Author Topic: New member, old 'phile...  (Read 2506 times)

Offline Alphecca

  • FNG !!!
  • *
  • Posts: 6
    • View Profile
New member, old 'phile...
« on: April 12, 2016, 10:37:19 PM »
...or is "audiophile" considered pretentious around here?  Anyway, I'm a native Pittsburgher, still here, and have been serious about audio since around '79 or so.  Back then, I thought I knew everything...watts and woofers ruled the world.  Didn't have any money, though, so I'd look through the classifieds in the newspaper for used gear (I couldn't afford any of that, either, but it seemed more plausible).  Came across an advertisement for an Audio Pulse Model 1 being sold at a place called Opus One.  As I recall, it claimed to make mono sound better than stereo.  Knowing everything as I did, I was sure this was impossible, but they seemed serious...plus, I was curious to visit a store I'd never heard of (especially one that wasn't Wander Sales or The Appliance Store).  So I got my big sister to help me find it.  It was kind of a shock to see a store full of stuff I'd never heard of, with the possible exception of Kenwood.  Tandberg? Dahlquist? Advent? Revox? DUAL? (Okay, I may have heard of them, too).  I never did hear the AP Model 1, but there was a used/consignment section...so, again, some things that seemed potentially affordable.  I started going in every few weeks or so, trying to figure this place out.  I was about 15, so I didn't ask many questions, figuring I wouldn't be taken seriously...though no one seemed to mind me hanging around.
   Then, one day, I heard a piano playing...and the thought that came to me wasn't, "Wow, that really sound like a piano".  The thought that came to me was, "I didn't know there was a piano in here"...and I went to look for it.  And that was it for me.  The moment I realized I'd been COMPLETELY fooled by a pair of DQ10s, I was hooked.
  My background is in electronics and computer programming, though I did have the somewhat disillusioning opportunity to work at Opus One's Sewickley store for about a year in '88, not long before they closed.
  I don't change gear much.  Back before I (or many other people, based on the prices) knew any better, I bought a Dynaco PAS-3X and a PAIR of Stereo 70s for about a $100 (a the time, I didn't really want that "old tube stuff", but it was all I could afford...sigh).  I also found a new DUAL 1225 for which I had to build a cabinet (it actually included a template for this).  A friend at KDKA got me a Stanton 500AL for it.  I'd made some speakers in woodshop...pretty sure they had nothing in common.  Before long, though, I replaced them with some Boston Acoustic A60s, and the PAS3 was traded on a Rappaport Pre-1A.  I sold one of the ST70s ("Why would I need 2??") for about $40, and used the other for a long while.  Finally, I had an "opportunity" to go all solid state! Found a good price on a pair of Kenwood Purist Monoblocks.  Can't remember what I sold the second ST70 for, but it was closer to $100, since I'd put a matched quad of Telefunkens in it.   I think my first CD player was a Nikko.
  In '85, I got my first real job, and the first thing I did was put money on a pair of Spica TC-50s, gloss black finish.  I was pretty friendly with the Opus One  staff , and we were told that only 50 pairs were ever made in this finish, and that Opus One got them all.  I'd love to know if it's true.  I picked up a pair of Spica Servo Subs over time, and during my stint selling audio, I enjoyed a dealer discount on a SONY ES CD player.  Somewhere in there, I also upgraded the 1225 for another DUAL, a CS 5000 with a Sonus Blue Gold.
  Okay, this is getting long, isn't it?  The table remains, but the Sonus went for an AT440ML, and is soon to become a Clearaudio Virtuoso Wood, thanx to the generosity of a friend and fellow forum member.  I still have the SONY CD, though I currently use it with a MUSILAND MD10 DAC.  The Rappaport was replaced by a B&K Pro10 MC, and amplification is a Rotel RB-980BX.  Cables are Kimber.
  All of this has been under wraps since '06, when, just before my daughter was born, I figured that I (with no experience doing construction) could remodel the listening room in the basement "in no time".  It's still not done...but it's actually getting close.  And, in spite of the fact that I've left a room in our house torn up for 10 years, my wife felt bad enough that I was without an audio system that she suggested that I assemble it (probably without the subs, for space reasons) in the living space in the attic.  To that end, I've been unpacking, and cleaning, and installing a decent outlet, and tweaking...getting ready for the big day when I get to hear my TC50s work their magic once more (though, it must be said, the room I have them in is far from optimal...but I expect that, after 10 years, they're gonna sound pretty damned good to my ears).

Plans?  I've been ripping CDs (purchased and kept, BTW) to a PC in the basement, to act as a music server.  I plan to use my laptop to feed the MUSILAND DAC via USB as my primary digital source.  I have some "Audio Asylum" power cords I put together, but I need a few more, and so does my buddy...so we're assembling a few different components, try a few combinations, and see what we like best.  I've also got a homebrew version of the Bright Star isolation platform that I'm wanting to finish up and try...should be helpful on our rickety attic floor.  The next big thing I'm really planning, though, is some Maggies.  I've only heard them a few times, but I've always enjoyed the sound of planars.  And, I really wanna get some more tubes in there, somewhere.

