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  1. #1
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    Question Marketing Question: How Do You Buy?

    I'd like to know how you buy your speakers and electronic equipment. Do you:

    (a) Research online; buy in a store?
    (b) Research in a store; buy online?
    (c) Research by catalog; buy online?
    (d) Research online; buy over the phone?

    When you answer, I'd like info not only on YOU, but then maybe on what you see your friends doing, and then maybe some info on how you buy OTHER products (using the choices above) like books, CDs, furniture, etc.

    Also, I'd like to know if you don't do any shopping or buying or research online and are strictly a "bricks and mortar" kind of person.

    Thanks!

    Micah
    ultramicah@yahoo.com

    "There's nothing funny about a clown in the moonlight." - Lon Chaney

  2. #2

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    B

  3. #3

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    You should post this question in the car audio forums too. You'll probably get alot of answers there too since it can be hard to find good stuff in local stores.

  4. #4

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    Research online, LISTEN in stores or at friends, Buy Online

  5. #5

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    Research where ever I can get the good info and buy online for the price. Been leaning back to the stores latley though.
    Wish I was a polkologist then I could call my self Dr.warviper.

  6. #6
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    I just buy whatever Micah suggests. (Psss.... Matt, give him a raise... he needs to buy new socks).

  7. #7

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    I'm in the (a) bin most often. If I can't buy a product from a store(Outlaw and SVS) then I'll purchase online.

    HBomb
    ***WAREMTAE***

  8. #8

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    Research online and in the store. I always try and buy from a local dealer if the price is competitive. I have also sent many of friends to the local polk dealer. The more friends that I send, it seems the better deals I get :-)

  9. #9

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    Originally posted by PolkWannabie
    Research online, LISTEN in stores or at friends, Buy Online
    ditto
    Last edited by gregit; 02-26-2004 at 06:16 PM.

  10. #10

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    Usually a and b. I am willing to pay a bit more in the store if I can get good advice and service and support. I will go the b route as a last resort or if the price differential is too great to resist.

    Dave
    Time is the best teacher. Unfortunately it kills all its students.

  11. #11

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    Research online to get information about the products and consumer reviews.

    Research in-store to get a hands-on feel for the item.

    Where I buy depends on where I can get the best deal. If I expect I might have a problem with the item I buy at B&M so returns/exchanges are easier and faster. If I expect the item to be problem free I will buy at the cheapest place available, online or B&M.

    Usually, the more expensive the item is, the more likely I'm going to buy at B&M since it "feels" like there is less risk involved.

  12. #12

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    Originally posted by PolkWannabie
    Research online, LISTEN in stores or at friends, Buy Online
    ditto, also. :)
    Main System: Polk SDA SRS 1.2 Speakers, Sunfire Signature 600~two Amp, Carver C-16 Preamp, Carver TX-11b Tuner, Marantz 6350Q TT, Philips CDR-775 Recorder, Teac V-707RX Cassette Deck, Signal Cable Double Run Speaker Cable

    Upstairs Den: Marantz 2325 Receiver, Marantz 5220 Cassette Deck, Marantz HD-880 Speakers, Marantz 6370Q TT

    Exercise (Kabuki speaker) Room: Kenwood KR-9600 Receiver, Pioneer CS-99a Speakers, Sansui SP-X9000 Speakers (not pretty, but LOUD! :) )

  13. #13

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    Research, see retail price, what e-stores are selling them for, then go to ebay and get it for 25% of price :D
    www.Vr3Mods.com ///// www.Version3Audio.com

    "No, that's silly talk. Dude, you can't possibly be this audio dumb so quit the act." - Doro

  14. #14

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    Research on line, then smash and grab.

    Two Channel Setup:

    Speakers: Wharfedale Opus 2-3
    Integrated Amp: Jolida JD1502
    CD Player: Jolida JD200
    DAC for Computer Music: Peachtree Dac it x
    Turntable: Rega P5 - TT-PSU
    Cartridge: Clearaudio Aurum Beta Wood
    Phono Preamp: Musical Surroundings Phonomena II

    3.2 Home Theater Setup:

    Fronts: Polk LSiM 703s
    Center: Polk LSiM 703
    Subs: SVS PB 12 NSD X 2
    AVR: Yamaha Aventage RX-A2030
    Blu Ray: Sony BDP-S790

  15. #15

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    Sid,

    25% ? ... boy have I got a shopping list for you ...

