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Hi Fi Equipment!
smg
post Jun 18 2002, 03:09
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I've been away for a week and tring to catch-up on whats been going on (can't find a thread on secret mailing list) But i've been reading up on

http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/forums/showth...=&threadid=2223

Everyone had valid points some i agreed with some i didn't. So it got me wondering what sort of Hi Fi Equipment everyone uses to base their opions on. So I tought I'd get a discusion going on equipment.
I myself collect and restore what I call clasic (1967 - 1980) equipment. Back when a Stereo was a Stereo.
My main system is
Receiver: Marantz 2600. 300 watts @ 8ohms 20Hz - >20KHz THD 0.05% at 300 watts. Capacitors the size of 12oz beer cans. I could go on and on forever about this unit. Never really got into amp/preamp
Turntable: Technics SL1600.......
CD Changer: Pioneer PD-F905 - Nothing spectacular
Speakers: Marantz Imperial 9. 2-10" woofers 4 Midrange drivers 2 Tweeter drivers
20Hz - >20KHz SPL 100 db....I could go on forever over these also.

So...just wondering what everyone else is using.

BTW Fewtch The reason for my wanting to put my Lps on hard drive I've some irreplacable Music on those Lps

BTW so everyone knows where i'm coming from I grew up in the sixty's When we imearsed are self in our music. ( Sometimes with a little help )
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fewtch
post Jun 18 2002, 04:00
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QUOTE
Originally posted by smg
Turntable:  Technics SL1600.......

That's a nice one, a real 'tweaker's' turntable from the looks of it. I almost dropped in a bid on one at one point, just to have it... very nice looking (and I'd guess nice-operating too, if kept 'in tweak' properly wink.gif.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewI...item=1360647734

As for your question, I don't really use major stereo equipment, I live in a condominium where everything is very closely together, and a lot of people around here (not me though) get up early & work on tight schedules. Neighbors would be calling the police if I cranked something like your Marantz system even to 5% of max volume biggrin.gif.

Headphones, headphones...


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smg
post Jun 18 2002, 04:34
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fewtch I certainly can understand your situtation with the condo. However you sound like someone who could get into classic equipment. I'm telling you the secret that i've known about these systems Is getting out and someday you won't be able to afford one. The system I've been after for awile is now out of my present price range. (Sansui G33000). Check out the specs. This unit is over 100lbs
(Pioneer SX1980) Check out the specs. Start out with something small (EBAY)
IMHO Sansui G series 8000 9000 8700 9700
Sansui 7070 8080 9090
Marantz model 2270 and above
Pioneer SX1050 and above.
Get them while you can. You won't regret it
BTW the Technics SL1600 was part of my original system I bought it new in 1976.
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fewtch
post Jun 18 2002, 05:00
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QUOTE
Originally posted by smg
fewtch  I certainly can understand your situtation with the condo.  However you sound like someone who could get into classic equipment.

Sure, I probably could. Some of it is bordering on 30 years old though, a point will arrive where the electrolytic caps start drying out, pots & switches need replacing, etc... maybe I should take a few more electronics classes first smile.gif.

But yeah, I can appreciate that stuff. Even "non-classic" stuff from the 70's & 80's was/is better in many ways than recent stuff. Modern electronic equipment is designed to wear out fast, so people will go spend money on new stuff -- seems like "planned obsolescence" started somewhere in the early to mid-80's. I can still remember the $400 stereo system my parents had in the mid 70's (3 foot high speakers with large woofers, midrange & tweeter, everything glass & brushed aluminum, glowing dials, heavy flywheel on the tuner, 100 watts/channel)... these days, that amount of cash (granted, money doesn't go as far) will buy a bookshelf system made of cheap plastic, or a poor quality Dolby 5.1 system with tiny speakers.


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Pio2001
post Jun 18 2002, 12:30
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QUOTE
Originally posted by smg
wondering what sort of Hi Fi Equipment everyone uses to base their opions on. 


