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leroydiamond

A thread for Basschatters who have an interest in HIFI

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With covid related restrictions, my HIFI has been a real source of comfort. Having to restrict my movements, has put my system right at the centre of my world and it has got more use than at any time before. The curse of covid has resulted in me rediscovering some of my favourite music and descovering lots of new stuff. During this period, I have upgraded my kit considerably and would like to hear from fellow members on here about their HIFI exploits.

I am a recent convert to streaming on Tidal, but have no plans to abandon CD or vinyl. They all have a place in my world.

 

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Personally I have always liked LP records. I never really connected with CD in the same way and I find CD was only ever really good for the car. Vinyl has of course become fashionable now but I'm just old! I have about 800 of my LPs in the living room and love my Hi-Fi set up which is a Richer Sounds purchase from around 12 years ago. I'd always planned to upgrade but the stuff I have is so much better than any other system I have owned it doesn't seem worth doing.

IMG_4002.jpg.e89ee91d02641e1cd58917606b866e0f.jpg

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My friend has fixed few HMV 78 rpm players and plays the records in a local bar. The sound is fab, and I like many of the recordings of the time: singers are very good and the level of the bands is pretty high. No overdubs, just studiolive. Wonderful stuff.

Most of my equipment is from 80's and 90's except the CD and the speakers. Many people here love names: Nakamichi 582Z, Technics SL-1210MK2, Panasonic SV-3700, Kenwood KT-6040, Pioneer A-656 & DT-570, Sony SCD-XB770, and Gradient 1.5.

Another, smaller set is in the garage, but there I have only Stax headphones and some valve stuff to drive them.

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48 minutes ago, Cat Burrito said:

Personally I have always liked LP records. I never really connected with CD in the same way and I find CD was only ever really good for the car. Vinyl has of course become fashionable now but I'm just old! I have about 800 of my LPs in the living room and love my Hi-Fi set up which is a Richer Sounds purchase from around 12 years ago. I'd always planned to upgrade but the stuff I have is so much better than any other system I have owned it doesn't seem worth doing.

IMG_4002.jpg.e89ee91d02641e1cd58917606b866e0f.jpg

That is a lovely unit for storing your LP's. Great to be happy and content with your system

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29 minutes ago, itu said:

My friend has fixed few HMV 78 rpm players and plays the records in a local bar. The sound is fab, and I like many of the recordings of the time: singers are very good and the level of the bands is pretty high. No overdubs, just studiolive. Wonderful stuff.

Most of my equipment is from 80's and 90's except the CD and the speakers. Many people here love names: Nakamichi 582Z, Technics SL-1210MK2, Panasonic SV-3700, Kenwood KT-6040, Pioneer A-656 & DT-570, Sony SCD-XB770, and Gradient 1.5.

Another, smaller set is in the garage, but there I have only Stax headphones and some valve stuff to drive them.

Don't hear much about 78's anymore and despite their age, can still sound fab. Brilliant.

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I've listened to tons of stuff over the last six months, but to be honest it's more about delivery as opposed to things hi-fi.  The only thing that disappoints me is that I haven't used the time to discover new music, but I have so much to listen to that I do enjoy already, I generally feel a little let down when I hear a lot of what constitutes hot new things.

I used to have so much kit, all gone in favour of stereo pairs of Sonos Ones dotted around the house; I just create playlists in the Spotify PC app or stream FLAC content off a NAS into the Sonos.  Two boxes of vinyl up in the loft, about 2,000 CDs in boxes barely two metres from where I am now. 

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I bought a Quad amp in 1971 and still have it. I also had a pair of Tannoy Chatsworths at the same time but sold them ten years ago for £1k, replacing them with a smaller, but not quite as good, pair of Tannoys. I originally had a good collection of vinyl kept in mint condition but unwisely threw them all out when we moved two houses ago. The CD player came along a bit later. So the amp has been with me for nearly fifty years and is still going strong.

