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04-08-2010, 09:48 AM   #1
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Any audiophiles around here?

I used to be into audio back in the early 80's. I sold low end equipment and bought higher end stuff with the money I made. I had some nice stuff back then, NAD and Phase linear Amps, Homebuilt speakers with KEF drivers, AR Turntable with signet arm etc. But like my photography something happened and I basically stopped in the late 80's when I quit the audio job. I ended up listening to a low end surround sound system on low end Polk speakers for the last 10 years or so.

My wife and I decided to make a media room out of one of our bedrooms for relaxing. We decided on putting in a nice audio system but absolutely no video or tv. After checking out the prices of new stuff I decided that I'd just go retro with my search and see what I could do on craigslist and eBay.

Craigslist was the first score. I found a pair of Snell J-III speakers for 100 bucks, like new. Unbelievable sound for a set of medium sized two ways. Probably the best boxes I've ever owned. I found a friend with a room of old equipment. He's giving me a California Audio Labs TUBE CD player to use as my source.

The bad news is that I got a NAD receiver on eBay to be my Amp and it smoked when I turned it on. The seller is refunding my money and has been very gracious about it. He's a collector and his wife has ordered him to sell some equipment. In our conversations I found he's got a nice Marantz Amp that he may end up selling me as a replacement for the NAD. I might go with that or I'm also considering looking on eBay for a decent classic amp from the 70-80's era.

So far I've got the speakers and cd for 100 bucks. I'm not planning on going back to vinyl as thats a big investment. It's hard to believe what you can find if you look, and know what you are looking for.

Anybody else into the audio arts?

04-08-2010, 10:02 AM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by VaughnA Quote

Anybody else into the audio arts?
Yes, but, my camera-phile habit keeps me from acting on it. Buying electronics on ebay is always a crap shoot. At least you have a seller willing to work with you.

04-08-2010, 10:03 AM   #3
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I'm slightly into headphones.

I shy away from audiophiliitity or whatever the correct term.

I did get called one once because I mentioned I was buying a soundcard...
04-08-2010, 10:05 AM   #4
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I have some pretty nice stereo equipment, a nice turntable and a hell of a lot of records, but I always refrain from calling myself an 'audiophile', I dont generally like to associate with people that as a mojority have snobbish attitude about listening to music. :ugh:

04-08-2010, 11:04 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by séamuis Quote
I have some pretty nice stereo equipment, a nice turntable and a hell of a lot of records, but I always refrain from calling myself an 'audiophile', I dont generally like to associate with people that as a mojority have snobbish attitude about listening to music. :ugh:
It's another hobby and a way to enjoy listening to music. My wife wouldn't listen to the old system. She hated the way it sounded. She loves the new system. A lot of my point is that you can build a great 'audiophile' system with older quality components cheaper than you can buy a new crappy system. Kind of like using an old quality piece of glass instead of a new plastic lens.
04-08-2010, 01:22 PM   #6
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I don't consider my an audiophile, I don't have much disposable income to spend on audio gear most of it goes to photography anyway.

I do spend some time on the head-fi forums.

At least I can buy something of quality and use it til it's broke (no LBA equivalent there !). I'm plenty satisfied with what I have, and I got very good prices for the most part. I believe there ' s a huge diminishing returns.


on the go
etymotics er4p with S adapter
xin mini amp
sansa fuze/clip and zune 80 (too bad no lossless)

at home
beyer dynamics headphones
harmon kardon avr w/ no speaker worth mentioning
PC w/ modified soundblaster

anything analogue my dad has it, at least what I didnt break...
04-08-2010, 03:49 PM   #7
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My system is a mix of '80s and early '90s Sony components with newer Sony headphones and some house brand Radio Shack bookshelf speakers (because I don't have space for anything larger). A long ways from audiophile but it meets my needs.
04-08-2010, 04:00 PM   #8
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Yes, I enjoy listening to music. I have three distinct systems in the house - a decent surround system in the living room driven by a Blu-Ray player, my stereo gear from college in the family room with my old Pioneer receiver driving some early-'70s Altec Lansing "book shelf" speakers with my old Pioneer CD player and turntable, and my thrift store Sansui in the garage driving my Bose Freespace 2-channel system.

