You are here

Log in or register to post comments
Bluesbob
Bluesbob's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 weeks 6 days ago
Joined: Dec 22 2005 - 11:00am
"The Entry Level" column

I was pleased to read that Stephen Mejias' column "The Entry Level is going to be featured in the magazine. It will be about "truly affordable high-end products".
I was just wondering if it will take into account all of the used equipment out there which was considered state-of-the-art for its' time but still sounds good and now is affordable, especially compared to the prices of today's upper echelon of products.
Specifically, I think alot of older pre-amps and amps are still viable options today and I'd like to know more about them. Not so much digital sources and speakers, as I think much advancement has occured in those types of components.
Thanks.

Editor
Editor's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 1 day ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 8:56am
Re: "The Entry Level" column


Quote:
I was just wondering if it will take into account all of the used equipment out there which was considered state-of-the-art for its' time but still sounds good and now is affordable, especially compared to the prices of today's upper echelon of products.

No, that is not what "The Entry Level" will be covering. As we are continually posting Stereophile's reviews of classic products in our website archives - where at least 1500 such reviews and articles are now available - surely those reviews should offer you what you want?

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

Buddha
Buddha's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 1 month ago
Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: "The Entry Level" column

While I still think "entry level" relegates the subject a bit to 'junior' status, I welcome the return in a new guise of the Audio Cheapskate.

Stephen should write it under the nom de plume Steve Saijem!

Bluesbob
Bluesbob's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 weeks 6 days ago
Joined: Dec 22 2005 - 11:00am
Re: "The Entry Level" column


Quote:
No, that is not what "The Entry Level" will be covering. As we are continually posting Stereophile's reviews of classic products in our website archives - where at least 1500 such reviews and articles are now available - surely those reviews should offer you what you want?

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

Well, yes and no. Yes when those reviews are posted and no when they're not. I was thinking more along the lines of comparisons of older and new equipment. See my sig!

JIMV
JIMV's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: Jan 31 2008 - 1:46pm
Re: "The Entry Level" column


Quote:

Quote:
No, that is not what "The Entry Level" will be covering. As we are continually posting Stereophile's reviews of classic products in our website archives - where at least 1500 such reviews and articles are now available - surely those reviews should offer you what you want?

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

Well, yes and no. Yes when those reviews are posted and no when they're not. I was thinking more along the lines of comparisons of older and new equipment. See my sig!

The original reviews compare the gear to what was new AT THAT TIME...I believe the question is more about comparing the old to today's gear of equal price...The Old speaker selling for $2K today against today's $2K products...

Not real reviews but simply comparisons...

Monty
Monty's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 16 2005 - 6:55pm
Re: "The Entry Level" column


Quote:
While I still think "entry level" relegates the subject a bit to 'junior' status, I welcome the return in a new guise of the Audio Cheapskate.

Stephen should write it under the nom de plume Steve Saijem!

Gillet's lawyers would be all over him.

Drtrey3
Drtrey3's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 months 1 week ago
Joined: Aug 17 2008 - 2:52pm
Re: "The Entry Level" column

And people might think Saijem was a Muslim name and get nervous on planes and stuff.

Trey

Jim Tavegia
Jim Tavegia's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 4:27pm
Re: "The Entry Level" column

I'm nervous already and I'm not even thinking about getting on a plane. But, is affordable being defined here as any single piece of gear under $1,000.00? Or is it lower than that?

Editor
Editor's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 1 day ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 8:56am
Re: "The Entry Level" column


Quote:
is affordable being defined here as any single piece of gear under $1,000.00?

That's correct, Jim.

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

Buddha
Buddha's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 1 month ago
Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: "The Entry Level" column


Quote:

Quote:
is affordable being defined here as any single piece of gear under $1,000.00?

That's correct, Jim.

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

But then what interconnects will he use?

Jim Tavegia
Jim Tavegia's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 4:27pm
Re: "The Entry Level" column


Quote:

Quote:

Quote:
is affordable being defined here as any single piece of gear under $1,000.00?

That's correct, Jim.

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

But then what interconnects will he use?

Bailing wire...it has the profound affect of keeping everything where it needs to be. Nothing too fancy here.

If things get too loose, then barbed wire will get the call.

djlackey5
djlackey5's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Feb 25 2009 - 6:34pm
Re: "The Entry Level" column

OK JA,
Stereophile responds to all the whining about the high-priced items you choose to review by giving us "The Entry Level." On one hand, thanks....more affordable gear will be a welcome addition to your fine publication.

On the other hand....prepare for more whining. Most likely, 99% of your readers already have a decent entry-level (or in most cases, better than that) system, and look to you for ideas about upgrading.

While most gripers scold you (and sometimes cancel their subscriptions) for too many megabuck components, I believe that it is NOT entry-level items they would prefer to see, but the middle-ground. While I know every reader has his/her own wish list, my "perfect Stereophile" would review: 50% mid-range gear (I don't know...maybe $1000-$7500....here's a raging debate waiting to be had); 25% entry-level; and 25% state-of-the-art.

For the last few years, the mix has seemed to skew toward the megabuck, with occasional bones thrown to the entry-level (Hey, here's another mini-monitor that punches above its weight-class!).