Digital CD Playback in the computer :
CD Reader, Winamp 2, SQRsoft crossfading plugin, (see the speakers for the DSP)
Marian Marc 2 optical output

Sony DTC 55ES DAT deck. The heads are dead, and it costs 380 each two years to change them... I gave up. I kept it as a DAC. I like it very much. I tryed to upgrade for a standalone DAC : a cheap Micromega Microdac, 350 , but it was worse than the built-in DAC :mad:

Technics SL-3100 turntable... a mysterious unreferenced model. I removed the lower plate and it stands on two spikes that bear the drum, and one spike that bear the axis of the arm, all on a 60 kg piece of stone.
Stanton Trackmaster EL catridge : very large and accurate stereo image.
Vinyls are played directly on the drum, no slipmat. Two upside down glasses weight on the record to prevent it from slipping.

Yamaha tuner (560 ?), for local stations.

Teac V2030S for cassetes (usually TDK MA with Dolby C), now obsolete compared to CDR burning.

Audio Control 10 2x10 bands graphic equalizer, now replaced with Shibata's DSP for Winamp, exept for vinyls, or computer games.

Arcam Diva A85 ampli, 130 W / 4 Ohm

Dynaudio Gemini speakers, hand made kits, quite high end. Amazing low frequency power for their size.

Equalization : parametric settings in Shibatch super equalizer :
Right : -30 db from 40 to 62 Hz
Left : -10 db from 42 to 58 Hz (in order to kill a resonance in the room)
Both : -1.5 db from 2000 to 20000 Hz in order to correct a defect in the original Gemini filter.
Stand on stones put on some kind of white concrete blocs.
Width of stereo : 180
I know it's not advised, but that's just me : I like being at the first row in theatre, and having 180 stereo listening to music (because I was addicted to headphones maybe).

Line cables : RG179bu, silver plated. Tested in the monitor loop of the ampli : nothing modified on the sound.
I think their quality comes froim their tiny size : it allow to sold them very cleanly, using very little tin.

Speaker cables : huge coaxial A2 used for urban digital TV and Internet. 12mm2 solid copper core.

AKG K-400 headphones (treble correctors missing), too much highs.

Edit :

The DAT acts as both DAC and ADC : it is wired to the ampli and the computer, so that I can record any source on the computer.
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kritip
post Jun 18 2002, 13:16
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I have been slowly removing all of my HiFi infavor of a PC centered multimedia system so now the only components i have are as follows:

Yamaha DSP A592 5.1 channel amp (only 5.1 inputs though, not digital decoding)
With Bi-Wire capability

Sony MDS-JE520 Minidisc Recorder (VERY VERY rarely used)

B&W D601 Series 2 Stereo Speakers.
Bi-wired

Speker cable, unknown at the moment, but won lots of awards and rather thick copper, cost about 14 per meter


My output from my computer is a Turtle Beach Santa Cruz.

All of my Audio is FLAC'ed so therefore lossless, and my computer holds all of my CD's and few of my records and also my ripped DVD's to play back on teh TV


I the future i would like a better amp ( preferably just stereo for audio playback and kepp my yamaha for films etc. )My dads Audiolad A8000 is very sweet! but would like optical in and a new souncard to eliminate electrical interference, Any Suggestions on these??

My minidisc player will be going soon as well.


Overall, not to bad a system, more than adequate for me and probably better than some others!

Cheers,
Kristian
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ErikS
post Jun 18 2002, 13:28
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QUOTE
Originally posted by kritip
I have been slowly removing all of my HiFi infavor of a PC centered multimedia system


How do you solve the problem with noise from the computer? I've reduced speed of fans and isolated as much as I dare with regard to heat, but it is still not quiet enough. Any other tricks worth trying?
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kritip
post Jun 18 2002, 14:37
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QUOTE
How do you solve the problem with noise from the computer? I've reduced speed of fans and isolated as much as I dare with regard to heat, but it is still not quiet enough. Any other tricks worth trying?


