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Old 17th September 2013, 17:06   #1
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Default List your past & current Audio Gear

During my mid teens i was bitten by the bug or the flair to own a big/clear sounding audio and i started digging out with whatever sources were aviable then. Early 90's were dominated with boomboxes primarily and the affluent families with a global outlook had audio/vidoe gear purchased entirely from abroad. i was in awe for anything that looked and sounded sophisticated specifically the hi-fi seperates (VFD Displays, external connectivity, fit & finish, convinience features and so on). There was one outlet in Chennai named Kittazz which had a huge bank of audio cd's and were equipped with numerous multi cd changers hooked up with cutting edge tape decks available then, the shop was designed very well, yes they were primarily into this after market audio recordings business done to audio tapes for customers who preferred a more quality material than those available from record companies. They mastered this & reached their peak in mid 90's.
I came to know Hi fi seperates were so different from combo audio and were quality oriented, better built, expensive and had a longer shelf life plus they were addressed as precision audio components. Few brands that caught my eyes were Nakamichi, TASCAM, TEAC, SAE and so on whose soudn output were comparable to broadcast quality yet used at home.

The following are the brands i owned and sold in past. Most recently I have settled in for the famous Mumbai based NORGE Audio amplfier designed by our famous Shyam Bajaj, i was told Bajaj sir had respectable customers to whom he had done the installations himself, being in heart of mumbai he gained access to get in touch with few music directors who were in praise of his work and humility. Here with Request esteemed members over here to share their fare share of similar experiences and details about their gear.

AV RECIEVERS USED:
1. TECHNICS SA-GX690 - 1995 MODEL.
2. SONY td- XXXX - 1997 model (4 years)
3. norge sa-2060 - 2012 - 2 channel amp.

Bookshelf speakers
1. Bose 306 series - vintage (198x)
2. JBL control 1 G monitor (1997)
3. Wharfedale diamon 4 (1992)
4. PSB the amazing alpha (1995)

Floor stander speaker (HT fronts)
1. kenwood vs-660 (yyyy)
2. yamaha ns-f 150 - currently using.

CD players
1. single cd marantz cd4000 - 1991 (1 year)
2. single cd denon dcdc 590 - 1992 (2 years) --SOLD

Cassette Deck
1. 3 head single well - denon drm 700a (1990)
2. 2 head single well - marantz sd-50 (1989) (6 years - till date)
3. 3 head 3 motor - onkyo ta6300 (1995) - broken - not in use

Sub woofer
1. Wharefdale - 8 inch sub (2004)
2. Paradigm - pdr10 10 inch sub (2000)

Last edited by sriramr9 : 17th September 2013 at 17:20.
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Old 17th September 2013, 18:18   #2
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Default Re: Current audio gear owned and what audio gear you owned in the past?

I mostly listen to active studio monitors. Is easy for me. I like it "clinical":

1) 2003-2010 : GENELEC 1029A legendary, exceptional polar response!
2) 2010-12 : JBL LSR2328 briefly owned, does what it should
3) 2011-now MACKIE HR824 good, muscular, oodles of headroom, horrible mid bass decay characteristics
4) 2007-now ALESIS ACTIVE M1 nice polar response.

For playback, it is mostly the laptop out. I never found a better CD player after my YAMAHA died.

I have a pair in my living room, with a lot of boundary compensation, aiming exactly where I sit. The Alesis here, it has a wonderful polar response. So I can move around quite a bit without missing the detail. It has a horrible 3-4 db bump near 100-110Hz. I need to apply a cut from the sound managers' EQ, after which it sounds flat and tight .

For the bedroom, it's the Mackies. They sound more like Hi Fi setups, not like monitors though. (My rooms are not acoustically treated either, but, an A/B test reveals it.) I always felt 2 way monitors should not have woofers more than 6.5 inch and crossed no more than 1.5-1.8kHz. Now very few tweeters would handle that. The Mac's have 8 inch drivers, quite flat down to 50Hz or so, but the mid bass overhang: could be better.

The best so far: Genelec 1029A. The woofer surrounds, showed signs of, well, not being in the pink of health after 7 years.

