What is the best equipment manual you've ever read?

The results of last week's "Vote" indicate that audiophiles do indeed read manuals

What is the best equipment manual you've ever read?
Here it is
71% (76 votes)
Never read a good one
21% (23 votes)
Like I told you, I don't read manuals
7% (8 votes)
Total votes: 107

G.C.  Van Winkle's picture

The Apt Holman preamp was a well-engineered product with an owner's manual to match.

Kevin O'Toole's picture

The manual for my Apt Holman pre-amp is still the best I've encountered.

Al Ears's picture

All McIntosh manuals, so what is with all the manual questions? B-O-R-E-I-N-G!!

TGD's picture

Vandersteen Model 2 loudspeaker.

Colin's picture

I can understand most manuals, however, they could be much better. I feel sorry for the not-so technically oriented audiophile. Then again, I learned much of what I know from manuals!

Klaus Armbruster's picture

The manual from Avalon that came with my Radian HC speakers wins hands down. It looks and feels great, and it goes far beyond telling me how to connect cables, etc. Really, it is a very good starting point for topics such as speaker placement, room interaction, etc.

Panagiotis (from Athens-Hellas's picture

I have never read a good manual although, I had well known products. For example amplifier: Jadis DA-30 (before: Power 1, cd: Audio analogue.

Mike K.'s picture

The Mackie 1402-VLZ PRO. Well written, clear, friendly and occasionally quite humourous. It explains some rather complicated mixing/recording setups with clarity. Includes wiring diagrams for maintenance and modification. I wish every manual could be as well written.

Rick Shapiro's picture

Could next week's question be: "What is the worst equipment manual you've ever read"? I'll have asurprising answer for you

Tony R.  Harrison Sr.'s picture

Its been my experience that most, unfortunately, are poorly written. However, MartinLogan is the exception and produces an outstanding equipment manual.

Mike Healey's picture

The manual for the Sumiko Standards (28" speaker stands) was very well written and printed on good heavy paper. I am a technical writer, and my wife taught English, so we are pretty critical of these things. Runner up: The manual to help me put together the StudioTech Ultimate Furniture U-48 cabinet.

Tyrone Slothrop's picture

Harvey (Gizmo) Rosenberg's "liner notes" for NYAL's Moscode 600 (or maybe it was the 300) amplifier were, maybe, not the most informative, but they were certainly the most entertaining. RIP, Giz.

John P.'s picture

I've always liked McIntosh manuals for their thoroughness and because they're printed on heavy paper stock that's meant to last a long time—sort of the same way Mac builds the components.

Jim's picture

Linn Products, good mix of technical and practical setup information.

T.O.Driskel's picture

I really like the companies that produce "White Papers," like BAT. My favorite technical pages with a little fluff!

T.S.'s picture

Any McIntosh manual would qualify as the best.

Gene Towne's picture

The owners' manuals that are packed with Avalon speakers. These manuals are some of the best-written, information-packed manuals I've ever seen on any consumer item, and particularly in audio. The scope of the manual and the proliferation of diagrams go well beyond what is necessary for correct setup of the speakers. Kudos to Neil Patel and his team for an absolutely superior job.

ACMcCoy's picture

Alesis ML-9600 Masterlink. Original & addendum. Clear and concise.

jaypp's picture

Bryston has great products and clear, concise manuals. Form (manuals) follows function (performance of products).

Ray Garrison's picture

Anything written by Nelson Pass.

Duane's picture

I got a Rega Planar 3 turntable. Their manual recommended NOT cleaning records and to leave acrylic dustcover ON during playback, since it will improve the sound. Those crazy Brits.

Ed Strnad's picture

Proton's manuals in the mid-'80s—but I'm biased; I wrote them.

arpetrop@otenet.gr's picture

Madrigal's for the Mark Levinson integrated amplifier No.383

Allan Stock's picture

The manual for the Wadia 830. It was well written, simple, and to the point for a not so simple but "to the point" player.

Jeff's picture

The Lexicon DC-1 manual was extremely informative and thorough.

JOHNK's picture


Mr Wilson loves Snell's picture

I could understand the manuals that came with the Snell speakers so they deserve some credit for at least writing clearly.

Mannie Smith's picture

Here they are! The manuals that came with my Avalon Monitors and my Pass Aleph 3. Instructive in general and very helpful in setting up in the actual room.

Al Marcy's picture

DEC PDP-8E. They assumed zero knowledge. Most Audio manuals assume zero sense. Not really the same thing :)

will's picture

pass labs aleph p - lots of technical detail