I'd like hear from Albert,Carl,Tubegroover,and the rest of you.
294 responses Add your response
The best system I have ever built is not built yet. Unfortunately, this process is a journey, not a destination. I am very happy right now, so I will lay it out for you. Source: Walker Proscenium Signature, with the Prologue base, and air suspension system. Tonearm: Walker air bearing linear and the Walker Black Gate motor controller. Cartridge: Koetsu Rosewood Platinum Signature. Phono stage: Aesthetix IO, factory custom equipped with dual outboard power supplies. Line stage: Aesthetix Callisto, factory custom equipped with dual outboard power supplies. (This makes a six box, 300 pound preamp with four power cords). Speakers: Soundlab Ultimate 1's with cryogenically treated power supplies (thanks Purist Audio and NASA), Soundlab speakers were factory wired (custom order) with Purist Dominus wire throughout. Amps: (testing right now) The VIVA Aurora 845 SET Triode Mono Blocks, and the Wolcott Presence Mono Blocks with the new high band transformer. Cable: every wire run, single ended and balanced, (and even INSIDE the Io and Callisto) is Purist Audio Dominus or Dominus Radiant Light Source, including all AC cable. For the (occasional) digital session, I use a Sony DVD 7700. There are additional details, such as tube selection, isolation devices and stands, but some other brave souls needs to stick their necks out, and reveal their choices now.
I slowed down the pusuit for perfection several years back and decided instead, to add more stereos to my life. Music everywhere, all the time. I've added stereos in my home office (Audio Refinement Integrated, Oracle Alexandria/Sumiko/Grado Platinum, Dynaco Tubed output CD Player, Aragon D2A MkII DAC, Magnum Dynalb FT11 Tuner, Totem Rokk speakers), work office (Audio Refinement Integrated, Tuner, CD Player, Celestion SL600 speakers), bedroom (NAD L40, B&W LM1 Speakers), garage (NAD7250PE Receiver, NAD513 CD Player, B&W DM302 speakers), and a pool-side system (Carver receiver, Pioneer 6-disc CD Player, Mirage Oasis outdoor speakers). My main rig: Oracle Delphi IV/SME345/Grado Sonata, Audio Research SP14 Preamp, YBA CD Integre CD Player, (2) Classe Audio DR8 amplifiers, Martin Logan Quest Z speakers. This is a very revealing and for the most part enjoyable system, but, I know I need room treatment in the worst way (very live room). There's not much point to changing much in my main rig cuz of the room, and the WAF just ain't there. It's like the old joke "Why is divorce so expensive? Cuz it's worth it!" I chose to avoid divorce, call me whipped. Jeff
I have a Pair of Rogue M 120 Monoblocks,Rogue 66 Preamp,Anthem CD 1,Well Tempered Classsic Turntable Benz Glider,Kenwood KA-8300 Vintage tuner,Coincident Super Conquest Speakers,Coincident CST-I Interconeects on Phono and Cd player.Wireworld Atlantis to amps.Audioquest Double Bi wire 6'run to speakers.I will be adding Coincident Speaker cables 3 foot runs and another Coincident IC to the power amps.This sytem is very musical and for the relativly modest investment it outplays systems i have heard at twice the cost.I also have a HT set up with a Marantz SR 880 And coincident triumph fronts and center channels.I am looking for the right pair of rers and have still not found them.I will be adding a dvd at some time.I am waiting for a unit that will do dvd a and dvd v.
Tubegroover. No, the room is not dedicated, although my wife claims it is. It's our living room. The dimensions are nineteen and a half feet wide, thirty three feet long, and with a ceiling that vaults from eight foot two inches to twelve and a half feet. I have fourteen dedicated AC runs, each with their own 20 Amp breaker and separate (from house) dedicated grounds. There are 6 RPG panels and 4 Tube Traps behind the Soundlab speakers, and the entire right wall is treated with acoustic material. The floor is Granite, and has two heavy imported wool rugs that the sofas rest on. Believe it or not, there is a surround sound system within the stereo as well. It gets fired up on the weekend, I use a Atmasphere mono block for my dialogue channel, Sound Valves for the side and rear channels, and self powered subs. None of this stuff integrates with my two channel system, except when the Soundlabs become the "front" channel for movies. Really a great surround system with all those tubes. (PS, Purist Proteous, even on the surround sound).
