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post #721 of 747 Old 09-27-2014, 03:37 AM - Thread Starter
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Okay, I got back from the New York Audio Show last night, and it's my first time going. I was curious. I came away impressed with several things, and I've been stoked (too much, unfortunately). At least I stuck to my planned targets. Mostly.

The room I spent the most time in was VPI's main room (they had two). Both Harry and Matt Weisfeld were there, with Matt's girlfriend working the door. All were available to answer questions. They were demoing their new Classic Prime turntable, which comes with a new production 3D tonearm. It replaces the Classic II, essentially, and will retail for $3500. It doesn't have the same style as the Classics, though. It has an outboard motor, a Classic platter, and the configuration bears some resemblance to the HRX. The amp is an upcoming VPI integrated, which is a remake of an old Scott tube unit. The Prime has most of the performance of the Classic 3 for less money. By the way, VPI won't be offering the Classic 3 in Rosewood much longer—get yours now if you want it.

The Prime is an amazing unit. The design would have to grow on me, but it sounded great. You know you're in trouble when you just sit and listen to the music, forgetting what else you're doing.

I was impressed with the Legacy Aeris and Focus SE, in the Legacy and Audio Classics rooms respectively. If they weren't so heavy. . .Audio Classics was using a MCD500, and it crossed my mind. . .The power came from their own amp; Audio Classics makes their own tube amp, a large chassis, reminiscent of a Marantz. And they used a C2300, so some familiarity there.

The Stereo Exchange room was another good-sounder (Totem/Transparent/Devialet). I'm thinking more about going over to all Transparent cables (interconnects), despite not being displeased with my AQ King Cobra (I even have one pair still in the box). The Totems were from the Element series (Fire) and went pretty low for what were stand-mounted speakers. The speaker cable was simple Transparent MusicWave, bi-wire configuration. According to the SE guy, I'd have to go to MusicWave Plus to better my Kimber 12TC.

I also liked the Nola Metro Grand Reference. I didn't stay in the room long, just long enough to know I liked their sound character. Not bright, musical, easy to listen to.

So coming out of the show, I felt as if I might go for the Transparent cables and maybe a new VPI down the road. If the logistics worked, maybe I'd get some Legacys. I'm past curious; I'm intrigued. Maybe it'll pass later. But I must be realistic on what I can really afford to do, and whether I should do anything. Perhaps today I'll get a chance to play music and see if that counters my current mindset. The Legacys stuck with me a bit, too. I can't afford the Aeris, and the Focus would be a big stretch, plus the practical considerations of something so heavy (about 145 lbs. per speaker).

I did pick up a copy of Yes' Fragile from Acoustic Sounds, only to get home and find I already have one. An unnecessary expenditure of $30. This is what happens when you buy impulsively.
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Last edited by prepress; 10-10-2014 at 12:28 PM. Reason: typo
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post #722 of 747 Old 10-05-2014, 01:06 PM - Thread Starter
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Last Sunday I made a return trip to the NY Audio Show and spent much time in the three rooms of primary interest to me: VPI, Legacy, and Audio Classics. I have new appreciation for the Focus SE and the VPI turntables. I went to other rooms and was impressed by several. Martin-Logan had two rooms: an HT room and a 2-channel high-end setup with Krell amplification. The HT room was cool, except I think the room was too small for two subs; bass was too boomy. The high-end 2 channel room also had 2 subs but was a bit larger, and there was less "boom." Actually the sound was good, until someone requested a Nine-Inch Nails CD. I'm not a NIN fan, and the system revealed how poorly the CD was recorded. It sounded harsh and hashy compared to the other material being played; it didn't sound clean. The Naim/Focal room sounded just gorgeous, but I couldn't begin to afford what was in there. Naim's new Statement amps and Focal Grande Utopias combine for over $300K!

Having come away from all the goodies, I am giving thought to a new turntable and new speakers, though not this year. Again, the Focus SE is back on the radar, but the $10,500 is a bit steep. The Bryston Model T (not at the show) has all the promise of being a good fit in my room, plus they weigh less. And there are now dealers for both speakers in NYC, so that helps.

