Which nation across the globe is making the best hi-fi?

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Good point. Years ago I never thought of warranties because I used to change kit quite often, but once I settled down I realised long-term support was important. My system from the late 1990s was imported by Absolute Sounds (still going) and bought from Oxford Audio Consultants (also still there).

Later, buying ATC and Linn, which both offer transferable warranties, I realised how support was reassuring. Neither have broken, but both have helped with queries and spares.

I‘m aware that some of the services cost in the original list price though.
Great to see OAC still going strong, a shop well visited in the dim and distant past, having a good relationship with your local store is obviously helpful but equally buying a product that has excellent post sale support from the manufacturer is just as useful if not more so.

I fully accept that in order to provide a good service/spares set up costs money and this is why many companies do not have that facility, I also accept that I will have to bear some of that cost in the form of a higher initial purchase price but if my product can be serviced or repaired 10 years or more after it was purchased then that buy has been more than good value for money.

In the last few years as I have eased myself back into the world of HiFi I have seen a good number of products launched and then updated in very quick succession, for me this doesn't indicate that the product has been built with long term ownership in mind.

I am viewing some of the HiFi products coming on the market in the same way that I viewed some of the consumer DSLR's of a few years ago where different versions of the same camera were launched every 12-18 months, built to be used and then discarded as the latest model is purchased to replace it.

My aim as I work towards building a system to see me out is to buy British, buy from established reputable brands that offer a long term ownership experience.
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Nov 10, 2023
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Nations with too much time on their hands? I don't see the Palestinians or Somalia putting out much.
Of course, we all want it as cheap as possible, so Asian countries manufacture most of it with their armies of low paid, mostly poorly treated workers.
Interestingly, the actual cost of production of any given item is shockingly low.
Take a pair of £1,000 speakers made in China by a big name brand (designed in Europe or the USA) probably £75 - 100 quid?
The rest is recovering D&D costs/profit margin per unit on expected sales, packaging, shipping, distribution, advertising, dealer mark up, covering the cost of the 'free shipping /free returns policy' that the manufacturer/retailer may offer and of course in the UK 20% of that £1,000 is sales tax to begin with.
That means a £1,000 pair of speakers probably contains 2/4 raw drivers and a couple of tweeters that cost perhaps a fiver each!
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