My genre: smooth jazz (Grover Washington type), classic rock, world music.

[PS: entirely my own opinion, absolutely no intention of starting a brand war, stirring a hornet's nest ]

Last edited by lapis_lazuli : 17th September 2013 at 18:25.
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Old 17th September 2013, 19:08   #3
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Default Re: Current audio gear owned and what audio gear you owned in the past?

Quote:
Originally Posted by lapis_lazuli View Post
I mostly listen to active studio monitors. Is easy for me. I like it "clinical":

1) 2003-2010 : GENELEC 1029A legendary, exceptional polar response!
2) 2010-12 : JBL LSR2328 briefly owned, does what it should
3) 2011-now MACKIE HR824 good, muscular, oodles of headroom, horrible mid bass decay characteristics
4) 2007-now ALESIS ACTIVE M1 nice polar response.

For playback, it is mostly the laptop out. I never found a better CD player after my YAMAHA died.

I have a pair in my living room, with a lot of boundary compensation, aiming exactly where I sit. The Alesis here, it has a wonderful polar response. So I can move around quite a bit without missing the detail. It has a horrible 3-4 db bump near 100-110Hz. I need to apply a cut from the sound managers' EQ, after which it sounds flat and tight .

For the bedroom, it's the Mackies. They sound more like Hi Fi setups, not like monitors though. (My rooms are not acoustically treated either, but, an A/B test reveals it.) I always felt 2 way monitors should not have woofers more than 6.5 inch and crossed no more than 1.5-1.8kHz. Now very few tweeters would handle that. The Mac's have 8 inch drivers, quite flat down to 50Hz or so, but the mid bass overhang: could be better.

The best so far: Genelec 1029A. The woofer surrounds, showed signs of, well, not being in the pink of health after 7 years.

My genre: smooth jazz (Grover Washington type), classic rock, world music.

[PS: entirely my own opinion, absolutely no intention of starting a brand war, stirring a hornet's nest ]
Those are some of the finest monitors around, am sure would have costed a ransom to buy those. What cabling do you prefer, what type of cabling do you rely upon ? Do you still use a Equalizer hard/soft ones. being a flat frequency lover. I think it's a odd man out to bring in the equalizer which tarnishes virgin signal source.
You can still purchase one of those DENON SACD's available out there, they are pretty good for the price one pays.
Just curios on your signal sources, how do you split the ends i.e. how do you split the source from laptop, you mean you use a dedicated cable running with a stereo jack input and RCA out's to feed to the monitor's directly.
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Old 17th September 2013, 19:11   #4
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Default Re: List your past & current Audio Gear

I am a 2-channel audio buff. Dont like 5.whatever, MP3, etc. Started with brands like Cosmic, Sony and Kenwood. Current set-up is :
Marantz CD player CD17
Marantz Amp PM17SA (damn thing weighs 16 kgs, don't know what they have put inside)
Marantz Tuner (cheap and basic given that there is hardly any English FM)
Speakers: floor standing Tannoy Revolution 3
Sub:REL-Q
Interconnects: VDH D 102 III
Speaker cables are DIY (recipe from a forum called TNT audio). Strongly recommended over over-hyped, high-priced brands.

The set-up is about 10 years old, but love it for its well balanced tone.
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Old 17th September 2013, 19:21   #5
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Default Re: List your past & current Audio Gear

I have

Player: Cambridge Audio DV99
Speakers: Wharfedale 9.2 Diamond Bookshelf
Amp: Norge 1000
+
DAC cables and interconnects
Speaker Stands (weigh ~ 30 KG!!) :-)
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Old 18th September 2013, 11:19   #6
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Default Re: Current audio gear owned and what audio gear you owned in the past?

Quote:
Originally Posted by sriramr9 View Post
Those are some of the finest monitors around, am sure would have costed a ransom to buy those. What cabling do you prefer, what type of cabling do you rely upon ? .... you mean you use a dedicated cable running with a stereo jack input and RCA out's to feed to the monitor's directly.