Rowland 9Ti's going througha Nakamichi processor, soon to be the new Theta casablanca 2. Main speakers are Avalon Osiris. Center and surrounds are JMLabs Mini-Utopias. Source is a Sony SCD-1 with the digital out going through a Dodson Mk-II DAC with the 24/96 upgrade. Wiring is Cardas neutral reference biwire to the Avalons and Neutral reference IC's. The front end is off a PS 300 with Electroglide PT to the Sony and ESP Essence to the Dodson. Coming soon will be 2 REL Studio subs or Aerial SW12's. haven't made up my mind yet. The cenetr channel is a bridged Classe 150 and the rears are off a Clase 400. I do a lot of 2 channel listening and it sounds great. My TV is a Pioneer Elite 710 HDTV. When we redo our basement, in another 6 months, I plan to get a 3chip DLP projector, run off a Home Theatyre PC. Life is good! David
Like Albert, I am on the same journey and have not built the BEST system. In my life balance pursuits this system does give me special moments with recorded performances. No recorded performance compares to real life experience, period. Still, I am very pleased with what I am currently running in my Living Room. My music system must sound like music and while fitting into using the environment for life's purposes. The best thing is that I have is lots of vinyl that I have collected over thirty-five years, about six thousand records, and a very understanding life partner. Funny thing was that I always took care of them each from day one, my lady and the records. Lucky! I tend to refine the main system and evolve it slowly over time never being much the latest S.O.T.A. hype follower. Not surprisingly, I have a phono only front end consisting of Basis 2500/Graham 2.0 deluxe/ Koetsu Onyx platinum with a VPI AC generator and speed control. All wiring is Audio Note silver z customized with built in Bybee components for AC and Balance tone arm to phono interconnects. My pre-amp is the Aethetix I/o with volume control customized, like Albert's (and thank you-Albert for the suggestion), with 2 power supplies; NOS tubes through out and Bybee devices on internal inputs/outputs; and AC line connections. My Amplifiers are Audio Note Ankuro mono blocks, also highly customized, using 845s with WE 300B drivers with all NOS tubes through out and using Bybee components on internal inputs/outputs and AC line connections. The speakers are Wilson Audio Watt3/Puppy 2 with customized parts, Bybee components wired to each driver and wired through out with (guess) Audio Note silver. You can tell a friend of mine is connected. I won't bore you with all AC power distribution, the stands and vibration tweaking that I have done. Net results are a very musically satisfying system while still maintaining a home environment that we can live in and entertain a wide variety of friends and family. I have learned a lot from others over time and have enjoyed the exchange on site with all of you. Keep on sharing it's fun and remember to keep a sense of humor about this strange hobby.
Altis Centauri Transport, DCS Purcell Upsampler, DCS Elgar Plus DAC, Clearaudio Reference Table, Graham Arm, Clearaudio Discovery Cartridge, VAC Reenaissance Signature Preamp, Wavac HE-833 Mono amps, JM Lab Utopia Speakers, Kharma silver/gold digital, speaker and interconnect cables. Zoethecus Racks, Walker Audio HDL's and Valid Points and Tuning Discs, with Omega Micro Powercords, Audio Prism Foundation III power conditioner for the front end.
