Your three favorite audio dealerships?

Can be brick & mortar or mail order. Those that provided consistently good service thta maje you want to do return bsuiness with. Let's keep it positive.

Mine are:
San Francisco Stereo - SF store
Future Sound - Burlingame, CA
Bradford Stereo - Eugene, OR
Todd the Vinyl Junkie
Music Direct
Acoustic Sound
The Cable Company
Quest for Sound Bristol PA for gear
Brent Jesse for tubes
Listed below in no particular order are favorites from a number of cities I have lived in during the years.

Accent Sound - Overland Park KS
Audio Port - Overland Park KS
Audio Arts - Youngstown OH

I could also list Bradfords in Eugene OR. I still keep in contact with them.
Holm Audio, Chicago area
Audio Dimensions, Detroit area
I second Quest For Sound in Bensalem,PA
Everything from great gear,tubes,cables,mods and repairs.
I also like the Stereo Trading Outlet in Jenkintown,PA.I uderstand that the late great Soundex in Willow Grove,PA is back in a smaller store,but I have not been in yet.
Stereo Design here in SanDiego. Huge store, great staff, 8 or 10 listening areas and a good selection of pre-loved gear.
What's not to like? Stocking Magnepan dealer, too!
Up in Carlsbad there's DSS. This is a smaller store but always have something interesting on demo. Mac, CA, Pass and more.
1.HIGHWATER SOUND 274 Water Street NYC Very Honest good advice!! Best GRAHAM TONEARM SET UP MAN!! 2.OVERTURE in Delaware Best MAGICO dealer!! 3.GALEN CAROL in TEXAS Honest good advice!!
Current Audio Stores - The Stereo Trading Outlet although I haven't bought anything there in several years. Used to be an absolute museum for used audio gear in the early 90's. Community Audio in Chestnut Hill is also a great store.

Former Audio Stores - Chestnut Hill Audio in Olde City, Danby Audio on 21st St in Philadelphia and Sassafras Audio in Bryn Mawr. I've heard many great things in those stores.

Hey Transnova - where is the new Soundex at?
There are so many bad ones and so few in general that its hard to pick 3, making it to stores in driving distance with disability also adds to the challenge. I have been to enough bad ones though to notice a really good one so the only offering I will give is to John and his gang at Audio Connection in Verona NJ.....these guys are great, no BS music lovers and pressure doesnt fit in there way of doing business. Its too bad more stores were not like this.
In the USA:

1. Ne Plus Ultra - Austin TX
2. Marvin's Electronics - Fort Worth TX
3. JS Audio - Bethesda MD

And for those in Europe:

1. Amplifi - Montpellier France
2. Portier Hifi - Geneva Switzerland
3. Point Final - Montpellier France
Just one for me-Audio Den in Lake Grove, Long Island, NY - Roy is awesome. Cares about my money more than I do.

Haven't had anyone come close.
Audio Alternative, Lilburn Ga. (outside Atlanta)
Another vote for (Todd the Vinyl Junkie)
Goodwins High End - Waltham MA

Spearit Sound - Boston MA

Audio Concepts - Attleboro MA

Not a fan of ID but I did buy direct from Channel Islands Audio. Their VDA 2 DAC is a great value. Most purchases are local although I bought my speakers from Upscale Audio in CA and they were great to deal with.
Primus Audio Pleasures-Kansas City, MO

Al Eckilson and his team are very knowledgeable and pleasant to work with.
Chicago Area:

1. Audio Consultants
2. Audio Consultants
3. Audio Consultants
Overture in Delaware. Terry Minaker is very helpful and easy to deal with.

Sound by Singer in New York - great selection, and I've always felt welcome there, and always had good experiences with Andy and the rest of the staff

Audible Elegance, cincinnati, Love to talk audio with one of the guys there

Honorable mention - progressive audio, columbus, oh, before they went full blown home theater - great product line up, welcome to listen to anything, great staff too.
Brooks Berdan, Ltd. - Monrovia, CA
Can't say enough about Brooks and Brian. Have changed my whole appreciation for music! Knowledge, experience and down to earth. What every shop should strive to be!

Upscale Audio - Upland, CA
Great service and product! Not bad espresso either! Kevin is a great guy!

Audio Unlimited - Denver, CO
John Barnes..... what a great host! Was on a trip to Denver and wanted to pick up some power cables. John took the time to sit and chat about all things audio. Great showroom and gear! Will make this a destination stop next time I'm in Denver!
John at Audio Connection
Music Direct
Acoustic Sounds
Audio Forrest - Birmingham Alabama.
I also enjoy Music Direct. Nice equipment, good prices, and fast service.
New York (in no particular order):

1. Sound By Singer. One of the most famous high-end dealerships due in part to its many ads in the magazines. I've heard many comments both good and bad. One thing I don't like about it is that even though they are located at street level with an inviting window display, the listening rooms seem to be off limits to the casual browser. You can't even peek through a window in a door. (There is a sign by the passageway to the listening rooms that says, in effect, none may pass without a salesman). Many years ago I auditioned some Vandersteen speakers there, and I thought the salesman polite but curt.

