Who's a Happy Camper?

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  • 01-09-2006, 03:03 PM
    topspeed
    Who's a Happy Camper?
    Just a quick poll to see who is happy with their rig at this moment in time. Audio/Videophiles are usually a quirky group in that they seem to possess the unending desire to tweak, upgrade, trade, whatever. There's nothing wrong with this of course, it is a hobby after all. This, combined with ever-changing technologies (BluRay anyone?) compells most of us to stay on the cutting edge. For example, my friend has replaced his preamps twice, his amps 4 times, and now his speakers 4 times in the past 2 years! This isn't B&M stuff either, he's running Rowland with Legacy Whispers now (I think, who knows at this point?).

    For me, I'm pretty content right now and don't foresee any major changes save for equipment failure. This is not to say my rig if perfect, only that any improvements aren't important enough for me to spend money on.

    Remember kids, this is just a snapshot in time. We won't hold you to this later ;).
  • 01-09-2006, 03:39 PM
    Woochifer
    Great topic topspeed!

    Interesting to see how "content" the poll voters seem so far (albeit with only two votes so far), considering how often we discuss the upgrades that people make on this board. I'm pretty much content on the audio side. The CD/SACD changer that I bought last month was the first substantive upgrade that I've made to my system in more than two years, and it simply replaced an 11-year old CD changer that was beginning to wear down. (I also replaced the cartridge on my turntable a year ago, but that also simply replaced a worn out item)

    Thus far, I've held steady on the video side, but that will all change the minute I buy a HDTV. Once that happens, then the upgrades and pending upgrades will come fast and furious! Just as buying my first DVD player eventually led to a complete home theater system 2 1/2 years later, I expect that buying my first HDTV will lead to a similar process on the video side. And going to Blu-ray or HD-DVD to cap off my video upgrades might uncork the inevitable audio upgrades, because I'll be looking to take advantage of the lossless multichannel audio formats that will come with those new HD video discs. Okay, so maybe it is a "hobby" to me!
  • 01-09-2006, 04:01 PM
    kexodusc
    I'm content with what I have, I just want more to go along with it...does that count? Can never have too many speakers. I suppose a DIY speaker hobby necessitates that though, but lately I've been doing it for other people.

    Gear wise, eh, I'm pretty good for now. Guess in the back of my mind I'd always want more, but I've got more amps than I can use at the moment, more receivers than TV's, and enough source components to drive them all. I don't hear enough difference in the next level up in components to justify upgrading, because that same cash will provide more benefit if invested in speakers. Guess I'm saving up for something really...don't know what though yet.

    Dabbling in full-fledged room treatments finally, just minor tweaks here and there...acoustic foam, DIY bass traps, etc. Slow going, but interesting.
  • 01-09-2006, 04:04 PM
    SlumpBuster
    Alright, I voted "Almost there." I'm actually content, but since I have planned upgrades waiting in the wings including a new sub and big screen HDTV/maybe projector, I voted "almost." The only reason I haven't gotten them yet is that I don't want to do it untill we move to our next house in a year or so. I want to be able to take any new room into consideration with my upgrades. Also, I'm looking around for a new cassette deck of all things, but does that really count?
  • 01-09-2006, 04:26 PM
    topspeed
    Wooch,

    My friend, you've been talking about upgrading your monitor to HD for a year and a half now! Bite the bullet man! Once you come to the realization that whatever you buy is going to be outdated as soon as you get it calibrated, it's a lot easier to make the leap ;)! j/k. I feel ya on the video upgrade. Our new monitor led to a new hd/dvr and universal player. All said and done, the $2,200 tv eventually ended up costing me another $1,500 in front end upgrades! Domino effect: it sucks.

    Kex,
    Ahh, to have the time and space to build speakers. I'm more relaxed just thinking about it. I envy you and Ed, although Frias takes the cake as he's getting a new toy I'm drooling over. (pm me for details if you're interested)

    Slump,
    A cassette deck?!? You're pullin' my chain, right? My cars don't even have cassette decks in them! No, it doesn't count. :D:D:D
  • 01-09-2006, 04:47 PM
    kexodusc
    I can only guess Ed has got himself something in excess of 350 HP. Lucky guy. Good for him, he's one of the good ones.
  • 01-09-2006, 05:01 PM
    topspeed
    Yep. Something to the tune of 155hp "in excess" of 350! Hoo-wheee!!!

