Shipping and Return Policies

Return Policy

Sound Approach will accept returns for most items within 30 days of receipt of shipment(s) by the customer. For the terms, conditions, and exceptions related to shipping, please continue reading below. This does not include Special Order items, as indicated on the webpage for these products.

If the product you have purchased is incorrect, defective, or not to your liking, please contact Sound Approach as soon as possible. In order to find a solution that best suits the customer’s needs, Sound Approach may issue a store credit, refund, or exchange on any qualifying purchase(s) which fall within the 30-day return period and meet eligibility requirements.

Certain products which are returned may be subject to a restocking fee of 20%. Please call and speak to a customer service representative prior to ordering if you have questions or concerns about returns or refunds on any merchandise. If your return is subject to a restocking fee, you will be notified of this fact by email with the return instructions.

Please note that Freight, white glove services, and any special delivery arrangements are non-refundable in the event of returns or cancellation of orders. These services are provide for at additional cost the client when appropriate or by the client's request. These charges are non-refundable.

Important Conditions for Returning Products:

1. In order to process a return, Sound Approach must receive the original box, manual(s), batteries, and all other materials that came with the shipment in order to become eligible to receive a store credit, refund, or exchange on that product. This includes any and all original packing items such as Styrofoam, plastic coverings and/or cardboard inserts.  Each returned product (and included items) must be in like-new condition, fully functional and without any damage, as determined by, and at the discretion of, the Inspection Department staff.

2. Sound Approach will not be held responsible for products damaged during the return shipping process. Products damaged during the return shipping process will not be considered in like-new condition. Damage is considered any loss in functionality of the product through use, wear, transport, or aesthetic issues including, but not limited to; permanent scuffs, dents or scratches, or any other issue discovered by the inspection staff which may impede the ability to re-sell the product at full-market value.

3. If a shipment originally qualified for Free Shipping and the returned item is a non-defective product, the original shipping cost may be deducted from the total of the applicable refund. Some returns are also subject to a 20% restocking fee determined at the discretion of Sound Approach.

4. Special Order items (as indicated on the product webpage) are non-returnable/refundable. Some products can only be returned for an exchange (e.g. Turntable Cartridges/Styli) if they are defective. (Please see the Non-Returnable/Refundable Items sub-section below).

5. Shipping and handling charges on qualifying orders may not be reimbursed unless it is determined that Sound Approach is responsible for the issue necessitating the return of the product(s).

6. In order to return merchandise, customers must first contact Sound Approach by email to request a Return Manufacturer Authorization (RMA) Number. The customer may request this number via email or letter. The customer must state the reason for return when requesting an RMA. This initiates the process for submitting a return for review by the inspection staff for a store credit, refund or exchange. Once a request for a RMA number has been submitted, Sound Approach will respond with an email stating the requirements for return within 1-3 business days of the request.

6. Once an RMA is issued (by email) - it is valid for 14 business days. The return shipment must be dropped off and processed by a shipping carrier before this timeframe expires. After 14 days, the RMA will be canceled and returns will no longer be accepted on that merchandise.

7. Returned products may be subject to a restocking fee of 20% of the original sales cost in addition to the shipping fees, when applicable. Restocking fees will may also be determined at the discretion of Sound Approach based on the quality of the product upon inspection. A restocking fee is assessed when appropriate and as applicable within the Terms and Conditions agreed upon by the customer by completing a purchase and conducting a transaction for goods services with Sound Approach. As such, Sound Approach reserves the right to charge a restocking fee on any and all products it deems necessary when accepting a returned item. By completing a transaction, a customer agrees to these terms.

8. In rare occurrences Sound Approach may determine a higher restocking fee of 25% is applicable. This is reserved for situations in which it can reasonably be considered and established, that light aesthetic damage is visible on the returned product and therefore it cannot be sold at full-market value. Again, this will be at the determination and discretion of the Sound Approach inspection staff.

9. When a returned product fails to meet the established standards or criteria determined by the inspection staff, the return is rejected. When this occurs, no store credit, refund, or exchange will be approved and the product in question will be returned to the client.

