We Promote 2-Channel Stereo

  • Please do not group me in with the 'snobby audiophiles', but I like to think of myself as a purist when it comes to hi-fi listening. There is nothing wrong with surround-sound when done right, but the fact is that most music is still recorded and produced as two channel, as it has been for about 50 years. To reproduce the signal from the two channels faithfully, it is only natural to conclude that your source and amplification chain also follow that same signal path. To chop up that stereo signal and try to send it in five, seven or more different directions requires signal reprocessing that analyzes frequencies and sound levels and sends them to what channel it thinks they should go. I will not try to get technical on that discussion because I really do not know that much about it. I do know, however, that in my experience it sounds pretty crappy on your basic big-box store surround receviers that are available. I admit that I have not experienced a truly hi-end surround system. I do not know the statistics but I would say that the vast majority of audiophiles are in my camp on this. I am speaking strictly of serious home music listening, which I do a lot of.

    Where I am leading to is that if Crutchfield is serious about hi-fi music, they will go back to the old days and offer the gear that we knew and loved in the old days; 2-channel, SS muscle amps, tube amps and vinyl playback. Digital music can also sound very good, but that can be left to another discussion.

    Rick

  • CF offers vinyl playback (turntables).  I don't know that we need to go back to tube amps.  (There's a difference between wanting a rear-wheel-drive car and wanting a flathead straight-8).  Your other points are well taken.

    2002 Ford Focus JVC KD-A815 Sony CDX-GT410u Sony XT-100HD HD Tuner Stock speakers, no amp, no subs

  • Your points are also well taken. I'll just quote your "hi-fi" signature.....

    2002 Ford Focus
    Sony CDX-GT410u
    Sony XT-100HD HD Tuner
    Stock speakers, no amp, no subs

    .....and state that you don't have a clue to what I am talking about. Maybe you should limit your posts to the car audio forum.

    Rick

  • Rick,

    That was unnecessary.  Personal attacks will not be tolerated here.  Consider this your warning for posting a personal attack/flame.  Please refer to Crutchfield's  Code of Conduct for more information.

    Minus tube amps, which have narrow appeal these days, Crutchfield has everything you would need for a high-end, hi-fidelity, two channel "muscle" stereo system.  I encourage you to look around.

    There is nothing wrong with using a HT system for stereo listening.  You don't have to use the additional channels if you don't want to, and most people who are serious about their audio don't.  Additionally, many receivers offer a pure listening mode that disables the extra channels and extra processing within the receiver in addition to turning off circuitry that isn't needed so that it can focus on stereo audio.



    [edited by: JerSully at 11:14 AM (GMT -5) on Fri, Jan 30 2009]
  • I wanted to jump in here quickly with a couple of things:

     

    1.       We are constantly looking for new products to add to our mix, and I've forwarded your information up the chain. Good stuff. Thanks.

    2.       I wanted to point out the Peachtree Audio Decco piece that we are currently carrying (a Vacuum Tube Pre-Amp with a Solid State Power Amplifier):

    http://www.crutchfield.com/p_731DECBG/Peachtree-Audio-Decco-Black.html  

    3.       I think it is through discussion that we all learn more. While we will often disagree, it is important to further the discussion in as civil a manner as possible. That being said, while I don't own one - I do appreciate the warmth of the sound that you get from Tube amps.

  • JerSully:

    Rick,

    That was unnecessary.  Personal attacks will not be tolerated here.  Consider this your warning for posting a personal attack/flame.  Please refer to Crutchfield's  Code of Conduct for more information.

    Minus tube amps, which have narrow appeal these days, Crutchfield has everything you would need for a high-end, hi-fidelity, two channel "muscle" stereo system.  I encourage you to look around.

    There is nothing wrong with using a HT system for stereo listening.  You don't have to use the additional channels if you don't want to, and most people who are serious about their audio don't.  Additionally, many receivers offer a pure listening mode that disables the extra channels and extra processing within the receiver in addition to turning off circuitry that isn't needed so that it can focus on stereo audio.

    Warning duly noted. I apologize for my choice of words.

    Admittedly, I have not really checked out that many surround systems lately. I do not watch movies or TV. My wife does a lot of that and she could care less if the audio system is on or not. I guess they have improved over the last couple of years. I just know that the low-mid end Kenwood I have does a terrible job on 2-channel music. A music DVD, however, one that is produced in five discreet channels, does sound very good indeed for that system.

    Maybe I'll just leave surround out of the equation. The intent of my post is simply to state that there are still many of us "rebels" that refuse to try and keep up with the trends. Yeah, progress is good, but not always better. We love our 2-channel gear, and when done right it sounds absolutely fabulous.