I have to finish the listening room first, though.

Thanx for joining me on the trip down memory lane...if anyone's still with me.  This is probably the only place anyone might actually read all this.

Looking forward to being a regular reader, and contributor...if I can.

Michael
DUAL CS 5000 with Clearaudio Virtuoso Wood/ATN95VL Hybrid; ASUS laptop/ifi idac2; B&K Pro10MC; Rotel RB-980BX; Spica TC50s with Spica subs; Kimber Hero & 8TC

Offline Sir Thrift-a-Lot

  • Ready For Intervention!
  • ******
  • Posts: 2762
    • View Profile
Re: New member, old 'phile...
« Reply #1 on: April 12, 2016, 11:17:15 PM »
Welcome!   Let me know how your friend likes that table.

Offline F1nut

  • Ball Buster
  • *****
  • Posts: 539
    • View Profile
Re: New member, old 'phile...
« Reply #2 on: April 13, 2016, 01:14:35 AM »
Welcome!
  'Political Correctness'.........defined

"A doctrine fostered by a delusional, illogical minority and rabidly promoted by an unscrupulous mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a turd by the clean end."
 

Offline geoffr

  • Double Secret Probation!
  • **
  • Posts: 131
    • View Profile
Re: New member, old 'phile...
« Reply #3 on: April 13, 2016, 05:14:49 AM »
Welcome. I bought Spicas from Opus One and remember them fondly.
Living room: Fisher 400, Thorens TD124, Arcam CD, Klipsch Heresy
Home office: Scott 222c, Rega P25, Marantz CD, Omega 3T desktop speakers and Deep Hemp sub
Basement: Rogue Cronus, Meadowlark Kestrel, Thorens TD160, Rotel CD

Offline papabearjew

  • Musicholic, Instigator
  • Ready For Intervention!
  • ******
  • Posts: 1048
    • View Profile
Re: New member, old 'phile...
« Reply #4 on: April 13, 2016, 12:21:39 PM »
Welcome to the group. Where are you from?

Offline Alphecca

  • FNG !!!
  • *
  • Posts: 6
    • View Profile
Re: New member, old 'phile...
« Reply #5 on: April 13, 2016, 02:12:38 PM »
I'm from Aspinwall, originally...'live out near the Pittsburgh Mills, now.  'Work in Oakland.
DUAL CS 5000 with Clearaudio Virtuoso Wood/ATN95VL Hybrid; ASUS laptop/ifi idac2; B&K Pro10MC; Rotel RB-980BX; Spica TC50s with Spica subs; Kimber Hero & 8TC

Offline Mongojustpawn

  • Double Secret Probation!
  • **
  • Posts: 190
  • Mongo Like Choo-Choo!
    • View Profile
Re: New member, old 'phile...
« Reply #6 on: April 13, 2016, 04:29:27 PM »
Welcome to the group
Welcome Back My Friends, To The Show That Never Ends

Offline OldiesButGoodies

  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Posts: 2419
  • Be nice, it is free!
    • View Profile
Re: New member, old 'phile...
« Reply #7 on: April 13, 2016, 07:02:07 PM »
Hi Michael - welcome to the forum and thank you for crafting a thorough chronology of your audio history - I for one enjoyed reading it. 

I purchased a pair of Spica TC-60s new as part of a discounted 'group buy' during the early days of the internet (some time in 1995, 24 audio geeks coordinated through an early audio classifieds web site to buy 25 pars of TC-60s, me included).  Great speakers,  loved the imaging and sound-stage.  I eventually gifted them to my brother,  but later on purchased a pair of used TC-50s and another pair of TC-60s.  A pair of TC-60s survive in storage back in PR where I come from, to be resuscitated by one of our kids some day when they discover good sound.

I have kept tabs on Spica stuff ever since and can testify that I never heard of TC-50s in piano black,  so what you have there is pretty rare, IMO.   

Thanks again for joining,

OBG

Spkr: VMPS RM40
Pre: McCormack RLD-1, Rotel 970BX Phono
Amps: Channel Islands Audio D-200 MkII 
Phono: VPI Aries 1,  Van de Hul Frog
CD: Oppo BDP-83 DAC: Young DSD DAC
Cass: Tascam 122MkII
R2R: Revox B77
Sub: Rhythmik FV 15HP

Offline Sir Thrift-a-Lot

  • Ready For Intervention!
  • ******
  • Posts: 2762
    • View Profile
Re: New member, old 'phile...
« Reply #8 on: April 13, 2016, 10:31:13 PM »
I had a pair of Spica SC-50s.   Bought them at a garage sale in Gibsonia for fiddy cent (yes, really, that's what I paid, that's what the seller was asking).   Didn't know a thing about then except they looked cool and two quarters wasn't much of a gamble if they sucked.   I played them for a year and a half then got $159 on eBay for them.   The buyer was thrilled.