Curiosity is dangerous, as I'm developing a tendency to want to try almost every piece of new gear I come across that is or might be within financial reach which appeals to me. For example, my Pioneer Elite 09 BDP is chugging along just fine, and I like the Wolfson DACs. The coming BDP 88 uses ESS Sabre DACs, which the Oppos use also. Some reviews hint at the Oppo's detailed but slightly lean sound; not sure if I'd like that. I have an Oppo BDP-83 that I've never hooked into the stereo so I don't know what it sounds like, but I could see getting the new Pioneer 88 and relegating the Oppo 83 to bedroom duty if I ever get that mini-system set up in there. I even bought a 24" LCD to go in it (720p, though). I wonder how all this curiosity will play out.
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post #723 of 747 Old 10-06-2014, 12:47 AM
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Thanks for the report
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post #724 of 747 Old 10-06-2014, 01:12 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the report
You're welcome. By the way, I did exchange the Yes LP on Sunday for something else, a jazz set called All Night Long, with Donald Byrd, Hank Mobley, Kenny Burrell and others. Haven't played it yet.
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post #725 of 747 Old 10-06-2014, 09:52 PM
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You're welcome. By the way, I did exchange the Yes LP on Sunday for something else, a jazz set called All Night Long, with Donald Byrd, Hank Mobley, Kenny Burrell and others. Haven't played it yet.

Hmm! let me know what you think of it, about three years ago a co-worker got me interested in Donald Byrd and I ended up buying "Street Lady" which I love to this day. I'm betting your in for some good music.
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post #726 of 747 Old 10-24-2014, 04:58 PM - Thread Starter
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Hmm! let me know what you think of it, about three years ago a co-worker got me interested in Donald Byrd and I ended up buying "Street Lady" which I love to this day. I'm betting your in for some good music.
I finally played the album Wednesday, and will say I did indeed enjoy it. Donald Byrd was an excellent trumpet player, in fact everybody on the LP was good: Jerome Richardson (flute, sax), Kenny Burrell (guitar), Hank Mobley (tenor sax), Mal Waldron (piano), Doug Watkins (bass), and Art Taylor (drums). Solos were fluid, the grooves were tight, the music was easy to listen to. All Night Long, the title track, takes up all of side one yet is not boring. The only thing is that since I haven't been playing vinyl much lately, the tubes in my preamp's phono section aren't broken in yet. I'm sure things will sound even better once they do, or I could just re-insert my phono preamp. And on good-quality 180g vinyl, with no pops or clicks, I say great ether way!
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post #727 of 747 Old 10-24-2014, 07:44 PM
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glad to hear it ! you know the funny thing with me and vinyl is every time I get ready to get back into it, I end up upgrading something else ! its a perpetual cycle but one day
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post #728 of 747 Old 11-06-2014, 05:01 PM - Thread Starter
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Here's a thought. Given my recent experience at the NY Audio Show, I have begun to consider the Legacy Focus SE speakers (again) as potential replacements for my Mirages, should I decide on doing that next year. The Legacys join the Bryston Model T on the list, for a grand total of two. Even though the Golden Ear Triton Ones are less money and I've read good things about them (Sound & Vision and TAS gave very positive reviews), I'm still leery of speakers that need to be plugged in.

Most recorded music does't go as low in the bass as any of these speakers, so maybe that aspect of the question is a wash, but I'd think the lower a speaker goes, the more dynamic potential. I'm not reproducing thunderstorms here, but maybe some low organ now and then, or Fanfare for the Common Man on repeat is possible.
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post #729 of 747 Old 11-07-2014, 12:08 AM
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Looks like you got your work cut out for you! better get started with some demos (if possible), I'd add at least 5 to the list in that price range. I don't envy you at all as the main speakers are the most critical link in a setup but great start with the Focus and Bryston
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post #730 of 747 Old 11-07-2014, 02:01 PM - Thread Starter
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Looks like you got your work cut out for you! better get started with some demos (if possible), I'd add at least 5 to the list in that price range. I don't envy you at all as the main speakers are the most critical link in a setup but great start with the Focus and Bryston
The new Def Techs Mythos ST-Ls are in the mix, peripherally. They too have gotten good press. I have an opportunity to go hear a demo with them as part of a major HT setup next week if I want to go. They'd be paired with Sharp's newest 4K panel and Krell amplification. The Def Techs are the same price as the Golden Ear, same need to plug them in. The form factor is quite apartment-friendly.

