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Audible Nectar

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  1. Ebay and other sites can be a real crapshoot. When I was in my tube buying heyday on Ebay, I made use of a local tube professional who would screen all of my purchases. This guy knew all of the bulls#it people pull, which is widely varied and substantial. He was also helpful in instructing me what to look for - his advices kept me buying only the best stocks and only on two occasions did I get burned by a bad buy (both which I won the cases through Ebay's buyer satisfaction system). Rule One: If a seller doesn't accept returns, don't buy unless you can accept that the tube could be junk and your money down the drain. Good sellers will allow high feedback bidders return privileges. Two: Once the tubes are received, have them screened on GOOD equipment by someone who knows what they are doing. My tube pro tested them on at least three different testers, for transconductance, gain, and microphony. I got service from him that only the best dealers could give. Three: KNOW well the purpose of how your tubes will be used. A microphonic tube isn't always an issue if you are using them as drivers, for example - but if you need quiet ones, assume in any random batch - even NOS - that there will be some only driver grade and not suitable for linestage or phono use. The best sellers will have screened the tubes for sale on these issues already, but those tubes will sell for the highest prices. Four: Be aware that most of the best tube stocks are gon-zo. Compared to eight years ago, when I was in full swing stocking up on tubes via Ebay, there were good sellers selling good stocks. Today, those sellers are much fewer, and the stocks much more "thin", and the fakes much more frequent. Know what you are looking at - how the tube you are buying should look like. There's still some stuff that comes available - but if it's truly real and NOS, you will pay accordingly. In order to have a "buyer group", we MUST have someone who can screen the tubes well, and be able and willing to fight the good fight with the seller when it doesn't go as planned.
  2. Proper rebuild is ESSENTIAL with MC30s, which includes proper parts selection. They are also "wanting" of the best tubes - one can easily spend near the cost of the amps to part and tube them properly. They are wonderful when taken "all the way" in this regard.
  3. Helpful hint: While the longplate BB 12AU7 is an excellent tube, don't forget about it's slightly younger brother: The short, wide plate version made from 1959-1962 with the large O getter. This is an excellent tube, exhibiting similar characteristics as the longplates - but less prone to microphony and possessing a little more bass slam. I have a substantial stock of both varieties - they are by far my favorite 12AU7 - but it is worth knowing that the 1959-1962 version can be still found NOS on occasion for more "mortal" prices, and you won't be missing much - in fact in some areas the later one is a bit better.
  4. Uhhhhh boyeeeee is that a can of worms I had similar aspirations of combining a 2 channel tube rig into a 5.1 home theater setup. I took my pair of VRDs and ran them as the main channels with a JM Peach, using the HT bypass function so I could feed the main channels of my home theater pre/processor into it. The HT is all identical Cornwalls. The theory was that I could have all of the features of a 5.1 HT and a 2 channel tube rig all in one. Use my Mac tube rig (MC30/MX110) on the Belle Klipsch in another room. The problem was that when I ran the system in 5.1, the VRDs presented a differing sonic signature from the other three channels, powered by solid state, screwing up the effort I took to timbre match the system (identically prepared Cornwalls). Adding to the trouble was that I had to leave the Peach preamp powered on all of the time, which meant wasting those oh-so-pricey 6922 linestage tubes even when I was listening to the HT pre/pro. So the best laid plans and dreams of the ultimate HT with 2 channel tube rig turned out to not be such a good idea in practice. They didn't "mix" so well. And my pre/pro wasn't the best 2 channel performer - much better in multichannel HT. So I opted to use the Belle Klipsch in the other room for tube use only - I alternate between the Mac tube rig and VRD/Peach for front ends. The HT is the HT and does not co-mingle with the tubes anymore. I suppose I could do better slaving away trying different approaches to get them to match closer, but I gave up on it. In this case, giving up made sense. Those modified KHorns, however, would certainly have me wanting to feed them the best electronics possible. I have dreams and plans of modifying my Belles to a similar fashion, and they will get the two aforementioned tube rigs as a steady diet. Now in your case, the fact that your speakers differ some - modified KHorns mains and LaScalas back might not have you irritated so much in the differing sonic signature of the tube vs. SS gear. But it's a gamble. I am also curious about what you use as center channel (or if you're going "phantom" which might actually work pretty well if you're trying to do tubes up front). There is also the issue of your HT preamp "mating" well with the tube amps. Even if your HT pre is a top notch 2 channel performer (and I have no idea if it is or what AVR you have) there is the issue of finding an amp or amps that mate well with it. Most AVRs leave some to be desired on 2 channel