Results 1 to 24 of 24
  1. #1
    Forum Regular
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    7

    after 25 yrs need new stereo. want simple elegance. help!

    I want to buy a simple, elegant stereo. When I last purchased a system CD's didn't exist, so I am way out of touch. I'd like a 2 channel FM receiver comparable to the Marantz 2270 from the late 70's, 2 nice floor speakers, and a simple CD player. Budget $1000 to $1200. I'm an old retro grouch who doesn't like complexity. I just want to sit in a chair and listen to good, clear music from a system that doesn't look like the cockpit of a Boeing 777. Does anyone have any ideas for me?

  2. #2
    a hell of an engineer
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    229
    Quote Originally Posted by reynolds532
    I want to buy a simple, elegant stereo. When I last purchased a system CD's didn't exist, so I am way out of touch. I'd like a 2 channel FM receiver comparable to the Marantz 2270 from the late 70's, 2 nice floor speakers, and a simple CD player. Budget $1000 to $1200. I'm an old retro grouch who doesn't like complexity. I just want to sit in a chair and listen to good, clear music from a system that doesn't look like the cockpit of a Boeing 777. Does anyone have any ideas for me?
    I will take a shot at making some recommendations for you. First, I assume that you want to buy new and not used equipment. If this assumption is incorrect, then please let me know.

    New Marantz equipment is out of your price range. For a somewhat old fashioned look in new, high quality stereo equipment, I would recommend Harman Kardon. Specifically, I would recommend the Harman Kardon FL8385 CD Changer and the Harman Kardon HK3380 Stereo Receiver. These are available for $179.88 with free shipping and for $229.88 with free shipping from J&R, which is an authorized H/K online retailer.

    For speakers, I would recommend the Swan Diva 4.1 speakers. These speakers are available for $749 per pair from The Audio Insider, their sole U.S. distributor. Secrets of Home Theater and High Fidelity did this review of the Swan Diva 4.1 speakers in May, 2001.

  3. #3
    Forum Regular Registered Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    101
    I actually disagree with the previous poster. I would not put much money into a CD player. Just buy an inexpensive one with features you like. They are all pretty much the same. Others will disagree, but that's my feelings.

    I regards to amplification, I would go the route of separates, meaning a pre amp and power amp. Entry options from Rotel should fit within your budget nicely. There are many others out there, such as B&K, NAD, etc, but lately I've been partial to Rotel at entry-level prices. This will give you the most flexibility with the least compromise.

    As for speakers, there are too many options to list. I would recommend doing a lot of auditioning. I believe most here will back that up. Just see what your local stores have available and pick your favorite. An in home trial is essential. Speakers sound different in different environments.

  4. #4
    a hell of an engineer
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    229
    Quote Originally Posted by brulaha
    I actually disagree with the previous poster. I would not put much money into a CD player. Just buy an inexpensive one with features you like. They are all pretty much the same. Others will disagree, but that's my feelings.
    I agree that most any CD player or DVD player would do the job with little difference in sound quality. I suggested the H/K model because of the quality of the components used and because it matched the appearance of the H/K receiver.



    Quote Originally Posted by brulaha
    I regards to amplification, I would go the route of separates, meaning a pre amp and power amp. Entry options from Rotel should fit within your budget nicely. There are many others out there, such as B&K, NAD, etc, but lately I've been partial to Rotel at entry-level prices. This will give you the most flexibility with the least compromise.
    I agree that separate components would provide the high level of craftsmanship that reynolds532 is looking for. However, if he tries to fit them into his budget, he will not have much money left for speakers which make by far the most difference in sound quality. For example, the Rotel RA-1062 60W X 2 amplifier sells for $699, and that's without the tuner he would need to pick up FM broadcasts. The Rotel RX-1052 receiver sells for $899. In my opinion, modern electronics are so good that you pay a lot for a slight difference in perceivable sound quality.



