Looking for equipment in St Paul, MN - I'm a total newb to this

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by jmkeuning, Dec 6, 2017.

  1. jmkeuning

    jmkeuning Member

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    Get to the punch line: I am in St Paul, MN and want to start listening to records. I am starting from zero. Can you help me find some stuff on Craigslist? I figure my budget is about $1000 to get started, but that within the year I might double or triple that.

    Less useful information about why I am here:

    I've always been enamored of vinyl; the sound and the tangibility of the thing. I've also always really enjoyed great-sounding equipment. But I've never pursued those two interests in my life. I am ready to do that.

    I was reading some comments by a guy who died recently. He knew he was dying, and he wrote a letter to be read after his death. One of the things that stood out to me was "buy the best speakers you can afford." That has been gnawing at me.

    Another change in my life has me wanting to listen to music and spend some time and money making that happen. I mention at the top that I am interested in used equipment. I live in a very old house, and those old consoles would look really cool, but I am not opposed to new equipment.
     
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  2. HiFi Guy

    HiFi Guy Well-Known Member

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    Welcome! There's actually some really decent stuff on CL in your area.

    I love these speakers- I sold them back in the day. Make sure you get a demo that both the woofer and tweeter work. ADS made great speakers but are out of business. $350

    https://minneapolis.craigslist.org/hnp/ele/d/ads-810-speakers/6388628862.html

    This is a seperate preamp and power amp. 60 watts per channel. Way better than any new amp for $245.

    https://minneapolis.craigslist.org/hnp/ele/d/adcom-quality-535-pwr/6399991841.html

    That leaves enough money for a new UTurn Orbit Custom with acrylic platter, Grado cartridge and cue lever. $349

    I normally shy away from vintage for new folks, but I know this gear well- I sold Adcom too- and it's reliable and sounds great and will make a super nice system.

    Make sure to get a demo on everything to prove it all works. These are very good prices. If you need help hooking it up, I can walk you through it by phone.
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2017
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  3. jmkeuning

    jmkeuning Member

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    Thank you! I will try to check out and buy that amp set this weekend. I’m sure nervous about speakers though for some reason that I can’t explain.

    How does a person go about testing this equipment before I buy it? I can imagine that once I own an amp I can bring it with me, along with my iPhone and some aux cables, to test speakers, but how do I test the amp(s)? Is it just a matter of having the guy turn up the volume and move through the various settings?
     
  4. HiFi Guy

    HiFi Guy Well-Known Member

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    Pretty much. Have him connect it to speakers.
     
  5. MikeyPD

    MikeyPD Well-Known Member

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    I have found that the folks on this board are spot-on about this stuff! But if you ever want to speak to someone in person... Jerry Raskin's Needle Doctor in St Louis Park, MN is full of people that know this stuff inside and out. I live in Uptown Minneapolis. So we are sort of neighbors. Welcome to the fold.
     
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  6. HiFi Guy

    HiFi Guy Well-Known Member

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    And don't be afraid of the speakers. They are really nice and far better than anything new for the money.

    Should you be more comfortable with new speakers, check out the Elac B6.
     
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  7. jmkeuning

    jmkeuning Member

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    Alright, I ordered the turntable. I’ll hopefully pick up the amps this weekend. Speakers... i’m sure those ADS Speakers will hold value better than new stuff, and I’m pretty frugal so I’ll probably end up with them. It sorta comes down to cash flow between now and this upcoming holiday thing. Thanks for the good advice!
     
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  8. jmkeuning

    jmkeuning Member

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    Thanks for helping me out. I have talked to the guy selling the Adcom amps and he is selling some ADVENT Legacy II speakers which I would like to ask you about:

    https://minneapolis.craigslist.org/hnp/ele/d/advent-legacy-ii-quality/6408062012.html

    He is asking $175 which is significantly less than the ADS. I have read that the Advent IIs are good, even very good, but not great. It seems that the ADS speakers are great so should that settle it for me?

    He is also selling a MARANTZ 2226B for $375. Any reason I should look at this over the Adcoms? My house is small, so I do not think I will miss the power. I think it looks really cool, but I'm thinking it might priced at a premium and that the Adcoms are better for me right now.

    https://minneapolis.craigslist.org/hnp/ele/d/marantz-2226b-classic-quality/6416662623.html

    Comments are appreciated! If I do this right I might be in music bliss tomorrow night.
     
  9. HiFi Guy

    HiFi Guy Well-Known Member

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    Wow! You keep running into gear I sold or know well.

    Pass on the Advents for a few reasons:

    The ADS are worlds better and worth the money.

