Where did you start?

matthewpiano

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Nov 23, 2007
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We are spend quite a lot of time on here discussing upgrades and new equipment, but there must have been some equipment that started it all off. What were the early systems that really got you into hi-fi and made you wonder how much it can do for your enjoyment of music? For me it was a Pioneer PL-12D, Sansui AU2200 amp, Sharp RT100 tape deck, Sony CDP-110, and Wharfedale Chevin speakers given to me by my dad when I was 8. That system introduced me to a lot of new music and I still have the amp now in my study, 21 years later!! I still remember upgrading to a pair of Mordaunt-Short MS15 speakers (another hand-down) and being so amazed at the difference that it started me on this quest. Since then I've had some classic pieces of kit including Mission 760s, NAD 3150, Rega P2, Naim Nait 3 etc. but - probably because its the most balanced and best set-up system I've had - I'm glad to say my current system is by far the best I've had.
 

biggus_1961

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Nov 24, 2007
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yep i started way back in the late 1980's with a (you guessed it !) a NAD 3020 amp ....Phillips cdp and KEF C75 speakers...Still use the speakers today and still like nad amps and cd players etc.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
1)toshiba separates in early 80's.

2) upgrade to kenwood mini system in early 90's

3)about 96 pioneer av amp ( dont ask me why),pioneer tape deck, cd player and tangent monitor 9 speakers.

4)1998- upgrade to marantz ki sig amp, pioneer 705cd player.

5) 1999 changed speakers for mon audio silver 7i floorstanders

6)2001- upgrade to arcam a75+ amp

7)2002 added power amp and upgraded to sony cd player.cant remember model but it had a weird cd holding mechanism and had great reviews,changed speakers to mon audio S1's.

8)2004- changed cd player to arcam cd73

9)Arcam amp went *** up so changed to cambridge audio azur 640

happy with amp,cdplayer and cables but speakers lack impact so will be changed soon and then, finally-hopefully, i will have the sound i like.Its been a long and winding road as well as learning curve to get what i want. As well as lots of cash and i can no longer afford to keep changing stuff!
 

Andrew Everard

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May 30, 2007
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As I've mentioned elsewhere, started at about 13 with a cannibalised jumble sale radiogram I split into non-classic Garrard turntable, valve amp/tuner and a pair of speakers, and progressed - via a series of electric shocks - from there!
 

Thaiman

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Jul 28, 2007
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LP12 was my first love! but I blame my addiction on WHAT HIFI Magazine! Start me off in 1989 and never have a nice car since :-(
 

nads

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Nov 29, 2007
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[quote user="biggus_1961"]yep i started way back in the late 1980's with a (you guessed it !) a NAD 3020 amp ....Phillips cdp and KEF C75 speakers...Still use the speakers today and still like nad amps and cd players etc.[/quote]

Know the feeling.
started with the 3130 instead, but i would not say that i am HiFi as once the turntable is bought i will be happy. always enjoyed music was brought up on vinyl and classical music, I can be very happy listening to any music on any kit anywhere in fact if there is no music or something to listen to i find it hard to concentrate on the work.
 

Alec

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Oct 8, 2007
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just to weigh in as e relative newbie - just a few weeks ago - MA BR2s, NAD 320BEE (both 2nd hand), Vivanco Silverflex cable, standard 5£ interconnect between amp and PC. All mp3s 320kbps, but some re-encoded from other file types, so lost a bit of quality - will be correcting this adding only WAV files in 2008. just on board hi def sound btw (sigmatel). on borrowed mission stance stands, my own are on the way (same). Then ill get a soundcard - not sure which, any hints would be great. Then upgrade the speaker cable (and ill get the same length both sides this time, to see if theres a diference) to silver anniversary qed or similar level chord company stuff, with interconnect of equivalent standard.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
Piecemeal and incoherrent (but that might have been the beer).

A second hand rotel receiver, cassette deck and some wharfedale denton 2 speakers. (about 20 years ago). Pretty reasonable for a student to be honest and I got a very great deal of pleasure , possibly not so much to my housemates:)

Then a proper job and a rather better denon drm10 cassette deck and a denon 920 cd player.

Then a cyrus 1 (mk2) and a pair of wharfedale 505.2 speakers. This wasn't a well matched system until...

A second hand Linn Sondek, basik arm and K9 cartridge.

And that - the Sondek, Cyrus1, wharfedale 505.2s was my first properly sorted system. Took about 2 years from leaving uni. to get it sorted. I suspect nearly any decent record deck would have done, I was just lucky to get a really nice one.
 
