In spirit of the "70's speaker vs. now" thread...

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Said recent thread:

Speaker quality 70's vs. now

I love discussions such as those, albeit as an admittedly novice home audio nerd. Here's a similar scenario: who here has come across a good home speaker score, regardless of POS or price. Something that really made you grin due to the thrill of the deal.

For example: about a year ago I picked up a set of Polk RT25i bookshelf speakers while building a shop stereo. $35 on Marketplace, in mint condition. Before I buy anything audio related, I do as much research as I can to make sure I'm not wasting my time. Research showed that these particular speakers were one of the best of the line: better tweeters, better crossovers, real wood veneer. Later models skimped in all these areas. I happily drove the 20 minutes to snag those once I learned the deets.

Same goes for my main HT system: 4-5 years ago I picked up a 5 speaker Paradigm surround setup for $750. It consists of 2 Studio 60 V2's WITH the optional Rosenut veneer, a Studio CC V2 center, and 2 Studio ADP V2's with matching stands. That setup retailed in the $4-5k range when new, and everything was in MINT condition. Great score.

One more: just a few months ago I picked up a Technics SA-R177 receiver and 2 Boston VR1 tower speakers for $150. These are original VR1's, with dual 6.5" woofers and a 1" tweeter. Those exact speakers can be found on eBay right now with an asking price of $450: Boston VR1 Speakers

Who else has a good HT score story?
 

BlueOvalFitter

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Before I enlisted in the Army (1984) I bought a used Kenwood KA-400 amp, Onkyo TX-2500 receiver, and an early made set of Series VI BOSE 901 speakers (with EQ). I think I paid $1200 for the whole setup.
I had the chance to buy some vintage Savard home speakers (12" 3 way) last year for $300.
 
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I buy up piles of vintage (10-20+ years old, not ancient stuff) audio/video equipment. I have a lot of receivers, speakers, DVD and CD players, etc. I think probably the late 90s and early 2000s was a great period for technology of this sort and you can get this stuff for peanuts today, basically about 1/10th of the original price with probably 99% life remaining and just as useful today as when new. I don't need much of the current bluetooth nonsense all the kids rave about.

As for speakers, ancient stuff will need to be fixed b/c the rubber wears out. I got a refurbished bookshelf Boston Acoustics set for like $40 a year ago. It's connected to a Onkyo receiver I got recently for less than $50, playing a DVD I got for probably 50 cents on a $5 Panasonic DVD player, on a $100 flat screen TV. Every bit as good today as it was when new, decade(s) ago, but a fraction of the cost.

I bet I have $30,000 of "when new" electronics, most purchased for probably 1/10th or less of original retail. TVs, speakers, receivers, media players, etc. which, again, all work and provide just as much entertainment today as when new for pennies on the dollar.
 
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Nice score on the Paradigms.

I'm not particularly good at catching great deals. The stuff for sale around me is usually junk or overpriced.

I got some new stuff last year... Energy CB-5 for $70, DCM TP160 for $75, and JBL Arena 130 for $120. Decent speakers, but not outstanding by any means. Most of it is sitting in storage right now, along with a nice pair of Jamo C607 towers.
 

14Accent

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I buy up piles of vintage (10-20+ years old, not ancient stuff) audio/video equipment. I have a lot of receivers, speakers, DVD and CD players, etc. I think probably the late 90s and early 2000s was a great period for technology of this sort and you can get this stuff for peanuts today, basically about 1/10th of the original price with probably 99% life remaining and just as useful today as when new. I don't need much of the current bluetooth nonsense all the kids rave about.

As for speakers, ancient stuff will need to be fixed b/c the rubber wears out. I got a refurbished bookshelf Boston Acoustics set for like $40 a year ago. It's connected to a Onkyo receiver I got recently for less than $50, playing a DVD I got for probably 50 cents on a $5 Panasonic DVD player, on a $100 flat screen TV. Every bit as good today as it was when new, decade(s) ago, but a fraction of the cost.

