: Audiophiles post here!



I~LUV~Caddys8792
12-13-09, 11:42 AM
So a buddy of mine is a huge audiophile. At his cabin, he's got a real nice '70s vintage Marantz receiver/amplifier, and it sounds beautiful. Just so crystal clear and powerful. I don't know what else he's got but before I saw this Marantz of his I never heard of that company....apparently they're really high end...almost to the level of McIntosh.

So anyways, now I'm interested in high end audio systems. I know we've got a few audiophiles on here (Rick, Submariner, Jesda, Ian, etc etc). What do you guys have and let's see some pics!

My dad's got an old Harmon Kardon receiver in the basement somewhere, '70s vintage as well.

hardrockcamaro@mac.c
12-13-09, 12:10 PM
Denon AVC A1 Receiver linked to:

2x B&W 603 S2 Floorstanders
2x B&W 602 S2 mounted on atacama stands
1x B&W CC6 S2 Centre Channel
1x B&W ASW1000 Sub Woofer

QED Silver 25th Anniversary speaker cabling and QED Reference interconnects.

Bought is a few years ago and it still sounds great. :)

Night Wolf
12-13-09, 02:06 PM
Are you interested in buying your own stuff, or just want to see others?

If you are interested in some gear, how much do you want to spend and what do you want it to do?

I'm down to my Sansui 9090DB receiver (125wpc), Sansui AU-517 integrated amp (65wpc) as my main amp source, then the little Onkyo TX-2500MKII (35wpc) that is for a small bedroom system. I have my parents my 5.1 JVC receiver since I am not into HT anymore, and have my Sony TA-2650 integrated amp to Ian as I didn't use it anymore and wanted to thin out the collection - so I don't have anything left to give away :(.

Marantz makes good stuff, their blue lights are attractive. As with most vintage audio, the top of the line (TOTL) units usually fetch a good chunk of change, but 1 or 2 models below TOTL are a good bit cheaper for only slighty less features/power output. Entry models like my little Onkyo (which has an excellent sound) are next to nothing.

Ranger
12-13-09, 02:27 PM
I have a 70's vintage Marantz 2270 with a pair of beautiful walnut Sansui SP1000 speakers with ornate wood grills. They are huge and weigh in at 50# each. Wouldn't trade the set up. Those 70's vintage Marantz units where TOTL as well as work horses. I think they have a cult following today and are rather sought after. There is a lot of info on them if you Google them.
http://www.sansui.us/images/Speakers/SP_4Digits/SP1000_4.jpg
http://www.classic-audio.com/marantz/pics/2270.jpg

Submariner409
12-13-09, 08:29 PM
See my photo album up in the blue bar for starters............

Bryston 12B preamp (moving coil phono)
Klyne SK-5A preamp (2005 mod by Stan Klyne)
Marchand electronic crossover (100 Hz)
Conrad-Johnson electronic crossover (110 Hz)
Audio Electronic Supply 6-packs (EL-34 triode monoblock tube amps)
VAC PA-100/100 KT88 stereo tube amp
Njoe Tjoeb 4000 tube output CD player
Meridian CD player
Magnum Dynalab FT-101A tuner (upgraded)
Channel Master 4409 FM antenna and rotor
EPOS 5 monitor speakers on 24" stands (shot filled)
MartinLogan VISTA electrostatic speakers
Oracle DELPHI-III turntable (upgraded to -IV)
SME IV-iv magnesium tonearm
LYRA Helikon MC cartridge
Monster Cable (Nakatsuka) MC2000 cartridge
Monster Cable (Nakatsuka MC 1000-II cartridge
All sorts of Kimber speaker cable and interconnect
My own hand-braided interconnect with Vampire RCA plugs
Nitty Gritty 1.5 FI record cleaning machine
Hundreds of old, new, and New Old Stock vacuum tubes
6 Hickok tube testers from the 50's and 60's
An EICO kit tube tester
4,300 LP's
220 CD's
Bunches of my recordings on cassette tape
More time and money invested than I care to tabulate, but the bottom reference line is the music: acoustic, unamplified in a natural setting. Automobile "stereo" is far removed from natural music - it is mere noise. I like the Bose system in the STS, but it is noise or sonic wallpaper, not music.

(Oh...... 2 Zenith vacuum tube table radios from the early 50's - mine and Dad's. They both work)

Ranger, About the same time you bought the Sansui SP-1000's (good ol' carved grilles) I was running the NATO AFSOUTH Audio Club in Naples. One of our hottest speaker lines was Sansui, both the Sp-1000 and the upscale (?) SP-2000. Those darn grilles were held in by 4 tiny Philips screws in the grille corners.

Florian
12-13-09, 08:50 PM
6 Hickok tube testers from the 50's and 60's



I used to work at Hickok.....:yup:
BTW, Im Denon for components and PSB for speakers.


F

Submariner409
12-13-09, 09:29 PM
F, Just like old Westinghouse or Simpson, the various handmade Hickok meters were true works of art. I have a mint 539C and a decent 539B tester. Both work as designed over 60 years ago. (Just try and find a #83 mercury-filled rectifier tube nowadays :cool:)

Ranger
12-13-09, 09:42 PM
Ranger, About the same time you bought the Sansui SP-1000's (good ol' carved grilles) I was running the NATO AFSOUTH Audio Club in Naples. One of our hottest speaker lines was Sansui, both the Sp-1000 and the upscale (?) SP-2000. Those darn grilles were held in by 4 tiny Philips screws in the grille corners.
Sub, they actually came from a U.S. Navy PX in Japan and where brought back aboard the USS Ranger. Being Infantry, I did not have that opportunity while in Viet Nam, but my buddy picked them up for me when they stopped in Japan on their return cruise .

Caddyshack100
12-13-09, 09:48 PM
Technics SUV6X Amp, Teac V900X with DBX ,Cassette, Nakamichi Dragon, with pop out auto reverse, Bose 901's, Technics SLP 10 Linear Tracking Turntable with MM cartridge. Its too bad that Japan stopped making Audio, now its all outsourced to Malaysia and others, cheap plastic non lasting quality.

the recluse
12-13-09, 09:55 PM
... the bottom reference line is the music: acoustic, unamplified in a natural setting. Automobile "stereo" is far removed from natural music - it is mere noise. I like the Bose system in the STS, but it is noise or sonic wallpaper, not music.

Agreed. I never have liked the Bose systems, both in the car and in the house, overrated name IMHO.

