Sound as clear as light
March 20, 2009 6:28 PM   Subscribe

Well, I'll tell you, Yanni would sound great on this system at The Great Theater in Ephesus, Turkey. A log cabin in the Bluegrass mountains would be another perfect setting for this system. Wow - the possibilities are endless.
posted by squalor (60 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

 
If this stereo can make Yanni sound great anywhere, it truly is worth it's weight in gold and I still wouldn't want to hear him sing.
posted by inthe80s at 6:35 PM on March 20, 2009


I would LOL if the winning bidder was Yanni.
posted by Jimbob at 6:35 PM on March 20, 2009


Act now and I'LL THROW IN A COPY OF NUTJOB.CSS MAXIMUM FONT IMPACT WITH WALL OF FONT TECHNOLOGY for free.
posted by BrotherCaine at 6:51 PM on March 20, 2009


You posted this because of the velvet painting of deer gazing in a meadow, right?
posted by foxy_hedgehog at 6:54 PM on March 20, 2009


Most of the asking price is probably to cover all the Monster Cables. When will people learn?
posted by hippybear at 7:04 PM on March 20, 2009


Wow, can a home audio system really cost over 100k USD?

I would be scared to death of even breathing too hard around that thing if it were mine, never mention turning it on or more.
posted by Iosephus at 7:16 PM on March 20, 2009


A 129K for some 70s vintage audio gear (that was mediocre when it was made)?

This is some sort of joke, right?
posted by Relay at 7:21 PM on March 20, 2009 [1 favorite]


What the fuck is with the fucking picture of the deer with the fucking c.1998 water reflection bullshit and the goddamn glittery frame?

SERIOUSLY WHAT IS UP WITH THAT
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 7:22 PM on March 20, 2009


you need to scroll down, the guy is continually reposting comments from audiophiles noting that his rig is waaay overpriced. his responses are preternaturally measured, which makes me think he's doing some kind of SEO. For what? Hell if I know.

The price-critical responses set a value range from 10k to 60k, which still seems like a lot for a stereo system.
posted by mwhybark at 7:27 PM on March 20, 2009


Oooh -- it has a clock in the middle.
posted by Clave at 7:36 PM on March 20, 2009


There can be only one explanation.

The stereo, looking for a new (and wealthy) host, has put itself on eBay.
posted by swift at 7:37 PM on March 20, 2009 [2 favorites]


which makes me think he's doing some kind of SEO. For what? Hell if I know.

If that's true, it's not really worth an FPP. Well, that's one reason.
posted by foxy_hedgehog at 7:48 PM on March 20, 2009


Wow, can a home audio system really cost over 100k USD?

I bought a bicycle today and the salesperson told me that 3 days ago they sold a bike for $22,000. Yes, a bicycle.
posted by You Should See the Other Guy at 8:07 PM on March 20, 2009


LOOK AT THESE FUCKING SPEAKERS

ALL FUCKING COLOR-COORDINATED WITH LOTS OF BUTTONS

LOOKS GREAT WITH A WOLF T-SHIRT

- 6 speakers. You can listen to Quadrophenia one and a half times in the time it takes most people to listen to it once. Fuck your iPod.
- The parametric equalizer uses MATH.
- Rear ambience delay effect so you can trip balls even harder
- Each speaker sits on four Dayton Audio Chrome Speaker Spikes. Feel the bling.
-All monster cables for BARBARIC sound.
- Monster Power HTS 5100 Home Theatre Reference Power Center - industry slang for "remote panty remover". Put this shit in your Camaro and watch half of Jersey follow you around.
- Rack mounted means you don't have to assemble shit

ANIMATED DEER POSTER. YOU KNOW YOU WANT THIS!
posted by Inspector.Gadget at 8:09 PM on March 20, 2009 [10 favorites]


Clear Light never sounded that good....
posted by Kronos_to_Earth at 8:16 PM on March 20, 2009


Overpriced by about $120,000.
posted by krinklyfig at 8:25 PM on March 20, 2009


Wow. 100k USD, and a Smiley face on a $189 EQ? Seriously?
posted by Monday, stony Monday at 8:28 PM on March 20, 2009 [2 favorites]


I'm so glad I waited for the sparkles to load.
posted by vespabelle at 9:42 PM on March 20, 2009


If you guys aren't interested in acquiring this gem, you might want to consider one of the seller's other items. This was in small print in the text:

P.S. Coming soon - sale of an etched full-length wall mirror (54 x 96 inches) of the New York City skyline the way it looked at the turn of the century - complete with the Brooklyn Bridge in the foreground for half a million dollars. Stay tuned.