  16. #16

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    Research online then buy online. I normally buy used if available from ebay, audiogon or on a forum. If I can't find it used I buy new from whoever has the lowest overall price. I refuse to spend more in the name of service or advice at a walk in store.
    madmax
    Vinyl, the final frontier...

    Avantgarde horns, 300b tubes, thats the kinda crap I want... :D

  17. #17

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    1) Research online
    2) Listen in store
    3) If store doesn't have the best prices (usually not)
    4) Buy online

    *Research usually starts online at audioreview.com , epinions.com, google

    **Once I've committed to a brand name, it's committed to me, I only shop within that brand unless I'm let down.

    -Johnny Werner
    Product Manager
    Ringgold Telephone Company

  18. #18

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    By buying online you are effectively killing the Hi-fi market. Good dealers rarely go gang busters on prices for a reason. They understand your needs and should in most cases offer the best customer satisfaction.

    Case in point, if I want to hear the stores best cd player, no matter how high the price ($5000.00 plus) I usually am allowed in order to compare to the cd I really have the money for (much lower)

    It is because of this service that I reward the dealer with the small extra cash grab and markups. He takes care of all my questions and listening needs to make sure I've bought the right product. I can usually bring in an amp, cd player and compare with others they have in their store. I understand the ultimate value in this and because of this I will buy from that dealer. I have purchased used before. But i'd never buy from an unauthorized dealer online. To me that's like saying...."thanks for allowing me to waste your time and resources on me. now I know what they sound like and im going elsewhere."

    I like all places that sell true hi-fi and if everybody started doing that, I could never listen to a Linn reference cd player, a SimAudio or Classe intergrated or a set of Totem Mani 2's. I'm comfortable in spending a little extra sometimes in order to give back to the people that made this who love affair possible.

  19. #19

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    I feel your pain, but this is nonsense ...

    Theater owners used the same logic years ago about cable and satellite ... but for some reason they're still there.

    As far as A/V equipment goes, buying from MOST online sources will not usually get you the manufacturers warrantee regardless of what the etailers say and as far as the used market goes Audiogon & eBay are where it's at. What used to be the local Want Ad Press for used stuff has gone from being phone book size every month to virtually nothing.

    There will always be the hard core audiophiles that have to have the latest greatest thing as soon as it hits the sheves and my experience is that most of these folks don't hold onto equipment very long. They audition it for awhile and move on to the next piece of gear.
    Last edited by PolkWannabie; 03-01-2004 at 03:55 PM.

  20. #20

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    Research online...buy in store if I can. Will buy online if only choice.
    ag: SVS, Odyssey Audio
    "she had the body of Venus, with arms."

  21. #21

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    Originally posted by LuSh
    It is because of this service that I reward the dealer with the small extra cash grab and markups.
    I used to be you but I'm sick of paying top dollar for nothing. After the swipe of a card you are a stranger again.

    Why pay 999.99 + tax which is $1050 for my latest purchase (a Pioneer Elite DV-47Ai) when I can click a few buttons and have it at my house in three days for around $650? What do I get for this extra $400 I just spent? I mean if people want to mark stuff up by 40% their customers are going to go elsewhere. Compounding this problem are people who are selling their own opinions which I may have surpassed years ago. I'm sick of hearing all the gossip. For about half price I'll try it myself and then sell it for about the same price that I paid.
    madmax
    Vinyl, the final frontier...

    Avantgarde horns, 300b tubes, thats the kinda crap I want... :D

  22. #22

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    For the simple fact max, that you can still walk into a dealer and understand why you orginally wanted an Elite. Not based on online reviews but because you can hear it, touch it, feel it, understand why you want it. Understand what might mate with it well. To me buying online is a great way to get a mid-fi system.

  23. #23

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    Mid-Fi ? Which some of the Pioneer Elite products would qualify for ?

    If you haven't looked at the variety of gear that's available just slightly used on Audiogon you really should.

    For example just picking out Krell ...

