Who is the WORST Audio Shop?

There seems to have been quite a bit written over the past several years regarding the myriad of reasons one can attribute to the demise of the brick and mortar audio shop. Rarely have I read however one of the most obvious reasons, which based on my experience, has got to be the simple fact that for the most part, they just didn't offer a high end listening experience. That, along with an elitist and careless attitude towards customer service, buried them as much as anything else. So here's my question. Who is the WORST audio shop/dealer you've ever encountered?
An audio shop in cherry creek, Denver. refused to play my music on the dynaudio confidence, forced me to sit in front of focal 726s, which would have been ok if they had been powered by decent 2-channel gear, but no. The room was full of home theater receivers, Yamaha and marantz. This is really decent gear, but not what I was looking for, home theater vs 2-channel are two different beasts. Didn't help that their switch boards were not working, plus the creek destiny CD player I was popping my discs into wouldn't spin up. The yamaha blu ray player took my CDs just fine, but I still got to hear the salesman tell the owner that the CDs I brought in weren't audiophile quality, hence the read errors on the creek. Also found out from the owner that the creek was accepted by my salesman on a trade-in, it wasn't a new unit. That was the last time I walked into a dealer's shop, it was two years ago. I've bought many pieces of gear used and over the Internet since then, and I'm very happy with my system.
Why not just celebrate the good shops?
without a doubt, Landis audio in Chester, N.J.
Worst for what? Attitude? If so, two New York City shops excel at that, Lyric and Singer. I encourage all to visit those shops and check them out. Oh, you must bring your bank statements showing at least $1.5 million as a balance, otherwise they will not be able to sell you anything. It does help if you are also an investment banker or hedge fund director.
Overture. Enough said.
Sunny's audio video in Covina, Ca.
disagree with landis audio as a bad dealer. visited him several times and he was very cooperative..
Repeat... AV SOUTH in Tampa Fl.
Echo Audio in Portland, OR, super shop and experience! Ask for Kurt.
You are so right. As a resident of NY, I have dealt with both shops, but I think that Singer has the edge in arrogance and unfriendly service to the average lover of stereo.
Why is that Taters ???????
Samhar, I called Sunny's last year because they are a Dynaudio dealer and I wanted to upgrade my speakers.I was told that I would have to make an appointment and I would need to bring a cash deposit of 250.00 to audition the speakers. If I bought the speakers they would wave the 250.00 fee. I have auditioned equipment at many stores and not once did anyone ask me for a deposit.
Buconero, with all my respect disagree with you!
Lyric is a great place Bob helped me to set up my rega P5, and advice me to get a less exp speaker with great performance.
He knew I was just an ICU RN so no fat checks....
Singer agree terrible spot.....
Best store David Lalin Audio doctor Jersey City.
Actually, I travel much for busniess. When I am in some town/city, it is very helpful to me, knowning which dealers/retailers to avoid. Keep this thread on WORST businesses going...
Thanks for the explanation !!!!!! I bought something from them once advertised and charged/paid as a 9 when delivered it was a 7 !!!!!!! As someone said it's easier to ask for forgiveness than to explain !!!!! So I might agree with you !!!!!!!
The Music store in Greenfield, Ma. A TV shop offering audio as an after thought. Never works.
Have to agree about the attitude @ Sunny's. Called them earlier this year to purchase (used) speakers. Unsolicited the Owner proceeded to tell me that the speaker Mfg. was a whore because he sold direct and he just "wanted to get rid" of them. Then, called the speaker Mfg. directly and bought the new model for less than Sunny's price. Maybe I should have said thank you:-)
Years ago, there was a shop on the Upper East Side in NYC that wanted a $50 deposit to audition equipment!
Polk432 While I've never purchased anything from avsouth in Tampa I am familiar with the store, curious to hear what your experience was. Thanks
Jayh31, check your inbox and I'll explain why. Phone calls to Linn Audio emails, and all. Thanx.
Sunnys what a big turkey,stay away big time.
It looks like sunnys is going to win for the worst store in America. No ones deserves it more than him.
with many of the "hi-end" oriented stores, visit them during the day, during the week, and frame your reason for being at the store, diplomatically. you will probably have no problems.