Edit: And thank you to all those kind people who reacted so favourably towards this post. I should add that in all those 50 years the amp/preamp haven't been revalved. I presume they’ve got valves.

77665A84-E916-4735-B8F5-D1CACF897AC3.thumb.jpeg.788e0e64311b8d4453b3c4d645a63dba.jpeg

Edited by bassace
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3 hours ago, NancyJohnson said:

I've listened to tons of stuff over the last six months, but to be honest it's more about delivery as opposed to things hi-fi.  The only thing that disappoints me is that I haven't used the time to discover new music, but I have so much to listen to that I do enjoy already, I generally feel a little let down when I hear a lot of what constitutes hot new things.

I used to have so much kit, all gone in favour of stereo pairs of Sonos Ones dotted around the house; I just create playlists in the Spotify PC app or stream FLAC content off a NAS into the Sonos.  Two boxes of vinyl up in the loft, about 2,000 CDs in boxes barely two metres from where I am now. 

I agree about feeling let down with the latest and greatest. However steaming from Tidal, Spotify etc allows for endless searching to find new music that tastes pretty close to my cup of tea. 

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Oh man, this is going to be a good thread :)

I have an old tube hifi amp that makes the kind of music I like sound like it's being played in the room (I've always believed that music recorded through tubes sounds best played through tubes, Nina Simone, Mile Davis and Motown all sound amazing, Chilis and Mumfords not so much). I'm a massive nerd, I love music for the production values as much as for the tunes and performances, so will happily listen to music on the hifi that I'd never listen to in the car, for example Dark Side of the Moon.

My kids are now old enough to not put their fingers through cones so might even dig out my old floor standers to replace the bookshelves currently in use. That'll please Mrs Beedster no end :)

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28 minutes ago, Beedster said:

Oh man, this is going to be a good thread :)

I have an old tube hifi amp that makes the kind of music I like sound like it's being played in the room (I've always believed that music recorded through tubes sounds best played through tubes, Nina Simone, Mile Davis and Motown all sound amazing, Chilis and Mumfords not so much). I'm a massive nerd, I love music for the production values as much as for the tunes and performances, so will happily listen to music on the hifi that I'd never listen to in the car, for example Dark Side of the Moon.

My kids are now old enough to not put their fingers through cones so might even dig out my old floor standers to replace the bookshelves currently in use. That'll please Mrs Beedster no end :)

Like what you say about music being recorded with tubes, sounding best when being played back with tube amplification and totally agree with you regarding the production value. If something is badly produced, I have little interest in listening to it, regardless of the musicianship or song writing etc. My system is very revealing, so if something is recorded badly, it sounds bad. 

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5 hours ago, bassace said:

I bought a Quad amp in 1971 and still have it. I also had a pair of Tannoy Chatsworths at the same time but sold them ten years ago for £1k, replacing them with a smaller, but not quite as good, pair of Tannoys. I originally had a good collection of vinyl kept in mint condition but unwisely threw them all out when we moved two houses ago. The CD player came along a bit later. So the amp has been with me for nearly fifty years and is still going strong.

77665A84-E916-4735-B8F5-D1CACF897AC3.thumb.jpeg.788e0e64311b8d4453b3c4d645a63dba.jpeg

The thing is, if your quad ever gives trouble, it is very serviceable. That has been an incredibly reliable piece of kit.

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5 hours ago, bassace said:

I bought a Quad amp in 1971 and still have it. I also had a pair of Tannoy Chatsworths at the same time but sold them ten years ago for £1k, replacing them with a smaller, but not quite as good, pair of Tannoys. I originally had a good collection of vinyl kept in mint condition but unwisely threw them all out when we moved two houses ago. The CD player came along a bit later. So the amp has been with me for nearly fifty years and is still going strong.

77665A84-E916-4735-B8F5-D1CACF897AC3.thumb.jpeg.788e0e64311b8d4453b3c4d645a63dba.jpeg

I was a manager for Our Price Records for about 8 years back in the late 80's and those Quad amps were standard kit in all the stores. Fabulous amps and totally reliable - they were on for about 10 hours every day for 6 days a week and i never heard of one dying in any of the stores that i worked in. 

