Vimak DT-1000 Transport
Vimak DS-1800 DAC
CJ 8--The XS version---EL34's just give you more of that"why you bought tubes" sound--(compared to 6550 version).Theta Data 3, because transports do matter.
- Technics SP-10 MK II/III turntable
- Audio Research SP-11 preamp
- Infinity Beta speakers
- Mark Levinson 27.5 amp
Rowland Model 6, 8Ti and 9Ti solid-state amps. Rowland Coherence II solid-state preamp.
There is a lot of gear from the 90's that is still very competitive, especially amps and preamps. I think it's fair to say that the major advances have mostly taken place in the realm of digital, which makes sense, as CD players are computers (and thus generally getting better all the time).
With the exception of digital products, anything that was competitive in the 90s should still be quite competitive now. it's not like there have been any fundamental advances in sound reproduction in the past 15 years. A lot of worthwhile refinements, but nothing earth shaking.
I agree with Onhwy61...pretty much everything should still hold it's own, maybe even some of the digital stuff?
I own some 90's gear so will mention those:
Apogee Duetta Signatures/Speakers
Audioprism Mantissa/Tubed pre-amp
Linn Klout amp and Kairn preamp.
dCS Elgar - debuted in 1996 and still in production with minor software changes and the addition of Firewire input.
YBA Integre amplifier.
Sonus Faber Extremas.
Hey Jvogt, The infinity speakers do NOT hold up,
because the foam has rotted by now.
Do you have Beta speakers? If so, when did you
replace the foam?
Pass Aleph. The Aleph P pre amp with remote is listing higher than 2-3 years ago. The amps continue to sell easily/fast.
I don't have Betas but a friend owned a pair and I'm
familiar with their sound.
I did own RS-1b's which are the preceeding model. They
were also superb, though I think the Beta woofer column
I sold by RS-1b's about three years ago, but they worked
perfectly with the original components.
1/ VAC Avatar Integrated
2/ Any Jadis tube amp
3/ Wadia CD transports and DACs
4/ Audio Physics Virgo
5/ VPI turntables
Just bought a pair of the Rowland Model 6. It is the best amp I have owned to date. Made the Manley 250's sound anemic. Could be the synergy with the Vr-7SE. I took the chance since Jeff Rowland has a high reputation and should be in business awhile
Infinity Cresendo Series (speakers).
Densen DM-10 MK2
Atma Sphere amplifiers / preamplifiers
Audible Illusions preamplifiers
Carver Lightstar / Sunfire amplifiers / preamplifiers / loudspeakers
Classe amplifiers / preamplifiers
Counterpoint amplifiers / preamplifiers (severe reliability concerns)
Jadis amplifiers / preamplifiers / digital
JA Michell GryoDec turntables
Krell amplifiers / preamplifiers
Mark Levinson amplifiers / preamplifiers / digital
McCormack amplifiers / preamplifiers
Jeff Rowland Design Group amplifiers / preamplifiers
Sony ES loudspeakers
Timbre Technology digital
VAC amplifiers / preamplifiers
Atma-Sphere (all), Music Reference RM-9, Electron Kinetics 2, VPI HW-19, Eminent Technology ET-2 and LFT-8, Townshend Audio Rock, London Super Gold, Quad speakers (all ESL's), Magneplanar Tympani-IVa.
Conrad Johnson (any) Krell KSA
I guess I run mostly older equipment and if I felt there were better value today that would provide me what I like I’d be running that:
Audible Illusion M3A
JM Labs Micro Utopia’s
M&K 150 subs.
Thorens Hot Rod150 /Denon a100 sapphire cantilever/Shiabata
Benz Glider M
Thoren TD 850 Hot Rod Benz Ruby 3
both tables run either Audio Mods IV or III
AcousTech Ph1P with op amp upgrade.
My digital is all newer, though, so I won’t bother listing it here.
I also have a pair of Celestion SL6S Hot Rod in my office and beat the snot out of most other office speakers. I recently parted with a fully tweaked out pair of Maggie MG3A s that kicked ars.
Frankly, within price reason, I don’t feel that the date something was made has much to say about its performance, with the exception of digital.