i have been to lyric, singer and innovative and haven't had any problems.
Audio Advice in Raleigh NC. A particular salesman comes to mind uh,Ponytail! Most who know will agree. Stay away.
Don't forget.. Johnny Boey used to kick ass when it comes down to the worst.
Marco1, Love the Sunny's story, sounds like we have a consensus for who may be the worst. Which brings me to Brf's question above, "Why not just celebrate the good shops"? That would be because business, organizations, politicians, individuals, etc. should be held accountable, which is exactly what a free press is designed to do. Thanks all, Jay
Is it OK to cite "In House Stereo Repair"? Just checking.
Mrtennis, when the Green Mountain Europa's first came out he was the Green Mountain distributor in my area. I went there with the money burning a hole in my pocket. He does have some nice equipment there but was rather rude and condescending . He asked what amp I had, I told him a Cayin. He said something to the effect that it can't be any good cause he never heard of it. Then he said most of his customers have second vacation homes in the Hampton's which would be bigger than my modest home. I don't know where the attitude was from, maybe I didn't look rich enough to afford a custom home theater,(which is his mainstay). So I thanked him for his time and left. I'll spend my little money elsewhere ,thank you.
Lyrics attitude and rather, policy, is to qualify a good buyer in a couple seconds. This mostly lead to a maybe not always pleasant encounter. I understand the need to stop wasting time, to a certain extend, but their sales policy puts off many potential customers, something Lyric can ill afford in the partial demise of B&M sales fronts. I was there with a friend who bought stuff there and was considering buying more so had a nice encounter but saw customers turned away with arrogance. Audio is or should be a passion so the big and less so affluent looking peruser should be given ample time to play with the toys. Remember the Porsche ad? The salesman took time for a kid, it paid off when the latter grew up. I hope Lyric may do well in investing more time with potential customers.
Mrtennis, quite frankly your suggestion is nonsense. I shouldn't have to visit only during specific hours, and be careful to articulate my reason for being there. It's a retail store. If I can't come and go any time during business hours, speak to a salesman and get good advice, or just look around and peruse without being hassled, then it's a crappy store. I'll shop elsewhere.
You can't let the riff raff in! What would the real customers think. :0

Luckily I have not had anyone turn me away yet. I would be very pissed if it happened though.
I could not disagree more with you about "In House Stereo Repair". I've been dealing with them for close to ten years and each and every time they have repaired my equipment promptly and at too fair a price.

Last time around, I foolishly blew out four (!) amplifiers due to a defective DAC. Wayne was kind enough to meet me on a weekend to take in the amps because I could not get there during his normal working hours. He repaired the amps in one week. And again I picked up the amps on his day off!

To me, that is above and beyond normal customer service.

Avsouth in Tampa
Experience there is entirely uncomfortable
To Theduke and CSontos

I've heard both good and bad things about "In House Stereo Repair" in recent years. It seems for every good job Wayne does there is a bad job. When I recommended them before because Wayne did good work for me with a Phase Linear 700B I had members here tell me about shipping issues and shoddy/improper repair.
Come on you slobs... this is after all HIGH-END Audio. Would it really be so inconvenient for you to make a quick pit stop at Brooks Brothers so as to be attired appropriately? :-)
Lyric audio--Joe, the salesman over there is the biggest cheat I have come across in all my dealings in High end audio in the past 6 years. Sold me a pair of speakers claiming they were "New in Sealed Box" (recently on audiogon). Turns out they were repackaged and most likely their demo pair. Refused to take my phone calls. Needless to say I have started a credit card dispute. These guys don't deserve to stay in business.
After being spoke down to the last time I was invited to an after hours affair at AVSOUTH in Tampa (funny only 4 people showed up) I let the salesman know that I could pay cash for anything they had in the place as long as I needed it. Funny, he works there and can't say the same thing. What a bunch of schmucks.
Extended Thanks! guys. It takes courage to call retailers/dealers out on their bullshit.
Still bragging about how much money you have? They were probably calling you a schmuck as you walked out the door.
Roxy, first of all dumbass, lots of people have more money than me, but at least I have enough to be in this hobby. When I last visited AV SOUTH (I was invited to a private sales venue after hours) I asked the price of a used Linn Classik for my den. After waiting an hour and a half the salesman told me I was going to tell him what I would give for the unit. Nothing but the unit was on the table. No box, manual, remote, wire adapters, IC, wires, FM ant, AM ant. or Powercord. Not exactly plug and play. I offered 600.00 for the unit and was very rudely refused. I knew then why only 4 people showed up for this event. Usually there were 25 people or more. I had purchased a Linn Kudos Tuner, Linn Numerik DAC that never worked with the Linn Mimik II that I also had purchased from them. I had to sell the DAC and let the buyer know that they should have a Karik for the unit to actually work. I also took them a Linn LP12 for a rebuild in the past and they botched it up, so I rebuilt it and another one and they both worked fine. They had a one day only sale (that lasted for a month) on a pair of Linn Ninka and Majik 140 speakers 1500.00 and 2000.00 they let me listen to both pairs. I asked them to give me a call the next day, and like 3 other times before that, they never bothered to call me. I found a pair of the Majik 140's new in Ga. for 1500.00 so I bought them. I guess AV SOUTH saved me 500.00 on that one. I emailed and called Linn directly and let them know directly how I felt about who they had representing them. The last show I attended had a very cool rep from Linn there demonstrating the DS unit. I also let Linn know that he was very nice to everyone that attended. I also praised other Linn dealers in my letter to Linn, since at one time I had an all Linn system. I called Accent HiFi in Ny. and ordered a Linn cart. from them. They sold me Ittock arm about a year before that, and were nice enough to include an armboard free (without any previous agreement) They received the email I sent to Linn, so I'm sure AV SOUTH received one too. What has your experience been with them? Anything or nothing? Happy lowballing to you Roxy, and don't spend all of your money in one place.
I was in lyric audio recently and found the main guy there friendly and seeminglybknowledgeable fwiw.

