Finest Stereo Setup

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by EdwinL, Sep 10, 2002.

  1. EdwinL

    EdwinL Stunt Coordinator

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    Okay, so here's the story!

    I have been looking for a 'system' for roughly 2 months now, and in fact I was concentrated on a HT reciever to drive a pair of speakers. However, due to my budget and the overwhelming notion of 'do i really need this' I decided to change my approach to it. I wanted a system that could handle all the latestest HT formats as well as preform well in the music department, but have found that there is and can not be a dream A/V reciever. So, I've come to the conclusion that for my budget/need, it would be best to concentrate on music, muSIC, MUSIC! Hi-Fidelity is vital now, and the Budget I had in my for a pre-HT is still in effect.

    This is where you guys come in. Before I had planned to purchase a Marantz SR7200 and pair it with (2) Axiom M22tis or Paradigm Monitor 3s or 7s, and recently, as another member had in mind, B&W 602s.

    Now forget HT, and think of pure 'audiophile' equipment that will fit this budget in a stereo setup. Keep in mind that I would apperciate an array of inputs that include analog/digital formats.

    Thanks fellas!

    P.S. I forgot to mention, despite the fact that I live in Virginia, US, I'm more than willing to pay a bit extra to have imported equipment!

    AND YES, THIS IS CROSS POSTED IN THE SPEAKERS FORUM
     
  2. Geno

    Geno Supporting Actor

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    "pure audiophile" and "budget" are not usually used in the same sentence. Ive read your other posts and have come to the conclusion that you have about $1200 to spend on speakers and a receiver.

    do you need anything else?[cd/dvd player]
     
  3. EdwinL

    EdwinL Stunt Coordinator

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    No. nothing else.
    Look it's like this, i could spend roughly $600-900 on a HT reciever or $600-900 on a stereo reciever. I'm thinking that I will get more bang for the buck if i get a stereo (since that's what the major use is for it) than if I were to get a HT reciever.
    Now as far is speakers go, nothing is written in stone. I'm flexable if not patient.
    My mind set is, if I'm gonna spend money, i want the absolute best i can get for it. If it weren't for this, i woulda walked down to the closest Wal-mart and gotten some Emerson hunk of junk [​IMG]
    that would be bad and despressing considering I know there's SO MUCH MORE.
    thanks for the help!
     
  4. JackS

    JackS Supporting Actor

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    Check the Harmonic Discord web site and go to the Nohr forum. Many hi-end users knowledgable and impressed. The new Se-9 tube preamp and a pair of Le amps should just about wipe out your budget but considered by many to be some of the better bargains in audio. While there go to the Nohr website for some very informative reading. One alternative might be used, but personally, I'd want to buy locally spending this much money.
     
  5. Geno

    Geno Supporting Actor

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    ok, lets keep this simple and talk recivers only.[ but will you need more speakers if you go HT???].
    anyway, yes IMO more bang for the buck if you go stereo. That doesnt mean youll get more use out of it, it will just sound a bit better. IMO the market of HT is driving the cost of HT receivers down and stereo receiver prices are going nowhere. Now you and I know there are so many choices between Emerson and Mark Levinson. I believe that many of the receivers other HTFer's have recomended would make you happy.

    ps have you considered a 2 channel power amp [possibly used]with a lower end HT receiver with preouts? that way, you get the bang and spend less buck.

    again this is all opinionated blurbage, so keep doing research and i think you will come to a happy medium
     
  6. EdwinL

    EdwinL Stunt Coordinator

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    A lower end HT? with a amp? Weren't not going for loud here, we're going for accuracy/fidelity/SWEET sounds. Now I may misunderstand, but that's why i would appreciate digital inputs. I could care less if the amp is gonna drive 300009234-20393W, if it sent a mere 100w-150w with an insane s/n ratio, I'd be more than happy! By the way, I auditioned a H/K AVR520 in stereo mode, and really liked it's performance. Forget 5.1/DD/THX drop all that crap out, and give me a stereo better sounding/processing Reciever/pre amp.

    thanks, keep posting.
     
  7. Geno

    Geno Supporting Actor

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    I would imagine that all of the brands of HT receivers people have recomended also manufacture stereo receivers. go to yamaha, denon, HK, sonyES and see if they have stereo receivers in you budget. then go test them out.
     
  8. EdwinL

    EdwinL Stunt Coordinator

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    Thats it, something like that... anyone else? any others?
     
  9. Geno

    Geno Supporting Actor

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    ps look at Rotel RX-1050 Stereo Receiver
    name should say it all. MSRP is $800
     
  10. EdwinL

    EdwinL Stunt Coordinator

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    AH HA!

    Rotel RC-1090.

    But no digital in. No Digitial Coaxil in. Almost there.