Thankfully, I'm cheap otherwise I might actually buy some of the modern medium-end gear I read about.

All said, the hobby of listening to LPs is a relaxing experience in itself and a nice distraction. Listening to CDs is more of a support activity for when I'm editing photos or working in the garage.

04-08-2010, 04:24 PM   #9
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There are definitely incredible deals on older audio gear. I had to sell off a system last summer in Canada and saw what my lovely gear (mostly Linn) brought me. Not much!

For new gear there are better deals than what the snake-oil audiophile community makes their profit from.

I am trained as an audio engineer and sound artist. But I do not call myself an audiophile; it's a negative term in many qaurters.
04-08-2010, 04:25 PM   #10
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I used to be more into it than now. I've built a lot of my own speakers, including some with 6' ribbon drivers. I am also partial to tube sound for my music-only system, and I rebuilt a pair of McIntosh MC30s a few years ago which have been terrific. Once in a while, I re-tube them and change the sound (I have several sets).
04-08-2010, 07:14 PM   #11
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I switched, cameras and lenses take up so much less room

Though, these are the things that cured me: building my own kit amps (Audio Note 7 watt single ended triode, and their pre-amp) and buying off ebay two sets of vintage JBL's - Lancer 77's and Lancer 44's with the single full range driver. Oh, I rigged them with a 6 inch Raven ribbon in a series cross over. These, plus the few other amps I have, plus some Dynaco and EV speaks, and a few thousand records, too much. This time when we move house I'll dispose of a good deal of it.

But anyhow, I'll be reluctantly selling off the JBL L-44's with the LE-8T's soon. And I'll make money on them
04-08-2010, 11:03 PM   #12
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While not an audiophile by an stretch, since i got my bose sounddock i haven't looked at much else. The bose i so very perfect for me due to its decent sound and i can take it when i work away, just doesn't go real loud.
But i have logitech z-5500 hooked up to my xbox that i plug the old ipod into for parties etc, which goes quite loud enough, but by no means my perfect solution.... the sound system i wanted got considered until wifey saw the price she doesn't understand quality...

Earphones is where most of my listening happens these days,
Denon AH C710
Sennheiser CX 300
Sennheiser PMX 80
04-09-2010, 02:08 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by séamuis Quote
I have some pretty nice stereo equipment, a nice turntable and a hell of a lot of records, but I always refrain from calling myself an 'audiophile', I dont generally like to associate with people that as a mojority have snobbish attitude about listening to music. :ugh:
I like the ones who find an artist/album they like - the music, the lyrics - but have to toss the whole thing because the album doesn't live up to their $40,000 hand-made-in-Luxembourg sound system, because they designed the system around test SACDs instead of real music.

And all those magic cables that cost more per foot than Sterling silver chain. Whoops, did I say "cables"? I meant "interconnects."
04-09-2010, 04:47 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by lithos Quote
And all those magic cables that cost more per foot than Sterling silver chain. Whoops, did I say "cables"? I meant "interconnects."
I swear I have written exactly that same paragraph. Including the "whoops". Really!

I once listened to a system in which just the interconnects cost 40 grand. And it sounded good. What I really wanted to do was replace them with bog standard cable and see if there was a difference.

People in professional audio laugh at audiophiles.
04-09-2010, 05:43 AM   #15
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Boy did open a can of worms. I'm not anywhere near that crazy. I use 16 gauge speaker wire from radio shack and equipment that I'm pulling together from friends equipment piles and craigslist. I'm not getting the new cd player because it has tubes, I want it because it's free. Would enthusiast be a better term?

Audiophile is the only term that I can think of to describe someone who likes to have good equipment to hear the performance in the music. But like anything there are extremists. After replacing my speakers I heard little pieces in some of my albums that I've never heard before. Not little things but full passages in the background. There is a big difference between a set of 200.00 consumer bookshelf speakers and 1000.00 'audiophile speakers'. My wife commented about the audio quality from upstairs when I fired up the new speakers in our basement.

All this negativity from people who peep at pixels that won't be noticed if they printed out the picture instead of enlarged it 200% on their screen;-)
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