2. Innovative Audio/Video. A somewhat limited selection of brands, despite several nicely set-up rooms, but it is the place to go in NYC for Wilson speakers and Spectral electronics. I thought they were pretty tolerant to browsing, and even if the "big-rig" room with the Wilson Alexandria is locked, you can still see it because of the the glass doors. I bought my Linn Majik CD player here, and the salesman was quite nice, and we listened to the big Alexandria.

3. Park Avenue Audio. A few high-end offerings like KEF and Dali speakers, and Cary electronics, but still has the feel of a Harvey Electronics, you know, a place that is way above a Best Buy or Circuit City, yet is slightly more corporate in feel than other high-end stores. No complaints though, they seemed nice enough. One of the few (only?) places left in NYC that displays used gear for sale in the window. I purchased a demo Esoteric DV-50s that was in said window.

4. Rhapsody Music and Cinema. The owner was very welcoming when I dropped in a few years ago, but it is now an appointment-only store. The place to go for Goldmund, and they do have an assortment of exotic stuff that you won't find many places. You will deal with the owner instead of a salesman. He treated me well even though I wasn't a big-buck spender, and actually came to my apartment to check the set-up, even though I had only bought one component from him, and it wasn't speakers. (I did live close by.)

5. In Living Stereo. Now this store has the homey feel of a place owned by enthusiasts. Their friendly dogs were in the store the couple of times I was there, giving it that homey feel. Besides a few "usual suspects" of high end gear, they also carry some exotic tube gear and speakers. I have purchased some cables there.

6. Ears Nova. Never been there, they encourage appointments. The place to go for Harbeth, Marten, E.A.R, and a few other brands not carried elsewhere in NYC.

7. Harvey Electronics. Harvey is more of an everyman's high-end store, where the salesman wear ties. But I like it, and bought my Krell Resolution 3 speakers there. They have filed for bankruptcy a couple of times, and are down to two stores I think.

8. Lyric Hi-Fi. The granddaddy of NYC high-end stores, unbelievably I've never been there. The place to go for Magnepan, Audio Research, and they recently took on mbl. They seem to really be pushing Hansen speakers right now.

9. High Water Sound. Never been there, but judging from their website they specialize in exotic brands, horn speakers and tube amps.

10. Stereo Exchange. Many like myself remember this place fondly because back in the day they had a magnificent collection of used gear on display for sale. I still remember a pair of enormous, used Audio Research amps they had for sale. But they seem to have gotten out of the used gear business, other than the usual demos and trade-ins. Stereo Exchange, like Sound By Singer, seems to be hit-or-miss, that is, people either swear they had a great experience, or swear that they'll never step foot in the place again. I had a good experience with a friendly salesman "the audio elf." In fact, he even exhausted me with his willingness to audition and compare products. Stereo Exchange has a nice number of listening rooms.

So my favorite? I really don't have one. Unless the store is really snobby/bullying, I'll audition stuff and chose based on the brand I like rather than the store that is carrying it. I'll spread my $$$ around.

For anyone in the LA area, it has to be:

1. Optimal Enchantment with Randy Cooley (appointments preferred)

Audio Research, Vandersteen +...

2. Brooks Berdan with Brooks Berdan

Wilson +...


3. Upscale Audio with Kevin Deal (appointment only)

Prima Luna, Tubes +...
Zargon, have you ever been to Sound Asylum in Venice? I have not, but I really like the brands they carry.
TVAD, I have not had a chance to visit Sound Asylum. However, it occurs to me that there are a couple of others in that area.

Systems Design Group

A plethora of good equipment in well designed listening rooms +...

The Home Theater Doctor

Vandersteen +...
K J West One in London UK

Spearit Sound in Boston, MA

Audio Exotics in Hong Kong
In the San Diego area:

Stereo Unlimited. Very friendly and generous about loaning equipment. They have an emphasis on analog and tubes. This is where I've dropped the most green. They also have a room full of records.