    Now, if I'm right, a pre-amp is a reciever without the tuner right? Or in other words, (i must sound stupid!) a reciever wtithout a tuner would be a pre-amp?

    I wonder if there's one with a decent equalizer out there.

    Again, we're getting close.

    Thanks, and keep it up!
     
  11. Geno

    Geno Supporting Actor

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    a preamp has no amplification qualities. you are thinking of integrated amps.
    I would assume but not for sure that digital ins are used only in HT setups. someone chime in if I am wrong.
     
  12. Chet Wilson

    Chet Wilson Stunt Coordinator

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    A little off the beaten path and maybe a little over the $1200 listed above but a system that will perform:

    Jolida 502B $650+
    Magnepan MMGs $550
    Titanic 10" $350
     
  13. John Royster

    John Royster Screenwriter

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    good stereo performance?

    ditch any notion of a receiver right off the bat. A strong NAD integrated amp or just power amp would be good for power. Slap that with the mmgs and a sub of your choice - BAM, BAM. killer 2-channel performance for the dollar.

    Keep any pre-amp deficiencies out of the mix and just get a good 2-channel amp plus a cd player and speakers. clean, inexpensive, eliminates a pre-amp - did it for years. works wonders.

    So you have a good 2-channel amp, good source, and quality speakers. from there you can build a quality home theater.
     
  14. Scott Oliver

    Scott Oliver Screenwriter

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    Digital inputs will only be found in HT receivers, HT integrateds, HT Processor/preamps or stereo DAC's.

    Personally for your level of spending you would do better for music with a good CD player purchase and using it's DACs vs some HT receiver's DACs.

    With a budget of 600-900 and lots of flexibility, I would look at something like the Rega Mira stereo integrated. This has all sorts of great options plus it has pre-ins and outs so this makes easy to integrate into any system. New the Rega retails for $895 but used can be had for around 5-600.

    Match this piece up with a Rega Planet CD player and you would have some fine stereo listening.

    In terms of how you would incorporate it into a HT is just buy a HT receiver or processor with pre-outs and run the front two channels into the pre-ins on the Mira. This would bypass preamp functions of Mira when this input is selected

    Other stereo integrateds that would be nice but maybe without as much flexibility available for 900 or less, some new, some used:
    Kora Mercury and Explorer
    Blue Circle CS
    Audio Refinement Complete
    Classe Cap-150
    Anthem Integrated 2
    Consonance
    Jolida
    Antique Sound Lab
    Roksan
    Audio Analogue
    Arcam
     
  15. Dave Simpson

    Dave Simpson Second Unit

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    Edwin,
    If you can live without the digital ins and outs, and stick with a first-rate CD player, then I suggest you spend far less than you would on a contemporary receiver or integrated amp, and receive hitherto unheard of performance. The answer lies in vintage audio gear. This will require some patience and leg-work on your part, but the dividends paid will more than make it worthwhile. I suggest a mid to high power reciever made in the mid to late 70s by Marantz, Pioneer, Sansui, or perhaps Kenwood, paired with a capable set of today's monitors (or floor-standers). Receivers of the sort I suggest are readily available on E-Bay, and you can also check your local flea-markets and thrift shops. Check these sites for info on vintage gear: AudioKarma, Classic-Audio, and the similarily named Classic Audio.
    Best of luck with whatever gear you wind up getting. Cheers!
    DS.
     
  16. Yee-Ming

    Yee-Ming Producer

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    Yee Ming Lim
    FWIW, I have a Marantz SR8200 and am quite happy with it; I A/B tested it extensively at the shop against the SR7200 before buying, playing CDs on a plain DVD player and using coax outs and therefore the internal DACs in the receivers. I felt the 8200 did slightly better than the 7200, with crisper cymbals in particular and just all-round better imaging and detail.
    the other day, I tried connectng the analog outs from my DVD player, a Phillips Q30 (an entry level player), and A/B compared it to the SR8200's DACs -- my usual set-up is to let the player output digital to the SR8200 and let the receiver do the conversion, but I was curious.
    my tin ears detected no difference. but I must state for the record I am not an audiophile and do not have extensive experience in listening to hifi equipment.
    the salesman at the shop had suggested that if I was concerned about stereo performance, it would have been better to stick with the 7200 (which was good enough) and to spend the difference on a decent CD player, and to use the CD player's DAC. which is of course what Dave is recommending here. me, I haven't really formed an opinion either way yet [​IMG]
     
  17. Manuel Delaflor

    Manuel Delaflor Supporting Actor

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    EdwinL,
    As others have said, really Hi-End equipment is expensive, however the results worth it. My vote goes to this beauty:
    [​IMG]
    Margules Hybrid Integrated Amplifier
    Add used Klipsch Heresy's and you will got an amazing system at a decent price, and with possibilities of interesting easy upgrades!
     

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