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Max Q
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Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Sun Dec 15, 2019 8:32 am

Back in the ‘80’s several electronic companies sold ‘all in one’ stacked
component systems (not mini systems)


I bought a Sony version, In one package, it had a matched turntable, amplifier, dual cassette deck, multi CD player and tuner, it even came in its own custom rack


I realize technology has moved on a lot since then but I still have great affection for these type of systems and want to build a new one using modern components but including all those I had before



I’d prefer to stay with one manufacturer who
offers well matched components to drive a surround sound system



Suggestions?
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LovePlanes74
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Sun Dec 15, 2019 11:39 am

No suggestions on a modern system, but you have brought back some great memories of my teen years. Had a Technics stacking system which I adored. The cassette deck would do automatic fast forward to the next song, blew my mind at the time :D
 
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BartSimpson
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Sun Dec 15, 2019 12:49 pm

I'm not familiar with the latest hifi but I would not limit myself to only one manufacturer. They should be compatible anyway, or aren't they?
I just replaced a 20 year old Kenwood CD player with an older Technics player and am blown away with the even better sound...
As for the speakers - this is one area where I would say that size actually matters. I have a pair of 20 year old 1 metre tall JBLs which are as good and powerful as on their first day.
All this may have not helped you a lot, let's just say - good luck with your decision.
 
afcjets
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Sun Dec 15, 2019 12:51 pm

We had a NEC system and it was amazing. I remember the guy from the store came out to our house (this was before Best Buy and Circuit City and from an audio specialty store) and really sold my Dad on the quality, but I used it the most. I can't remember the name of the speakers but they were bookshelf speakers but really heavy and they were encased in real wood. The system itself was matte black and it looked really cool. I remember the turntable was really heavy too.
 
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Revelation
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Sun Dec 15, 2019 8:08 pm

Max Q wrote:
Back in the ‘80’s several electronic companies sold ‘all in one’ stacked component systems (not mini systems)

I bought a Sony version, In one package, it had a matched turntable, amplifier, dual cassette deck, multi CD player and tuner, it even came in its own custom rack

I realize technology has moved on a lot since then but I still have great affection for these type of systems and want to build a new one using modern components but including all those I had before

I’d prefer to stay with one manufacturer who offers well matched components to drive a surround sound system

Suggestions?

https://www.crutchfield.com/ is as good a place as any to start. Lots of information, but may or may not be the best price.

Surround sound translates to "home theater" these days, this is the buzz word you will want to start with.

Use the drop down menus on the top, they are pretty well laid out.

For instance https://www.crutchfield.com/learn/learn ... ivers.html might be a good place to figure out what features you want and https://www.crutchfield.com/g_10420/Hom ... ivers.html has a list of what is available for purchase, and this second page allows you to enable/disable each brand that you like to figure out what products they have. Then, once you select a brand of choice you can use the search function to see what matching components it offers, or you can simply call them up and ask them which components they recommend once you pick the main receiver/amplifier.
Wake up to find out that you are the eyes of the world
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Wake now, discover that you are the song that the morning brings
The heart has its seasons, its evenings and songs of its own
 
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DL717
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Sun Dec 15, 2019 9:13 pm

Max Q wrote:
Back in the ‘80’s several electronic companies sold ‘all in one’ stacked
component systems (not mini systems)


I bought a Sony version, In one package, it had a matched turntable, amplifier, dual cassette deck, multi CD player and tuner, it even came in its own custom rack


I realize technology has moved on a lot since then but I still have great affection for these type of systems and want to build a new one using modern components but including all those I had before



I’d prefer to stay with one manufacturer who
offers well matched components to drive a surround sound system



Suggestions?


Gotta start from the ground up these days. Yamaha is the only one that would offer you every component in the same brand that I’m aware of. And it’s going to cost a bundle. These setups were pretty cool. Yamaha even has a 5 disc rotating player. Love the retro on that one. Can’t believe they still make them.

https://usa.yamaha.com/products/audio_v ... index.html
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Kiwirob
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Mon Dec 16, 2019 10:37 am

The important question is how much money do you want to spend? A separate component system means a lot more dollars.

Component manufacturers who do turntable, pre amp, power amp, CD player, and loudspeakers are thin on the ground. Off the top of my head I can think of Linn, Rega, Technics, Yamaha and Pro-Ject who can all supply a complete system. The tricky bit is finding a manufacturer who makes a decent turntable and can supply everything else you want.

For my money I would probably look at Rega they make excellent turntables and paired with their excellent electronics, integrated amp (power and pre amp in one box), CD player and there own speakers. Or if I had more dosh to spend a Rega turntable with NAIM electronics and Focal Loudspeakers would fit nicely into my lounge, but not my budget.

If money is no object and you want everything from the same manufacturer then LINN is the only way to go, everything they make is excellent.
 