    Classifieds Category Asking
    Krell THEATER AMP STANDARD Amp-Multi $6,000.00
    Krell KAV-3250 3 Ch Amp Amp-Multi $3,900.00
    Krell Showcase 5 Channel Amp-Multi $3,000.00
    Krell KAV250a/3 3 ch x 250w 8ohms Amp-Multi $2,650.00
    Krell 650mc KCT, KPS28 CD complete system Amp-Solid $19,950.00
    Krell FPB450Mcx Monoblocks Amp-Solid $13,000.00
    Krell FPB-650M Mono Amps $25000 ABSOLUTE STEAL PRICE Amp-Solid $9,500.00
    KRELL FPB 450mcx Cast ll Technology Amp-Solid $9,200.00
    KRELL FPB 350Mc CAST AMPS Amp-Solid $8,500.00
    Krell FPB-700cx valid transferable warranty Amp-Solid $8,499.00
    KRELL KAS 2 ONE OF THE BEST Amp-Solid $6,500.00
    KRELL 400CX FPB Amp-Solid $6,000.00
    Krell THEATER AMP STANDARD store demo full warranty Amp-Solid $6,000.00
    Krell FPB300cx Amp-Solid $5,500.00
    Krell Full Power Balanced 300cx amp sale pending Amp-Solid $5,399.00
    KRELL 400CX FBP AMP Amp-Solid $5,350.00
    Krell FPB300cx Amp-Solid $5,300.00
    krell fpb 300cx Amp-Solid $5,000.00
    Krell FPB 300 Excellent Condition Amp-Solid $4,500.00
    wanted tas 200x5 krell Amp-Solid $4,500.00
    Krell KRS-100 Balanced Class A Monos Amp-Solid $4,000.00
    Krell MDA-300 pair Amp-Solid $4,000.00
    Krell Kav 3250 new krell's bridgeable powerhouse Amp-Solid $3,900.00
    Krell KMA-160 Mono Classic Collectable Mono Amps Amp-Solid $3,200.00
    Krell KAV-2250 (Complete system) Amp-Solid $3,200.00
    Krell KSA 300S Excellent Condition Amp-Solid $3,150.00
    KRELL FPB200 Amp-Solid $2,900.00
    Krell FPB 200 Amp-Solid $2,700.00
    Krell Ksa-200s Amp CLASS A, POWER-AMP one owner w/box&manual Amp-Solid $2,650.00
    Aloia 15.01 Most Beautiful Sound beat plinius, krell, conrad johnson Amp-Solid $2,550.00
    Krell KMA 160 Mono Class-A Amps (pair) Amp-Solid $2,500.00
    krell fpb 200c amp Amp-Solid $2,500.00
    Krell KSA 250 Amp-Solid $2,350.00
    Krell KAV400-xi Amp-Solid $2,050.00
    KRELL KSA 200 CLASS A LIKE NEW Amp-Solid $2,050.00
    Krell KAV 500i Amp-Solid $1,950.00
    Krell KSA-100s Amp-Solid $1,800.00
    Krell KBX Stereo Crossover - Reduced Amp-Solid $1,700.00
    Krell KSA-150 Priced To Sell! Amp-Solid $1,580.00
    KRELL KSA-80 Refurbished Recently Amp-Solid $1,549.00
    Krell KRCR Integrated amplifier Amp-Solid $1,500.00
    Krell 250a Stereo Power Amp In Mint, original box & manual Amp-Solid $1,500.00
    KRELL KSA-50s BEST OF THE KSA SERIES! Amp-Solid $1,400.00
    Krell KSA-50S Stereo Power Amplifier Amp-Solid $1,395.00
    Krell Kav 250a SOLD SOLD SOLD giant killer powerhouse Amp-Solid $1,350.00
    Krell KAV 300i Integrated Amp/Pre Amp-Solid $1,199.00
    Krell KST-100 class a/ab amplifier Amp-Solid $1,100.00
    Krell KAV-300i excellent condition photos Amp-Solid $1,100.00
    Krell KAV-150 2 Channel Amp Amp-Solid $800.00
    Krell KSA 300 S microprocessor board for 120 v Amp-Solid $500.00
    Krell KSA-50, 100 or KMA faceplate and handles Amp-Solid $50.00
    Krell Cast 5m pair interconnect Cable-Inter $280.00
    KRELL SBP-64-X DIGITAL DA CONVERTER CD-DAC $2,250.00