The following is my current system. Whether or not it is the most enjoyable is another question I suppose for another thread but it is the best based on the components. It is subject to a lot of upcoming changes brought on by my new high strung mistress the Merlin VSM-SE loudspeakers which have let everyone know whos in charge but IS definitively better than any loudspeaker I have owned and most Ive heard. Room is 132 X 19 X 12-8 vaulted ceiling. This is a multipurpose room or what one might call the family room it is open and the sound is getting better with some added treatments. It is occupied by ARC D-115 Mk2 stock amp and SP-8 Mk1 Revision 3 stock pre-amp. Harmonic Tech truthlink interconnects are used throughout, Analysis Plus Oval 9 cables for speakers are coming, Harmonic Tech Pro 11 power cords which will be upgraded in the future as will the ARC gear to iec connectors with better cords. I am a firm believer in good AC from the source, it makes a big difference. I have 2 dedicated 20 amp circuits with Leviton hospital receptacles and independent ground. which was installed when the house was built. The sources are SOTA Sapphire Turntable Premier MMT arm and various cartridges that have accumulated over the years and a P.S. Audio Ultralink via JVC 1050 CD player. These sources are the oldest part of my system. The SOTA has been with me for 14 years now. It does need upgrading or replacing. I have designed an audio equipment rack which I guess I am going to build since the Italian woodworker from the old school who I have been pestering to do it is just too old and not motivated and I dont have the time for that hobby anymore but . I'm just going to have to find the time. Some of the commercial units are really junk, they rock too much (Bellogetti comes to mind). I talked with Bob the Sound Anchor guy who lives close by but his units although well built are aesthetically an eyesore for my dear wife. There are many changes on the horizon. The sound of the system at present is analog; superb, digital needs to be replaced. Just ordered a Perpetual Technology P-3A, due today, and will probably follow with the P-1A, (room and speaker correction software coming) IF I like the P-3A. This system is transitional in its present state, arent they all? I have spent a bit of time commenting on items that are indirect to the question posed but I have personally found most important in a GREAT audio system - Clean AC, vibration isolation, and room acoustics. The old timers know this but for guys new to this hobby dont overlook it. Changing gear can be much more expensive with less improvement overall.
The system I will list here may have not been state-of-the- art...but it is the system that gave the most musical pleasure. Audio Research CD-2 and Magnum Dynalab MD-108 feed through Wireworld Gold Eclipse III interconnects into a Conrad Johnson ART pre-amplifier feed through Wireworld Gold Eclipse III into a Classe Amplifier (I think it was the CA-300 or CA-400) feed through Nordost SPM Reference speaker bi-wired into Magnepan MG-20 speakers....various vibration isolation devices were used.. as were room acoustics... I have used many components before and after this system...but this one gave the most pleasure!
I agree with most of you out there that our systems as currently configured are somewhere along in the journey to an ultimate goal, which I certainly won't reach till I get the New York Philharmonic or the New Jersey Symphony into my living room. I currently derive a good deal of pleasure out of my current system, which consists of a Basis Ovation/Graham 2.0/Benz Ruby 2 analog front end, with a Walker Motor Drive, Day Sequerra Reference tuner for the few good classical and jazz stations left in the NYC area, Forsell Mk III/dCs Purcell/Audio Logic 2400 digital front end, with a Marantz DVD-18 transport for 24/96 discs, PSAudio P300 for the digital components, Jadis JP80MC preamp, older model tubed and modified by Andy Bowman of Vintage Tube Services (I've heard the IO at length, and find the presentation and overall sound very similar), Jadis JA80's, again 10-year old models modified and tubed with MO Valve KT 88's, their preferred tube, by Andy for 200hz and up, Meitner MTR 101's, recently updated by Ed Meitner, for 200hz on down, and Sforzando JL1 speakers, of which I may be about the only owner (a four piece system with an active crossover, full range down to about 18 hz, designed by Richard Davidson, who some of the oldtimers might recall designed and made, and unfortunately lost his shirt with, the ITC-1 speakers; they have an upward firing midrange, front and back firing tweeters, and separate subs with two 10 inch drivers). Cabling is virtually all Full Spectrum cables, which were made by Ralph Romano and are a very good, high resolution and perhaps a little sweet-sounding cable. The system is not the last word in transparency, high frequency air and in-your-face detail, but is very good at recreating the original soundspace and holographic imaging, gets timbres right, sounds very natural, particularly with classical music, and really can convey the soul of the music well. Bunch of tweaks, but not extensive. The room, as with Mr. Porter, is our living room; I'm fortunate that my wife is a minister and in the forgiveness business. It's only 20x18x10 feet high, so the lower power of the Jadis amps is not a problem; it's an old Victorian, with good plaster walls and enough draperies and furnishings to get rid of reflections without too many room treatments (which is something my wife does draw the line on). Front end components are in a separate roon off of the listening room, which has advantages and disadvantages (like 40 feet of interconnect). Albert, too bad we don't live closer, yours sounds like my kind of system.
