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GnarlyCharlie4u
Sep 23, 2007

I have an unhealthy obsession with motorcycles.

Proof


Mr. Wiggles posted:

This is all good stuff, thanks! My speaker cabinets are actually pretty ok, but it's the lack of a sub that limits me. That and lovely speaker wire. And possible bad bits inside the Akai. The Klipsch Heresies are about the size I'm looking for, though, so maybe that will be my treat to myself after reflooring the house, etc. etc. In the meantime, the Yamaha AS series looks right for me.

Warning about the Heresy's you need to like horns.
I don't know how to tell you what Horn "tweeters" sound like, but I do know I don't like them so much, and that Heresy's aren't for me.
But the Heresy's get fukkin' LOUD if that's your thing.

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Ok Comboomer
Oct 20, 2007



Mr. Wiggles posted:

This is all good stuff, thanks! My speaker cabinets are actually pretty ok, but it's the lack of a sub that limits me. That and lovely speaker wire. And possible bad bits inside the Akai. The Klipsch Heresies are about the size I'm looking for, though, so maybe that will be my treat to myself after reflooring the house, etc. etc. In the meantime, the Yamaha AS series looks right for me.

Unfortunately the Heresies that are really worth getting and that everybody raves about are the brand new Gen 4’s with the new rear port (they get 10 Hz deeper than the old model and basically completely change the Heresies’ character from “weird, with zero low end, but cool if you’re a collector or you’re into it ” to “you could actually have these as your only workhorse speaker set and feel great about it”. They did this at the cost of adding like $800 to the price of each pair so now they retail for like $3 grand a set. But apparently they’re worth it, so don’t let that stop you if you can swing the dosh.

Also new and refurb AS amps end up on Accessories4less all the time so definitely do check them out.

RichterIX
Apr 11, 2003

I'm going to kill myself tomorrow.


Be careful with these as they require some kind of proprietary equalizer that the speakers sound like dogshit without that A) if it breaks can be hard to replace and B) require a tape loop which I don't know if any modern receivers include. This is the reason for my dad's arcane home theater setup that involves outputting just the two 901s to a separate amp of their own.

Great speakers though if you don't hate the Bose sound.

large hands
Jan 24, 2006



I don't know anything about modern Bose stuff except that it seems like a bit of a scam but a buddy has a pair of old 901s and they're beautiful and (I think) sound amazing.

They're definitely unusual, I know they use the special equalizer thing, I'd forgotten about using the tape loop. I guess the equalizer has something to do with them just using what look like mid drivers.

What's the "Bose sound", I've heard that term before

EL BROMANCE
Jun 10, 2006
TUBGIRL ENTHUSIAST



No highs, no lows

large hands
Jan 24, 2006



EL BROMANCE posted:

No highs, no lows

I'll have to have a proper listen next time I can hang out with him.

Ok Comboomer
Oct 20, 2007



large hands posted:

I'll have to have a proper listen next time I can hang out with him.

The Bose Sound is basically (bassically?) the opposite of what people often call the Beats Sound today.

The Beats Sound vastly predates the existence of Beats as a company and has a history of being very popular, particularly as a way of making music sound more “alive” and “aggressive”.

Remember those old plastic Sony boomboxes with BASS BOOOOOST? That idea’s been around since at least the 70s with JBL/Pioneer and that whole “West Coast Sound” vs “East Coast Sound” thing, and from the mixing/mastering side with “pop mixing” in the 80s for dance and pop music. The 90s loudness war further emphasized the trend.

To an inexperienced listener, “East Coast” or flatter curve (what most audiophiles claim to want) tends to sound boring or clinical, while “West Coast” or pop speakers can sound anywhere from “cheap” to “normal” to “fun” because it’s what people are often used to. Conversely, audiophiles, pros, and people who listen to lots of flat speakers often deride the poppier sound as “artificial” or “tubby”.

