Downunder,with regards to your "amazement" regarding my still being "down"....Some day I'll spill the whole story to you,off-line.It's amazing I have any enthusiasm,still.
Just kidding about the vino,but do love the stuff.Yes,the 16 dollar stuff(in U.S.)is about as good a Shiraz as I've tasted,but with the economy as it is(I'm really scared for my business interests,but will probably be OK)I've ben exploring the "El-Cheapo" vintages.Quite enjoyable,to be honest.....Dulls the emotion of being peeved at some supposedly well respected industry folks,who were instrumental in my "not" having sound...STILL!!
The Phantom(as far as I am concerned)"says" series II on the tube itself.Bob IS a class act,and a damn nice guy(his choice in some dealers sort of stinks,though).
I did get a new IC-70 which appears to be a bit different than the original.Bob gave it to me,along with the new arm as an even trade for my old cable,due to "stuff".I do like the guy,and trust his judgements.He's been absolutely "on the money" regarding all "performance observations" over time,so I'm not too worried,but...
If you actually think I could care less about the itty bitty tid-bits that even I am guilty of bloviating about,after such a rediculously long/dreadful/and annoying series of events,you don't "truly" know the real me.
This Audiogon stuff,is simply fun,but I think in reality I'm not as "wacky" or obsessed as I appear here(I hope).At least I hope so,because I just want to get back to my old way of enjoying the "listening" again.Simple as that!!
The week-end family brunch and Lp collecting in Princeton,and the lazy afternoons of hearing my most recent acquisitions."Then", a nice Rock Bare!I don't think that's asking too much,and I really miss that!
I'm hoping in about two weeks,or I may be going back to collecting acoustic guitars again(my Martin collection financed my system,in the early days)....Not such a bad fall back plan. -:)
What I SO like about this hobby,is developing a wide ranging music collection.Carefully culled over many years,and in a varied way of going about getting "hard to find" gems.
I've even got some of Andre Previn's old private LP's.He sold a collection to my LP emporium,so I scored some choice discs.EMI's!The first pressings of him conducting some superb works.I'd walked in,just as the discs went out,so the timing was quite good....
Alot of other gems I've managed to stash away through associations with some wonderful "collectors" of LP's.I call these fellows "The Viceroys of Vinyl".The stuff we read about regarding the hardware side,here on Audiogon,is mirrored by these guys,on the software side.A nice balance for me.....SO.....
THIS is why I am "so" adamant about staying focused on getting past my annoying issues.I've not been able to rely on some "highly regarded" industry folks,and I can now understand why the "High End" is not a particularly good investment,from a hobby perspective.
One lousy problem can lead to months of waiting.Two problems and fagedaboutit!You want "real" support,after spending big money? Ha!
One Audiogoner E-mailed me,stating I should have two systems....Are you kidding me,I thought?The sentiment was appreciated,but I'd prefer to put the lions share of my money into my main set-up.That way you have a better system over-all.
Anyway(I know I'm getting long)the main point about the LP "thing".....
I just LOVE having a "big/varied" music collection,with SO much different stuff.I LOVE pulling "out of the ordinary LP's" from my walls and walls of music and falling "into" them,which at times "amaze"!All of the instrumental complexities,and especially when something new,winds up "blowing me away".I "had" the system sounding amazing,before I started to go through my update phase.Got side tracked,but I hope I'm back soon,because I've still been collecting some "wild" stuff.I've alrrady got the "normal" fare.Need to keep feeding the ear,with "new/different"!
Hope you understand,'cause it's the music that does it! -:)
Sorry for the length,and best wishes.