stuff as well, complicating the "matching" issue between the tube amp and AVR. It's a big guessing game. Maybe someone here uses VRDs attached to a pre/pro? Assuming you plan to keep the HT intact as is, and wanted to invest in a system that can make both ends (HT and 2 channel) the best they can be, maybe a proper pre-pro and SS amp combo to run your speakers might be a better investment than tubes. McIntosh pre/pro and multichannel amp maybe? On the other hand - since you seem to not use the HT end of things much, maybe consider paring that system down to 2 channel only - even if you do want to integrate the video sound into it on occasion. Tweak it for 2 channel, feed it a signal from your video stuff to get occasional audio when you want it by using an "aux" - but focus in on making it a killer 2 channel rig. Which in that case a top end tube rig would certainly be a good option. Or consider if possible having an HT room and a 2 channel room as I do - tubes on the 2 channel, SS for the HT. If you decide to go 2 channel only, don't feel like you failed, because a number of our forum friends have ventured into the HT realm only to discover that their true happiness lies in 2 channel, and directed their hard earned dollars into making their 2 channel rigs the best they can be - to which you have a helluva start with those modified KHorns. Hopefully this is some food for thought. Before we talk about MC30s vs. VRDs I think these are the more important issues. Whaddaya think?
  5. Max - First, a few questions: What speakers are being used? Did I read that right in "recent posts" that you have LaScalas and KHorns? What of your listening habits? How do you listen - loud, moderate, etc. Large room, small room/near field? Will this be the primary system, or do you/will you run more than one setup? If so, what is that other setup? What kind of music do you listen to? I find that the material I listen to brings out aspects I prefer in one or another....although I can say that without much reservation that VRDs are hard to beat on big Heritage in any case. But a little insight into your listening habits and other systems you may have can play a role. I have a work shift today, but if you can address some of these I'll have lots to say later today.
  6. No you did not. I bought eight of those bad boys before the holidays, and I find them to be an excellent 6922. Not only that, but the dealer had sufficient stock to be able to pick out the most quiet tubes - selected for preamp use. I had a few of those in my stock already and use them in my Peach, and thought so much of the tubes that I stocked up for life.
  7. I bought the Oppo 93 a few years ago along with my Sony flat panel and have similar comments on the picture. Interesting story: I had the Sony display calibrated professionally (excellent investment, BTW), and when he was done making the adjustments, he offered to adjust the Oppo as well. He puts in a reference disc, viewing some test tracks and frames, then looks at me and asks where I got the machine. I explained Oppo to him, then he looks at me and says "That's one helluva player - it needs no adjustment". The tech was VERY impressed with it, stating that he's never calibrated such a setup where the Blu-Ray matched a properly calibrated display in that manner with no adjustments.
  8. Music is a drug. It increases/alters heart rate, alters mood, can cause wild physical activity such as swinging arms, shaking azzes, or in some cases drowsiness, and can be extremely habit forming. I guess this makes the equipment "paraphernalia" If the government knew just how pleasurable it can all be they would make it "Schedule One" :D
  9. I am one who has what most would call a disability. I was born with severe clubfoot, which was dealt with via several extensive reconstructive surgeries. I do have a good degree of mobility, but have issues being on my feet for long periods of time. Working on my feet takes real effort and a substantial pain tolerance. I have had issues my whole life finding a good employment match for my physical condition - although I have always been gainfully employed, it's been doing work that requires time on my feet and it becomes a challenge to maintain without substantial pain. As to the effect on my hobby, that is a challenge too, as I enjoy live music, particularly in festival settings. This is difficult because being on my feet at larger fests (where the best bands tend to be) makes for a sore fellow after a long weekend, but I make it work and consider the pain well worth putting up with, because the music is worth it. I spend a lot of time researching "logistics" at these events, securing camping spots and special arrangements that minimize the walking and time on my feet. Where there's a will, there's a way, which is the best attitude to have for anyone with disability.
  10. I am also late to the news. So many of my thoughts have already been said - but it's obvious that he was a huge part of this community. I am sorry, Alex, for your family's loss, and I am sorry for the forum as well, as we so obviously lost a great member and friend to the community. I also want to thank you, Alex, for making us aware of this. While the news is heartbreaking, we all here appreciate that you thought of us.
  11. That defense is looking "All Time". Secondary ranks amongst the best in league history (80's Niners, 70's Steelers). In a league that has done so much to benefit passing offense, defense and ball control still wins championships. I don't see them losing.
