Friday, October 30, 2009

The newer set of JBL 4312Bs

I'll do some more filling, and better painting, but the edge turned out really solid.

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A very solid 15 watt/channel integrated that costs very little and sounds very nice. In a small room with any of the 3 speaker systems below, you'll have a sweet system for under $200.

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3 small black speaker systems

Image (by Sound Dynamics): canadian 6 1/2 inch, 2 way system with Vifa tweeters. Woofers were just refoamed.

Mission 701: 5 inch 2 way ported system with rubber surround woofers.

Celestion 3: 5 inch 2 way sealed system with rubber surround woofers and aluminum dome tweeters.

All three sound very good.

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Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Coming Soon (or already here)

I haven't been posting as much, and a few things have fallen through the cracks. The weather has prevented me from posting more pictures lately.

I have a Pioneer SA-5500II, a 15 watt/channel integrated from 1973, that was the entry level model. It is small and cute, with more than adequate power for small rooms and systems, and a really nice sound.

I will have the Pioneer SX-838 receiver that I mentioned in passing back soon.

I have 2 beautiful Kenwood receivers: a KR-5600, a lovely 55 watt/channel model that I've had (and liked) before and the identical looking KR-4600 rated at 35 watts/channel. Both have excellent tuners. They are both at Vladimir's, one for light replacement (the bulbs are soldered in place), the other for a noisy balance pot. I look forward to their return.

The Marantz 3300 preamp is back! The person who bought it from me got all the burrs out of the top of the faceplate and had Vladimir service it. He then upgraded to a Macintosh, and I'm happy it's home.

I have 3 pairs of small black speakers I'll tell you more about soon: Mission 701s (2 way, 5 inch), Celestion 3s (ditto) and a pair of Image speakers without a model number (2 way 6 1/2 inch).

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Sunday, October 25, 2009

Yamaha NS-10M STUDIO photos

Sunday Update.

I hope you are having a great weekend.

A couple of things left yesterday. The Toshiba SB-420 went to a very appreciative new owner, who will get years of great music from it. Another smart guy picked up the ADS L470s.

I have done a lot of work on the cabinets of the Yamaha NS-10 STUDIOs and they are looking great. I'm afraid that the only way I can have woofers without pushed in dustcaps is to buy brand new woofers, which I won't do, since they sound fabulous. I will try to post pictures tomorrow.

BIG NEWS: I have another pair of JBL 4312Bs. This set was purchased at the same time as the pair that left earlier this week. The cabinets have one slightly deeper dent, that I will repair with steel reinforced epoxy putty (my favourite new fix it material). The cool thing thing about this pair is that they are mirror imaged.

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Thursday, October 22, 2009

Another Real Studio Monitor

UPDATE: These make true that cliche about hearing new things in recordings you've heard hundreds of times. I heard subtle tracks in some mixes that had been buried.
These arrived half an hour ago. There is a lot of information on the internet about them. They have rabid fans and rabid haters (and these are not flat by design!). They are extremely analytical. I have a lot of listening to do to get the measure of them, but for now let me say that they are serious professional monitors, not wannabes.

Apparently, my pair were once owned by Garth Drabinsky.

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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The Cupboard Is Getting Bare!

Four pairs of speakers left tonight: The Mission 700s, the Genesis Model Ones, The ADS 400s & the AR3As (going to someone who will restore them).

As well, the Sansui AU-4900 amp is gone, and the Technics SL-B2 turntable.

The ADC 1600 DD turntable is having speed stability issues and will be going for a visit to Vladimir. If the motor needs replacement, I will probably remove the tonearm and use it elsewhere.

I hope to find all kinds of cool new stuff in the coming days and will keep you posted.

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Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Tuesday Update

The magnificent JBL 4312Bs just left. They will be driven in their new home by the most beautiful Marantz 2275 I've seen. The combination sounds outstanding, and I know the new owner will be very happy. I have some seller's remorse at the moment, but this is what I do. I didn't write much about the 4312bs, I just listened with pleasure. They are the best speakers I've had here, or at least my favourites.

I'm listening to a pair of original Advents right now, and am pretty happy. In the next few days I hope to have some cool new speakers to tell you about. I have some fabulous small speakers right now, but will be looking for the next big pair.

