Hi there. I’m starting this blog as a way for me to chart what has wobbled between a hobby and an obsession for over a year now – vintage stereos and speakers. Not long after moving into our first proper house, my wife and I got the nesting bug. That sent her off in search of appropriate furniture, drapes, and kitchen essentials. And I started looking for the loudest, coolest, stereo rig I could find – years of apartment life and laptop speakers had completely warped my sense of what good music sounded like. It was time to upgrade.

After reading somewhere that vintage stereo equipment offered much more bang for the buck, I stopped by the local thrift to see what I could pick up. An hour later I walked out with an immaculate Realistic STA-790 receiver, and three speakers – two Sony SS-580 3-ways from the 1960s and one Pioneer CS-99A. I ran home and set it all up, pushing my Sharper Image minisystem out of the way.

I switched on the receiver and stood back. The dials lit up in yellow-green, and when I hit play the red LED VU meters started to jump. I was in 70s sci-fi heaven.

The Sonys backed up with half a CS-99A pair was far from ideal but the sound carried through the entire house in a way my tinny new system was absolutely incapable of recreating. I sat back and heard my music again for the first time. Wow.

Now I understood what my Dad had been after when he bought all if hi-fi gear in the early 1970s at a South Korean PX – A Pioneer SX-9000 receiver, Garrard zero-zero turntable, TEAC reel to reel, and three pair of speakers – CS-99As, CS-6As, and another bookshelf set that blew up before he left for the States.

The next day I started scouring Craigslist for more gear.


~ by silverfacestereo on September 3, 2012.

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