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Just came back from my first audio show and oh boy

Julf

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Okay, dumb question:

I assume that tape splicing doesn't work as well on DAT, right?

Or is it fine with with just a momentary digital glitch?
No way. Helical scan. A splice breaks a bunch of scan tracks.
 

anmpr1

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Ah, forgot about the helical aspect.
I've seen really nice DAT decks on sale for pennies on the dollar. But I've read that keeping the helical scan mechanism going is a big problem. I don't think it was ever much of a consumer format. Didn't they have copy protection, or some other digital rights management scheme incorporated in the record cycle?
 

anmpr1

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As for aesthetics, the Luxman...
Before I bought what I have, I was seriously considering a Lux integrated amp. So nice looking, and reminded me of what I'd grown up with--Japanese integrated amplifiers.

But I went with specs over looks. Not that what I have looks bad, but it isn't Luxman league. Not that the specs of Luxman are bad, but it isn't Benchmark league.

Also, I was kind of worried about service and support. Lux used to be an important brand in the US. But now their presence is pretty minimal. If there's a question or a problem, I can call Syracuse NY and talk to someone who will understand me. Not sure if I can call Yokohama and get the same results.
 

Julf

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I've seen really nice DAT decks on sale for pennies on the dollar. But I've read that keeping the helical scan mechanism going is a big problem.
Indeed. One of those "it is a miracle that it works at all" technologies.

I don't think it was ever much of a consumer format. Didn't they have copy protection, or some other digital rights management scheme incorporated in the record cycle?
Yes, just like MiniDIsk, DCC and CD-R (consumer versions) it had SCMS (Serial Copy Management System), basically just one bit that tells the recorder it is a copy, and to prevent second-generation copies. From a technology point of view, pretty much a honor scheme.
 

LTig

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Patek Phillipe watches cost >50-100x more than a Casio G-Shock; nobody claims the Patek is more accurate than the G-Shock, but people will pay for more the Patek for a variety of other reasons (status, artistry, etc.).
Listened recently to an interesting radio feature: A guy told the story of a watch he inherited from his grand father. He wore it for a year or so and then it had a failure. He brought it to a watchmaker who examined the watch and estimated repair cost of some € 2,000. The guy literally fell over but then the watchmaker told him that the watch was worth € 20,000 - it was a Patek Phillipe! And it had to be repaired at the company which takes several months time.

Since it was such an expensive watch the guy agreed to fix it. In the mean time (10 years) it broke several times again, and until now he has invested some € 8,000 for keeping it in working order. I'm not sure that this is the kind of inheritment the original buyer had in his mind believing the ads of Patek Phillipe ...
 

watchnerd

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Listened recently to an interesting radio feature: A guy told the story of a watch he inherited from his grand father. He wore it for a year or so and then it had a failure. He brought it to a watchmaker who examined the watch and estimated repair cost of some € 2,000. The guy literally fell over but then the watchmaker told him that the watch was worth € 20,000 - it was a Patek Phillipe! And it had to be repaired at the company which takes several months time.

Since it was such an expensive watch the guy agreed to fix it. In the mean time (10 years) it broke several times again, and until now he has invested some € 8,000 for keeping it in working order. I'm not sure that this is the kind of inheritment the original buyer had in his mind believing the ads of Patek Phillipe ...
Interesting story, but...

He got bad advice or was dealing with an unskilled watchmaker.

Most Pateks use movements made by JLC, which are close relatives to standard ETA commodity movements.

He got overcharged by a factor of about 4x.
 
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I'm so glad (and saddened) that OP shared this. I felt nearly the exact same way.

Two years ago, I went to my first audio show (AXPONA). My big problem was that as a 23 year old with a couple similarly aged friends, we were nearly shunned/ignored. It was like nearly everyone believed that we wouldn't know what good audio sounded like or that we were too poor to bother with. Incredible really. I guess the good news was that only one dealer (that was selling sub-$500 speakers of course) tried to make us a sales pitch.

Most of the rooms I went in were playing music that were far too harsh, bright, & generally not enjoyable. Having loved Magnepans/ribbon speakers, I went into the rooms with MartinLogan electrostatic speakers and, while not the worst offenders, were similarly too intense. The only systems I (and my group) ended up truly enjoying were the Carver Amazing Line Source, the Technics SB-R1, and a Korean speaker that I (regretfully) don't remember. I walked in expecting my mind to be blown with endless $10k+ speakers, but I walked out disappointed & happy I own my old Rectilinear III speakers.