    KRELL STEALTH D/A Converter CD-DAC $750.00
    Krell sbp- 32x Class A DAC CD-DAC $500.00
    Krell KPS 25CS 230V CD-Player $16,000.00
    Krell KPS 25sc CD Playback System CD-Player $12,500.00
    KRELL KPS-20i HDCD-OPTION CD-Player $4,000.00
    Krell SACD STANDARD full warranty - big savings CD-Player $3,350.00
    Krell KAV-280cd (Complete system) CD-Player $2,500.00
    Krell KAV-280CD - silver finish - NEW CD-Player $2,199.00
    Krell KAV-280cd Demo with Warranty CD-Player $1,999.00
    KRELL KAV 280 CD COMPACT DISC PLAYER CD-Player $1,750.00
    Krell KAV-250cd/2 markII hdcd mint w/ low hours CD-Player $1,695.00
    Krell KPS 20I/L /20I STAR magnetic disc clamp CD-Player $80.00
    Krell MD10 see pictures sale pending CD-Trans $2,000.00
    KRELL MD-1 cd transport, precision rom drive, trades? CD-Trans $1,990.00
    Krell 25sc Preamp/CD Player Pre-Solid $13,000.00
    Krell HTS 7.1 store demo full warranty Pre-Solid $6,500.00
    KRELL KCT PREAMP Pre-Solid $4,500.00
    KRELL HTS2 PREAMP - silver finish - NEW Pre-Solid $3,199.00
    Krell Hts 2 Pre-amp/Processor sales pending Pre-Solid $2,600.00
    Krell KAV - 280P preamp brand new in sealed box Pre-Solid $2,550.00
    Krell KAV-280p (Complete system) Pre-Solid $2,400.00
    KRELL KRC PREAMPLIFIER Pre-Solid $2,200.00
    Krell Krc With Phono preamplifer remote control original box manual Pre-Solid $2,150.00
    Krell KPE Reference phono stage Pre-Solid $1,600.00
    KRELL KRC-3 2 CHANNEL PREAMP Pre-Solid $1,400.00
    krell KRC-3 Pre-Solid $1,400.00
    Krell KRC-3 Class A Pre SALE PENDING Pre-Solid $1,395.00
    Krell KRC-3 Pre-Solid $1,375.00
    KRELL KPA PHONO PRE Pre-Solid $1,300.00
    Krell KBL Class A rated (trades) Pre-Solid $1,000.00
    KRELL KBL FREE 3 DAY AIR! Pre-Solid $975.00
    Krell KAV 250p -mint Pre-Solid $825.00
    KRELL KSL WITH PHONO/SEE PICS Pre-Solid $800.00
    Krell B&W 800 Series bass alignment filter Pre-Solid $775.00
    Krell KAV-250P pre-amp Pre-Solid $750.00
    Krell KAV-300R receiver with built-in tuner Receiver $1,800.00
    SPEC SHEET APOGEE HAFLER KRELL PERREAUX Soft LP $13.00
    Krell LAT-2 Monitor Loudspeakers Spkr-Moni $7,000.00
    Krell MRS (220V) master reference subwoofer Subwoofer $18,500.00
    Krell HTS 7.1 Silver $4,995 - Sale Pending Surr Proc $4,995.00
    Krell HTS 7.1 (New) Surr Proc $4,795.00
    KRELL HTS 7.1 PROCESSOR MINT Surr Proc $4,599.00
    NEW KRELL HTS 2 Surr Proc $3,500.00
    Krell HTS 2 Brand New, Half Price! Surr Proc $3,250.00
    Krell Audio Video Standard ballanced 7.1 with ac3 & dts Surr Proc $3,000.00
    Krell HTS-2 Surround SOLD SOLD SOLD Surr Proc $2,950.00
    Krell Showcase Processor 7.1 (like new)silver (reduced) Surr Proc $2,800.00
    Krell Audio video standard sale pending Surr Proc $2,500.00
    Krell HTS Mint Condition Surr Proc $1,699.00
    Krell HTS Surr Proc $1,650.00
    KRELL HTS Surr Proc $1,450.00
    Krell DVD Standard store demo full warranty Video $5,950.00
    Krell Audio Video Standard Video $3,100.00

