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In India imported Hi Fi equipment is OVER PRICED .. TRUE OR FALSE ??

Rega

insane79

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As long as Focal was sold by ProFX, its price was in pair with the international price (in fact, cheaper than US price), but then, as soon as the distributor changed, the price increased by more than 40%. At that time I was planning to purchase Focal Electra 1028Be, which was around 4Lakh MRP, but as soon as the distributor changed, the price jumped to close to 6Lakh and there fore, I dropped my plan of purchasing any Focal products.
If one distributer can sell a product for 4L and find profit in it, the 40% hike by the new distributor is unacceptable.
yeah this did happen but since then all Focal products go for 40-50% off the Mrp anyways ;)

Focal Hi-Fi products has failed miserably in India. Overpriced & Zero Service.

There are many brands to choose from.

Cheers.
 

vivek_r

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This is indeed a difficult topic with many sides to the argument. The entry of Goldfinch Acoustics in another thread sparked me to write (and the fact that I wasn’t cooking in ages).

Before we hang the dealer, some introspection - our behaviour.

I know quite a few friends who come to my place and say “your system costs what?!!” But they drive really expensive cars. While my friends do like and listen to music, but perhaps with the intent that I use my car perhaps - just gets them there. However I don’t know how many of them compare the cost of their car abroad versus in India?

I also don’t grudge people their living. Would I like to get paid more for the work I do - answer is yes! Are the dealers ripping me off? I don’t know.

Let us look at our psyche. I know of a very rich person to whom my wife introduced a tailor - she asked if she could talk him down Rs 100. Perhaps she does with Versace also, but he lives in a slum (and has helped more people during the Covid shut down than her). A man of dignity (and perhaps some false pride too), the tailor said he won’t work with her anymore!

So how much is the dealer ripping you off? Does he have children whom he would like to send abroad for an education?

Also, can he meet the volumes (distributors have minimum volume agreements) needed to make a business if only a tiny section is interested in hifi. Remember the cost of carrying inventory could be at least 15%. And the fellow probabily needs to pledge his house as security.

Furthermore can you imagine the hassle of getting parts back and forth during the warranty period. Or the rental costs in Bombay

Then finally among us the audio loving community also. I think this write up covers it well - want service, the nice listening experience (a decent espresso too perhaps) and want a deal.


https://www.soundstagehifi.com/inde...-uk/1426-hi-fi-shops-the-death-rate-continues


I must admit I havent read this whole thread. On the other side of the coin, I agree with what Panditji says. The dealers don’t promote a brand (can they, with minimum volume commitments?). Many of them are a fount of audio garbage without a feel for the sound or music. Perhaps it’s just a way of making a living for them (home theatre is much better than hifi would be my guess). And renege on service, which is a crime!


And the inability to listen (audition my a$$) before buying is another frustration. What good is having a distributor in Bangalore for me? Or one in Bombay who won’t have a demo sample for home audition? Or are they broken with many a bad experience with ruthless customers? When a dealer says people just ordered it without listening, I grit my teeth. That is perhaps how we buy - good price based on peer and press reviews. So Panditji, can’t blame the dealer.

Why did the prices go up when the distributor changed? We won’t know unless we know their P&L account. Perhaps the first guy ran aground thinking of volumes that never came and second guy decided margins are the way to go, and that anyway people bargain.

I am still friends with my first hifi purchase which was from an audio dealer. He did not give me a discount on the Naim Nait or Roksan turntable even though I had a PhD student scholarship only. However, I am still in touch after all these years and go to him for advice - just the reliability of his thought process and his communication. And a sense of a larger interest in me rather than my wallet. What a good sales guy? What a good person!
 

sandeeprawat

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I’ve bought a lot of used vintage audio gear from Various websites from US and Europe. I’ve only be charged customs once, that too was a small amount as compared to what I was fearing it would be. All items arrived in pristine shape and in time. And not the items were not marked undervalued or as a gift. I’m a believer that you can take a chance with Customs and get it imported from abroad, till the time shipping costs don’t kill you / nobody ships them.
Could you share the sites you have used to purchase these?
 