Over the years I've liked Harmon Kardon and Onkyo for house audio, but have always tried my darnedest to get audio perfection in a vehicle. I would take the time to handcraft the sound field with the proper speakers, amps, and crossovers, then sit for hours with a frequency generator tuning and re-tuning. No, you don't get proper reflection and transmission coefficients in a vehicle, but half the fun is getting as close as possible...

Submariner409
12-13-09, 10:21 PM
Caddyshack, the Nakamichi Dragon was one heck of a cassette deck. They went all-out to make it every bit the equal of a good reel-to-reel deck. I have (and use) a Harman-Kardon 491 deck that serves very well. Before that I had a ReVox A99 reel deck. Took 10.5" reels of Scotch (3M) #203 tape.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
12-13-09, 11:50 PM
Cool to see what everyone uses. I have no audio setup, and no stereo anymore. All I've got is an iPod sound dock I got last christmas.

I want a nice receiver, nice speakers in a size that's not overly large or hard to move. I have a lot of good CD's and would like a sound system fitting for them. After hearing "Pet Sounds" on my friend's Marantz system it's hard to listen to anything else.

What could I expect to spend on a good used '70s era Marantz or Mcintosh receiver? Sansui a pretty solid brand too? How about Nakamichi? Harmon Kardon?

Night Wolf
12-14-09, 12:06 AM
Cool to see what everyone uses. I have no audio setup, and no stereo anymore. All I've got is an iPod sound dock I got last christmas.

I want a nice receiver, nice speakers in a size that's not overly large or hard to move. I have a lot of good CD's and would like a sound system fitting for them. After hearing "Pet Sounds" on my friend's Marantz system it's hard to listen to anything else.

What could I expect to spend on a good used '70s era Marantz or Mcintosh receiver? Sansui a pretty solid brand too? How about Nakamichi? Harmon Kardon?

Keep in mind, where brand are today really don't have a relation to where they were in the 70's.

Good luck affording a Mcintosh. Nakamichi and HK weren't well known for their reveicers either. Marantz, it depends, thats why I was asking what you want to do with it and how much you want to spend. Their upper models and TOTL will be expensive, the lower-mid level units will be a very good value for the price.

Sansui is excellent, along with Pioneer and Kenwood. All of the TOTL models, 9090DB, SX-1280 (well actually the SX-1980 beast) and KR-9600 respectively will bring the highest prices, but you can go a few models lower, save alot of money and still get an excellent receiver. The Pioneer SX-1080 is a good example of that, which is very good.

Keep in mind this solid state gear is now atleast 30 years old, capacitors dry out over time - especially if it has been in storage for a while. They will not sound as good as they did. The only fix is to have it restored by someone that works with electronics - that is recap the whole thing and retrim the adjustments. Sometimes it can cost as much as the unit itself, but is the only way to bring it back to sounding like it once did. Even then, one of these unrestored beasts will still sound overall pretty good.

As for speakers, some vintage speakers were very good - others not so much. It may be a better idea to get newer speakers. I would highly, highly reccomend JBL S38's, they are no longer made so scan Craigslist and ebay. They will just about be the best performing speaker for the price you'll find. They produce enough bass that you don't need a sub either. Even tho they were sold at Best Buy when new, they were actually reviewed in Stereophile -

http://www.stereophile.com/standloudspeakers/365/

As for sources, any cd player will hook up to it, and for the ipod you can go as simple as an RCA-stereo mini cable Y-adapter, to a fancy stand alone ipod dock that hooks up and has a remote etc....

You can piece together a neat little system for $200 or $1,000. The prices vary so much depending on what you get, you're better off deciding how much you want to spend overall, then go from there.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
12-14-09, 12:10 AM
Hmmmm....$200-$1000....maybe just a real nice set of headphones would be ideal. :lol:

Where would I go about price shopping these things? Mcintosh sounds unreasonable, but a Sansui or Marantz would be nice. Nothing against Pioneer or Kenwood, they make good stuff, but Sansui/Marantz is rarer and therefore cooler (IMO).

Is there a good website to spend some serious time reading up on this stuff? Wikipedia is OK but I'd like something more oriented in this field.

Night Wolf
12-14-09, 12:16 AM
lol..... well, how much do you want to spend?

I got my little 35wpc Onkyo at a thrift store for like $30 several years ago. Get a decent pair of used speakers for $70 and that would be a decent $100 system.

For headphones, I would highly reccomend the Grado SR-60's (~$60), just read the reviews! Sometimes I listen to mine just because they sound good and headphones offer a different type of sound enjoyment. I also have a dedicated headphone amp my friend built me.

Night Wolf
12-14-09, 12:30 AM
Hmmmm....$200-$1000....maybe just a real nice set of headphones would be ideal. :lol:

Where would I go about price shopping these things? Mcintosh sounds unreasonable, but a Sansui or Marantz would be nice. Nothing against Pioneer or Kenwood, they make good stuff, but Sansui/Marantz is rarer and therefore cooler (IMO).

Is there a good website to spend some serious time reading up on this stuff? Wikipedia is OK but I'd like something more oriented in this field.

ebay is your main friend, along with craigslist.

Thats what i was saying about the brands, todays brands have nothing to do with the vintage gear. Just look at what Sansui is today :( 70's Pioneer and Kenwood were high quality units, it wasn't until the 80's when there was a large shift from lower-production high quality gear to mass market "black plastic" that those once premium brands started getting the rep they now have.

Plus, it sounds like you don't want to spend alot of money, so they would offer you a better deal. I am personally fond of vintage Sansui, but the others made a very good unit too. I have had high end Kenwood in the past as well as entry level Sony and also the little Onkyo. If you really like Sansui tho, check out the 8080DB, it was 2nd from TOTL, and while the 9090DB brings top dollar, the 8080DB, or even just the 8080 usually offers a very good deal. A receiver will have an amp, preamp and tuner built in, and integrated amp is just an amp and preamp, requiring a seperate tuner if you want to pick up AM/FM broadcasts.

As for reading up, there are plenty of audio/vintage audio forums out there to research stuff.

mmmmmm vintage Sansui....

http://i43.photobucket.com/albums/e363/InoventionsEast/audio1/12-19-07/12-19-07187.jpg

I gotta get better/updated pics of the gear sometime.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
12-14-09, 12:32 AM
I can get a good 2200 series Marantz for less than $250 on craigslist. I like how the Marantz's look and feel....that gyro-touch tuner was pretty cool. :)

Night Wolf
12-14-09, 12:36 AM
There ya go! I got my S38's in great condition used for ~$100 ($600 new), search for some - you wont be disapointed!

If you want to read straight up user reviews, check out audioreview.com

ejguillot
12-14-09, 12:50 AM
My stereo hardware setup is...

