£5k, starting fresh with a complete new system. What would you do?

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T

the record spot

Guest
James7 said:
the record spot said:
Yep, though the Kensai comes with a ribbon tweeter. The Jamo pair looks good though.

i have heard the Kensais and they are lovely speakers, albeit sub miniatures and lacking in the extension available from bigger speakers - in my case, in my room at any rate, this would be an advantage. They use a planar magnetic tweeter by the way. They are as insensitive as you would expect though - 83db - and balanced towards the bright / forward side, so need a smooth, powerful amp. A Creek Destiny 2, as I suggested above ... Or if money were no object something from Karan would work well I would have thought, though I have never heard the combination and don't know where one might!

Thanks for the info. The Onkyo would drive them fine.
 
T

the record spot

Guest
James7 said:
the record spot said:
Yep, though the Kensai comes with a ribbon tweeter. The Jamo pair looks good though.

i have heard the Kensais and they are lovely speakers, albeit sub miniatures and lacking in the extension available from bigger speakers - in my case, in my room at any rate, this would be an advantage. They use a planar magnetic tweeter by the way. They are as insensitive as you would expect though - 83db - and balanced towards the bright / forward side, so need a smooth, powerful amp. A Creek Destiny 2, as I suggested above ... Or if money were no object something from Karan would work well I would have thought, though I have never heard the combination and don't know where one might!

Thanks for the info. The Onkyo would drive them fine.
 

James7

New member
Jun 1, 2011
7
0
0
the record spot said:
James7 said:
the record spot said:
Yep, though the Kensai comes with a ribbon tweeter. The Jamo pair looks good though.

i have heard the Kensais and they are lovely speakers, albeit sub miniatures and lacking in the extension available from bigger speakers - in my case, in my room at any rate, this would be an advantage. They use a planar magnetic tweeter by the way. They are as insensitive as you would expect though - 83db - and balanced towards the bright / forward side, so need a smooth, powerful amp. A Creek Destiny 2, as I suggested above ... Or if money were no object something from Karan would work well I would have thought, though I have never heard the combination and don't know where one might!

Thanks for the info. The Onkyo would drive them fine.

yes, I am sure you are right. Would be an interesting combination.
 

tino

Well-known member
Sep 29, 2011
135
10
18,595
CnoEvil said:
lindsayt said:
Workwise, if you saw a good business opportunity, would you never start your own business?

If you saw a great job that was in a city 200 miles away would you never apply for it?

Risk. Stepping into the unkown. Sometimes in life, the potential benefits by far outweigh the risks.

I think you are forgetting how knowledgeable you are compared to someone with less experience, where the chances of buying a lemon a high.

Most of our suggestions are usually quite mainstream, or well reviewed, so the chances of buying a lemon will be quite low I think. Getting value for money or good 'synergy' is harder I think, and most people asking for advice want to be told what the best value for money system they can buy is without putting in their own leg work, experimenting or taking a risk with a less well known brand. I for one welcome lidsayt's left-field advice which no doubt is based on lots of practical experience and knowledge - but you probably need big cojones or very eclectic taste to even contemplate them.
 

CnoEvil

New member
Aug 21, 2009
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tino said:
I for one welcome lidsayt's left-field advice which no doubt is based on lots of practical experience and knowledge - but you probably need big cojones or very eclectic taste to even contemplate them.

Totally agree.....though for some, it would be a bit like following a "Pro Skier" off piste, over a cliff! :twisted:
 

lindsayt

New member
Apr 8, 2011
16
2
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Chris, you've demonstrated that you're adept at taking calculated risks in your personal and work life. So why are you so cautiously timid when it comes to buying hi-fi?

The whole point of buying blind is that it opens up 100% of the audio equipment ever made and available for anyone to buy. By restricting yourself to audition-only buying you're restricting yourself to 1% of the equipment ever made. That means that you're excluding a vast amount of sonic gems at non-depreciating prices from your buying lists, whilst including a large amount of depreciating sonic mediocrity.

Buying hi-fi without hearing it first is nowhere near as risky as ski-ing on piste - let alone off-piste.

80% of the kit I've bought unheard have been keepers. 20% have been re-sellers.

So what can you do to maximise your chances of buying a peach and minimise your chances of buying a lemon?

1. Research the going rate of any item under consideration. Use tools like ebay advanced search completed listings to find this out.

