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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 4:17 am 
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Location: Montreal, QC, CA
When I was a kid my father got a tube system and gave the old family stereo to the two boys. It was a Viking, a rebranded Electrohome perhaps, with a Garrard changer, a single oval speaker... and a tube amp in it. We loved that thing, we had a record collection and probably what we played most often was The Kingston Trio and Roger Voisin playing the classical trumpet. I mention that to show that the interest has always been there.

Haven't always been as lucky as I am today. My mother got a small inheritance and bought me a Dyna tube amp kit. I had that for a couple of years... without anything else. While I was at boarding school in England I picked up a pair of Wharfedale drivers and memorized Gilbert Briggs' Cabinet Handbook. Back in Canada I had enclosure pieces cut and got an Elac changer. That system was stolen. My GF had insurance and she kept the replacement. Hard to take, but she did claim for my guitar.

I worked briefly at a Toronto high-end store in the early seventies. I got a loan on an insurance policy to pay for the best speakers, amp and turntable I could swing. That system went to my ex-wife. I went back to school and had to give up on music for 5 years. I started thinking about it again when I found UHF Magazine, back when it was Hi-Fi Sound.

The rest of it is a continuous process of learning what good gear does for music and how to find a deal on the used market. The best help comes from friends, people who know more than I do. If you want a clear description of how it works, read Gerard Rejskind's book, The UHF Guide to High Fidelity. There's a chapter near the back which shows how to start with the best you can afford, plan your upgrades and wind up with your dream system. I must have read it fifty times.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 5:02 am 
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Location: Freelton, ON, CA
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No one questions you for having a $30 000 car that is just a toy but if you tell someone that you just paid $3 000 for an amplifier they will think that you are crazy.


i would question that. you have your numbers reversed, it should be $30000 for the amp and $3000 for the car :lol: :lol: :lol:


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 5:05 am 
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Location: St catherine, QC, CA
Toby wrote:
When I was a kid my father got a tube system and gave the old family stereo to the two boys. It was a Viking, a rebranded Electrohome perhaps, with a Garrard changer, a single oval speaker... and a tube amp in it. We loved that thing, we had a record collection and probably what we played most often was The Kingston Trio and Roger Voisin playing the classical trumpet. I mention that to show that the interest has always been there.

Haven't always been as lucky as I am today. My mother got a small inheritance and bought me a Dyna tube amp kit. I had that for a couple of years... without anything else. While I was at boarding school in England I picked up a pair of Wharfedale drivers and memorized Gilbert Briggs' Cabinet Handbook. Back in Canada I had enclosure pieces cut and got an Elac changer. That system was stolen. My GF had insurance and she kept the replacement. Hard to take, but she did claim for my guitar.

I worked briefly at a Toronto high-end store in the early seventies. I got a loan on an insurance policy to pay for the best speakers, amp and turntable I could swing. That system went to my ex-wife. I went back to school and had to give up on music for 5 years. I started thinking about it again when I found UHF Magazine, back when it was Hi-Fi Sound.

The rest of it is a continuous process of learning what good gear does for music and how to find a deal on the used market. The best help comes from friends, people who know more than I do. If you want a clear description of how it works, read Gerard Rejskind's book, The UHF Guide to High Fidelity. There's a chapter near the back which shows how to start with the best you can afford, plan your upgrades and wind up with your dream system. I must have read it fifty times.


Man you're not lucky with the women's in your life, if my wife took my system she would join the fishes in a sleeping bag and NO i'm not kidding i don't mind splitting three quarters for me and one quarter for her but the system no way it's part of my three quarters. :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D

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Chord CPM-2600 integrated amplifier - Chord One cd player - Acoustat 1+1 speakers
Life without Acoustat is possible BUT i wouldn't dare.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 5:14 am 
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Location: Nobleton, ON, CA
A lot of luck and a lot of research. Most of my equipment is used. I scoured the listings and found the hidden gems. Some of my gear was just given to me by really nice people. That's how I got "seriously" started.

