-------------------   Recommended components  ------------------- 

I think it is right to highlight those commercial devices that regardless of the historical period have been highlighted in my ear for their musical gifts detaching from the ordinary also to give an indication to those who approach for the first time to high fidelity and has no reference of course. This selection is made from a large number of tested components. On some of these, instrumental measurements of frequency response on real load have been made, see technical tests



Amplifiers, cd player and speakers Grundig 

Not a specific model but many are the most noteworthy appliances in the Grundig house in the years 74-86. The only brand on which we have this "anomaly" caused, in large part, by the total CCI development. Valid as long as they have not been tampered with. The excellent models are in this case so many that they deserve a dedicated page see Grundig story
This site, online since 1999, was the first in the world to talk about the qualities of these products, attracting interests (and teasing) of various kinds. Now grundig enthusiasts proliferate even if sometimes this happens with the usual care and methodology of which the enthusiast hifi is average equipped especially when he tries products of low cost ... or very low.
On italian magazine Audio Review n. 383 you can find my article:
"Vintage: il fenomeno Grundig" dedicated to the brand.
On rubric "Senza scadenza" of Audio Review (italian magazine) you find the articles of:
-SL1000: AR n.389
-Box850a-1500a: AR n.391
-Box2500a: AR n.393
 
 

Telefunken TL800 second series 

A loudspeaker that has the age of the project even forty years having been published in the catalog a very first version (probably not commercialized and quite different as crossover frequencies from the next) already in 1972!
In fact, as far as I have seen, two versions have been marketed: the first, in the catalog from the 73, had a removable wooden front frame and the dome midrange had an acoustic attenuator with 6 spokes while the second, in the catalog only from 75-76, it was also marketed black with the front sponge for speakers in place of the wooden frame and had the only difference in design compared to the previous series the presence of an attenuator on the midrange 10 races instead of 6.
This greater attenuation of the mid removes a color that made the first series look more like a AR10π than a German speaker with a neutral timbre.
This last version on condition, essential, to be used with the front sponge (like Monacor MDM-8602) and to be placed directly on the floor, is one of the very few speakers with convincing sound and rigor timbre.
The result is much worse if heard with the front wooden frame instead of the sponge. The TL700 and TL600, although not awkward, do not have the relevant characteristics of this model.
The only drawback is the height of the image: with the speaker on the ground, the tweeter is found (being mounted in the center of the speaker) really close to the floor. However, regardless of this aspect, favoring the sound this is one of the best speakers in circulation, a speaker that respects the music and the timbre of the instruments .... light years from today's esoteric designs made just to amaze but without any musical validity. Notwithstanding the use without backward inclination and close to the back wall, it is advisable to use it in rooms in which the wall behind the listening point is at a distance greater than 1.7m to avoid excessive reinforcements in the low range. Basically a classic "caso C" installation in large rooms. You can find my article on Audio Review n.388.

To get the best from the TL800 see also here

 

 

Boston A200

The only "room speakers" to be part of this selection. A speaker system that goes against the back wall and suspended on felt pads after removing the support base and replaced with a sponge (Monacor MDM-8602) the original front frame. A speaker that gives many satisfactions if listened to in a "caso C" position and at a distance of more than 4m from the listening point with the loudspeakers placed rather close to each other. A lot of information about it can be found on my article on italian magazine Audio Review n.387

 


Rogers LS3/5a 15 ohm series first "gold badge" 

Everyone knows it but few know that the first 15 ohm series has a totally different crossover from the following ones, because initially the attenuation of the tweeter was obtained with a transformer, while on the following the attenuation was resistive with the consequent decrease of the factor of damping and linearity. A loudspeaker without particular placement problems, which allows a balanced listening with the obvious limit of the power seal that prevents orchestral volumes. One of the very few two-way pedestal in closed box that sounds thanks to the particular desired exaltation of a part of the bass that compensates for the partial cancellation at those frequencies due to the distance from the floor. The original BBC project was licensed to many manufacturers (Rogers, Spendor, Goodmans, Audiomaster, Chartwell, RAM, etc) and the vote I refer to is related to the first versions of LS3 / 5a Rogers that had the brass mark on the canvas and the back label smaller than the following ones. Very important is put the boxes on four felt pads. I had several samples of 15ohm following this series and all were decidedly worse in terms of openness and transparency. My article is on Audio Review  n.390.

