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If You Were To Start Again....

bigfish786

Moderator
Jan 29, 2013
258
84
18,970
I think most people start small... and build up a system over a few years or so..

But, If you were to start again, from scratch, what would you buy?

new or second hand?

turntable? cd? and digital?

I was just wondering, if i sold everything i had, what would i replace it with.

i'd probably go for a Marantz CD and Amp and some DALI speakers. but i'm still a bit unsure about turntables/dac's and other digital sources.

so, i'm thinking my budget would be around a grand (ish)

what would you get, and how much would you spend?
 

busb

New member
Jun 14, 2011
58
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0
The idea of doing equalisation in speakers at high power is inelegant therefore I'd certainly investigate an active system but not from AVI! The question is a little academic in my situation so any further thoughts on exactly what - who knows.
 

drummerman

New member
Jan 18, 2008
540
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With my limited funds; one of cyrus's medium priced systems and a good standmount or ADM's/similar active. Perhaps a system based around CA's 851A. Add a turntable.

Regards
 

chebby

Well-known member
Jun 2, 2008
1,232
4
19,195
bigfish786 said:
...what would you get, and how much would you spend?
If it wasn't my money...

A nice Bang & Olufsen system.

If it were my money...

I've already 'started again' (almost three years ago) and I am still pretty happy with everything.

I'm still curious about ideas for the future (hence a forthcoming demo of some new Quad actives in the New Year) but no immediate 'itch'.

Whatever happens, i'll never want a traditional seperates system again.
 

steve_1979

Well-known member
Jul 14, 2010
231
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18,795
My Neutron 5 system cost £900 new (down from £1300 in a sale). For £900 I've never heard anything else which sounds anywhere near as good while also having bass that goes down to 30Hz. So if I was to start again with the same budget I'd buy the Neutron 5 system again.

:dance:

But if I was starting from scratch and buying new today I'd try very hard to find a way to stretch my budget to breaking point and get the ADM9's plus sub instead.
 
T

the record spot

Guest
I started out in hifi back in the late 1970s, my first system proper in the early 80s and it's gone from there. The landscape has changed incredibly in the last five years however and the marriage of sound quality and convenience (without sacrificing the former) means I'd opt for a neater solution. I'd still have a source player, I'd still have an amp of the kind I have just now.

I wouldn't opt for a remote streaming option as my main source (e.g. Spotify, et al) as I've no control over which mastering I can play. I wouldn't go mad with the money. I might be inclined to use an all-in-one player (Marantz UD7007 maybe) and go for the likes of a Roku 3 which has the bulk of the streaming video services on tap in one unit that you can add to at will than the likes of the (admittedly excellent) Apple TV3. I'd make use of apps like the brilliant Streambels that let you easily utilise cross-platform services (I can use my Android phone or tablet via the ATV3 unit). Physical media would still play a part though. No vinyl. Nice to see it enjoying a modest upturn, but long term, the future isn't vinyl but better quality downloads / more robust streaming services (Spotify can be horrendously flaky at times on my iPod Touch).

Costs? My current amp as is, my current player (or one of them), Roku 3 - £80 (from Amazon). Maybe better speakers, but other than that, not much. Say £1k for the speakers? Really very happy with the current setup though. A very strong performer.
 

abacus

Well-known member
Sep 24, 2008
430
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19,070
Streamer, Amplifier & speakers (Bi-amped) or Streamer, Pre-amp & Active Speakers, depending on which gave me the best performance and value.

Bill
 

Hi-FiOutlaw

Well-known member
Apr 20, 2011
236
0
18,790
I'm at where i want, really!

I like very much my streaming solution but next year I'll be looking for a better DAC or dedicaded Streamer!

Maybe in the future i'll look for better components or new components on the market, but keeping the layout, NAS, Streamer/DAC/ pre amp with DAC or/and Streamer, Amp or power amp and speakers!

:cheers:
 

steve_1979

Well-known member
Jul 14, 2010
231
7
18,795
If I were to start again from scratch with my MP3 player I'd buy the same 64GB Sony Walkman again. Top sound quality, compact, stylish and it has proper push buttons so it's easy to use without needing to take it out of my pocket (I really don't like touch screens on MP3 players).

The Westone UM3x earphones are perfect too. They're so comfy and have a very high sensitivity of 124dB so they don't need a seperate amplifier to get the best out of them. The level of clarity and control they have is amazing. Together with the Sony Walkman they're the perfect portable setup IMO.

The total cost for the Sony MP3 player and Westone earphones when new was about £600 which is a bit steep so I'd be looking to get them second hand if I was to start again from scratch.
 

CnoEvil

New member
Aug 21, 2009
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In case it's of interest, I once asked a similar question here: http://www.whathifi.com/forum/hi-fi/tough-hypothetical-question
 

DocG

New member
May 1, 2012
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CnoEvil said:
In case it's of interest, I once asked a similar question here: http://www.whathifi.com/forum/hi-fi/tough-hypothetical-question
Yes, I had a déja-vu when reading the OP: that was it! :cheers:
 
J

jcbrum

Guest
bigfish786 said:
. . . If you were to start again, from scratch, what would you buy?