An inversion of the “Pop/Beats/West Coast” curve, where you scoop the highs and lows and boost the mids, yields a notably different experience—not better or worse, but different from the vast majority of projected audio that you hear in your day-to-day.

Bose’s marketing genius was putting that difference front and center with showrooms and displays. People would come in, hear the “Bose Sound” and associate it with a premium or high end experience.

From a philosophy standpoint it’s honestly no different from any other company like Klipsch/JBL/McIntosh/Marantz/Yamaha/etc that cultivates a signature sound that people either love, tolerate, or despise. The one big difference is that Bose did the Beats thing of going really hard after the plebs and ignoring the enthusiast market, and you know how much fanboys of anything hate that.

large hands
Jan 24, 2006



Very interesting read, thanks. I've always judged my system and speakers on how it sounds flat ("tone defeat" on my old NAD amps "source direct" on the current Sony preamp) I figured if I needed to adjust the bass or treble then the speakers or room weren't up to snuff.


I've been playing a programming puzzle game recently where you build different embedded systems and program them with a made-up form of assembly. One of the puzzles early on is an "harmonic maximizer" that does basically that, this page from the manual subtly makes fun of the audio companies selling such things:

large hands fucked around with this message at 19:37 on Apr 30, 2020

MrSargent
Dec 23, 2003

Sometimes, there's a man, well, he's the man for his time and place. He fits right in there. And that's Jimmy T.

Not sure if this is the right thread but I have been looking for a decent vintage cassette deck and was wondering if there were brands/models I should keep an eye out for. The only thing I know I want is a 3-head cassette deck, can be single or dual cassettes, and is front-loading. Would definitely appreciate some suggestions/advice.

Chumbawumba4ever97
Dec 31, 2000



MrSargent posted:

Not sure if this is the right thread but I have been looking for a decent vintage cassette deck and was wondering if there were brands/models I should keep an eye out for. The only thing I know I want is a 3-head cassette deck, can be single or dual cassettes, and is front-loading. Would definitely appreciate some suggestions/advice.

I went to an audiophile forum because I was transferring some really rare cassettes to my computer and I was told the Teac V-1050 pretty has the best sound quality in existence.

Edit: I think I paid like $100 for mine on ebay but this was in like 2012. The drat things are like $400 now. https://www.ebay.com/itm/TEAC-V-105...6039?nav=SEARCH

Chumbawumba4ever97 fucked around with this message at 16:35 on May 6, 2020

EL BROMANCE
Jun 10, 2006
TUBGIRL ENTHUSIAST



3-head is only used if you're dubbing to cassette, if you're only interested in playback you can take that off the 'needs' list. It is neat to have though.

I have a Nakamichi Cassette Deck 2, it's a simple straightforward bit of kit I picked up for $50 boxed in a second hand store. The least flashy Naka ever, but does me fine. I've had nice Sony and Yamaha decks too, there's plenty of good stuff out there really.

Ok Comboomer
Oct 20, 2007



EL BROMANCE posted:

3-head is only used if you're dubbing to cassette, if you're only interested in playback you can take that off the 'needs' list. It is neat to have though.

I have a Nakamichi Cassette Deck 2, it's a simple straightforward bit of kit I picked up for $50 boxed in a second hand store. The least flashy Naka ever, but does me fine. I've had nice Sony and Yamaha decks too, there's plenty of good stuff out there really.

I have a Receiver 2 and a (currently nonworking) CD Player 2 that are my dad’s/were the living room stereo components when I was small. I am so curious about this device that you have.

The ‘1, 2, 3’ series was at the tail end of Nakamichi’s slow collapse and they’re super hard to find.

pzy
Feb 20, 2004

Da Boom!


I don't think there's a Nakamichi deck made that would disappoint you (as long as it's working.... looking at you RX-505)

Edit: I also found a Cassette Deck 2 at a thrift store years ago! Currently using a Dragon though (brag)

pzy fucked around with this message at 17:57 on May 6, 2020

EL BROMANCE
Jun 10, 2006
TUBGIRL ENTHUSIAST



Yup that’s the one. High five fellow deck haver.

