What dealer/distributor has influenced you most?

Brian @ Aaudio Imports has by far helped influence me the most on my audio journey.

From the Isoclean products to the Weizhi over to the Stage 3 power cables and now to the Thales IC. The S3 and Thales are by far the best AC/IC I have ever heard in my system. No cable has come close to them. The new AC passive units Brain sells are said to better the Weizhi so again this is where the next move will be.

We are all hoping Thales starts to market/make speaker cables.

Who has helped you the most and how??
John Ruttan @ Audio Connection in Verona,New Jersey always goes the extra mile.The store offers a huge variety of audio products @ all price points.I've upgraded products with him for over 20 years and have always felt I was given a fair deal.A brief example is when I was having difficulty setting up my Vandersteen 5's in my home not only did he come to my home to adjust them but called Richard Vandersteen to see if he could add any imput on enhancing the sound.Highly Recommended!!!!
Steve at Cayin USA
Oh my goodness! The gear Aaudio Imports carries is very, very expensive! Hi end dealer for sure.

No one dealer has been able to help as they all seem fixated on several, and relatively few, lines. This is perhaps the reality of the business.
The bad dealers influenced me the most. I had to learn what I was doing or find a different hobby.
Glory -

one learns the most from a 'bad' dealer, as in, what not to do.

On the other hand, I can attest to Aaudio Imports and their Stage III concepts power cords. Simply put, the best on the market at the present time. Outstanding customer service as well.
I had some bad experiences at several dealers in my younger years - 25 plus years ago. My former neighbor owned a stereo shop for 40 plus years. One day while chatting on his patio he explained his entire business model. His product offerings were influenced by what other dealers were selling, plus what profit margin he could leverage from a given product line, and finally the quality of dealer/customer support provided by said company. After all it is a business above all else. So, I realized the advice and products I was getting from any dealer is most likely not unbiased or in my best interest.
So, I stopped going to dealers and focused my questions, research, sales, and purchases to the internet. It forced me to do more research on my own and as a result have acquired more knowledge. Finally, I've become good friends with several audio nuts (through transactions) which is priceless
I never let a "dealer" influence my audio hobby. A dealer usually has an agenda to lead one to what is most profitable, regardless of sound quality. The best influences were other audiophools who have been around a while and offered up some very good advice.

That said:

Brian @ Aaudio Imports is one of the good guy dealers! He doesn't carry junk and his product line stays consistent. His entry level is high end if your wallet can handle it, his higher end products are performance related to the cost.

Tim Ryan at Simplifi Audio has a very good product line, that offers high end quality sound at midfi prices.

Tim Kroll of Shelby + Kroll makes a great product, and is like an encyclopedia of audio knowledge.
Mark at Audio Perfection was the best and probably still is.If you find yourself in Mpls.St. Paul check him out.
all@terrific audio

they showed me over the years that a good kind of deafness / ignorance is absolutely normal. No matter how awful something sounds, when the profit range is right, it is absolutely great.
Audio Elation in Montana.
Me thnx it's the bad dealers that stay in one's mind.

Good dealers are what one comes to expect and should you not feel you were dealt with on a professional level you look elsewhere.

I have a couple places I like and often go there first to compare prices. Prices are reasonable I go back to them. I've had some horrific experiences dealing online but that comes with the territory. One thing always stayed in my mind growing up, it's difficult to get customers and once you do, one should go out of the way to keep them. I run across that very seldom in this day and age. It seems the tide has turned and the customer appreciation has went down the tubes.
Bob Neil of Amherst Audio influenced me to get JMR speakers which has been one of my best purchases. I wish he would get back into hardware reviews and cover some affordable gear.

Tim Nguyen of Tone of Music talked me out of a new turntable and said I just needed to upgrade the phono stage. He was right!

None of them, all of them are crooks!

Haha, just kidding.

Yes, there's some bad apples out there, but there are some (not many though) cool distributors and dealers out there who pride themselves on customer service, and deliver it.

That's my take...
Brooks Berdan
Dynamic Sound Systems

Affordable Audio

Brooks Berdan
The Analog Shop.
In the end, it is all about the dealer/distributor creating 'value' for the customer. Only when that is done does the dealer have the right business model, that is sustainable. Value depends on the customer, some want service, some a low price, others a 'relationship'. Years ago, when I was in the financial services business, we found that customers wanted an account executive who 'cares' as the number one factor in their doing business with the firm. Making money was number two. Today, value still does not mean the lowest price.
John Rutan - Audio Connection - Verona,N.J.
I can say with out fear of disagreement: there is no dealer more fun and accommodating then John.
You've tried the rest,now try the best.............and bring a pizza.
John will love you and you'll love him!!
I agree with Mred! John Rutan has always gone way beyond the call of duty to help myself and every customer. He loves audio and music as much as the rest of us audio geeks. Audio Connection in Verona N.J. has no-nonsense brands and is a great place to go and actually learn about this hobby. With 3 systems, all put together with John's guidance, I couldn't be happier. I've met a lot of like minded people there who've become great friends, which include John and the rest of the gang at Audio Connection.Check out John @ Audio Connection in Verona N.J.
Sound World, Appleton, Wisconsin. While waiting for them to bring my repaired mid-fi amp out, I was casually looking over their best system. One of the salesmen came into the room and asked a couple questions, then I told him I was there just to pick up my amp. I think he figured out that I wasn't real keen to this hi-end stuff. He then asked me to have a seat where he pulled up a chair into the sweet spot. Once the music started, there was no looking back. I got the biggest rush that engulfed my whole being.
He knew I wasn't going to purchase anything but was kind enough to let me listen to an excellent system for a brief period of time. I believe the majority of salesman wouldn't have wasted their time with me. This small gesture changed my life and I'm very thankful for that. BIG influence!
Brooks died a couple of years back. I don't know who is running it now.
One thing for sure It's not David Weinhard Designs. (Formerly
Ambrosia audio and video)