Attachment 237034Attachment 237035
First thing, let's keep this civil. I am looking for opinions of those who have listened and/or owned both newer and "vintage" equipment.
I have been a member of this fine forum for a few years and have owned a lot of different audio equipment in that time (and previously). My favorite systems were those comprised of a pair of Dynaudio Contour 1.3 SE speakers and a Krell KAV-400xi integrated amp, a Krell 300r receiver and Bryston 0.5b and 4bST separates. Many other amps came through my doors and left. I have owned Creek, NAD, YBA, Cambridge Audio, Consonance, Arcam, Yamaha, etc... The one constant was Dynaudio speakers starting with Audience 50s, then Contour 1.3 MkIs and finally the 1.3 SEs.
After leaving the US Air Force I decided to pursue a B.S. degree in mathematics. I have subsequently decided to pursue a PhD. in math, hence, I was forced to sell off most of my previous stereo equipment to help finance this endeavor. The one constant for the past 3 years has been a Yamaha AX-592 integrated amp that I purchased in mint condition for next-to-nothing. I kept it as a backup because it was able to drive the power hungry Dyn 1.3 SEs nearly effortlessly if not perfectly like the Krell and Bryston. When I bought it I thought the Yamaha was going to be crap, but it wasn't! At moderate volumes it sounded quite similar.
The Dyn 1.3 SEs are now gone a victim to increasing tuition rates.
After much research into a value speaker that would sound decent I purchased a pair of new Yamaha NS-555 towers. The Yamaha speakers surprised me with their fantastic weight and build quality for the price. They lack in areas to the Dyns but they a very surprisingly good sounding, lacking the "tizz" and bloated bass of most inexpensive speakers. They also image incredibly well!
I recently purchased an older Yamaha A-1000, a TOTL integrated from 1985. I cannot believe how full and powerful it sounds. It has almost zero background noise, powerful bass, great mids and highs. It seems substantially more similar to the Bryston and Krells than the newer Yamaha that I also own, it sounds effortless at nearly any volumes. Also, the built in phono pre amp sounds incredible! The A-1000 has a gimmick "Auto Class A" switch that just increases the bias current to allow class A operation up to 10 wpc...Who cares??? This beast seems to have the ominous "sound" of some of the big dollar amp/preamps, effortless, powerful and never strained, the more you turn it up the bigger it sounds, no collapse or popping indicating clipping.
I have all but been told that I am all but an idiot for comparing Kell and Bryston to an "old" Yamaha for sound quality. However, I feel that if I were to do a double blind test nearly nobody could tell the difference (volume and speaker independent)! The A-1000 is beautifully put together inside and out, nothing like todays mass market junk.
Am I out of my mind, am I imaging this or do any of you, experinced listeners, have more insight???
Pictures: Sorry inserted first.