Why do dealers always play demo music loud?

Following up on the "how not to speak to a customer" thread, I ask why dealers seem bent on playing music so bloody loud during a demo? My first request is inevitably "Can you turn it down?" Nobody listens to music sustainably at the levels dealers dial it to. The real demo begins once the dealer hands me the remote and leaves the room.

Original Post

When I demoed the Uniti range last year, the dealer set up the Atom/Neat SX1 system I’d asked to start with, checked whether I wanted him to stay, checked I was OK with the IOS app, handed me the IPAD and said that I should call for him when I wanted to change the system. He then swapped in the Nova/various speakers over the next few hours and allowed me space  to make up my own mind. A very pleasant experience.

Thread title is contrary to my experiences  -  I'm usually the one turning it up, especially when it comes to sussing out speakers, as I've often discovered issues in doing this e.g. some legacy B&W models which hardly stirred with Naim amps and/or which went all bass-lumpy. 

The nice thing about the Uniti Core is I pull out the sled and hard drive take it to my dealer who puts into their Uniti Core, I then get left to enjoy my music. They sit in from time to time, and last time just before I could make a comment about the NDX sounding a bit thin, they put on a power supply. At the time I was listening to Naim 282 vs 252.

Just enough interaction without feeling any pressure, just how I like it.

I just bought the Star and was surprised having the HD outside and connected with short USB cable, that is cool and would be so helpful when I back up my collection.  I'm with a new dealer in Los Angeles and he was great.  I wanted to heat Neat speakers and we had them on while learning about setup and yes it was a bit loud, we toned it down.  Then I asked to hear the Harbeth 7s and was duly impressed with them in Eucalyptus, the sound just flowed and was clearer for me.  I'm also looking to set up a good friend with a small system and think the Atom and my gift of Rega Apollo plus the Harbeth's will impress him.  He's already put his music on a hard drive before he moves.

Frank Yang posted:
Haim Ronen posted:

Low volume will expose the transformers hum.


Actually, I like loud music.

Ditto, though it depends on the music and mood, and a dem needs to encompass all.

My question about deakers is why do they all seem to select jazz? 

Eoink posted:

When I demoed the Uniti range last year, the dealer set up the Atom/Neat SX1 system I’d asked to start with, checked whether I wanted him to stay, checked I was OK with the IOS app, handed me the IPAD and said that I should call for him when I wanted to change the system. He then swapped in the Nova/various speakers over the next few hours and allowed me space  to make up my own mind. A very pleasant experience.

I had exactly the same experience when trying DACs a couple of years ago. Yes, it Is great when the dealer hands over the remote and leaves you to it, 

Ravenswood10 posted:

Mine just gives me the remote and in the old fashioned way insists that I bring my own music with me.

That's fair and begs the question for me "what does bring your own music" mean these days? A smartphone or a USB device?

When I began demoing Naim gear seven years ago I always brought 2 or 3 CDs with me. More recently it seems dealers no longer have CDPs in the demo room. I get handed an i-pad and accept my demo will use canned music, even though I don't stream at home.

Innocent Bystander posted:

My question about deakers is why do they all seem to select jazz? 

Maybe you walk in wearing a beret and sunglasses? Perhaps graying at the temples?

One reason might be that jazz is cleaner, typically well-recorded, and not as demanding on speakers as stuff like heavy production rock or electronica.

joerand posted:
Innocent Bystander posted:

My question about deakers is why do they all seem to select jazz? 

Maybe you walk in wearing a beret and sunglasses? Perhaps graying at the temples?

One reason might be that jazz is cleaner, typically well-recorded, and not as demanding on speakers as stuff like heavy production rock or electronica.

I) no, I) no, iii) hmmm!

Good point re speakers, though on 2 (of 3) occasions I am thinking of I had come to audition speakers that do bass well. However I suppose it just becomes the norm for them.

joerand posted:

That's fair and begs the question for me "what does bring your own music" mean these days? A smartphone or a USB device?

When I began demoing Naim gear seven years ago I always brought 2 or 3 CDs with me. More recently it seems dealers no longer have CDPs in the demo room. I get handed an i-pad and accept my demo will use canned music, even though I don't stream at home.

For people who do stream it is easy to take a USB stick with a selection of music, to plug in or easily transferred to the dealer’s system if he doesn't have on his already (of course to be deleted when you leave).

But maybe these days one has to check first what sources the dealer has. It would be a siMple matter to take one’s own CD player - and highly desirable anyway if the dealer doesn't have an identical model. Ditto streamer, potentially at least, but probably not so TT.

When I recently auditioned DACs I took my Mac Mini (and RF isolator) with me, so it was on my own renderer, so I had all my music to choose from! 

God, I feel sooooo out of date.........

........my demo choices are all on 12” vinyl !!!!

I have heard of mp3 devices but don’t really understand them, and what I have heard didn’t sound too clever to my ears. And when my dealer has used his I-pad or whatever, he can’t always get the tracks that I would like to hear, or his “device” freezes up. And this “freezing” up has happened at two Naim demos that I attended in the past 12 months !

I do have back-up demo music on CD, 7½ tape and cassette but presumably theses are also a bit old fashion ?

My last one was a couple of weeks ago and it was almost compulsory to bring my own music along, which was easy to do - select a selection of styles and drop them as FLACs from the NAS onto a mem stick, which was in the 272 before you could say hat when I got there.