    Agreed, he's definitely a great guy.
  • 01-09-2006, 05:05 PM
    kexodusc
    Oh man, that's like double what my front-wheel drive Accord Coupe has...man I'm jealous.
    Does it glide effortlessly over 2 feet of snow at 130 Km/hr? :D
  • 01-09-2006, 05:18 PM
    dean_martin
    Hey Speedy, I'm happy with the recent turn my system has taken. My ss amp/preamp is gone and in its place is a Jolida tube integrated. But I knew I would have to do something about my cd player too so I swapped out my AMC for a Cambridge Audio D500SE. I made this change in November as the first step in an extensive overhaul. The difference in cd playback is significant and very much to my liking. The next step is an outboard phono preamp (I'm using my old preamp's phono section now) and a new cartridge - hoping to get both of these at one time. Another step is new speakers. I hope to take one of these steps by the end of this month. It feels good to finally have come up with an affordable plan that I can implement and that will be an improvement. I think once completed, I'll be "content" for about 3-5 years (not counting experimenting with different cartridges and tubes) until I can spring for a nice tube preamp and tube monoblocks.
  • 01-09-2006, 05:19 PM
    topspeed
    Bwahahahahaha!
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by kexodusc
    Does it glide effortlessly over 2 feet of snow at 130 Km/hr? :D

    :D:D:D

    *wipes tear from eyes* I dunno. Ask him!
  • 01-09-2006, 05:31 PM
    L.J.
    You musta read my mind. I was gonna this same thread. I slowly upgraded all of last year so I'd better be content. Started off with my AVR & DVD player, then moved on to my speakers about 6 months after. Lastly I got a CD player about a month ago. My C-9's are amazing. I love these speakers. I've been thru most of my CD collection all over again. I've been slowly building my SACD & DVD-A and DVD collection, and I actually sit and listen to music now. I never use to do that. I guess a good pair of speakers will do that to ya. No more major purchases in the near future for me except a PS3.
  • 01-09-2006, 05:31 PM
    kexodusc
    Cool, so what you're saying is I can out run him off road in a blizzard. Nice.
  • 01-09-2006, 05:32 PM
    GMichael
    Can I vote more than once?
    I am very happy with the system I have now. 55" HDTV with a 7.1 sound system is great. Makes TV and movies better than I had ever hoped. But if I can have more then I'm all for it. Once the house is built (tired of hearing this yet? I'm tired of saying it) the HD projectors are going in. One in the living room and onother in the bedroom. The prices have been coming down on these like crazy while the quality has been going up. The Sanyo Z4 is already down to under $1800 street price. Mitsu even came out with a DLP for around $3k. By next summer who knows what will be available. The Z3 will most likely end up in the bedroom with my 6.1 system. Black out cloth is already getting a good looking at.
    Down the road, far down the road, my main system will move into the basement to keep the pool table company. The old Pioneer will have to move to the garage. Then a new system will go into the living room. I've had my eye on a few things but leave the door open to change as time changes all things.

    500 pony power huh? Very nice. I'll just wave at your tailpipe from inside my Acura CL as you fly by.
  • 01-09-2006, 06:14 PM
    topspeed
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by GMichael
    500 pony power huh? Very nice. I'll just wave at your tailpipe from inside my Acura CL as you fly by.

    I wish I could say it's mine. Alas, I have to make due with *only* 333hp ;).

    I'm getting the feeling I need to put a time limit on option 2. Maybe require upgrades within a 2 or 3 month window because eventually we'll all upgrade given enough time, resources, and a divorce or two.
  • 01-09-2006, 06:18 PM
    topspeed
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by dean_martin
    Hey Speedy, I'm happy with the recent turn my system has taken. My ss amp/preamp is gone and in its place is a Jolida tube integrated.

    I remember you mentioning the Jolida a bit back and it sounds like it's worked out famously. Glad to hear it, Dino. BTW, is that an E-Type in your avatar?

    LJ,
    You'll have to get in line for your PS3 behind Wooch and myself. No cutsies!
  • 01-09-2006, 06:37 PM
    dean_martin
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by topspeed
    BTW, is that an E-Type in your avatar?

