You are here

Log in or register to post comments
pearsall001
pearsall001's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Feb 19 2006 - 3:41pm
Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

Let me preface this by saying that my 2 channel system before the addition of the Ultra DAC consisted of: Conrad Johnson PV14L tube preamp, Consonance CD120 player, Van Alstine OmegaStar 440EX amp, & AAD 2001 monitors. The musicality of the system was superb to put it mildly. I was extremely satisfied, "BUT". Here we go, you know what that means. The never ending quest, the relentless need to squeeze that something extra out of my system. Already being amazed at the performance of Frank's amp, I just had to try his Ultra DAC. So order it I did. The wait is finally over & here it is on my door step. I get it all hooked up & load my first CD. Bam!! what happened to the broken glass??? No, not to worry, nothing broke. What's missing is something that I never realized was there in the first place. That nasty digital edge that is the devil as far as recorded CD's are concerned. Something I suspect is there on a lot of CD players regardless of price. Some more than others. The Ultra DAC totally eliminated it. In trying to get as close as possible to analog sound from a digital CD, the Ultra DAC is a marvel. What comes to mind is absence of fatigue, with no digital glass breaking, the music is just so much smoother. I also noticed a better separation, depth, & amazing dynamics. The voices are so crisp & addicting. Now don't forget, the CD120 as a stand alone player is a stellar performer, but with the addition of the Ultra DAC it's now a world class performer. Extremely pleased & highly recommended!!! Good job Frank, (kudo's to your DAC gal) who is she?

mrlowry
mrlowry's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 1 month ago
Joined: May 30 2006 - 1:37pm
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

pearsall001

Don't you know how things work around here? No one ever says anything positive about Van Alstine, Legacy, or Furman. Now we're gonna have to listen to DUP strut his virtual stuff. This is a massive breech of etiquette! To make up for this transgression you must mention that you are using it with some exotic interconnect or better yet an expensive power cord. That would really raise his blood pressure. Get with the program!

Yiangos
Yiangos's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 2 weeks ago
Joined: Sep 7 2005 - 8:41am
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

People,cover your ears !!!!!! rotfl
Good one mrlowry

commsysman
commsysman's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 54 min ago
Joined: Apr 4 2006 - 11:33am
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

Yeah, DUP will have his say on that all right.

He thinks Van Alstine makes audiophile grade equipment.

That is why he says that all CD players sound alike and all cables sound alike, ETC. ETC: of course they all sound alike if you are using a Van Alstine system , or a Kenwood receiver.

Its too bad that these people can't afford or haven't yet discovered real high-end equipment, but when they come in here and pretend to know something about the differences in resolution possible with such equipment, they certainly are in over their heads. But it is easy to say that in hindsight when you have travelled that road and are looking back at where you have been.

You can only do so much with good ears and a tight budget;
I know from long experience.

But hey, most of us have to start somewhere and learn the hard way; I struggled to improve my system for 10 years or more before I really had my eyes opened by the NAD 3020, and it took another 10 years before I could really afford a system that was truly fairly high in resolution. Only then could I really start to get a handle on certain issues and take things to higher levels.

pearsall001
pearsall001's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Feb 19 2006 - 3:41pm
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!


Quote:
pearsall001

Don't you know how things work around here? No one ever says anything positive about Van Alstine, Legacy, or Furman. Now we're gonna have to listen to DUP strut his virtual stuff. This is a massive breech of etiquette! To make up for this transgression you must mention that you are using it with some exotic interconnect or better yet an expensive power cord. That would really raise his blood pressure. Get with the program!

I just love to stir up the pot!!!!

pearsall001
pearsall001's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Feb 19 2006 - 3:41pm
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!


Quote:
Yeah, DUP will have his say on that all right.

He thinks Van Alstine makes audiophile grade equipment.

That is why he says that all CD players sound alike and all cables sound alike, ETC. ETC: of course they all sound alike if you are using a Van Alstine system , or a Kenwood receiver.

