When the wife likes your system and spends countless hours listening with you, you have found musical bliss. Glad ya made it over the mountain.
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Appreciate your comments, and outside of those who have posted before, if there are any other STL owners out there, please, please post your comments - it will benefit Albert and everyone else here.
I'm on the other side of the continent and still have not purchased one of Albert's products, but for the last year or year and a half have frequented his site and exchanged many an email back and forth with Albert, but still haven't 'taken the plunge' and given one of his products a try despite the many a happy customer that do exist, though obviously a much smaller bunch than those that crowd around other products.
I've been tempted by many of his products, whether its a phono stage, preamplifier, amplifier, or the thing of Albert's that really, really tempts me is Albert's DAC designs..
I have a feeling that whether you were putting together an budget system or extremely high end system, that you'll find some amazing magic in his work -- at least this is what everyone who has commented in the past has found. Apparently his absolutely cheapest preamplifier, I believe the one you have, people have put up against some rather pricey units and felt that it squashed them...
Only problem with that sort of performance is it makes people wonder about every unit above that one....and then your budget system is no longer at the bottom end of the chain....but then again, maybe your happiness with your system has increased as well as your new budget.
One thing I would appreciate -- whether its a comparison to what you were listening on before, a comment of what speakers you're matching them to, or if you get a chance to do comparisons to anytihng else -- please post anything you can... If this is a 'first system' per se, and you don't think its warranted to post SystemA vs. SystemB, any descriptions simply in how music has changed for you, or how the system is different from what you've heard elsewhere is appreciated.. Based on what I can surmise of your listening tastes from other threads, this provides me additional confidence is giving one of his products a shot...
Also, did you buy the 1.5w amplifier to mate to speakers or headphones? If speakers, I would _love_ to hear your thoughts...
I'm hopefully making a nice little vacation to the Northwest this summer, and it will without a doubt include a visit to Albert to stop in and say Hello, hear some toys, and potentially scrap my luggage limit for clothes to be replaced by some beautiful equipment. :-)
Thank you Sogood51. It has taken me 5 months to get here, but it was worth it.
Cjr88- Thank you as well for posting a reply here. I wasn't going to put this on here as I was afraid of the bashing one gets from time to time, but so far so good and I thank both of you for that. To answer your questions, this system replaced an Anthem Pre1 preamp and B&K st2140 which I used for the top half and an Adcom GFA555 11 for the low end. IC'S are from Signal Cable ( Analog 1) and speaker cables are from Heartlandcables.com . Speakers are Klipsch KLF-30'S.
The 6AS7G amp is used for the high frequency only and has a HPF filter switch, so if one wanted to use it full range with a pair of bookshelf speakers they could. I actually ran the small amp full range on the Klipschs and it did a fantastic job, granted bass was not there but what do you expect from an amp with only 1.5 wpc?? Vocals were clean, clear and was plenty loud enough.
The 6AS7G and the HP-100 have volume controls on them, if one wants to "add" or "subtract" something to the music they can by the way of that. Or, if one wanted to bypass the pre-amp and go directly to the cd-player you can go that way. So expensive cables are not needed and Albert will tell you the same thing.
Right now the system is down, as I dropped one of the 6AS7G tubes on the tile floor and it didnt make it. But this let me order a brand new set of tubes for all the amps and should make things even better once they get here.
While I was on the "quest", I did email some "name brand" companies about there products, never a response from them, and have found out from reading the forums here, that they have very poor customer service. I am glad with the choice I have made and would do it all over again if I had to.
As far as money goes, I am not the upper management type, I am just your average Joe. Therefore, when I purchase something, a lot of thought has to go into this as it takes me a while to collect all the funds.
I hope that I was able to answer all your questions, and if not please email me.
It is always nice to read about someone that is happy with their system, is able to enjoy the system with other members of their family and received great treatment / customer support from the company that they were working with.
Having said that, i would not really call this a "review" so much as it is a comment about customer service / product support. Is it possible to list the strengths / weaknesses of the products as compared to what you used to have ? This might give those folks interested in such products a better idea as to what to expect out of them in terms of sonics, etc...
Other than that, keep enjoying what you've got and don't worry about what anyone else says. If you are happy with what you have, that is all that counts. There are people that visit this site that have spent what amounts to just a bit under the National Debt that still aren't happy with their systems. I think that says a lot about this "hobby" and the various approaches that one can take to system building. : ) Sean