Basically, reducing fan speeds and removing some fans as well as mounting hard disks with rubber grommits etc to reduce vibrations. I shoul be water cooling most stuff very soon and that will only leave hard disk noise which i've just been experimenting with and destroyed a drive. See here for more:

HERE

But my main idea is to create a low power, ie via EPIA 566 fanless system with a wireless network card which boots of a server in another room meaning no hardive in order to play music.
The server can then be as noisy as it likes and the entertainment PC can be lugged about anywhere in the house!!

Cheers

Kristian
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tonderai
post Jun 18 2002, 14:55
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I've just bought most of my system biggrin.gif So here it is:

Edirol UA-5 sound card (external usb, 24/96, with digital (coaxial + optical) and analogue ins/outs, and variable sample rate (44.1, 48, and 96 play + record)

NAD C350 stereo amplifier

B&W DM303 stereo speakers, and a Mordaunt-Short subwoofer (MSW300, i think)

NAD C321i CD player (the 20bit DAC here still sounds better than the 24bit one on the edirol)

Pro-ject Debut Phono turnable with Ortofan cartridge.


My laptop has a tiny hard-drive (only 2GB free sad.gif ) so i play mpc standards off cdrs by sorted by genre. Not too bad using 950MB cds

got to go, cheers, tonderai
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ben
post Jun 18 2002, 16:45
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Here's mine:

1) Winamp using MAD and 48khz output, Diamond Multimedia MX300
2) Marantz CD-67SE CD player
3) Cary Audio Design SLP-98 Preamp
4) Custom 7watt amplifier
5) Custom speakers
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kennedyb4
post Jun 18 2002, 17:47
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Almost all digital from computer now.

1 SBlive card
2 Winamp with Mad, Peters new re-sample plug-in, Shibata-sans eq
3spdif out to Yamaha rx 795a amp
4 B&W 602 S2 speakers (unbelievable value)
5 Paradigm PS 1200 Subwoofer
6 Nice Sony three head cassette deck that now gathers dust.
7 Sony PS X6 turntable with ortofon moving coil cartridge.
8 JVC DVD/SVCD Player
9 Koss KSC 35's for private listening.
10 Sony DFS 18 Portable cd player. Plays cd/rw flawlessly. Pick a handfull, burn and jog:D

Most excellently happy with all this except the computer is too loud. That's next to fix.
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Annuka
post Jun 19 2002, 00:37
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QUOTE
Originally posted by smg

So...just wondering what everyone else is using.


- Snell .5 speaker set, E.5, SR.5 and CR.5
- Sony VA8ES integrated (analog) surround amp.
- Sony EP90ES DAC with Dolby Digital
- Sony XA20ES cd player, not used much
- Pioneer DVL-909 laserdisc and dvd player
- Quiet computer with SB Live and digital cable to DAC
- 40 sqare meter listening room (5x8 meters) with fantastic accoustics, excellent lights and cabling mostly inside the walls.
- Bi-wiring with network cables.
- Cheap, but effiencient, AC filter
- Soundstyle rack on spikes - recudes vibrations to hifi units

Most of it purchased 1998.
Still satisfied with it after four years. Hope to keep the system for at least 10 years.
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fewtch
post Jun 19 2002, 00:42
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QUOTE
Originally posted by Annuka
Most of it purchased 1998. 
Still satisfied with it after four years. Hope to keep the system for at least 10 years.

In 10 years, the computer is gonna look like a 386SX-20 looks now... you might think about changing or upgrading that part of it, at least... biggrin.gif


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smg
post Jun 19 2002, 03:14
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Wide variaty Thats for sure. Everything from pure analog to pure digital and some hybrids mixed in. The only thing that I've seriously never thought of trying were headphones. Sounds like I need to consider a pair.

Pio2001 I'm trying to understand this statement: "Vinyls are played directly on the drum, no slipmat. Two upside down glasses weight on the record to prevent it from slipping".

Is there a purpose to this method that I'm unaware of?
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bryant
post Jun 19 2002, 06:26
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QUOTE
Originally posted by smg
Wide variaty Thats for sure.  Everything from pure analog to pure digital and some hybrids mixed in.

