop people "aren't any help", I can see the desire to buy that much easier on line!
You know in rethinking the original statement. I think things may very well be changing for hi-end manufacturers. MOre and more hi-end shops are definitely going to where the money is, and that's CUSTOM INSTALLATION! Where they used to make substantially more money selling "gear" and "pieces", they are now selling labor, service, and mid-fi gear, inwalls, and volume controls and home automation stuff! I can say I know of several respected hi-end salons in my area, that used to be the "go-to-places" for hi-end equip. Now those companies are concentrating on selling "installation jobs" and custom design work...with the equipment generally going to more mid-fi level gear(with exceptins of course). Where these stores used to deal in higher line more "tweeky" essoterica, they now down scaled the ambition level of their audio...while video keeps in proving however.
Still, yes, things are DEFINITELY CHANGING! I guess you either adapt and/or change with it, or you get left behind.
In the case of the hi-end, I think doing the "multi-channel" HT/music combi-gear thing, and redirrecting their focus has become a necessity if they want anything more than a basic living from what they produce it seems
Emh, I'm trying to concentrate on imagining a high school auditorium hosting a high end set-up playing Eminem, but each time I get it fixed in my mind for an instant, something makes me wince in pain and I lose the thought, whereupon I immediately feel much better... ;^)
Zaikesman- I understand. I couldn't come up with anything else high schoolers might be familiar with. Personally, I'd prefer The Clash, some good reggae, or Vivaldi. Still, I think the high end community is dropping the ball.......
Emh - It's a nice thought, but surely you realize that the sound would be half of the problem.
I think that while I agree with what Zaikesman has said in this thread(and where he has chimed in on this topic in other threads), the comment about Eminem tells the story of why high end audio stores are, always were, and until something changes, always will be a niche market.

I am presuming that Zaikesman's comments here were more fun than feeling, so I am using these statements as representing the typical bricks and mortar businessman we all know, not Zaikesman.

Why is it such a crime for a teenager to listen to whatever the hell he/she likes through a high end audio system?

This way more than pervasive attitude kills more high end audio business than probably anything else. The elitist belief that a person is actually "priveledged" to be able to audition audio componentry, and therefore must meet certain requirements of the dealer really is not lost upon most customers.

Music lovers are more abundant than we believe. Many of which have no problem paying a significant sum of money towards building a system where they can listen to their music, no matter what music it may be.

A few years back a friend of mine asked me to take him to a store where I purchased an amplifier. The salesperson's arrogant demeanor and conditions for listening ended up with the high end losing a lifelong customer. The most damning comment was that "You won't be able to play that Queensryche or whatever it is through this system. You may listen to this..."

The number of people who would react to this garbage with a "take your system and ..." is obviously pretty high. My friend now has spent a sizable amount of money on pro audio equipment and has never looked back. He is a pro audio fanatic in the same way we are high end audio lunatics. Again, high end audio has lost him FOREVER. His passion for music and gear is the same as ours. But, his money will be going in a different direction.

High end audio veers towards classical music and jazz, whereas pro audio tends toward rock and pop. I don't need to go into how classical/jazz have fared over the past generation. If the high end doesn't know which way the wind blows, it will parallel the music it strives to feature.

My point is that I think that in addition to lower prices, many have turned to internet sales as a way of not supporting local audio retailers who have offended them in some way. Personally, a local friend here on Audiogon has discussed at length with me a local store. The owner's arrogance and elitist nature is legendary across the country. He detests the man, while I allow that his selection is a redeeming point. My friend's point is that now in this day and age, people don't need to cowtow to this ogre, they can find anything he sells from someone better somewhere else. And, most probably at a lower price.

Seems like an obvious thing to me.

My overall point is that until these dealers, who for far too many years conducted themselves in a manner that would be suicide for most, look themselves in the mirror and make a change, the closing down of their businesses that has been called for for all too many years will continue. In my opinion, most of these salemen are too far gone to turn back now.

And so, the bleeding will go on...