    Quote Originally Posted by brulaha
    As for speakers, there are too many options to list. I would recommend doing a lot of auditioning. I believe most here will back that up. Just see what your local stores have available and pick your favorite. An in home trial is essential. Speakers sound different in different environments.
    I agree with the importance of auditioning and the importance of an in-home trial. What I disagree with is the idea of limiting yourself to whatever brands of speakers happen to be available from local retailers. Local retailers must mark up their products simply to stay in business; to pay the rent, the utilities and their employees. You can get more speaker for your money by dealing directly with the manufacturer or importer. Swan speakers are a particularly good value because they can be purchased directly from the importer and because the company that makes them (Hi-Vi Research) also makes their own drivers (woofers/mids/tweeters). Like most reputable online speaker dealers, The Audio Insider offers a 30 day return policy so that their customers can conduct their own in-home auditions. They can afford to do so because their products are such a great value when compared with the speakers available from local retailers at the same price. It is extremely difficult to buy "open box" Swan speakers because so few are returned.

  5. #5
    Forum Regular thepogue's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Hayes, Va
    Posts
    491

    is used out of the question??...

    there is tons of simple used equiment out there....


    let me know and I'll find some simple, inexpensive used gear...

    Peace, Pogue
    • Mark Levinson No. 27
    • Musical Fidelity 308cr
    • Martin Logan Prodigy's
    • Ariel Acoustics 10-T
    • Rega Planet CD
    • CJ Premier 9 DAC
    • Linn LP12 - Basik Plus - Valhalla
    • Benz Micro Cart.
    • Akai GX 747 Reel to Reel
    • Straight Wire Virtuoso Interconnects

  6. #6
    Forum Regular
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    7

    Great advice. A few clarifications

    Bargainseeker, you nailed the style I want. The HK3380 receiver is very nice, and a great price. I also like the style of the Swan Diva speakers with the real rosewood veneer (we have rosewood floors in our family room). But I like Brulaha's advice about actually hearing the speakers. It's a tough call for me, because I believe I can get a much better deal if I buy something like the Swan Diva's direct. With two 5" mid/woofers, will these have good bass without a subwoofer? I don't need to rattle the windows, but a Ilike good punchy bass.

    I haven't decided about the cd player. It's great to know that the sound will be good if I can find a decent looking one for substantially less than the Harmon Kardon.

    Thepogue, for me to go used I'd have to be sure to get twice the equipment for the same money, and it would have to be perfect.

  7. #7
    a hell of an engineer
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    229
    Quote Originally Posted by reynolds532
    Bargainseeker, you nailed the style I want. The HK3380 receiver is very nice, and a great price. I also like the style of the Swan Diva speakers with the real rosewood veneer (we have rosewood floors in our family room). But I like Brulaha's advice about actually hearing the speakers. It's a tough call for me, because I believe I can get a much better deal if I buy something like the Swan Diva's direct. With two 5" mid/woofers, will these have good bass without a subwoofer? I don't need to rattle the windows, but a Ilike good punchy bass.
    There have been a number of technical advances in the last 25 years that enable small woofers to produce more and lower bass. The Diva 4.1 speakers go down to 37Hz. For most styles of music, this will provide plenty of bass. If you are fond of pipe organ music, you would probably be happier with a subwoofer. What the 5" woofers in the 4.1 won't do is play very loud in a large listening room without a subwoofer. If your listening room is large, or you really like to "crank it up", you may want to consider one of the two larger towers in the Swan Diva series.

    Here is my suggestion for handling your at-home audition: order your electronics and the Swan Diva speakers of your choice. When everything arrives, hook it all up and let the speakers play loud on FM while you are out of the house to allow the speakers to break in. Then, make the rounds of your local audio stores and audition speakers. Bring the finalists home for an in-home audition and then keep the speakers you like best and return the rest. If I were a betting man, I would give you very good odds that the Swans will win based on their combination of build and sound quality.
    Last edited by bargainseeker; 01-23-2005 at 09:46 AM.