True, but not all that wide a variety if you consider it's almost all [b]solid state!
rolleyes.gif

Heres my main listening system:

McIntosh MX-110 stereo tuner/preamp (all vacuum tube, circa 1965)
McIntosh MC-30 monoblock amplifiers (all vacuum tube, circa 1955)
Ampex 960 2-track stereo reel-to-reel deck (all vacuum tube, circa 1960)
ElectroVoice Interface: C (series II) equalized 3-way speakers (circa 1980)
Linn Basik turntable with Akito arm and Shure V15 cartridge
Philips DCC-900 digital compact cassette deck
Technics DVD-Audio player

My computer system:

M-Audio Delta-Dio 2496 audio card
MSB Technology Link II 24/96 DAC
Audio Alchemy headphone amplifier
Sennheiser HD-580 headphones
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Pio2001
post Jun 19 2002, 11:48
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QUOTE
Originally posted by smg

Pio2001 I'm trying to understand this statement: "Vinyls are played directly on the drum, no slipmat. Two upside down glasses weight on the record to prevent it from slipping". 

Is there a purpose to this method that I'm unaware of?


I found the sound better when the vinyl was put directly on metal (or glass, I started this with the Rega Planar 3 tunrtable) instead of cloth or rubber.

There is a drawback : the metal drum of the Technics turntable has a little step just under the pregroove of the bottom side of the record. Putting the record on it, then moving it to center it properly increases the background noise of the pre groove, that gets slightly scratched.

I didn't carefully pay attention, but I think on the other hand that slipmats gather dust, contrary to rubber or glass/metal.

Now that you're asking, I guess I'll have to record and ABX it anyway...
Well, ABX will be easy, since the rubber is 5 mm thick, and there is a difference in treble just because the stylus is no more horizontal.
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godzilla525
post Jun 20 2002, 09:22
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Time to cue up the laugh track... but before you do, note that I read the sale papers!

Unfortunately I don't have any rich audiophile relatives to get nice hand-me-down 70's amps from so...

Points of origin:

Optimus SCT-56 dual casette deck, MFG by Pioneer (purchased on clearance--RCA switchover)
- Full Auto Reverse, All electric (no mechanical pushbuttons except for eject)
- Automatic tape bias selection, Type I, II, IV
- Full-time Dolby HX Pro, NR can be B, C, or off
- Works with Reciever's wireless remote

Optimus CD-8200 25-disc changer, MFG by Pioneer (gift)
- Marginal-quality internal 1-bit DAC bypassed by means of optical-out
- Plays my CD-R's but will not play CD-RWs
- Also compatible with Receiver's remote and has its own as well

Technics SL-D3 Turntable (gift)
- There's a thread I started here devoted to it smile.gif

Quasar VHQ560 VCR
- 4-head Hi-Fi Stereo VHS and dBx Stereo Tuner

Points of convergence:

Computer:
- Terratec EWX24/96 in Receiver's Tape Monitor loop
- Windows XP Pro/Corp or whatever the heck bulk liscenced is (legal copy)
- Optical output from CD-changer is connected to the EWX
- Yamaha SoftSynth legally (?) ganked from Corp. WinXP Update site biggrin.gif
- Winamp with MAD 0.14b plugin (is it me or is the MAD project dead?)
- Creative DVD8400E 8x/40x DVD-ROM (Panasonic SR-8585)
- Lite-On LTR-32123S 32x/12x/40x CD-RW drive (I use Taiyo Yuden CD-R discs burned at 4x or 8x for audio)
- Creative Dxr3 decoder card (Real Magic Hollywood +) if I feel like it.
- 80GB Maxtor for storage space