*Office/Mancave*
Receiver: Pioneer SX-1080 (120w/ch @ 8ohms, 150w/ch @ 4 ohms). 2 removed from Pioneer's TOTL receiver, it will put out its rated output all day long! I refurbed this one: cleaned it out, fixed the broken power supply board, and replaced all the electrolytic capacitors with new Panasonic FC (low ESR) caps.
Speakers: Infinity RSb speakers. 10" polypropylene woofer, 5" midrange, and EMIT planar ribbon tweeter. You don't need a subwoofer with these! 150w max RMS continuous input, these are a good match for the SX-1080. Speaker cables are 12 gauge low voltage wire (used for outdoor lighting) from Home Depot, tinned ends.
Sources: Thorens TD-165 turntable (with Grado Black cart), iMac 20" (clean audio source, holds lots of high bitrate (at least 256kbps VBR) mp3's and lossless audio files.

*Bedroom*
Receiver: Marantz 2230 (30w/ch claimed, 38w/ch actual). A really sweet sounding unit, this one has lots of fans for good reason. Refurbed as well, have to investigate why FM stereo doesn't work.
Speakers: Pioneer CS-R500, good sounding 3 way speakers. I got them with blown horn tweeters, got new ones from Parts Express that matched the specs.
Sources: 4th gen 40GB iPod in dock (clean line out used), Phillips DVD/CD player

*Living Room/Home Theater*
Receiver: Marantz TA-165. A mid 80's unit, this receiver is rated at 165w/ch and can actually deliver it. Looks like BPC (black plastic crap) on the outside, beefy transformer and heatsinks inside.
Speakers: Another pair of Infinity RSb's.
Sources: Audio feed from cable box, Pioneer CLD-703 LD/CD player (TOTL US market laserdisc player at the time for Pioneer, not counting Elite. Great CD player).

*Other equipment in storage, awaiting repair/refurb*
Marantz 2275 receiver (the replacement for Ranger's 2270). Working, could use a recap.
Marantz 4400 receiver (TOTL 4 channel reciever). Needs work, starting with a complete recap and rebuilding the base that holds the display light bulbs.
Pioneer CT-F950, Teac V-95RX tape decks (not working)
DCM bookshelf speakers (they work, just need to figure out where to use them)

I'll pay attention to my audio stuff more once I get my STS fixed (bad headgaskets, thread in Seville forum).

I~LUV~Caddys8792
12-14-09, 12:51 AM
Yeah I really like the Marantz's...especially how they were built by a domestic company in Japan. Saul Marantz founded the company in New York in 1952. I really like fine equipment of any sort, especially when it's designed by Americans in America. :)

Mcintosh is great too, but holy god for expensive. I actually think the Marantz's look better...that cool blue lighting... :drool:

ga_etc
12-14-09, 02:09 AM
I have an '80s model Pioneer VSX-3600 Tuner and a set of Marantz CS-65 speakers that are from '75 I believe. I don't know what quality this equipment is but they still sound good and work well. Maybe someone can give me some insight on the quality level of my components.

Submariner409
12-14-09, 11:29 AM
FWIW, While the old Sansui, Teac, Nak, Marantz, etc. early transistor stuff is collectible, it suffers from aging electrolytic power supply and film coupling capacitor failures. Older speakers are almost universally plagued by rotting foam speaker surrounds, which are a bitch to correctly replace (although there are kits to do the job), and crossover electrolytic caps drying out. Vacuum tube gear is sonically superior to transistors, but it takes dedication, money, and fanatic maintenance to keep it all up and running. Tube gear is a wonderful hobby, but it's NOT for the "turn it on and listen" audio buff, and good tube gear is NOT inexpensive, even though there's a ton of it being made, worldwide, as I type.

Better to go to www.audioadvisor.com and look at a midrange-price Cambridge, NAD, or other receiver or integrated amp. Starting with a modest modern receiver, CD deck, small monitors and the grado SR-60's you can build a system that sonically outperforms ANY of the earlier receiver dinosaurs. Not as cool looking, but sonically superior - by "superior" I do not mean "impressive": I mean accurate.

For reference, take your favorite CD's and go to a high end audio salon (NOT Japanese modern transistor gear) and listen to a modest $25,000 system for a while. ("Modest ???" - I hate to tell you, but it's easy to spend twice that on just a pair of MartinLogan Statement electrostatic speakers.)

Florian
12-14-09, 12:40 PM
25K is low end for quality stereo goodies....I wanted to go down that road, but found that it is a never ending tail-chasing proposition, kinda like new computers.


F

Submariner409
12-14-09, 06:51 PM
............or maintaining Cadillacs :alchi:


F, The ticket to the High End is NOT the audio salon. Most wannabe "audiophiles" are so paranoid over having the "most wonderful" gear that they unload some gorgeous sounding stuff for pennies on the dollar. Snoop into some audio forums that cater to people with more money than brains; you'll need to be patient, but the deals are there.

As an example, in my post of a list of my gear, there's a set of Audio Electronics Supply (Cary) Six-Pacs, a pair of 50 watt monoblock tube amps that list for $2,500, no discounts. I picked up a pair of those, one year old, for $650 shipped with remaining warranty and a set of 12 matched output tube spares ($325). That's 80% off ! The guy wanted a new conrad-johnson amp. (lower case is correct.)

Eric Kahn
12-14-09, 07:57 PM
I use (not set up in new house yet) a Harman Kardon receiver, klipsch chorus II mains klipsch KLF 7 center and a pair of small Klipsch monitors for rears, also have a 15" 250 watt self powered sub woofer from parts express, an old technics turntable that needs a carttridge, sony cd player. an optimus (radio shack) and a tascam stereo master cassette decks

one of these days I will get it all set up again, just like one of these days I will get the old citation II power amp restored so I can use it

MacMuse
12-14-09, 09:12 PM
Back in my college frat days, I ended up in the room that controlled the house speakers...

http://www.hifiatubes.com/boutique/images_produits/klipsch_scala_103dB_hifiatubes_1.jpg

A pair of these built into the wall of our main 'party' room and my roommate's Onkyo amplifier kept the dancers happy late into the night. My favorite memory (that survives those days) is of a drunk sophomore coming back just as the night's party ended and demanding I play some Rush. OK, he was pretty wasted and we quickly agreed to play it to keep him from losing his cool.

He sat 10 feet in front of the speakers and began to 'play' along with Rush's famous drummer. I've seen enough drummers to realize he was playing a full kit and hitting the rhythms perfectly on every tune. Quite astonishing, especially since he could barely stand up.

V-Eight
12-15-09, 05:58 PM
^ Which fraternity?