Djarum
Apr 1, 2004

I promise, that one day, everything's going to be better for you.


Soiled Meat

Yeah pretty much any Nakamichi is going to be good. I had a Tri Tracer growing up. I'd love a Dragon but they are too for me especially so I am not much of a cassette guy.

I have no idea what a good CD unit would be. I'd love to have something that did SACD as well but I'd settle for something cheaper and quality.

Don Dongington
Sep 27, 2005

#ideasboom

College Slice

My dad is a jerk.



A E S T H E T I C

OldSenileGuy
Mar 13, 2001


The A/V receiver for my home entertainment system finally died last week, and in the process of replacing it I have fallen down a rabbit hole replacing a lot of elements in my setup. And now I've come to my turntable, which is easily the least aesthetically pleasing component I have, and thinking about upgrading that.

I currently have a Technics SL-D3 that I bought on eBay in 2014, and aside from the ugliness (the dust cover is all scratched/clouded out and was never attached to the system itself) it's mostly been fine. I put an Ortofon Omega cartridge on it and I was happy with it. However, I've been noticing in the past year or so that I'm having to adjust the speed more and more frequently. Whenever I put on one of the albums that is burned into my brain how it "should" sound, I always have to speed up or slow down the table (usually slow it down) to get it right. It's a small thing, but kind of annoying when I just want to put a record on and veg out.

So I've decided to get a U-Turn Orbit. I really like the minimalistic look of it, and most reviews say it's basically the best you can get in that price range. Plus I like how it comes already calibrated out of the box - I don't want a table I'm going to have to tinker with a lot.

I'm just deciding between cartridges - I've got it narrowed down to the Grado Black3 or the Ortofon 2M Red. The Red is only $20 more expensive than the Black, so the price difference is negligible. I just want whichever's gonna make my vinyl sound the best. There's a lot of people online talking about how Grado cartridges have a specific sound to them that you may or may not like, or how the Ortofon Red tends to overemphasize the bass, and I can't tell if any of it is real or if it's all audiophile bullshit. Anyone have any opinion on these two? I'm leaning towards the Red because it's more expensive and as we all know, more expensive = better than. But I'm open to opinions.

Additionally, one of the things that I felt necessary in my new receiver (Denon AVR-S750H) was an integrated phono input. I really wanted that so I could ditch my external preamp and have one less black box to plug in and one less set of rca cables around. But now that I'm getting a new table, obviously I want to do what I can to make it sound as best it can. So - is the preamp that's integrated into my new receiver likely to be as-good-as or better than the external one I have (TCC TC-750)? Or is one phono stage just as good as another and any perceived differences between them are just more audiophile nonsense?

Man, audiophiles made it real hard to find real useful information on the internet scattered amongst their bullshit of gold cabling and wooden knobs.

RIP Paul Walker
Feb 26, 2004



If speed issues bother you, basically all (at least all cheap ones) belt drives will suck.

For a helpful suggestion, check out the spaceship saucer Denon things. Super pretty and excellent speed control, and the higher end ones have trick electromagnetically damped tone arms. I have a DP-57M with a Denon 301 Mk2 that sounds like a CD if CDs were analog.

Pappyland
Jun 17, 2004

There's no limit to your imagination!


College Slice

Hi all,
After something like five years of saving, I’m looking to put together a new turntable/amp/preamp setup, with a budget of ~$6000.

I’ve been debating between a used Linn Sontek, Technics SL-1210GS, and Rega, but don’t really know where to start with the rest. Is a McIntosh tube setup really worth the additional cost versus, say, an older used McIntosh solid state amp and preamp? Would it be worth it to spend money on the turntable first, alongside a headphone amp to tide me over until I can put more money into an amp?

