Would you ever buy from a dealer/ manufacturer that was a jerk?

Discussion in 'Marketplace Discussions' started by WvL, Dec 18, 2021.

  1. Hendertuckie

    Hendertuckie Forum Resident

    I have not set foot in an Audio Store in maybe 20 years. Back in the mid 80's when my wife were getting started in the hobby we were treated like rudely and spoken to very condescendingly at Shelly's Audio in LA. Later, with a bit of education we paid them a visit. We played, I want i, but its ugly. We played the game for a 1/2 before he wised up. The Sound Factor in Encino was a wonder place and we did a lot of business together before we relocated to another state.
    33na3rd and Shawn like this.
  2. chili555

    chili555 Forum Resident

    If a dealer cannot treat me, the customer who, in part, pays his bills, then I will not buy.

    I once drove 3 1/2 hours to visit a dealer that I found polite and respectful. I happily made a $8500 purchase.
  3. WvL

    WvL Improve the lives of other people Thread Starter

    Birmingham al
    Yep...made a similar drive multiple times and will again (not necessarily the same place) for more purchases
    asj_999 likes this.
  4. Bill Hart

    Bill Hart Forum Resident

    There was a book store in midtown that was run by an insane woman. She would yell at unsuspecting customers-- people who reached for a book-- DON'T TOUCH THAT, she'd scream in the middle of lunchtime browsers; if someone was perusing a book (after being handed the copy by the proprietor), she'd say "This isn't a lending library- buy it or leave!"
    A colleague and I used to go into the store and watch all this, just for amusement. I hadn't thought of her in years.
    Decades later, I walk into a very nice book store in a posh suburb. The person behind the counter is in the process of confiscating a credit card from a teenager, who is told: "Tell your parents they have to come to get their card." (She apparently didn't like the idea that a youngster might have a pilfered card). Yes, it was the same woman.
    This amused me. Some things don't change. They just get older. :)
    12" 45rpm, Shoes1916, Dave and 6 others like this.
  5. Turnaround

    Turnaround Somehow heartbreak feels good in a place like this

    New York
    I find it very hard to believe that no one on this forum buys from a dealer or manufacturer that is a jerk.

    There are many companies that I think are jerks - I don't like how they (or their owners or management) operate, their values, or what they are doing for society-at-large.

    But if they don't charge tax or are 10% cheaper, well ... hey, it's all business and keep your enemies closer, right? Or if they make a really tasty chicken sandwich, well ...
    Shoes1916 and Glmoneydawg like this.
  6. Simoon

    Simoon Forum Resident

    Los Angeles
    I haven't ever had a rude experience in any high end shop in LA.

    Even when I was in my 20's going into Jonas Miller in Beverly Hills.

    I live pretty close to the new location for Shelley's, and despite minimal purchases there, have always been treated decently. Same goes for: Audio Element, Brooks Burdan, Common Wave Audio.

    My cousin used to sell high end audio in Phoenix in the early 2000's, mostly online and on phone, but sometimes in person.

    He would spend weeks, sometimes, with a potential customer on the phone, explaining in detail every aspect of a piece of gear. Only to have the person disappear, only to find out they bought it for some very slightly lower price somewhere else. Some of them would have the audacity to call my cousin back to ask questions about the product after they bought it somewhere else.
    Shoes1916 and AaronW like this.
  7. timind

    timind phorum rezident

    Pretty sure I would mosey on over and turn the stuff on myself.:angel:
  8. DrZhivago

    DrZhivago Hedonist

    Brisbane Australia
    I used to frequent many local audio stores back in their heyday( late 80's - late 90's). I can tell you one thing. I never ever bought anything from any store where I felt that I wasn't being treated properly. The worst period was when traditional audio stores started selling visual equipment. Sales people would get nervous spending more than 15 minutes with you over an $2k amp or speaker. When they had all these people walking through the door and buying $10k-$20 plasmas and surround sound systems with no questions asked.
    Shawn likes this.
  9. Classic Car Guy