MacMuse
12-15-09, 08:33 PM
^ Which fraternity?

oh, one at a college. somewhere. That would fall into my 'TMI' doctrine. (too much info).

I believe they finally pulled them out of the wall. Probably didn't realize what they had on their hands, or maybe they did$$.

V-Eight
12-15-09, 08:47 PM
Ah, was just wondering because I'm currently pledging one. But no worries.

Jesda
12-16-09, 03:21 AM
I still have my Technics amp and turntable setup with Teac EQ, but I have some AMAZING JBL XPL140 speakers from the 90s that I bought from Ian. They're simply incredible.

http://www.q45.org/cpg/albums/wpw-20091216/normal_100_5533.jpg

Caddyshack100
12-17-09, 08:42 PM
Technics and Teac were probably one of the better higher end audio companies back in the 80's and 90s, before they left for foreign shores, Teac especially fell hard, and SUB you are right, the Nakamichi Dragon was one hell of a cassette deck, I even paid a hell of a price for it, 2700 dollars C which back then would be about 5000 of todays dollars. I was going to buy a Bang and Olfusen, which was a unit which was very strange looking, it was all flat, and looked and shaped liked a keyboard, very pricey. Hitachi came out with a knockoff for it, and it was not bad either.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
12-17-09, 08:54 PM
My dad had a Teac dual cassette player/recorder.

bjv
12-17-09, 10:55 PM
Back when I was in college a good stereo was the thing to have. We didn't have computers and ipods and cellphones, and most places had a poor selection of TV channels and programming. There were stereo stores on every corner, like we have Starbucks now.

I saved up and bought a system with a Pioneer receiver, I don't remember which turntable, and JBL speakers. My speakers developed a problem and I traded them at the original store for Audico speakers. Later in college I bought a TEAC cassette deck so I could record my own cassettes. After college I visited some stereo stores in my new hometown and ended up buying a Hitachi cassette deck and Hitachi turntable, and a pair of Infiniti bookshelf speakers to put in the other end of my house. Fairly recently I gave away the big Audico speakers. Both of my old cassette decks had problems so I bought a new consumer Pioneer cassette deck and CD changer. I ended up putting the turntable in the attic. My wife made me put the stereo in the back bedroom but it doesn't matter, I ended up spending more time watching TV and less time listening to music. I even have an ipod now for when I really want to listen to music.

Stingroo
12-17-09, 11:00 PM
Yeah, now in college nobody has anything on the floor I live in. LOL It's kind of weird. Our dorm is the hangout spot, because of a 30 inch TV and Netflix subscription. Now all I want is a surround sound system and I'd be happier than a pig in shit.

CadillacCastle
12-18-09, 04:25 AM
I bought a new Sansui G5700 in 1979 with a pair of AR7 speakers. It was a good year I had just bought a new Harley Low Rider for $5500.00. The receiver was $400.00 and the AR7 speakers were $350.00 each. I lost the Sansui in a house fire with a Curtis Mathis $1300 TV. The TV had a nice looking wood cabinet and it was good to put pictures and things on. The Sansui had a nice looking wood cabinet, Mahogony I think. I thought I could never replace it until I got my first computer in 2001. I found a mint Sansui G5700 on ebay in the box for $365.00. I think it was brought back by a serviceman and barely used. I really like the wood cabinet and digital numbers of the radio station along with the big speed dial tuners. It is a 400 watt but I think the speakers are supposed to be 60 watts each. I bought it and have not used it much because I never bought good speakers, I have mostly used it with headphones and love the DC sound. I think the DC sound is what makes it sound the best. The Kenwood speakers have 12" woofers with the foam gone. I don't know if I should get new woofers or complete speakers. I had them taped up with duct tape once and it still has the glue on them. This thread has made me want to get the speakers fixed or replaced. I think Sansui was in their prime because of the digital and numeral station numbers along with the wood cabinet. In the next few years they went to metal cabinets. I have 2 immitation alligator print 8-track boxes full of the best Rock and Roll music of the 70s. The foam on the pads has rotted on some of them, some tapes had copper springs with pads and some tapes used foam. If you use a tape with rotted foam the tape player will eat the tape. I saw on ebay someone selling foam repair kits. I don't even have a 8-track player anymore I just keep the tapes for memories. I did like the 8-tracks because they never needed turned over like the first cassette players. Does anyone remember the 4-tracks? LOL I remember when so many people had CB radios they had to go from 23 channels to 40 channels. It was like a phone party line, no secrets there. I had the coolest Craig 40 channel CB radio with a whip. A friend put a linear on his CB and could talk for 10 miles. The internet has even gave me the chance to replace my 1976 Bulova LED round face watch like I had iin 1976 along with 3 extras. It goes along with the digital speedometer in my 1998 Deville.

Caddyshack100
12-18-09, 11:00 AM
Ahh your making me wish for those times again from the late 70's and 80's, I remember buying one of the first CD players on the market, the SLP3 by Technics, it was very distinctive as it had a prism above the CD door and it looked like the disc spining around vertically. Does anybody remember what their first CD was? Mine was Agent Provacateur by Foreigner, Downtown Toronto had a big record store that only just recently closed called Sam the Record Man, they just sold Records and Cassettes, of course they had to go into Cd's.. They set aside a portion of their store and when they started selling they only had 12 Cds for sale, 10 classical and two rock and roll and one was Foreigner and the other was Robert Plant Principles of the Moment. If you looked at those CD's they were only made in a factory in Germany. It did not take long for CD's to flourish though and the first million seller was Dire Straits. Brothers in Arms. Great CD.

MacMuse
12-18-09, 11:12 AM
>> Dire Straits. Brothers in Arms

Yeah, that was the first CD I heard in the summer of 85. Astonishing detail.

Really shows how the recording industry has (d)evolved too. Play that original CD back to back with any current rock CD and levels are shocking. Dire Straits' engineers reveled in showing the dynamic range possible in a CD, while today's engineers are required by marketing "genuises" to compress the snot out of the music and keep the meters pegged through the whole song. yuck.

Submariner409
12-18-09, 11:27 AM
For a "then and now" shock, get to www.musicdirect.com and find the anniversary CD of "Brothers in Arms", "On Every Street", or "Love Over Gold". (or any of the most recent Dire Straits remasters.)

Try Alan Parsons "Eye In The Sky", "Turn Of A Friendly Card", or "Eve" or their seminal Edgar Allen Poe tribute "Tales Of Mystery and Imagination".

Any of these will test a system's resolution and dynamics to the fullest. Preferably on an English or Japanese CD, NOT Warner Brothers or some American knockoff.

