Burn out - and finding the joy in Quad again

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ArmyOfQuad

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I've just about had it up to here with this. All I want is to enjoy some music.....and instead, all I get are problems after problems after problems.

I'm putting a new rule in place with my home audio - NO MORE VINTAGE EQUIPMENT!!!!

I've had it up to here with the nightmare that is breaking down crap that was built with crappy components that break down after a few decades. It's always a game of chase down the problem. And, I'm no electronics expert. I can solder a thing or 2, I can trace signal, but I am not good at working on electronic components, I'm not about to get better at it anytime soon, and it brings me no joy to do. Nothing would make me happier to have an option to throw money at it, and make it better.....but no one works on this crap anymore. I have an ever growing pile of broken down crap waiting for someone to be able to service.....but no one will help me. I give - and I get nothing.

I had been running modern and vintage systems side by side for a while now. Due to Denon (and probably most other current manufacturers) deciding to make their multi-channel analog inputs not be EQ-able. I never got the logic of that - you spend all this money on a receiver, for all it's features. It comes with a microphone to fine tune the EQ setups to your room (which, is also garbage - even the channel balancing is ALWAYS off with that setup, I always end up having to go to manual and fine tune it). And then, for all those features you pay for - they have this input that completely bypasses all of it! Ridiculous! I'm sure some people scoff at the thought of subjecting their pure signals to some crappy EQ processing....but fine tuning the audio is a must for me. Especially when dealing with 8-tracks. They're unlistenable without being able to tweak things a bit.

Well, my Marantz 4060 was never a good amplifier. I think it was the cheapest option Marantz offered as far as quad amps. But, it was what I had. As the years go by, the crackles when adjusting the volume knob grew and grew. And then the front right channel started getting funny - dropping out frequently and shit like that. I finally drop a bunch of money on brand new turntables to get rid of that vintage nightmare, and go to listen to some CD-4 records.....but no, the quad amp won't cooperate. Only option at this point is the flat lifeless no EQ multi input on the Denon receiver.

And of course there's the Marantz 4400 in the basement that turns on but outputs no sound. Sure, it's the dream amp.....but how can I get that going again? Only option I could really find was sound-smith - but packing it up to ship would be a nightmare. Not to mention the expense. Ugh....just can't.....

So, ok....maybe a pair of external equalizers could get the job done?

But how to get this all connected.

So I drop a bunch of money on eBay again, for the thing that's going to fix this all and bring it together.....which NEVER DOES!!!!!

I get 2 external stereo equalizers, and a Russound QT-1, so I can connect the surround master to the external decoder hookups, take a line out of the receiver to the input, connect the CD-4 demodulator, 8-track deck, and Equalizers as 3 of the devices, so I can easily route sound from the reciever to the SQ decoder. And then I can route my source to the copy bus, route that to the equalizer, and monitor the out of the equalizer - no patch cords required.

Of course, the stupid vintage Russound QT-1 won't route anything at all!!!!! Stupid piece of garbage....how do you build a stupid switch box to break down? Not sure how they pulled that one off, but they did.

The nightmare never ends. Quad brings me nothing but misery, I'm not sure why I continue with this disaster of a hobby.

I suppose it's time to fire up some GTA V and shoot at things.
 

Imbobman

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I've just about had it up to here with this. All I want is to enjoy some music.....and instead, all I get are problems after problems after problems.

I'm putting a new rule in place with my home audio - NO MORE VINTAGE EQUIPMENT!!!!

I've had it up to here with the nightmare that is breaking down crap that was built with crappy components that break down after a few decades. It's always a game of chase down the problem. And, I'm no electronics expert. I can solder a thing or 2, I can trace signal, but I am not good at working on electronic components, I'm not about to get better at it anytime soon, and it brings me no joy to do. Nothing would make me happier to have an option to throw money at it, and make it better.....but no one works on this crap anymore. I have an ever growing pile of broken down crap waiting for someone to be able to service.....but no one will help me. I give - and I get nothing.

I had been running modern and vintage systems side by side for a while now. Due to Denon (and probably most other current manufacturers) deciding to make their multi-channel analog inputs not be EQ-able. I never got the logic of that - you spend all this money on a receiver, for all it's features. It comes with a microphone to fine tune the EQ setups to your room (which, is also garbage - even the channel balancing is ALWAYS off with that setup, I always end up having to go to manual and fine tune it). And then, for all those features you pay for - they have this input that completely bypasses all of it! Ridiculous! I'm sure some people scoff at the thought of subjecting their pure signals to some crappy EQ processing....but fine tuning the audio is a must for me. Especially when dealing with 8-tracks. They're unlistenable without being able to tweak things a bit.