    The Advents have foam woofer surrounds. They will deteriorate over time. The ADS woofers have a rubber surround and should be trouble free. The ADS sound far better too.

    The Marantz is a really nice piece, but I'd still go Adcom. The Adcom has more power, and seperates give you options- like to could upgrade just the preamp down the road. Also, the Adcom sounds better- and for less money.
     
  10. BHD

    BHD Member

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    Check out used gear at HiFi Sound in Minneapolis. I've seen some amazing deals there. I'm not affiliated with them in any way but I've been a customer for thirty years. Keep an eye out for vintage tube gear, sometimes people will give you stuff for free to get rid of it even though it sounds great.
     
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  11. jmkeuning

    jmkeuning Member

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    I got the ADS speakers and the ADCOM amps. I’ve stayed up too late a few nights listening to music. It’s really great. The turntable showed up and it’s all set up and working like a champ.

    The guys who sold me the equipment were real characters. Very unique individuals.
     
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  12. HiFi Guy

    HiFi Guy Well-Known Member

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    I'm glad it worked out for you. The ADS really are something special. I couldn't afford them when I was selling them, but they made a lasting impression.
     
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  13. jmkeuning

    jmkeuning Member

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    Hi I’m back. I’ve really been enjoying the music lately and I’m here with an upgrade question. In the interest of pursuing the goal of getting the best speakers I can afford, what do you think about these:

    Thiel CS2 Coherent Source Loudspeakers - Pair - $550 https://minneapolis.craigslist.org/hnp/ele/d/thiel-cs2-coherent-source/6500354125.html

    This is my current setup:

    Speakers ADS L810

    ADCOM GFA 535 amp

    ADCOM GTP-400 pre-amp

    I’m curious to know if you think these speakers represent a meaningful/discernible improvement over the ADS L810. I feel like if I had a side by side comparison I might be able to form an opinion, but just going to visit the guy to listen on his equipment won’t be enough for me to know if this is an upgrade. Also will my amp handle them.
     
  14. HiFi Guy

    HiFi Guy Well-Known Member

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    If you want to upgrade your system, I'd look at the preamp.
     
  15. jmkeuning

    jmkeuning Member

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    Anything in here I should collect and sell of the rest?

    https://minneapolis.craigslist.org/dak/ele/6501377132.html

    $900

    Adcom 6002 Power Amplifier runs 175 Watts per Channel Bridged
    Adcom ACE-515 AC Enhancer
    Adcom GFS-6 6 Pair Speaker Selector
    Adcom GFP-565 Pre-Amplifier
    Adcom GCD-575 CD player
    Dbx 3bx Dynamic Range Expander
    Applied Research and Technology EQ-341 Equalizer
    Cerwin Vega RE-30 Speakers
     
  16. HiFi Guy

    HiFi Guy Well-Known Member

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    You definitely want the GFP-565. Their second best preamp and has a really good phono section. The GCD-575 is a decent player. I'd rather have your amp than the 6002 amp. Ditto the speakers.
     
  17. jmkeuning

    jmkeuning Member

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    I am better off waiting for a preamp to come up for sale that I grab for around $300. Here’s my estimates of the resale value of the various gear. If I was able to sell off everything I’d be paying $325 for the preamp. That assumes I actually sell the stuff without having any of it break. (Not to mention that selling this stuff would be a major time suck)

    What’s the other adcom preamp I should look for?

    Adcom 6002 Power Amplifier - no history. Call it $200

    Adcom ACE-515 AC Enhancer - $60

    Adcom GFS-6 6 Pair Speaker Selector - $15

    Adcom GFP-565 Pre-Amplifier $300 - $400

    Adcom GCD-575 CD player - $100

    Dbx 3bx Dynamic Range Expander $100

    Applied Research and Technology EQ-341 Equalizer $10

    Cerwin Vega RE-30 Speakers $100 if that
     
  18. HiFi Guy

    HiFi Guy Well-Known Member

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    The GFP-750 is the best they ever made. Simply fantastic. You'd still need an outboard phono stage though as it has none.

    IMG_2261.JPG
     
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  19. Sturgus

    Sturgus Well-Known Member

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    I agree with @HiFi Guy your pre-amp is the weaker link. While I like the Theil's I think the ADS are just as good and they sound more alike than different. Since looking to upgrade maybe a speaker crossover mod or refresh would be a thought some where down the line. Right now I would look to upgrade the pre-amp.
     
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  20. jmkeuning

    jmkeuning Member

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    Pre-amp upgraded! I have the GFP-565 now and I am on the lookout for a GFP-750. I will get one for under $800 and then I will come back here to ask about the phono stage.
     
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