I do wonder about ground loops with plug-in speakers; I understand that can be a problem sometimes. I have struggled with ground loop issues here, mainly because of the cable feed.
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post #731 of 747 Old 11-07-2014, 03:39 PM
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The Revel F208's have gotten to pretty good reviews as well if the plugs become to much of a bother they kept me from the likes of Martin logans when I considered them.
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post #732 of 747 Old 12-23-2014, 12:41 PM
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I have the Legacy Focus SE and the Marquis center and all I can say is wow! They are phenomenal! What I can hear in movies is unbelievable! I had the Definitive Technology BP7002's (which were great) and the Legacy's are in another league! Just my two cents. I haven't heard the newer Definitive Technology speakers or the Bryston's.
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post #733 of 747 Old 12-26-2014, 02:50 PM - Thread Starter
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I have the Legacy Focus SE and the Marquis center and all I can say is wow! They are phenomenal! What I can hear in movies is unbelievable! I had the Definitive Technology BP7002's (which were great) and the Legacy's are in another league! Just my two cents. I haven't heard the newer Definitive Technology speakers or the Bryston's.
I'm in Texas for Christmas (hope everyone had a nice one) and, having been off the forums, I got some much-needed peace from considering the speaker possibilities and a dose of reality.

I cannot, realistically, afford the Legacys. It would mean a couple years of debt probably, and that's scary. The Brystons could be a year and a half. I'd need to figure that out, but debt is never good. Plus, I'll be helping a friend out financially, so I may shelve the speaker thing for now.
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post #734 of 747 Old 02-15-2015, 02:47 AM - Thread Starter
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I'm in Texas for Christmas (hope everyone had a nice one) and, having been off the forums, I got some much-needed peace from considering the speaker possibilities and a dose of reality.

I cannot, realistically, afford the Legacys. It would mean a couple years of debt probably, and that's scary. The Brystons could be a year and a half. I'd need to figure that out, but debt is never good. Plus, I'll be helping a friend out financially, so I may shelve the speaker thing for now.
It's official: I AM helping out a friend financially, as she's in difficult circumstances and is living above her means, due to higher rent and several medical bills. We are of long acquaintance, 23 years and change.

And the ardor over speakers has quieted down quite a bit. What I have is really good. I'm sure either speaker would be equally or even more satisfying, but I hit a sweet spot with the Mirages and am reluctant to let them go without sufficient cause. Plus, I'm not so sure that the Focus SE wouldn't be overkill for my relatively small room. I have been told that the Brystons are not an issue in smaller rooms, this from someone who owns them and in a room slightly smaller than mine.

So the idea of new speakers is on vacation. I may still upgrade a power cord or two, but that's it as far as I'm concerned. For now.
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post #735 of 747 Old 03-03-2015, 11:08 PM
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It's official: I AM helping out a friend financially, as she's in difficult circumstances and is living above her means, due to higher rent and several medical bills. We are of long acquaintance, 23 years and change.

And the ardor over speakers has quieted down quite a bit. What I have is really good. I'm sure either speaker would be equally or even more satisfying, but I hit a sweet spot with the Mirages and am reluctant to let them go without sufficient cause. Plus, I'm not so sure that the Focus SE wouldn't be overkill for my relatively small room. I have been told that the Brystons are not an issue in smaller rooms, this from someone who owns them and in a room slightly smaller than mine.

So the idea of new speakers is on vacation. I may still upgrade a power cord or two, but that's it as far as I'm concerned. For now.
Sounds like a plan always good to hear about people taking care of friends as I for one know they are indeed hard to find
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post #736 of 747 Old 03-05-2015, 01:20 PM - Thread Starter
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Sounds like a plan always good to hear about people taking care of friends as I for one know they are indeed hard to find
We don't think alike and so see some things differently, which on occasion leads to disagreements and some frustration, but we must have SOMETHING going on or we wouldn't have lasted this long. So I'm pleased to help. And I agree: friends are hard to find and can be hard to keep as well.