To be completely frank, I think a lot of this equipment is designed by & catered for people of near retirement age that have deep pockets & have some level of hearing loss. They don't engineer/run field trials for anyone else (i.e. musicians, younger people, etc). There is no other explanation in my honest opinion.
 
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SIY

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I'm so glad (and saddened) that OP shared this. I felt nearly the exact same way.

Two years ago, I went to my first audio show (AXPONA). My big problem was that as a 23 year old with a couple similarly aged friends, we were nearly shunned/ignored. It was like nearly everyone believed that we wouldn't know what good audio sounded like or that we were too poor to bother with. Incredible really. I guess the good news was that only one dealer (that was selling sub-$500 speakers of course) tried to make us a sales pitch.

Most of the rooms I went in were playing music that were far too harsh, bright, & generally not enjoyable. Having loved Magnepans/ribbon speakers, I went into the rooms with MartinLogan electrostatic speakers and, while not the worst offenders, were similarly too intense. The only systems I (and my group) ended up truly enjoying were the Carver Amazing Line Source, the Technics SB-R1, and a Korean speaker that I (regretfully) don't remember. I walked in expecting my mind to be blown with endless $10k+ speakers, but I walked out disappointed & happy I own my old Rectilinear III speakers.

To be completely frank, I think a lot of this equipment is designed by & catered for people of near retirement age that have deep pockets & have some level of hearing loss. They don't engineer/run field trials for anyone else (i.e. musicians, younger people, etc). There is no other explanation in my honest opinion.
I would have trouble disagreeing. AXPONA featured some of the worst sound I’ve ever encountered, worst of all in the rooms with the most expensive gear.
 

restorer-john

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To be completely frank, I think a lot of this equipment is designed by & catered for people of near retirement age that have deep pockets & have some level of hearing loss. They don't engineer/run field trials for anyone else (i.e. musicians, younger people, etc). There is no other explanation in my honest opinion.
Definitely in the case of speakers in my opinion. Searing treble that makes you want to run from the room seems to be all too common.
 

Wombat

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I don't quite get where your line is between a ridicule-worthy SET and an artistic work of art-Silver-Seven But here is the Nagra 300i:



Here are specs:

Electronic Amplification class A Power 2 x 20 watts RMS stereo into 4, 8 and 16 Ω Bandwidth 14 Hz at 56 kHz, +0/-3 dB Channel separation > 70 dB Signal-to-noise ratio: Typically 105 dB (ASA-A weighted) THD 0.8% @ 20 W Input impedance > 48 kΩ Start-up protection «Soft start» circuit Security circuit Incorrect mains voltage (115V or 230V) Output transformer removed Error in tube anode current <15mA or >180mA Consumption 120 W continuous, <1 W stand-by Mains power 100, 115, 230 V ± 10%, 50-60 Hz

Pretty decent for a tube amp, but still a tube amp.....

Cost: 22,000 CHF / USD

So is this an object of ridicule like the hypothetical 8 watt SET or worthy of praise like the Silver Sevens?

Heat-shields that impede tube heat dissipation. Mmmm.
 

anmpr1

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Heat-shields that impede tube heat dissipation. Mmmm.
Probably there to keep small hands and cat whiskers safe. Product safety attorney's advice? Customer will remove them. 300Bs on such a small chassis seems pretty ridiculous. The more I look at this thing, the more it seems to just be playing off their design history. It's not the real Nagra deal.

nagra1.jpg
 

VintageFlanker

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Yeah, I had to chuckle at the review in the latest Stereophile for the darTZeel NHB-468 monos... $170K a pair and there were problems with them which "luckily seemed to be things that could be fixed with a firmware update" JA thought. :facepalm:
Dartzeel... Oh my... :eek:

My 1K€ Apollon AS1200 is literally as powerful as these NHB-468s...and oh wait! with also far lower THD vs power. Did I missed something? Sure:

"... we believe that what can be measured is not paramount and that what is most important – in terms of emotions – cannot be measured. Theories of physics will never explain how the beauty of music can have such a profound effect on us. When it comes to music, only humans should be the judge..."
 

GrimSurfer

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Yeah, I had to chuckle at the review in the latest Stereophile for the darTZeel NHB-468 monos... $170K a pair and there were problems with them which "luckily seemed to be things that could be fixed with a firmware update" JA thought. :facepalm:
Oh good. I'll buy two them and wait until the next patch is released.