10. Please be advised, Sound Approach will not accept returns on products it determines are being purchased for demoing purposes and returned without cause or defect. This includes, but is not limited to, unboxing on YouTube, serial cancellations and or returns, and or situations Sound Approach may identify as such. 

Non-Returnable/Refundable Items:

The following product types are non-returnable or refundable (including, but not limited to): Phono cartridges, Needles/Styli, Alignment Protractors, Stylus-Force Gauges, Cleaning Fluids, Audio Grade Fuses and other one-time-use products or difficult to inspect/test products. Please contact Sound Approach with any questions about the return/refund policies associated with the product(s) prior to purchasing. Any product from a Sound Approach product webpage that states “This product is non-returnable or refundable,” falls into this category. Any product that is listed as a “Special Order” item is also non-returnable or refundable. This includes any made-to-order item, or custom-built product. This classification is stated on the webpage for each qualifying product.

Certain Defective products received by the client which fall into this category may be returned for an exchange. At the discretion of Sound Approach, some items may be returned for an exchange following an inspection to ascertain the validity of a “defective” claim. If a customer receives a defective “Special Order” item, please contact Sound Approach immediately for more information regarding the possibility of exchange or further resolution.

Frequently Asked Questions Related to Shipping & Handling:

How will my order ship?

Sound Approach will ship a customer’s order using the fastest, safest, and most reliable method possible. The most common carriers primarily used by Sound Approach are UPS, USPS and FEDEX. Sound Approach also has established relationships with various other delivery companies nationwide. Every product on the website has been carefully selected to ship by a particular shipping method in order to provide the customer with an optimal delivery experience. When a customer places an order, UPS Ground is set as the default shipping method for each product. Sound Approach reserves the right to select a different shipping carrier, for any reason, to process and ship an order after a transaction has been completed.

Will I receive a Tracking Number?

When an order ships, the customer will be notified via the email address provided in an account or during guest checkout. Included in this email will be a Tracking Number for each shipment, or for each individual parcel within an order shipping in more than one box. Sound Approach encourages customers to track their package online or over the phone with the shipment carrier. Most shipping companies will provide an estimated delivery date. Be sure to contact Sound Approach if anything seems unusual with the progress of the shipment. If an order has been shipped but the customer is unable to locate a tracking notification email, please check the “SPAM” folder or contact Sound Approach at 877-370-1972 for more information.

On rare occasions, a shipment will not have an associated tracking number. When this occurs, Sound Approach will do it’s best to ensure the customer is made aware of this fact after the transaction has taken place. In even rarer cases, providing the tracking number is not possible before delivery of a package. If a tracking number was not sent out before delivery, Sound Approach may add the tracking number to the account history later (if it is received following delivery) in order to demonstrate proof of delivery. If this happens, Sound Approach will not generate an email to the customer updating them with the tracking number, but will simply add it to the customer’s account.

How are small parcels shipped?

Whenever possible, Sound Approach will ship smaller, lighter items via UPS or USPS. These companies provide the fastest and most reliable method of shipping available for many items sold by Sound Approach. Depending on how close a customer is to the shipping warehouse, an item will typically arrive between 1 and 6 business days after it leaves the warehouse. Shipping timeframes may be affected by natural disasters, inclement weather or interruptions in air or ground transport, etc. (this list is not all encompassing).

Sound Approach is not responsible for any item lost, stolen or damaged after it has been received by the customer. Sound Approach is not responsible for the condition or safety of an item until it is returned and is once again in Sound Approach’s custody, to be assessed for potential store credit, refund, or exchange. Customers are encouraged to purchase optional warranty coverage for their products when appropriate to cover damages from loss, theft, or accident that occur after their receipt of a shipment or during return shipment to Sound Approach.

Why will an item be shipped via Freight?