    Mid-Fi ?!

  24. #24

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    A) for the most part but,

    I work in the field so I get to know about new stuff before the general public does.I demo our gear,then go out to our local and not so local shops and just demo my face off.

    I have a hard time because I want my system to sound a certain way and I stop and nothing(except price tags) to get it.Putting together a system is no easy task.Alot of the times gear in the store doesn't sound like it does when you get it home.So I go on what I can get out of the in store demo and comapre that to everything else around.

    Once I find certain products like speakers I perfer,I try to find components that are going to mate correctly.Wire is always a big part of my findings.Amps that can first off drive the speakers correctly then sound the way I want.

    I have bought my last receiver and plan my next power in seperates.Hard to completely decide which is the way to go with so many to choose from.I have narrowed it down to a few but still........

    Buying offline isn't my style at all.I perfer to smell touch taste,see my gear before I buy it.Now if I find something used online that I already know about,I can trust the seller then yes I will purchase online.Other then that no.

    I also order certain things but I already have experience with those certain products so I feel safe.Time is the only thing I hate here.Waiting is a killer.

    Disco products that still hold value in my system I will buy due to the reduced price.Only if the product is right.

    Such a tuff road buying gear.It was all so simple years ago when you can just get juiced on features and name brands.I'm well past that and I'm very picky what I buy.I do alot more waiting now then in the past.I research everything.Demo everything,buy only the selected few............

    Dan
    Dan
    My personal quest is to save to world of bad audio, one thread at a time.

  25. #25

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    The price of a system doesn't make a system hi fi or mid fi. Regardless of reviews, forums and price, no system could be truley hi-fi unless you know what exactly you are getting and know what it will sound like with the remaining parts of your sum.

    Spend 10k on a system, it still might sound mid-fi even if the Krell name is stamped on the front of your amp. For all you know it could be a horrible mate with your cd player, interconects and speakers. Possibly you'd be better off with something less expensive but still mates better with your overall system dynamics. You'd never mention that though, you don't need to, your system has the name krell therefore it must sound good.

    Regardless, buying aftermarket is not always bad. If you can touch, and listen. Buying used isn't killing hi-fi. Buying aftermarket online retail and not having the ability to hear it certainly is. Dealers can't compete on price and they know this. Too much overhead but that is when they offer you service tied in with your hardware purchase. It's that service that should make you want to buy from an authorized dealer. Even if he's a moron your allowed to experiement. To play with high end peices and figure out whats best for you.

    You could throw at me all the names you'd want. Krell, ARC, dynaudio, Martin Logan, Linn...those are just names. You have to dig down a little deeper and figure out what works best for you as a whole.

  26. #26

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    I'm not arguing. Not at all. Like I said, I was you a few years ago. However, so I want a new CD transport/dac to go with my polk 1.2's, Manley monoblocks and Modulus 3A preamp. I can buy any number of combinations and sell for the same price if something doesn't gel. If I take some "professionals" opinion and buy from them I take it home and it doesn't blow up my skirt. What do I do? I can go back and maybe spend more cash to try something else. So what if that doesn't do it? OK so finally I go the route of selling it to buy something else. Now my $5K transport/dac goes on audiogon for $1700. Where am I except out $3300 which I cannot afford to replace? Screwed is where I am. Maybe three years down the line I can try again? Not a very pleasant experience.
    madmax
    Vinyl, the final frontier...

    Avantgarde horns, 300b tubes, thats the kinda crap I want... :D

  27. #27

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    MadMax,

    That's exactly the point ...

    In the new gear market MOST of the higher end manufacturers protect their brick & mortar dealers by only recognizing what they sell under their warantee program. This is usually sufficient to encourage a lot of people buying new gear to shop in places like this.

    In addition MOST used gear is no longer waranteed by the manufacturer once it changes hands. There are some notable exceptions to this but they are few and far between.

    The problem is that even for folks like me who live in the NY metro area where there are loads of autorized dealers for almost all commercially available products it would still take almost forever to audition all the products there are, even in some specific classification, let alone with other gear I already have and certainly not where it counts i.e. in MY 2 Channel listening area. One of the few ways I know to get around this is to try various pieces of equipment, preferably newly used if you will, where I can swap things in and out for at most the cost of shipping.

    If someone has a better solution to the problem than this, I'm all ears as even though I have a fair amount of discretionary spendable income, I'd rather not burn it all up trying to find a replacement component when I don't have to.

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