 


Dahlquist DQ10 second series 

Of the three series produced, I refer to the not-specular version with crossover using polyester condensers (yellow colored marked Dahlquist). The antecedent version with electrolytic capacitors sounds more closed as well as less fresh and musical are the successive (mirrored) "improved". If you are looking for a full-range case with floor installation, a good solution is a pair of DQ10s. The installation should preferably be done on the three wooden feet supplied and is very sensitive to the distance of the rear wall (due to the mid-low philips not in the case). Excellent depth of field and amplitude of the sound stage when it is placed and amplified in an appropriate manner. My article on Audio Review n.385.

 

 

IMF Super compact II 
The only "open" speaker of this selection, in reality it is an aperiodic system with labyrinth that behaves to the measures in a very similar way to a closed box. Remarkable spontaneity and freshness of which it is capable if properly placed. Only drawback: find two pairs to make a non-specular one. Article on AR n. 386
 

 

Klipsch Heresy first series 
You immediately recognize it from the other two series produced as the only one with speakers (woofer in primis) mounted from the inside. This choice by presenting a reflective edge near the suspension of the woofer determines in fact a dispersion but above all a frequency response in the middle range (the part reproduced by the woofer) rather different from that obtainable from external mounting. By far the best Klipsch that my ear has listened to (also coincidentally in air suspension) with transparency and liquidity on the medium-high from before the class, requires an installation on the floor and close to the back wall if you want it to come out the bass / medium-bass part otherwise rather parche. In these conditions and with a full CCI behind them the Heresy I are great music machines. Two flaws in my opinion the most obvious: the medium-low a little string very likely caused by the case left empty design (ie without internal absorption) and the directivity of the trumpets in a vertical sense that in front of a floor installation would lead to a ' backward tilt of the case. This inclination is not painless, however, and in fact the best solution as a balance of timbre is without inclination, losing something on the highs.
A speaker suitable for medium / small rooms that, like all transparent speakers, goes to wedding with a full CCI as ruthlessly highlights the hardness of an upstream electronics in which the "Problem" is still present in a relevant way. The difference present with respect to the subsequent series is significant. Also this speaker is one of the "rose of the ten" examined into rubric "Senza scadenza" on Audio Review n.392

 


IMF ALS 40 II
 

A speaker system from the loading certainly very special that has valid potential if some variants are put in place. I recommend the "II" and "IIa" versions, suitable for "case C" installations. I have spoken extensively on AR n.394 in the last episode of the rubric "Senza scadenza".

 

 

Leak tl 12 point one 
One of best tube amp. Great depth of field and airy although compared to an full CCI amp we realize that there is still some music more! Surely, however, a final recommended to fans of the "glass cruets" even if the sound changes a lot from specimen to specimen (I heard a version with capacitor current work much better than the original capacitors with paper and oil, while another exemplary always modernized worked much worse): board is always to listen carefully and without prejudice before a choice. The Leak is one of the few classics that equipment because of their original installation included in massive furniture vintage have an advantage over other amplifiers: DO NOT HAVE the cover below! This factor is reflected in a partial (as random ) solution to CCI problems.


McIntosh MC30 

A classic that has made the name McIntosh, fluidity and pleasure typical of the best tube (which randomly as they are manufactured are

partially CCI ...)

 
Class' audio DR3b / DR3 VHC 

Liquidity of the medium-high range similar to devices CCI, without have the same depth of field and the same ability to "separate" the instruments. Remains one of the few solid state power amp, among those "esoteric" I tried (link
tested components ) which left me with a pleasant memory.
 


