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Thread: Price of being born in the 1950's ?

  1. #1
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    Price of being born in the 1950's ?

    Wife and I went to Best Buy and I gave some Klipsch speakers a listen to. The young lady showing me what they had said have ever heard anything that sound as good as these. I thought good God while they sound okay they didn't sound like any Klipsch I heard before. I think best buy must sell entry level if not Klipsch has really went downhill...IMO. I guess some of it was the listening stage..that store isn't the best place to give much chance to any speaker

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    Administrator Robh3606's Avatar
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    Did you go to one with the Magnolia in the back?? That's where they have the more expensive stuff they sell. At least those are real listening rooms and not on the floor set-ups

    Rob
    "I could be arguing in my spare time"

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    Administrator Mr. Widget's Avatar
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    Back in the day any speaker from Klipsch, Altec, or JBL was a luxury item and they were displayed and demonstrated as such. So, yes I agree with your suggestion that the demo facilities at your typical Best Buy will make any speaker sound less than stellar. Speakers demonstrated at Best Buy today is much like auditioning a table radio or console system at Sears back in the day.

    On the other hand, most Klipsch speakers being sold today are not great in my opinion. I think they sound rather shouty and shrill. Not all Klipsch, they certainly have many good speakers too.


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    Administrator Robh3606's Avatar
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    Back in the day any speaker from Klipsch, Altec, or JBL was a luxury item and they were displayed and demonstrated as such.
    Hello Widget

    It depended on the store back in the day Sam Goody sold JBL's and their store in the big mall had believe it or not S8R Sovereigns, L45 Flairs L300's L200s L100 L88 L36 L26 L16 L212 L50 L40 L220 and so on set up like a modern Best Buy!! No listening room. They also had Klisph Lascalla's and Heresays but no Cornwalls of K horns Advents KLH BIC Allison and those Kabuchi speakers from Kenwood

    I used to love that place!

    Rob
    "I could be arguing in my spare time"

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    Administrator Mr. Widget's Avatar
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    Today at lunch I listened to a pair of Klipsch Heresys that sounded surprisingly good considering the venue.

    Maybe I should post a clip to YouTube?
    Sorry, wrong thread.


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    Administrator Robh3606's Avatar
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    Oh please do I want to hear how they sound!

    Rob
    "I could be arguing in my spare time"

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    Senior Member HCSGuy's Avatar
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    I am sure there have always been good retailers who sell better equipment by displaying and demonstrating it properly, and therefore reap the rewards of greater profitability over the Best Buy style endcap display. When I worked at Circuit City in Santa Barbara, there was an independant shop right next to us whose entire existence was made possible by CC’s poor equipment mix and corporate dictated planagrams that told us where things had to go. We had to put 250Ti’s on an endcap, 3’ apart from each other - no wonder we only sold one pair! If we didn’t close a customer, they would walk next door and get a much better quality demo on equipment that was no better, but they were more likely to close the deal, and at a higher margin. When I moved to San Jose’s Circuit City, we were getting killed by Good Guys, who did a little better at demos, but mainly had smarter buyers who knew what the market wanted. This was ‘93 or so, at the beginning of mass market home theater, and we were screaming at our buyers for center speakers that matched the towers we sold (each mfr sold one center speaker at CC - no upselling), and also to get decent subwoofers - Good Guys was selling Velodyne subs all day long and we had one AudioSource and I think a Kenwood POS. Anyway, getting back to the OP; Best Buy, or Fry’s, or whoever, will only sell good equipment if they have a way to demonstrate it is better, and staff that is good enough and motivated to show it off, and the current business model does not allow them the budget to do that.
    That the internet contains a blog documenting your life does not constitute proof that your existence is valid. Sorry.