    Classic Car Guy Forget Scientific & Enjoy the Music

    Northwest, USA
    I have a question very close to what you just mention. Being on SHF for a short period of time, I find people here in to be a normal to big spenders (for lack of better word) The reason why I'm saying this is, before I came here, I was in the Pro Audio / Keyboards and Guitar trend since the early 90's. That was a big money industry all the way up to 2006. All of a sudden like what you said "tire kickers" start coming in and killed the whole industry. You gotta trust me on this one because I wouldn't be here today if its the same thing.
    Every Hi Fidelity US dealer that I talked to atleast the negotiation is "not a one time deal". That's why I enjoy it so far. There will always be some bad apples maybe some fly by places but so far I haven't seen any yet.
    Oooops maybe one time... But this is a craigslist guy that I met and I notice in the first 2 minutes we talked, he already said he left his wallet at the house but he still have a few money stashed in his car, he has over 25 McIntosh amp and he wants to be my friend....
    I gave the guy a big smile, calmly turn around, went inside my car and took off. You can say I was the rude guy but I think I did the right thing by possibly saving my life from a benign weirdo...:biglaugh:
    So what I'm asking, are there really rude dealers? I wouldn't mind knowing...
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2021
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  10. brockgaw

    brockgaw Forum Resident

    I had a similar experience at the Toronto show eight years ago. Room sounded terrible and when asked my opinion I cribbed a line from a Stereo Review cartoon and said; " It sounds like I'm standing here listening to it." Crickets.
    timind likes this.
  11. Classic Car Guy

    Classic Car Guy Forget Scientific & Enjoy the Music

    Northwest, USA
    Why would he just act that way out of the blue?
  12. Classic Car Guy

    Classic Car Guy Forget Scientific & Enjoy the Music

    Northwest, USA
    Oh for real?
    I was thinking about going to New York and stop by at your place so we can hit up the big audio places....:-plnktn-:
  13. TheVinylAddict

    TheVinylAddict Forever moving forward

    Ever wonder how many dealers / manufacturers deal with customers who are jerks every day? :)

    We're all jerks to someone, somewhere at some time. I don't sweat it, sometimes someone is just having a bad day. I'm not buying a piece of equipment to make friends, I'd rather buy from a jerk who gives me a fair deal on a good piece, then someone really nice that feeds you BS.
    AaronW, mackat and Classic Car Guy like this.
  14. Classic Car Guy

    Classic Car Guy Forget Scientific & Enjoy the Music

    Northwest, USA

    Well I use to "hang around" at Roger Soundlabs in Torrance back in the 80's when I was a student. I tell them up-front that the only thing I have is my face and a busted wallet being as a working student. They probably made fun of me but still let me in and I hang there for years till I got my job and bought my very first mid-fi and high end deck. All I can say is, if those guys didn't give me that opportunity, I would be a headless chicken swapping gears left and right and probably saying "This is it" for the 7th time. For me, getting some insults here and there is a part of learning and took me to strive more further and narrowed my road.
    Shoes1916 and SandAndGlass like this.
  15. Benzion

    Benzion "Cogito, ergo sum" Forum Resident

    Brooklyn, NY
    Better go to Jersey dealers - they still can treat people with respect.
    Classic Car Guy likes this.
  16. I would have responded it needed more quads.
  17. For new equipment from an authorized dealer it’s not tough at all to find another authorized dealer who will match the price. Used equipment is a whole other matter but just imagine dealing with a jerk dealer on a piece of equipment that breaks a few weeks after a sale.
  18. Classic Car Guy

    Classic Car Guy Forget Scientific & Enjoy the Music

    Northwest, USA
    I haven't been to New Jersey yet. Interesting!
    I say lets go to Japan.. Seriously, and I told my wife as soon as the pandemic loosens up. I'm planning take the early flights and I can go to the heart of high fidelity. Man I'm gonna make it a mission not gonna walk out in there empty handed. Even for a OTL handmade Japanese amp. Or a sophisticated cassette deck. They have tons of those wonderful cartridges that will drop your jaw.
    Altleast if I get insulted inside the store, I wouldn't even understand it....:biglaugh:
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2021
  19. brubacca

    brubacca Forum Resident

    You have to be careful. I went to a 2 channel dealer early on in my journey. I didn't like what he said as he was very blunt and thought he was being rude. I was young and wanted what I wanted.

