It may be time for a reality check.
I was researching preamps (again) and came across the VTL TL6.5 Signature. Reading some very positive reviews I sent an e-mail to VTL, figuring I'd get one back at some point. What I got was a call from a sales rep from a local dealer following up; I'd purchased from the store, though not recently, so I was in the database. We had a very good conversation and I was stoked about the 6.5, even considering an audition strongly. The price I knew was $9500, a strain but doable if I made the proper financial adjustments.
However, more research showed that $9500 price is a 2007 price, and the unit isn't as new as I thought (VTL's website calls it "new"); it's at least 5-6 years old. I finally came across a Nov. 2012 price of $11,500. That's well beyond my capabilities, unless I want to go into debt or empty my checking account. I have some of those special offer checks the credit card companies often send, and I ACTUALLY thought about using one, which would give me interest-free payments through the end of the year. But there's a fee of 4% of the purchase/transfer amount for doing so. Add that to the tax and we're around $13,000.
The VTL would be an outstanding performer and killer with my MC501s, but the price of admission is simply too steep. There's a 5.5, but it has more tubes in it, including the power supply, whereas the 6.5 has only two plus a solid-state power supply. Here's where coming back to earth is important. I cannot, realistically, afford the 6.5, so I'd best move on. But that I did, even though briefly, consider how to swing the thing already knowing it would be unwise at best to buy it, is a bit scary. I do
know I'd better not audition it.
So I'm moving back to my humble preamp list and figuring out my equipment rack. A reconfig is going to be necessary, as the line voltage runs too high these days and my Furman SPR will shut down every time the air conditioner engages. It will mean snaking an extension around a corner to another room which is (I think) on a different line.
Ah, even a semi
-hobbyist such as I can get caught up. Reality, please!