  8. #8
    Forum Regular Registered Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    101
    Bargain:

    You're right, I did go a bit over budget. I guess I thought an increase of a few hundred dollars would yield high returns in this particular case. I'm also an avid used shopper (of high quality gear) so I'm used to factoring $500 - $600 for a used amp and pre amp. I forgot how expensive they are new. Speakers on the other hand, I'm much more leery about buying used. However my used subwoofer still rocks. Never could have afforded it new and still going strong after 3 years of use. I will say that whenever I buy used, I have always stayed local so I can do an inspection and make sure it works properly.

  9. #9
    Forum Regular thepogue's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Hayes, Va
    Posts
    491

    used used used....

    good good good....



    Peace, Pogue


    Quote Originally Posted by brulaha
    Bargain:

    You're right, I did go a bit over budget. I guess I thought an increase of a few hundred dollars would yield high returns in this particular case. I'm also an avid used shopper (of high quality gear) so I'm used to factoring $500 - $600 for a used amp and pre amp. I forgot how expensive they are new. Speakers on the other hand, I'm much more leery about buying used. However my used subwoofer still rocks. Never could have afforded it new and still going strong after 3 years of use. I will say that whenever I buy used, I have always stayed local so I can do an inspection and make sure it works properly.
    • Mark Levinson No. 27
    • Musical Fidelity 308cr
    • Martin Logan Prodigy's
    • Ariel Acoustics 10-T
    • Rega Planet CD
    • CJ Premier 9 DAC
    • Linn LP12 - Basik Plus - Valhalla
    • Benz Micro Cart.
    • Akai GX 747 Reel to Reel
    • Straight Wire Virtuoso Interconnects

  10. #10
    Loving This kexodusc's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Department of Heuristics and Research on Material Applications
    Posts
    9,047

    Some food for thought.

    Quote Originally Posted by bargainseeker
    I agree with the importance of auditioning and the importance of an in-home trial. What I disagree with is the idea of limiting yourself to whatever brands of speakers happen to be available from local retailers. Local retailers must mark up their products simply to stay in business; to pay the rent, the utilities and their employees. You can get more speaker for your money by dealing directly with the manufacturer or importer. Swan speakers are a particularly good value because they can be purchased directly from the importer and because the company that makes them (Hi-Vi Research) also makes their own drivers (woofers/mids/tweeters). Like most reputable online speaker dealers, The Audio Insider offers a 30 day return policy so that their customers can conduct their own in-home auditions. They can afford to do so because their products are such a great value when compared with the speakers available from local retailers at the same price. It is extremely difficult to buy "open box" Swan speakers because so few are returned.
    This notion of dealing directly with the company to achieve savings is really more marketing "happy feel good" hype than truth...and would be an incredibly poor business model if the supposed savings passed on were true.

    The idea that distribution via dealers (brick and mortar stores) reallocates costs to the consumer is heavily flawed, as is the idea that.selling via internet sales passes on savings to the consumer.

    Distribution provides several benefits to both the consumer and manufacturer...value added in many ways. I would argue that shipping costs are paid anyway by the consumer through either method, and the "rent, utilities, and employees" costs are distributed among hundreds of products, very minimal at best to each individual product, a small fraction of the price.. Considering that a retail sales force can be more effective at generating sales (hence increasing production and output), it stands to reason that far greater economies of scale could be realized through the traditional approach of using dealer networks. Thus, lower costs. Not to mention the option of allowing consumers to "test drive" the speakers first, a definite road block to many potential buyers for internet shops...30 day purchase price guarantee or not (few refund shipping).

    Second, its rediculous to think that if these speakers were truly worth other speakers 10%, 40%, 100% more expensive, the internet company wouldn't do everything it takes to realize this value. They're not in the business of giving away speakers for cheap just to make friends...they're in it for the buck, they've got "rent, utilities, and employees" to pay for too. If the product is as good as they claim, it should be reflected in the price, or, we should be seeing incredible drops in competitors prices...this isn't happening.

    Having owned 2 internet direct speakers (well a VTF-2 Hsu Research sub, and my Axiom M3Ti's) and heard several others (though honestly, not the Swans) I can honestly say neither were significantly better than competing products, but rather competitive alternatives. I'm not surprised of low returns, the cost to the consumer of paying return shipping and the expectation factors weigh in I'm sure, but for the most part, these are usually good products and I'd recommend these as possibilities.