    Went back years later to hear a CD player I wanted to hear. When I was open to what he knew I realized his bluntness wasn't rudeness. Ended up buying a Naim Unitiqute from him just before he retired.

    Another story. Spoke on the phone with another dealer because he carried speakers I had. Asked about integrated amps for them. He went on this rant about people wasting his time and that if someone wasn't willing to buy $500 interconnects it wasn't worth having a system or some such nonsense. Avoided him like the plague.
    Shoes1916 likes this.
  20. Turnaround

    Turnaround Somehow heartbreak feels good in a place like this

    New York
    I'm not sure that's always the case, without someone being a jerk. Some manufacturers give retailers exclusive territories, and make all their retailers sell at certain prices. In shopping for a deal, I've wound up talking to dealers outside where I live, who are willing to call it an "open box" or "demo" (basically, labeling a new product as used) to skirt around the manufacturer's rules on selling to a customer in another retailer's territory, or bending the pricing rules. It makes me wonder if that dealer is a jerk, or if I'm the jerk. Everyone will be a jerk and step over other people to make a buck or save a buck.

    I remember going to an audio show once, where I was standing near a sales guy from a local retail store bump into a customer he knew. They exchanged some pleasantries, and the sales guy was very friendly. The customer was chatting with his friend, and mentioned something about his stereo. The sales guy hears it and says, "Oh, that was the thing you spent a lot of time demoing at my store. You wound up getting it?" The customer goes, "Yeah, I got it from so-and-so," then just turned back to his friend; ignored the sales guy like he didn't exist. I remember a pained look of disappointment on the sales guy's face, realizing he had spent a lot of time with a customer, who just went off to buy the thing from someone else.
    Shoes1916 likes this.
  21. If you’re going to a store in person, how would they know where you live before you strike a deal?
  22. Turnaround

    Turnaround Somehow heartbreak feels good in a place like this

    New York
    These were dealers I spoke to over phone or Internet, who were willing to ship the product to me cross country. Not an in-store visit to another dealer's store.

    I found them because some dealers list "open box" or "demo" gear on the Internet, or even "new" gear (but when you call them, they explain to you it's new, but doesn't have the warranty with some story about why they can't technically sell it as new, esp if you want a price break).
  23. Even on the phone I wouldn’t say where I lived till we had an agreed upon price. And at least for the online stores I’ve used I’ve never seen two tiers of pricing - one for local / one for non-locals. Obviously it’s happened to you though, I’m glad it hasn’t happened to me!
  24. Rupert

    Rupert Well-Known Member

    Honestly, in the decades of buying audio stuff I don’t remember ever thinking the salesman was being a jerk. Maybe I’m just looking through it. Don’t know.

    If the salesman was being a jerk then maybe one of two things might happen. I’d leave or I’d hang around and see if I can get what I had planned on. The salesman is only a conduit and goes away afterwards.
  25. Turnaround

    Turnaround Somehow heartbreak feels good in a place like this

    New York
    The experiences I'm talking about are the high-end manufacturers, who have like 10 or 20 dealers only around the country. They sometimes have arrangements and rules with their dealers, to protect the dealers but also give them special rights, I suppose to carefully avoid dealers competing with each other.

    For normal gear that you can find sold online, that's just normal price shopping. I'm just expressing that I sometimes feel it's shady or uncomfortable to get into bed with dealers I know are playing against each other through loopholes and grey market practices. Not the same, but it's like if you went to a flea market and found something cool, but had a feeling it was something stolen.
    Shawn likes this.

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