Well, my Marantz 4060 was never a good amplifier. I think it was the cheapest option Marantz offered as far as quad amps. But, it was what I had. As the years go by, the crackles when adjusting the volume knob grew and grew. And then the front right channel started getting funny - dropping out frequently and shit like that. I finally drop a bunch of money on brand new turntables to get rid of that vintage nightmare, and go to listen to some CD-4 records.....but no, the quad amp won't cooperate. Only option at this point is the flat lifeless no EQ multi input on the Denon receiver.

And of course there's the Marantz 4400 in the basement that turns on but outputs no sound. Sure, it's the dream amp.....but how can I get that going again? Only option I could really find was sound-smith - but packing it up to ship would be a nightmare. Not to mention the expense. Ugh....just can't.....

So, ok....maybe a pair of external equalizers could get the job done?

But how to get this all connected.

So I drop a bunch of money on eBay again, for the thing that's going to fix this all and bring it together.....which NEVER DOES!!!!!

I get 2 external stereo equalizers, and a Russound QT-1, so I can connect the surround master to the external decoder hookups, take a line out of the receiver to the input, connect the CD-4 demodulator, 8-track deck, and Equalizers as 3 of the devices, so I can easily route sound from the reciever to the SQ decoder. And then I can route my source to the copy bus, route that to the equalizer, and monitor the out of the equalizer - no patch cords required.

Of course, the stupid vintage Russound QT-1 won't route anything at all!!!!! Stupid piece of garbage....how do you build a stupid switch box to break down? Not sure how they pulled that one off, but they did.

The nightmare never ends. Quad brings me nothing but misery, I'm not sure why I continue with this disaster of a hobby.

I suppose it's time to fire up some GTA V and shoot at things.
Is that what's troubling you Bunkie🥴....?
Ya, I know the feeling!
Vintage equipment & Murphy's Law! Some say Murphy was an optimist..
Don't let it drive you nuts my friend.
The 2nd law of thermodynamics... everything is in a state of decline, more or less....
On a more serious note, I have some & can relate to what you are saying.
Hafler DH-500 amp, AR-9 speakers, Sony PS-X800 TT, Nakamichi cr-7a & Dragon cassette decks. They've all had to be rebuilt/ re-coned or re-capped. There's no getting around it.
Actually, the build quality of all of them is far better than most equipment nowadays.... & Yes it is difficult to find skilled people to do it locally...
Unfortunately, that's just the way it is.
 
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edisonbaggins

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I've never dared try vintage equipment, sort of for these reasons.
I don't ever feel the need to mess with EQ, beyond initial auto setup.
OPPO and TT running in to my SMv3 has me listening to lots of matrix Quad and stereo upmixing. Just no discrete stuff. For that it's optical discs or downloads.
 

LuvMyQuad

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Not sure what to say here.

Rant on if you need to. We can take it.

The only piece of vintage equipment I have is an Oracle TT and a Black Widow Arm. I never use it anymore, but it looks cool. So I cant really share your angst so much.

The issue with the Denon AVR is common because the MCH analog in is supposed to be a Pure direct kind of thing that was made for DVDA and SACD playback from disk players that had matching MCH analog connections.

Have you ever looked into something like this?
DDRC-88A

Port your analog front end into it, digitize it, use the Dirac filters in it to your hearts content, save the profiles you like.... then onto a power amp of your choice.

And here is an inexpensive switch box
27.91US $ 30% OFF|8 Ports 2 output Composite 3 RCA Video Audio AV Switch Switcher splitter Box Selector 8in 2out 8x2 for HDTV LCD DVD|av switch|3 rcarca video - AliExpress

So cheap you can stockpile a few.
 

timothyemerson

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Are you able to convert whatever analogue quad tunes you have to digital? Then you can edit as you need to with whatever software you dig. Then all your tunes will be playable as files on drives (and back-up drives, + back-up drives for the back-up drives). Then you could retire the old gear to somewhere else in your house.
 

ArmyOfQuad

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I find listening to the original sources tend to bring me more joy than the conversions. I'm sure many of you will find that ironic. Or maybe that makes me moronic. I'm beyond burnt out when it comes to my spare time hobbies, and am now looking for the joy again.

For now, I have an A/B switch solution, since the EQs I bought have inputs for line and tape. I suppose I can dig up a pair of switchboxes to bring that up to 3. And throw the russound on the pile of stuff "to totally be repaired someday" that will all get tossed in a landfill when I'm gone.
 

kfbkfb

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I'm thinking ~20 years maximum age for me to continue to use a piece of audio/video equip., after that, time to upgrade (modern amplifiers are low distortion, low noise and high power, IMHO, at least as good as and probably better than vintage amplifiers).