"Eye In The Sky" was recorded using the multiple microphone/phase Ambisonics system. A high resolution stereo setup will allow you to hear sound from the sides and toward the rear of your room. Your speakers should be 2/3 distance apart of the distance of your head to the speakers, and the speakers should be elevated 12" or so off the floor, toed in slightly toward your line of sight. The height should put the midrange/tweeters at your listening position ear level. A singer or speaker's voice should appear midway between the speakers when you have the inaging (height/toe-in) set correctly. Move the speakers away from walls or objects which cause a mid-bass or midrange hump.

Night Wolf
12-18-09, 04:12 PM
I used to have a Sansui G-7700. That was the "big knobs" Sansui line. I liked the dual analog/digital tuner, LED power meter and neat glowing faceplate glass with the Sansui logo and "PURE POWER" writing.

Submariner409
12-18-09, 04:47 PM
If you like "neat, glowing ..... glass", go back and search out some old McIntosh gear. That incandescent blue edge lighting was a trademark.........

Night Wolf
12-18-09, 04:52 PM
Oh, I'm aware of the McIntosh gear.... I'm also aware of the prices they fetch :)

I'm not into the audio stuff like I used to be. I still enjoy it, but I no longer buy/sell often. I just gave away what I no longer wanted and keep/enjoy the rest.

Caddyshack100
12-18-09, 06:00 PM
Thats an interesting fact about the Alan Parsons Project that I did not know, in fact I went back to all my Alan Parsons CD's and looked at where they were made, CINRAM, which was a Canadian CD manufacturer did them. Its no surprise that the 'Eye in the Sky' was engineered that way, after all anybody who worked on Pink FLoyd 'Dark Side of the Moon' the way Alan did deserves the kudos. Their first CD did not get released in Canada until about 1990, I think Copyright issues held it up, but it was worth waiting for. 'Tales of Mystery and Imagination' was a great album, Orson Welles doing the narration was bang on. APP was at their best when Eric Woolfson was doing the singing.

Submariner409
12-18-09, 06:33 PM
Ooooooppppppsss!! Double clutch.......

Submariner409
12-18-09, 06:37 PM
Lenny Zakatek and Chris Rainbow were no slouches, BUT you're right, they needed the right arrangement because neither was as polished as Woolfson.

Back a few years ago, when The Baltimore Stallions were part of the CFL they used an arrangement of the intro to "Eye In The Sky" along with fireworks explosions to introduce the team at home games. Truly awesome in every sense of the word........

Dig out "EVE", turn off the lights and get into "If I Could Change Your Mind".

"Brothers In Arms"..........Anyone ever heard the crickets come from beside and behind you in "Ride Across The River" ?? (Not 4-channel = stereo.)

I~LUV~Caddys8792
12-18-09, 08:06 PM
For a "then and now" shock, get to www.musicdirect.com and find the anniversary CD of Brothers in Arms","On Every Street", or "Love Over Gold".]

I actually just bought Love Over Gold last night on iTunes. Impressive CD lyrically, dynamically awesome. Telegraph Road is an AMAZING piece of music, and probably Dire Straits' best song. 14.5 minutes of just sheer awesome music. Industrial Disease is a great song as well, kinda funny and bouncy, but it's very tongue in cheek and clever. Private Investigations is haunting and poignant. Love Over Gold has yet to really catch on with me, and It Never Rains is a good song as well.

If I have time tomorrow afternoon, I'm gonna run up to Minneapolis and pick up a set of Grado SR60i's. Apparently they're the best headphones in the world for less than $100.00. If I have all this great music, I might as well have a great set of headphones to enjoy them with. :)

I still want a Marantz 2200 series receiver, but I'd rather wait until I have my own place with more space to set up a full system.

Submariner409
12-18-09, 09:05 PM
You will NOT be disappointed with the Grados. Give them a few hours to limber up.......

Night Wolf
12-18-09, 09:34 PM
If I have time tomorrow afternoon, I'm gonna run up to Minneapolis and pick up a set of Grado SR60i's. Apparently they're the best headphones in the world for less than $100.00. If I have all this great music, I might as well have a great set of headphones to enjoy them with. :)


I've reccomended them before, and I still do!

I've got the 60's. I have a dedicated headphone amp, but the nice thing about the 60's over thier higher end models is that they sound very good when powered from a portable device, whereas the higher end models really need a dedicated headphone amp.

My friend from Hawaii came over in '05 (same guy that gave me the refurbed Sansui AU-517). He has SR-125's, and we spent some time comparing. When powered from a small portable device, my SR-60's sounded the exact same in many cases, and depending on the device, actually sounded better. Once hooked to a headphone amp, the 125's really shined tho, but for general headphone use, the 60's are flippin amazing. The 60i's are said to have a slightly improved driver.

I have had mine for 5 years or so now, still look new. Everytime I use them I think to myself how in the overall world of spending money on anything, this was the best $60 or whatever they were that I have spent on something.

Bad thing about the Grados, they are open-air headphones, which means everyone in the room gets to listen to what you are listening to. Also, they are not designed for any sort of physical activity, as there is no way for them to stay secured to your head well. If they are still using the same solid (non hole in center) comfortable pads as my 60's, then the quarter trick actually makes a noticeable difference in sound. Grado's are also very picky when it comes to exact fitting.

Really tho, these things are the best thing besides spending a good chunk of change on a fancy system. You'll hear things you've never heard before in your music, headphones offer a different type of listening experience too, I find myself listening to them just for the heck of it sometimes.

Edit*

I just pulled them out, along with my headphone amp for the pic. I haven't listened to them in a while and just hooked them to the latop - they never fail to amaze me!

My friend made the amp from a single block of wood. It runs off 2 9v batteries. He knows I like blue LED's, so that was used as the power button. The power button was from an old Sansui turn table IIRC and the knob from an old Sansui receiver. It has a nice 1/4" locking headphone jack and gold plated RCA inputs.

Oh, and by their design, they are pretty power hungry compared to in-ear types. They have an 8' cord, which I find to be more of a pain, but ah well.

http://i43.photobucket.com/albums/e363/InoventionsEast/audio1/misc/IMG_0001.jpg

http://i43.photobucket.com/albums/e363/InoventionsEast/audio1/misc/IMG_0002.jpg

Edit 2* I'm listening to Basshunter - All I ever wanted. Darn this song was practically made for these things!

I~LUV~Caddys8792
12-19-09, 04:22 PM
I got my Grados! SR60I's. :)

Night Wolf
12-19-09, 11:52 PM
:cool2:

If you are disapointed in them, I'll say you are crazy, and your opinion won't matter at that point ;)

I~LUV~Caddys8792
12-20-09, 01:08 AM
No arguments here! These are amazing! Best usage of my christmas bonus I could think of!