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Anonymous

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My first system: I doubt anyone here would know anything about.
A complete Elgin system that my father bought me when i was 12ish . Let me recall as much as I can.
Integrated stereo amp, 35 wrms per channel I think. With a large 3-D spectrum analyzer (I know that sounds fancy)
Speakers were 2 big boxes from Elgin. A 12 inch driver for low-mid-frequencies with a 2 in tweeter thrown in for handling higher end. Like typical of today's PA system or DJ system loudspeaker you know.
Boy, did they rock. I would connect my Yamaha electronic keyboard to it and play. I am sure everyone in the neighborhood heard the sound. Low end was full of grunt and to use a phrase "window shattering". Don't remember much of its mid-range and high frequencies though.
But that was good enough to get me started!
 

d_a_n1979

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Sep 6, 2007
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Hmmm first system - After owning loads of different midi systems i went into Sevenoaks in Preston and it all went uphill from there haha

First seperates were an ArcamAlpha 6+ integrated amp with a Marantz CD player and Acoustic Energy AE109 speakers which were fantastic, and still are. I'm toying with the idea to buy a pair that are local to me just to have them so i can have an excuse to build a 3rd system!

I've got the AE309's currently and i'm still sure that if i put the AE109's long side them with my amp set-up, i wouldnt be able to tell much difference.
 

Gyp

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Dec 17, 2007
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Luckily, my father took an interest when he put his own system together, and based on expert advice from the magazines of the time put together a system with Yamaha CR620 and Celestion Ditton 44s, with a Sharp cassette deck working as source. Had it's flaws, not least of which was cassette as source, but the radio was strong and it stood head and shoulders above the budget competition of the time.

This meant that when I started putting a system together myself I had the advantage of knowing that it was possible to put something decent together, and after a lot of auditioning I bought a Pioneer PD9700, A400 and Cyrus 780s. All excellent components that hold their own today.

Of course I'd got the bug then, and listened to a lot of kit along the way, so over the following 2-3 years (mid '90's) I upgraded a component at a time to put together the system I have now, and I have no desire (or funds) to change it in any way as it still sounds great.
 

zappa 100

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Sep 8, 2007
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Back in 1984,i got a system,mail order from Billy Vee in London comprising of a Dual 505-2/Nagoaka MP11, Rotel 820 amp and KEF Coda 3 speakers.All of the above had got rave reviews in "Hifi Now" magazine which i bought the first and subsequent issues of but it only about lasted 7 or 8 months.

The difference in sound between the above and the crappy music centre i had before was incredible and i think i have been looking for that sort of revelation ever since .Of course .i'll never find it........................

Other kit i have owned - Marantz cd74 and 63 cd players,Sansui 33x and pioneer a400 amps and Wharfdale 508 and Mission 760 speakers
 

Anton90125

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Sep 1, 2007
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I started getting interested in hifi in 1978 when I saw one of my school friend's father system. He had Yamaha NS1000M speaker, Luxman L85 V amp, LP12,Stax arm, Decca Gold Cartridge, I think he had Pioneer tuner TX7800, JVC Cassete Deck (can't remember the modal), Revox B77. Litz speaker cable.

This system, to a very green 14 year old (only used 1970's music centres) was a shock. I had a heated discussion with my friend that you could not get 100+watt speakers ( remember I only saw the music centres in catalogues like Marshell Ward. ) so my friend invited me round to tea.

I saw the Yamaha's and their specs- I was shocked and when his father demonstrated this system I was amazed.

I heard my first stereo image. He played Genesis-Trick of The Tail, Jean Michelle Jarre -Oxygen and The sound of aircraft. Its amazing to hear the low growl of a merlin engine (spitfire) fly across from one speaker to another. This technically is when I got started on Hifi.

I didn't get my first hifi till 1980 which was a Mitsubishi DT4700 Cassette Deck, Mitsubishi Reciever (can't remember the Modal number), Kef Celeste III and crappy thin speaker cable.

Being just 16, this is all I could afford. My father bought me the speakers

I loved this system as I was my first!
 
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Anonymous

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How far back do you want me to go?

Hardly Hi-Fi but my first "Stereo" was in fact "Mono" with a portable Phillips cassette player with the headphone jack connected to a pair of RCA's into a Sansui amplifier and Sansui speakers with grilles that looked like carved wood! Not exactly acoustically transparent.

First proper stereo was from Richer Sounds at London Bridge when Julian Richer worked in the shop and was an Akai seperates system.

I then went "upmarket" and bought new Akai seperates at Laskys which actually came with boxes and instructions and all the knobs. Quality was determined by the number of flashing lights so a graphic equaliser was mandatory!

After 4 years at University, I returned to buy Technics seperates with Acoustic Research floorstanders

At this point I drifted from Hi-Fi music into Home Cinema, (boo Hiss I hear?) where I went into a Yamaha Processor with separate Rotel power amplifiers and B&W speakers.

The best 2 channel system I have now is a Pioneer SACD/DVD-A player going into a Rotel RC980 pre/ 2x RB980 power amps into B&W 803D's, which integrates nicely into my Home Cinema set-up as per my signature below.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
Whenever I come on this forum and read what others say about their equipment I feel utterly inadeqate and somewhat of a fraud when it comes to hi-fi. Still my excuse is any hi-fi equipment bought has always been governed by available monies, circumstances and shear ignorance. Anyway, here goes.