Not much useful likely to come from this particular thread which sets the stage for bad karma just by its title.
I don't have as much money as you, or most likely 95% of the members on this forum, but I am proud to say that I have not lowballed any of those members from whom I have purchased.
It does seem that you have done your due dilligence in giving credit where it is due.
I have never heard of, or been to AV South. They sound about as accomodating as many other high end stores, which is saying very little.
You probably have more than I do. My point is that no one regardless of what they have or don't have should be treated poorly weather they are a prospect, customer, or client especially when others are within listening distance. They have acted this way for years, and are not making what they once did partly due to their snobbishness. I'm not the only one that feels the way I do about them. Being rich to me is being able to see out of both eves, hear out of both ears, and having use of all limbs. Alot of people aren't so fortunate. Money is good for things like not having to work, helping others, and buying tube equipment. Just don't buy from AV SOUTH or any other places that think that they outclass you. Wouldn't it be funny to win the powerball lotto, buy the same equipment (in volume) the snobs use and sell it for pennies on the dollar. No warranty, but a guarantee for 2 years, a new unit off the shelf. Locate yourself right down the street from them and watch them sink. If you lose millions, who cares, you're still having fun, and didn't work for the money anyway. Happy listening.
I still say Sunny wins the title for worst store.
Why are people that 'Sell' high priced merchandise often appear snobbish, arrogant, elitists etc.... Shouldn't they welcome any potential customer? Is there a name for this condition?

This also seems to apply to some real estate agents, Butlers and French waiters. Or so I hear / read.

I thought of this while watching the first episode of Downton Abbey last night.
Audio doctor in Jersey City, most interesting dealer I ever visited in the three state area, thanks to Dave Lalin advice and guidance I walked miles on faster speed in this hobby, will be rare that you can find any dealer with as many brands, gear and show rooms than Audio Doctor.

I was lucky to live in Jersey City for a few!

Worst place I ever visited Sound by Singer!

Worst Internet dealer dealing with Sunny of course!!!!!!!
Rok2.. they act like we are supposed to be in awe of what they have and treat them like gods. I usually ask if they have anything better than what I'm looking for and they seem to get the message. I could just as soon buy a hot rod car, rare coin, high priced guitar or another item that suits my fancy, so I make it clear that electronics are not the only thing that interest me. I guess you have to act more snobbish than them, and let them know that you're not impressed in what they have, but may consider something if it interests you. Is your other car a Rolls Royce too? Happy listening.
Mountainsong, Thanks for the heads up on Dave at Audio Doctor. Gave him a call today as I'm in the market for a DAC, interesting guy indeed. I found him to be knowledgeable, helpful and certainly energetic. Looking forward to speaking with him again soon as I think I'll take him up on his recommendation. With regard to "Who is the WORST Audio Shop", looks like an identifiable pattern of negative experiences has surfaced naming three front runners to avoid, those being, Lyric, Sound by Singer and most definitely Sunny. Thanks, Jayh31

whenever you have a bad experience w/ any dealer/retailer, not only do you write about the experience on-line, you must contact the distributor/company, who produces the gear of your interest. Believe me when I say, those operations do not want negative publicity.