Night Wolf
12-20-09, 01:32 AM
Do the pads look like mine? If so, get an exacto knife and do the quarter trick :)

Jesda
12-20-09, 01:50 AM
Welcome to the grado universe

concorso
12-22-09, 09:44 PM
CAn any of you guys comment on tube amplifiers? Ive heard an extremely expensive tube amp that sounded magical. And I was told they all have a similar warm sound. Where could I read up on tube amps, or where could I purchase? What are typical brands?

The owner of the amp I listened to suggested that Unison Research make good affordbale tube amps? I think it was Unison, anyhow...


If it matters, the system im interested in tweeking consists of a set of Sonus Faber Cremona Auditors with a Bryston pre/power combo and QED cables.

I~LUV~Caddys8792
12-22-09, 09:46 PM
Mcintosh still makes tube amps. They had one for sale at the shop I bought my headphones from and the sales rep said it weighed about 200 lbs! :eek:

Speedingpenguin
12-22-09, 11:37 PM
Damn you all for making me want to spend $$$ on a new stereo system!
ahhhh!
Motivation to make some MONEY though!

I've got a decent set of speakers hooked up to my PC but I know that this is nothing compared to a good stereo set up. Now I'll have my eyes open for any good deals, and I'm gonna wind up with a room full of speakers and receivers and whatnot... All because of YOU!!Grrrrr

:-P

Seriously though I've been wanting to start putting together a nice system for my bedroom, I love just sitting back and listening to "The Wall", "Who Made Who", "Physical Graffiti", etc., and I can only imagine how much nicer it would be with a somewhat decent setup.

Soon enough though :-)

Submariner409
12-23-09, 02:55 PM
concorso, Just as in Cadillacs, tube rollers have their prejudices and flaming put-downs. There are now more tube amp manufacturers, world-wide, than there were in the 50's. Just as in test-driving a car, let your ears be the final test. Get to a high-end salon and listen. NOBODY in their right mind will tell you that Audio Electronic Supply (Cary, NC) is better than VAC (Florida) or McIntosh (Binghamton, NY) or any of the other 30 - 40 manufacturers.

Get into Audio Asylum, tube amps and preamps; but be ready to interact with people who make all of us in CF look politically correct to a fault!

Take this advice from someone who has been in the tube audio business a LONG time: Your speakers are the window to your sound system. One third to one half of your entire audio budget should be invested in a pair of stereo speakers. Most surround-sound is still gee-whiz-wow theatrics: a good stereo system is still the body and soul of the music. If you have $15,000 - $25,000 to put into a modest system, your speakers will start at about $5,000 a pair.

(Bryston Canada makes some damned fine equipment - one of my reference preamps is a Bryston 12B, upgraded by Bryston/Vermont a couple of years ago.)

hardrockcamaro@mac.c
12-23-09, 04:59 PM
I was told that the most expensive part of the system should be the source, followed by the amp, followed by the speakers.

Whereas many people seem to think the speakers are most important as they are the obvious part of sound production, but their quality is dependent on the signal they are given, and so on up the chain...

Night Wolf
12-23-09, 11:13 PM
I was told that the most expensive part of the system should be the source, followed by the amp, followed by the speakers.

Whereas many people seem to think the speakers are most important as they are the obvious part of sound production, but their quality is dependent on the signal they are given, and so on up the chain...

Speakers are the single most important component in an audio system. Even then, they play about 50% of the role, with room acoustics and speaker placement playing the other 50%, which make up the total "speaker" package. Next important beyond speakers would be amp source, then your input sources, cd player, turn table etc...

CadillacCastle
12-24-09, 04:55 AM
Does anyone have any advice on using a a power conditioner for HD TVs? I have been looking at a Monster Power EP 3650
Empowered PowerCenter™ with IR flashers for protectiom my new LED TV and surround system, Dell laptop power supply and wireless modem and Sansui receiver. I have home insurance with a 600.00 deductible to cover power surges but I don't think it covers brown outs. I am thinking it would be a cheaper cost to buy a power conditioner. If anyone uses a power conditioner for their HD TV please give me your advice. thanks Jeff

CadillacCastle
12-24-09, 07:27 AM
I have a set of Kenwood LS408-B 20 watt to 160 watt 3 way home stereo speakers in a walnut verneer box for my Sansui G5700 receiver and the 12" woofers need replaced because the foam is rotted. Are the new 12" woofers made today still using foam or do they use an improved material? My speakers are old and I want to repair them if feasible. I want to ask the experts out here if I should buy new 12" woofers or should I buy complete new speakers. I think my Sansui only puts out 60 watts per channel. And for the best place for quality speakers and prices is appreciated. I have to get some good headphones also. There have been some very good deals on receivers on ebay this week for Sansui and Marantz. thanks Jeff

CadillacCastle
12-24-09, 08:22 AM
My electricity just had another brown out and I had one 12 hours ago. I am afraid of the brown and black outs damaging my new TV and laptop. My Dell laptop I think is fully covered but my home insurance has a 600.00 deductable. I am ready to spend the money to have my equipment protected from electrical spikes. I just had to call the phone company to reconfigure my 2 wire router modem. I think I need to find the best power conditioner with a battery back up and surge protector and keep my home insurance and that is all I can do.

ejguillot
12-24-09, 02:48 PM
For the money that you spend on the "Monster Power EP 3650" power conditioner, spend a little more and get an APC Smart-UPS:

http://www.apc.com/products/family/index.cfm?id=165#anchor1

Does everything that the Monster unit (in my opinion, if it's sold by Monster it's overpriced) does, plus battery backup so power interruptions are no longer a concern.

And they're tough: I had one of these protect my computer from a lightning strike on the house TWICE.

Edit: Don't confuse this with the cheap "Back-UPS" stuff you get at local stores. That's cheap consumer/home office grade stuff.

The Smart-UPS is corporate/enterprise grade (built to a much higher standard), and comes with a LIFETIME $150,000 equipment protection policy.

Smart-UPS units also come in rackmount options, if that fits your setup better.

