What did your system look like 30 years ago?

As best as I can recall, this is what I had

Magnepan MG1.4 speakers; Rega Planar 3 turntable with a Linn K9 cartridge; CAL Icon CD player;  Adcom GTP500 II tuner/preamp; Adcom GFA545 amp

I still have my Zerostat which I bought in the 80's-
circa 1990 - was living in downtown san francisco in our first real house


ariston rd11-s tt w/ infinity black widow arm & signet oc9
sony cdp 707 es
conrad johnson pv12
roger mojedski musical reference rm9-ii amp
aragon 4004 mk2
magneplanar mgiii-a’s or proac response 3’s
Acoustat Model 6 (their statement speaker, basically 2 pairs of stacked 3 + 3’s.)
VPI Junior with Grado TMZ
2 Moscode 300 Amps

Quad USA 63's
Threshold SA3
Oracle TT
Benz Glider
Accuphase T100 Tuner
Acoustat Model 4s.
ARC Classic 60
Classic Well-Tempered TT. 
Tandberg 310 Cassette deck. 
Scott tuner
Rowland consonance preamp
kinergetics KBA 75 amp
mirage m3 speakers
some $500 CD player TAS liked 
This is exactly what it looked like 16 years ago in 2004 https://www.theanalogdept.com/c_miller.htm
30 years ago would be 1991. That was the year I bought my current home, but at the end of the year. In January I was living in a 800 sq ft 2BR condo. The "living room" was more like a rectangular "living space" with kitchen at one end, then dinner table, and "living room" with a sliding glass door at the end opposite the kitchen. 

The system was your typical rack thing with my trusty 1974 Kenwood KA-8004 integrated amp driving 1974 JBL L25 Jubal. Yellow and orange, in case you were wondering. There was a JVC HiFi VCR, lamp cord, patch cords, and the one SOTA feature was the hard wired power cords. 

That's a joke, son.  

There was also a Technics SL-1700 DD turntable, but in this living situation that was stored away in a box. My listening was all MTV TV and HiFi VCR. Had CDs but no CD player. What I did was lug my VCR to a friend, dub CDs to tape, listen to tape.  

Now if you had asked about 20 years ago, how I wish there were pics of that! Imagine the current listening room above, only no paint, no sheetrock even, just house wrap, with an old recycled plank of wood across cinder blocks. My first upgrade from the Kenwood, McCormack DNA1, went on that plank. Oh how I wish I had pictures of that!

Like this in 1980 college dorm room


~4th revision to my first “good” system.

Hitachi sr-804 Class G receiver
philips 312 table probably an Ortofon cart of some sort back then. Maybe Audio Technica or Goldring.
Aiwa ad6550 cassette
Audio Control EQ
dbx 118
Discwasher and Zerostat
I think those speakers are my Ohm Ls that I refurbed a few years back and still use but could be my roommates larger Ohm C2s...not sure.

i remember my mirage m3si's!  lovely speaker unique big sound solid bass... 

and esl63's... still have em... two pair actually... forever speakers...(they have just been joined by many others LOL)
Goldmund Studio turntable with T3 tonearm (T3F I think)
Denon DL-103 cartridge
Audio Research SP-11 Preamp
Spectral CD Player (I think the SDR-1000 SL)
Cello Audio Palette
Krell MDA-300 monoblocks
Duntech Sovereign speakers
30 years ago I had one of those spinning things that hung over my crib.  It played nursey rhymes.  Sound quality was mediocre at best, but I enjoyed it.  Helped me sleep.

why is youth wasted on the young?


have you upgraded? classic gear can sound pretty decent! 😊
Ahh yea MC how did I forget to list those?
Resonators....good description! We resonated quite a bit in those days.  Hifi pioneers ...  over the next hill we’d be home. 
Pink Trangle Export, GTI status in 1992
Alphason HR100S, ATOC9, ARC SP9MKII, DENON POA6600 monoblocks, TDL Studio 2, AKAI GFX91. Straightwire Maestro cabling. No fancy powerstrips or dedicated lines or special power cables. Just a Sound organisation rack for turntable and pre. Loved that system. 1993 mistakes took place.