So... I guess this means the whole thing is a joke?
posted by taz at 9:50 PM on March 20, 2009 [1 favorite]


I think this is the guy we need to put together retention gifts for AIG executives.
posted by maxwelton at 9:56 PM on March 20, 2009


So... I guess this means the whole thing is a joke?

I noticed that too. Yeah, this is guy is trolling eBay.
posted by longsleeves at 10:20 PM on March 20, 2009


*opens front door, looks out on porch*
Yay! my $130,000 stereo system is here!
*puts in cd, cranks it up to 11* (yeah, that's right...for 130k it better damn well go up to 11)

NEVER GONNA GIVE YOU UP, NEVER GONNA LET YOU DOWN!
NEVER GONNA RUN AROUND AND DESERT YOU!
NEVER GONNA MAKE YOU CRY, NEVER GONNA SAY GOODBYE!
NEVER GONNA TELL A LIE AND HURT YOU!

NEVER GONNA GIVE NEVER GONNA GIVE! GIVE YOU UP!
NEVER GONNA GIVE NEVER GONNA GIVE! GIVE YOU UP!
posted by sexyrobot at 10:34 PM on March 20, 2009 [3 favorites]


Fuck you.

Now I have that song in my head.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 10:35 PM on March 20, 2009 [2 favorites]


I don't think that is a clock. It looks like the voltage reading for the power conditioner.

I would also ship for free if I were getting an extra 120K over what my item was worth. Hell, I'd take a week off of work and set it up for them for a measly 20K extra.
posted by double block and bleed at 11:25 PM on March 20, 2009


p.s.: your favorite Yanni sucks
posted by double block and bleed at 11:26 PM on March 20, 2009


This is another huge reason I download music - I'll never be stupidly tempted to buy a system that highlights the flaws in my media.

On the other hand...

BFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFT B-B-B-B-B-B-B-B-BFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFT
BWOM BWOM BWOM
posted by saysthis at 12:26 AM on March 21, 2009


I have one already! I got it from Circuit City.
posted by JtJ at 2:42 AM on March 21, 2009


This system has a complete front 'wall of sound'

You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.
posted by mikelieman at 3:21 AM on March 21, 2009


I'm glad it has a cassette deck. I'm sure I've got an old mixtape stuck under the driver's seat of my car.

I mean, it's no Rick Astley, of course, but I've already got the tape...
posted by pompomtom at 4:49 AM on March 21, 2009


The 1970s solid state gear was the absolute nadir of reproduced sound. Even to audiophiles this stuff would not be valuable. The value of this system is more like the value of a interesting antique, but it lacks the quality or aesthetics that one might normally seek in antiques. Basically, if he gets a fifth of what he is asking he will be lucky. In the meantime he has at least given lots of people a good chuckle.
posted by caddis at 5:53 AM on March 21, 2009


mikelieman: the image you linked is likely the work of this guy. He deserves his own post.
posted by StickyCarpet at 8:13 AM on March 21, 2009


Is this something I would need high-functioning ears to understand?
posted by NikitaNikita at 8:25 AM on March 21, 2009


I actually strongly approve of this.

The seller has posted all of the complaints saying it's overpriced - so I think he's morally covered. The system LOOKS cool. And who will be buying this if anyone does? Who's so stupid as to buy this at a price twice the average US salary? A bankster!
posted by lupus_yonderboy at 8:58 AM on March 21, 2009


Is this something I would need high-functioning ears to understand?

If this is 70s solid state, as a poster above claims, I assure you that high-functioning ears will be something of a drawback in evaluating this rig positively.
posted by lupus_yonderboy at 9:00 AM on March 21, 2009


In one picture you can see, stacked waaaay at the top, the Fisher CD player he bought at K-Mart back in '87 while shopping for Cosby sweaters.
posted by CynicalKnight at 9:13 AM on March 21, 2009


Coincidentally, his next ebay auction will be for an entire CosbyTechTM soundEQ anechoic garment wardrobe. Can not split into separate auctions!
posted by BrotherCaine at 10:52 AM on March 21, 2009


What's an 'SEO'?
posted by Flashman at 12:34 PM on March 21, 2009


Can someone please do an FPP at some point that explains what all this crap is?

Right now my stereo system is clicking "Play" in some app on my laptop. Occasionally, if I want to lux it up (or my fiancee is sleeping) I listen to it with headphones.

I understand that solid state is different from digital, somehow, and that apparently 70s solid state was really bad. Other than that, I understand nothing.
posted by Deathalicious at 2:15 PM on March 21, 2009


Thats not an amplifier, this is an amplifier
posted by fistynuts at 4:23 PM on March 21, 2009


"... wall of sound... "

Mikelieman: You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.