Not really: when picked up from US, its not as expensive. You need to find the right places. Only the ALESIS were bought from India. The MACKIE from S'pore, at a closeout sale, was a demo piece probably. I paid 1/3rd the price.

I am a person, who is not quite convinced that "a WIMA polyester capacitor" will change sound quality or, "the best interconnects should have platinum" or, "you can make out 0.01%THD from 0.05% THD". I just don't have those golden ears.

To prevent crosstalk and maintain good channel seperation, I use 2 single core co-ax, hand picked from the ample LAJPAT RAI market. Has a very thick braid. The type used in tape-heads earlier, with transparent sleeve. I had NEUTRIK gold plated TRS and 3.5mms. 4 meters of dedicated cabling each, for the left and right channel, and the TRS used in unbalanced mode.

At the ends, where the sleeve is stripped, a dab of "dendrite" adhesive makes it "jugaadu OFC". No air or moisture ingress! Or so I believe! My Herb Alpert sounds the same over the last several years !

All my speakers sit on 5 x NATARAJ or FABER CASTELL 2 rupee erasers each for isolating the speaker from the "whatever it's mounted on". Provides cheap and effective isolation! The soft rubbers...4 x for the 4 bottom corners and one in bottom center. No fancy spikes for me.

Last edited by lapis_lazuli : 18th September 2013 at 11:27.
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Old 18th September 2013, 11:45   #7
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Default Re: List your past & current Audio Gear

Current:

Usher Be-718 bookshelves with Usher RWS-729 Stands
Ayon CD-1s CD Player
Clearaudio Concept Turntable with Concept MC cartridge
Grundig CF5500-2 3-Head Tape Deck
McCormack TLC-1 Preamp
McCormack Phono Drive Deluxe Phono Preamp
McCormack DNA-125 Power Amp
Einstein audio speaker cables and interconnects
Norstone Bergen2 Equipment rack
Lots of mechanical isolation equipment

For HT, I also have an Onkyo SR577 and a set of Paradigm CT series HT speakers

Owned before:
Jamo E855
Nad C320 BEE
Audiozone DAC-1
Lyrita Audio Tube preamp
Citypulse DA7.2 DAC
EMU 1212M Sound card
Technics SL-B2 turntable

Last edited by reignofchaos : 18th September 2013 at 11:47.
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Old 19th September 2013, 10:52   #8
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Default Re: List your past & current Audio Gear

I'd love to see this thread grow. It seems that TBHP has quite a few "audiophiles" in it's midst.

I have owned various audio equipment over the past 35 years. I cant even remember most of the equipment. I remember building my first amplifier and speakers in around 1974-6 and have truly lost count of the amplifiers and speakers and various other audio projects.
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Old 19th September 2013, 15:22   #9
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Default Re: List your past & current Audio Gear

Technics SL-B2 turntable
Lyrita Audio Tube preamp
Musical Fidelity A100 amp
Couple of chinese EL84 tube amps
ProAc Tablette 2 bookshelves
Zero DAC
Objective DAC
Audinst MX1
Audio Technica W5000 Raffinato
Ultimate Ears TF10
Kimber Kable 8TC

Previously owned:
EMU 1212M Sound card
VALAB USB NOS DAC
Dynaudio BM5
Travagans 3inch
CambridgeAudio Azur 540A V2
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Old 21st September 2013, 04:50   #10
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Two channel:
1) Paradigm Studio 20
2) Sansui receiver (1966 made)/Adcomm 545/B&K ST-140/NAD T270 (Yes, I have too many amps)
3) Cambridge Audio DAC magic

HT and Living Room Stereo
1) Vandersteen 2CE Fronts, Paradigm CC-210 Center and ADP-200 Surrounds
2) Pioneer SC-35 AVR
3) Panasonic BD player
4) Pioneer SACD/DVD-Audio Player
5) SOTA Sapphire Turntable with SME tone arm and Shure V-200 Cartridge