    I do believe that some of these companies have low overhead, and can competete quite well cost wise compared to other companies, allowing them to remain competitive in pricing. But in the end, their prices are a funtion of the market, not gesture of good will to mankind, and I have little doubt they just take the "middle-man" out of the equation and keep any surplus margins for themselves. Why wouldn't they?

    As for companies building drivers in house- it captures more profit as much as it passes along savings...but it's certainly nice to know that a 3rd party won't discontinue parts should you ever need them. If they're good at it, great, but there are benefits to buying custom drivers from large operations like Vifa-Speak, rather than investing capital into r&d, especially if your market and production economies are 1/1000th the size of a speaker manufacturer's worldwide.

  11. #11
    Forum Regular
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Posts
    8
    I'll recommend a receiver and cd player combination that sounds great to my ears and is certainly affordable.

    I used to own a Sherwood R725 Receiver. Gave it to my ex and upgraded to the R925, then upgraded to the R956R. Still think the R725 sounded the best for the money out of the 3 of them, really big analogue style sound and easy to use.

    I also got her a Cambridge Audio CD6 CD Player and it's one of the best I've heard. This setup is connected to just a set of monitors and still sounds great. With a decent pair of floorstanders I think it would sound acceptable to anyone at that price.

    I'm using a Cambridge Audio Azur 640 CD Player and have no complaints, sounds good with the Sherwood R956 and the Celestion F20 floorstanders I'm using.

    You should check locally if any of the Sherwoods are available new, and I'd go for the 725. I think you could afford one of these plus one of the Cambridge Audio cd players plus a decent pair of speakers and remain in your budget.

    Good luck.

  12. #12
    Forum Regular
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    7

    How does Diva compete with Polk, JBL, etc

    Here's why I think that direct to consumer can save me money. I never heard of Diva until yesterday. How can they compete with the Polk's and the JBL's when Diva doesn't have brick and mortar distribution and a sales force pushing the product? They have to beat the big brand names on price. It doesn't have anything to do with their service to mankind, rather their position in the market forces them to provide more speaker for less money, or I'll go to the Audio store with all the benefits of local purchase. The only caveat is that a disreputable company could use slick marketing to trick me into thinking I was getting a superior product for less money, but that company wouldn't last long with information spread on forums like this. Since I have very little product knowledge the service provided by the local dealer might be worth the extra dollars, but if I really new my stuff, I'm quite sure I could save some money by direct purchase.

  13. #13
    a hell of an engineer
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    229
    I think that most people in the U.S. would be very surprised by the scope and scale of the Swans/Hi-Vi Research operations on a global basis. I know I was. The small number of Swans speakers available at The Audio Insider is only the tip of the iceberg. As I understand it, Hi-Vi Research started as a manufacturer of raw drivers for other companies. Later they also became an OEM, manufacturing finished loudspeakers for other companies. Most recently, they started selling their own brand of finished speakers (Swans). They are still relatively new to the U.S. market. The vast majority of Swans speakers are not yet available here. So far, they seem to be relying on word-of-mouth with limited online advertising as their total U.S. marketing campaign.

    I recommend browsing the Swans Speaker website and the Hi-Vi Research website to get a better sense of their overall operation. Hi-Vi Research is particularly known for their ribbon drivers, which appear in some expensive high end loudspeakers (e.g., Ascendo).

    There are other Swans speakers that do not even appear on their website. For example, Hi-Vi/Swans was a Best of CES 2005 Finalist in the Ultimate Audio category for their S600 speaker system. I had never heard of the S600 before, so I looked it up on Google. There are pictures of the S600 in this Chinese news article, but I could find no detailed information in English. Apparently the S600 is yet another Swans speaker not available in the U.S.
    Last edited by bargainseeker; 01-24-2005 at 04:35 AM. Reason: Added CES info

  14. #14
    Sgt. At Arms Worf101's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Troy, New York
    Posts
    4,223

    Talking Hey man good to see you again...

