Where did you buy your first audio gear?

I bought my first audio gear in a Post Exchange PX store in Baumholder Germany. I was a young soldier about 20 yrs old and bought a SAE amp and Preamp, Bose 901 speakers, Sony CDP-101 CD player and a Thorens TD 320 turntable. Where did you buy your first audio gear? What did you get?


Images Sight and Sound Harbour Mall Fall River Mass.

Sansui RZ9500 (Stereo5 may know this place) 1990


Leiser Super Store Seekonk Mass Advent Maestro 3 way speakers. 1990

Tweeter Audio store I got one of the better Sony CD players at the time. Don’t remember the model #. 1990

Technics SL1200 MKII from a DJ friend in 1990

Still in use in system #2


Still own and use in Sansui and Advent’s in my garage as a third system.

Recapped and transistors replaced in Sansui.

Rebuilt XO with film and foil and new woofer foam surrounds and the Advent’s still sing!


I purchased a pair of Sennheiser headphones from Listenup (the original store in Denver) about 45 years ago. Soon after that, I got my first turntable from them.

Summer of 1973:  Tech Hi-Fi Cambridge, Massachusetts. Sansui 2000X + Phillips 212 TT + Studiocraft bookshelf speakers. Several months later, replaced the Studiocraft speakers with a pair of Ohm C. Still have the Sansui.  

First system in 1973 - I was 16 years old and drove from PA to East Orange NJ to some "wholesale" audio warehouse.  I found it through an ad in Stereo Review.  I had a pocket full of cash and this place was in a pretty bad section of town.  I parked on the street and ran to the front door (the door was "armored", and all the windows had bars).  Nothing was on display; you just told the guy behind the counter what you wanted, and he went into a back room and brought out the boxes. I bought a Sansui 881 receiver and a Technics turntable.        

For speakers, my brother and I went to the electronics store in our hometown.  It was set up like an auto parts store, with a couple of clerks standing behind a counter, and all the parts on shelves behind them.  One of the clerks helped us pick out woofers, tweeters, midrange drivers, and crossovers for a three-way speaker.  We then stopped at the lumber yard and picked up the wood to build the boxes, which we stuffed with extra insulation from the attic.  The speakers probably sucked, but boy were they loud!

My first attempt at HiFi was purchased from a pawn shop near the high School in Santa Monica, California and at a Pacific Stereo store closer to Los Angeles proper (I don’t remember exactly where). I got some nondescript box speakers with 10” woofers from the Pacific Stereo store that the salesman was really pushing, cost me about $200 I think. From the pawn shop I got a rather large stereo tube amp that had a problem on the left channel that no tube replacement could resolve. The component I most remember was a Fisher monaural tubed tuner that pulled in all the stations and had the sweetest sound. It had a champagne gold faceplate, and a preamp section in a separate chassis that was bolted to the tuner’s chassis. I traded it for a Sansui receiver and immediately regretted it. As nice as the Sansui looked, it didn’t sound as good as the Fisher. I made an emergency visit back home and when I returned, I discovered that my housemates had sold all my stuff (including a solid gold watch my grandmother had given me), no doubt for drugs, because, “We didn’t know if you were coming back.” The year was 1972. 

[I was surprised that responding to this question dredged up so many memories I had long repressed, some good, some bad, and not all shared. The past seems ever with us at times.]