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    Quote Originally Posted by HCSGuy View Post
    I am sure there have always been good retailers who sell better equipment by displaying and demonstrating it properly, and therefore reap the rewards of greater profitability over the Best Buy style endcap display. When I worked at Circuit City in Santa Barbara, there was an independant shop right next to us whose entire existence was made possible by CC’s poor equipment mix and corporate dictated planagrams that told us where things had to go. We had to put 250Ti’s on an endcap, 3’ apart from each other - no wonder we only sold one pair! If we didn’t close a customer, they would walk next door and get a much better quality demo on equipment that was no better, but they were more likely to close the deal, and at a higher margin. When I moved to San Jose’s Circuit City, we were getting killed by Good Guys, who did a little better at demos, but mainly had smarter buyers who knew what the market wanted. This was ‘93 or so, at the beginning of mass market home theater, and we were screaming at our buyers for center speakers that matched the towers we sold (each mfr sold one center speaker at CC - no upselling), and also to get decent subwoofers - Good Guys was selling Velodyne subs all day long and we had one AudioSource and I think a Kenwood POS. Anyway, getting back to the OP; Best Buy, or Fry’s, or whoever, will only sell good equipment if they have a way to demonstrate it is better, and staff that is good enough and motivated to show it off, and the current business model does not allow them the budget to do that.
    At one time we had like 5 shops in Ft Smith, AR. All pretty much sold higher end audio with excellent sales people. Seems I remember the one with the hot lady that store was always busy...but she knew her stuff, in fact she owned it. cash and carry

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    Senior Member grumpy's Avatar
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    "Today at lunch I listened to a pair of Klipsch Heresys that sounded surprisingly good considering the venue."

    Kudos to them (the venue with the built-ins) for trying. Some types of music come through sounding very alive. Not an all-rounder for me though.

    First pair of Klipschorns I heard were in San Luis Obispo, CA ... setup with the helper walls. I doubt the store remains (was near Booboo records).
    I recall them trying to sound good (not setup well). Made an impression though, my living room corners still is home to a pair I found years later ... lol.

    Poor demo setups have been a seller's bane from day one. Hard to do and not waste time/space with tire kickers (bye bye Pacific Stereo and Federated). Smaller, dedicated places still seem to still be able to support this (the relatively few that remain).

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    Senior Member SEAWOLF97's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HCSGuy View Post
    When I worked at Circuit City in Santa Barbara.
    went to HS and college there in the late 60's, fond memories of the town, not even aware of any audio stores in the whole area back then.

    Quote Originally Posted by grumpy View Post
    "Today at lunch I listened to a pair of Klipsch Heresys that sounded surprisingly good considering the venue.".
    I've only encountered a single pair of large Klipsh's ever. They were setup in Audio Specialties, here in Portland. Doug (the owner) is the most audio savvy guy that I've ever met. Only got a 5 minute listen, but left unimpressed.

    Tops & mids were clear, but bass was weak & highs a bit shrill ... I'd honestly take a pair of L-100's over those.

    In the 70's Portland had it's share of audio "boutiques" . Snobby places that ignored most that didn't seem to have megabucks in their pockets. Now, I think they are all gone.
    In the 90's we did have a chain called "Incredible Universe" (owned by Tandy). Yeah it sold everything from refrigerators to pizza, but their 2 channel and HT listening rooms were pretty good. A very large store that let the manufactures do their own brand dedicated rooms.
    Bose actually made their sat/sub systems sound good ... JBL wasn't represented but in maybe 1 or 2 area stores.
    “If you think that’s the dumbest thing you’ve ever heard,
    just wait a couple minutes!”

  11. #11
    Administrator Robh3606's Avatar
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    Hello SEAWOLF


    In the 70's Portland had it's share of audio "boutiques" . Snobby places that ignored most that didn't seem to have megabucks in their pockets. Now, I think they are all gone.
    Wow I had the opposite experience. I had 3 boutique stores that I could ride my bike too and they were all really good about showing us stuff. I was 17 at the time with no car but I had a stereo. Bought it with paper route money I had saved for a couple of years. They knew we were to young to afford most of what they had and when a paying customer came in they would excuse themselves. But a couple of those guys we really nice and would let us bring in music just for the fun of it. We had some good times listening to the newest speakers and amps they got in. I learned a lot from them but as your stores all gone now. Shame really.

    Rob
    "I could be arguing in my spare time"

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    Senior Member SEAWOLF97's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robh3606 View Post
    they were all really good about showing us stuff. I was 17 at the time with no car but I had a stereo.
    Rob
    When I returned to CONUS in '72, realized that my PACEX purchased (sight unseen) Pioneer CS-77a speakers were not the TOTL.
    Went into one of our boutiques and sort of shadowed a better-off browser as he asked for demos on the speaker wall.
    That's how I first heard L-100's and Altecs (and scored some demo LP's). The Century's blew me away, but JBL sold at MSRP only and $273 was almost as much as my monthly GI Bill school payments. Just wasn't gonna happen for me at that time.

    I did stop into one audio shop where the salesguy was bored and wanted to play with the gear.
    He kinda latched onto me and said "I've got some speakers here like you've never heard before". Damned right. Played some Ohm Walsh F's. Wow, never forgot that demo, but they were even more unobtainable.