Its too bad that these people can't afford or haven't yet discovered real high-end equipment, but when they come in here and pretend to know something about the differences in resolution possible with such equipment, they certainly are in over their heads. But it is easy to say that in hindsight when you have travelled that road and are looking back at where you have been.

You can only do so much with good ears and a tight budget;
I know from long experience.

But hey, most of us have to start somewhere and learn the hard way; I struggled to improve my system for 10 years or more before I really had my eyes opened by the NAD 3020, and it took another 10 years before I could really afford a system that was truly fairly high in resolution. Only then could I really start to get a handle on certain issues and take things to higher levels.

I think while traveling down that road, you fell out of the truck & hit your head a few too many times. Take a chill brother!!!! Are you talking about audio gear or picking a doctor to perform brain surgery? Geeeeeeeezzzzzzzzzzz!!!

commsysman
commsysman's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 54 min ago
Joined: Apr 4 2006 - 11:33am
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

It sort of sounds like you had an insult in mind there, or maybe even some sort of response, but couldn't quite figure out how to say anything intelligible.

Too bad you didn't actually get around to saying anything.

Better luck next time.

commsysman
commsysman's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 54 min ago
Joined: Apr 4 2006 - 11:33am
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

The simple fact is that the system you are describing, with Conrad-Johnson and Van Alstine equipment, is what an experienced audiophile would decribe as "mid-fi" or "highly colored" in nature (or, to put it more accurately, strictly second-rate, at best).

Your comments remind me of a guy who blunders into a website for Ferrari owners and starts to tell them what fabulous handling your Honda Accord has now that you put on new shock absorbers...suuure....

Its a long way from what Stereophile would describe as Class A recommended equipment; it might sneak in as Class C or D if a reviewer is feeling generous on a given day.

Try to find any Van Alstine gear in Recommended Components; I think something might have sneaked in to Class C 20 years ago, when the state-of-the-art was way below what it is now.

Not only is the stuff you are using in your system strictly second-rate, but it is very poor value for the money. I can name a better-sounding component for everything you are using in your system at less than half of the price!

Buddha
Buddha's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 11 months ago
Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

Wow.

So, just how elitist does one have to be in order to qualify as an audiophile on a free website?

Conrad Johnson as Mid Fi, I like that. Maybe you could pick me one up next time you stop by Radio Shack?

Even though I like Commsysman alot, I do take a little exception with the Ferrari analogy. We are here as audio enthusiasts, not elite equipment OWNERS.

Otherwise, Commsysman, unless you own a totally "Class A" rig, you shouldn't be here either.

Tell me, amigo...can I try and then find ALL your equipment in the Recommended Components List?

commsysman
commsysman's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 54 min ago
Joined: Apr 4 2006 - 11:33am
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

Look, the guy is just GUSHING obscenely over gear that I know sounds like mush! He practically has an orgasm on his keyboard. It makes me want to roll on the floor laughing.

I reserve the right to say what I think of it!

If his blithering goes unchallenged, some poor fool might go out and waste money on that junk.

Over the years, I have known owners of four stereo stores, whose opinions I respect, and they all say that that Conrad-Johnson gear is impossible to take seriously as high-end gear (with the possible exception of the occasional piece of obscenely-priced 'statement' gear.)...and Van Alstine gear is mostly copies of mid-fi gear of 40 years ago.

And yes, by the way, all of my gear IS rated Class A or A+ in Stereophile (or WAS until the article became dated and they dropped it out)....AYRE C5xe (A+), Vandersteen 3A with 2W subs (A), Audio Research LS-26 (essentially the same sound as the Reference 3 (A), but too new to have been reviewed)...etc.

And money or elitism has nothing to do with it; the point is that he is putting forward this stuff as if were God's gift to audiophiles. I can spend HALF of what he spent on his system, and blow it away. For example, a Rega Apollo CD for $1K, a Cambridge 540A Integrated for $600, and Vandersteen Model 2Ce's for $1500, is a $3100 system that will blow away what he has probably spent 3 times as much on. You have a problem with calling a spade a spade?

