A Lark Ascending

High-end hi-fi is like anti-wrinkle cream

44 posts in this topic

14 minutes ago, BillF said:

Lump sum?

Don't understand! 

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1 minute ago, A Lark Ascending said:

Don't understand! 

Perhaps Teachers' Pensions have changed since I started on mine.^_^

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My alternative to going to New Zealand, on a cruise etc which seem to be what most middle class people seem to do on retirement. Can't complain at the pension (4/5ths of what I was earning in my last pay check and I don't have to mark a single book!). 

Edit: Ah, I've just decoded it. Did I use my lump sum? No, just some of my 'rainy day' money that has built up over the years without any major rainy days (watch the roof blow off in the current storm now). 

Edited by A Lark Ascending

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Reminder to self to get the LP12 re-based in recycled vintage single malt whisky barrels..

4122.jpg?w=1920&q=85&auto=format&sharp=1:lol:

Edited by sidewinder

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Can't imagine this would have any WAF:

2953.jpg?w=700&q=85&auto=format&sharp=10

Like having reconditioned daleks in the room. I assume the cushion covers come with the £200 000.

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1 hour ago, A Lark Ascending said:

Can't imagine this would have any WAF:

2953.jpg?w=700&q=85&auto=format&sharp=10

Like having reconditioned daleks in the room. I assume the cushion covers come with the £200 000.

I guess the thinking was - 'we've designed these incredibly ugly, huge pieces of equipment so why not improve things by finishing them off in the kind of colour usually found in a baby's nappy'!

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2 hours ago, A Lark Ascending said:

Can't imagine this would have any WAF:

2953.jpg?w=700&q=85&auto=format&sharp=10

Like having reconditioned daleks in the room. I assume the cushion covers come with the £200 000.

That red bust must be where Lon stores his new $1000 headphones. ;)

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3 hours ago, A Lark Ascending said:

Can't imagine this would have any WAF:

2953.jpg?w=700&q=85&auto=format&sharp=10

 

Wilson's barely have any HAF! I've heard they sound unbelievable, but even I wouldn't want such ugly fucking monstrosities in my home. 

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I'm reading this thread while listening through Sennheiser HD415 headphones to a 1950's Blakey/Jazz Messengers CD playing on my Sony boombox.  This is what I use to listen while I work every day.  Total cost of system  - under $100.   Works OK for me and my 61-year-old ears, though I wouldn't turn down a high-end system if someone gave it to me.

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It makes sense to have high-end hi-fi stores in the suburbs: it's a niche market, the buyer is not going to be a casual browser and walk into the shop and make an impulsive purchase on a 60 grand system. It's sensible, especially somewhere like Crewe where you have a good catchment area in Cheshire, Wales and North of Birmngham withought having to pay top dollar for rent. Also those in the city districts, certainly here in the Netherlands and in a city like the Hague, will have serious sound proof issues and very likely not be in a detached house. The canny audiophile will have moved out long ago!

It was an interesting article and along with the Russian Prime Minister, I also have Naim system. It is well worth the initial investment: I get what I want from CD's without thinking I am missing vinyl. At least when I don't wear headphones, but I am looking to upgrade on that and hopefully high-end Grado will deliver on that.

Interestingly, I was speaking to those in the hi-fi shop I use and they sell some serious gear, the last time I was in they were setting a system for an audition that was being sold for 70 grand Euros. I asked them who buys all the good audiophile gear and they replied it was owners of Dutch businesses, expat Brits and those who are willing to suffer for their hi-fi experience with foregoing of holidays and decent cars. 

 

 

 

 

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All for an audio system that may have a small improvement in performance over a $3,000, $5,000, $10,000, or $15,000 system. 

Kinda sad more than anything. I'm glad I stopped chasing the rainbow before I started pissing away big time bucks. 

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Yes, but up to a certain level there will be a noticeable sound quality improvement, depending on source material of course. A bit like wine I suppose, once you go over a certain price, you're purchasing rarirty and provenance and not necessary exquisite taste and lack of sulphate inducing hangovers. 

The mission is, to go as far as you can go in sound perfection, within your price range. 

But I have to say, if I had the cash and inclination, I would spend money on a frivolous super hi-end hi-fi before I would ever spend money on a super car. You would ultimately get more mileage from the hi-end hi-fi set-up. All academic of course.

 

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I wouldn't say "noticeable". 

Once you hit the, let's say, $1,000 mark the sound improvements become dramatically smaller and more incremental. Once you hit the $7,500-$10,000 range, you may as well just call it quits. After that you're adding grains of sand to an hour glass. If that. 

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^Nice one, I know how hard those top floor apartments are to come by!

I am also fortunate as we purchased a house whose previous owner had a musical room for his daughter which was nearly sound proofed with double glazing on the inside and that's now my music room. Nothing to the side of it either, so all in all, I am on a winner especially in the Randstad.