I favor Pioneer because they carried the burden of the LaserDisc system alone for many years, and I want to reward them when possible.

My oldest A/V item is my SH-400 CD-4 demod, most of my other stuff is ~12 years old (digital tv, DVD recorders, VCRs, HD radio).

I guess the only ongoing problem (for me) is finding a new phono cartridge that is suitable for CD-4.


Kirk Bayne
 

edisonbaggins

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Btw... I think it is a very good idea to identify if and when you're not enjoying any hobby as much as you'd wish to.
I frequently change my approach to music appreciation to avoid burn-out.
And especially Life in Surround reviews. I'm constantly changing the playbook there. And that usually stems from the realization that "I'm not having much fun anymore".
 

Mark Anderson

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AOQ, I feel your pain with rooms full of old equipment I just do not want to let go but be aware of all the joy you have brought to the rest of us and we can continue that for years due to your diligent efforts. Thanks so much for not throwing in the towel earlier
 

par4ken

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I love old equipment. The seventies stuff actually seems to be more reliable than the stuff from eighties and beyond. The biggest problem I've had are bad switch contacts, often you can spray them with a contact cleaner or use DeoxIT. I know that not everyone here is a technician, so I do understand what you must go through, but modern electronics is just not the same. It's amazing that so much of that vintage equipment is still functioning and with a simple capacitor replacement should be good for another fifty years! I could be wrong but I wouldn't expect a lot of todays equipment to last nearly that long.

Collecting vintage audio is very much like collecting vintage automobiles. Think of the simplicity of vintage autos compared to todays ridiculous overcomplicated machines. Todays cars won't even run without a computer! Try to push start a newer car, we used to do it all the time back in the day! Todays cars (and much of todays audio) have near zero curb appeal. Remember when cars all had their own style, not like today where they all look the same (ugly)! The main drawback of vintage is if you can't do the repair/restoration work yourself it becomes an expensive hobby! Those who can please do and enjoy!
 

LB-V

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I thought perhaps I was the only one who felt that way about the vintage gear. I cannot tell you how many times I swear that I am not going to have anything else repaired because it simply never ends. Even after I get stuff back from the likes of Bob Popham, channels will still drop out due to very old and ultimately dirty knobs... I guarantee they worked fine after he got done with them, but it takes more than a few minutes of de-oxit to get it cleaned up enough after all those years, and have it continue without any issues. My very expensive QRX-9100 that came second hand from QRXRestore less than two years ago, is now sitting on its side and holding up a nice pile of vintage stereo magazines and articles...right next to it is an infamous Quad Bob QRX-7001, holding up the rags I use to dust off some other pieces. The McIntosh MR-78 that I paid a premium for, died twice on me, until Absolute Sounds finally figured out something was frying the chip. I paid for repairs twice, shipping, etc. over the course of several years. Had it in operation with no issues for about a year now, and the bulb went out on the tuning meter. How is that possible? Why?. Who knows. Switches...yes, used a passive dbx 200 but it started dropping channels...old and dirty. Time to clean it up. But I am like you, I am not set up to take these things apart, and really do not have the desire at his point.

I could go on and on....I can relate. I have changed the rules so many times....no more vintage gear, repair the one piece I really enjoy and nothing more, sell everything and get all new gear, wait for the Involve Audio mini quad amp and do away with my vintage integrated amps...throw the QRX off the balcony...I never liked receivers anyway...now the old Oppo 83 is starting to stop playing at times, stutter and start again. The dark purple lens fell off of the display of my old Sony SACD player the other day...plop. The two sided tape finally gave way. Not to mention the go$ dam# remote battery cover for my 18 year old "modern" Yamaha DSP receiver just keeps falling off.

It's hard to explain, but I just keep coming back for more. I feel the pain, and the occasional misery of the vintage pieces...in the end, I change the rules, navigate the issue and find another path on the journey. I hope you can too.
 

boondocks

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Look very closely at the back of those RCA analog switches. the ones I have from Phillips are 4 in 1 out. But, and this is a big but, there are 6 input jacks for each selection, and 6 output jacks for the single output. In other words 6 independent channels/5.1, so of course no problem with Quad.
One linked in a previous post above, if you look closely it is 8 in 1 out, but there are only 3 input/output jacks. Unless it provides for ganging them together it's wasted money for surround input/output.
FYI.

Here's one 3 way switch that allows 5 input jacks for each of the 3 inputs. So up to 5.0


4 way switch with 5 input/output jacks

Build a switch box using relays? IDK sounded good at 4 AM.
 