CECE
CECE's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 17 2005 - 8:16am
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

No reviews of AVA stuff, cus' I really do perceive it will blow away those grossly over priced 1/2" front panel bloated under performing highy praised stuff. How bout that pricey CHORD amplifier, that couldn't meet spec? Hmmmm, now that's high end!!! and a $40K CD spinner with more distorsion than a defective Marshall guitar amp(which uses distortion(overdrive) in the MAKING of the tones, not REPRODUCING it.) AVA ckts are so well designed and properly priced, FAST RELIABLE 800V/uS reliable, extrodinary freq response out to 500kHz....StereoPhile really needs to do some AVA, but then AVA is priced so rational, it just won't fit the mindset of audiophlakes. Where the absurd prices, mean high end sound. StereoPhile ignored McIntosh for decades as not high end, now with some 3 piece beast, which is an engineering bunch of nonsense, with a price tag to match, it is reviewed. And yes, I know, my system is just not revealing enough, to hear the differences. I have the wrong wires, no elevted speaker magic, blah blah blah. But i did save a bunch on my car insurance. And I did just have a new 200A service panel in yesterday. So i can have space for a few new breakers for outlets. No audio grade breakers though, just some GE regular electron flowing devices. Now I can finally get the orange non audio grade ext cord off the floor, and put in my extra outlets for my amps. 4800W RMS capable of AVA sonic bliss takes a lota current when cranked. But it sure do sound fine and LIVE. I really am looking for the time I see some AVA stuff reviewed in StereoPhile, they finally got around to Legacy after 20 something years......

commsysman
commsysman's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 54 min ago
Joined: Apr 4 2006 - 11:33am
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

Speaking of people who think Van Alstine gear is great-sounding....Heeeeaaaars DUP!!!!

Take your circuit breakers and crawl back in your log, Grelber....

Buddha
Buddha's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 11 months ago
Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!


Quote:
Look, the guy is just GUSHING obscenely over gear that I know sounds like mush! He practically has an orgasm on his keyboard. It makes me want to roll on the floor laughing.

I reserve the right to say what I think of it!

If his blithering goes unchallenged, some poor fool might go out and waste money on that junk.

Over the years, I have known owners of four stereo stores, whose opinions I respect, and they all say that that Conrad-Johnson gear is impossible to take seriously as high-end gear (with the possible exception of the occasional piece of obscenely-priced 'statement' gear.)...and Van Alstine gear is mostly copies of mid-fi gear of 40 years ago.

And yes, by the way, all of my gear IS rated Class A or A+ in Stereophile (or WAS until the article became dated and they dropped it out)....AYRE C5xe (A+), Vandersteen 3A with 2W subs (A), Audio Research LS-26 (essentially the same sound as the Reference 3 (A), but too new to have been reviewed)...etc.

And money or elitism has nothing to do with it; the point is that he is putting forward this stuff as if were God's gift to audiophiles. I can spend HALF of what he spent on his system, and blow it away. For example, a Rega Apollo CD for $1K, a Cambridge 540A Integrated for $600, and Vandersteen Model 2Ce's for $1500, is a $3100 system that will blow away what he has probably spent 3 times as much on. You have a problem with calling a spade a spade?

You totally remind me of somebody here...

"...I have known owners of four stereo stores, whose opinions I respect, and they all say that that Conrad-Johnson gear is impossible to take seriously as high-end gear..."

Dude! Do they work for NASA, as well?

Glad to hear you have the validation of Stereophile's Letter Grades behind your gear choices. Maybe he can listen for himself and decide instead of taking a list out shopping with him?

So, you run out and buy "rated gear" that someone else tells you about, yet you are afraid on other people's behalf that based on what some guy says on a forum thread they will run out and buy a piece of gear you don't approve of?

Hey, either way, your talking about zombie "list readers" who "shop as they're told" no matter which side of this argument you are on.

You're hitting us with the "do as I say, not as I do" paradox.

(pause)

I'll even argue your next point ahead of time: It is beyond coincidence that exactly every piece of gear you buy just "happened" to get reviewed and rated "A" by Stereophile. Somebody is a sheep here, and it ain't our CJ guy!

