This is a fun listening space, enitrly assembled
from vintage, or very affordable, components…
the audio analyst©
For a tour of many of my previous systems,
going back to the late 1980s, follow this link
|Support: Equipment Rack
Monolith four-tier shelf
& my Fireplace Hearth
Von Schweikert Audio
VR-1 with rebuilt
Channel Islands Audio
PEQ•1 Mk II with
AC-15 MkII Supply
Esoteric Audio – Artus (4M)
& Emerald Air-Litz (1M)
MIT Mi-330+ (1M)
L – Mirage FRx-S10
R – Monoprice SUB-122BL
Yes, different models
Channel Islands Audio
PLC•1 Mk II with
VAC 1 Supply
Channel Islands Audio
|Support: Speaker stands
WiiM Pro Plus
Using Roon or
My DLNA Server
Audience OHNO (1.5M)
Given my inextinguishable fascination with vintage – and more affordable – gear, I’m introducing this new feature here and on my YouTube channel. Building from the excess gear I’ve accumulated over the decades, I’m starting off with a mixed system made up of both vintage products, with some more affordable newer items thrown in.
The system I’m introducing here is all assembled in a normal living space, my roughly twenty-one by thirteen and a half foot living room, and utilizes the fireplace hearth as well as an equipment stand for the turntable and phono stage. The intent here is to more closely approximate the real world conditions under which most music lovers operate.
I’m using a $130 Monolith four-tier/shelf audio stand. The top shelf supports a vintage 1977 Micro-Seiki DD-30 direct drive turntable I recently purchased for $250. Given its age, it has its own tone arm and captured AC and patch cables and is fitted with a vintage Monster Cable Sigma Genesis 2000 MC cartridge I bought on closeout in the early 1990s for $650. Also, on the second shelf of the Monolith stand is my $995 Channel Islands Audio PEQ-1 MkII Phono Stage that I reviewed for TAS in 2018, along with its $299 outboard Channel Islands Audio AC-15 MkII linear power supply.
Resting on my fireplace hearth we find the rest of the electronics, including the $1095 Channel Islands Audio PLC•1 MKII passive line stage from the mid-2000s, powered by its $159 outboard Channel Islands Audio VAC-1 linear power supply. The phono stage is connected to the line stage via a $349 set of four-meter vintage 1990s Esoteric Audio Artus Hyperbalanced single-ended interconnects.
I’m using the $229 WiiM Pro Plus for digital streaming from Roon or my DLNA server, connected to my line stage via a $229 one-meter set of vintage 1990s Esoteric Audio Technology 1 Emerald Air Litz single-ended interconnects. The line stage drives a pair of $999 Channel Islands Audio VMB•1 monoblocks from 2005, using a one-meter set of $299 MIT Mi-330+ single-ended interconnects from the same era.
I have a set of the $995 Von Schweikert Audio VR-1 monitors, which I bought for $600 two years ago, that saw some rather severe crossover damage in shipping. Fortunately, VSA was able to repair them, and because of my history with VSA, they were treated to a serious rebuild, including point-to-point wiring with Masterbuilt Signature hookup wire, ClarityCap bypass capacitors, Mundorf Resistors, and Erse Perfect Lay Inductors. They sit atop a pair of $139 vintage Plateau ST-24 stands from the 1990s, a 24” tall stand comprised of three square support legs, each filled with a mixture of lead shot and playground sand. The amplifiers are connected to my speakers using a meter-and-a-half-long $395 set of Audience OHNO 1.5M speaker cables with banana plugs on both ends from the mid-2010s.
I have pressed my $399 vintage 1998 Mirage FRx-S10 subwoofer into service as my left subwoofer, and a two-year old $119 MonoPrice MSUB-122BL subwoofer I had used in my IT office before my retirement as the right sub. The single-ended signal cables connecting the subs from the second output on the linestage are just generic patch cords I’ve had lying around for decades.
But the entire system price, at original retail pricing, would have been under $7500. Many of these products may be picked up on the “pre-owned” market today at substantial savings. But I’d bet you simply would not believe how engaging and flat-out fun this system is to be in the presence of. I recently had a visit from my friend and colleague, Maurice Jeffries, a skilled listener and journalist, who writes for both Positive Feedback and Enjoy the Music. He was very taken by just how much performance I’ve wrung from this hodge-podge of gear I had lying around dormant, and we talk about it in Episode 141.
Below is a scale drawing of my “Second Space” reference listening room
Care to do some time traveling? Here is a link to many earlier systems
a full frontal view of this engaging and fun “Second Space” system
A 2006 Vintage Von Schweikert VR-1 Loudspeaker
with upgraded X-Overs – including ClarityCap capacitors, Mundorf Resistors, and Erse Perfect Lay Inductors
A vintage 1977 Micro Seiki DD-30 in virtually mint condition
sporting a vintage 1989 Monster Cable Sigma Genesis 2000
The Astounding Vintage Moster Cable Genesis 2000 with Boron Cantilever and Microline Stylus
Designed by Hisayoshi Nakatsuk, now the president and designer at ZYX
The Channel Islands Audio PEQ•1 Mk II with its AC•15 Linear Power Supply
The Channel Islands Audio PLC•1 Mk II with its VAC•1 Supply, and the WiiM Pro Plus Streamer
this Passive Line Stage has dual outputs to drive my subs
One of the amazing vintage Channel Islands Audio VMB•1 Monoblocks
The MIT MI-330 Plus single-ended interconnects between the PLC•1 MKII and VMB•1 monos
A view of the system, showing the MonoPrice stand and Hearth Layout