  12. See bold, above. ... but he went to the ground after he caught it. As you said, he DID possess it before he hit the ground. He was no longer "in the act" of catching a pass. It was caught. Keep reading - see ALL bold. The key is "through the process". Of course he caught the ball before he hit the ground, but possession must be maintained through the process of hitting the ground as well.
  13. I would like to know more about the phrase, "when contacting the ground." When, exactly, is this moment in time? It seems to me the point of first contact means the ground "has been" contacted, and the player is no longer "contacting" the ground. I think the phrase is problematic, and I also think it is not consistent with the notion that the ground cannot cause a fumble. The phrasing does leave room for ambiguity - but the league interpretation of the rule since the change in 2010 has been consistent. The issue in this case is that when the ball hit the ground, and Bryant lost that "firm grip" on it, that invalidated the catch by league intent and interpretation of the rule. The phrase "the ground can't cause a fumble" is no longer valid in all cases, this one being such a case. This rule in question was changed, IIRC, prior to the 2010 season. It used to be that so long as a player had control of the ball with two feet down, it was okay if the collision with the ground dislodged the ball. That rule was changed four years ago. I know what you mean. It was just a surprising rule to me. I can only conceive that the intent of the rule is to determine clear possession. He had clear possession before ever contacting the ground. But it is what it is... He DID have possession before contacting the ground. That, however, is not enough. He must maintain control of the ball THROUGH the collision with the ground. This did not happen, therefore incomplete.
  14. I think this is what confuses people. I guess my understanding of this comes from watching too much NFL The first time I saw that play, I knew the catch was in serious doubt. Much like the "tuck rule", there is certainly reason to argue that the rule should be changed, or to argue whether "the rule should be the rule". When the officials call the play by the league rule, however, one cannot say the call was incorrect.
  15. I would like to know more about the phrase, "when contacting the ground." When, exactly, is this moment in time? It seems to me the point of first contact means the ground "has been" contacted, and the player is no longer "contacting" the ground. I think the phrase is problematic, and I also think it is not consistent with the notion that the ground cannot cause a fumble. The phrasing does leave room for ambiguity - but the league interpretation of the rule since the change in 2010 has been consistent. The issue in this case is that when the ball hit the ground, and Bryant lost that "firm grip" on it, that invalidated the catch by league intent and interpretation of the rule. The phrase "the ground can't cause a fumble" is no longer valid in all cases, this one being such a case. This rule in question was changed, IIRC, prior to the 2010 season. It used to be that so long as a player had control of the ball with two feet down, it was okay if the collision with the ground dislodged the ball. That rule was changed four years ago.
  16. How so? Is there some other written rule, other than that which is cited in the article linked by Oldie? The rule: "If a player goes to the ground in the act of catching a pass (with or without contact by an opponent), he must maintain control of the ball throughout the process of contacting the ground, whether in the field of play or the end zone. If he loses control of the ball, and the ball touches the ground before he regains control, the pass is incomplete. If he regains control prior to the ball touching the ground, the pass is complete." Bryant lost control of the ball momentarily - it pops out of his hand when he (and the ball) hits the ground. That is, by rule, no catch. If the receiver falls after the catch, the ball CAN touch the ground, but it can't "wobble". So long as the receiver maintains a FIRM grip on the ball in the case of hitting the ground, it will be a catch. When the ball moves out of the grip of Bryant during the "crash" (ball hitting the ground) it was clear the call would be overturned, assuming correct application of the rule. Watch the video on the MSN link where Mike Pereira explains this.
  17. What's the Dallas/Green Bay travesty to be called? "Football act?" What a freaking joke of a call. You're the lawyer. Explain it according to the National Football Lawyers rules. http://www.msn.com/en-us/sports/nfl/why-dezs-catch-wasnt-a-catch-in-cowboys-packers/ar-AA832es The call was correct within the league rule as written. Ask Calvin Johnson how it feels. It doesn't seem right when viewed by a layperson, but the call was correct.