It took about 3 seconds to establish that a) I know how to use the app, b) ditto the streamer and c) that I'll be fine left to it on my own thanks hugely. Except for a brief interruption to deliver the coffee and another to check on one of my tracks, and occasional requests for the dealer to swap things about that was it for couple of hours doing back to back comparisons. Volume was entirely personal choice - it's useful to be able to check out the kit at various levels. The same thing happened at a different dealer with the speakers; here's a coffee, the iPad - give us a shout when you want to swap over to a different pair. I can't imagine the volume and everything else being the choice of the demonstrator.

My last visit  listening to Neats and Harbeth C 7 it took me a while to adjust my ears because it was all new equipment;ment as we talked and showing me the app.  The music was contemporary jazz, not what I cared for, when he plugged in the C7s there was a major difference.  Then I found on a compilation record for movie Almost Famous, the Allman Bros and that was so clear and gave a good complex rock  sound stage.  I think everyone should take a couple CDs of their own that they can easily spot good and bad points in a speaker or system.  I've heard systems that were too edgy and detailed, I'd get fatigue very easily.  Naim has done it right.

mudwolf posted:

My last visit  listening to Neats and Harbeth C 7 it took me a while to adjust my ears because it was all new equipment;ment as we talked and showing me the app.  The music was contemporary jazz, not what I cared for, when he plugged in the C7s there was a major difference.  Then I found on a compilation record for movie Almost Famous, the Allman Bros and that was so clear and gave a good complex rock  sound stage.  I think everyone should take a couple CDs of their own that they can easily spot good and bad points in a speaker or system.  I've heard systems that were too edgy and detailed, I'd get fatigue very easily.  Naim has done it right.

I think this neatly explains the i portance of taking some music you are familiar with (or checkling the dealer has) - and covering the range of types of music you like, as some systems seem only to work well with limited types.

Innocent Bystander posted:
mudwolf posted:

My last visit  listening to Neats and Harbeth C 7 it took me a while to adjust my ears because it was all new equipment;ment as we talked and showing me the app.  The music was contemporary jazz, not what I cared for, when he plugged in the C7s there was a major difference.  Then I found on a compilation record for movie Almost Famous, the Allman Bros and that was so clear and gave a good complex rock  sound stage.  I think everyone should take a couple CDs of their own that they can easily spot good and bad points in a speaker or system.  I've heard systems that were too edgy and detailed, I'd get fatigue very easily.  Naim has done it right.

I think this neatly explains the i portance of taking some music you are familiar with (or checkling the dealer has) - and covering the range of types of music you like, as some systems seem only to work well with limited types.

I was lucky that a while back a friend of a friend left his NDX and HDX with me while he was moving house, with the intention I’d keep them powered up, I got to listen to them in my system, so that when I moved to hard drive and then streaming I’d already had home demos. My Uniti Atom/Nova demo was thus the first I’d done since my 1993 upgrades. Back then I always took my own CDs and LPs along. for the Uniti I trusted the dealer to have some music I’d know and like on their NAS, they did, but if I were to think about an ND555 I might take a NAS with me just in case.

Equipment demos at the dealer are done at our preferred volume. Roadshows, dealer invitation events, and a factory visit have all been  characterised to date by being way too loud. I am confident that I would only get away with that sort of sound pressure at home if my neighbours were deaf/dead/out/several hundred metres distant. 

When I had my first Naim demo of 90/92 I took 10 CDs, a little overkill but I had never done this or knew what to expect. I was listening to my Gilbert&Sullivan recording from the movie and was obsessing on it.   I ended up blowing my budget to twice what I thought I'd buy hearing the Naim system and I needed everything.  I spent the next few months/years in absolute bliss.  The other 9 CDs were not needed...  It takes time for the ear and brain to adjust from one system to the other to hear advantages or disadvantages.

Many years ago I went to a HIFI dealer on Goodge Street in London , to try out typical Naim components.  The person there was very enthusiastic about Naim and he put together a Naim system with Epos Speakers (the combination at that time was considered really popular and viewed by some as the 'real thing' ).  He played the music really loud and I asked him why was it so loud?  He replied thats how Naim was supposed to be played and thats how followers of Naim played their music.  At that time I think Naim still had chrome equipment and the sound was still very basic Naim, all PRAT no soundstage (sound not yet evolved). From that experience it nearly put me off Naim for life as the sound was hard, no warmth, it was enthusiastic but a pain to listen to it.  Despite the experience I went to another HiFi Dealer few years later who put together a slightly different system with Naim components and it was an opposite effect I liked it. Its remarkable how a different dealer may bring different results in experience.

That would be a rare, but savvy dealer. Start with the volume low and let the client determine their upper limit. The SQ should get better with increasing volume, to the listener's comfort level. Do it the other way round and you have a customer with potentially ringing ears then trying to handle a critical evaluation at lower dBs.

Mick P posted:

Chaps

Dealers who play music loud and tap their feet to the sound of the music are living in the 1970's and should retire now for the sake of the industry. It's old fashioned, corny and insults the intelligence of the customer.

Regards

Mick

Not quite sure what the decade has to do with the sound level?

But a wildly tapping foot with one piece of equipment and not with another, especially with music that doesn’t have a prominent beat (or, worse, out of time with the beat!) is a sure indication of a con-merchant, so ignore everything he or she says, and maybe ask if they’ve seen a specualist about their foot...

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