    Quote Originally Posted by thepogue
    there is tons of simple used equiment out there....


    let me know and I'll find some simple, inexpensive used gear...

    Peace, Pogue
    Missed you my friend. I thought you were part of the "great exodus". Glad to see you back.

    Da Worfster

  15. #15
    Forum Regular Registered Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    143
    I second the recommendation of the HK3380. I own the prior model and I like it quite a bit. I'd like to suggest a couple alternatives in cd players and speakers. A couple affordable cd players would be the Yamaha CDC 685 and the Onkyo DX-C390. In speakers the Athena Technology AS-F2 might be a good choice. If you can't find the speakers at Best Buy you could order a pair from audioadvisor.com. Onkyo is available at Circuit City but you'll have to check the Yamaha website for a dealer in your area. Thepogue is correct that you can save some bucks buying used but you need to do your homework. Audiogon is a good source for contemporary components while audiokarma.org might help if you want to stick to vintage gear. I would also recommend Polk Audio as an affordable speaker. If you can find some Rti series floorstanders for a good price you might want to give them some serious consideration. I hope this doesn't confuse the issue too much. Have fun doing some auditions and take your time--there are a lot of good choices! Good luck.

  16. #16
    Just passing thru topspeed's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    California
    Posts
    3,607
    I'll play the roll of dissenter on this one...

    I have both a Marantz 2230 and a Denon 3803 and can state unequivocally that great vintage receivers such as your 2270 will sound better than any new mass market receiver. I don't care if it's a Denon, Yamaha, HK, Onkyo, or whatever, there's a reason why old beasts from Pioneer, Sansui, Fischer, and our beloved Marantz are still held in high regard. Quite frankly, they built them a heck of a lot better back then. If your 2270 gave you 25 years of faithful, enjoyable service, I'd recommend either having it refurbished (like I did) or buying one that has been. You can find used refurbished units, even sought after ones like the 2285B, on ebay or audiogon all the time.

    Hope this helps.

  17. #17
    Forum Regular Woochifer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    SF Bay Area
    Posts
    6,890
    If anything those vintage Marantzes looked like an airplane cockpit with those rows of buttons, dials, and switches! I grew up with a Marantz 2275 (the 2270's successor), so I can definitely speak to their build and audio quality.

    Keep in mind though that in inflation-adjusted dollars, the equivalent of $600 (the price of a Marantz 2270) from 1975 would now be worth about $2,100. Even though audio has progressed in many areas in the meantime and costs have held steady over the years in current dollars, your $1,000 to $1,200 budget will likely not give you equivalent value to what you're replacing, especially since you're aiming for a two-channel setup. As topspeed suggested, maybe restoration of your Marantz should be one of the options.

    Right now, the market is aimed towards multichannel, and that's where you get the most functionality for the money since modern home theater receivers are asked to not only provide amplification, but decode a litany of digital audio formats, switch audio and video signals, function as a crossover for subwoofer output, and freely switch between digital and analog inputs as well. However, it's not where you'll get the best two-channel performance. Unfortunately for you, the choices in the affordable two-channel range have declined in recent years.

    A simple "elegant" system would entail an integrated amp and CD player from some of the few companies that even make decent entry level two-channel equipment anymore such as NAD, Rotel or Cambridge Audio, along with a pair of speakers.

    With regard to the speakers, you've so many choices now. You really need to take your time, because the speakers will make or break your system. The old "west coast" "New England" and "British" sound labels from 25 years ago have really blurred, but in general the affordable speakers nowadays give you much better value than the entry to midlevel choices that were available in the 70s and 80s. As others have pointed out, the type of sound that you can get out of a smaller speaker now is a huge step above what they were capable of 25 years ago.