  18. The big questions are if you intend to sell, or keep them long term, and for what purpose. If you intend to sell them, sell them as is (and I gather this wasn't the case based on your prior post on your MC30s). I also gather from your prior posts that you were having service problems. If you plan to keep them and USE them, then you should have them electrically restored (rebuilt) for safe operation, and in my opinion, best sonics too. Typical rebuild involves the power supply, coupling caps, and at least partial resistor work (especially the large plate resistors). Parts selection is important - they do affect the finishing details of the sonic signature. Carbon film resistors are typically best in rebuilds (to maintain that relaxed sonic signature) and there are a select group of coupling caps that do really well in these (I am NOT a fan of orange drops or Illinois capacitors in these amps - there's MUCH better out there without breaking the bank). A GOOD quality thorough rebuild is usually not an issue for resale if you sell them some years later, especially for the buyer who wants to actually use them, and especially if the original schematic is adhered to. There are collectors, as mentioned previously, who like them all original who leave them on the shelf and don't play them. If you have a pair of all original parted MC30s and they are having a service issue then you are in a bit of a "corner", because in most cases the exact original type replacement parts will not be available, or for that matter maybe not even desirable. I have two pairs of rebuilt MC30s and have traveled quite a road with them, and have listened to MC30s with a multitude of differing parts packages and stages of rebuild. I think too many get hung up on "all original" for their own operating amplifiers - but the fact is that these amps are approaching 60 years old, and as those parts fail (and often intermittently, making them difficult to repair one part at a time) the user ends up either in a cycle of endless repairs one part at a time, or ends up selling them because they find other amps to be less hassle or better sounding. Neither scenario should be the case, because a properly restored and tubed pair of MC30s are still the midrange and tonality kings on Klipsch Heritage. It is only because I stayed the course and didn't give up on them - and found the RIGHT solutions to make them the best they could be, that I still have them and swear by them to this day. Which is not to say that I don't like other amplifiers - my other personal favorites are NOSValves VRDs - but the 30s have qualities that no other tube gear can duplicate. In any case of resale, there will be buyers who buy for different reasons and there's always that issue of finding the right buyer who wants the specifics of the units you are offering for sale. This mirrors the "classic car" hobby in the idea that things like originality, operability, and actual purpose of use will always be "in play".
  19. After watching the Cowboys game yesterday, something tells me "The League" wants them in the Super Bowl. Dallas, Seattle, Denver, and Baltimore are my divisional selections.
  20. It is a difficult thing for many to be able to write an effective description of the nuances of an audio device. It's an art form that I find missing around here that used to be more present, before so many of the high-end guys flew the coop. That ability to "review" things like capacitors, tubes, and nuances of amplifers is very useful and saves a lot of trial and error. Absent that kind of insight, we are left with "it's really good" on the one side and the engineer types saying "prove it" on the other, when the truth usually lies somewhere in between. There are an increasing number of "Julian Hirsch" types on the forum these days - he was a prominent writer for Stereo Review, who oft opined that "all good amplifiers sound the same" and it's corollary, "all CD players sound the same". Many of us who have had experience with good quality gears, parts, and the like know this is not the case - especially on "audio magnifiers" like Klipsch speakers are. Power conditioning is an area I have not much explored, and I likely won't know if it makes a difference until I try one of these devices for myself. But if I trusted the engineer mantra of "you can't prove it", I would be using a 1980's era home theater receiver, because Julian Hirsch said it wasn't necessary to spend or search any further.
  21. Uhhh-huh That's how you end up with a home theater made of Cornwalls.
  22. Tube Fanatic - I don't think you have to require that dealers do ANYTHING. I am only suggesting that this website be able to tell a searching potential customer where they can buy Heritage/Palladium - even Reference - with no ambiguity. All that it requires is that the dealer search section of the website have "Heritage" in the drop down menu, which will then tell that potential customer where they can go and see these speakers. Maybe even be creative and make the high line dealers more prominent on the site - "Buy Heritage Here" or some similar prominent link on the site to direct customers. I think that dealers who are willing to show and sell the product would appreciate that kind of support.