I’m looking for a setup that’s:
- Reliable
- Works well with a wide range of music (jazz, rock, folk, but mostly all pre-1982)
- Ideally retains value in case I want to sell to upgrade at a later date.
- Doesn’t require endless amounts of tinkering after initial setup.

I’m pretty keen on vintage gear, but it isn’t a strict requirement. (Especially for speakers where newer speakers perform better on the whole afaik)

Thank you!

Ok Comboomer
Oct 20, 2007



Pappyland posted:

Hi all,
After something like five years of saving, I’m looking to put together a new turntable/amp/preamp setup, with a budget of ~$6000.

I’ve been debating between a used Linn Sontek, Technics SL-1210GS, and Rega, but don’t really know where to start with the rest. Is a McIntosh tube setup really worth the additional cost versus, say, an older used McIntosh solid state amp and preamp? Would it be worth it to spend money on the turntable first, alongside a headphone amp to tide me over until I can put more money into an amp?

I’m looking for a setup that’s:
- Reliable
- Works well with a wide range of music (jazz, rock, folk, but mostly all pre-1982)
- Ideally retains value in case I want to sell to upgrade at a later date.
- Doesn’t require endless amounts of tinkering after initial setup.

I’m pretty keen on vintage gear, but it isn’t a strict requirement. (Especially for speakers where newer speakers perform better on the whole afaik)

Thank you!

Instead of a 1200GR (I assume that’s what you meant?) I would honestly save the money and get a 1200 Mk7. Maybe put some of the savings into a really cherry cartridge. But honestly you would have to be a machine to tell the two tables apart.

As for speakers and amps- I’d need to know a bit more. Do you have size constraints/wants? Finish options? You’ve got a healthy budget to work from (esp if you drop the GR and save seven hundo, which you 100% should) so that gives us a lot of room to play.

Just off the top of my head, the Klipsch Heresy 4’s ($3k/pair) are apparently so good, with their new port and lower bass floor, that literally every review I’ve seen is either like “these are keepers” or “I always hated Heresys and then these fuckers showed up to change my mind”.

They’re apparently so good that ZeosPantera bought a pair.

Ok Comboomer fucked around with this message at 11:58 on May 17, 2020

Pappyland
Jun 17, 2004

There's no limit to your imagination!


College Slice

Ok Comboomer posted:

Instead of a 1200GR (I assume that’s what you meant?) I would honestly save the money and get a 1200 Mk7. Maybe put some of the savings into a really cherry cartridge. But honestly you would have to be a machine to tell the two tables apart.
Yep! Meant 1200-GR. Hm. I thought about the MK7; any advantage in switching out the tone arm? Or any other mods?

Ok Comboomer posted:

As for speakers and amps- I’d need to know a bit more. Do you have size constraints/wants? Finish options? You’ve got a healthy budget to work from (esp if you drop the GR and save seven hundo, which you 100% should) so that gives us a lot of room to play.

No horrible size constraints - I’d like to keep it somewhat reasonable (no room for theatre speakers, for instance.)

Ok Comboomer posted:

Just off the top of my head, the Klipsch Heresy 4’s ($3k/pair) are apparently so good, with their new port and lower bass floor, that literally every review I’ve seen is either like “these are keepers” or “I always hated Heresys and then these fuckers showed up to change my mind”.

They’re apparently so good that ZeosPantera bought a pair.

These seem perfect size-wise!

Ok Comboomer
Oct 20, 2007



Pappyland posted:

Yep! Meant 1200-GR. Hm. I thought about the MK7; any advantage in switching out the tone arm? Or any other mods?

I doubt it, you’re spending $1000 on a turntable marketed to professionals and audiophiles with an almost 50-year reputation behind it. Those things are going to be bulletproof no matter which one it is.

