For the last couple of weeks was hoping to secure a 789 at one of the local CC's at 40% off but of course all were sold while they were 30% off. Wasn't really thinking 889 because of the price differential but when receivers were dropped to 50% off thought I would try to find an 889 at one of the 6 stores. Most stores didn't even have any receivers remaining though I did find one store with one 889 remaining. The sales staff were using it for their personal music to play over some very nice speakers in their now almost empty store. Approached salesperson #1 and he told me someone had bought it. I asked why was it still in the store and he just gave me a blank stare. I then said if someone had bought it why wasn't there a "sold" sign on it? Again, blank stare.
He walked away as my questions were too much for him. Decided to go the liquidation manager for a responsible answer. Asked her the same thing. She replied that no one had purchased it and everything in the store was for sale. I agreed; after all this is a liquidation sale, not a "hold some merchandise for our sale staff until the last day" kind of sale. She asked me to wait while she approached salesperson #1 who then was quickly joined by salesperson #2. From a distance both salespeople glanced over at me with a look that said "we're not letting that SOB take our only source of music as we still have 9 days remaining in the liquidation." Hoping that I misinterpreted their glance I awaited the response from the liquidation manager. Her response was(I am not making this up) "I can let you buy it but you can't pick it up until the night of the last day of the sale March 8."
Okay, I have to admit this response threw me. I couldn't respond intelligently until I had some food in my stomach so I left to plan a new strategy. As I was leaving I noticed they has strung up police tape so no one else could get close to the 889 and the speakers they connected to it. Apparently they didn't want to address the issue with anyone else. The sales staff had convinced the meek liquidator to NOT
sell something. Isn't this the antithesis of a liquidation? Before heading back in I decided I needed to satisfy 2 issues. If I'm putting down money I'm not leaving without the receiver in my hands and I'm not buying if there is not a Audyssey DM-A409 microphone included. First thing I did when I went back in an hour later was to seek out salesperson #3 and ask him where all the accessories are for the display receivers(which are all gone now)? Which brings up another question: why would you buy a display model and not take your remote, manual and microphone with you?
Anyway, he pointed out a large plastic box that they just threw stuff in, some loose and some in ziplocs. After hunting a bit through the debris I was very fortunate to find a 1098 remote and a DM-A409 microphone in a sealed ziploc. While holding those in my hand I approached the liquidation manager and told her I would really like to buy the 889 NOW and take it home NOW. She says it's already been sold and then she recognizes me from earlier and changes her story to "that unit is not for sale." I diplomatically replied that I understood that the sales staff wants to have music blaring for the next 9 days(I mean c'mon, you can't ask people to work without music can you?) but that I found one remaining Samsung receiver(Samsung?)on the shelf and they could hook that up and still have their music. She just gave me this look like "you're not going to give up, are you?" and then repeated what she had told me earlier about buying it now but picking it up later. I said you can't be serious because this raises a couple of important issues. All sales are "final" and everything is sold "as is." If I put my money down now who's to say what happens to the receiver in the next 8 days? The remote goes missing, a salesperson spills a Red Bull on it, etc. When I come to pick it up in 8 days and it's not in as good condition as it is now or is missing the remote do I get a refund? a reduction in price? No she says, all sales are final. I replied that policy makes sense if the customer LEAVES THE STORE WITH THE MERCHANDISE IMMEDIATELY AFTER PURCHASE.
I helped her out by saying "look, why don't we ask the store manager(CC employee) what he thinks about this?" She reluctantly agreed which really didn't matter because I would have gone directly to him anyway. As fortune would have it the CC manager was one of the nicest people I have come across in any aspect of the retail trade. He did not hesitate to say absolutely it's for sale which of course the liquidator quickly protested about the hardship this would inflict on the sales staff by not having any music.
"What will we use for music?" she cried. "We'll pump it through our own system" he replied. "But we've already disconnected the ceiling speakers" she quickly answered. "Then we'll bring in a boombox" he smartly replied. I could no longer stand by silently so I blurted out "there is still one Samsung receiver on the shelf" as it became apparent she didn't want to offer that up as a solution even though I told her about it just a few minutes ago. Feeling defeated that she did all she could do to NOT sell the Denon, she thankfully slumped away. Now I would deal only with a rational individual.
At first I was worried that the manager would ask one of the sales staff to bring the receiver up to the register. I had visions of a staff member doing who knows what to the connections in the rear as an act of revenge to the mean man that took our receiver. I was very pleased to see that the manager himself went to the back of the store to disconnect the speaker wires and bring the receiver and remote to the front. The best part was when he turned the volume down and the power off before disconnecting. Picture a very large room with music blaring then all of the sudden silence. Salespeople #1, #2 & #3 were not happy campers.
As he was ringing me up salesperson #1 asks with a pout "what are we suppose to do for music?" Manager says go hook up the Samsung(Samsung?) receiver. Salesperson replies he can't, that it's part of a HTIB. Manager deftly replies "well, do you want music or not because that's the only way you're going to get it." I'm liking this guy more every minute. I present the extra remote control that I came across in the bin and asked him if I could have it seeing as there are no longer any Denon receivers remaining in the store. He said absolutely. Selling it will cover the sales tax. $400 for this receiver was something I couldn't pass up. Moral to this incredibly long story is to be incredibly persistent and not to let person #1, #2 or even #3 to discourage you from your quest as you will be told misinformation and possibly be lied to during your pursuit.
P.S. Quick side note: Out here in So Cal TWC is offering HDMI 1.3 cables for free, 6' & 10'. Just went in to one of their offices and picked up a couple. Didn't even ask my name--I could have been a non-TWC customer. Your experience may vary.