A really nice gent gave me a Technics SP-10MK2A. We were just talking audio one day up at a cottage. I was told to ask him about what turntable I should look for as I was in the market. We talked for a bit then he said, "You know I have an old Technics direct drive collecting dust. If you want it you can have it." So I said sure. A few months later we are meeting in a parking lot and we are loading the SP-10 in to the back of my car. I still didn't know what I had as I was still clueless. After some reaserch I was freaking out!! Couldn't believe what I had just been given.

I'm currently waitng on 2 Luxman M-05's to be repaired that I picked up cheap because they weren't working. One should be ready sometime this week!!! Can't wait.

My speakers, Angstrom Triads, were a good deal. No one knew what they were as they are extreamly rare. They had been up for sale for a while and no one touched them. The Triads were made to sound exatcly like KEF 105's.

So my advice is. Make good contacts through CAM, keep your eyes and ears open, reaserch and be patient. Good things will happen.

Andrew


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 5:30 am 
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Location: Burlington, ON, CA
Started with about $25,000 invested in new home theatre gear 8 years ago (mostly bought new) and in my constant quest to upgrade, equipment that sounded great with music tended to sound great for home theatre. The more I auditioned gear with this in mind, the more I was drawn into music and eventually came to the conclusion that even the best home theatre processor was left wanting in terms of pure 2 channel performance against the likes of a mid-priced integrated amp. I eventually found a great and helpful dealer who set me on my 2 channel path and eventually started selling all my home theatre gear in favour of 2 channel.

I've made a ton of mistakes along the way, and my original $25,000 expenditure has long been erased but I have had a blast along the way with loads of different and excellent pieces of gear in and out of my system over the past 8 years. Stuff from the likes of Naim, Exposure, Audio Note, Bryston, Arcam, LFD, YBA, Densen, Linn, Sunfire, McIntosh, Conrad Johnson, Totem, Quad, B&W, Klipsch Aurum Cantus, Elac, PMC, Harbeth, Kef etc. have all been through my system and as this is pretty much my only personal expenditure, I don't mind the all the money spent as I have enjoyed each piece and learned a lot about what sounds good to me, as opposed to what others recommend.

By the way - for home theatre, I now run a simple 3.1 setup powered by an inexpensive Pioneer Elite receiver that I picked up on sale from Audio One. Sounds great :)


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 5:39 am 
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Location: Amherstburg, ON, CA
1. Saved my sheckles.
2. Took advantage of a generous trade in and trade up program at my local dealer. (Audio Two)
3. Won the playoff pool at work.

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-"Life is too short to listen to shitty music"


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 5:50 am 
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Location: St catherine, QC, CA
RJ BUX wrote:
1. Saved my sheckles.
2. Took advantage of a generous trade in and trade up program at my local dealer. (Audio Two)
3. Won the playoff pool at work.



QUOTE: -"Life is too short to listen to shitty music"

That's why good hardware is NOTHING without good SOFTWARE. GI = GO

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Life without Acoustat is possible BUT i wouldn't dare.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 5:57 am 
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Posts: 305
Location: Thunder Bay, ON, CA
I am very much like Newmusic and tohifi.
I'm very frugal by nature.
My SO and I worked 4 jobs for a year and then 3 for several years. Paid off my student loan and built up some savings.
We rarely eat out so we cook everything which saves a lot of money, and it's healthier too. We enjoy red wine so I make my own from grapes, again saving loads of money.
Most of my gear is used or demo clear outs. Patience is the key to getting a good deal. I have been at this for over 20 years with very gradual improvements.
I've traded equipment to get what I want as well.
For example I was in Phoenix Arizona on vacation and I wandered into a Guitar Center store and happened upon a half price sale on Dynaudio BM5A's. I bought a pair for $600. They were much better than my existing passive speakers I was using for my video system so I traded these speakers for a Dynavector MC cartridge. For $600 out of pocket I have better sound in my video system and better sound from my turntable, something I could live with forever.
My main system would cost at least 50% more if I purchased brand new.
I still use an Apple Powerbook that I bought refurbished and for less than half price at the time.
I don't drive a fancy car either and I buy my office clothing at discount retailers.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 6:17 am 
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Location: burlington, ON, CA
It is not only about the money. The money is huge yes. Just as important is the way one learns to listen. I used to live on a farm house over 35 years ago in the middle of no where so I could blast my big speaker system. Today I have learned to listen near field from 6 to 7 to 8 to 9 feet away. Also to listen to low spl with high power and lots and lots of coil (speaker drivers). If I was single today I would live in a small home and use a combination of ribbon midrange, plasma tweeter and build the woofer horns into the basement (huge!). I would not listen loud as the horns would shake the place apart. It would however be realistic and sadly I do not know anyone with a system like this.