I love the dead as much as the next guy, and that speaker setup was killer, but before they even came into existence 'wall of sound' meant something else.
posted by koeselitz at 5:21 PM on March 21, 2009


having to agree with fistynuts here
posted by caddis at 7:29 PM on March 21, 2009


Actually, this is an amp.

Deathalicious: lemme try. When we first started reproducing sound electronically, we had to use vacuum tubes. Later, the transistor was invented. Transistor-based "solid-state" devices have many advantages over tube-based devices. The first transistor-based audio devices sucked compared to high-quality tube-based devices. Some people current solid-state amplifiers still do (hence the tubes in the amp fistinuts linked to).

This guy is trying to sell expensive transistor gear he bought almost 30 years ago. Back then, there's a good chance it was inferior to similarly (or less) expensive tube gear. There's also a good chance that its performance is inferior to today's low-end (and, therefore, transistor) gear.

The guy has also made some weird choices: as I've noted above, he uses a $189 equalizer in a $100k+ system, which seem completely out of place.
posted by Monday, stony Monday at 8:46 PM on March 21, 2009


Actually, this is an amp.

I'll take the subtlety of the Wavac over the raw power of the Powersoft any day, until I need to fill an auditorium or something.
posted by caddis at 10:08 PM on March 21, 2009


I dunno, given the context, I still think this is still the most appropriate comparison.
posted by mikelieman at 1:22 AM on March 22, 2009


and to be clear, the Wall of Sound was Phil Spector's baby, even if the term was later used to refer to the Dead's very impressive speaker array. (Thank you Owsley.)
posted by caddis at 5:14 AM on March 22, 2009


I'll take the subtlety of the Wavac over the raw power of the Powersoft any day, until I need to fill an auditorium or something.


You are aware that the Wavac has some not very subtle flaws for an amplifier that is supposed to reproduce music, right?
posted by Monday, stony Monday at 10:58 AM on March 22, 2009


Didn't mean to start hifi armageddon, my ears are quite happy with my solid state Marantz set up(and I spend most of my music listening time with mp3's through headphones, the hifi doesn't travel so well). Until I can spend $350k as easily as I can pay my metafilter $5 I guess I'll just have to live with that.
posted by fistynuts at 11:13 AM on March 22, 2009


caddis: and to be clear, the Wall of Sound was Phil Spector's baby, even if the term was later used to refer to the Dead's very impressive speaker array. (Thank you Owsley.)

Hmm. The disambiguation page for the link you gave says that Phil got the phrase "wall of sound" from Stan Kenton's big band in the '40s. Interesting.
posted by koeselitz at 1:13 PM on March 22, 2009


I think to avoid this confusion the Dead actually referred to their setup as the Wall of Sounds.
posted by Flashman at 2:12 PM on March 22, 2009


Monday, stony Monday: Actually, this is an amp.

I'm going to have to disagree with you on those powersoft solid state amps. In their own FAQ they explain why the class A topology sounds best, but has the one disadvantage that when there is no sound playing the amp is operating at half of its full power, sitting there getting hot for no reason. So they opt for what they call the best compromise, the class AB topology. I only run class A topology, and yeah they get hot, but you know what? I don't turn them on if I'm not planning to play some music through them.
posted by StickyCarpet at 9:22 PM on March 22, 2009


In their own FAQ they explain why the class A topology sounds best

If you are referring to item 12 of their FAQs Amps document, I don't think this is what they mean. All they are saying is that class B has crossover distortion, but is more efficient, while class A doesn't have that kind of distortion, but is inefficient. So combining them leads to an efficient amplifier that doesn't have crossover distortion.

However, that's irrelevant for the DIGAM K20, since it's a "class D" (it works using pulse width modulation) amplifier.
posted by Monday, stony Monday at 7:10 PM on March 23, 2009


Monday, stony Monday: combining [A and B] leads to an efficient amplifier that doesn't have crossover distortion.

Experimenting with my ears and different amps, I've been surprised at how much difference the class A clearly makes. The AB actually does still have the signal discontinuity, there's also a (presumably) symmetrical mirror flip of the signal below zero.

I'm just sayin', even with the ipod and a set of bookshelf speakers, the clarity of the class A topology is noticeable, even by people just passing by.

Now, having been so well rewarded for bypassing that one signal splice, the thought of class D, where the splices themselves are what the signal is built from, is not so tempting.
posted by StickyCarpet at 9:29 PM on March 23, 2009


We may have to agree to disagree. I'm a strong objectivist when it comes to audio (but I'm no Randian). I believe that today's low distortion amplifier have such low distortion and noise that they are essentially indistinguishable from each other when they are operated in their linear range (no clipping). This is confirmed by ABX testing.