    I would suggest that you consider standmounts for your speakers. Floorstanding speakers in the under $1,000 price range generally have issues with cabinet resonance and less than ideal imaging. With standmounts, you get less bass, but just about everything else is a step up. I would suggest that you start with a speaker budget of at least $600. That will put you within sniffing distance of some of the better bookshelf speakers like the Paradigm Monitor 5 or Studio 20, B&W DM602, Dynaudio Audience 42, Energy Connoisseur C3, Monitor Audio S1, and Klipsch RB-35. You can also try out some different types of speakers as well such as the Vandersteens or Magnepans.

    The speakers will probably take the most time because the differences there are most obvious and subject to personal preference. Just enjoy the auditioning because it will be very interesting considering that you've not shopped for anything since the pre-CD days. Differences between amps and CD players are much narrower, and incremental improvements in sound quality give you much less value than with speakers.

  18. #18
    RGA
    RGA is offline
    Forum Regular
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Posts
    5,559
    Quote Originally Posted by reynolds532
    I want to buy a simple, elegant stereo. When I last purchased a system CD's didn't exist, so I am way out of touch. I'd like a 2 channel FM receiver comparable to the Marantz 2270 from the late 70's, 2 nice floor speakers, and a simple CD player. Budget $1000 to $1200. I'm an old retro grouch who doesn't like complexity. I just want to sit in a chair and listen to good, clear music from a system that doesn't look like the cockpit of a Boeing 777. Does anyone have any ideas for me?
    First I have not read the other responses so hopefully this isn't redundant - I'd avoid most current receivers for one they likely won't sound better and b some are confusing and filled with endless crap you're never likely to use(at least for the AV receivers) I own a relatively current 1 year old Marantz receiver and it's not the least bit user friendly. Personally this is what I would do - either keep the amp you have or buy something like the Rotel RA 1 integrated amp and then get a cheapo FM tuner at a pawn shop - I picked up one that retailed from Yamaha at $300+ and got it for $29.00. I later traded it in and got $75.00 for it so not bad for a 6-7 year old unit.

    This kind of set-up would be current and sound good with most speakers I've tried it on. I don't know what kind of music you listen to or how much bass you require - however I would probably recommend the following system for $1200.00 if you listen from rock to classical as an exceptional system.

    Speakers: Audio Note AX Two Standmount speakers ($549.00) - They are hand made in Denmark and use high quality Vifa Drivers. Bass is tuneful but not killer deep (that's why they have more expensive speakers - but clear they are).



    Speaker stands: Skylan 24 inch two post sand fillble ($160.00). This is an area you may save a bit of cash on by going cheaper but these are very very nice stands. http://www.skylanstands.com/stands.htm

    CD players: Rotel, Arcam, Cambridge Audio for single disc players. Note hough that if you have an extensive music collection a 300 disc player isn't a bad bet - they're very cheap as mp3 is popular. I have been happy with the unit and it would fair as well as most entry level single disc models. You will need to read a manual and they take time to set-up. But the Sony is under $200.00 and once you load it all up and keep track of which number you've assigned to the disc (use a spreadsheet) then you can sit back and listen to all your music without getting off the couch. The other players will range around $300.00-$500.00.

    Amplifier: Again you can look at Rotel or NAD or Cambridge Audio - there are others but this is not a bad start. ~$400.00 - ~600.00. A similar set-up is recommended here http://www.venushifi.com/recommended.shtml - I have not heard the cd player or anything from MMF but the Jolida's I've heard are excellent - they specialize in tube amplification - yes they're still around and yes IMO they sound better generally not absolutely better than SS amps for the same money.

    Such a set-up if you're careful would be about $1150.00 - $1250.00 as amps and cd players you'll no doubt find cheaper. Speakers are a personal taste of course so the above is more about what I would do in this budget. I think the speakers will be worth it to try and track down especially if some of the other ones in most stores are not impressing.
    Certainly B&W 602S3 or Dynaudio A42 are considerations but I think the AX Two sounds better and is cheaper. Also these speakers with stands could be pushing close to $1000.00 alone. This site shows a picture of the AX Two at a hi-fi show and although cheap speakers they fronted a pretty high end system - don't let the price fool you - I have heard speakers - and i hate to say it ecause it is said entirely too much - a few multiples their price that don't do the music thang nearly as well. Scroll down about half way http://www.enjoythemusic.com/vsac2003/sunday/

    This websie has several reviews - and I believe Venus hifi will let you try them at home witha money back gaurantee so you can't beat that. http://audiokarma.org/forums/showthread.php?t=21756
    Attached Images Attached Images

  19. #19
    Forum Regular thepogue's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Hayes, Va
    Posts
    491

    same here brudda...