panditji

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Vivek, while I agree with most of what you said, nobody is forcing anyone into retailing or distributing HiFi. If sending children to a foreign university is the aim, maybe arms dealing is a better bet or opening a chemist shop (super margins, no haggling at all).. Like any other business, the onus is on them to market the product and reach out to as many people as they can.. If people like your prices or brand value or product looks, you are in business else look for another business.. My problem is with distributors ranting and whining that there is no market and justifying higher prices when some others are able to keep prices reasonable for the same stuff... In the end, customers have the choice to pay or not pay unjustified prices...
 

saurabhpach

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Tradera (Sweden) and others through local eBay listings in respective countries. You can look them through hifishark.com

 

sathtom

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Audiogon, Hifishark & Usaudiomart sites are not shipping the pre-owned products directly to India. Is there any good Parcel forwarding service exists which handles customs as well...? There was Borderlinx doing the same but it was shutdown. Any good alternatives...?
 

saurabhpach

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Audiogon, Hifishark & Usaudiomart sites are not shipping the pre-owned products directly to India. Is there any good Parcel forwarding service exists which handles customs as well...? There was Borderlinx doing the same but it was shutdown. Any good alternatives...?
through these websites you contact the individuals selling the stuff. Convince them to ship it to India. 2/10 people will take the pains and do it. I don’t know if any parcel fwd service which has a good track record.
 

vivek_r

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Vivek, while I agree with most of what you said, nobody is forcing anyone into retailing or distributing HiFi. If sending children to a foreign university is the aim, maybe arms dealing is a better bet or opening a chemist shop (super margins, no haggling at all).. Like any other business, the onus is on them to market the product and reach out to as many people as they can.. If people like your prices or brand value or product looks, you are in business else look for another business.. My problem is with distributors ranting and whining that there is no market and justifying higher prices when some others are able to keep prices reasonable for the same stuff... In the end, customers have the choice to pay or not pay unjustified prices...
Fair point - all I am saying is that to curse them is easy, but it is possibly not easy being a dealer in India.

A lot perhaps also depends on the manufacturer (margins vary)? I don’t know this business at all.

But I do hope more Indians buy hifi and learn to appreciate it. The number of small brands overseas is amazing - yes I have also read and re read Valvet amp reviews!!

Dealing in arms? Hahahaha! Sending children abroad is a typical upper middle class aspiration. You can substitute with one foreign holiday every couple of years, or even a decent hifi system ;)
 

HTuser

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Audiogon, Hifishark & Usaudiomart sites are not shipping the pre-owned products directly to India. Is there any good Parcel forwarding service exists which handles customs as well...? There was Borderlinx doing the same but it was shutdown. Any good alternatives...?
Be careful while trying to buy and bring used (pre-owned items), there is an Anti-Dumping duty applied (some times). Better to check and confirm with someone who has done it earlier. If there is no service center for that product in India, you may end up sending it back when service is required.
 

saurabhpach

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Messages
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gwalior
As long as Focal was sold by ProFX, its price was in pair with the international price (in fact, cheaper than US price), but then, as soon as the distributor changed, the price increased by more than 40%. At that time I was planning to purchase Focal Electra 1028Be, which was around 4Lakh MRP, but as soon as the distributor changed, the price jumped to close to 6Lakh and there fore, I dropped my plan of purchasing any Focal products.
If one distributer can sell a product for 4L and find profit in it, the 40% hike by the new distributor is unacceptable.
hey, Me looking for Focal Electra 1038 BE too. Do you have the contacts of the distributor?
 

naj

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Jan 28, 2011
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N Israel
Hello ,
The Hifi market is definitely over priced. Huge Customs + Shipping costs .
What we have lacking in addition is indigenous manufactures.
Hifi gears is still considered as a luxury and is really surprising in the sense as India creates a huge inventory of music every year .
The electronics for basic and robust Amps and Speakers is not complicated but the market is more mass marker oriented rather than finesse and quality . AVR's require research and is understandable but same can be integrated and a product built by using Raspberry Pi etc as foundation is definitely doable .
I always see American makers , many of them are internet direct as source of inspiration . We have so much talent and brains. Please need some people to chip in with their excellent design ideas .

Music is not a luxury anymore , it is a spiritual journey . I hope all understand that . Dont know but do get enticed almost all the times to become a DIY manufacturer although its not my field but know its not complicated at all.
Eg : In India a preamp costs as attached. However an emotiva Pre amp is just about $300 and a 7.1 is just $600 . This is no rocket science .
Thanks - naj
 

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