All self respecting audiophiles should have something Vintage in their main rig.
If that's the case,I'm glad I'm not a self respecting audiophile!!
I am one of those with a great deal of reverence for classic high quality vintage gear, and having extensive experience with many such pieces I can attest to how well they can perform, if in good condition.
Arbitrarily defining "vintage" as older than 1980, my main system presently includes:
1)A ca. 1954 REL (Radio Engineering Laboratories) "Precedent" FM tuner, with a ca. 1960 H. H. Scott LM35 Multiplex Adapter to decode the stereo.
It is by far the best performing of many tuners I have had, including two Marantz 10B's, a McIntosh MR71, a Carver TX11, and numerous Scott and Fisher units.
2)A Mark Levinson ML1 preamp, ca. 1977, which I use as my phono stage, accessed via its tape out jacks.
I have nearly all vintage gear.
Power amp: Dynaco ST 70 with Sound Valves input board (with solen coupling caps) modified by Tom Tutay of Transition Audio Design. I have owned it over 12 years and I can't part ways with it. I have tried several new amps both solid state and tube and stay with my ST70.
VanAlstine Super PAS 3si preamp also modified by Tom Tutay.
I can only tell you in stock form it was good but now it's great. No special caps but no where near stock any more. It's quiet, refined and just plain musical.
Systemdek IV turntable w 12 pound platter, circa (1988 to 1992) with Rega RB600 and Audio Technica OC9 MLII LO cart. I have a newly installed cork platter mat and it's very interesting. This is not the IIx or 2X900 or glass platter versions. They are rare and I purchased mine NOS about 4 years ago.
Arcam DV78 with Scott Nixon Tube Dac and a North Hills Transformer between DAC and DVD Player. Wow! Thanks JB for the tip and advice.
Spica TC 60's (Tri-Wired) with a pair of Dali Suite 1.2 subs. I haven't listened to my TC50's in a couple years.
Thanks JB for the tri-wire advice too.
I have tried many pieces of new gear and it has yet to replace my trusty vintage gear. And oh yes, I have been looking for replacements.
I'm pretty much all vintage:
Micro Seiki MR-711 DD table with MA-202L arm
Gray ST-33 table with Papst motor and ESL S-2000 arm
Russco Cue Master idler drive table with Micro Seiki B-77 MKll arm in rolling studio base
Denon DP3000 table in white ash base with Grace 707 arm.
Nivico idler drive table
Logic Tempo "E" table with Logic Datum arm
Shure V15Vmr, Shure V15lllhe, Denon DL103D, Denon DL103, Supex 900 Super E+, ADC XLM MK2 improved, various Grados, and Audio Technicas
Stromberg Carlson ASR-433 EL84 12wpc integrated.
Dynaco PAS3 preamp
Two Dyna 70s, one being rebuilt
Heath mono tuner, two Heath tube multiplexes
Klipsh Forte speakers
Pioneer CSX-99 (I think that's the number) speakers. Who puts a 15" woofer in a bookshelf speaker? Please don't answer that.
i just wish i still had some of my old Lafayette catalogs so i could look at all of the pictures and descriptions of vintage gear. when you're 15 yo even $500 for a Reel-to-Reel (or maybe a Crown international deck for $1500!) seemed so out of reach... and the quality level of the receivers and turntables were SO much better than the TV-Stereo consoles that were selling at department stores.
but STILL i could stare at the pictures for hours on end.
FINALLY with all of my nagging and whining (and by the time i was in high-school) my Father bought a Fisher Stereo Compact Receiver-Turntable with a pair of 10" two-way speakers. even with just 28W/CH i thought it sounded wonderful. and because he had pretty good taste he started bringing home some terrific jazz and classical alblums- Beethoven, Sarah Vaughn, Dave Brubeck. (i still wasn't satisfied until i added some Led Zeppelin and Jimi Hendrix, etc.) BUT i will NEVER FORGET how much i enjoyed EVERY MINUTE of listening to FM Radio and Vinyl- maybe even more than i do now...
Yamaha MX-1000U, CX-1000U, EQ 1000U. All with remote control units. This amp and preamp are incredible STILL. I don't use the EQ much with exception with some of the redbook cd's. In perfect condition.
Yamaha CR 1020. Wonderful unit. Some recent problems with the volume control. Hoping to find a way to fix that.
McIntosh XR-7 loudspeakers (4) with the model #107 Mac equalizer. Also a pair of XR-5s. JBL L65s. All in pristine condition. The Macs blow the JBLs away but I use them in different systems.
I also own a vintage auto as a seasonal car but that's another topic.
Vintage can be fun if one chooses wisely and takes care of it.
Dependent on what you call vintage -- I have either one or three items in my setup.
1 for sure -- a Revox A77 Mk III with a WIRED remote -- yes -- like twenty feet of cable to the remote box.
2 optional -- a 90's vintage Muse Model 2+ DAC and an Audio Alchemy DTI Pro32. These guys are to pull the HDCD stuff off as well as doing what they do best -- work.