    Yes it is. The avatar is from the site for the Italian comic book series "Diabolik". Mario Bava directed a campy movie based on the comics called "Danger: Diabolik" back in the late 60s. Diabolik drove a black E-Type while his babe Eva drove a white one. John Phillip Law played Diabolik in the movie. If you find the original Batman The Movie (the Adam West one) entertaining you would probably like Diabolik.
  • 01-09-2006, 06:45 PM
    L.J.
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by topspeed
    LJ,
    You'll have to get in line for your PS3 behind Wooch and myself. No cutsies!

    No fightin' youngsters or waiting in line for me. I'm waiting until I can just walk into the store and buy one with no headaches.

    My kid's pissed because, daddy's getting a PS3 and he's not touching it.
  • 01-09-2006, 07:01 PM
    Woochifer
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by topspeed
    Wooch,

    My friend, you've been talking about upgrading your monitor to HD for a year and a half now! Bite the bullet man! Once you come to the realization that whatever you buy is going to be outdated as soon as you get it calibrated, it's a lot easier to make the leap ;)! j/k. I feel ya on the video upgrade. Our new monitor led to a new hd/dvr and universal player. All said and done, the $2,200 tv eventually ended up costing me another $1,500 in front end upgrades! Domino effect: it sucks.

    Believe me, if it was only the monitor upgrade (and if I was the only one deciding), I would have done it a long time ago! Somewhere along the way though, that HDTV fund got turned into a low-voltage track lighting fund, then a patio cover fund, and now it's magically morphed into a retaining wall fund (and while we're at it, there's also the sofa/loveseat fund, and the dreaded new car fund that it might morph into next!).

    In addition to those front and back end costs (to do HD/progressive, I got the satellite box and DVD player to upgrade from the outset, plus I want to do the entire video chain using HDMI connections), I got the WAF to consider as well. My better half has already declared no big ugly boxy TVs in the living room (which limits the HD options to flat panels or front projection), and she also wants more hideaway storage for all of those DVDs that I keep buying (and stacking along the wall, because adding more "ugly" standalone DVD racks is out of the question). So, this means that I'll be adding a new Salamander rack with the media drawer add-ons (I plan to eventually use that rack as a flat panel stand) before I even get around to deciding on a HDTV! Ah, the eternal bliss of matrimony!

    Talk about dominoes falling -- my technophobe parents wound up getting a HDTV before I did! (They're in the half of American households with the blinking 12's on their VCR and no clue how to program one of those things for recording) Shockingly, they went all out by getting a 50" plasma with a built-in HD-DVR (of course, I had to program everything for them before coming back to the Bay Area)! Once again, it was the woman of the house that drove that decision -- my mom wanted a big picture, but did not want the image to "disappear" when sitting off to the side, while my dad would have been fine with a hulking rear projection console. That HDTV is major overkill for the stuff that my parents play on it (mostly broadcast channels on cable and some DVDs), but it makes them happy and with 24-months interest-free and a paid-off mortgage (a VERY nice place to be, considering that they bought the house for $60k some 30+ years ago), the cost takes only a small chunk out of their social security checks!
  • 01-09-2006, 07:09 PM
    bobsticks
    Happily discontent
    You know, it almost seems as if this could pose two questions.[At this moment in time] I'm pretty happy. Mozart's Concerto for Violin,Piano and Orchestra in D Major ended not too long ago. Even owning a modest system, I can appreciate so much more music--certainly genres that never would have been readily apparent to me with the ol' HTIB.
    That having been said, just knowing the possibilities out there is pretty intriguing and I am enjoying the auditioning process.
    I try to be a "cup-is-half-full" kind of guy. Though I'm committed to growth and evolution with my system, I certainly wouldn't let current shortcomings interfere with my enjoyment at this moment in time.
  • 01-09-2006, 08:02 PM
    SlumpBuster
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by topspeed
    Slump,
    A cassette deck?!? You're pullin' my chain, right? My cars don't even have cassette decks in them! No, it doesn't count. :D:D:D