NAD , integrated amp.  Polk monitors, Denon CD player, generic RCAs and speaker cables
JVC boombox with detachable speakers, dual cassette, high-speed dubbing, and equalizer. Totally badass for a teenager.
I had just sold off my turntable.  I had got my first floorstanding speakers , some Polk Audio things that were about a 3 meters high and a foot wide, a 14 bit Sony CDP, a Carver Pre Amp Tuner, and an SAE two channel power amp
Tandberg TR2080 receiver, Tandberg (?) cassette deck, B&O 4002 turntable, Canton LE900 speakers.
My first high end system

Audio Research sp8
cary slim 70 monoblocks
denon 3560 cd modified by Stan warren
audioquest diamond ic
Homemade speakers from north creek music with 10g music coils I believed they were called
NAD 3240 integrated
DCM Timeframe 400
Magnavox CDB650 cdp
Monster Cable ICs & speaker cables
Phase Linear 400 amp
Phase Linear 2000 preamp
Epicure Omin Directional speakers
Revox A77 Reel to Reel Swiss model
Empire TT 698
I was in the Army in the 70s and GIs were able to purchase gear for 1/4 of the price. It was crazy! It was a lot of fun! Not the Army part! If I remember correctly the A77 was under 500.00! Brand spanking new. I was 19 years old and buying all this high end gear! In the mid to late seventies this was top shelf gear.
1990 was before I began my high end journey.

30 years ago, my system was 20 years old.

Benjamin Miracord 50H record player with Shure V-15 Type 2 Improved Cartridge
Acoustic Research Tuner
Phase Linear 2000 Preamp
Adcom GFA 1 Amp
Rectiliear III (High Boys) Speakers
Cheapest Interconnects and Lamp Cord
1990 was before I began my high end journey.

30 years ago, my system was 20 years old.

Mathlexic? Or is it more of a logic thing?

I saw some new model turntable with similar little touch sensor buttons like the old Philips 312.  Don’t remember the model.  Anyone know?
VPI HW-19 Mklll, don't recall the low price MC cartridge
ARC SP 9 Mk. lll
ARC Classic 60
Thiel CS-3.5

Same system today, though I upgraded Audioquest and FMS wire to MIT 330 interconnects and MH 750 speaker wire. 
Also added a Grado Sonata MI cartridge
Why mess with a great synergy? 
Thanks to Steve Bauman wherever you are!
@millercarbon -- "Mathlexic? Or is it more of a logic thing?"

Was this confusing for you?  Something you didn't understand or agree with?
MCS receiver that weighed a ton, powering maggies up front
jvc amp used for EV rear speakers
yamaha ASP subs X 2
Technics DD LT table with shure m97HE cart
sony CD
KLH impulse noise reducer and hiss reducer
Optonica RP3636 turntable with Signet 5 cartridge
NAD 3020 
Polk Monitor7b
Discwasher brush and Zerostat

I still have the 45lb Optonica in its original box.  The pseudo granite plinth has survived a lot of moves.  Polks were in storage also until last month when they were gifted to a budding music lover.  Bought the entire system new in ‘78

Sonograph SG-3 TT, Premier MMT tonearm, Talsiman cartridge
Carver CD player with tube output stage
B&K Pro 10 preamp
B&K St140 amplifier
Vandersteen Model 2 speakers
Monster Cable Reference interconnects
AQ Speaker cables

Still have the TT and arm.

Just curious ... Like Mesch, are any of you still using any of that equipment from thirty years ago in your main system? My Classic Well Tempered turntable is still going strong. With all of the mods that have been done to it, it stays right up there with the big boys.

Just curious ... Like Mesch, are any of you still using any of that equipment from thirty years ago in your main system? My Classic Well Tempered turntable is still going strong. With all of the mods that have been done to it, it stays right up there with the big boys.
Naw. I gave away the record player to a buddy who had an old midfi system. And the Rectilinears were thrown out after the drivers started failing. But I’ve kept the electronics in storage.
Fried C/3L with Fried Subs, Aragon Amp (4004) and Pre 24K ?), Thorens 321 TT...friend has the Thorens and it's going great,. wish I could have kept the C/3L

Surprisingly (to me), my first speakers surrounds decomposed, amplifier’s lights and one meter died, volume knob started acting up, but turntable is, as I write this, running like the first day. They do not make them like they used to. Or do they?
Was in my Naim phase then--62/HiCap/140 driving Proac Tablettes. Had either a VPI HW-19 with an Alphason HRS-100 and a Garrott P-77 or a Townshend Rock with a Rega RB-300 and an AT MM cartridge--can't remember. Digital was probably a Rotel RCD-855 or still my Meridian MCD. Long time ago........
I'm not that old, I was 10 30 years ago. But 20 years ago..