Many items sold by Sound Approach are too large or too heavy to ship using a standard parcel carrier. Therefore, the best option is to ship it using a freight carrier. Truck freight is different than standard UPS or US Postal Mail in that the customer will be responsible for carrying the product from the back of the truck into their residential or commercial building. Truck Freight also differs from a regular parcel carrier in that, for residential deliveries, customers will be contacted by the shipping carrier to schedule a delivery appointment. Most companies offer appointment windows (usually 2-4 hours) between 8:00 am and 5:00 pm EST, Monday through Friday.

It is important to remember when a shipment is arriving by truck freight, the customer is responsible for inspecting the package at the time of delivery. If the shipment container (e.g. cardboard box) has any apparent damage, or if there is any reason to be at all concerned about damage, it is the customer’s responsibility to identify it at this stage by reporting it on the Bill of Lading before accepting a delivery. This simply ensures that if there is any damage it will be easier to take care of through the proper channels with the shipping/freight company.

How does this apply to me as the customer?

If a customer is ordering a very large item, please keep in mind that it may require more than one person to help unload it. Oftentimes the customer is responsible for offloading and/or moving the delivery from the freight truck to the residence or commercial building themselves. Alternatively, most truck freight companies offer additional services to help customers move items from the truck into a residence or commercial building. After a customer has received an email with the tracking information, they can contact the shipper directly to inquire about additional services. As the recipient, customers are held responsible for payment to the shipping/freight carrier for any additional services required for delivery of an order. This includes but is not limited to, a lift gate and/or pallet moving services. In many instances, the delivery address must be capable of allowing for a large semi or delivery truck to offload a large or heavy shipment. Sound Approach is in no way responsible for the payment of additional services requested by the client directly from the freight/shipping company.

If a freight/shipping company attempts to make a delivery and the customer is not available to accept this delivery, in some cases a redelivery fee will be charged by the freight/shipping company. Sound Approach is in no way responsible for the payment of redelivery fees charged by a freight/shipping company in attempt to deliver products to the customer. This, and any other associated fees, is solely the responsibility of the customer.

What is the Truck Freight Threshold?

This method of shipping defines where a freight company will deliver a customer’s order. In this case it means: Up to the threshold of the residence or commercial building. For a residential delivery this means to a garage or front door. For a commercial building, the freight threshold is generally at the loading/unloading dock.

Will Truck Freight Drivers help me assemble my order?

Unfortunately, Freight drivers are not authorized to perform any assembly services of products purchased through Sound Approach, nor can they deliver it to the room of choice inside a residence or commercial building. After Sound Approach emails the tracking information, customers can contact the shipper directly to arrange for any additional services that they need or would like. Customers will be responsible for paying the truck freight carrier directly for any additional services.

Will I receive a tracking number if my order is shipped via Freight?

When an item ships via freight truck, customers will receive an email from Sound Approach with a PRO tracking number. Customers can also log into their account with Sound Approach to see the corresponding freight company’s website address and/or PRO tracking number. The freight company will call customers at the phone number listed on their order before delivery to arrange an agreeable delivery date and time. In the case of freight truck delivery, the “free shipping” includes delivery to a home or office, but does not include “inside” delivery or any additional services requested by the customer directly through the freight company. Customers may contact the freight company directly if they need any additional services. Sound Approach is not responsible for payment of any additional services required by the customer beyond shipment of the order. There is usually a charge for inside delivery, varying in price, depending on the freight carrier. If a customer lives on a second or upper level floor, the charge may be greater.

How long after placing my order will my package ship?

Most local warehouse in-stock items typically ship within 1-3 business days following order placement. Local warehouse orders placed before 12:00 noon EST Monday – Friday are processed the same day that the order is placed. Non-local warehouse orders are sent to a shipping or manufacturing warehouse the same or next business day (Monday through Friday) and most are shipped within 24-72 hours of processing through the warehouse. Orders received after 12:00 noon EST will generally be processed before 9:00am the following business day (excluding Saturdays and Sundays). Sound Approach will make every effort to meet shipping deadlines as specified here.

