Iamcrazy, Didn't you just get more than 20 answers to this question? There are people who like to do it, and people who just want to talk about it. Which one are you?
I did get a lot of response for the last post, here is the narowed down list. As you well know after a few days people stop posting, so I created a new one for the upgraded list. I am actually looking to buy an integrated for about $1000 and I live in an audio wasteland (Memphis tn) so i have to rely on the advise from these posts. so to anwser your question, I am not all talk. I am going to buy the winner of the showdown.
Eric.....who plans on listening to the "winner"? You?...or the people who answer your thread? I can see why you would want to hear from people who have experienced some reliability issues with some of the products on your list but when it comes down to the sonics, only you can be sure if you can live with it.....Peace, Deano
The Aronov Audio LS-960i is excellent, and although should run around $1600, used, there was one listed by JB Audio for $1250. This is a choice that does not have to be gotten rid of as you upgrade the rest of your components. More along the line of "best integrated." I have owned one for years, and it is a natural, and musical "big iron" tube component that requires no adjustments, although a tube design. I have never had anyone fail to be impressed when they heard it in my system, but it's too bad we can't always hear for ourselves every component before we buy it used on Audiogon. So, there is always some leap of faith involved, in exchange for getting more than we can really afford.
The google search showed JB's phone as (518)526-6925. And he accepts best offers, if you are ready to really buy.To reach Aronov Audio website one has to enter their name in search engine, google.com.
Frank Van Alstine's OmegaStar 200EX Integrated Amp is an excellent unit, but is currently out of production. The only problem was it cost too much to produce and was not profitable for him to build. The upgraded EX version has output stage similar to that used in the Fet Valve amplifiers. Frank did have a demo OmegaStar 200 (not EX) available last month for around $800.