As I said elsewhere, emptying my checking account or raiding my emergency fund significantly doesn't constitute being able to afford something. The Focus SEs would run almost $12K with tax and delivery, assuming the standard $150/hr. rate for AV installations; the Brystons about $8.5K. The alternative is debt, and I'm not crazy about that either.
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post #737 of 747 Old 03-05-2015, 10:58 PM
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We don't think alike and so see some things differently, which on occasion leads to disagreements and some frustration, but we must have SOMETHING going on or we wouldn't have lasted this long. So I'm pleased to help. And I agree: friends are hard to find and can be hard to keep as well.

As I said elsewhere, emptying my checking account or raiding my emergency fund significantly doesn't constitute being able to afford something. The Focus SEs would run almost $12K with tax and delivery, assuming the standard $150/hr. rate for AV installations; the Brystons about $8.5K. The alternative is debt, and I'm not crazy about that either.
Yeah tell me about it no sense in plundering oneself as contentment may sound better than any upgrade. I've found myself recently with the upgrade bug but took a different approach and evaluated each change so as to not entertain me buying something simply because I feel I need it due to idiosyncrasies, this in turn caused me to make well informed choices the biggest may be replacing my Oppo 105 with a Sony 6200 bluray player (which does have sacd and a few other niceties) I'm swapping pre/pro's as well and if the gamble pays off it promises good sound and a few dollars saved
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post #738 of 747 Old 03-07-2015, 03:24 PM - Thread Starter
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Yeah tell me about it no sense in plundering oneself as contentment may sound better than any upgrade. I've found myself recently with the upgrade bug but took a different approach and evaluated each change so as to not entertain me buying something simply because I feel I need it due to idiosyncrasies, this in turn caused me to make well informed choices the biggest may be replacing my Oppo 105 with a Sony 6200 bluray player (which does have sacd and a few other niceties) I'm swapping pre/pro's as well and if the gamble pays off it promises good sound and a few dollars saved
Saving money! Always good. I had an unexpected occurrence today and I'm trying to justify it by saying it's not a regular thing and I saved money. My favorite flavor of Edy's frozen yogurt, Chocolate Fudge Brownie, showed up in the supermarket today; it hadn't been around in over a year. But there it was! And on a twofer! Not having had or seen it for so long, I pounced and got two cartons (after a brief bit of angst)! I haven't had any yet, but I'm planning to get into it tomorrow.

But, why are the moves above a gamble, unless you're not familiar (or haven't any hands-on experience) with the Sony or pre/pro you're getting back?
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post #739 of 747 Old 03-07-2015, 09:28 PM
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Saving money! Always good. I had an unexpected occurrence today and I'm trying to justify it by saying it's not a regular thing and I saved money. My favorite flavor of Edy's frozen yogurt, Chocolate Fudge Brownie, showed up in the supermarket today; it hadn't been around in over a year. But there it was! And on a twofer! Not having had or seen it for so long, I pounced and got two cartons (after a brief bit of angst)! I haven't had any yet, but I'm planning to get into it tomorrow.

But, why are the moves above a gamble, unless you're not familiar (or haven't any hands-on experience) with the Sony or pre/pro you're getting back?

Good find indeed! I'm hoping the new Marantz 8802 will fill in the gap between two units as the 8801 came very close to doing so, selling the 105 is the gamble as it helps to fund the new purchase. The new 8802 just may get the job done but I do plan on a new Oppo when the next gen is released but hoping the Sony fills the gap till then but that's if it makes for a good transport. Oh my what have I done!
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post #740 of 747 Old 03-18-2015, 12:52 PM - Thread Starter
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Good find indeed! I'm hoping the new Marantz 8802 will fill in the gap between two units as the 8801 came very close to doing so, selling the 105 is the gamble as it helps to fund the new purchase. The new 8802 just may get the job done but I do plan on a new Oppo when the next gen is released but hoping the Sony fills the gap till then but that's if it makes for a good transport. Oh my what have I done!
Taken a calculated risk. Let's hope it pans out to your liking.
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post #741 of 747 Old 03-18-2015, 01:35 PM
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Taken a calculated risk. Let's hope it pans out to your liking.
I had to send the SonyS6200 back as it had to much vibration for me but did have great video performance! I did get lucky and find a new in the box Marantz UD5007 to use as a transport (which basically its all it is due to only having an pair of rca's and hdmi out) very good construction and video is very,very impressive I'm very pleased with this unexpected addition as I'm not feeling half the loss of the 105's video performance, so thus far half the gamble has paid off! As I'm typing this the 8802 is due to arrive today and will find out if indeed the risk is to my liking.
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post #742 of 747 Old 04-25-2015, 03:07 AM - Thread Starter
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I had to send the SonyS6200 back as it had to much vibration for me but did have great video performance! I did get lucky and find a new in the box Marantz UD5007 to use as a transport (which basically its all it is due to only having an pair of rca's and hdmi out) very good construction and video is very,very impressive I'm very pleased with this unexpected addition as I'm not feeling half the loss of the 105's video performance, so thus far half the gamble has paid off! As I'm typing this the 8802 is due to arrive today and will find out if indeed the risk is to my liking.
Okay, a month later, how are things sounding and looking?
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post #743 of 747 Old 04-25-2015, 11:40 AM
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Okay, a month later, how are things sounding and looking?
Hey prepress