Class A designs tend to have more distortion (measured) than more mainstream class AB, G or H designs. Paradoxically, people often actually like a more distorted signal. The extreme example is guitar amplifiers, but there is also analog equipment used in recording and during live performance to "warm up" the sound, and digital plug-ins or devices that simulate various kinds of distortion for the same purpose.

So my guess is that you class A amps are adding "warmth" to your musical experience in more ways than one. And that's great. But if your goal is "straight wire with gain", then most class A amps on the market are not it.

The K20 is just an extreme example of what is possible today when high power, high efficiency, small size, low weight and low distortion are wanted.
posted by Monday, stony Monday at 10:37 PM on March 23, 2009


I am indeed running my class A amps as straight wire with gain. 1000 watts, 1 ohm, for each of the 5. Passive preamp. I stay well within the sweet spot linear center of the output power.

...then most class A amps on the market are not it.

Perhaps we have found a point of agreement, all the class A amps I use would be called old skool, presumably because they don't make them like that any more. Still, I'll stick with my class A regardless. Have you actually listened to one, and how transparent the harmonies are and how the room fills with palpable solid air?

If you are saying that all of that flipping and splicing of the sound that those other amps do is done so well, so omnipotently fast, and by such praiseworthy technology, that the resulting patchwork assembly cannot even be measured in today's world, then maybe those measuring devices have a little catching up to do.

I will concede that the class D does have its place, running a 10,000 watt subwoofer would be an excellent job for one of those.
posted by StickyCarpet at 11:42 PM on March 23, 2009


I believe that today's low distortion amplifier have such low distortion and noise that they are essentially indistinguishable from each other when they are operated in their linear range (no clipping).... Class A designs tend to have more distortion (measured) than more mainstream class AB, G or H designs.

This testing rubbage is what made those seventies solid state amps so awful. On measures of distortion and frequency response etc., they supposedly blew away the amps that had come before. Tons of globalnegative feedback reduced measured distortion to very low levels. Unfortunately, what was measured was total distortion, but the distortion which was left after all of the feedback was of odd and higher orders which turn out to be the most objectionable to the listener. Theories vary on why, perhaps the low order and even order distortion is what happens in the natural environment and we have become accustomed to it. Nevertheless, these amplifiers measured well, but sounded awful. Amp designs have progressed to employ different techniques than mere large doses of global negative feedback. However, the message here is don't blindly trust the numbers. Anybody who has heard a singled ended triode (SET) tube amp will know that very simple designs can produce marvelous sounds, yet these amps test horribly. There is a whole industry build around getting people to ignore tests and purchase blocks of wood to place on their equipment and some people use those charlatans as proof that you can't rely on your ears. Poppycock.
posted by caddis at 6:35 AM on March 24, 2009


Just for the record, I should mention that the 1000 watt stereo class A amps I'm talking about are solid state. Sometimes I move them out to events, and tubes would be too fragile for that. Of the many cliques of audiophiles, I'm what would be called a flatliner basshead. I want to have a measurable flat output spectrum, rather than subjective warmth. I also want that flat line to extend down to the 10 to 30 Hz range, which means science project levels of power to move the big transducers down there.
posted by StickyCarpet at 6:52 AM on March 24, 2009


1000 watts, 1 ohm

1 Ohm? Like, a speaker impedance of 1 ohm?

how the room fills with palpable solid air?

Thanks, but no thanks. I prefer my air breathable and gazeous.
posted by Monday, stony Monday at 10:25 PM on March 24, 2009


1 Ohm? Like, a speaker impedance of 1 ohm?

Correct. This becomes current mode, where the signal is more in the amount of current, rather than the voltage. These amps are sometimes called "cheater" amps, due to the extreme sound magnitude they can generate relative to their rated power.
posted by StickyCarpet at 2:15 PM on March 25, 2009


What kind of speakers are they? Do you drive multiple speakers per amp? The only ultra-low-impedance uses I'm familiar with involve people using something like a Crown MA-15000 to drive dozens of speakers in a distributed system.
posted by Monday, stony Monday at 7:33 PM on March 25, 2009


The subwoofer is a single-unit 1 ohm. It's two dual-coil 15" speakers mounted face to face out of phase, so you see the back of one speaker sticking out of the enclosure. Each coil is 4 ohms, so wired all in parallel they give 1 ohm. Frankly, I wouldn't have sealed up that enclosure wired at 1 ohm if I knew how hard it is to find 1 ohm class A amps, and I'm stockpiling from ebay just in case.

My speakers are generally 4 ohm, so I can put 4 speakers on each channel. If your amp can do 1 ohm, adding the extra speakers is "for free," if one speaker is at max amp volume, you can add up to 4 and keep getting more sound power from the same amp.
posted by StickyCarpet at 8:49 PM on March 25, 2009


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