What was the first component (or components) you purchased and what year was it?

What was the first component (or components) you purchased and what year was it?
Here it is
97% (116 votes)
Never bought a thing
3% (4 votes)
Total votes: 120

In light of last week's question, it seems appropriate for reader Glenn Bennett to ask: "Let's see how far back we can go. I caught the bug with a Knight reel-to-reel in 1955!" <P> What was the first component (or components) you purchased and what year was it?

SK's picture

The first component I bought was a Sony Discman in 1988. Been drooling over high end stuff since i was 12 ( i am 38 now ) . Bought my first high-end gear this March.

Daniel's picture

My first separate hi-fi component purchase was a very cheap Sherwood integrated and a pair of Wharfedale Delta 30 speakers. It must've been 1989 or 1990. It was with the amp that I first tested the (at the time) new-fangled theory about the value of supports, by kludging together a suspended platform from a plank of wood and several wire coat-hangers. It was jaw-to-floor time, when I suddenly heard the stereo image stretch beyond the speakers for the first time!

Mike Agee's picture

Was given a crystal radio kit in about '69, 11 yrs old. Used paper route money to take out a loan (!?) in '71 to buy a Sharp (I think) reel to reel. Paid cash in '74 for a Dynaco ss integrated amp kit. As of ten years ago, my old college roommate was still using that and the Dynaco FM tuner kit that followed.

Jens, Denmark's picture

Ever since I laid my eyes on the Pink Triangle record player in 1985, I was absolutely stunned. I had to have one of those! Even though a couple of years later I bought a pair of Snell speakers and loved their sound, I still consider the PT my first and only real audio love. I bought one in 1990, in black. I later got my hands on the beautiful rosewood version, which still sits on my shelf today.

j.e.n.'s picture

Pilot receiver, Dual 1009 SK turntable, and a pair of AR4x speakers. A cartridge was thrown in for 1¢. Total cost approximately $400. The year was around 1965!

Jim Green's picture

A GE AM FM stereo radio in 1963 (as I remember). My first stereo was my parents' Philco bought in 1960. Had ElectroStatic satellites and a woofer in the cabinet. The first stereo I bought was a Panasonic AM FM Turntable w/ stand alone speakers. Sounded great in my bedroom, 1969. It cost $85.

Sherd's picture

The year was 1974 and I purchased a Sherwood receiver and Technics turntable—wow!

Steve V's picture

My entry into good stereo was when my Dad bought me a Teac A-150 cassette deck in 1976 or 1977. I wanted a cheap recorder just to play with, but he bought me this to get me to share in his stereo hobby. It worked!

Will's picture

1973 Sherwood Receiver, Pioneer turntable, and Advent loudspeakers.

Daniel C's picture

First thing I bought with my own money was a Panasonic receiver and a tethered turntable; don't remember the speakers. Bought it at Burstein-Applebee in Cinderella City Mall in Englewood, Colorado—probably around 1970. I caught the bug from my dad who turned me on to a Wilcox-Gay r2r.

Wilden's picture

Bose 300 series back in 1990. Big mistake, I know. But hey, I was 20 and was easily impressed. Never bought Bose again. I'm 38 now and own a pair of Maggies. Oh yeah...

Javier G.'s picture

Wow! I can't remember when I bought my first component that I actually loved. But I'm pretty sure it was my Adcom GFA-535 after Sam Tellig raved about it and it fit my budget after I left school. (I have subscribed to Stereophile since 1986.)

David Gilbert's picture

I convinced my dad to buy me a stereo receiver in, I believe, 1961. We trudged over to Gem Electronics on Long Island and returned with a tubed Harmon Kardon (which my teenage friends and I referred to as a Karmon Hardon.)

lon's picture

My first quality piece was a Marantz 4140 integrated amp. I bought it new in 1976 and just retired it in Feb 'o8! That amp still rocks! Many thanks, Saul & Co.

HifiDan's picture

I would not call it hi-fi, it was a sort of boombox, my first year in college, The year 1971, cost $189.

Jim Ronda's picture

Smaller Advent speakers; bought in the early 1970s; thanks to a 2006 review by Robert Reina, I had the Advents refurbished. They do sound wonderful!