. . . . i'm thinking my budget would be around a grand (ish)

what would you get, and how much would you spend?
If I started again I would definately go for . . .

An Apple iPad, Airport Express, and AVI DM5 active speakers. Total cost around a £1000, or perhaps a bit more if you go for a de-luxe iPad.

I would use my existing computer to rip my CDs to my iTunes library, and access it with the iPad, and play with Airplay.

I don't think there's any better, or cheaper way to do it really. The DM5s are amazingly good in terms of sound quality, with the best bass and overall clarity which truly belies their size. I, and everyone I know who has heard them think they are incredibly good.

JC
 

matthewpiano

Well-known member
Nov 23, 2007
388
198
19,070
I would still go for the Dali Zensor 3s as I don't believe there is anything to better them without spending considerably more money. I'd also go for the Genie 3 with Ortofon 2M Red again, as it is just such a musical turntable/cartridge - to the point where it has pushed my RP3/Elys2 combination to the side-lines.

For the rest of the electronics I would love to be able to find something that combined everything in one box - the streaming abilities of the SB Touch, the CD playing abilities of the Denon 720, and the same quality of amplification as the A30. I'd be very tempted by the Marantz MCR610, but I'd have to try it with the Zensor 3s, at home, to be sure it would give me the quality of sound I've become used to.

I certainly wouldn't get caught up in all the vintage stuff, which never led to any long-term satisfaction for me, and I also wouldn't get led down the path of yearning for the so-called 'audiophile' brands. The very fact that I've got a Roksan K2 CD player and a Rega RP3/Elys2 sitting on the sidelines just goes to show that it isn't always the best way to go.
 
J

jcbrum

Guest
Accepting mp's preference for his speakers,

matthewpiano said:
For the rest of the electronics I would love to be able to find something that combined everything in one box -
This pretty much describes my present system, which uses AVI ADM9s, rather than DM5s, and has the built in DAC and remote control pre-amp, but would increase the budget by about £500 or so..

matthewpiano said:
. . . I certainly wouldn't get caught up in all the vintage stuff, which never led to any long-term satisfaction for me, and I also wouldn't get led down the path of yearning for the so-called 'audiophile' brands.
I whole-heartedly support this view, but I retain my classic (legacy) Quad equipment, which lies un-used, except for nostalgic sessions.

JC
 

MakkaPakka

New member
May 25, 2013
20
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0
Happy with my system and, with the same money, don't think I would do any different. A few records I wouldn't have bought though where the quality is no better than spotify.
 

altruistic.lemon

New member
Jul 25, 2011
64
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0
I'd not stuff around with the cr*p I had and go for a decent system, Naim amps with Martin Logan or Magnepan speakers, Meridian CD player.

That, or a decent barbecue.
 

Macspur

Well-known member
May 3, 2010
77
0
18,540
I'd make sure I had enough money to buy either the Accuphase E460 or E560, but just wish I'd known about the EMC1UP before losing money on the likes of Naim and Rega... guess its a journey I had to go on to appreciate what I've ended up with.

Mac

www.macsmusic.blogbubble.net
 

davedotco

New member
Apr 24, 2013
20
0
0
I normally live overseas, my 'real' system is, sadly, in storage while I am in London, for a while at least.

About a year and a half ago I had a couple of grand to spend on a system, all my CDs are overseas too so I had pretty much decided on a Sonos connect with the balance spent on dac, amp and speakers.

After a brief exposure to a pair of ADM9Ts I considered them, well the latest version, as my 'default' option but prior to visiting the hellmouth for a demonstration, I decided to take a look at the 'conventional' dac, amp speaker combinations.

I visited a couple or three mainstream dealers and ws generally very disapointed in what I was hearing, a combination of poor equipment and sloppy demonstrations, nothing was remotely worth the money being asked.

I tried a more specialist dealer, though I had to travel, and tried some old favourites in this case the Creek 50a and a pair of the better Epos standmonts. Better but for nearly £1500 without a dac it was getting close to my limit, well at least with what dac I was being offered, I tried a couple of variations including the small Neats but remained a little underwhelmed.

I retreated to do some homework on specific combination but at this point Mrs DDC announced that we were buying an apartment and my budget rapidly dissapeared, so I never got to hear the 9RSSSS or whatever.
 

oldric_naubhoff

New member
Mar 11, 2011
23
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0
if I were to start over again I would go for DSP controlled active speaker system with digital inputs only (if there were an analog input it would be followed by a ADC). to complete the system I wpouldn't hesitate to use the crappiest network streamer since digital out would only be used. and that's it. I wish Martin Logan introduced such an active speaker into their line-up of hybrid ESL speakers. I would be first queuing for a pair.
 

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