The gamble has paid off more than expected and has kicked things up several notches across the board Marantz has pretty much eliminated jitter in the 8802 (wish I knew what they did) I'm using a Pangea hdmi cable which worked well with the 8801 due to a nice sound over lesser hdmi cables and this sound for 2/ch vs my Oppo 105 via XLR to the 8801 has a deeper extended bass along with a more powerful presentation this was a shocker and as the 8802 settled it only got better. This compelled me to do some cable and conditioner testing , once I feel my setup has gone to a new level of fidelity I do my best to extract its full potential, here's what i'm testing out this week.

Shunyata Defender plugged into a Cable Pro Noise trapper Revelation II powerstip (no surge or conditioning built in with an upgraded IEC inlet) the strip on its own showed my power from my 20 A dedicated lines where better than I thought and inserting the Defender did set the sound back a bit (blunting the highs) the stip on its own is just incredible but its been 2 days and will need more time before making a final decision.
I did purchase a WireWorld Matrix 2 outlet extender but sent it back this along with a WW Elecktra 7 cable for the 8802 (nice but sent it back as well)

This test is against a PS Audio Dectet and Quintet (subs) with my amps direct to a PS Audio Soloist Premier inwall conditrioner /surge protector with all PS Audio PW cables AC3 to AC12 and two Pangea AC9 &AC9se, I'll update next week as to what is staying or going back.

Oh and I do have my on the WW Starlight 7 hdmi cable but will wait till the dust settles
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post #744 of 747 Old 05-15-2015, 01:10 PM - Thread Starter
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Dust . . . that's my problem too. I've just about surrendered.
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post #745 of 747 Old 05-21-2015, 12:01 AM
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Dust . . . that's my problem too. I've just about surrendered.

I keep an air purifier in the room and try to dust the gear twice a week once at a minimum. There's no getting around the fact electronics love dust!
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post #746 of 747 Old Yesterday, 02:31 AM - Thread Starter
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Not sure what this was.

Thursday, I was listening to a CD, part of the Time-Life series AM Gold. On some of the songs I heard what sounded like distortion in the bass, and from the right channel only, it seemed. I didn't get up to check that, as I was too busy trying to decide if this was some previously unheard detail or true distortion; I'm still not sure. I wondered if perhaps the right woofer or its cone was having a problem. Listening sessions are so rare for me these days, maybe the supposed "distortion" (a kind of grainy yet detailed fuzziness) is in the recording and not something to be concerned with. Either way, I don't remember hearing it before.

More listening is needed. The other frequencies seemed unaffected, so it may be nothing. If this is a speaker problem, my search would be on, as I decided a while back I would not attempt to have my Mirages repaired should they fail. They're 22 years old and counting; I've gotten my money's worth in spades. My short list is already set: Bryston Model T, Legacy Signature SE, and (despite my reluctance on powered speakers) the Golden Ear Triton One, with perhaps the latest Def Tech Mythos in there also (the most stylish of the bunch insofar as blending into the room goes).
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An easy way to tell if the distortion is on the disc is to listen to it with headphones, if you have them. If you hear distortion on the phones, you will know it is the disc.
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