Jadis JA80 

Among the Jadis what I liked most (I listened in controlled conditions also JA30 and JA200), with good body and contrast, among the best today's tube amp if you use it with normal cables .... condition that applies for all other devices listed here. For normal cables mean those recommended in the section in the
unconfortable truths

 


Quad II + QUAD 22
 
I got them and appreciated only if combined together, the pre was too open while the power amp was a bit close...together the result was enjoyable music but I have using only the phono (when I had them still had not born the cd player so can not tell you how it goes the line input ...) .


Pioneer M22 

A Class A power amp with massive doses of negative feedback that should do much to think at the proponents of the "zero feedback" : listening of amps like this should serve like demonstration of groundlessness of "zero feedback" advantages...


Radford ZD22 & ZD50 

A pairing of the most musical in which there were partial ( perhaps known ?) points for the development perspective CCI.

Mr. Radford had good ears ....

 
Quicksilver 8417 

Better of the next version with KT88. A tube amp fluid and enjoyable, one of the best expressions of the tube today that I've heard.


Pre DNM  

A little box insignificant transistor, which in its mains operation left me a good impression: a little compressed image compared to  XV7500 Grundig but without the typical colors of almost all tube preamp that I have gotten. Definitely recommended even if difficult to find.
 

Snell type A first and second series 

Ambitious (and cumbersome) project , which certainly has its appeal aesthetics. The biggest problem is a little lack in the midbass (a cross between woofer and midrange) that makes the voices and some instruments a little flattened. If you find a suitable location to compensate this problem the type A shows a sound impressive though never very airy. A good project, especially the first type. I would not recommend the 3rd series with rear tweeter..
 

Gale GS401  

Insert rightly this old project Gale that, even with significant inconvenience of foam (4 woofer + 2 midrange needs of foam suspension) is definitely along with the DM6 first series and Rogers LS3/5a one of the best English school loudspeakers (in closed box) of ever. Better if you listen to in the vertical (on one of the "caps" chrome-plated metal) and raised from the ground about 40-45cm.
 

B & W DM6 first series  

Or for those who have a good memory, the version that had the level control on the woofer, midrange all in kevlar (including the central dome) and the front panel in wood (as opposed to the later series that was made of plastic). In my opinion the best B & W ever produced, a speaker with great sweetness and depth of field. Only precaution to be taken (in addition to leave the controls and mr tw in flat position): leave inserted the midrange-tweeter grids and removed the woofer grilles, the difference in this model and remarkable. In my environment I have obtained the best balance with reducing the woofer level. Try to listen to a comparison of the "technological" B & W today if you want to know of how much is lost in terms of harmonic "moving forward" in the years.


Quad ESL 63 first series 

The only dipole in this list. I prefer this to the old ESL if amplified and if installed properly. It's need a rear absorbent (a tent in heavy velvet can go very well ). Remain the limits of coherence on the low and midbass, typical of all the dipoles . The loudspeaker must me pointed toward the listening point (given the accentuated directivity on high frequency). The first series production up to serial 11,600 had panels with plastic black to contrast with the subsequent support ivory ... less efficient the first but with a much better definition. unfortunately are often found with the defective panels and are available as spares only the latest type of panels.
 


Radford Monitor 180 

A very rare system that I have only recently listen with good installation. A great project with a low abundant and widespread, it is advisable to use a listening point well away from the wall behind you. The best talent in my opinion, the consistency combined with a marked absence of colouration, add the issue to 180 ° allow you to return a true sensation (who has in mind the Allison One here we are on another planet ... ) of a very wide sound stage often and enjoyable. Defects: an opening not excellent in high frequency, comparable approximately (I value in memory) to that of Snell type A (but on the midbass the Radford is better) and a not excellent definition because of the two tweeters and two midrange that as mounted not "visible" but generate some interference anyway. A loudspeaker system who fully deserves to be tested carefully.
 


Krell ksa 50 first series 

In my opinion the best Krell ever built , but also a power amp that can provide a good dynamic with an already good harmonic content. Remains a certain crudeness to return a mid-high range however not unpleasant.

 

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