What was your intro to HiFi? [Archive] - Audio & Video Forums


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03-14-2004, 07:04 PM
I'm sure this has been asked before, and I know this will "date" some of you - SORRY! I was 11 years old and begging for a "stereo" system for my 12th birthday. Raking through the discount store ads,
my mom and dad overwhlem me with a Soundesign system w/ turntable, cassette, 8-track and all - it even came w/ headphones!
Boy, I was in heaven - especially since one of my frineds gave me
Hotel California and Boston as my first albums (even though I had many more my brother handed down to me - original Beatles and Stones, etc... that I didn't know how to appreciate at the time) While boasting about my new "system" at baseball practice, a kid w/ an Onkyo t-shirt on laughs. "What is an Onkyo anyway?" I ask. In less than a month, I've taken every penny I've earned from yard work, car washes, etc... and purchased my first REAL system - spent about $750 on a Yamaha amp & preamp, Pioneer tuner, Sony turntable and picked up some Advent speakers at a "yard sale" for $50. For the life of me, I can't remember the speaker model, but they were about 9 years old and sounded and looked like they had never been used.
I still have that Soundesign system tucked away in a storage closet - and pull it out every now and again and stick in some old 8-track just for the fun of it (EVERYTHING still works!) And I still have that Onkyo t-shirt I paid the kid $5 for off his back!

03-15-2004, 10:55 AM
My parents had one of those huge Sears stereos that were all the rage in the early seventies - big oak cabinet with doors that opened on each end for the speakers and the tuner and turntable in the center - you had to lift the top to expose the controls and put on a record. However, my first hi fi experience was my next door neighbors Heathkit Amp and Preamp and home made speakers - they may have been Heathkit as well, not sure. They had a Technics Turntable and someone put on Fleetwood Mac "Never Break the Chain." I just remember hearing the opening acoustic guitar and being floored at how real it sounded. I must have been about 15 yrs old. I have been afflicted ever since!

03-15-2004, 11:55 AM
Arriving home after posting this thread, I decided to dig in that old closet.... The t-shirt wasn't Onkyo - it was Sansui ! (guess I've had Onkyo on the brain, about to purchase new receiver). There it was, along with several old brochures and several boxes of past Stereo Review mags. Always had to cancel and restart my subscription - it always made me crave new gear.... BTW, just recently noticed that Julian Hirsch passed away last Nov (I think) - shows how out of touch I have been.....I always looked forward to his reviews and articles.

03-15-2004, 03:48 PM
it was a record player with speakers that were built into the top but could come apart for that "full stereo" sound! My first albums were "Steppinwolf - Monster" (whcih I just picked up on cd last week) and Blood, Sweat & Tears (the one with spinning wheel) great stuff! My first "real" system was a Sansui 7000 I picked up in Korea in 1979....my friend still owns it...(I swapped him for a Strat-copy guitar) I will buy one of them again someday!!! I also had Bose 501's (ok ok kill me!) and in the eairly 80's I picked up a nice Fisher rack system (I still run the 60wpc amp in my bedroom @ the fire house) fun stuff!!

03-15-2004, 04:13 PM
that was long before Bose was crammed down our throat! Thinking about it Bose marketing scheme has probably helped some of these upstart speaker companies who only sell direct gain a following....

03-15-2004, 06:41 PM
The first time I heard Rush's 2112; I was in sixth grade. Still one of my a time favorite albums!

03-15-2004, 11:18 PM
I was 12 when I had my first real system my parents bought me (a mini GE bookshelf system, bottom of the barrel of audio but I didn't know any better, it had a CD player which is all I wanted)... moved up with a pair of big vintage magnavox speakers driven with a no-name amplifier given to me by a friend (they sounded really good with a Sansui receiver I dug out of my dad's closet some time later), I thought I had it all after that... I never had money to get anything more, of course I was a kid and couldn't get a job.

I was totally blown away with my friend's main Kenwood system (one of those big systems you find for $1500 in the Sears ad back in the early 90's), this same person who gave me his Magnavox speakers... With a good accoustic environment they sounded really loud, good, and full... back when my hearing was most sensitive. I wanted something like that for a long time. I found these Cerwin Vega's at that time which were bigger than the Kenwoods, I trusted they sounded just as good and loud (they were MONSTERS)... My dad never got them for me :(

Although he gave me his Pioneer amplifier, I kept the Sansui to drive the Magnavox speakers as they sounded better with it. 10 years later (about a year ago from now), I bought the CV's I've wanted for so long now that I had money!

I've never been exposed to ANY ads from Cerwin Vega but I've always been drawn into Bose (I was young). I still have several brochures from Bose and my dad still has his 401 set (they're nowhere as powerful sounding as the Kenwoods or CV's)... Somehow my "Kenwood" experience hasn't left me as I still like "loudspeakers"... Someday, I'll appreciate something more 'audiophile' in my later years... I appreciate what I have now...