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Things I have learned on my hi-fi journey


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I hate the sound of my system when I first fire it up, an hour later its fine.

I either got used to the crappy sound or tubes really do have to warm up.

The tubes DO have to warm up.

While it's true with all tube gear, this is particularly true with the old Philips plant tubes (British Mullard and Holland Amperex). For example, if you evaluate the sonics of a 1960 Amperex 12AX7 after 15 minutes, you'll probably find it a bit too bright, shrill, and edgy. If you wait for an hour, you'll find them transparent, liquid, lifelike, and unrestricted. They image better, too :-)

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I also have nice tubes from the 50s & 60s but I don't seem to hear as much of a difference between the time I fire it up and an hour into my listening session as others seem to. Sometimes, I do. Other times, not so much. I do however hear a significant difference between really nice vintage tubes and new Chinese and Russian stock and I like the way my system sounds with well recorded music from the time I fire it up to the time I shut it down.

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I have a lot of hobbies, but this is the only one that I can enjoy after a long day of work when I am exhausted, when time is at a premium, and/or when I do not have time to get dirty.

It also makes me feel like a kid again. I got just as excited when I got a copy of the Complete Clapton this Christmas as I did back in 1979 when I got a copy of Physical Grafitti (still have that copy too).

One more lesson: One system is more enjoyable and less intrusive in your life than several systems all over the house.

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I personally agree fully with items 1 and 2.

I get excited heading out to the local used record store each payday with in a month. Gives me the satisfaction of earning something. Else, all bill paying and pay checks are done electronically. I never get to 'see' the results. I read that children have to hold something for a period of time to feel that it is theirs. I see how far I have progressed.

I do love having my two other down stairs systems, I feel free to tweek, swap, and modify. Have my one and only system down for days/weeks would not be pleasant.[:^)] But they are out of sight and not prone to having to deal with WAF.

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I also enjoy having multiple systems. I love Khorns and Cornwalls for different reasons and it's nice having both. Also, my Khorn system is in the same room as my wife's office (she works from home) so it's nice to be able to listen upstairs when she works late.

I thought about this after I posted. We do not have basements out here. If I did have a basement I would definately have a second system and probably use it a lot. I have a thrown together second system in an exercise room and another in a game room (currently not set up), but they are not critical listening. We want to move up north. If we do I will set up a second system.

It was just getting ridiculous when I had like 4 or 5 systems in our house and then a bunch of gear in storage, and I only listened to one.

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