Receiver: Optimus STAV-3370 Dolby Pro-Logic, MFG by Pioneer (sale item)
- Two-speed, always-on 60mm fan-cooled tunnel heatsink with all discrete TO-3PL output devices.
-- When it gets hot, the fan will get the full 24VDC during loud passages and will throttle back to 12VDC idle during silent parts.
- HEAVILY modified by me for "enhanced transient-signal performance" :evil:
- 110w RMS x2 channels (8ohms) in Stereo mode, 0.09% THD Main L&R
- 100w RMS x4 channels (8ohms) in Pro-Logic mode, 0.9% THD in Center & Surround channels.
- B+ to B- voltage of 130VDC in Stereo mode, 110VDC in Surround (Paltry 8200F filter caps, though I have added some more in "strategic locations")
- I have managed to pulse 10A through a 4-ohm 12" speaker (=400w peak, accidentally bottomed out the voice coil).
- Full overload and short circuit protection for dolts like me.
- I leave it almost always in stereo mode.

Speaker Cable:
- 14AWG OFC braid to the stereo pair
- 24AWG 4-cond solid telephone wire going 3 feet to the sub (it's powered--I just need a voltage signal)

Speakers:
- Cerwin Vega HT12-PWR 12", dual 3" ports, 150w RMS built in amp with level control, clipping indicator, crossover, phase switch, power switch, and wireless remote. Huge monster that weighs in at 70 lbs. Good to about 30Hz.

- 2x Optimus PRO-X44AV (clearance--sold as RCA now) shielded die-cast with 4" driver, 1" soft-dome tweeter. 50w RMS but will take more abuse than that. Good clarity and soundstage, and no noticeable cabinet resonance. I will never go back to wood or plastic speakers again! tongue.gif Downside: They absolutely require a subwoofer.


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smg
post Jun 20 2002, 12:07
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QUOTE
Originally posted by godzilla525
Time to cue up the laugh track... but before you do, note that I read the sale papers!


I'ts all a matter of preferance along with Economics.

"Unfortunately I don't have any rich audiophile relatives to get nice hand-me-down 70's amps from so..."

Forunately high quality 70's equipment is still affordable. However I must caution you that if you don't have the money, do not listen to 70's Marantz Sansui or Pioneer
You'll have to have it and you'll sell your mate to get to get it

LOL
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fewtch
post Jun 20 2002, 20:16
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Is there anyone around who still repairs 70's power amps, etc? I would think within another 5-10 years, capacitors will start drying up, pots will need replacing, flywheel tuner systems will need overhauled, etc.

There could be a lot of "hidden costs" in 70's equipment a bit down the road, unless you're an electronics expert.


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smg
post Jun 20 2002, 21:35
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QUOTE
Originally posted by fewtch
Is there anyone around who still repairs 70's power amps, etc?  I would think within another 5-10 years, capacitors will start drying up, pots will need replacing, flywheel tuner systems will need overhauled, etc.

There could be a lot of "hidden costs" in 70's equipment a bit down the road, unless you're an electronics expert.


Your still thinking of the new modern junk that is designed to break down. Yes there are places that do repairs. Any electronic shop. I collect 70's equipment along with Lp's. Have 15 various recievers and dozens of speakers. 3 reel to reels 4 turntables. over 8 thousand lp's. Rarely if ever have any problems with recievers besides an occasional squirt of contact cleaner on the pots. The crossovers on the speakers I get somethimes are bad. and they can be a pain to find. But it's all a labor of love.

BTW I'm thinking of expanding my collection to start including Amp/Preamp/Tuners Told myself along time ago I wouldn't......Oh Well
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fewtch
post Jun 24 2002, 06:29
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I just bought this tuner today... this might be a little too "retro" even for you smg (or too cheap) biggrin.gif ... who can complain for $23.00? I bought it purely for the looks, looks *great* next to digital computer equipment! (hahahaha!):



I plan to hook it to some old amplified computer speakers I'm not using, to start with smile.gif. Maybe start dabbling around again with a little AM-band DX'ing, picking up long distance stations at night with it.