    Alls well in virginia!! hope you and your crew are doing well!! I jetted back in the day but I'm migrating back now and again...nice to see by brudda!!!


    Peace-out, Pogue


    Quote Originally Posted by Worf101
    Missed you my friend. I thought you were part of the "great exodus". Glad to see you back.

    Da Worfster
    • Mark Levinson No. 27
    • Musical Fidelity 308cr
    • Martin Logan Prodigy's
    • Ariel Acoustics 10-T
    • Rega Planet CD
    • CJ Premier 9 DAC
    • Linn LP12 - Basik Plus - Valhalla
    • Benz Micro Cart.
    • Akai GX 747 Reel to Reel
    • Straight Wire Virtuoso Interconnects

  20. #20
    Can a crooner get a gig? dean_martin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Lower AL
    Posts
    2,902
    I'll chime in only on the issue of receivers vs. integrateds vs. seperates. From about 1989 to 2001, I had a NAD 25wpc stereo receiver. It sounded nice but all of a sudden it hit me that I just had to have new equipment. I started with a new pair of speakers and then a new cd player. When I decided to upgrade my amplification I quickly realized that in this day the quality of integrateds is generally better than the quality of stereo receivers. (In fact, when I was looking, it wasn't even close.) I've since picked up 2 NAD and one Cambridge Audio integrated amps. You still have to be careful in selecting an integrated by reading consumer reviews, etc. particularly with respect to reliability/quality control. For example, I've had both the NAD C340 and C350 amps for about 4 years now with no problems at all. But, a more recent model 320BEE which was supposed to be a special production unit has had all kinds of problems.

    The new HK stereo receiver is the most promising one I've seen in the last 5 years. But, I would still compare it to a few integrateds. The integrated gives you the option to shop ebay, audiogon, pawnshops and flea markets for those beloved old analog tuners - I have 2 Yamahas, one Marantz and a Rotel and am constantly on the lookout for others. Plus, they can be had cheap.

    I would consider refurbishing the Marantz before buying one of today's stereo receivers (the HK may be an exception).

    Finally, with a little luck you can actually get into seperates for under $600. I have an Acurus A100 power amp that I got practically brand new for $300 (others from Adcom, Parasound, Rotel, Nad, etc. can be had slightly used in that same price range) and a Parasound P/HP 850 preamp new for $250. Here's a pic:

    http://gallery.audioreview.com/showp...cat=500&page=2

  21. #21
    What, me worry? Registered Member piece-it pete's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Cleveland Ohio
    Posts
    718
    I'm with Topper and Wooch, the 2270 is a great rec'r (sharp looker too), and you should be able to have it seriously overhauled for about $250-300 max. Get the right guy and it'll sound better than it ever did - the replacement parts will be better quality than the originals.

    What speakers are you replacing?

    Pete
    I fear explanations explanatory of things explained.
    Abraham Lincoln

  22. #22
    Forum Regular thepogue's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Hayes, Va
    Posts
    491

    preamp...

    hey man where did ya get the preamp so cheap??

    Peace, Pogue


    Quote Originally Posted by dean_martin
    I'll chime in only on the issue of receivers vs. integrateds vs. seperates. From about 1989 to 2001, I had a NAD 25wpc stereo receiver. It sounded nice but all of a sudden it hit me that I just had to have new equipment. I started with a new pair of speakers and then a new cd player. When I decided to upgrade my amplification I quickly realized that in this day the quality of integrateds is generally better than the quality of stereo receivers. (In fact, when I was looking, it wasn't even close.) I've since picked up 2 NAD and one Cambridge Audio integrated amps. You still have to be careful in selecting an integrated by reading consumer reviews, etc. particularly with respect to reliability/quality control. For example, I've had both the NAD C340 and C350 amps for about 4 years now with no problems at all. But, a more recent model 320BEE which was supposed to be a special production unit has had all kinds of problems.