Offline MacGeek

  • Ready For Intervention!
  • ******
  • Posts: 1102
    • View Profile
Re: New member, old 'phile...
« Reply #9 on: April 14, 2016, 12:12:55 AM »
Welcome, Michael.  I enjoyed your trip down memory lane.  I don't dare write mine-too much gear and a few more years.  To what do Lyon like  to listen?  Have you seen the Forum post about the Memorial weekend hi-if swap meet?
MAC C-46 pre, MQ 108 eq, MC 352 amps (2), MR 78 tuner, MCD 500 CD, MPI-4 scope, LS 352 speakers, Sony HDR-F1HD AM/FM/HD tuner, Denon DRS 810 cassette, Denon CDR-W1500 CD recorder, Music Hall MMF-9 w/B&O MMC2, Revox A-77 R to R.

Offline ataudio

  • Double Secret Probation!
  • **
  • Posts: 201
    • View Profile
Re: New member, old 'phile...
« Reply #10 on: April 14, 2016, 08:15:16 PM »
Welcome Michael.  I enjoyed your bio very much.  Many similarities to mine. I used to take the bus to Opus One. Always a
Fun day hangingout  and listening to stuff I couldn't afford.  Bought my Belles pre/power amp there.  A PS Audio too.
The Spicas were revolutionary speakers in my book.  Very very very few speaker manufacturers care about
phase relationship.  My last three pairs were all time aligned phase coherent speakers.  Sadly, I no longer own them.


Augie

Offline Alphecca

  • FNG !!!
  • *
  • Posts: 6
    • View Profile
Re: New member, old 'phile...
« Reply #11 on: April 14, 2016, 10:49:18 PM »
STaL:  That's an impressive score on the SC30s.  I remember seeing them at Opus once or twice, but never heard them.  Extremely rare, I'm sure.

MacGeek: I have fairly diverse music tastes.  I enjoy a lot of classic rock, but don't care for "oldies".  A fair amount of pop, I guess.  For a long while, I didn't pay much attention to it, but I've realized that there are some viable talents around today.  I LOVE a good female vocal.  Not a big fan of "classic" jazz, but very much enjoy Flim and the BB's and similar...not sure how they'd be categorized.  While not a connoisseur, there's plenty of classical and orchestral music I enjoy...and I have quite a few film scores.  I also enjoy a smattering of electronica. 

ataudio: I remember the Belles stuff we had in the store...I often wish I'd bought some.  I have to agree about phase-coherence being often overlooked. 
DUAL CS 5000 with Clearaudio Virtuoso Wood/ATN95VL Hybrid; ASUS laptop/ifi idac2; B&K Pro10MC; Rotel RB-980BX; Spica TC50s with Spica subs; Kimber Hero & 8TC

Offline Kingman

  • Southern Commander
  • *****
  • Posts: 2860
  • OCCD...I GOT IT BADD!!!!!!!!!
    • View Profile
Re: New member, old 'phile...
« Reply #12 on: April 15, 2016, 05:56:02 AM »
Hi Michael! Great story! Welcome!
IN REALITY IT ONLY MATTERS WHAT IT SOUNDS LIKE TO YOU!!!!!

Offline MacGeek

  • Ready For Intervention!
  • ******
  • Posts: 1102
    • View Profile
Re: New member, old 'phile...
« Reply #13 on: April 15, 2016, 07:13:12 AM »
Alphecca-our tastes are similar.  I'll add Big Band and delete the electronica.  Lately, I have been exploring Country a bit.  There are some outstanding musicians playing in that genre.
MAC C-46 pre, MQ 108 eq, MC 352 amps (2), MR 78 tuner, MCD 500 CD, MPI-4 scope, LS 352 speakers, Sony HDR-F1HD AM/FM/HD tuner, Denon DRS 810 cassette, Denon CDR-W1500 CD recorder, Music Hall MMF-9 w/B&O MMC2, Revox A-77 R to R.

Offline Sir Thrift-a-Lot

  • Ready For Intervention!
  • ******
  • Posts: 2762
    • View Profile
Re: New member, old 'phile...
« Reply #14 on: April 15, 2016, 08:37:30 AM »
STaL:  That's an impressive score on the SC30s.  I remember seeing them at Opus once or twice, but never heard them.  Extremely rare, I'm sure.




Not SC30, SC50.   http://spicaspeakers.com/specifications/spica-sc-50-datasheet.php
« Last Edit: April 15, 2016, 08:39:01 AM by Sir Thrift-a-Lot »

 

Namecheap.com
Fight Spam! Click Here!