I have no problem with you calling a spade a spade. I hope you have no problem with me saying that your claims of "audiophile buddies" who listen on your behalf and the way you choose gear from a list has a ring of "Baaaah" to it.

(Mostly just fucking with ya, man. I agree with you most of the time...one last question: You ever listen to any gear that Stereophile didn't review? That's my main complaint about the RC list and the grades - they act as tacit commercials for the reviewed gear and audiophiles who are too easily influenced by others opinion can get fooled into thinking that's the whole marketplace.)

CECE
CECE's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 17 2005 - 8:16am
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

commysman what a fool!!! Now THIS is entertainment!!!! AVA 40 year old stuff, what a clown AVA with it's 800V/uS slew rates, incredible freq responses. Reliability that beats anything you compare it too. But audio nudnicks need that price tag to impress themselves.... Cus' the guy who owned a stereo store, said....yeah, we know those store owners are all about knowing what is right. What's right is what sells and makes them the most profit, and if the brand is not what they make the most % off of, then it's not as good. Keep em coming Commysman...funny stuff.

RGibran
RGibran's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 12 months ago
Joined: Oct 11 2005 - 5:50pm
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

C

CECE
CECE's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 17 2005 - 8:16am
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

None of my stuff was reviewed in StereoPhile, the Legacys where all done AFTER I owned either the Focus or Whispers...I'd surely like to see some AVA tests done, when it smokes the under performing over priced units like Chord or McIntosh 3 piece grossly high priced stuff. McIntosh do look cool, but I ain't buying a light show, I'm buying SOUND. Nothing like buying cus' someone elses PERCEPTION and ideas said to get it. Now that's a person with an ear for sound!!! Make sure you keep the list out near your stuff to impress the unknowing and list impressed. AVA is on teh lists of people who know how to buy quality at mortal prices. So ya have money left over to get some CD/SACD

commsysman
commsysman's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 54 min ago
Joined: Apr 4 2006 - 11:33am
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

I buy because I like what I HEAR!!!!

A review or a rating has often interested me enough to audition something, but I do not buy that way very often; I often find that the review or rating does not agree with what I hear, and I move on.

I just bought the AYRE C5xe because I LISTENED to it and it is awesome. The rave reviews in Stereophile and The Absolute Sound interested me enough to seek it out and LISTEN extensively before I bought it (and the store where I auditioned it uses the same speakers I do, which made the audition highly relevant to My system!).

I bought the LS-26 WITHOUT benefit of a review, but it sounds the same as the REFERENCE 3 to my ears, and is slightly cheaper (the REFERENCE 3 reviews and Class A rating occured AFTER my purchase...)

I also bought the Vandersteen 3 speakers when they first came out, in 1991 I think, and the 3A somewhat later. They were not ranked Class A by Stereophile until years later.

So what is this garbage you are spouting about me running out and buying gear based on ratings; that really is totally false, as the above shows, and really a cheap shot!
You should be ashamed to say stuff like that without knowing more facts.

And just who are these "audiophile buddies who listen on my behalf"? That is complete fiction. NO ONE listens on my behalf. I think you invented that from scratch.

Give me a LITTLE credit for good sense here, please. My money comes too hard to buy anything without a LOT of consideration and listening; I am a retired college professor, not one of these guys who can drop 10 grand like it was petty change...lol. It took me another year of listening and consideration AFTER Stereophile made it Product of the Year before I bought the AYRE....

By the way; you sure turn things around! You challenged me as to whether my gear was in Recommended Components or not and I answered your question. Then you try to make it sound as if I was bragging about it and slavishly devoted to the frigging ratings. I was just answering your question.

Buddha
Buddha's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 11 months ago
Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

Sorry, Commsysman, I saw the button and had to push it.

I think you are great, I just couldn't resist fuckin' with ya.

As a bonus, I got DUP to jump on you, as well.

Please tell me you're coming to CES, I'd love to shoot the shit in person.

________________________

I'm honsetly laughing out loud.

Sometimes ya pull on a chain and nothing happens, and other times, it's a total gas!

OK, OK, settling down.