Has anyone heard from Carl_eber ??? PLEASE Keep the systems coming, and my sentiments are with yours about the BEST being a matter of taste. That's why I used the words "you've built". Just when you reach that level of musicality something new cross' your path or appears in print and turn out to be real. KEEP 'EM COMING !
Mr. Krell, I feel that because my system isn't as costly as those of many on here, that my credibility will be diminished by revealing everything in my current system, or how few systems I have set up. There are many jerks on here that seek to attack me personally, and I don't feel like laying everything bear anymore. It would mess up your thread to have those jerks gang up on me yet again. Also, I'm not an "audio old timer", and have set up maybe 1/10% as many systems, as someone like Albert Porter. I've only been in the "highend" for 5 years, afterall...This is not to say that I think myself a neophyte, far from it. But as far as setting up dozens of high rez systems, I have not done it. If this makes any of you think lesser of me, so be it. I'm secure in this "hobby" anyway, most assuredly so.
Hi Krellpower1; I've been following this thread with interest. My present system is all digital, and while not quite "State Of The Art", I think it is an excellent "real world" rig. It's taken me 7-8 years to get to this point. This spring and summer, I added dedicated AC and ground systems to 4 Hubbell duplex outlets, and Levinson 37 transport and 360S DAC to my Sonic Frontiers Line 2 pre-amp and McCormack DNA-2DX power amp. Speakers are Vandersteen 3Asigs. For wire, I use Syn. Res. Phase 2 ICs, Syn. Res. Sig. No.2 bi-wired spkr cables, and presently have Syn. Res. Master Couplers on all components. Yes, I like Syn. Res. products, and I intend to try their Reference power cords on my source components. I use a Cardas AES/EBU dig. cable between transport and DAC-- it is less detailed, but more musical than Madrigal's MDC-1 cable. As of now, I think my system has no weaknesses, ie it all works well together. I have 5 ASC tubes in my room, and I'm going to continue to fiddle around with tweaks-- just got two Seismic Sinks. Some might say this system could support better speakers (more expensive?), and I'm seriously considering Vandersteen 5s-- but this whole thing sounds so good that I'm in no hurry (and also broke). Cheers. Craig.
arl you don't need to explain anything to anybody about your system or make any apologies for anything. This isn't about my system is bigger, badder or better than yours, it certainly shouldnt be. My system seems somewhat pedestrian compared to several of the above but I am quite happy with the musical pleasure it gives me and would like to share that with others. Some folks have greater resources than others. Some that do have the resources wouldn't dream of putting in the money or most importantly TIME it takes to assemble a true world class system. Carl your credibility is already established regardless of what your system is (unless it is some low rent mid-fi junk, you're not holding out on us are you? Just kidding really.) You have already revealed part of your system. I know your speakers, amp and CD player and know that you are always playing with different cables. Not a thing wrong your system UNLESS you dont get musical pleasure from it. This goes for anyone else out there as well and Im sure that is the purpose of the post.