    Rick

  • TigerHeli:
    I don't know that we need to go back to tube amps.  (There's a difference between wanting a rear-wheel-drive car and wanting a flathead straight-8)

    Tiger,

    I apologize for my choice of words; it was in reaction to your statement that (basically) tube amps went away with the dinasours. What I should have said is this:

    Tube amps never really went away, and the mid nineties experienced the beginning of a strong comeback for them. There is a devoted group of audiophiles and average users as well enjoying them more and more every day. I invite you to check out other on-line audio forums and hang out a while and you will see what I mean. There you can get connected with a local gear head and possibly meet up for a listening session. Hopefully you can listen to some tube gear. Even a modest low-budget tube amp matched with appropriate loudspeakers sounds wonderful most of the time. Happy listening!

    Rick

  • JerSully:

    Additionally, many receivers offer a pure listening mode that disables the extra channels and extra processing within the receiver in addition to turning off circuitry that isn't needed so that it can focus on stereo audio.

    That's what I am talking about. My favorite amp (dual-mono) in my listening room has one dual-triode input/driver tube, one direct-heated triode output tube, a power tranny, a handful of capacitors and resistors and the output tranny. Just the pure signal in, amplify it and out she goes. No volume control, no tone controls, only the on-off switch. We don't need no stinkin' processing or extra circuitry. It puts out a whopping 3.5 Watts/channel and sounds marvelous through my 1983 Klipsch Heresys (augmented with a Polk 10" active sub)! Heck yeah!

    Rick

  • Jeff Kitchen:

    We are constantly looking for new products to add to our mix, and I've forwarded your information up the chain. Good stuff. Thanks.

    Jeff - here's a couple more:

    Digital Audio Players/Servers - offer more choices than the Squeezebox and others that you carry

    Outboard hi-end DACs - to go with those Digital Audio Players/Servers

    Tripath Circuit amps - I have a loaner in my system right now and I am amazed at what these little amps can do! These are budget-friendly, too.

    Rick

  • Rick Rigler - Apology accepted - I really wasn't aware that there were still high-end tube amps being produced.  I equated it with vacuum tubes in CRT TV sets that went away years ago and weren't really missed once transistors could do the job much more reliably.

    BTW, if you are going to quote my sig-line as credentials, you would likely conclude that I shouldn't even be posting in the car audio forum (others have concluded that, btw), but I manage to do okay (at least with the connections side of things) on there!!!

    I learned a bit about home amps from this thread!!!!

    2002 Ford Focus JVC KD-A815 Sony CDX-GT410u Sony XT-100HD HD Tuner Stock speakers, no amp, no subs

  • TigerHeli:
    BTW, if you are going to quote my sig-line as credentials, you would likely conclude that I shouldn't even be posting in the car audio forum (others have concluded that, btw), but I manage to do okay (at least with the connections side of things) on there!!!
    TigerHeli's being modest.  He's the most helpful guy around here.
  • JerSully:
    TigerHeli's being modest.

    You obviously don't know me that well !!!! Devil

    He's the most helpful guy around here.

    Thanks again, but you can be helpful without really knowing what you are talking about.  (I do try to say when I don't know something, though). 

    For example, if someone asks what amp is good for these subs - I can see what the RMS of the subs are and the impedance, from that I know what the specs of the amp need to be.  A little following the forum and I know what amps are good around those specs.  Now ask me if the Alpine or the JL sub is a better choice when they both have similar specs and I couldn't begin to tell you!!!!

    2002 Ford Focus JVC KD-A815 Sony CDX-GT410u Sony XT-100HD HD Tuner Stock speakers, no amp, no subs

  • TigerHeli:
    I equated it with vacuum tubes in CRT TV sets that went away years ago and weren't really missed once transistors could do the job much more reliably.

    You bring up a good point; tubes do require user intervention and periodic maintenance. Transistors are definitely more relaible. Equal or better sonically is debatable, and has started countless flame wars in many forums and other discussions. I will not go there.

    You also have to replace tubes periodically which adds to the ultimate price of the gear. To me it is worth it, and messing with the gear is fun; five of the six tubed components that I have I also built, albeit from a kit. I tinker some with loudspeakers, too, and I currently have a line array project under way. Audio is my primary hobby.

    I read your intro post. Your car audio beginning and experiences are much like mine. I had one of the first Pioneer component units that had the pre (control amp) connected to the power amp with an umbilical. That was in mid-seventies. I have always liked Pioneer mobile equipment and that is what I have to this day. I will post over in the car audio section and list my gear. I also have some questions about upgrades for a new truck I am planning to get.

    Rick