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10 minutes ago, leroydiamond said:

The thing is, if your quad ever gives trouble, it is very serviceable. That has been an incredibly reliable piece of kit.

The amp has been 100% trouble free. The CD player had a problem with the drawer but Quad did a speedy repair for not a lot of money, as I recall.

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6 hours ago, NancyJohnson said:

I've listened to tons of stuff over the last six months, but to be honest it's more about delivery as opposed to things hi-fi.  The only thing that disappoints me is that I haven't used the time to discover new music, but I have so much to listen to that I do enjoy already, I generally feel a little let down when I hear a lot of what constitutes hot new things.

I used to have so much kit, all gone in favour of stereo pairs of Sonos Ones dotted around the house; I just create playlists in the Spotify PC app or stream FLAC content off a NAS into the Sonos.  Two boxes of vinyl up in the loft, about 2,000 CDs in boxes barely two metres from where I am now. 

We've got a pair of Bluesound equivalent to Sonos one in the kitchen and then the Powernode in the front room with this weird 2.1 speaker system Bluesound did. Apparently no-one wanted 2.1 speakers in Europe. I think it's great, I get small bookshelf speakers, and then one of the toy boxes under the TV is actually a sub. 

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7 hours ago, itu said:

My friend has fixed few HMV 78 rpm players and plays the records in a local bar. The sound is fab, and I like many of the recordings of the time: singers are very good and the level of the bands is pretty high. No overdubs, just studiolive. Wonderful stuff.

Most of my equipment is from 80's and 90's except the CD and the speakers. Many people here love names: Nakamichi 582Z, Technics SL-1210MK2, Panasonic SV-3700, Kenwood KT-6040, Pioneer A-656 & DT-570, Sony SCD-XB770, and Gradient 1.5.

Another, smaller set is in the garage, but there I have only Stax headphones and some valve stuff to drive them.

+ 1 on the Stax headphones. Mine are a little Bass Light but the musicality / clarity is magic.

Have a mix of oldish / newish stuff.

Linn lp12 + Manticore mantra turntables

Nad CD player

Audiolab 8000 pre amp and 2 X power amps

Musical Fidelity Mf2 speakers (bi-amped)

Kenwood Cassette deck that I haven't used for ages

Massive 1960s Empire reference turntable that I inherited from my late Dad. (Lives under my bed)

Edited by JottoSW1
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6 hours ago, JottoSW1 said:

+ 1 on the Stax headphones. Mine are a little Bass Light but the musicality / clarity is magic.

 

Kenwood Cassette deck that I haven't used for ages

The headphones may get benefit from different amps. I had a transistor based set first, but now I use a tiny tube headphone amp, and it is the thing. I think it is called Nobsound or similar. Ridiculously cheap, very functional with Stax.

Is the Kenwood's type "Cooking chef", like my friend named one unit he had? There was something wrong with the tape transport.

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I'm currently using my studio set up more to make my own music, but I do have a hifi - here with the Leema Xavier speakers - also have some Ditton 66 series 2. Kit is Clearaudio Revolution/SME3009/AudioNote cart into EAR 834Pdeluxe phono, plus Advantage CD player, Denon dvd all into Bow Warlock Pre-amp and Bryston 14bsst power amp. Sounds alright!

hifiwide.thumb.JPG.1acf462f2fbc66eed282c8294daa9bf8.JPG

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I worked in record stores for many years (70's to early 90's) and was a manager for 12 years. At the time, I think the deck-of-choice in most of the stores was the good old Garrard SP25 MkIII. Amps, speakers, etc., varied greatly depending on the particular store.
I stopped buying/upgrading hi-fi a long time ago but do have a decent enough system -- for me -- mainly comprising of Technics separates (e.g., A900 Mk2 amp, SL-P770 CD player, Systym speakers, etc). However, I also still have (and use) two original bits of hifi kit that I bought around 1972/3 - a Pioneer PL12D deck and a pair of Leak 2020 bookshelf speakers. Both still going strong. :)

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As soon as I started my first job one of the first things I set my heart on was a decent HiFi set up, so off I went... (on HP, with my dad as guarantor!).