Every once in a while I go to somewhere like Bay Bloor Radio to scope out the current retail audio situation, and am always amazed by what I see. I'm sure the equipment sounds good, but really, almost $4,000 for a 50 watt/channel NAIM integrated amp? Bose computer speakers for $500? Check out the flyer, and smile inside that your vintage system can make beautiful music for way less than a grand!

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Saturday, October 17, 2009

Dixie chicken

An amazing (and technically excellent) recording from one of my two favourite american bands.

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ADS 400s. Older than what I've heard before.

UPDATE: These are really good: sparkling highs, awesomely neutral midrange, tight, articulate bass.

I'll explain later why the woofers are not identical. I just finished a lot of work on the cabinets, and they are beautiful. They sound really good, perhaps better then the L470s. I'll let you know.

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Thursday, October 15, 2009

Advents with new grill cloth

This is an amazing sounding pair that had all kinds of DNA on the grills. I finally found the kind (if not the exact colour) of fabric I've been looking for to recover the grills, and I think these look more than presentable.

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Monday, October 12, 2009

JBL 4312B photos

I love the sound and the all business look of these speakers! They are the finest JBLs I've had here, and some of the best I've ever heard.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Happy Sunday

I've been listening to these with the AU-9500 on every kind of music I can think of, vinyl and digital...WOW! These are the real deal, and this may be the first time I've heard what the amp is capable of.
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Saturday, October 10, 2009

Weekend Update

UPDATED: The Genesis Ones are fantastic!

I'm sorry for not posting for three days this week, and there's stuff I wanted to write about, like a digital to vinyl comparison that really surprised me (not that the vinyl won, even on my modest AR setup, but by how much).

The Szabo 833s, Advent/1s and Marantz 3200 preamp are gone. I am looking for a big full range speaker for the Sansui AU-9500. It makes every speaker I've connected to it sing, but I'd love a pair of 3 way JBLs right now (L36, L100, 4311).

The Mordaunt Short Festival 3s left today. They sounded fantastic with the muscle of the Sansui.

I'm listening to a live recording of the Oscar Peterson Trio on the Celestion Ditton 25s, and Ray Brown's bass is beautiful.

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Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Genesis Model Ones

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Monday, October 5, 2009

A new Pioneer receiver

After looking for a while, I'm pleased to have a Pioneer SX-838. It's an older model (1974), blue lights, silver face, rated at 50 watts/channel and weighing 39 pounds. I've cleaned it and it sounds great, but the wood case will need work (real walnut veneer, perhaps?!) and the phono stage is just a loud buzz at the moment.

Sansui TU-9500 photos

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Sunday, October 4, 2009


I've never seen a ported speaker in this form factor (size, diecast metal cabinet, driver configuration), and I'm pleasantly surprised. These are not astonishing, like the ADS L200s, but very solid.
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Sansui AU-9500 photos

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Saturday, October 3, 2009

The Sansui AU-9500 is here!

I have just plugged it in and it sounds strong and clean. I still have some cleaning of pots and switches to do (I do that stuff myself). Vladimir replaced about 3 (small) Dixie cups full of transistors and capacitors to get it working, and he's done a great job. The power and dynamic range seem limitless!

These are very first impressions, but very positive.

I will clean more, listen a lot and take pictures soon (weather permitting).

One hour later.
Wow! This is one of the most authoritative, beautiful, rich sounding amps I've ever heard.

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Friday, October 2, 2009

The Dead Weather.

fantastic album!

Update: This band's name is the weather in Toronto today. I couldn't get the big Sansui amp today, but I cleaned about a real half inch layer of dryer lint kind of fluff out of the inside of the Sansui TU-7500 today, and cleaned both cases in anticipation of the arrival of the AU-9500.

The ADS L200s will be leaving tomorrow, and probably the Marantz 2230B, which is an eye opener, a reminder to me of how good a Marantz can sound, and in my opinion hits an even sweeter sweet spot than the justifiably renowned 220B.

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Thursday, October 1, 2009

Thursday Update.

I haven't picked it up, but Vladimir tells me the Sansui AU-9500 is ready and sounding good. I have been patient (and have had plenty of cool amps to listen to Including the AU-4900, which is wonderful), but I am really excited to check it out! I have been using the matching TU-9500 tuner for a couple of weeks and am impressed by the sound and the build quality.

The Szabo 833s have been my go to speakers for a few weeks now and are really impressive.

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