2. Whenever possible buy under the going rate. The 2nd hand hi-fi market is highly imperfect. Some items sell for above the going rate, some below. Buying below will allow you to re-sell for minimal loss or a profit if you do end up buying a lemon.

3. Do your Google research. There's a vast amount of knowledge available on the Internet.

4. Look at the price of the item when it was new. For example, if a vinyl source you're investigating cost as much as VW Golf when it was new, but now costs less than a new Linn LP12 Majik or Michell Orbe, that greatly increases the chances that you'll be delighted with it compared to a new Majik LP12 or Orbe.

5. For analogue sources, amps and speakers, generally go for heavier items. Avoid lightweight plasticky turntables. Avoid amps with small mains transformers and output transformers in the case of valve amps. Avoid lightweight speakers. Especially lightweight ones for their size. Engineering excellence in hi-fi generally weighs.

6. Use common sense.

7. Use your existing knowledge of hi-fi. For example, if you've bought a middle of the range component from one particular manufacturer and been happy with it and see a top of the range component from that manufacturer at the right price, there's a good chance you'll be happy with the top of the range item.
 

CnoEvil

New member
Aug 21, 2009
556
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lindsayt said:
Buying hi-fi without hearing it first is nowhere near as risky as ski-ing on piste - let alone off-piste.

Like I said, it comes down to experience.......of course the nature of the risk is different, but I'm talking about the act of trying to follow someone who does know what they are doing (and makes it look easy), and getting it totally wrong (because of lack of experience).

IMO. A lot of your very reasonable list requires experience gained along the way, and generally not at the fingertips of a newbie.....eg. Google/ this Forum is littered with conflicting advice, which takes a fair amount of knowledge to cherry pick what's relevant.

Once you have gone out there and put in the miles (by finding out what you like), you will have a much better understanding of what you should be looking for.....thus making buying blind (or skiing) much less risky.
 

oldric_naubhoff

New member
Mar 11, 2011
23
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0
lindsayt said:
The whole point of buying blind is that it opens up 100% of the audio equipment ever made and available for anyone to buy. By restricting yourself to audition-only buying you're restricting yourself to 1% of the equipment ever made. That means that you're excluding a vast amount of sonic gems at non-depreciating prices from your buying lists, whilst including a large amount of depreciating sonic mediocrity.

this is the golden thought of the thread IMO. HI-FI world has much more to offer than just your local store round the corner. it's bad idea to restrict ones choices to what's available at your local's. if I was like that I'd end up with Marantz entry level separates and maybe some budget Kefs, because that's what's available at my local not-so-strictly-Hi-Fi store.

I would also add a rather obvious remark but which is, I believe, frequently forgotten, at least on this forum. HI-FI equipment is a piece of engineering and as such falls to scrutiny of lab testing. if the piece of equipment measures well it will play music well as well, provided you take the right measurements. that especially applies to speaker measurements. unfortunately scarce and sometimes bogus tech info submitted by manufacturers on their official web sites is way to little to make any informed judgement. fortunatelly internet is a vast source of information.

@Covenanter

on the back of what I just said I feel it's totally viable to recommend other people equipment you've never auditioned. for instance Opalum speakers mentioned by me earlier. the guys behind the design are of the opinion that within speakers predominantly impulse response should be done right because this test represents speakers' ability to convey musical transients. fair logic IMO since music is nothing but a bunch transients spread in time. add to that point the fact the speakers are acive and driven by digital DSP module and that means they can shape phase response and FR curve the way they see fit. on the pdf linked below they talk in more detail about importance of quick driver decay and phase correctness:

http://www.opalum.com/Admin/Public/DWSDownload.aspx?File=%2FFiles%2FFiles%2Fdocs%2FOpalum_BRAND_brochure_Screen.pdf

on page 9 there are two graphs of impulse response. suffice to say the impulse from their speakers is on par with very best cans, let alone typical speakers. try to bit that.

I also had a chance to see raw FR (that means no smoothing) of flow.1010 and I was very impressed by what I saw. maybe very best passive monitors using very high quality drivers would stand a chance to compete. but then all passive spekers will have problems with correct phase alignment between drives so they loose at the start anyway. can you find any reason why my speaker option should not be recommended even though I never heard it in action yet?
 