For an urban people, you see the best standard of living and the very best of what the Netherlands has to offer when you get out into some of the suburbs and especially the cycle lines - for an extreme density of people what has been achieved is really quite wonderful in terms of creating space and access into to green heart via cycle lines.  It's what the UK could and should have been. Of course, the UK has the best world class country lanes, no other country I know has the same diversity of getting somewhere by several road routes.

 

 

 

 

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Ahhh, I live in one of those lovely old city houses. Build in 1906, it has loads of character and apeal (personately I definately wouldn't want to live in a newly build house, this stage of my life), but it is indeed very poorly isolated sound wise. Living on the ground floor, we have neigbours on the left, right, and two above us. When I went looking for my hi-fi equipment, producing a detailed sound at not so high levels was one of my main concerns. During daytime I have my levels up at a (what I consider) normal level, and after 21:30 we agreed with all the neigbours we keep our volume of stereo's/TV's etc low, which means for me I always listen to my music on headphones in the evening.

 

Edited by niels

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6 hours ago, Scott Dolan said:

All for an audio system that may have a small improvement in performance over a $3,000, $5,000, $10,000, or $15,000 system. 

Kinda sad more than anything. I'm glad I stopped chasing the rainbow before I started pissing away big time bucks. 

Absolutely. I've recently spent around $7,500 on a decent audio/video system and I'm very pleased with the sound quality. However, I'm unlikely to want to upgrade further with ludicrously expensive cables etc. You reach a level where you're happy with the sound quality you have and, as importantly, the flexibility of the various sound sources you need.

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I started my serious music listening on an 8-track player and a Realistic turntable.  Later I upgraded to a car cassette player, where the fidelity was even worse ?

Today $4-5k buys a system that sounds state of the art to me.  Fortunately there aren't any good higher end retailers in town to "experiment" with spending more ?

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I had a truly great system for about 18 months back in the late 70s, but then my apartment got broke into and it got stolen. Since then, I've tried to - for decades -  to duplicate natural listening conditions as much as possible. As fate would ahve it, Brenda didn't dig all the smoking and drinking, the raised hearth isn't deep enough for a drum set, and we don't have room - or money - for a concert hall in the back yard. So, Color Me Frustrated (if you must color me at all, that is).

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I'm down to my all-in-one cd/amp/streamer, speakers, a set of noise-cancelling head phones and a cheap Project record deck for accessing old vinyl I still have. Oh, and a CD-Recorder I bought 20 years back. Total comes to just over £2700 (however I do have 11 iPods!!!!). Can't see me going beyond that.  

However, my spending on recordings knows no limit.... 

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1 hour ago, A Lark Ascending said:

I'm down to my all-in-one cd/amp/streamer, speakers, a set of noise-cancelling head phones and a cheap Project record deck for accessing old vinyl I still have. Oh, and a CD-Recorder I bought 20 years back. Total comes to just over £2700 (however I do have 11 iPods!!!!). Can't see me going beyond that.  

However, my spending on recordings knows no limit.... 

11 iPods? That prompts the same sort of question put to women on why they need so many pairs of shoes when they only have two feet.

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5 minutes ago, Jazzjet said:

11 iPods? That prompts the same sort of question put to women on why they need so many pairs of shoes when they only have two feet.

I just kept filling them up. I live in a middle terraced house so have to be careful with noise - I tend to work off an iPod until about 11.00 a.m when there is little danger of noise leaking through into the neighbouring houses that will be active by then. Great for gardening and walking (yes, I know I should be aurally communing with nature!). Also the most convenient way to take music in the car.

As a student I used to visit my parents living in Germany with a small case of clothes and one of those giant LP carriers (My right arm is now longer than the left). As a result the MP3 player is my idea of heaven. A huge chunk of your record collection accessible anywhere, any time. I just have to make sure I bring the right one/s with me.  

I'm hoping Apple relent and bring back the Classic. I'm OK for a while, but...

 

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7 hours ago, Eric said:

I started my serious music listening on an 8-track player and a Realistic turntable.  Later I upgraded to a car cassette player, where the fidelity was even worse ?

Today $4-5k buys a system that sounds state of the art to me.  Fortunately there aren't any good higher end retailers in town to "experiment" with spending more ?

You've got no high end stores in Kansas City? That's odd. St. Louis has at least one or two. 

And Lark, 11 iPods!!! You spent as much as those as most people do their entire listening system! :lol:

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With the exception of my OPPO player and Anthem amplifier; I've bought all my stereo gear second hand...although I did buy an OEM tonearm upgrade for my second hand systemdek IIx table.  Anyway my point is a good system can be hand via exploring the second hand market.  Rich audiophiles don't tend to care about getting top dollar for their 2 year old gear when they upgrade to the latest and greatest!

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