I honestly meant none of that. It just struck me in that peculiar way...

Cheers, amigo.

commsysman
commsysman's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 54 min ago
Joined: Apr 4 2006 - 11:33am
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

Had to push the button, huh?

Glad you are not not on duty in a missle silo...lol.

Peace, brother. Alles ist in ordnung.

pearsall001
pearsall001's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Feb 19 2006 - 3:41pm
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!


Quote:
I buy because I like what I HEAR!!!!

A review or a rating has often interested me enough to audition something, but I do not buy that way very often; I often find that the review or rating does not agree with what I hear, and I move on.

I just bought the AYRE C5xe because I LISTENED to it and it is awesome. The rave reviews in Stereophile and The Absolute Sound interested me enough to seek it out and LISTEN extensively before I bought it (and the store where I auditioned it uses the same speakers I do, which made the audition highly relevant to My system!).

I bought the LS-26 WITHOUT benefit of a review, but it sounds the same as the REFERENCE 3 to my ears, and is slightly cheaper (the REFERENCE 3 reviews and Class A rating occured AFTER my purchase...)

I also bought the Vandersteen 3 speakers when they first came out, in 1991 I think, and the 3A somewhat later. They were not ranked Class A by Stereophile until years later.

So what is this garbage you are spouting about me running out and buying gear based on ratings; that really is totally false, as the above shows, and really a cheap shot!
You should be ashamed to say stuff like that without knowing more facts.

And just who are these "audiophile buddies who listen on my behalf"? That is complete fiction. NO ONE listens on my behalf. I think you invented that from scratch.

Give me a LITTLE credit for good sense here, please. My money comes too hard to buy anything without a LOT of consideration and listening; I am a retired college professor, not one of these guys who can drop 10 grand like it was petty change...lol. It took me another year of listening and consideration AFTER Stereophile made it Product of the Year before I bought the AYRE....

By the way; you sure turn things around! You challenged me as to whether my gear was in Recommended Components or not and I answered your question. Then you try to make it sound as if I was bragging about it and slavishly devoted to the frigging ratings. I was just answering your question.

BINGO!!! Your first line sums it up very nicely. I also buy according to how a piece sounds. I'm very sorry that I didn't ask for your expert (????) opinion before I made all my purchases. The way you went on the attack was uncalled for & way out of line. I simply posted about a new piece that I liked. Just because you don't like it doesn't make it a crime for others who do. Your snobish attitude is a real turn off & serves no purpose. It almost sounds like you have an axe to grind with Frank which can explain your mind set. I'm sure your system sounds superb to you, the same as mine does to me. We all take different roads but we all wind up at the same destination. Great sound that is pleasing to us!!!! I am not out to please others, only myself. Take care & have a Merry Christmas!!!

commsysman
commsysman's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 54 min ago
Joined: Apr 4 2006 - 11:33am
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

It's good that you are satisfied with what you have. If it brings you pleasure, it's your money, and your time.

But when you post a certain sort of comment here, gushing specifically about how wonderful your particular gear is, it is subject to comment from those who have differing opinions. Posting it here invites comment, pro or con.

You and DUP no doubt think that there is some kind of conspiracy, and that explains why Stereophile and The Absolute Sound never review any gear from Van Alstine, Consonance, or AAD. I have listened to it, and it does not sound particularly good to me, and I would tell any friend that is interested in it that it does not give good value for the price, based on my listening experience.

Tell me, what is your definition of an elitist or "snob"? Is it someone who disagrees with your opinion of your gear, OR is it merely someone who has found other gear to sound much better?

I guess I satisfy both definitions, so I must make the grade either way. Shame on me for having ears, or an an opinion about what I hear with them.

I think the staff at Stereophile and The Absolute Sound are frequently invited to listen to new products from all of the manufacturers, and they select the ones that seem to be of most interest. The fact that they do not review ANYTHING from these manufacturers over a very long period of time may prove nothing...but, on the other hand, it just might mean they think the gear is of no interest for obvious reasons (like lack of good sound or that sort of thing...).