Covenanter

Well-known member
Jul 20, 2012
82
27
18,570
oldric_naubhoff said:
lindsayt said:
The whole point of buying blind is that it opens up 100% of the audio equipment ever made and available for anyone to buy. By restricting yourself to audition-only buying you're restricting yourself to 1% of the equipment ever made. That means that you're excluding a vast amount of sonic gems at non-depreciating prices from your buying lists, whilst including a large amount of depreciating sonic mediocrity.

this is the golden thought of the thread IMO. HI-FI world has much more to offer than just your local store round the corner. it's bad idea to restrict ones choices to what's available at your local's. if I was like that I'd end up with Marantz entry level separates and maybe some budget Kefs, because that's what's available at my local not-so-strictly-Hi-Fi store.

I would also add a rather obvious remark but which is, I believe, frequently forgotten, at least on this forum. HI-FI equipment is a piece of engineering and as such falls to scrutiny of lab testing. if the piece of equipment measures well it will play music well as well, provided you take the right measurements. that especially applies to speaker measurements. unfortunately scarce and sometimes bogus tech info submitted by manufacturers on their official web sites is way to little to make any informed judgement. fortunatelly internet is a vast source of information.

@Covenanter

on the back of what I just said I feel it's totally viable to recommend other people equipment you've never auditioned. for instance Opalum speakers mentioned by me earlier. the guys behind the design are of the opinion that within speakers predominantly impulse response should be done right because this test represents speakers' ability to convey musical transients. fair logic IMO since music is nothing but a bunch transients spread in time. add to that point the fact the speakers are acive and driven by digital DSP module and that means they can shape phase response and FR curve the way they see fit. on the pdf linked below they talk in more detail about importance of quick driver decay and phase correctness:

http://www.opalum.com/Admin/Public/DWSDownload.aspx?File=%2FFiles%2FFiles%2Fdocs%2FOpalum_BRAND_brochure_Screen.pdf

on page 9 there are two graphs of impulse response. suffice to say the impulse from their speakers is on par with very best cans, let alone typical speakers. try to bit that.

I also had a chance to see raw FR (that means no smoothing) of flow.1010 and I was very impressed by what I saw. maybe very best passive monitors using very high quality drivers would stand a chance to compete. but then all passive spekers will have problems with correct phase alignment between drives so they loose at the start anyway. can you find any reason why my speaker option should not be recommended even though I never heard it in action yet?

All I can say is that I would not recommend something I hadn't heard. I wouldn't wish to take the responsibility. However the point you make about the difficulty of finding somewhere you can audition a wide range of kit is very valid.

Chris
 

matt49

Well-known member
Apr 7, 2013
51
1
18,540
Covenanter said:
All I can say is that I would not recommend something I hadn't heard. I wouldn't wish to take the responsibility. However the point you make about the difficulty of finding somewhere you can audition a wide range of kit is very valid.

Chris

I think it's quite reasonable to recommend stuff and admit you haven't heard it. But I share your misgivings about recommendations of unheard kit that don't come with the rider "I haven't heard this myself". Context is important.

Matt
 
T

the record spot

Guest
I recommend gear I haven't heard all the time, all the time. Of course you can do this, as long as the qualifiers are included as well. "Apparently", "... Others users have said...", " this may be a good option provided... " and so on. Ultimately, the buyer bears responsibility for their own actions, if they decide to throw £500 away without doing their own legwork, my personal culpability here is around zero.
 

Vladimir

New member
Dec 26, 2013
220
6
0
Chris said don't recommend what you haven't heard to give himself a competitive edge because he was recommending his own system. The man is an evil genius and you lot are lollipops.

eating-lollipop-11.gif
 

iQ Speakers

New member
Feb 24, 2013
129
3
0
What could be potentially worse is somebody recommending somthing they have heard but without reference or experience of comparable products.

For instance my recommendation of a Leema Pulse should be viewed with less weight because although I think it sounds brilliant I don't have enough referances to other amps to do so, so I don't. What I do is read and assimilate people's views to come to my own conclusion. This is how I chose the Pulse and was very pleased.

Reading other forums there is so much interesting and alternative kit out there.

On this forum I found out about a Vincent 237 a hydrid amp and Ambrahamsen both makes that I believe would offer an attractive alternative to the norm.

Certainly the Albrahamsen had not been heard by Electro but given its background was an extremly useful suggestion as was the Vincent.
 

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