    The new HK stereo receiver is the most promising one I've seen in the last 5 years. But, I would still compare it to a few integrateds. The integrated gives you the option to shop ebay, audiogon, pawnshops and flea markets for those beloved old analog tuners - I have 2 Yamahas, one Marantz and a Rotel and am constantly on the lookout for others. Plus, they can be had cheap.

    I would consider refurbishing the Marantz before buying one of today's stereo receivers (the HK may be an exception).

    Finally, with a little luck you can actually get into seperates for under $600. I have an Acurus A100 power amp that I got practically brand new for $300 (others from Adcom, Parasound, Rotel, Nad, etc. can be had slightly used in that same price range) and a Parasound P/HP 850 preamp new for $250. Here's a pic:

    http://gallery.audioreview.com/showp...cat=500&page=2
    • Mark Levinson No. 27
    • Musical Fidelity 308cr
    • Martin Logan Prodigy's
    • Ariel Acoustics 10-T
    • Rega Planet CD
    • CJ Premier 9 DAC
    • Linn LP12 - Basik Plus - Valhalla
    • Benz Micro Cart.
    • Akai GX 747 Reel to Reel
    • Straight Wire Virtuoso Interconnects

  23. #23
    Can a crooner get a gig? dean_martin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Lower AL
    Posts
    2,902
    Quote Originally Posted by thepogue
    hey man where did ya get the preamp so cheap??

    Peace, Pogue
    I got mine at www.audioadvisor.com, but I can't find it on their website anymore. I thought that it may have been recently discontinued, but it's still on the Parasound website as a current product.

    http://www.parasound.com/products/preamps/php850.html

    Note the manufacturer's suggested retail price of $249. Before I got mine, I found a demo at a shop and thought I would give the local guy a sale. But, he wanted $450 for it. I told him about Parasound's website advertising it for $249. He looked it up and then said he couldn't sell his because he was using it. Of course I haven't been back since. There are a couple of other reputable online dealers of Parasound goods, but I've forgotten their names and a quick search didn't turn up anything. It seems like one was called Spirit Sound or something similar.

    The P/HP 850 is flexible and quiet. It has a phono input and headphone amp both of which are ok. The linestage is open and clear. The phono is a little lifeless, but adequate. The headphone amp drives my Grados to decent levels. For $250, I couldn't find anything else comparable.

  24. #24
    Forum Regular thepogue's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Hayes, Va
    Posts
    491

    Parasound Pre

    thanks...that really seems to be a steal...I'm not sure if I'd go that route but anyone putting together a system and had a limited budget it seems it would be a prefect fit!!

    Thanks fer the info!!


    Peace, Pogue
    • Mark Levinson No. 27
    • Musical Fidelity 308cr
    • Martin Logan Prodigy's
    • Ariel Acoustics 10-T
    • Rega Planet CD
    • CJ Premier 9 DAC
    • Linn LP12 - Basik Plus - Valhalla
    • Benz Micro Cart.
    • Akai GX 747 Reel to Reel
    • Straight Wire Virtuoso Interconnects

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 13
    Last Post: 01-05-2005, 01:29 PM
  2. Surround Sound vs 2 channel stereo
    By Wireworm5 in forum General Audio
    Replies: 22
    Last Post: 05-29-2004, 11:12 AM
  3. Simple Minds
    By Stone in forum Rave Recordings
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 04-16-2004, 10:34 PM
  4. Running a Proton D1200 in 2 ohm stereo...danger?
    By Weister42 in forum Amps/Preamps
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 02-01-2004, 07:13 PM
  5. Listening to 2ch stereo CDs in 4ch mode.
    By RichardNC in forum Home Theater/Video
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 12-01-2003, 09:53 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Latest AudioReview Articles

Hot Deals

Latest News

AudioReview on Facebook