But whatever you do, don't EVER make the mistake of listening to any gear that ends up in Recommended Components; there is no good reason why that equpiment was reviewed, and even less reason why it is recommended; it all makes absolutely no sense and you should work very hard at ignoring it (especially if you are afraid of hearing something that sounds better than what you have...lol).

In any case, if you don't want your opinion of certain gear challenged, you are certainly posting it in the wrong place. Someone just might not agree with you (and even say so...such audacity!).

ohfourohnine
ohfourohnine's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 7:41pm
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

Here's a suggestion that anyone reading through this thread from the beginning might find reasonable: Stereophile should discontinue (or at least publish less frequently) the Recommended Lists and use the space for more coverage of music.

Failing that, more space devoted to in-depth reviews or even coverage of tweaks that seem to work beats the conferring of badges of legitimacy on groups of equipment. Consider some of the flaws inherent in the process to begin with. Suppose, for example that during the review period in question a certain $90K+ turntable was found to be head and shoulders over any other. Would that indicate that only one turntable was to be listed in Class A? Can't have that even if to do so would give an accurate ranking of the TT's considered. Better add a new class - A+. Silly, aint it.

Chances are all of us have equipment which is or has been Class A. One thing is certain, that piece of equipment is sure to fall down in or out of the Recommended list. Should we then sell it off or junk it? If it no longer appears in Class A, how can we engage in these wonderfully fruitful "my dog is bigger than your dog" exchanges?

Some of you may recall my carping about the deficiencies in the Recommended List issues in the past. This thread provides some clues as to why.

Yiangos
Yiangos's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 2 weeks ago
Joined: Sep 7 2005 - 8:41am
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

To be honest Clay,i never understood the purpose of the "recommended component list" if one is actually reading the magazine.Some would say is a quide for people who wish to purchase a system.I say it is a waste of pages.Let's just
take integrated amplifier.There more than 1000 integrated amplifiers out there.Stereophile includes 5 ot 10 in the list.What about the other 990?Are they good or bad and if i am going to listen to amps why stick with only those 10 ?
And if i am going to accept the excuse that "there were tested and founf good" why won't stereophile publish a "worst component list" so everyonr would steer away ?
Besides,i don't think a "newbie" is going to read Stereophile or TAS,if he/she ever reads hi-fi mags and if he/she does,that would be probably Stereo Sound or the likes.Anyways,i could type arguments forever.Point is , the list is space that could be used for something more meaningfull.

pearsall001
pearsall001's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Feb 19 2006 - 3:41pm
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!


Quote:
To be honest Clay,i never understood the purpose of the "recommended component list" if one is actually reading the magazine.Some would say is a quide for people who wish to purchase a system.I say it is a waste of pages.Let's just
take integrated amplifier.There more than 1000 integrated amplifiers out there.Stereophile includes 5 ot 10 in the list.What about the other 990?Are they good or bad and if i am going to listen to amps why stick with only those 10 ?
And if i am going to accept the excuse that "there were tested and founf good" why won't stereophile publish a "worst component list" so everyonr would steer away ?
Besides,i don't think a "newbie" is going to read Stereophile or TAS,if he/she ever reads hi-fi mags and if he/she does,that would be probably Stereo Sound or the likes.Anyways,i could type arguments forever.Point is , the list is space that could be used for something more meaningfull.

I really think Stereophile's list of rec. componets is quite a valuable tool. Mainly for those who can't decifer for themselves what to purchase. Without a thumbs up A rating from one of their reviewers, they guys would be lost. It's too much to expect them to go into a shop & listen for themselves. Oh, they'll do that only after the reviewers tell them what's good. There is so much good stuff out there from manuf. who will never have their gear review by Stereophile. But then again, if they deem it in their best interest to buy a nice add in the magazine, whalla!! here comes a review. What a miracle. Sorry guys, not me. I hit the road with my trusted CD's & listen for myself. If it happens to make the recommended list, big deal. Everybody have a great Holiday Season.