I wish that people like Albert and Gerry lived on my block, I would love to hear there systems. I feel as if I am maybe the poorer cousin in terms of system costs. My system is very simple and less costly than many stated above but it is one that gives me much musical satisfaction. My dedicated room is 13'x 23' with 2 dedicated 20 amp outlets. My system consists of a Basis 1400 with a Rega RB 300 and Dynavector 10x4, a Cal Icon with HDCD Powerboss upgrade, Audible Illusions M3A preamp for line source only, Esoteric Audio Research 834P for phono and an Ayre V3 amp. Speakers are Maggie 1.6's. All interconnects are AudioTruth Python and Speaker cables are Bi-Wired Goetrz M12's. Power cables are from Custom Power Cord Company Model 11. My room is filled with tons of books and records and rugs, as of yet I have not felt the need to add much acoustic treatment just a Sonex panel and some Roomtune corner tunes, plenty of VPI bricks, Black Diamond Racing cones, Navcom, a heavly modified Target Stand and a home brew amp stand. At this point I feel I am somewhere on the journey but I'm having so much fun I don't think I care if I ever get there...Best-Gary
Some awesome systems out there guys!!! I wish I won the lottery so I could buy whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted. My current system. Jadis Orchestra Reference integrated amp, crappy CD player(too embarassed to say - my next upgrade), old Sansui tuner(great - performs better than my newer tuners), Coincident Loudspeaker Technology Digital Master/Troubass subwoofers(their interpretation of what Wilson WATT/Puppies SHOULD be), and various silver cabling. Very nice sound. I listen for HOURS upon HOURS. Not metallic, harsh, fatiguing, but warm, liquid, natural, REAL. The women of my house even listen to it(on their own!), but still think I am nuts. I am not yet finished(who is?), hopefully soon...
I think an important point may be lost on some when looking at Albert and Gerry's systems. First of all you don't just go out and BUY a system like theirs. It is quite obvious to me that these systems evolved over years of careful listening and upgrading and finding out what works according to their individual tastes. These systems demonstrate the ultimate of what can be achieved but lets face it, you may be able to copy it but you can't buy the experience, knowledge and personal satisfaction gained by putting it together yourself. For THAT they and some of the others above have my admiration and respect.
Before sharing the contents of my system, pedestrian as it may seem to some, I'd like to add support for the notion that this isn't about "mine's bigger than yours". The real issue is whether one's system delivers the intended levels of enjoyment, right? To that end, give up the list, Carl_Eber. You know as well as anyone that it's not the price of the toys, but how well they're matched and, maybe even more importantly, how lovingly they've been assembled. That said, my best system is the current one and, though still only a few months "new" it's the culmination of several years of research and auditioning. Needless to say, I'm quite proud of it. Here's the (almost embarrassing when compared to what others have) list: Amp - McCormack DNA-1 w/SMc Audio's Rev. "B" upgrade, Preamp - Sonic Frontiers Line 1, Source - CAL Alpha/Delta DAC and transport, Speakers - Hales Revelation Threes, Power cords - BMI Majik throughout, Cables - AP Oval Nines, Digital IC - Illuminati D-60, and ICs - HT Pro-Silways throughout. Next addition: power conditioner, vibration isolation and a tube roll. Then I'll be done. Right...?
To that end, nope, don't think I will, sorry. The original question was "what's the best system you've ever built?"...Not, what's in the current one you have now, anyway. Whether the guy intended it, or not, I interpret it as a question meant for those who have set up many very high rez systems over the years. I said that I have not done so many yet, and also feel that most of you have not. That's the way I interpret it, that's the way I answer it...but I'm also not interested in running on about what's in my system, and so I choose not to reveal it. It's not that I'm being overly secretive, it's just that it's not important to me, that everyone know. So just listen to yours, and be happy...you know you will anyway.
I have built a few systems, mostly mid-fi because of the budget others were working with (i.e., parents & friends). They wanted certain capabilities but didn't want to shell out the $$$. My system has been a "work-in-progress" as it sounds like others are too. That's half the fun, right? I have heard high $$$ systems, some that I loved and others that I liked. I guess you can equate it to something like - do you prefer the sound of a guitar or a piano? Both can be expertly constructed and expensive but are designed for different types of music. The analogy here is that it depends on the taste of the individual and the music they prefer - or mostly listen to (hope that makes sense). My current system has evolved over the last 15 years and, until I get a substantial raise, it will continue to evolve modestly. I have performed just about every tweak I can to extract the maximum performance from the equipment. Alas, just about every piece of gear though is under $2K retail though. I know where I'd like to be and am sure I will get there some day but I do enjoy my current set-up. I would list all my gear but this post is long enough already! BTW: I've had the pleasure of listening to Albert Porter's system and it IS awesome! I will say that it is his knowledge, experience and hours of dedication that has gotten it to sound so good!