While there are obviously real material differences between the different flavors of “new 1200” I seriously can’t imagine that any of them would have a more dramatic effect on your sound than, like, your choice of cartridge or preamp. Hell even spending $700 on wall treatment for your space is probably going to give you an exponentially bigger improvement in sound than messing with the tonearm or bumping up in price.

When you’re spending a grand or more to begin with you just really start butting up against the diminishing returns super quick on sound quality improvements (obviously fit/finish and manufacture method, etc are totally different stories—and the sky’s the limit). There are only so many ways to play a record.

Tone arm mass/material is up there with cables for me in terms of “poo poo audiophiles like to dick measure over that’s probably indistinguishable in a double-blind test.”

Pappyland posted:

These seem perfect size-wise!

You have a lot of options at your price point. I’d also check out the JBL L100 (oh poo poo! JBL also made a smaller version called the L82), JBL 4312 G (or SE if you can get a good deal on them), and maybe the Wharfedale Lintons. I’d check out Zu and Tannoy and lots of other cool weird makers too. If you have the budget/floorspace and the desire for a vintage or interesting aesthetic you’ve got lots of different sound profiles.

It’s definitely worth giving the Heresys a listen if you can before buying them (or I guess you could always demo them at home and send whatever doesn’t make the cut back). They’re bassier than the older models but the consensus is that they’re still not exactly “bassy” and some people (Zeos comes to mind) think you still need a sub with them for those EDM DROPS

large hands
Jan 24, 2006



I would definitely give a pair of Martin Logan electrostatics a listen at that price range.

Ok Comboomer
Oct 20, 2007



large hands posted:

I would definitely give a pair of Martin Logan electrostatics a listen at that price range.

Oh poo poo I forgot Magnepan. Definitely audition them Maggies

Pappyland
Jun 17, 2004

There's no limit to your imagination!


College Slice

large hands posted:

I would definitely give a pair of Martin Logan electrostatics a listen at that price range.

Thanks so far for all these tips! Anything to look at amp/pre-amp wise?

Ok Comboomer
Oct 20, 2007



Pappyland posted:

Thanks so far for all these tips! Anything to look at amp/pre-amp wise?

You mentioned liking vintage and having a thing for McIntosh Tube stuff. Would you prefer a more colored, “warm” sound or is it more about the visual aesthetic (alternatively you could get something like a Schiit Freya+ and kinda sorta have the best of both worlds sound wise).

I guess the big question is do you go integrated or separates?

Pappyland
Jun 17, 2004

There's no limit to your imagination!


College Slice

Ok Comboomer posted:

You mentioned liking vintage and having a thing for McIntosh Tube stuff. Would you prefer a more colored, “warm” sound or is it more about the visual aesthetic (alternatively you could get something like a Schiit Freya+ and kinda sorta have the best of both worlds sound wise).

I guess the big question is do you go integrated or separates?

It's about the colored "warm" sound, for the most part. No preference on integrated or separate, either.

Ok Comboomer
Oct 20, 2007



Pappyland posted:

It's about the colored "warm" sound, for the most part. No preference on integrated or separate, either.

Cool cool. Headphone amp? You got/want/plan to use hard-to-drive cans with that setup?

large hands
Jan 24, 2006



Being a Canadian I'm required to recommend a Bryston 4B power amplifier

Pappyland
Jun 17, 2004

There's no limit to your imagination!


College Slice

Ok Comboomer posted:

Cool cool. Headphone amp? You got/want/plan to use hard-to-drive cans with that setup?

Headphones, yeah. Got some Grado SR-80s, but thinking about some Sennheiser 650s

TheMadMilkman
Dec 10, 2007



A few thoughts:

The Technics SL-1500C is an excellent turntable complete with a phono preamp and a cartridge for $1200. You lose the speed and pitch control, but get a “classier” look.

If you really want to go the fully tubed route, the Rogue Audio Cronus Magnum III runs for $3k. You’ll have all the tube glow you could ever ask for.