Jeff Wong
Jeff Wong's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 5 months ago
Joined: Sep 6 2005 - 3:28am
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

Clay - The RC list appears twice a year and if I'm not mistaken, those issues sell the biggest numbers. From a financial standpoint, I can't see the change you suggest. The list will be less useful for people who are content with their present systems (my attention to it has more to do with curiosity now, as opposed to 10 years ago when I made use of it as a shortlist for things to audition -- I'm not 100% done, but, closer than before.) Given the limitation of space in the magazine, I can picture the website covering things not possible on paper... music, under the radar gear, tweaks, DIY. This is where the community can help itself. Feedback on things we check out can form a useful well of information.

smejias
smejias's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 10 months ago
Joined: Aug 25 2005 - 10:29am
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!


Quote:
There more than 1000 integrated amplifiers out there.Stereophile includes 5 ot 10 in the list.

There are close to 40 integrated amps on our current "Recommended Components" list.

Yiangos
Yiangos's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 2 weeks ago
Joined: Sep 7 2005 - 8:41am
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

True,my mistake.Yet,you know what i mean

ohfourohnine
ohfourohnine's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 7:41pm
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

If, as you say Jeff, the Recommended List issues are a significant element of Stereophile's financial viability, then long may they live. I'd rather put up with these "You're an idiot to buy that because.." exchanges than to do without my favorite audio mag. Can't help but wonder though how much of an increase in the subscription price it might take to offset the additional newsstand revenues generated by those two bragging rights issues.

commsysman
commsysman's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 54 min ago
Joined: Apr 4 2006 - 11:33am
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

I think the Recommended Components list can be helpful for a lot of people who are considering a purchase. It can direct people to the relevant reviews themself, which are available online if you don't have back issues. It's one place one can start, at least. It gives you the opinions of a group of people who are exposed to a lot of equipment, and have distilled their experience with that equipment into a ranking of sorts.

It is certainly no substitute for auditioning the component under consideration thoroughly, hopefully in your own system if possible.

I bought my Vandersteen Model 3 speakers when they first came out, and they were only put into R.C. years later, so I never got any help from R.C. there, but I DID go to listen to the AYRE C5xe recently based on the fact that it was ranked Product of the Year and A+ in R.C., and was just the type of player I was considering. I bought that one at once after listening to it; it is superb.

I used to spend tons of time at Havens and Hardesty in Huntington Beach, which was convenient to home and work then, and listened a LOT. Now that am retired, and live out in the desert, I have no convenient place to go to for auditions. The places I can go in the L.A. area that have decent equipment are 2-3 hours drive away, so that cuts down on the times I can go hang out and audition things. I do know from many years of experience, however, that there are one or two people at certain dealers that I can get a reliable opinion from. That is another major factor in which equipment I take the time to audition. That only comes from long experience with a certain person, of course.

But anyway, R.C. is a tool I include in my initial considerations, and I would hate to see it go away. I doubt if there are very many people who go out and buy something ONLY because it is highly ranked in R.C.; that would be rather foolish, certainly. Some people in this forum seem to think that people are sheep who are going to buy solely based on R.C.; I don't know anyone like that. I don't see any gun pointed at anyone's head, lol.

mmole
mmole's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 months 5 hours ago
Joined: Aug 31 2005 - 7:29pm
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

I know that everything in audio is relative. I love it when someone shows enthusiam. My new CD player sounds wonderful to me because it's so much better than the component it replaced. For someone else this particular player isn't even worth considering.

So what happened here? A forum member loves his new DAC. It made his system sound better. It's not a choice that I would have made but so what? I love his enthusiasm. He's hearing things he never heard before. He's having fun.

As to R.C., the only problem I've ever had with it is the letter grades. I'm not sure why they're necessary. Why not just go by component subdivided by price? That is, CD players less than $1,000; $1,000-$1,999, etc. with the same capsule comments that are included now?

ohfourohnine
ohfourohnine's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 7:41pm
Re: Van Alstine Ultra DAC...Thumbs UP!!!

Assuming the financial impact of newsstand sales of the lists is significant, why not follow the route Roy suggests and maybe take it a step further to building simple compatable systems at various price levels. Ought to be useful to beginners.

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