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Sal1950

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I've just about had it up to here with this. All I want is to enjoy some music.....and instead, all I get are problems after problems after problems.
Oh brother, I feel your pain. When I was still living up in Chicago I had a bunch of kool working vintage tube gear and then the dark side of the force came to visit. Little by little they were letting the smoke out and even though I had a great service guy, the cost was just so far going beyond it's value I gave up on it all. As I prepared to move to FL I got rid of it all, just giving a lot away to a friend. Now I only run modern gear, with the exception of my Adcom amps, all 5 are at least 25 years old. But I'm now teetering on the edge of getting rid of them all and buying 1 new multich Class D amp.
At 72 I just don't have the energy to mess with the issues any more. :(
 

tonyE

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LOL... I guess you've never lived with vacuum tubes, huh?

I recently had a Marantz 2325 fully rebuilt, but it took me a while, years, before I found someone 15 miles north of me, so that helps a lot. I'm in SoCal. I'm planning on doing the Akai AS980 and Marantz 4215 as well... meanwhile the Sansui G-7500 is being redone -with original power transistors, which is a royal PITA. My turntable can be done by a couple of guys... so I'm sort of set on that too.

OTOH, my Entec woofers can only be worked by an outfit in Tacoma, WA and they need a pallet, each, to ship.

Speaking of shipping, my DIY Class A amps ran 120 bucks each to ship one way from SoCal to Ohio to get them rebuilt. Figure about 500 bucks for a return. But worth every penny.

Now, my current stereo is considered sort of vintage because I've owned it for so long... but again, living in SoCal I've been lucky to find people to work on them.. except that Conrad Johnson tube stuff usually gets worked on at the factory in Virginia, so....

Now, I don't know how your stereo is set up, but I gotta tell you, I can turn the Marantz 2325 on and have it play FM in about.. oh... three seconds. Meanwhile, the main rig takes... hmmm... power Lingo, power turntable, power DAC, power Android, power AD/DAC, power computer, make sure the preamp-amp interconnects go to the desired amps-speaker selection, power preamp, power amps.... wait about half an hour... and then start playing.

So, yeah, if you want it easy... but, I don't have an AVR.... my HT, well, that's another set up... ;-)
 

Marcsten

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If I may offer a bit of an opinion, I think that a big part of the problem you have is EBay. It all seems to wonderful. Tons of glorious equipment all described in glowing terms by sellers. And when it arrives? Rotted out garbage they no doubt found at garage sales. I will never buy anything more complicated than an old SQ decoder on EBay. For me, EBay is good for records, often, but never electronics and never ever vintage electronics. When I need something, I bite the bullet and get it from someone that has already rebuilt it that I trust. It never ceases to amaze me that 'Fabulous, super rare, super desirable Sansui receivers' are always available for a few hundred bucks. And the 'work great' except that only one of four channels has sound, the other three have static, and even that is only in tape monitor and not using the preamp and on and on. Its just not worth the headache. You get what you pay for and caveat emptor and all that crap. But, when it all comes together...BLISS!!!!
 

Marcsten

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LOL... I guess you've never lived with vacuum tubes, huh?

I recently had a Marantz 2325 fully rebuilt, but it took me a while, years, before I found someone 15 miles north of me, so that helps a lot. I'm in SoCal. I'm planning on doing the Akai AS980 and Marantz 4215 as well... meanwhile the Sansui G-7500 is being redone -with original power transistors, which is a royal PITA. My turntable can be done by a couple of guys... so I'm sort of set on that too.

OTOH, my Entec woofers can only be worked by an outfit in Tacoma, WA and they need a pallet, each, to ship.

Speaking of shipping, my DIY Class A amps ran 120 bucks each to ship one way from SoCal to Ohio to get them rebuilt. Figure about 500 bucks for a return. But worth every penny.

Now, my current stereo is considered sort of vintage because I've owned it for so long... but again, living in SoCal I've been lucky to find people to work on them.. except that Conrad Johnson tube stuff usually gets worked on at the factory in Virginia, so....

Now, I don't know how your stereo is set up, but I gotta tell you, I can turn the Marantz 2325 on and have it play FM in about.. oh... three seconds. Meanwhile, the main rig takes... hmmm... power Lingo, power turntable, power DAC, power Android, power AD/DAC, power computer, make sure the preamp-amp interconnects go to the desired amps-speaker selection, power preamp, power amps.... wait about half an hour... and then start playing.