In the November 2010 issue, I was really happy to see the reviews of the Focal Chorus 826W (on the cover to boot), the Simaudio i3.3 and the NuForce CDP-8. These "real world" products (countered by the other-worldly Magico Q5) mark the first issue I can remember where the majority of full reviews are of products I (and many of your readers) could possibly consider buying! Thank you! Bravo! A new trend? Please!

(note - also sent as a Letter to the Editor)

Drtrey3
Drtrey3's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 months 1 week ago
Joined: Aug 17 2008 - 2:52pm
Re: "The Entry Level" column

I think JA takes a pervers pleasure from the whining. Crabb told him that a vigorous letters section is a sign of a healthy mag. And let's face it, some of them are inadvertently high comedy.

Trey

JIMV
JIMV's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: Jan 31 2008 - 1:46pm
Re: "The Entry Level" column

Jersey, that is a good idea for debate...My mid price would run from around $500 - $4K...above that is not possible for me and below is seldom bought.

Kevin Haskins
Kevin Haskins's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 13 2009 - 8:18am
Re: "The Entry Level" column

I'd probably broaden the definition or at least use some flexibility in applying it. Some products defy the typical classification. For example.... a powered loudspeaker could be considered one component but in application it would replace two (amp + passive loudspeaker).

smejias
smejias's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 1 day ago
Joined: Aug 25 2005 - 10:29am
Re: "The Entry Level" column


Quote:

Quote:

Quote:
is affordable being defined here as any single piece of gear under $1,000.00?

That's correct, Jim.

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

But then what interconnects will he use?


Right now, I'm using RadioShack's stereo audio cables ($6.99/3', catalog no. 42-487). But I've also got samples coming in from Audience and AudioQuest.

Drtrey3
Drtrey3's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 months 1 week ago
Joined: Aug 17 2008 - 2:52pm
Re: "The Entry Level" column

"Right now, I'm using RadioShack's stereo audio cables ($6.99/3', catalog no. 42-487). But I've also got samples coming in from Audience and AudioQuest."

This really excites me. I have an entry level system and wonder about upgrading cables so I look forward to your report!

Trey

Buddha
Buddha's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 1 month ago
Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: "The Entry Level" column


Quote:

Quote:

Quote:

Quote:
is affordable being defined here as any single piece of gear under $1,000.00?

That's correct, Jim.

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

But then what interconnects will he use?


Right now, I'm using RadioShack's stereo audio cables ($6.99/3', catalog no. 42-487). But I've also got samples coming in from Audience and AudioQuest.

Interesting!

So, are $999.00 interconnects "entry level?"

smejias
smejias's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 1 day ago
Joined: Aug 25 2005 - 10:29am
Re: "The Entry Level" column


Quote:

So, are $999.00 interconnects "entry level?"


No, I don't think so. But I need to experiment with different cables at different price points to see where the boundaries of value/performance exist. What makes sense within a system? Does a $1000 interconnect make a big enough difference within a $500 system that it should be considered an important purchase? Seems illogical. My feeling is that once cables of any kind get up around $300-$400, we're already pushing against, if we haven't already exceeded, the perceived boundary of what can be considered "entry level" for most people who are interested in high-performance audio.

What do you think?

Elk
Elk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 7 months 1 week ago
Joined: Dec 26 2006 - 6:32am
Re: "The Entry Level" column


Quote:
So, are $999.00 interconnects "entry level?"

I hope not, but for interconnects alone this is, sadly, almost true.

A discussion of cables to connect an entire system for under $1,000.00 may be appropriate.

I am always disappointed to see "affordable" system recommendations (e.g., $1,500.00) which include $300-$500 in wire. This is not cost effective as this same money would make a greater difference elsewhere.

Additionally, it is difficult enough to get new people interested in the hobby without immediately trying to have them engage in the tweakiness of the long converted.

Recommend truly inexpensive, readily available wire (Monoprice is great for solidly functional, plenty of alternatives). Then suggest upgrades for later. If the wires are going to make a difference the beginner will appreciate it after listening to basic stuff first.

smejias
smejias's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 1 day ago
Joined: Aug 25 2005 - 10:29am
Re: "The Entry Level" column

Good points, as usual, Elk.


Quote:
Recommend truly inexpensive, readily available wire (Monoprice is great for solidly functional, plenty of alternatives).


So, is the stuff at Monoprice better than what you'd find at RadioShack? (Only one way to find out, I guess.) I know a lot of people recommend Monoprice, but I hate looking at that website -- whenever I have so many options, I'm paralyzed into choosing nothing. I was much happier to walk into RadioShack and pick from what they had in stock.

smejias
smejias's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 years 1 day ago
Joined: Aug 25 2005 - 10:29am
Re: "The Entry Level" column


Quote:

I hope not, but for interconnects alone this is, sadly, almost true.


But there are lots of much more reasonably priced interconnects. AudioQuest sent me pairs of their Alpha Snake ($22.50/0.5m pair) and G-Snake ($34/0.5m pair), for instance.

  • X
    Enter your Stereophile.com username.
    Enter the password that accompanies your username.
    Loading