The Wharfedale Linton Heritage is a great speaker with a definite vintage look. It does have a pretty substantial bass hump, but I never found it overwhelming when listening to them. For $1500 w/ the record holder stands, I think they’re overall a great deal.

Ok Comboomer
Oct 20, 2007



TheMadMilkman posted:

A few thoughts:

The Technics SL-1500C is an excellent turntable complete with a phono preamp and a cartridge for $1200. You lose the speed and pitch control, but get a “classier” look.

I think the 1500C is frankly a poor value compared to the Mk7 when you consider the price point. At $6k all-in/$1k+ for the turntable/etc whatever amplifier/pre the OP buys should either have a pretty great phono stage or it should be pretty trivial to add an external one if need be.

For $200 you lose some controls (but gain in the aesthetics if you prefer the sleeker look), gain a phono stage which may or may not be superfluous, and they toss in a 2M Red, which retails for $90 and can be had on Fluance turntables costing $450.

Now that’s not necessarily a bad thing, the Red’s an excellent excellent cartridge. If anything those Fluances with Reds and Blues are punching well above their weight. But it doesn’t change the fact that you can also get a $500-600 turntable with a 2M Blue preinstalled, while Technics wants to charge you literally twice the price for a TT with its lower tier sibling.

It feels like Panasonic/Technics made the cart choice for you, but at that TT’s price point I might choose a little higher.

Like maybe I’d go for a 2M Blue or Bronze or a microline or Shibata stylus. It just feels like $80 or $60 or $50 (or however much Panasonic is paying for those Ortofons) that could’ve been saved upfront, because whomever is spending $1200 on a turntable probably has a cartridge already in mind.

VladimirLeninpest
Jun 22, 2005


Fallen Rib

I had the positive wires swapped on my turntable headshell. What sort of weird audio effect would i have had? Everything was still in phase, but channels reversed. Or do both the ground/negative wires work the same?

Ok Comboomer
Oct 20, 2007



General question- if you want to have a 2 turntable setup, aren’t you best off getting something like an analog DJ mixer instead of, say, a preamp? Or at least instead of a phono pre?

Something like this perhaps?: https://www.turntablelab.com/produc...h-xone-23-mixer

GnarlyCharlie4u
Sep 23, 2007

I have an unhealthy obsession with motorcycles.

Proof


I don't even know what preamps exist that have 2 phono inputs, so yeah.
Also that mixer is very nice.

You could also get a rotary mixer for that old-school look, they're considerably more expensive though.
Bozak AR-4, Condesa Lucia, and even the new Rane MP2015 (or slightly older MP2014.)
Or get a rackmount one like the Bozak AR-6 and put it in a case if you want it to pretend to be a normal preamp.

There's also this thing that's the cheapest I could find:
https://www.steinigke.de/en/mpn1035...tary-mixer.html

actually this is on sale for only 300 Euros:
https://www.steinigke.de/en/mpn1035...tary-mixer.html

e: I almost forgot about the Allen & Heath Xone V6
https://www.allen-heath.com/ahproducts/xone-v6/

GnarlyCharlie4u fucked around with this message at 23:40 on May 26, 2020

RIP Paul Walker
Feb 26, 2004



Ok Comboomer posted:

General question- if you want to have a 2 turntable setup, aren’t you best off getting something like an analog DJ mixer instead of, say, a preamp? Or at least instead of a phono pre?

Something like this perhaps?: https://www.turntablelab.com/produc...h-xone-23-mixer

I have two turntables, one goes to the input on my preamp and the other goes to an outboard preamp. They’re not matched TT’s tho.

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polyester concept
Mar 29, 2017



Time to upgrade my Shure m97xe after 8 years of faithful use. I have wanted an AT440MLA for a long time, but it looks like they are succeeded by the newer VM540ML. My main goal is to reduce IGD as much as possible, which I was told the 440 was very good at. I am wondering if I should consider any other cartridges in that price range ($250 usd)?

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