I took advice and ended up getting a Dual 404 turntable, Mordaunt Short MS10s, an Arcam Alpha amp, and an Aiwa cassette deck (can’t remember which one).

As vinyl has been stored away over the years due to (lack of) space I’ve ended up with a NAD C350 amp, a Marantz 6004 CD player, and a pair of B&W 685 S2 speakers.

I’ve had the NAD amp for years now. The Marantz is a few years old (it has an input for digital devices, which is why I changed from a previous Marantz model I’d had for over 20 years - the older one developed a fault with the laser just outside the first year warranty and Marantz replaced it and it was then fine for two decades!). The B&W speakers were an upgrade on a previous set of B&Ws, and for me they are my perfect speaker.

Headphones-wise I’ve gone a bit mad over recent years and have a couple of sets of B&W (wired and wireless) and a pair of Sennheiser wireless earbuds.

I really miss the whole physical interaction with vinyl, but unfortunately, given a toss-up between having the LPs or somewhere to sit, I’ve been outvoted!

image.thumb.jpeg.25bfcb7e1d3264db66ad8d605cca2703.jpeg

 

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3 hours ago, Leonard Smalls said:

I'm currently using my studio set up more to make my own music, but I do have a hifi - here with the Leema Xavier speakers - also have some Ditton 66 series 2. Kit is Clearaudio Revolution/SME3009/AudioNote cart into EAR 834Pdeluxe phono, plus Advantage CD player, Denon dvd all into Bow Warlock Pre-amp and Bryston 14bsst power amp. Sounds alright!

hifiwide.thumb.JPG.1acf462f2fbc66eed282c8294daa9bf8.JPG

Sweet system and bet it sounds terrific

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I love a bit of Hifi, had a thread over in off-topic a while back about choosing my new amp after my Cyrus 6 went pop.

 

the TL:DR is that i went for a Musical Fidelity M2si and am very happy with it, swapped out my old Castle Durham 2 standmounts for a pair of Castle Severn 2 floorstanders at the same time.

I mainly listen to Vinyl, A thorens TD160 mk2 with an SME 3009 arm that i got free from a mates dad for 33rpm duties and a Nad 533 (rebadged rega) for 45rpm,  marantz cd63, Nakamichi cassette deck 2 and then a denon tu260 and a pure DAB for radio, the turntables are linked via a project phonobox s and a cambridge audio 540 (i think)

I have a friend that worked at mission many years ago so some of this obsession comes from a big stack of brochures he gave me when i was about 15!

DSC_0017.thumb.JPG.5c82ceaf7737987688ec23ab6aeab448.JPG

 

the rack was homebuilt using ideas from TNT audio (it's a modified TNT Flexy) it's the second one i have built, had to replace the original one to make more space for vinyl (and so as to make space for the second turntable)

 

Matt

 

Matt

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The journey.

In the early 70's I read too many magazines & caught the bug. Went to hi-fi shows, sat-in on listening panels, read more mags & dipped into hi-fi shops for a listen & drool - probably saw Bassaces' Quad. Lust but not enough cash.
Started  with a 10w per channel Amstrad!! Dad and I paired it with a Wharfedale Linton home built kit. 1976, a JVC cassette deck. 1977, an Alba UA 900 33w p/c amp, "a poor man's Sugden" (stil got it wrapped up in the loft). This was followed by another (bigger of course & on a stand) ) home built loudspeaker based on an 8" Dalesford speaker and a Shackman Electrostatic for mids &treble. Mmmm, nice. Went to Alex Shackman's house in Barnet for a personal audition.