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ff123
post Jun 24 2002, 07:26
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QUOTE
Originally posted by fewtch
I just bought this tuner today... this might be a little too "retro" even for you smg (or too cheap) biggrin.gif ... who can complain for .00?  I bought it purely for the looks, looks *great* next to digital computer equipment! (hahahaha!):

I plan to hook it to some old amplified computer speakers I'm not using, to start with smile.gif.  Maybe start dabbling around again with a little AM-band DX'ing, picking up long distance stations at night with it.


lol! Does it have an AFC switch or does it actually do PLL to keep the station from drifting? I see the little meter to tell you when you've got maximum signal strength.

My first FM stereo was a faceplate for a console with the electronics hanging bare off the back. I had to save up something like $25 to buy it, and still had to put it on layaway because I didn't have enough to pay for it all at once. After listening so long to my little green Panasonic ball (I don't know what they called those things), the thing sounded so good, it was like heaven.



ff123
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fewtch
post Jun 24 2002, 08:02
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QUOTE
Originally posted by ff123


lol!  Does it have an AFC switch or does it actually do PLL to keep the station from drifting?  I see the little meter to tell you when you've got maximum signal strength.

Not sure, it was another Ebay impulse buy and hasn't been shipped yet. Looks to me to be about mid 60's, maybe a little later. I liked the retro look of it, it will be an interesting contrast to the rest of the junk I got around here smile.gif. Might look better cleaned up & touched up with some paint too.

OK, maybe I could have gotten it free or even cheaper at a thrift store... but the seller deals regularly with old equipment (they have a website at www.vintagetechnology.com) and probably wouldn't sell something in crap condition.

That green ball is interesting btw, never seen one of those before.

P.S... one of these days I'm gonna have to get a tube amp or radio, just for the fuzzies of it wink.gif .


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2Bdecided
post Jun 24 2002, 14:46
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Can I suggest some real classic hi-fi? I've never heard anyone say that the 1970s were a good time for audio, so I'm bemused by the discussion in this thread!

Worth finding are:

Turntables: Garrard top-of-the-range turntables 301 or 401, with a nice SME arm. You need a good solid plinth too.

Not sure about classic cartridges or Pre-amps, because I've always had "modern" ones. I know the top Decca cartridge and arm of the period were designed with the 301 in mind.

Power Amplifiers: Quad II or Leak Stereo 20 or Radford STA25 3

Speakers: Quad ESL 57 or 63 or (on a budget) some of the older Wharfedale designs were great.


I don't have a working vintage set-up at the moment, but the ones I've heard have been magic.

I have no idea how much of this is available in the USA. I assume you have your own classic hi-fi, but it seems to be the the British stuff from this era that is collectable - many a Garrard/Quad system been purchased by hi-fi enthusiasts from Asia.

That fact that discerning people from that continent are so keen to collect British Audio equipment from the 1960s tells you all you need to know about their own audio equipment from the 1970s!

As always, there are exceptions.

Cheers,
David.

P.S. You could put a nice (though not classic or ground-breaking) vintage set-up together for under 200 with a cheaper Garrard deck, a Rogers HG-88 integrated valve amp, and some decent but long-forgotten speakers. Way more fun that all this 1970s transistor rubbish! :-)
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bryant
post Jun 24 2002, 16:54
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QUOTE
Originally posted by 2Bdecided
I have no idea how much of this is available in the USA. I assume you have your own classic hi-fi, but it seems to be the the British stuff from this era that is collectable - many a Garrard/Quad system been purchased by hi-fi enthusiasts from Asia.

That fact that discerning people from that continent are so keen to collect British Audio equipment from the 1960s tells you all you need to know about their own audio equipment from the 1970s!

The best known classic USA hifi brands are Fisher, Scott, Marantz and McIntosh; and tube equipment from the latter two brands is in just as high demand in Asia as that Euro rubbish. wink.gif

Unfortunately, except for McIntosh, these companies were bought out by Japanese firms around 1970 who used only the names to help peddle varying grades of transistor hardware made over there. Now, the names Fisher and Scott are associated with the lowest grade of consumer junk, while Marantz has always tried to stay a little more "high end". In fact, not too long ago Marantz created some beautiful reissues of some of their best tube gear from the 60s.
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