George Melkonian's picture

The first real components that I ever bought would have been somewhere around 1971, 72. Money was in short supply so my wife and I went to a store in San Francisco called Pacific Stereo that was a Dynaco dealer. They also sold the Dynakits which were cheaper and they were having a half price sale on the kits! So, in kit form we bought a Stereo 120, a Pat4 and an AF-6 AM-FM tuner. And because of the money we saved by buying the kits at half price we were able to afford a pair of the Advent speakers (the vinyl enclosure). The electronics were replaced many years ago but for sentimental reasons I haven't been able to discard those pieces and until just a few years ago when the drivers gave out, the Large Advents had been doing service down stairs in the exercise room all this time. Putting together a system (literally) hasn't been as much fun since then.

chuck myers's picture

Utah speakers & Marantz receiver in 1976.

Bob Lennox's picture

I bought my first real stereo in 1974 at Pacific Stereo in Inglewood Calif. The salesman guided me, based on what I could afford to pay. I walked out the door with two pairs of Large Advent speakers, which he demoed for me in the showroom.They were stacked one upon the other in each channel and were mindblowing. He also recommended a Kenwood receiver (about 100Wpc, if I remember right), and a Dual 1229Q turntable with a Shure V-15 cartridge. The system sounded incredible and started me on a lifelong journey of enjoying music on great audio gear. It's a wonderful hobby and alot of fun. I recently took Michael Fremers advise and dived back into vinyl. He was right all along, and I'm now enjoying the pursuit of high-end records.

dude's picture

I've got an Onkyo CP- 1012F turntable and Klipsch kg2s bought, god, who remembers, 1981, 1982.

Alan's picture


Iqbal Mustafa's picture

An old German Radio Gram SOBEL (something like that) for 10 pounds sterling from a junk yard. Gorgeous wood, 18" woofer, radio, and a changer with crystal stylus. At all night parties it provided seating for five with lid down. It was my neighbors' nemesis and bad for the foundation ... that was 1965. The silky valve sound still haunts my ears, though I go over Niagra falls every night with my Focal Electras driven by Krells today—with a Dual turntable and Grado reference cartridge

kenny's picture

Two purchases come to mind because I can't remember which was first. One was a BIC 940 turntable and the other a Nikko TRM 600 integrated amp. I saved my paper route money to get them so it must have been in '74 or '75. BTW, my son is still using the amp

Stephen still listening to Mac's picture

My own was a McIntosh 1700 receiver in 1968, which I just recently passed on to my son, still functioning after all these years. I have listened to high-end in the shops since the mid fifties. My dad had a Fisher stereo hi-fi when stereo first made its debut because we could not afford McIntosh in those days on a postal worker's salary. Trains and ping pong showed us what stereo could do, so we bought two speakers and the rest is history.

Joyo Loe's picture

My first audio component was an Audio Innovations integrated amp series 500. Purchased used one in 1995, if I am not mistaken. Loved it so much. Good stuff.

Martin McDonnell's picture

Technics SA300 reciever, Technics SL1700 turntable with a Stanton 681EEE cartridge, Avant ?? 3-way speakers and a Sharp cassette player all in 1978. Loved it at the time.

mike eschman's picture

Dynaco PAT4a, ST120, and a25 speakers, and an AR turntable.

Rick's picture

Pioneer system (SX-450 receiver, 3-way speakers w/ 10" ported woofer, 2" soft dome mid (!), cone tweeter) and BSR (?) TT. 1975, I think.

ed six's picture

Bose 201, Vector Research receiver, Onkyo turntable in about 1984 (that was all a 16-year-old could afford).

Eduardo Gutierrez's picture

1989: I bought a linear tracking Hitachi turntable, model HT-MD46 with the money I got after selling dad's profesional TV instrument. It was a purchase for the future in case no more turntables were made. I was 16 years old. 1991: I moved to digital audio, after checking offers from Optimus, NAD, Carver, MTX SoundCraftsmen and ADCOM I bought a harman kardon HD 7600 II, based on reviews, magazine ad and brand reputation, it was November or December 1991. I still keep it and still works in a secondary system.