Places to Listen in Seattle

Headed to Seattle Dec. 27-31 to visit my wife's family. They live on the sound near the U district. I checked out a nice place somewhere around there last year ("Goodwin's" maybe?) and would like to know which shops are good for sitting down and getting a feel for what various gear sounds like.

I haven't gotten out to hear much in the way of components other than Pass Labs, Arcam, Naim, NAD, McCormack, and McIntosh, so places I can hear something(s) other than the above are preferable.

Thanks for the recommendations!

Two of the best little joints in town are right on University:

Experience Audio
The Audio Connection

You'll be right near Audio Row on Roosevelt too. There check out Hawthorne and Speakerlab which are bigger shops. I much prefer the two above, especially Audio Connection, for their more intimate, no-pressure atmosphere with owners who are on site and have a passion for what they sell. Given the propensity to the mainstream SS components though, you may need to go to the Row. Hawthorne is a Naim dealer. There's also a Magnolia HiFi (owned by BestBuy) up there if you want a HiFi megastore with hi-pressure sales people on commision. I tend to avoid them at all costs, but they may have some of the stuff you are looking for (albeit hooked up to massive switching terminals with miles of wires in huge rooms full of dozens of options...if you like that sort of thing).

Have fun in Seattle. I hope this damn rain lets up for you.

Yep, Experience Audio is worth checking out. Tim is a extremely helpful guy.

Hi Marco,

To add, while on Roosevelt Ave, stop by at the Definitive Audio. They have one good room in the back with Wilson Maxx2 that Mike Fremer wrote about but didn't like...:
Howard can find Mac amps at the Magnolia as well.

All of the main Seattle stores are covered in the posts above. If you have the time, and want to see a few different lines, you can also travel to Tacoma (about 30 miles south) and visit Advanced Audio Systems. The store is owned and operated by Curtis Havens, who has been in the high-end audio business for a long time. The store is just off I-5, south of the 56th Street exit. Here's the link to AAS's site:

I would also second the recommendation for Experience Audio. Tim carries an excellent line of products, and is highly knowledgeable (particularly about analog front ends and tube gear). He also has a very respectable selection of new LP's for sale.


Place(s) to listen -- An audio store(s) where you listen to an audio system.