I think it's also kind of interesting to see how good a system you can put together on a limited budget. To give a little hope to those here who can't spend as much as a Mercedes on audio, I'll put my system out there. It's not the last word in resolution, but it sounds pretty nice and all was purchased second hand. Vandersteen 2ce with stands (retail 1400, I got them for $450,) Radio Shack 10 gauge (pennies), Aragon 24K preamp ($399), Dyanco ST-70 ($300 on Ebay) running highs, Marchand XM26 ($199 Kit form) Tube Active Crossover, Perreaux P2150 (over $2000 grand new, got it for $575) running bass, And Sean here on this website set me up with some spectacular interconnects for only $15 bucks each pair...they were so good I ditched my more expensive pair. Cheap Nak CD4 on source...that's kind of embarrassing, but I'll get something better soon. So there you go, a pretty damn good system for about $1800...you can't get a fancy rack system at Circuit City for that anymore.
Carl, Not to out you or anything but let me guess from memory... Resolution CD player, Rogue 88 amps, Krell KAV 300i amp, VPI turntable (or was it Sota), and MIT terminator 2 cables, MIT interconnects. For the love of me, I can't remember your preamp...perhaps also a Krell? See, you just have a very noticable presence on Audiogon...and I've got a pretty good memory. How accurate was I?
Not very accurate at all, no, and I forget your real name, Isabre? I like to know who I'm talking to, just a matter of a thing called honor, is all........And like I said, I'm more interested in hearing from those that have put many true world class systems together. In this thread, the rest is irrelevant to me. I seek the knowledge I do not yet possess, the rest is very boring. When someone says "BEST", then let's talk the good stuff. Since I haven't done systems over $100,000 retail, I'd just as soon hear from those who have. And please, no more blather about how money doesn't always determine performance...that may be, but it essentially does, when you're talking world class...and as long as you have the experience to make use of it. Almost none of us here, do. That's all I'm saying...and that's why it's fun to read the magazines, because they get to set up and use the stuff, without buying it. We all wish we could do that, perhaps...
I swear audiogon has been taken over by a bunch of 15 year old boom box,wanna be high-enders.I can't believe Carl is being taunted to "give it up" sounds like 15 year old crap speech to me.Then when Carl posts his most acceptable reply as to why he wants to stay quiet on this topic another 15 year old BOZZO decides he is going to reveal Carl's system to all the world!!(OH NO)!! Besides having his system confused,what exactly are you teens attempting to accomplish? This should be real good!
Having come to the logical conclusion that I'm one of those "15 year-olds" that asked Carl to describe his system, here's the response you requested, David99. "Having read numerous interesting submissions to this board by Carl_eber, but with no recall of having seen a list of what is in his system I was hoping to have my curiousity sated." Is that "real good" enough for you? In return, please share with us what you expected to accomplish by being so unnecessarily insulting? Has Audiogon been taken over by crotchity old trolls pretending to be audiophiles?
Why don't you come to the logical conclusion that you don't need to discuss me or my system? Why does this keep happening to me? As someone has told me recently, in another context, "Ohh, I never seen the like". I hate to be the cause of yet another thread being messed up, and would not have initially posted a response here, were it not for the originator asking where I was. My interest is usually to share some knowledge or experience I have had, with someone that might look to me like they need it. And when everything turns philosophical, or, when it's "I heard this component this way...you heard it that way", it all goes out the window. Sometimes that's fun, but mostly it wastes my time, and doesn't really help anybody. I apologize for my part in causing it, yet again...
