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Are there any decent retailers out there?

Discussion in 'Headphones, Earphones & Portable Music' started by dodgydaz, Aug 11, 2005.

  1. dodgydaz

    dodgydaz
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    I decided to purchase a pair of cordless headphones as I wanted to upgrade from my trusty but battered, Philips infra red set that I bought about 10 years ago. So the other week I trotted off to the retail park near my home to have a gander in Comet and Currys. My first thought upon entering was - What has happened to these shops?

    The displays at Comet and Currys were appalling. Shelves were incorrectly marked and the goods on display were either damaged or just in the wrong places. Staff in both stores were friendly enough and helpful but overall, I felt I had wasted my time.

    My last big purchase was a Pany PV500 Plasma which I bought from John Lewis after a price match, and I was quite impressed by their displays and staff knowledge. All the TV’s were clearly marked and although not being fed via a decent feed, the picture quality on even the cheapest plasma’s and lcd tv’s were OK.

    Walking around the TV’s at Currys, and I wondered why would anyone buy a Plasma or LCD from here? It was appalling. TV’s were either not switched on, or were so badly tuned in, they looked shocking.
    The prices were a joke as well. They were selling ex display or damaged/ returned models for only a couple of hundred less than full price!! Anyone thinking about spending 2 grand plus on a TV will hopefully have done their homework and know about running the plasmas in a bit to avoid screen burn etc. Probably something the sales staff at these stores do not consider when they have these sets on the same freeview channel, 12 hours a day, 7 days a week. So who in their right mind will try to save 200 poxy quid when buying a 2k TV.??

    I am not blaming the staff at all as I feel they do the best they can considering the wages they are paid. It’s the companies themselves that I feel should take note.

    As I said at the beginning, I wanted a pair of cordless headphones. In Currys they had a couple of crappy £30 Philips jobbies and a set of £40 JVC’s – All of which were in damaged or opened boxes.
    Comet had one pair of twenty pound!!! Cordless headphones by some obscure make, and that was it.

    Where else can I go??
    I have seen the Sennheiser RS130’s and 140’s on various websites so would like to have a look at these before shelling out £75-£130, but I cannot find anywhere that sells them.
    It is getting very frustrating. I have bought gear off the net before so am not worried at all, but with these phones, I would just like to have a feel first before parting with the cash.

    Can anyone at all tell me where I can go to demo these or other headphones?

    I am never, ever setting foot inside Comet or Currys again as I feel the fat cat bosses of these companies are laughing at every single person who buys something from these terrible places.

    Rant over.
     
  2. extremelydodgy

    extremelydodgy
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    What has happened? What do you mean? Even 10 years ago I had the same experiences in Dixons. Ex-demo being passed on for new, etc. I buy small things like minidisc discs and batteries from Dixons, but as you have elected to do these days, I always go to reputable stores who can in many cases get to Dixon's prices for the bigger ticket items.


    Also I didn't realise PC World was part of the DSG group. I'll never make that mistake again after I was sold processor boxes and opened motherboards as new. Not processors, processor boxes. i.e. processor boxes with no processor inside them. I object to paying £150 for a heatsink/fan, no matter how fancy it is.


    I've found that many of the shops on Tottenham Court Road are, despite their outward relative dodginess perhaps, much better than DSG. I like ASK as they're reasonable in price and I get to speak to people who are pretty helpful. And as you've found, in terms of major stores John Lewis are one of the best I think.
     
  3. gringottsdirect

    gringottsdirect
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    Why don't you just order them online - and return them using Distance Selling Regulations for a refund if they are not to your liking.
    No point stocking them - too many people roadtest them then go away and order off internet. :cool:
     
  4. dodgydaz

    dodgydaz
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    Found a local retailer in Notts who had a set of RS130's for £100. Looked OK but felt a bit plasticcy - especially for the money. I have seen them on the net for around £70, but am still a bit put off by how they felt. Will they last, especially when my little un gets his hands on them.

    Are there any wireless headphones that feel a bit more substantial. I know you should not go for looks if they sound amazing etc but I want to know that I have bought a decent set that will last a few years
     
  5. dodgydaz

    dodgydaz
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    After scourering the net I discovered audiocubes website. What an eye opener. They are selling headphones that would blow the sennheisers out of the water and for only 30-40 quid more. But its an American site and none of the models are being sold in the UK. Why do other countries have more choice than we do? The cans I have seen are the Pioneer SE DIR800C's. They are amazing to look at and the cheapest I have seen them for is $263. Pixmainia are actually selling these ones for the same price in pound sterling!!!

    Its the same for mobiles. Japan and America sell cool mobile phones with 5 mega pixel cameras, yet we only have models with a maximum of 1.3 or 2 meg. I know they always have the good stuff first but in a lot of cases they have models of headphones and mobiles which will never be sold in this country! Why is that?
    Can anyone advise if they have ever bought anything from an American site as I am seriously tempted to get these Pioneers from a website in the states.

    Edit:
    Would you adam and eve it. Just seen the SE DIR800 thread that was started last year. Very informative.
     
  6. NicolasB

    NicolasB
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    You need to be careful with american sites. Remember to factor in:

    1) You have to pay greatly increased shipping charges.

    2) You have to pay the credit card company's commission for changing £ to $ - typically 2.5% or 3%.

    3) The price on the U.S. website is quoted without tax. You will have to pay V.A.T. on that.

    4) And you will have to pay import duty on that.

    5) And you will have to pay a commission to the courier (or the post office) for the privilege of having them pay the customs charges and then collect the money from you.

    6) If the item and arrives and doesn't work, arranging an exchange with a British company is much easier than trying to arrange one transatlantic.

    7) Goods bought in the U.S. sometimes only work with a U.S. mains supply (60Hz & 115V where the British supply is 50Hz and 230V).

    8) Video-related items originating from the U.S. are usually incompatible with any form of British TV (including DVDs).

    9) Manufacturer warranties in Britain are often handled by the British distributor rather than the manufacturer. They may refuse to repair an imported item which means that, if it goes wrong, you will have to pay to have it shipped across the Atlantic twice in order to get it repaired.

    10) Some american sites don't actually ship abroad anyway, and of those that do, some (although by no means all) will only accept a credit card issued by an american bank.

    Ordering from the U.S. certainly can be a viable option, but it's something to be considered very carefully.
     
  7. Steven

    Steven
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  8. ipodstudio

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    I find it better to shop online these days. At least that way I don't get to deal with incompetent sales staff who work on part commission often and will just recommend whatever, as long as your chequebook comes out..
    I know it's not the same as actually handling the things yourselves, though, but most have a generous return policy if you get wrong..There are many online UK retailers that are well-reputed.
     

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