You will have a great time at Krystal Clear Audio (I thought their showrooms and system setups are one of the best in the country that I have visited about 3 years ago) Remember to bring your own music...
The biggest upgrade you oculd make right now is getting a real dedicated preamp with a Home Theater pass through... Denon Receivers are great receivers but the preamp section is seriously veiled (can't spell)
Audio Concepts. See:
There are a few.
John Fort Audio. He is probably the nicest and most knowledgeable guy in D/FW. He carries Vandersteen, Gallo and some horns.
High End Audio. Vu is a nice guy but, don't expect any kind of discount. B&W and Martin Logan.
Audio Concepts. They carry Proac, Wilson, Paradigm, Linn and Rega. Get ready for the stuck up/snooty audio dealer experience. Although there is one sales person there that is down to earth. Sorry I can't remember his name.
Crystal Clear. Don is ok but, just know that what he carries is the best and everything else doesn't compare.
find someone who carries montana audio speakers.
If you go to Audio Concepts, ask for Gary Sarles. I have dealt with him for years. He is about as down to earth as they come. And he is honest.
Thanks for the help. Looks like I have a playday planned.
Really do appreciate the suggestions.
PS: Posted similar question after my computer crashed and I thought I hadn't submitted. Hope the moderators catch it.
I've been an Audio Concepts customer for many years, and have never found anyone there to be "arrogant." They are particularly helpful and knowledgeable. They are not a discount chain, but their advice and service after the sale are worth a great deal. Audio Concept is without a double the premier audio dealer in Dallas; the shop that all the manufacturers want to carry their gear. Good luck elsewhere in my experience.
I drove 4 1/2 hours and willing paid list for all my Ayre gear just so I didn't have to patronize Audio Concepts in Dallas.
Eldarado's assessments are pretty spot-on for dealers.
Sounds like what you're looking for can be found in a pair of Green Mountain Audio Callisto speakers.
I suggest Proac and Magnepan auditions at audioconcepts. It would be a shame to miss those brands in your instance. Probably call ahead of time to let them know what you want to hear.
contact stan at www.theehighend.com to demo some usher speakers. he is the distributor.
Glad to see you are looking into the Dynaudio's. As a dealer myself here in Oklahoma, I think they should be only everyone's short list for audition. They aren't for everyone as nothing is, but they are a first rate company to deal with and their products are phenominal.
You mention the Dynaudio Contour SE, that speaker has long been retired. Just wanted you to be aware and you would be hard-pressed to find a dealer that still has a pair. The Contour S1.4 is the newest model. However, if you can get an audition of the Confidence C1 monitor your search would be over for good. :-) I have these in my own personal system and I can pick from just about anything out there on the market. I chose the C1's.
Regardless, and I don't want this to be a turn-off for you to Dynaudio. The Denon receiver and the Bryston 3B will be somewhat of a weakspot in your system. The Denon being the biggest followed by the Bryston. Certainly nothing wrong with Bryston, we are the Oklahoma dealers for them as well. The 3B model is a bit weak on power imho for the higherend Dynaudio models. The Bryston 4B does a much better job. Bryston makes a tremendous product, however, the 3B just lacks the balls compared to it's siblings. The 3B is still a very good sounding unit don't take me wrong. I just wanted you to be aware it might struggle a wee-bit with the Dyn's.
Let us know how your audition goes.
move the polks around before you ditch em...the monitor 5's are pretty darn good.
Go into Audio Concepts and just listen to the equipment. If the saleman is an *sshole, then buy elsewhere. My experience there has always been good. I never bought anything from them but CDs and records, but other friends have purchased there and have been very happy with their treatment and their purchases.
Of course, if you're insecure and easily intimidated by salemen, then you should probably buy online.
So many good and well meaning suggestions. Shame I don't have unlimited time and resources. I will get by Audio Concepts and ask for Gary. Time is a consideration so the others will depend on time and distance.
Jaybo, you are right about the Polk's. They are very good. Have enjoyed them for around 20 yrs. but would like to see the other side. The slippery slope seems to be in my future.
Ttowntony. No problem on the Bryston thing. I realize that what I have today may not be the best. It has served me well but all good things come to an end. Will just have to see how things work together and go from there. Figured speakers first then I could match other components to them. Thanks.
The Green Mountain look nice. Will have to do some research.
Thanks again to all.
Scoly1, if you are upgrading a two channel only system I would skip all of these dealers and talk to Galen Carol Audio in San Antonio. His lines are much more complete for audio only and feature the best brands that each of the Dallas dealers carry, all in one spot. You're much more likely to get careful, focused and expert service from him as well as a better understanding of what it takes to get great sound from a system. In my experience, this means a lot when you are prepared to spend more than a couple of hundred dollars.
I have dealt with Galen over the phone and he is top notch. The one problem with suggesting that Scoly1 go there when comes to Dallas is that it is four hour drive from Dallas to San Antonio.
Too far for top notch service?
Another suggestion of merit is Casey Mckee of Ne Plus Ultra in Austin, who has possibly the broadest range of the finest electronics and speakers on display that I have _ever_ seen outside of NYC (SBS) and Delaware (Overture), and I have seen the inside of most of the US best 2ch. retailers.
I know that is outside of Dallas, but he is well worth the trip. Dallas Audio Concepts is the best store I have been to in Dallas. I've not been in Vu's new store.
Sorry so long getting back on my trip.
We had a great time visiting a few of the recommended dealers. We were being chauffeured by friends that live in Dallas. They have no real appreciation for audio. To them fm radio is as good as it gets.
We managed to visit 5 of the recommended stores. All were courteous and helpful. Of note were Crystal Clear Audio and John Fort Audio. Don and John both went out of there way to make us comfortable and try to guide us in the right direction.
At Crystal Clear we had a discussion about my equiptment, plans for upgrades, and what I was looking for in speakers. The recommendation was Dynaudio audience 82. The audition room was a bit small for this speaker but sound was great. When we left I really felt I had found a speaker that would work for me. Don was very helpful and it showed why his store is rated so high.
Next up John Fort. After a brief discussion we decided to listen to the Gallo 3.1's and Vandersteens. Gallo's first and as soon as Patricia Barber's cd began I knew we were in store for something special. A few minutes into the first cut Dennis(one of the Dallas friends) leaned over and asked "does this sound as good as I think it does?". My reply, yes! Everything we were looking for. We listened to the Vandy's next but honestly know one was interested. We all wanted another round with the Gallo's but just couldn't justify taking up more of John's time.
To everyone who contributed to this thread a sincere Thank You. Your suggestions made our audition trip a huge success.
I really enjoy John Fort Audio. While their showrooms aren't as fancy as many others (unless they've changed since my last visit), it's the best place if you want to let the systems speak for themselves.
My first visit, I walked in with a stack of source material and was promptly and politely shown to one of their rooms. After being left alone to my own devices for over an hour (which I thouroughly appreciated), my Catholic guilt started to kick in (even though I did not want to leave) and went back to the main office to thank John and Duncan. Their response - "What?!?! You're done already?"
They don't hover. They don't mock your equipment or choices. They don't tell you what is the "best". They help make you feel confortable and put you in the mood to listen to music - then they let their goods speak for themselves. They know their stuff, but don't feel the need to prove anything (unlike other dealers I've experienced).
While I did not, nor have not, purchased anything from John Fort Audio, I put them very high on the list of dealers to check out in Dallas.