Buying Blind

I will say that the rep for us has been great otherwise. I don’t lay any blame on him. Last year he arranged for me to get a home demo NDX2 while my dealer was away at a trade show. It was an unused B stock and I ended up keeping it. That was when Audio Plus was still the distributor and well before Vervent took over.

I’m only a few months in to Naim ownership (in the colonies). So far, I like the gear but am not impressed with the customer service. My experience: I’ve sent two e mails to Naim HQ, one a ticket, one a question. Basically, no response. I have no idea who/where an official North American resource is for any product questions, service, etc. Naim is not the main thing with the dealer I bought from, they are far away and I only used them because they had the best price and return policy, but they are not a resource for actual product issues. So, this customer in the colonies does not feel coddled in any way. Not that I’m looking for coddling, but I would think a major and prestegious brand like Naim would have more of a manufacturer/distributor prescence in the USA for their customers, and make it known to them. Other high end audio companies do, foreign and domestic.

1 Like

You’re right, but being U.K. based and in the past having problems with an Ayre power amp (they’re in Colorado US I think), the service from the local distributor, not the dealer who was superb, was frankly useless. Dealer took back the equipment at his loss in the end. So I don’t think this is just an issue for Naim. I suppose the problem is that these are small, specialist companies that find it hard to provide the level of global service they would like.

Naim was fine for me in the US before Vervent bought them out, in terms of support, service and sales. The new owners changed it all. I don’t have enough confidence in it to spend any more money on the brand.


Graham Slee offers a try at home first scheme. They will loan you any product free of charge for a week or so.

1 Like

JdesP, I’ve messaged you.


Thanks, I will give it a try.

Best wishes


1 Like

Your dealer is the first stop, and they are the entryway into the US distributor if additional support is needed.

Post the questions here – you’ll probably get the answers! Honestly, people here often know more than the dealers themselves. This is not unusual; it’s the same with most cars, watches, etc etc etc.

Dealers who provide the ‘best price’ but zero support often are not, overall, the best “deal” to be had.

I cannot disagree that overall support here in the States is marginal at best, BUT you can take matters into your own hands and (1) seek answers here, and (2) find a better dealer.

Back a few years ago, Naim had an employee who specialized in streaming music support. He was active on these forums, would answer questions directly, and would answer emails and provide direct customer support. He got on the phone with me a few times, logged into my system remotely, and fixed issues for me. Unfortunately Naim let him go a couple of years ago, and I’m not aware that there is anyone at HQ today to provide quite that high level of support.

They will survive better if you support them as well as your state by paying the 8% state tax. It is a no brainer.

1 Like

I have a local dealer in Seattle and the service has been fantastic, after purchasing an NDX an issue arose where it had to be sent back for repair. I dropped it off and they shipped it out and delivered and installed upon its return. They did not have a spare streamer but did provide a Naim CD player to use while the streamer was out for repair.

Naim does have a business model that emphasizes that customers work though their dealers for sales/service/repairs. So you may want to call the dealer that sold you the equipment and see if they can be of help.

Good luck with finding a solution to your issue.


Good advice from all. Just to clarify: If I had a local dealer, I would be happy to pay higher prices and local taxes for the service benefit and for supporting local commerce. In my case, it’s a 3+ hour round trip to the nearest Naim dealer, I don’t consider that local. So, if my dealer relationship is going to be a voice on the phone and any problems will entail shipping, I choose to access a retailer with a good reputation, best pricing and initial return options. Don’t see any issue with that, others may disagree. I spoke to the “Naim guy” at the dealer about some product features and installation challenges I had initially. As was pointed out above, I think after looking at this forum for a few days, I knew more than he did. Unless your product is defective and needs professional attention, maybe this forum is the best customer service for Naim equipment.

Thanks, and I have responded with an answer, and then some. :slight_smile:

1 Like

Hi fi is a big expensive I know 3 hours there and back seems like a lot of time but surely that time is well spent if you get the service and support from a dealer you deserve. We’ve had a change here with a new distributor that seems to have dropped the ball but the relationship with my dealer has made sure it hasn’t effected me (yet). I think maintaining a strong relationship with a dealer is so important, god knows they’ll need our help to get through these times.

I don’t think I could ever buy my gear online with someone I don’t know, sounds a bit to scary for me.

If you must use a not-local-to-you dealer, you’re using the wrong one. There is a great option for you in Wayne, IL. Seek and ye shall find.


Agree Bart, he is quite fantastic to work with!

My local dealer is 20 min drive, 40 if the traffic is bad. But they no longer do Linn. When I had my Radikal, Keel, Kandid upgrade I drove down to Brighton. 4 Hour round trip not including the day in Brighton. Totally worth it and I’d drive down there again if I do the Karousel. Sometimes blind 2nd hand is worth a gamble but a good dealer can save you ££££$$$$ in many ways.

Are you allowed to post the great dealer’s info? I’d love a better dealer relationship for next time. And for me, at my stage and in our traffic, a 3 hour drive to an audio dealer is not happening.

Tyler at Next Level AV in Wayne, Illinois. Great guy, very easy to deal with.


I have bought blind, many years ago, both times based on a reviewer that I got to know and trust. I was lucky, he gave descriptions and recommendations that worked, FOR ME. In both cases the dealers were remote. Then I gave up audio/hifi for many years, when I came back I was in a position to upgrade, the speaker manufacturer had no dealer network and agreed that I could take my equipment, audition and place an order, 140 miles each way, then again when they were ready. My wife happily accompanied me both times (another tip on choosing a dealer, do they engage with your wife as well).
Then, I needed a dealer for something else, was given a recommendation and travelled 12 miles, no names, but I will never ever take my trade there again. I then got a further recommendation, I now happily drive 120 miles each way, emails get a reply the same day, I get shown how to set up, get support on the phone whilst I fit a part.
I’m in the UK, my circumstances do not necessarily match anybody else’s, but two sayings come to mind -
Wanting champagne service on a beer budget
and, You pay your money and take your choice.
I’m not trying to be inflammatory, I choose to bypass half a dozen “local” dealers because Once bitten, twice shy.

I buy blind all the time. Trying to do home demos in the US is pretty much impossible. I’ve bought a few dogs. Bluesound node 2i, didn’t sound that good, returned it, Auralic Aries Femto used from a dealer, misrepresented, returned with a lot of bs.