This has been a nice thread, with a reasonable questions and answers about equipment. Like it or not, the equipment is necessary for the sound we want, until we can all sing and play like every artist we admire. Lets enjoy reading the listings of all the components everyone has put together. I have heard systems that were very inexpensive (like Issabre), that made you want to sit and enjoy the music all night. I have heard systems at the Consumer Electronic Show that cost more than my house, and I would not enter the room, as I was disgusted from the hallway. This site is and should always be about learning from each other. Anything in my system that works well, I took from somewhere else! Sharing is part of the art of this hobby, lets share ideas, stand firm for what we believe in, explain and educate why you believe it is the truth, and bring ourself and others up in the process. Everyone has important things to offer. How many times has a stranger come and listened (or your own child?) and offered a tidbit that caused you to re evaluate what you have done. The bottom line is, no person has all the answers, the more we know, the better shot we've got at making it better....it will never be perfect, but trying is (or at least should be) fun.
I think we all should not look at this as a competition. Like Albert said, money is not the determining factor. To me, it's the way a person puts a system together, synergy. Some people can do it right the first time, some people even get it wrong the 100th time. Carl_eber, don't ever get down. I read your posts all the time. You provide me with a lot of food for thought. I respect you, your ideas, your equipment, your philosophy. I don't care if you own a Krell or a Sanyo, I KNOW you get it. I always talk about Jolida integrateds. Only because my friends(a lot of musicians) come to me hoping for better sound, and don't have $2500. I tell them to buy one, we upgrade the tubes/power cord, and they can't believe they did this for less than $1000. They always say it sounds just like the sound they got in the studio when they mixed it. Likewise I visited the big high end dealer in this area who has a one page ad in Stereophile each month. And was drawn into the loudness of their main room. There, they had $100K of equipment blaring. Metallic, shrill, unnatural, and terrible. Women are more sensitive to this, and quickly left the room. I went to look at the equipment, to see what it was. The salesman later asked me if that was the best sound I have EVER heard. I didn't want to say, but my fiance' was not as shy. She said it was horrible(and used all the adjectives I just mentioned), and that the system I put together for $4K was the no contest winner. The guy obviously thought she was nuts, but she WAS correct. It's the sum of the parts that counts. Hopefully the whole is greater(that's what makes a good audiophile to me), and not less than the sum of those parts.
I agree. This is no contest. And Carl, I apologize, I wasn't trying to reveal anything that you haven't already talked about her on the forum. I was just trying to have a little fun. Besides, you and Garfish Albert and the rest are regular participants. I think it's pretty normal that by now we know at least a little about the other guys systems. It means that we respect their choices and opinions and have remembered about what they've said on certain topics. That's what makes it an online community...kind of like seeing the guys at work and asking "how are the kids." I've been shopping for some MIT speaker cables lately because of your rave reviews on them (among others). So don't take offense.
Back in the day, when I was but a youth, I put together the following system. The cartridge was the Shure IV and it was fitted in a Mitsubishi LV5 (the one with the linear tracking arm). The pre/power amps were Luxmans. I believe the preamp was named C1000. It had both MM and MC inputs with front panel loading setting. The tone controls had multiple turnover points and it had a tilt control (similar to the Quad preamps). The power amp had big analog meters; they were rated for 120wpc. The speakers were the Bose 901s (when you're young why settle for anything less than the best?). However, what really made the system special were the dbx expander and the Audio Control equalizer (the upscale model with the RTA and calibrated microphone). Interconnects were whatever came in the box, however, I did eventually upgrade the speaker cable to a very early Monster Cable product. Sound quality -- I really don't remember, but it did go loud. And yes, it impressed the women! Am I ashamed that I had this system? Not for a second. It gave me (and my friends) alot of pleasure. I'm older now and much, much wiser.
I'll try to calm down some, then..."Back in the day", my brother and I built a lot of speaker cabinets out of plywood. They filled his bedroom. We built some for me about 11 years ago, and they now have Electrovoice 1000 watt woofers, and Eminence compression drivers. We've put them outside a few times, and played them very loud. That was very fun, and a part of me will always want to do that. I want to have a small stage firing over the swimming pool in the backyard of my dream house someday, and have bands come over and play...and of course several dedicated "highend" listening rooms and home theaters inside the house, as well. According to a few outspoken contributors to this forum, most any woman I marry in the future will be all to happy to see me do this...I can't wait...