    My wife calls that rack of equipment "The Graveyard." All dead formats. I have cassette, VHS, and minidisk. She made me get rid of the 8 track and reel to reel. In college, I went through a reel to reel phase after Pulp Fiction came out. But, what I really want is a digital compact cassette deck, a DAT deck and a Laserdisk deck. :D
    But, seriously, I got alot of bootlegs and live stuff on cassette and never had a high end deck before. So I've been poking around on Ebay and Audiogon. You can get some sick decks for almost nothing.
  • 01-09-2006, 08:06 PM
    SlumpBuster
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Woochifer
    Believe me, if it was only the monitor upgrade (and if I was the only one deciding), I would have done it a long time ago! Somewhere along the way though, that HDTV fund got turned into a low-voltage track lighting fund, then a patio cover fund, and now it's magically morphed into a retaining wall fund (and while we're at it, there's also the sofa/loveseat fund, and the dreaded new car fund that it might morph into next!).

    Ain't that the truth! Over Christmas break, the wife and I went to see Syriana. After listening to some goon behind us hack up a lung through the whole movie, I said "F--- it. Let's go to Best Buy and get the biggest HD they got and never go to the movies again." To my surprise, she actually said okay. However, we didn't even make it into the store. We got side tracked into an Ethan Allen, and my HDTV is now a dining room set. :D Only upside is that when I finally do get HD, the cost will look cheap by comparison. :D Ahhh, wedded bliss.
  • 01-10-2006, 04:01 AM
    Bernd
    Great Thread.
    I am good to go and spinning!
    Was very lucky to be able to put together what I consider a really good musical system over the last 24 months. I have no interest in HT or multichannel so could concentrate solely on quality music reproduction and system synergy.
    Had my first dedicated music room completed august last and it's bliss.Privacy-hurrah! The last piece was the Transfiguration Temper V cartridge.
    I also still use a Tape-deck (Nakamichi CR-7E) and wouldn't be without it. If I want to watch anything it's on an ordinary Sony TV,VCR and a budget Toshiba DVD. Does the trick for me,but it's very seldom called into action.
    Enjoy.

    Bernd
  • 01-10-2006, 07:01 AM
    Feanor
    I'd just be a music lover
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by topspeed
    Just a quick poll to see who is happy with their rig at this moment in time.
    ...Remember kids, this is just a snapshot in time. We won't hold you to this later ;).

    "I'll be content when I'm dead!" Otherwise I'd just be a music lover!! ;)

    Right now my stereo system sounds great but that doesn't mean I'm happy. For one thing, there's my HT system that could do with upgrading to my stereo standard; (and yes, I'd still need both. My wife uses the HT all the time but never the stereo).

    Other than that I'd like to add those DIY subwoofers to the stereo; (see my comments in the Tweaks/DYI forum). Also I want to experiment with a Behringer DEQ2496 RTA+1/6 octave graphic equalizer; (right now I have a Behringer T1951 parametric). A tube preamp such as the ModWright might be an improvement too.

    Then there's the bedroom system. Definitely a priority to loose those old Rat Shack Minimus 7's; maybe substituting a pair of Mirage OmniPolars.

    Getting back to the stereo in the living room, those Maggies take up a lot of space :( . I can imaging replacing them with DIY Accuton/Accuton 2-ways, combined, of course with the aforementioned subwoofers I've yet to build.
  • 01-10-2006, 12:37 PM
    JohnMichael
    I am content with my system. The components are tweaked, on various types of supports(cones and soft), speakers exactly where they sound best and the correct wire for different components. Of course as some of you know I have a left channel dropout problem with the cd player. So far a smack brings the channel back to life. I am sure when I replace it not for sonic reasons as much as for dependability I will have to figure out which support and cables work with the new one. Well I will enjoy the sound for now until I have to introduce a new component.
  • 01-10-2006, 12:44 PM
    GMichael
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by JohnMichael
    I am content with my system. The components are tweaked, on various types of supports(cones and soft), speakers exactly where they sound best and the correct wire for different components. Of course as some of you know I have a left channel dropout problem with the cd player. So far a smack brings the channel back to life. I am sure when I replace it not for sonic reasons as much as for dependability I will have to figure out which support and cables work with the new one. Well I will enjoy the sound for now until I have to introduce a new component.

    Introduce a new component?

    "Hello CD player, meet the new DVD player" "He will be in charge of smacking your bottom whenever your left side drops off." "Hope you two will be very happy together."

    Now where did I leave those cables to tie these two together?