Royal weddings, economic
recessions and surging energy prices – it's the early eighties all over
again! But it's in straightened financial times such as these that people
often show their natural resourcefulness, and why shouldn't that include
With this in mind, we thought it would be a good idea to
issue a challenge to three Hi-Fi World
scribes to build fine sounding ‘budget audiophile' systems using a
secondhand source component to save money and/or improve the sound. The
challenge went out to Adam Smith and Paul Rigby, and then yours truly
Actually, It was fun. There's a curious ‘iron curtain'
amongst audiophiles; many would never countenance buying secondhand whereas
others have nothing else but. Personally, I've long since run a mixture of
old and new in my system (a Marantz TT-1000 turntable from 1980, a Musical
Fidelity AMS35i from 2010, and a 1986 vintage pair of Yamaha NS1000M
loudspeakers are my current staple), so I know that clever planning and
matching can get a great sound that you couldn't necessarily
have by buying all old or all new. See p17 for the results; I think you'll
agree that we came up with some weird and wonderful stuff.
Elsewhere in this issue, we have some great new kit that
whilst expensive, also represents real value for money. For example, Leema's
brand new Antilla IIS Eco [p46] is up with CD players at twice its £3,000
price tag, and gives a wonderfully organic sound from silver disc that you
simply don't expect from this format. German Physiks' Limited 11 [p52] offer
most of the heroic performance of speakers twice as expensive up their model
range, with an epic, cathedral-like sound from their omnidirectional drivers
for £7,800. Back to the real world and Mission's MX-2 mini monitors work
brilliantly considering their £200 price tag [see p64] and Ortofon's Vivo
Blue (£275) is one of the best entry level moving coil cartridges we've
heard in a long time [p107].
As ever then, this new issue is packed with great kit, old
and new, across the generations. Enjoy!
David Price, editor
here to subscribe to Hi-Fi World