So, yeah, if you want it easy... but, I don't have an AVR.... my HT, well, that's another set up... ;-)
Following my own advice (see elsewhere) I bought a pair of Conrad Johnson tube power amps several years ago as the backbone of my system's power. I bought two that had already been gone through, purchased all new (NOS GE) tubes, and man those things are built like a tank and, except for a funky power switch, they have had never so much as a hiccup. They are the way to go in my opinion. My son just got into a tube power amp. God help me I'm breeding this decease now...
 

tonyE

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If I may offer a bit of an opinion, I think that a big part of the problem you have is EBay. It all seems to wonderful. Tons of glorious equipment all described in glowing terms by sellers. And when it arrives? Rotted out garbage they no doubt found at garage sales. I will never buy anything more complicated than an old SQ decoder on EBay. For me, EBay is good for records, often, but never electronics and never ever vintage electronics. When I need something, I bite the bullet and get it from someone that has already rebuilt it that I trust. It never ceases to amaze me that 'Fabulous, super rare, super desirable Sansui receivers' are always available for a few hundred bucks. And the 'work great' except that only one of four channels has sound, the other three have static, and even that is only in tape monitor and not using the preamp and on and on. Its just not worth the headache. You get what you pay for and caveat emptor and all that crap. But, when it all comes together...BLISS!!!!

Hi Fi Shark only.

No eBay for vintage stuff... nope... tired of fools asking for $1000 for a "mint" Marantz 2220B... I hate those flippers with a passion!

I have a Sansui G-7500 being rebuilt right now... it's been in the family since new in '78, but it needs new power transistors ( those fail ) and tons of capacitors, small resistors, transistors, diodes, relays, lights ( no LEDs for me ), clean up, etc.... about $1K in work.

Honestly, you can get a nice used Audio Research D70 MkII for $1000 ( used to be less, I sold one of mine ), put new tubes in it and for about $500 more you will have a unit that blows away all of those vintage receivers. Add a simple used preamp (Sonograph?) or a First Watt B Korg and you got yourself a set up for around $2000 that will blow all of those '70 receivers and will be easy to use (except for the half hour to let it warm up).

When the price of those vintage units is driven, by clueless hipsters and flipping hacks, beyond good vintage Hi End components, you know it's time to ignore them... Heck, a good Stasis Nakamichi PA5 and PA7 MkI will blow your mind, and stay in solid state nirvana. Still, plan to shell out another $800 to rebuild it. Unfortunately, quad forces you to go to the early 70s...

Avoid eBay for sure.
 

Marcsten

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Hi Fi Shark only.

No eBay for vintage stuff... nope... tired of fools asking for $1000 for a "mint" Marantz 2220B...

I have a Sansui G-7500 being rebuilt right now... it's been in the family since new in '78, but it needs new power transistors ( those fail ) and tons of capacitors, small resistors, transistors, diodes, relays, lights ( no LEDs for me ), clean up, etc.... about $1K in work.

Honestly, you can get a nice used Audio Research D70 MkII for $1000 ( used to be less, I sold one of mine ), put new tubes in it and for about $500 more you will have a unit that blows away all of those vintage receivers. Add a simple used preamp (Sonograph?) or a First Watt B Korg and you got yourself a set up for around $2000 that will blow all of those '70 receivers and will be easy to use (except for the half hour to let it warm up).

When the price of those vintage units is driven, by clueless hipsters and flipping hacks, beyond good vintage Hi End components, you know it's time to ignore them... Heck, a good Stasis Nakamichi PA5 and PA7 MkI will blow your mind, and stay in solid state nirvana. Still, plan to shell out another $800 to rebuild it. Unfortunately, quad forces you to go to the early 70s...

Avoid eBay for sure.
As I say when I needed a full logic decoder for my condo I got it on EBay for $100. I wasn't going all in with another tate or the sound master. Too expensive. What you describe sounds similar to what my son just put together, although his was all gone through already. Paid about $3k total for everything except speakers. There are decent online hifi forums that have gear for sale that is often in really good nick, but of course they all frown on quad so its good for power amps and turntables.
 

LuvMyQuad

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One linked in a previous post above, if you look closely it is 8 in 1 out, but there are only 3 input/output jacks. Unless it provides for ganging them together it's wasted money for surround input/output.
FYI.
If you mean the one I linked,

27.91US $ 30% OFF|8 Ports 2 output Composite 3 RCA Video Audio AV Switch Switcher splitter Box Selector 8in 2out 8x2 for HDTV LCD DVD|av switch|3 rcarca video - AliExpress

Its 8 in and 2 out, not 1. It will allow for a combined 6 output channels, 2 sets of 3 channels each. Inputs are also ganged in sets of 3 for a total of 4 switchable 6 channel sources.

Edit: I'm wrong. You would need two of these boxes to switch 5.1 audio. The outputs are not independent. sorry.
 
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