A twist on "Your absolute best..."

OK, here's a spin on the thread of "Your absolute best...". I mulled that question over for a while. Best in that regard is best sound, but you may have another piece which you particularly take pride in. Maybe your most interesting piece. It may not be your "best", but it does certainly deserve mention. My component, an old Edison phonograph. It is a floor standing console, I believe from the 1920's(from the phonographs which came with it). It is a wind up, and plays at 80rpm(NOT 78). Sits in my basement, as a stand for some of the junk down there. Could use some restoration of the cabinet as a result. I certainly cannot say it is a better component than my Jadis amp or Coincident speakers, but it sure is more interesting. It was bought by my family in the 1970s at a garage sale, for next to nothing. Have no idea of its worth, but I am not selling. Would love to see the list we come up with.
Hi Trelja; when I was a kid (45-50 yrs. ago), my folks had an Edison windup phonograph in the attic, complete with a stack of near 1/4" thick records. We got to play it once in awhile, and all I'll say is that hifi has come a long way since then! As to your thread, in this age of digital, a couple of years ago, I bought a Sony 3 head KA3ES cassette recorder (MSRP $980.) that sounds excellent when good ($3.50-$4.) tapes are used. I use it to make tapes for my truck, and walkman(s). I record my own from CD. The main thing lacking in sound quality are some dynamics; tape hiss is almost non-existent. Very smooth. When other systems are down, I really don't mind listening to tapes made and played on this machine-- it's that good. Cheers. Craig.
i also have an edison and a collection of a couple hundred records. my most prized music maker, tho, is a regina music box. its made of mahogany and was completely restored about 20 years ago by a friend of an uncle, who brought rare antique automobiles to concours condition. (never will forget, he had a pristine 1904 oldsmobile in his dining room.) the regina plays "records" that are about 24" in diameter; these records have tabs that contact arms on the music box mechanism to produce sound. we have 40 or 50 records that each plays about 3 minutes. the mahogany resonates beautifully. great fun, especially for kids.
Here I have an unusual favorite component with a twist, my amp rack. I have described it before but it is very similiar to a salamanderdesign architype, with the exception of the shelving material T-6061 1/4" thick aluminum. It weighs about 250lbs (plus or minus a little bit) it is hard to move with two people, but when it is where it belongs it is not going any place especially with all of the equipment on it. I have been offered A LOT for it but just will not part with it, it is the only component that I made so it holds a certain amount sentimental value. (Not to mention the blood and sweat lost upon its creation)
Good post Tireguy; I also made my own double-wide stereo stand-- concrete filled corner posts, British Tenderfeet, 200+ lbs. etc. I want my previous post back so I too can select my stereo rack-- thanks for the reminder. Cheers. Craig
I also have an old wind up called "Sonora Baby Grand" made by the Sonora Phonograph Co. in about 1915. My wife's grandfather bought it new, so we also have the owner's manual and 50-60 records. It has different needles for playing different makes of records. Some of the records require speeds up to 95 rpm. Even using the owner's manual to get the best sound (it says to be patient as a thorough knowledge of how to use it is necessary in order to obtain the best results)still doesn't quite match the new system.
The tuner is blown, the dial lights are out, and it looks like hell, but I'll always cherish my Radio Shack receiver. It was the first "stereo system" I ever bought, and it was my only system for 25 years. Turntables, speakers, tape decks came and went (or were stolen, but who would steal a 25 year old Radio Shack receiver?) but that old receiver just kept cranking away. I can't use it, and I'll probably never fix it (I did take it to a repair shop, we all had a good laugh) but I know it'll be somewhere nearby til I can't be tuned in anymore and my dial lights go out. Hell, how could I part with the piece that played "The Night Chicago Died" (on 45) at my 7th grade party, Led Zepplin's 4th album during my "Blizzard of '78 Survivors" party, consoled me with the Talking Heads and Sex Pistols when I'd get home late from 2nd shift in the mill, played Barry Sadler "Ballad of the Green Berets" when I graduated from Army OCS, then provided the polkas and Marvin Gaye at my wedding a week later, survived moves all over the country, one home renovation (and 3 subsequent break-ins) playing the likes of Dwight Yoakum, Johnny Cash, Bill Monroe and the Carter Family as my carpentry career progressed, and passed its last few notes providing Etta James and B.B. King to the hot tub room at the beach house. In fact, maybe we'll take another look at those dial lights....


Hi, Trelja. I think I still have some old 78-rpm records that my mother gave to me years ago. If I can find them, would you be interested in having them?
My Mom's Phillips Console (Big piece of furniture) has Phono, AM, FM and SW(Short Wave). Still sits in their den, but does not work I believe. Could be made to work again. (New tubes and internal wires, etc.) You guys would appreciate the time my Mom had it upgraded (shall we call it a MOD?) Many moons ago, she upgraded the turntable so instead of just 78s, it would also play the new high tech 33.3 and 45 RPM records !!! Ha !!!
Hey SdCampbell. I have a Dual Turntable from the 60s that plays 78s. The United Audio model with the wood base.
Hmmm, maybe no FM in my Mom's Philips console. My Mom also worked for Sylvania making Tubes !!!! She was a utility operator, she could every job on the assembly line, so she would train new people or fill in for breaks, illness, etc. She was well paid for that time. My parent do have a Tube Sylvania AM radio that does still work. I turned it on last time I was home. The AM reception is fantastic. Shows what a joke AM is on our audiophile tuners. (There is a thread currently on the AM subject).
Chas, I know the feeling... In memory, my "first" was and is still my best (whether we're talking stereos or sex). Great post!