Originally Posted by JazzGuyy
I would assume that import duties as well as taxes are the principal factors.
No. The principal factor is market differences:
US customers are quicker to buy (less time spent on sales people, and more on-line sales)
US customers are more willing to buy without a trial (no open-box units needed, no demo needed, more on-line sales)
US customers that end up disliking the unit are less likely to return it for a refund.
US customers make spontaneous purchases. Some units never leave the box (Europeans just shake their heads in disbelief).
US customers don't require prices with margins for haggle.
European customers are generally way more cautious. They need a store demo. They want to try the unit in their home. They are quick to excersize the government stipulated rights of a 14 day return. The stores end up with used units that they have to sell at low cost.
And maybe most important: In Europe people are accustomed to a haggle margin. Somebody recently told me NOBODY pays MSRP. With that attitude, resellers need a margin for haggle, which is not the case with the US prices.
I think that Europeans may not understand that the US prices $499/$999 have NO room for haggling. People pay these prices AND shipping on top! (I noticed that even MusicDirect will charge shipping on the $1199 Oppo 105 although they normally offer free shipping).
Hope this makes things a little bit clear why the Euro prices are what they are. It's not rocket science!