The other two are guys that work out of their home: Sonic Culture, where I bought my Gyro turntable, and Audio Revelation.
From across the Big Pond:

Transparent Acoustic (Kronberg/Ts, Germany)
Hoergenuss (Frankfurt/M, Germany)
Raum Ton Kunst (Frankfurt/M, Germany)
Technology Factory (Antwerp, Belgium)
Daluso (Echt, Netherlands)

And although not a dealership since Dan only offers his proprietary products, I nevertheless feel compelled to mention in the US:

edenSound (Eden, VT)
Audio Connection in Verona NJ, Jeff Catalano at Highwater Sound in Manhattan, and Jon Schulman at Music Direct.--Mrmitch
Illinois: Holm Audio
I just found this thread, and as they say better late than never! This is an easy question for me to answer: Walter Davies, before he started the Last Company with his record preservation products, had a retail Hi-Fi shop in Livermore, CA, named Audio Arts. I happened to pay my first visit to his place on the day Bill Johnson was there, bringing a full system with him to start Walt off as an Audio Research dealer. Thorens 125 with a prototype ARC arm that never went into production, with a Decca Blue mounted on it. An SP-3 pre-amp, and D-51 and D-75 power amps bi-amping Magneplanar Tympani I-U's. Let me tell you, in 1972 that was something to hear! Walt is the nicest, most kind and gentle soul you could ever know.
Next up, a guy who has already been mentioned---Brooks Berdan. He started out as my S. California dealer, and became a friend. Quite a guy, who did not suffer fools gladly. Honest to a fault, he could come off as brusque, and often did! A really trained set of ears, he could suss out a product faster than anyone else I've known. He is greatly missed by all of us here, but his son has a new shop in Pasadena to carry on what his Pa taught him---Audio Elements.
Lastly, Randy at Optimal Enchantment in Santa Monica. A loooong-time ARC/Vandersteen/Audioquest dealer, and as sweet and honest as they come.
Yes, it would be interesting to re-visit this thread to discuss whom still operates a B&M Audio store.

My picks;
John Fort Audio -Dallas TX
Audio Advice- Raleigh NC
Soundscape- Baltimore MD
Soundscape - Baltimore , MD
Audio Connection - Verona , Nj
Deja Vu Audio - Mclean , VA
Spearit Sound in MA

Audio Video Therapy in NH

Goodwins MA
AV Therapy - Nashua NH

Music Direct - Chicago IL

Quest for Sound - Bensalem PA
Scott Warren with Advanced Home Theater / Best Electric.
Spearit Sound for sure!
Jafant, it would be interesting to know how many high-end shops have went out of business since this thread was started 7 years ago.
I concur Taters. It would be interesting to note the number of dealers/retailers that have gone away (not gone to net commerce) in the last 10 years...

Keep me posted & Happy Listening.
Analog Shop...... Audio Classics....Audio Connection.
Brooks Berdan was my favorite when Brooks was still alive. Unfortunately it's really went downhill since Brooks passed away.
Stevecham, How many is three?
Taters, have you visited Brian Berdan's shop in Pasadena, Audio Elements, yet? He was trained by Brooks (his Pa) his whole life, and took many of the BB Ltd. accounts (Wilson, VTL) with him to his new place.
I never understood why he started a new dealership. After all he was Brooks son. Now the original Brooks Berdan store has really went downhill. I would not be surprised if they are gone in a couple of years.
Spearit Sound in MA is very good and Jack Tozzi, in particular, is outstanding.
I can tell you why, Taters: Brooks left behind a widow, Sheila Berdan---Brian's mother, and she and Brian couldn't come to an economic arrangement for the shop that worked for both of them. Brian left to start Audio Element in Pasadena, taking with him some important lines (Wilson, VTL), as well as his expertise (years of training by Brooks) and reputation, not to mention some BBL clints. Sheila took over the old store, keeping on the old staff (some great guys), and bringing in some good new lines. They are both worthy of patronage.
I can tell you why, Taters: Brooks left behind a widow, Sheila Berdan---Brian's mother, and she and Brian couldn't come to an economic arrangement for the shop that worked for both of them. Brian left to start Audio Element in Pasadena, taking with him some important lines (Wilson, VTL), as well as his expertise (years of training by Brooks) and reputation, not to mention some BBL clients. Sheila took over the old store, keeping on the old staff (some great guys), and bringing in some good new lines. They are both worthy of patronage.
That is so sad and a warning tale for family businesses to have a success plan in place w, for example, key man insurance to make sure that there are enough funds to make a transition. And no I am not an insurance salesman.
Another positive vote for Jack Tozzi @ Spearit Sound. I have often wondered over the years if JT was still around? It is good to read that he is still around and well.

Keep me posted & Happy Listening!
Jafant - Jack is the best retail audio person I've ever dealt with. He's knowledgeable, fair and doesn't push product. Rather he provides consultation on products that fit your objectives and budget. He thinks holistically and helps you put a system together. He also understands that business success is based upon building long term relationships based upon great advice and service. He's in it for the long haul, not just the immediate sale.
Very nice! Mfoley3-

I would love to visit Jack and Spearit Sound someday. I have always wanted to read about their listening rooms and the acoustic environment during audition(s) for it's customers. No doubt, the shop carries excellent brands and offers excellent prices. Happy Listening!