McIntosh C34v. Preamp
Mcintosh mc7300 x2 (bridged) 
Mcintosh Mcd7005  cd playerYamaha NS-2000
Yamaha NS-1000

I still use the amps to this day and have gone back to the Yamahas every few months. But I still have every piece of this setup, with the boxes and crates. 

Post removed 
Pioneer Elite Receiver. Heavy piece of electronics!
Sony ES CD player.  5 CD Carousel 
Def Tech BP10. Blown away by the bipolar impact on soundstage.  Wall of sound. 
linn table ,magnepan arm,magnepan mg3 ,Conrad Johnson pre and power ,somewhere around then I got a pioneer elite cd ,velodyne subs .I also had a nakamichi reel ,ADS and DCM speaker changes around that time among luxman, tandberg and denon gear 
My Infinity IRS Betas looked identical to how they do today.....like new.
My Linn Sondek ...same...like new 30 yrs ago and today
My Mark Levinson 23's as well....like new.
Only piece not the same....went up one number ....Audio Research 6B replaced by a Klyne 7.

Wow.  Time goes by fast.

This has turned into my wife's set-up as I have been relocated to the basement....with much sweeter system but with much lower WAF.
Kenwood 8100 integrated amp (the nice silver one)
Kenwood tuner (matched the amp)
Kenwood cassette deck (matched the amp)
Thorens 145 turntable with Stanton 681E cartridge
Bose 301 speakers (version 1 which I bought the day they first went on sale.

The amp/tuner/deck just got sold two years ago, still in perfect working condition (but had long ceased to be my primary kit)

The turntable I still use but it was refurbished and sports a Grado Prestige Gold now.

After coming to my senses, the Bose speakers had been relegated to garage use and Infinite Slope .6’s took their place.

PS I also still have my Zerostat, Dustbuster, Watts Dust Bug and other assorted vinyl gear which gets used too!  Good times!

In 1990, the system I have now was the system I had then: Nakamichi 410 preamp, Quad 405 power amp, NAD CD player (currently on my 3rd NAD CD), Thorens 166 mk2 table but married to a Denon 103 cartridge instead of the Sumiko blue point #2 I have now. Speakers? The venerable ADS 1230s, still going strong since 1983. 
Magnepan MG-1c, Kyocera A-710, Rotel RP 850, JVC XL-Z1050TN.  Still have all except for JVC and used in a secondary system for nostalgic purposes!  It's been a long journey since then.
What fun to remember

Speakers: JSE Infinite Slope, Model II. The only speakers I heard at audio shows I liked as much as the ones I had and use now. They were/are the most accurate speakers I ever owned.

Preamp and Amp: McIntosh SS C28; McIntosh SS MC2250.

TT, none, solidly in the ’cd’s perfect forever’ world. (Thorens TD124/SMe on a shelf downstairs).

CD: Onyko, dual matched burr brown processors

Cassette: Onkyo, their high end dual deck. Prior to CD I made lots of recordings from LP’s, now played them and made Cassettes to give away from CDs

8 Track. Just kept it, it was a gift from Columbia House, I had designed their offices.

R2R: vintage 2 Track Stereo with 2 Track Stereo Tapes (no 4 track yet)

Equipment Rack: Same one I have now


Then: Plants only on top of the Rack (I promised Donna she could have the top for plants when we bought the rack).
All equipment on 2 shelves below, a bit inconvenient, but
Speakers in the same corners as now.
On 4 wheels as per OEM design. Easy to adjust, push back when big party. Changed to 3 wheels, more weight per wheel.
Current speakers, even heavier, 3 wheels, hard to move even on wheels.

Location Now: to keep my word, but get 4 pieces stacked on the top shelf, I bought some trays, put felt on the bottom, put them on top of equipment, I still do that. Gotta trust her. I keep one tray of plants on top of cassette that doesn’t move, and one tray that stays/moves from the TT when current 4 track R2R in use, moves to R2R when TT in use.
New deep glass shelf for JVC big plinth.

How many of you would trust the wifey to water plants on your equipment?

Plants can be seen here



Are those Grolsch bottles? They look darker than the Green ones, did they make a dark beer I wasn't aware of? Grolsch was my 'celebration' beer, couldn't afford it regularly.