Night Wolf
12-24-09, 07:36 PM
I have a set of Kenwood LS408-B 20 watt to 160 watt 3 way home stereo speakers in a walnut verneer box for my Sansui G5700 receiver and the 12" woofers need replaced because the foam is rotted. Are the new 12" woofers made today still using foam or do they use an improved material? My speakers are old and I want to repair them if feasible. I want to ask the experts out here if I should buy new 12" woofers or should I buy complete new speakers. I think my Sansui only puts out 60 watts per channel. And for the best place for quality speakers and prices is appreciated. I have to get some good headphones also. There have been some very good deals on receivers on ebay this week for Sansui and Marantz. thanks Jeff

No need to buy new speakers, or new woofers. Just have yours re-surrounded, or reconed at the worst. Look for a place that does work on audio equipment. I had to take one of the 12" woofers from my L100 to get repaired when a spider wire broke.

CadillacCastle
12-27-09, 11:18 PM
thanks ej, I am looking at the APC brand trying to pick out the size. It has 540 Joules of protectio.And a Belkin [/B13-Outlet / 7114 Joules / PureAV Home Theater Power Console PF60. I want to know how many joules I need to protect a 46 LED TV, surround sound, dishnetwork and blu ray. And I plan to add a FTA receiver. I like the APC because someone who runs a Hospital recommended them and now you too ej. But the Belkin with no battery back up it has a lot more joules of protection. 56 joules compared to 7114 joules. NIGHTWOLF, I will take the speakers to a larger city that does speaker repair to get a price and see if it is cost effective. I was thinking it might be cheaper to buy new speakers but it will be ideal to have the exact speakers for the Kenwood cabinet. The speakers are rated at 20 - 120 watts and my Sansui only puts out 60 watts per speaker. I won't be cracking it up as much as I used to.

CadillacCastle
12-27-09, 11:36 PM
Does anyone here use a FTA receiver? Those are the ones that you buy on ebay and there is no monthly subscrption fee. FTA is free to air. I would like to know how many channels are English. I know a lot of the FTA stations are in a foreign language. FTA Is popular with people that move here from a different country and want to watch tv from their country. I only know English. Are there enough English channels to make it worth buying, the receivers are cheap 100 and up.

ejguillot
12-28-09, 05:18 PM
CadillacCastle,

I personally take the joule ratings of most surge suppresors with a large grain of salt. The lightning strike that the APC unit protected my computer from took out a TV that had a new surge strip on it, and a couple of other household applicances.

I tend to look at the vendor's willingness to put their money where their mouth is, and APC does that to the tune of $150,000. Does the Belkin strip offer an equivalent protection plan?

Also, I know for a fact that the voltage waveform that the Smart-UPS puts out when on batteries is a true sine wave (put a scope on it). Lesser UPS units either put a stepped sine, or a square wave (which is really hard for power supplies to deal with). Something else to think about.

hyperboimmv
01-27-10, 11:37 PM
Someone should try this and report back: Cheap tube amp! (http://gizmodo.com/5440901/229-vacuum-tube-amplifier-wows-audiophiles)

Submariner409
01-28-10, 09:48 AM
With an efficient pair of speakers (>90 dB/w/m) and a great passive preamp or switchbox for sources, I'll bet the thing is pure magic on string quartet and acoustic guitar or female voice.

Harvey Rosenberg (RIP)(New York Audio Lab) used to make a pair of 8 watt monoblocks which used 6BQ5/EL84 output tubes. They would drive a monstrous pair of Klipschorns to incredible levels while sounding as if there was no equipment between you and the performer standing 10 feet in front of you.

Available power output does not always equate to better sound. "Feel The Bass" is not music; it is sheer noise for noise' sake.

Aron9000
07-01-10, 02:21 PM
Back from the dead!!!!

Anyways, I'm looking at finally buying a nice stereo. Decided I'm going with the two channel stereo route, as my living room is not conducive to a surround sound setup.

Thinking about getting a vintage reciever, seems like the stuff from the 70's/early 80's is just better made. Narrowed it down to either a Pioneer or Marantz. Thinking about pulling the trigger on this Pioneer SX-3900, just serviced and recapped. What do you think of the price?? Seems like a good deal, just serviced, 120 watts/channel, last of the good Pioneers.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=200489961230&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT

As for speakers, I decided to go for something newer, didn't want to deal with refoaming woofers and that nonsense. I found a pair of Cerwin Vega LS-12's for $150 on craigslist. Still waiting to hear back from the guy.
These were very well reviewed on audioreview.com, said the bass would rattle your fillings loose.

Anyways, my total budget is about $500. Any other floor speakers that you guys recommend? Am I spending too much on that monster Pioneer reciever?

Jesda
07-01-10, 11:25 PM
I've probably reached my limit with this hobby. After a while, you start going after fewer and fewer little improvements for more and more money.

Aron9000
07-02-10, 01:50 AM
Okay, so how much wattage do you really need to drive a big floor standing speaker? I'm looking for great sound, listen to a lot of metal. I like it loud, but honestly I don't need a system that will wake the dead. Probably piss off the neighbor. I feel like I've got Tim Allen syndrome looking at that Pioneer SX3900, 120 watts a channel, weights 60+lbs, rattles your pictures off the wall, grunt, grunt, grunt, grunt.

Submariner409
07-02-10, 12:51 PM
Amplifier power requirements depend on speaker efficiency and impedance.

A pair of mammoth Klipschorns (corner horn cabinets) can be driven to plaster-cracking levels with as little as 10 watts RMS. Conversly, a pair of old AR3a acoustic suspension speakers (moderate sized sealed enclosures) required well over 100 clean watts to drive them to comfortable listening levels.

My current setup uses a 100/100 watt tube amp to drive the midrange and high electrostatic panels and a 300/300 transistor amp to drive the 12" woofers (NHT 1249 drivers in my 3.5 cu/ft cabinets). The electronic crossover is 24dB/octave at 100Hz. This is in a 14x24 cathedral ceiling room.

Stingroo
07-02-10, 03:40 PM
Wow. That tube amp is so cool.

Submariner409
07-02-10, 05:16 PM
That's a VAC (Valve Amplification Company) PA100/100 built in 2002. Florida. Upgraded for me in 2007.

Here's a pair of Cary/AES SixPacs built in 2004 - Cary, NC. 50 watts/channel pure triode - they'll also crack plaster, and please your ears while doing it..........

There are more companies worldwide, right now, making tubes and tube audio electronics than there were in the 40's, 50's, and 60's. I have a CD player with an all tube driver and output stage - how's that for retro ?

See the bunch of Amperex Bugle Boy 12AX7's and 12AU7's ? I scored those at a yard sale, all new old stock (NOS), for $20. The lot is easily worth over $2,000 today.

ejguillot
07-02-10, 07:50 PM
Back from the dead!!!!

Anyways, I'm looking at finally buying a nice stereo. Decided I'm going with the two channel stereo route, as my living room is not conducive to a surround sound setup.