My brother's old Van Der Molen stereo got me hooked on listening to albums and being abel to actually hear things on them I just never knew existed. So when I was working and able to afford my own kit like most sheep I was brainwashed into a Technics set up, seperate class A amp, largish speakers with metal tweeters placed on sand filled target stands (both of which I still have languishing in the loft) cassette deck and a direct drive quartz linear turntable. Compared to anything my friends or family had it was the dog's...well to me anyway.
I then started reading what hi-fi and like Thiaman became aware of the LP12 which I saved hard for and bought. Eventually the amp bowed out in a cloud of smoke and at the time not only was it being used for music but also running the Panasonic video through it so I could enjoy stereo video films.
Because of both my partners and my own love of films I thought I could kill two birds with one stone and get a relatively (at the time for me) expensive surround amp that I thought because of its price would play music reasonably well too even though I had nothing to back this theory up and consequently bought a Yamaha DSP A1. Next came new speakers mission 753 freedoms and 77 rears along with a rel strata sub.
Musically it was no worse than the old Technics set up but over time I was left uninspired. So my latest editions have been second hand Musical Fidelity A5 amp and Musical Fidelity Nu Vista CD3.
Of course there is no comparison with the sound, once again i'm listening to stuff I haven't heard in years. My only gripe now is trying to find some new speaker cable to allow the Musical Fidelity amp and cd to really sing as the stuff I am using is very very old un-named very wide flat very thick bi-wire cable given to me years ago by the shop that sold me the Technics kit. Once again money is a factor and because of the length of runs required have to make do until I can save up, but what I will buy I haven't a clue.
 

Alec

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Oct 8, 2007
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jimwall - dont atke this personally as ive had a v bad day, and ill probably say much worse to peope on less civilized forums today. But, theres always a smartarse with a completely unnecassry comment isnt there? C'mon Doooooooowwwwwwwwwwwwnnnnnn!!! And no, it was wine. a rather smooth south african red, forget the name. And ive just read my post back - it makes sense tome, even in the cold sober light of day. NAD - i saw your thread title addressing me and have replied - 3 times indeed. rather drunkenly.
 
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Anonymous

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[quote user="al7478"]jimwall - dont atke this personally as ive had a v bad day, and ill probably say much worse to peope on less civilized forums today. But, theres always a smartarse with a completely unnecassry comment isnt there? C'mon Doooooooowwwwwwwwwwwwnnnnnn!!! And no, it was wine. a rather smooth south african red, forget the name. And ive just read my post back - it makes sense tome, even in the cold sober light of day. NAD - i saw your thread title addressing me and have replied - 3 times indeed. rather drunkenly.[/quote]

Ah no, fear not, I was not rating your post, merely my slow and strenuous journey to what I consider my first proper hi-fi. And in fact most of my life, but there you go. Sigh.

Still hope you enjoyed the wine - forgetting the name is probably a good sign.

Have a very merrry Christmas :)
 

Alec

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Oct 8, 2007
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Ah. The effects may not have fully worn off yet then. i sicerely apologise. i really must curb my prckly tendencies when online! Sorry.
 

rich51080

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Jul 24, 2007
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An old Toshiba stereo system which cost my parents 800 quid in late 80's. Still sounds fav today.

What really got me into music was a sony walkman in the 80's. Then as I left school I started with a headphone hobby which in turn took me to Hifi. Had Rotel,Marantz,Linn systems.

Over 8 pairs of headphones and got a dream pair of phones that I would not change.
 
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Anonymous

Guest
[quote user="al7478"]Ah. The effects may not have fully worn off yet then. i sicerely apologise. i really must curb my prckly tendencies when online! Sorry.[/quote]

don't. i thought it was funny. i do the same occasionally and sometimes feel a bit sheepish after but there is always the edit button
 
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the record spot

Guest
Me? Late 1960s - a Dansette Viva record player. From there the family moved on to radiograms (bulky bits of furniture holding a record player and radio/amp with speakers at the sides. The precursor to the music centre! Which duly followed!!!

First hi-fi gear proper was a Fisher t/t, Pioneer receiver and tape deck and Wharfedale Laser 60 speakers the last of which are still working for my mum and in good order! It's kind of gone on since then!
 

Gwyndy

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Jul 20, 2007
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Kenwood Dolby Pro-Logic Midi system, it was in for repair more often than in use, eventually Comet paid me for it. Used the money to buy a Sony CDP-XE330, Sansui Tuner, Cambridge Audio A500 and Eltax Monitor3s?(they had a bottom mountted port may have been Liberty 3s).
 
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Anonymous

Guest
it all started when my dad gave me the remote to his all sansuy hi-fi sistem (i was 12)an granted me access to his cd and vinyl collection ................the my godmother got me a second hand kenwood ka3020 amp ( wich i still have and use some times ) along came technics cd player bose speakers ........ now working on all advance acustic sistem with my tannoy eirys 2 speakers ... god know wats next
 

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