About '77, found Graham's Hi-fi in Islington. Really upmarket. Left with an Edinburgh Wireless FM tuner (Nytech in disguise) and a pair of PWB Electrostatic Headphones. Now we're motoring. Discovered Direct-Cut discs - Dave Grusin "Mountain Dance" was one. The PWB transformer failed in the 90's.


Still in  '78, bought an AR Sugden turntable & GH Hadcock tone arm. They're still parked in the hi-fi unit, loved but unused. Tweaked the platter with an anti-resonace damping pad.


Married and moved. Walking to the car-park after work and spotted a Sugden A48 II in a record shop window!!  It was a shop demo unit; I had to have it. It lasted about 12 years until I re-fitted the wrong plug into the wrong socket (hi-fi ffurniture re-fit) and blew an output transistor. Off to Sugden for £120 repair. I did a similar trick (with the mains extension socket thing on the back) early in the new century. There was a bang. Anybody want an old Sugden to fiddle with; A 48II, Serial No. 5723 awaits your screwdriver & soldering iron. Too embarrassed to send it back to Sugden again, so opted for a nice Denon 455 receiver which would have cost less than a major Sugden repair. Aiwa cassette deck bought in late 80's. Now parked and unused. I'm down to 20 cassettes.


In the mid-late 90's CD's were the thing. More magazine articles. Marantz this, Marantz that - the best in it's class etc,. Went to Audio T in Enfield with my own CD's. "No sir, you don't need to spend extra on our extended warranties. These products are all very reliable." Auditioned Marantz ?67, a £600  Audiolab and a YamahaCDX 550. "The Marantz is a little more exciting" said the man. Thank you, said I. I started to become aware that I was listening to the eqipment (i knew the music backwards) but was the "excitement" accurate or was it showroom appeal? I came out with the Yamaha. I changed the cd-tray drive belt last year. If the electronics fails I'll change it, but not otherwise. Probably 24 years + amd counting.


Circa 2015 bought a Van Den Huul interconnect for the CD player - a clear difference in both the revelation of detail & smooth presentation of the mids & high-mids. 70th birthday treat - Monitor Audio Bronze floor-standers. Great for cathedral organ music. Last year,  Beyer Dynamics DT880's. Oh yes!


LP's being phased out, the weak & unloved ones go to a local vinyl re-seller or Oxfam, the top one's are going to my grandson and many old/lesser CD's are being digitised. Maybe one day it'll all come down to a Brennan? Well, maybe one CD for the birthday & one for Christmas.

 

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2 hours ago, Stingray5 said:

However, I also still have (and use) two original bits of hifi kit that I bought around 1972/3 - a Pioneer PL12D deck and a pair of Leak 2020 bookshelf speakers. Both still going strong. :)

Ah Leak 2020's!

I had a pair of 2030's which were great but the tweeters went at some point and the wifeley one wanted them replaced with something smaller. Still have the Rotel amp which powered them though - currently running the wee monitors in my recording setup!

The smaller setup agreed with my wife was an early Bose Lifestyle system with two small direct/ reflect speakers and one big sub. I won't get into whether Bose qualifies as HiFi or not here - suffice to say that after more than 20 years it is still providing sterling service.

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1 hour ago, EMG456 said:

Ah Leak 2020's!

I had a pair of 2030's which were great but the tweeters went at some point and the wifeley one wanted them replaced with something smaller. Still have the Rotel amp which powered them though - currently running the wee monitors in my recording setup!

The smaller setup agreed with my wife was an early Bose Lifestyle system with two small direct/ reflect speakers and one big sub. I won't get into whether Bose qualifies as HiFi or not here - suffice to say that after more than 20 years it is still providing sterling service.

Bose comes in for a bad wrap by some, yet the first time I heard those 2 little cubes and sub, I was blown away. For one thing their foot print was tiny in comparison with anything else on the market at the time, so ideal for the small flat/ bedsit that I and many of my peers called home. Within such an environment there was nothing to touch them for decent sound. 

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