Occasionally, orders may be delayed by unforeseen circumstances or difficulties. Due to the logistics of extensive inventories and availability at various warehouses and distributors, many items are drop-shipped to customers directly from affiliate warehouses, distributors or manufacturers. In some cases, shipment of these orders may be delayed for reasons beyond Sound Approach’s control. When this occurs, Sound Approach will make every effort to inform the client at the contact information (email and/or phone number) provided by the customer at the time of purchase. Sound Approach will make every attempt to keep the client informed of any delay or continued delay.

Will Sound Approach ship to an address that is not my home address?

Yes. However, if there is any indication that a credit card is being used without consent of the cardholder, Sound Approach will attempt to verify with the cardholder that the purchase is authorized before shipment can occur. This may result in a shipping delay. If a purchase cannot be verified or is suspected to be fraud, Sound Approach will cancel and refund the order as quickly as possible. The process of verification, cancellation and refunds can take up to several business days.

Does Sound Approach ship outside of the continental United States?

Yes. Sound Approach will ship outside the continental US and internationally. An International shipment will take longer to process and arrive at its destination than a shipment within the continental US. Sound Approach has no control over a package once it leaves the warehouse. Orders can be delayed at customs when leaving or entering different countries. It’s important for customers to be patient as it may take longer for an international shipment to arrive at its destination. These shipments may be subject to additional local fees which are the sole responsibility of the customer receiving the shipment. Sound Approach is not responsible for the payment of any local fees needed to receive a shipment.

Please be advised that certain brands cannot be sold and shipped overseas. This includes (but is not limited to): Electrocompaniet, ATI Amplifier Technologies, WireWorld, & StraightWire. If any sales come in to be shipped internationally, Sound Approach reserves the rigth to reject a sale and process a cancellation and refund at their discretion. 

Will the return shipping be free if I need to return an item?

If a customer decides they want to return a non-defective item, Sound Approach is not responsible for the shipping costs to ship the item back to the appropriate warehouse. If the item is defective for any reason, Sound Approach will either send a customer a return shipping label, or will reimburse the cost of return shipping following inspection of the returned item. If it is found not to be defective, customers will not be reimbursed for the shipping costs to or from Sound Approach.

When is Free Shipping available?

Items marked Free Shipping on the product page will ship for free within the Continental United States only. Free Shipping is only offered on shipments totaling $35.00 or more. International shipments (including US States outside of the continental US) will always be charged a shipping and handling fee based on the average USPS rates for shipping to the customers location. Shipping costs are calculated by multiplying the estimated weight of an item(s) by an average shipping and handling cost for that weight through an International Carrier.

Free Shipping does not apply to any order totaling less than $35.00.

Sound Approach reserves the right to charge a shipping fee at its discretion.

Please keep in mind that Alaska, Hawaii, and US Territories are considered International and therefore are not eligible for the Free Shipping offer.

Do I have to pay Sales Tax on my purchase?

If a customer’s package is being shipped to California or Virginia then a sales tax will be charged. Virginia state tax is 6% and California has a state tax of 7.25%, respectively. If customers are ordering from California or Virginia, but the shipment’s destination is in another state that is not California or Virginia, the customer will not be charged sales tax on that order.

*Tax Rates listed are subject to change according to state law.

Who do I contact for any additional questions or concerns regarding a product, order or shipment?

If a customer has questions or concerns regarding a product, order or shipment and delivery information, please contact the Customer Service Department via email at or call Sound Approach directly at 877-370-1972. Office hours of operation are Monday-Friday 8 am – 4 pm. An email request for information will typically be answered on the same or next business day. Customer Service Representatives are available anytime during the hours of operation to take your call.

Limitation of Liability

In no event shall Sound Approach or its officers, directors, employees, agents, successors, subsidiaries, distributors, affiliates, or third parties providing information on this website or via other channels, be liable to any user of the website or any other person or entity for any direct, indirect, special, incidental, punitive, consequential or exemplary damages (including, but not limited to), damages for loss of profits, loss of data, or loss of use arising out of the use or inability to use the site or any information contained therein, whether based upon warranty, contract, tort, or otherwise, even if Sound Approach has been advised of or should have known of the possibility of such damages or losses.