Forgot to mention I would strip out all the walls for an open concept and run the ceiling up to the bottom of the rafters and that is where I would die of old age (one could only hope).


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 6:31 am 
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Location: Montreal, QC, CA
MrAcoustat wrote:
Man you're not lucky with the women's in your life, if my wife took my system she would join the fishes in a sleeping bag


So that's what they mean by "sleeping with the fishes" ! :D

The big advantage of having lost a couple of systems is it makes it easier to be grateful for what I do have, and perhaps easier to say goodbye when eventually I have to give it up. :roll:


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 6:37 am 
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Location: Markham, ON, CA
After been fooled by so many audio equipment manufactures I decided to take the law in my own hands, not being loyal to a particular brand or stereo store, anymore.
Started buying used out of the 'Buy and Sell'.
My dealers have always sold me the line they carry, which nothing is wrong with, but never really understood my needs.
What I really learned in this process from my dealers is that if they do not carry that particular line of equipment, then that equipment is no good.
So I became my own dealer and that is how I ended up with both fantastic 2 channel audio playback.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 7:46 am 
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Location: Georgetown, ON, CA
J. P. wrote:
Buy used on CAM :D :wink:
jp



X2

I do not not have the biggest budget for audio gear anymore (Married with two kids now) but buying used on CAM has allowed me to put together a very nice system on a budget. I never buy New anymore. If you are patient you can find ANY item on CAM or Audiogon.


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 7:53 am 
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Location: Fort McMurray, AB, CA
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I don't want a new car


When I met my wife .... she actually had a turntable and about 200 records ... so good start..... I told her we would never spend more than $20k on a car .. but would eventually have a stereo worth twice that.... got no resistance... we both love music... live and recorded.

Had a Benchmark DAC for awhile ... sold it to finance something else.... when it was gone and things sonically subtracted for a bit ... she got "it" ... now she is involved in the research choices right down to eventually flying to California on an audio tinged vacation to hear som PBN's ... ATC's ... PMC's ... and whatever else we may decide to check out... I am a lucky man.

If people want to drive Escalades and have a Bose Wave system... let em... it ain't us... life is all about choices.

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"The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There's also a negative side." Hunter S. Thompson


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 8:03 am 
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Location: Burlington, ON, CA
Buying used on CAM has been fantastic and has allowed me to "home demo" gear that I would not have the opportunity to do otherwise. I suspect the same holds true for most CAM members as well. Listening to something at a dealer is one thing, but being able to live with something in your system for an extended amount of time is something else. Many of the items I have bought are not even easily found at local dealers and by buying used, I can typically flip those pieces that don't work for little or no loss.

I just set up a second system based on pieces I always wanted to try, such as a pair of Quad ESL speakers, and as a result, it has become my main listening system. Don't you just love when things like that work out :)


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 08, 2011 9:29 am 
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Posts: 94
Location: toronto, ON, CA
saved for it, no point going into debt for a hobby

buy what you can afford, then if you want later, upgrade, the used market is great for this, if you buy nice gear and take care of it you can get most of your money back.

there is also a lot of trial and error, some speakers work well in some rooms or with certain amps, some do not. i


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