I bet I have $30,000 of "when new" electronics, most purchased for probably 1/10th or less of original retail. TVs, speakers, receivers, media players, etc. which, again, all work and provide just as much entertainment today as when new for pennies on the dollar.

This is exactly the kind of response I was looking for! I'm in the same boat, the "retail" value of all my gear vs. purchase price is darn near a 10:1 ratio. Did I buy it because of the potential profit? Of course not. It's just interesting economics, pure and simple.
 
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Yup, you can get a 10 year old flat screen for 1/20th the cost of new. I just bought a 10 year old lightly used 42" plasma Panasonic for $45 over the weekend. I watched two movies on it (actually, I watched Reservoir dogs twice, lol), and it's perfect. It was probably $1000 when new; in fact I know it was b/c in 2009 I foolishly bought a similar model new for $1000. Now, $45.... plugged it into a set of nearly free 100watt each Peavy floor speakers. Played a DVD that cost about $1, on a $5 DVD player. Sound powered by a F.R.E.E. Denon receiver (b/c it's not got fancy USB and bluetooth nonsense). FREE. Entire setup in that room, maybe 50 bucks. EXCELLENT quality.

Again, I've got boxes of this stuff I accumulate. I recognize massive value for pennies on the dollar so I buy them, box them, and put them aside for later. Speakers, receivers, DVD and CD players, wires, VCRs, tape players, you name it. Stuff folks literally or practically give away, that was once many hundreds of dollars...

Meanwhile, walk into any electronics store. Folks are lined up handing over $3000 for the latest TV or streaming nonsense. I love it. In 10 years, I'll take it off their hands for $100 when they need something new. LOL.
 

14Accent

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Yup, you can get a 10 year old flat screen for 1/20th the cost of new. I just bought a 10 year old lightly used 42" plasma Panasonic for $45 over the weekend. I watched two movies on it (actually, I watched Reservoir dogs twice, lol), and it's perfect. It was probably $1000 when new; in fact I know it was b/c in 2009 I foolishly bought a similar model new for $1000. Now, $45.... plugged it into a set of nearly free 100watt each Peavy floor speakers. Played a DVD that cost about $1, on a $5 DVD player. Sound powered by a F.R.E.E. Denon receiver (b/c it's not got fancy USB and bluetooth nonsense). FREE. Entire setup in that room, maybe 50 bucks. EXCELLENT quality.

Again, I've got boxes of this stuff I accumulate. I recognize massive value for pennies on the dollar so I buy them, box them, and put them aside for later. Speakers, receivers, DVD and CD players, wires, VCRs, tape players, you name it. Stuff folks literally or practically give away, that was once many hundreds of dollars...

Meanwhile, walk into any electronics store. Folks are lined up handing over $3000 for the latest TV or streaming nonsense. I love it. In 10 years, I'll take it off their hands for $100 when they need something new. LOL.

This is perfect. I myself just purchased a 58" Insignia LED 4k TV for $349 from BB. Sure, it's bargain basement, however it performs equally as well as my "daily driver" 2014 Vizio 60" LCD that I paid over $1,400 for at the time.
 
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Still rockin' the first gen Klipsch reference premier series I got open box for under $900 (for all 5 speakers) and probably will for a looong time, they're just too dang good for what I paid for them. Went to a fellow audio nerds house to a/b compare the RP 160M against multiple other speakers costing 5-10x as much and they performed as good or better, even beating some of them. They will also get loud as heck without any distortion using a relatively low powered AVR (Denon AVR x1300w).
 
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Los Gatos, CA
I used to be stereo crazy; it is soooo easy to spiral up in price with diminishing returns in quality.
I settled on Monitor Audio speakers and could not be more pleased.
Of course, quality sound ALWAYS starts with a quality source.
Build a balanced system or you will never get the benefit of a quality set of speakers.
 