Thinking about getting a vintage reciever, seems like the stuff from the 70's/early 80's is just better made. Narrowed it down to either a Pioneer or Marantz. Thinking about pulling the trigger on this Pioneer SX-3900, just serviced and recapped. What do you think of the price?? Seems like a good deal, just serviced, 120 watts/channel, last of the good Pioneers.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=200489961230&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT

As for speakers, I decided to go for something newer, didn't want to deal with refoaming woofers and that nonsense. I found a pair of Cerwin Vega LS-12's for $150 on craigslist. Still waiting to hear back from the guy.
These were very well reviewed on audioreview.com, said the bass would rattle your fillings loose.

Anyways, my total budget is about $500. Any other floor speakers that you guys recommend? Am I spending too much on that monster Pioneer reciever?

The starting bid, once you add in shipping, would be, in my opinion, a fair price for the receiver. That said, make sure that adequate packaging (double box, 2" of foam between the inner and outer boxes for starters) is included in the price.

EChas3
07-03-10, 12:02 AM
Marantz was the top of the midrange or the bottom of premium in the 70's. It was never better than that, then. If very well preserved (or restored), a Marantz will outperform all but the best today. I like the sound of old fashioned output transisters. Tubes can be great but typically aren't worth the cost & trouble.

Today's predominantly IC Amps are crap. A 20-year old Onkyo or Yamaha kicks ass on newer ones. The new ones are built as cheap as possible. Again, this assumes the components haven't aged. But even the worst electronics are 10 times lower distortion than speakers.

Gravity kills most speakers in ten years or less. Surrounds sag, voice coils don't stay centered. They can be rebuilt. A friend of mine had his 30 years-old JBL's restored (cones & coils replaced but not the driver frames). For about $250, he has speakers better than many premium models costing $1,000.

If you're into the groovy sound, moving coil phono cartidges are great but the also age. Nowadays, quality costs 10 times what it used to.

SDCaddyLacky
07-03-10, 02:50 AM
Your right when you say that you have to spend even more money today, to obtain the high quality audio components from just 10 years ago.

For instance, I look at weight of an amp or receiver when it comes to the quality of the unit. The majority of mid range receivers costing anywhere from a $1,000-2,500 have gotten a lot lighter in the last few years. I am not sure where the weight loss is coming from, but it's very disturbing when a $1,500 Denon receiver weighs only 26lbs.

I have an Denon 3805 ( It got great reviews on all fronts) receiver that has a gun metal face plate ( Yes real metal, not aluminum), I bought it new when it first came out in 2004 for $1,200. It's an awesome sounding unit one of the best mid-level receivers in it's day, using high quality Burr-Brown DAC's on all channels, a huge power transformer, that can make any speaker sing. it's still works great, and I have yet to have a problem with it. It was also made in Japan, unlike every mid range Denon today, which are all made in CHINA! :mad:

My 3805 weighs a nice 37lbs, and the newest mid level Denon 3311, is $1,200 has a ton of features, is rated at 125W x 7, but it only weighs 26lbs. What gives? Denon had to cost cut on the transformer, by making it smaller, and the chassis using plastic instead of metal, other minor parts had to get cheaper in quality, maybe thiner wiring was used because that's a pretty significant weight reduction.

People forget that the majority of new receivers today use "discrete circuits", not the inferior "integrated circuits, or IC". You can still find great quality audio products today, but it's getting harder, since many of the higher end companies such as Harman/Kardon, Marantz, Denon, and even Yamaha have been on a cost cutting frenzy lately, more like cutting into it's quality, since materials have gone up in price, and the fact that they are trying to make a profit in a not so happy world of audio, this affects there bottom line and it's starting to show from what I can tell. You have to spend well over $2,000 right now, to get the quality and power of receivers that were made just 5 years ago. I have faith in Onkyo, because at least they are still building heavy duty units, which doesn't cost a whole lot of cash.

It's just like with everything else nowadays, the quality of appliances, cars, tools, electronics, furniture, has gone gotten worse over the years. I actually just bought a new A/C unit for my apartment, and it's so flimsy and cheap feeling compared to the one I bought 7 years ago.

SDCaddyLacky
07-03-10, 03:31 AM
I recently bought a Marantz 2245 off Craiglist for $150. It works great, considering how old it is, I was lucky since the previous owner was an electrical engineer, so it was maintained very well. Every single Capacitor was replaced with new ones, and the only problem I have so far, is some of the bulbs are burnt out. I was having problems with scratchiness in one of the channels, so I sprayed some of that good ole Deoxit in all the pots, which fixed the problem, as well as improved the sound quality big time.

I was so shocked when I first picked this thing up, it's freakin heavy! 34lbs. Everything about this unit is of very high quality, and it has a heavy duty build, there is no plastic pieces used from what I can tell, besides the front black face, behind it though is glass. These old vintage stereos are solid! I couldn't believe it when I first powered up this thing to my old speakers, it literally brought them to life! I had a old Harman/Kardon AVR 225 receiver in my room powering them for the longest time which I thought was great, but when I hooked up the old Marantz it was simply amazing how much better the Marantz sounded, not just the fact that every song I played sounded clearer, and had way more bass to it, but the fact that it's almost as if the sounds of every instrument coming through the speakers has weight to it, or like this force, you can actually feel the music that I never felt when listening to my 55W Harman/Kardon.

Remember, anytime you pick up a Vintage unit, you are most likely going to have to get it serviced, replace old parts, re-soldering, cleaning and re-alignment of the tuner are all a must if you want to know how these vintage pieces sounded when new.

You can't go wrong with Vintage 70's Marantz gear, especially the 22xx series which are well known to be one of the best Marantz receivers ever made. Sansui and Pionner was also great from what people say, but the Marantz has the "look" that sells, and the sound that everyone else tried to imitate.

Submariner409
07-03-10, 10:48 AM
Transformer weights are a sort of quality indicator, but that's not the whole picture for audio amplifiers. Many transistor amps use no coupling transformers in the speaker path, so all weight is in the power supply. McIntosh always used "autoformers" in their transistor amp outputs, so some Mc gear tips the scales at well over 60#. Those 2 SixPacs of mine are 35# each and the VAC100/100 is 71#. BUT the speaker transformers are huge.

Unless you are a dedicated audio yard sale junkie, in today's retail and catalog markets, as EChas and SDCaddy said: "You get what you pay for", and in many cases bigger is better.

You need to be slightly in the lunatic fringe to maintain tube gear :rolleyes:.

Aron9000
07-03-10, 03:31 PM
Yeah no tube gear for me, its aggrivating enough tracing down electrical gremlins in my car.