    It wasn't until many years later that I was able to pickup both the L-100's and later some F's on the used market. Just about the same story for my Porsche 911.
    “If you think that’s the dumbest thing you’ve ever heard,
    just wait a couple minutes!”

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    Good Sound

    I was born in the mid-80s and grew up listening to mp3s players and basic Best Buy budget speakers.

    One day (in 2007), while visiting my sister, I was perusing through local classifieds (Pennysaver?) when I saw a posting for "Klipsch Cornwalls - $700".

    The ad stated: "Original owner. Purchased new in 1971. Asking $700 - Firm"

    I thought to myself: "What the hell is this guy thinking? Asking $700!!! for a pair of speakers that were now 35+ years old!"

    BUT - the guy was literally down the street from my sister; so I pretended to be an interested party and asked if I could come audition.

    They were Klipsch Cornwall - Decorator Version - i.e. no veneer, or grill cloth - just regular birch-ply cabinets. Up until that point, I had never seen speakers that big.

    I'm forgetting the tracked the seller played (some classical music) - but that was THE FIRST TIME in my life I heard MUSIC! I was hooked, immediately.

    Told the seller that if he can deliver them for me, I'll run to the bank and be back with his full asking price. They went home with me that night.

    I was totally blown that people 30, 40, 50 years ago were listening to better audio systems than most people in the late 90s, early 2000s (because of the whole mp3 craze?).

    Been hooked on HiFi Since. Went from Cornwall --> La Scala --> Khorn --> JBL 4312B --> JBL 4345s (and many other "hi-fi" speakers along the way).

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    Quote Originally Posted by dkalsi View Post
    I was born in the mid-80s and grew up listening to mp3s players and basic Best Buy budget speakers. ....

    I was totally blown that people 30, 40, 50 years ago were listening to better audio systems than most people in the late 90s, early 2000s
    Good story

    my son (born late '81) grew up with JBL's in the house. When I moved up the audio line, the L100's got gifted to him.

    His aux income is from selling LP's on Discogs (specializes in Punk, 100% positive rating over 4,450 sales) https://www.discogs.com/seller/Bette...sement/profile .
    His only source is vinyl, but friends of his age love to come over to listen to tunes, they remark that they hear things on his system that they didn't know was in the music. He has the only SL-1200 MK 1 that I've ever seen.

    Being on the third floor of a 1905 building (no elevator), the L100's are about right for his needs , tho my 250Ti's will head of to him too, someday.

    He and my daughter have both raided my record collections and for 1971 and 1981 born kids they still like to touch the 60's. Daughter is a part time DJ in Germany and over there they seem to love to hear tunes from that vintage that never made it to their areas.
    “If you think that’s the dumbest thing you’ve ever heard,
    just wait a couple minutes!”

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    Quote Originally Posted by dkalsi View Post
    I was born in the mid-80s and grew up listening to mp3s players and basic Best Buy budget speakers.

    One day (in 2007), while visiting my sister, I was perusing through local classifieds (Pennysaver?) when I saw a posting for "Klipsch Cornwalls - $700".

    The ad stated: "Original owner. Purchased new in 1971. Asking $700 - Firm"

    I thought to myself: "What the hell is this guy thinking? Asking $700!!! for a pair of speakers that were now 35+ years old!"

    BUT - the guy was literally down the street from my sister; so I pretended to be an interested party and asked if I could come audition.

    They were Klipsch Cornwall - Decorator Version - i.e. no veneer, or grill cloth - just regular birch-ply cabinets. Up until that point, I had never seen speakers that big.

    I'm forgetting the tracked the seller played (some classical music) - but that was THE FIRST TIME in my life I heard MUSIC! I was hooked, immediately.

    Told the seller that if he can deliver them for me, I'll run to the bank and be back with his full asking price. They went home with me that night.

    I was totally blown that people 30, 40, 50 years ago were listening to better audio systems than most people in the late 90s, early 2000s (because of the whole mp3 craze?).

    Been hooked on HiFi Since. Went from Cornwall --> La Scala --> Khorn --> JBL 4312B --> JBL 4345s (and many other "hi-fi" speakers along the way).
    You got one heck of a deal, but I guess even in the 70's good stuff wasn't cheap. If I recall seems Klipsch were more $$ than the JBL line here, but those were great sounding speakers no so much like the Best Buy line I heard.

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