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NJ
I can't compare to the 70s, can't go back that far but was thinking about this topic last night. In my home gym I have two stereos. One is my large Polk speakers with a Pioneer receiver that are really great. The other is a pair of floor standing smaller JVC speakers that my stepson had stored in my basement. Nothing special at the time they were sold. They are hooked to a mini amp with a Bluetooth connection to our Peloton bike. So, mediocre speakers, cheap amp, Bluetooth compressed source. Sounds amazing for a budget set up.
 
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Iowa
The audio bug bit me in the mid 70's after my brother, who was in the service, sent some equipment home from the Phillipines. An Acoustic Research turntable, AR speakers, Sony reel to reel and a receiver. I bought some Advent loudspeakers in the late 70's and downsized to Polk bookshelves after we started having kids. I can remember poring over audio equipment specs and reviews in Stereo Review and Audio. I've always been a bang for the buck guy so there's nothing exotic here, just some good memories.
 
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Aug 12, 2021
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Dripping Springs, TX
I’m running a 2003 or so Onkyo receiver with a set of Omega speakers (my dad got new) in 1978. They have 12” woofers. The sound quality is great in my opinion, but I’m not an expert. I’ve been using the speakers since 1997, when got a new Kenwood (that lasted until 2003). Original stereo that came with the speakers was a Fisher with built-in cassette and BSR turntable attached.
 

OVERKILL

$100 Site Donor 2021
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Messages
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Ontario, Canada
My main system (living room) is presently a bit of a piece-together:
Samsung 65" 3D Smart-TV
Denon AVRX4200W for digital sources (runs as a pre, only powers the centre channel)
PS Audio 5.6 pre-amp for analog (has a beautiful phono stage)
Aurex SR-Q200 direct drive turntable
Bryston 4B primary power amp
Speakercraft SC2-100 secondary power amp (sub)
Paradigm Monitor 11 v7 mains
Klipsch centre channel
McIntosh sub cabinet w/Bravox driver


My secondary system (bedroom) is presently:
Samsung 55" 4K Smart-TV
Yamaha RX-A730 (kijiji score! for $150.00)
B&W Matrix 802 monitors

I also have a beautiful set of Maracus components (amp/pre-amp) from Germany that I'm going to keep stored until the kids have moved out (they are glass topped, don't want to damage them).
 
Joined
Jan 9, 2010
Messages
12,162
Location
Los Gatos, CA
My main system (living room) is presently a bit of a piece-together:
Samsung 65" 3D Smart-TV
Denon AVRX4200W for digital sources (runs as a pre, only powers the centre channel)
PS Audio 5.6 pre-amp for analog (has a beautiful phono stage)
Aurex SR-Q200 direct drive turntable
Bryston 4B primary power amp
Speakercraft SC2-100 secondary power amp (sub)
Paradigm Monitor 11 v7 mains
Klipsch centre channel
McIntosh sub cabinet w/Bravox driver


My secondary system (bedroom) is presently:
Samsung 55" 4K Smart-TV
Yamaha RX-A730 (kijiji score! for $150.00)
B&W Matrix 802 monitors

I also have a beautiful set of Maracus components (amp/pre-amp) from Germany that I'm going to keep stored until the kids have moved out (they are glass topped, don't want to damage them).
Somebody is paying you too much money...
 
Joined
Jul 19, 2020
Messages
1,767
I used to be stereo crazy; it is soooo easy to spiral up in price with diminishing returns in quality.
I settled on Monitor Audio speakers and could not be more pleased.
Of course, quality sound ALWAYS starts with a quality source.
Build a balanced system or you will never get the benefit of a quality set of speakers.
this looks like it has potential
42275061-BBAD-4BC4-BDB2-59A247AE19C7.jpeg
 
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Jul 14, 2020
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VA
Bought a lot of equipment while in the USAF in the late 1980's. Still running an Adcom GFA-555 power amp an Adcom pre-amp and an older Yamaha CD player. For speakers I have some Infinity Studio Monitor 150's. Need to rebuild the rubber on the woofers but that Adcom amp will really drive those 15" woofers.
 
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