  23. A few points from an old school "Heritage" guy.... I too have had frustrations with the fact that Heritage isn't the brunt of Klipsch home speaker sales. I have to admit that I am emotionally attached, as well as factually based in the idea that Heritage - to ME - IS what makes Klipsch who they are. Heritage IS Klipsch. But in today's world - and in particular, in today's economy, Heritage has it tough. When Heritage was selling huge numbers, the economy was structured much differently than it is today. People could pay off their homes in 10 years, afford health care, had savings accounts, didn't have huge college debts. The US had a huge middle class who could afford to buy Heritage quality products. Then place on top of the changing economy the overall audio marketing ploy that somehow smaller was better, as home theater and "small is king" became the mantra in the '80s going forward - and you have a recipe that moves Heritage to the back of the bus in terms of overall visibility in a huge marketplace. The Klipschorn is the only speaker to maintain continuous production for as long as it has. Without the Reference, Legend, Synergy, and other products to sell, the Klipschorn as well as the company might not exist today. Klipsch has to respond to market forces in order to survive. I consider it quite a feat that Klipsch has kept Heritage alive in the first place. It is difficult to push a product that so few can afford. It is even more difficult to sell a product people cannot see. Placing Heritage in front of people is a difficult proposition - it costs lots of money to place enough operating samples in enough places to move the sales needle, and advertising is VERY expensive. Social media and internet is a huge help - it is relatively cheap to do this. But at some point people have to see and experience the product. Priced as it is, asking people to buy Heritage sight unseen and ears unheard is like asking people to buy a car without driving. That is Klipsch's challenge as it pertains to Heritage. You mention the "hipster" with disposable income. Has Klipsch ever given thought to going to where they hang out? Try this: Every summer, this crowd goes to the festival music circuit, where many of these people are ponying up $1000-$3000 per ticket for VIP amenities and arrangements. If they can afford $1-3K for VIP tickets, they can afford any of Klipsch's product. Oh - and they are music addicts. Just your demographic. Show your product. Lead them to a place they can buy. and make sure that you have a list on your website where they can see, hear, and buy your product. ESPECIALLY the high $$ Palladium and Heritage. People should be able to find a Heritage or Palladium dealer via this website with a few keystrokes, where they can see and buy. If you leave it up to people asking your dealers for stuff, you're missing the boat. Your customer, being led by this site and your social media, should be able to walk into a dealer listed on this site, and know that Heritage, Palladium, or other products are sold there. YOU lead them to where they need to go. Don't leave it up to people having to beg dealers for product. Strategically place your product in front of your target demographic. You need not have Heritage in every shopping center in the country, but when people ask about it or come here looking for it, they need to be steered to a place where they can see and buy it.
  24. Hate to be the one to tell you, but jazz was best comprehended from an altered state before Pink was born... Dave I read that quote and almost shot a mouthful of beverage all over the monitor. That quote would make as much sense if you substituted "Grateful Dead" for "jazz". I also find incredible humor in those who like Roger Waters' art but hate his politics. The man, his art, and his politics are inseparable. It reminds me of a Neil Young concert I attended about 10 years ago - a live rendition of the "Greendale" album - within which Neil had on stage a depiction of a police squad car waiting behind a billboard stating "Support Our War". This woman was going on and on at the setbreak complaining about his politics, and about how she had been a fan of Neil for 30 years and waited out for over a full day to see his show, but was appalled by his politics. I looked at this woman and stated sternly "You don't know jack about Neil". Liking Neil and Roger but not liking their politics is akin to loving pizza but hating the cheese. I enjoyed the recent Roger Waters Wall Tour a great deal - an "updated to current themes" juxstaposition of today's politics blended into the original story. While some of the details have changed in 30 years, the essence of the message of The Wall hasn't. When Roger asks during "Mother" if I should trust the government, projected to the right of the stage in that classic "Wall" artistic font: "No F-----g Way". Anti authoritarian, anti-fascist, and anti war, Roger is my kinda guy. Roger's, like Neil's politics isn't a "bug" - it's a feature. As for Gilmour, I think fans of the band were drawn into taking sides - which one was better, which one was at fault, and so forth. Both were great in their own way, and I don't think there's any question that they would have been even better together than apart. Just as there's no substitute for Roger, there's no substitute for Gilmour either. Both still did great work apart, and did pretty well filling the "hole" left by the other's absence - a testament to how good each was. Roger was the better writer, Dave the better musician in performance. It was a reunion everyone would have loved to see. We all still wonder what could have been.
  25. It is in the "cost is no object" realm that we learn. Take luxury cars. Features like outside temperature and seat heaters were features that were thought of as "retched excess" - that now reside in a big percentage of new cars sold today, to the average consumer. Another such feature was the rear camera, which most minivans now have installed as standard equipment. It is also true that many luxury features "fail" or don't integrate well or have that much of a lifespan, but it's in that trial and error that we all benefit. In the audio hobby, we often can "take what we want" and leave what we don't find useful or appealing, but just the fact that these options are available presents more choices. And you never know which of these high end frills will be useful to more pragmatic practitioners of the hobby. I thought caps were in that "wretched excess" category but found out that they brought quite a benefit to my systems. So I say "let the wealthy play". We'll gather what they spill in product and knowledge in a more sensible and directed fashion.
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