| Townshend Audio Rock 7 pic|
Townshend Audio Excalibur 3
Townshend Audio Merlin 3
Ortofon Cadenza Bronze MC
Alphason HR-100s MCS Titanium
Madrigal Carnegie One MC
Valve Amplification Company Signature MkIIa
Valve Amplification Company Phi 200 KT88
Electron Kinetics Eagle 2A SS
Von Schweikert Audio Unifield 3
REL Acoustics T5 (two of them)
Ray Samuels Audio The Raptor
AKG K702 Reference Headphones
PurePower 1050 AC Regenerator
Paul Speltz Audio Zero Autoformers
Paul Speltz Audio Anti-Cables and Anti-ICs
Paul Speltz Audio Power Cables Beta
Salamander 40 Audio Rack
Audio Desk Vinyl Cleaner
Onzow Zero Dust Stylus Cleaner Tweak
Lyra SPL Stylus Performance Stuff Tweak
Milty Zero Stat Static Eliminator Tweak
Hunt E.D.A. Mark 6 Record Brush Tweak
Nick (my electrician) 20Amp Dedicated circuit Tweak
Cruze Audio The Maestro Wall Outlet
Critical Listening Education pdf Document
Alón's Analogue Array
This system has been a work in progress Since 1980. I bought my first audiophile gear at Hi Fi Haven, which was a high-end audio dealer in my college neighborhood in NJ. This was not a part of town you'd expect an audio store, on its left was a strip club and on its right was Greasy Tony's Cheesesteaks, which was open all night and staffed with the shadiest motley crew imaginable. Ah, you gotta love college in NJ when the drinking age was 18. Most of my friends frequented the two latter businesses, I think I was the only one who added HiFi Haven as a point of interest.
At HiFi Haven, a guy named Peter Cuddy took the time to teach me how to listen, not just hear. For that I'm not sure if I am eternally grateful or really pissed off for letting a college kid buy a cassette deck in the 4 figures. I wonder if he's still around? Can't blame him, since way before we met, I had (as an adolescent) been putting what my wife calls audio-porn up on my bedroom walls. The one I remember distinctly was a cool Sansui receiver with a lit up FM dial I was drooling over at 14 years old. I also remember enhancing the sound of my crappy plastic all-in-one's speakers by reinstalling them in... wait for it, empty one gallon cardboard milk containers. They sure sounded way better... By 15, I was totally hooked.
As an adult, I tend to choose very good elements that sound great together and hold on to them for a long time while I enjoy my system thoroughly. Only recently did I sell that first piece of gear, which I admit was a strange way to start my Audiophilia – a Nakamichi 680ZX. All those cool phosphorescent lights and knobs to play with... who knew a source component would have been a better choice?
I love gear, but what I really care about is music. As I write this, I've got my AKGs on (wife's asleep), listening to Dexter Gordon's One Flight Up on a pristine Blue Note test pressing. The combination of my analog front end (both the Alphason/Madrigal set-up and the Townshend/Ortofon rig), fed through the VAC and driven by the Raptor is producing such gorgeous, live sound that it's hard to imagine it getting any better.
Stop laughing, I know we've all felt this way many times... until we reach the next level, where we are once again slack-jawed and astonished that "we never heard that before!"
Adding the REL subs to the VSA Unifield 3s made my system able to reproduce a believable and frankly astonishing concert-level experience.
Next experiment is a 20 amp dedicated AC line to my system.
Thanks for reading. Your thoughtful comments are most welcome. Except about the photos, I know they suck. I'll get to them one day. Cheers!