Because I'm feeling lucky...
 

digicidal

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Dartzeel... Oh my... :eek:

My 1K€ Apollon AS1200 is literally as powerful as these NHB-468s...and oh wait! with also far lower THD vs power. Did I missed something? Sure:

"... we believe that what can be measured is not paramount and that what is most important – in terms of emotions – cannot be measured. Theories of physics will never explain how the beauty of music can have such a profound effect on us. When it comes to music, only humans should be the judge..."
The ironic thing is that I agree 100% with the last sentence. The part I disagree with is that this also applies to the gear being used to reproduce that music. The music itself can only be judged by the listener... however, there is only a very small amount of "art" involved in gear - and that's merely the chassis design elements. Subjective reviews/reviewers always try to marry the two as being inseparable parts of the whole... yet I only very, very rarely hear/read a discussion over which brushes, linen or pigments were used for a particular painting, or which brand of knife/pan/stove a chef used while creating his masterpiece entree.

Imagine if an actual music review was written in the same way:
"While this album has some great tunes with some amazing riffs on it, the guitar was a knock-off strat so no serious listener should bother..." :facepalm:
 
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VintageFlanker

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The music itself can only be judged by the listener... however, there is only a very small amount of "art" involved in gear - and that's merely the chassis design elements. Subjective reviews/reviewers always try to marry the two as being inseparable parts of the whole... yet I only very, very rarely hear/read a discussion over which brushes, linen or pigments were used for a particular painting, or which brand of knife/pan/stove a chef used while creating his masterpiece entree.

Imagine if an actual music review was written in the same way:
"While this album has some great tunes with some amazing riffs on it, the guitar was a knock-off strat so no serious listener should bother..." :facepalm:
Sure thing. But, in the context, what audiophile companies are claiming is not related to music itself, but to music reproduction.
 

Julf

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Sure thing. But, in the context, what audiophile companies are claiming is not related to music itself, but to music reproduction.
I think the point was that reproduction is science, and objectively verifiable, while music is art and a question if individual preferences.
 

Tks

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There is so much variety and who can realistically remember what every individual piece of equipment sounded like.
The point is to leave an impression, the only thing you're supposed to remember is how you felt at the time. No one actually has any serious auditory sound signature memory when going to places and trying things out like that. Heck it's even worse considering fatigue instantly sets in in places with loud showroom floors.

when I asked if there good for listening to Metallica for example, his eyes nearly popped out of their sockets and he tried really hard to convince me they are not for me. Ok dude, if you don't want my money, suit yourself.
We need more of this. But then again audio shows flop real hard by not letting folks demo their own music on speakers (I get that some troll could play some stupid nonsense, but just having someone verify that the music to be played is fine, would be nice).
 

digicidal

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I've considered making a test CD for demos that just had 30-second samples of 4-5 genres I like (but find difficult for speakers)... and then a track of a sweep and a long one of just pink noise. Since it's likely much easier to pick out real problems FR-wise at least using those, and will cut down on the time spent listening to the salesperson. Either they will immediately understand you're not falling for flowery descriptions and leave you alone, or they will end the demo session - both of which will speak volumes about whether you want to do business with them or not. ;)
 

anmpr1

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Not sure if they still have them, probably not, but when I was in the Army in Germany there was an Exchange audio (and I think camera) store at the Frankfurt Air Base (as I recall). A large warehouse like affair. Major manufacturers sported displays, and most gear featured a substantial military discount. It was popular for guys getting discharged to order whatever they liked, and the manufacturer would drop ship it to their stateside address (usually a parent's home).

It was the first time I saw Accuphase gear. You could tell that it was a 'step up' from the usual Pioneer-Technics-Sansui-Kenwood thing. With an enhanced price-tag to go along. I recall the big JBL L300 monitors, along with the popular L100. Plenty of AR, KLH, Bose, etc.

The thing is, none of the gear back then was really high-priced. Maybe McIntosh was the most expensive. But Mac then was not the current "through the roof" McIntosh. Back then they were selling long-term 'buy it and forget it, keep-it-forever' value. The tweako "let's sell high priced idiotic magic to idiots" scene hadn't taken hold of audio, yet. Back then, pretty much no matter what you bought you got something whose value was reasonably related to its price, relative to what anyone else was selling.
 

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