Past bought and sold
a) Paradigm Monitor 11
b) Wharfdales diamond 8 series
c) Axiom Audio M3
d) Denon AVR 1602
e) NAD T-743
f) Cambridge Audio Azur 640A
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Old 21st September 2013, 07:38   #11
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My current main system:
1. Quad 99/909 amplification
2. Harbeth C7ES3 speakers
3. Marantz KI Pearl lite SACD player as back up, subsequent to moving all music to a HDD
4. Rega P5 turntable, as conversation starter only now.
Dining room:
1. Sonos Connect Amp
2. Spendor S3/5 SE speakers
Balcony:
1. Yamaha AX397 amp
2. Bose 251 external speaker pair
Kitchen:
Denon DM39 system with speakers
Bedroom:
Sonos Play5 speaker
HT:
2 channel NAD amp, powering a Quad 11L speaker pair for sound for a 50" plasma.
All my music is now ripped to a HDD, that is accessed and distributed wirelessly to all the above audio systems via Sonos units. Which also do the same just as well for internet radio streams. With everything also wirelessly controlled by a Sonos app hosted on an I pod touch. All CDs are boxed and stored in the loft.
I am now firmly in the camp of believers that in the current digital/solid state era, sound quality is audibly influenced by speaker quality and room acoustics to the extent of 95%. Source quality is important, but in the domain of recording and mastering quality, modestly priced home reproduction and amplification components are good enough, as long as they are allowed to work within designed limits without clipping, by the speakers. Cables too need to just be of adequate gauge for the run length, fancy cables are just a modern version of snake oil, as are expensive external DACs.
All of this, after over a decade of owning, using, selling or giving away:
1. CDPs - Marantz 6000KI, Quad 99 CDP
2. DACs - Musical Fidelity Trivista tube DAC
3. Amps - Cadence VA1, Rotel RA2, NAD C370, Unison Unico, Unison S3, Conrad Johnson 2500
4. Speakers - Cadence Amaya
5. Van den Hul speaker cabling and interconnects
After going through the equipment obsession phase, I have simplified my systems, and now spend more time listening to the music. The classic case of shifting attention from the finger pointing to the moon, to the moon itself.

Last edited by Sawyer : 21st September 2013 at 07:50.
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Old 21st September 2013, 08:31   #12
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To add to the equipment disposed of list are power conditioners, isolation platforms, and a Musical Fidelity x10 tube buffer with a dedicated power supply box. With a cryo treated cable connecting the two.
I have now found that the best tweak for better and more liquid sound is to turn the lights down low, and imbibing a favourite tipple.
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Old 6th April 2014, 14:50   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sawyer View Post
My current main system:
1. Quad 99/909 amplification
2. Harbeth C7ES3 speakers
3. Marantz KI Pearl lite SACD player as back up, subsequent to moving all music to a HDD
4. Rega P5 turntable, as conversation starter only now.
Dining room:
1. Sonos Connect Amp
2. Spendor S3/5 SE speakers

All my music is now ripped to a HDD, that is accessed and distributed wirelessly to all the above audio systems via Sonos units. Which also do the same just as well for internet radio streams.
That was a huge list Sawyer. Wanted to know more about the setups, can you please post some pics. How did source them, all from abroad as most of the gear seem to too exotic for the general public.

Any bhp'ian using Wilson Audio Speakers ? Also looking forward to know about some review comments on B&W 803d floor standers as my brother had recently acquired it.

Last edited by sriramr9 : 6th April 2014 at 14:56.
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Old 7th April 2014, 06:36   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sriramr9 View Post
How did source them, all from abroad as most of the gear seem to too exotic for the general public.
Most of this is quite standard stuff for audio enthusiasts and available via local distribution - as is even more exotic kit than this now.
Only Sonos is hard to obtain - I ordered mine from Amazon US, but they don't ship it to India anymore. Local prices are too high and the best way that still remains for this is buying in the US and carrying it to India.
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Old 20th May 2014, 09:34   #15
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Amazon have restarted shipping Sonos to India, so I have rounded off my home audio set up by buying the units necessary to move to an all Sonos platform. Still have the Harbeth C7ES3 speakers in the living room, but with Sonos front end units. Works brilliantly, the latest Sonos feature set married to traditional Harbeth sound quality.
As a result, my Quad/Marantz components are now redundant and I have just posted them for sale in TBHP classifieds.
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