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  1. #1
    Forum Regular harley .guy07's Avatar
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    The test of time

    Here is a good question for all of you fanatics of audio like myself and it might make for some good conversation with all of my audio review forum friends.

    1. What audio company do you think has stood the test of time the best and kept their product quality high and has kept their place in the high end market and has stayed on top in their segment?

    2. What audio company do you think has let their products fall off of the quality standard that they once were when the company started and have fallen down in high end sound and longevity.

    I will start this with my two answers.

    1. One company that I think has stood the test of time and has kept their products high quality and has stayed on top of their price class is Paradigm. they have always been a great option in their respective performance and price level.

    2. The company that I feel has fell off of quality and performance standards from where they once were is Yamaha. The newer Yamaha stuff just does not seem to have the build quality and performance that they had when I sold them years ago. I have looked at several of their products and have not been impressed by any of them, and I think there are others like me that think this way because their products never rate as well as the other brands in their price class like they used to.

    I am very interested in reading what all you guys have to input on this topic and I think it will be a good friendly debate topic.

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  2. #2
    Vinyl Fundamentalist Forums Moderator poppachubby's Avatar
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    I think Linn have done wonders to stay at the top, while keeping the brand's image ultra high end. They continue to be super committed to performance over style, marketing or gimmicks.

  3. #3
    Forum Regular audio amateur's Avatar
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    I haven't been around that long so i wouldn't know

  4. #4
    Forum Regular blackraven's Avatar
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    Magnepan, Audio Research, Cambridge Audio, Van Alstine, Bryston, NAD (they have had their ups and downs but they still make a good product), Parasound, Adcom, CJ, Onkyo, B&W, B&K to name a few
    Pass Labs X250 amp, BAT Vk-51se Preamp,
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    Magnepan MMG's, Grant Fidelity DAC-11, Class D CDA254 amp
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  5. #5
    Vinyl Fundamentalist Forums Moderator poppachubby's Avatar
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    I guess afetr some though, I'll say Kenwood isn't what they used to be back in the day. Pioneer has made a nice comeback with the Elite series...

  6. #6
    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blackraven
    Magnepan, Audio Research, Cambridge Audio, Van Alstine, Bryston, NAD (they have had their ups and downs but they still make a good product), Parasound, Adcom, CJ, Onkyo, B&W, B&K to name a few
    Of these I'd agree at least with the smaller, privately owned companies, at least including Magnepan, ARC, Van Alstine, Bryston, and Conrad Johnson.

    When any company is sold to a conglomerate, a red flag goes up. It then becomes a matter of calculation -- maybe a very bad one -- whether the quality and service integrity of the old organization is maintained, or whether is lessened in quest for lower cost, broader market penetration, or whatever.

    Control of Krell has recently changed and it remains to be seen what the result there will be.

  7. #7
    Forum Regular blackraven's Avatar
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    I think that Parasound, Cambridge Audio, Adcom and Onkyo have all found a comfort zone niche at their price points. They all make good sounding reliable equipment and don't try to be more than they are.
    Pass Labs X250 amp, BAT Vk-51se Preamp,
    Thorens TD-145 TT, Bellari phono preamp, Nagaoka MP-200 Cartridge
    Magnepan QR1.6 speakers
    Luxman DA-06 DAC
    Van Alstine Ultra Plus Hybrid Tube DAC
    Dual Martin Logan Original Dynamo Subs
    Parasound A21 amp
    Vintage Luxman T-110 tuner
    Magnepan MMG's, Grant Fidelity DAC-11, Class D CDA254 amp
    Monitor Audio S1 speakers, PSB B6 speakers
    Vintage Technic's Integrated amp
    Music Hall 25.2 CDP
    Adcom GFR 700 AVR
    Cables- Cardas, Silnote, BJC
    Velodyne CHT 8 sub

  8. #8
    M.P.S.E /AES/SMPTE member Sir Terrence the Terrible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blackraven
    I think that Parasound, Cambridge Audio, Adcom and Onkyo have all found a comfort zone niche at their price points. They all make good sounding reliable equipment and don't try to be more than they are.
    I absolutely agree with you on this.
    Sir Terrence

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  9. #9
    Forum Regular hifitommy's Avatar
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    audio research, VTL, mc intosh, magneplanar, and

    numerous others-orofon ferinstance. the canadian speaker makers-psb, energy, paradigm.

    they are still there because they still deliver the goods. adcom and nad too. shure brothers, audiotechnica. b&w, kef. buying any of those products will result in reliable performance for the most part. there are certainly others.
    ...regards...tr

  10. #10
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    As far as Audio Companies, none have fallen as hard and as fast as "The Shack"! While growing up, it was always fun to get a Radio Shack catalog and look at the 9b's, Mach 1's , T120's, raw drivers and crossovers and of course those 100 watt monster receivers that seem to keep the other audio companies in line as far as prices. How about the headphones, use to love the headphones! What in the world happened to this company.

    There hasn't been a reason to stop by a Radio Shack store in decades and that's a real shame.

  11. #11
    RGA
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    Interesting idea but subjective of course - I feel Paradigm has slipped since the V2 series a decade or so ago. They charge a lot more for their speakers and they sound worse. The build uality of the V3 compared to the V2 alone should make you leary.

    Yamaha wasn't exactly ever great to start with. Perhaps it is more that you've moved past the likes of Yamaha while they have not caught up to your standards.

    I think many companies have not really improved - their marketing perhaps. B&W's Matrix series was the best they ever made - and they like Toyota are making inferior products holding on based on their name recognition. This happens when the founders leave or die.

    The smaller outfits tend to be better IMO either for long lasting quality or younger companies. Their passion is "more" in the product and less in the bottom line. Big companies only care about the latter.

  12. #12
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    Kenwood

  13. #13
    Phila combat zone JoeE SP9's Avatar
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    1. Audio Research Corporation: I still lust after their "Reference" gear.

    2. Martin Logan: Speakers with cones that aren't woofers? Non ESL speakers?

    There are others in both catagories.
    ARC SP9 MKIII, VPI HW19, Rega RB300
    Marcof PPA1, Shure, Sumiko, Ortofon carts, Yamaha DVD-S1800
    Behringer UCA222, Emotiva XDA-2, HiFimeDIY
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