ParkFSI
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Mon Dec 16, 2019 2:08 pm

Don’t forget the milk crates !
Thread killer
 
AA747123
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Tue Dec 17, 2019 4:43 pm

Some of those old school systems are still pretty good. I just finally gave up my reel-to-reel tape deck and Boston Acoustics T-1000 speakers, as I am downsizing everything.
 
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Revelation
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Sun Dec 22, 2019 9:27 pm

AA747123 wrote:
Some of those old school systems are still pretty good. I just finally gave up my reel-to-reel tape deck and Boston Acoustics T-1000 speakers, as I am downsizing everything.

Yep, back in the :old: days single components were required to get the right amount of power and cooling and circuitry packaged.

Back in the early 80s I showed up to college with a dual cassette deck, FM tuner and amplifier in a home made shelf unit.

The boxes were similarly sized, they needed to be to get the packaging right.

The tuner and amp were vacuum tube based, the cassette deck not.

No vinyl albums or 8 tracks for me, and the CD was not yet invented!

In the :old: days a FM tuner took an appreciable number of components to implement, today having a FM tuner in an individual unit seems to be a joke, and the size of the media players are determined mostly by the size of the media.

Currently I have the remnants of an above average late 80s Kenwood component set in my house, left to me by my ex-wife for some reason or another. I still have the original speakers (still work well, sound good enough for me!) and a like-kind Kenwood replacement for the original amp bought from eBay since I liked the original one so much. All the other components (record player, cassette player, CD player) have all been trashed since they weren't all that great to begin with and weren't being used. I kept the FM tuner the longest but once Internet streaming came along there was no use for it. The original rack unit now serves as a storage unit with table top out in the garage.

I suppose if I cared about having a vintage matched set I would have taken better care of the stuff, but clearly I don't. All I want is something that functions well at a "good enough" level of quality.
Wake up to find out that you are the eyes of the world
The heart has its beaches, its homeland and thoughts of its own
Wake now, discover that you are the song that the morning brings
The heart has its seasons, its evenings and songs of its own
 
frmrCapCadet
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Mon Dec 23, 2019 1:11 am

Gave away my AR3s, traded my reel to reel Sony for a calculator (years ago obviously), Dual turntable long gone, I'm forgetting what medium high end amp I had son's inlaws still using it I think. Those months under a 5 inch gun have reduced my need for more advanced equipment. LPs and CDs are stored, but transferred to iTunes via a new high tech turntable (far cheaper, and likely better than the Dual).
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M564038
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Mon Dec 23, 2019 6:52 am

There aren’t really manufacturers equally good on all components, but here are general advice from a audio professional:

Put most of the budget into speakers. I end up advising people to buy B&W speakers as the best size fit as wrll as having the best quality and sound at several price points.
Look in that direction, even used ones, and you can’t really go wrong if you want anything neutral and hi fi.

For Sub and rear speakers, you can find something cheaper if you want.

There has been a revolution regarding amplifiers over the last 20 years, modern class D amplifiers are excellent, they can be had very reasonably priced.

Buy the cheapest cables you can find at a AV or general electronics store, they wont get better when more expensive, only look prettier.

As for source selector/preamp, there is a myriad, but select one that gives you the most up to date bluetooth and other digital connections, as well as having Hdmi in for surround TV-signals.

Thats pretty much it.
 
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Devilfish
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Wed Dec 25, 2019 3:47 pm

Building a decent system in this day and age is kinda anachronistic and largely for nostalgia buffs. That said, I'm bringing an old 150W Carver receiver to drive large DIY speakers with 12" woofers I left in the old country unused because the amp had given up the ghost. The Carver is very rare and sought after there and could be refurbished for comparatively far less money. Buying a new receiver with all the bells and whistles is a lot easier and the quality can be very good but it's like cheating...plus good, old 2-channel sound simply does it for me.

As for a "stack" system, components must match "physically" and finding ones that sound good together from a manufacturer is quite a challenge. Good "vintage" Marantz or Phase Linear gear could still be had, but servicing may be quite expensive. For the front end -- VPI, Sota, Rega, Linn, Thorens, Sumiko or Pro-Ject and a CD. Or you could go Japanese and try this..... :listen: .....

Image
https://i.pinimg.com/236x/82/5f/f6/825f ... amichi.jpg

Of course, you could splurge on esoteric separates. Suffice it to say that there's a bewildering array of equipment that's bound to try your patience and pocket. :dollarsign: :dollarsign: :dollarsign: :dollarsign: :dollarsign: :dollarsign:
"Everyone is entitled to my opinion." - Garfield
 
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777222LR
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Thu Dec 26, 2019 1:36 pm

Okay, it still definitely exists, and not for nostalgia. If you want true HiFi, it's the only way to go. Sonos, Bose, etc., cannot replicate the sound, at least yet. Here's my system that I just had installed a couple of months ago:

Rotel Audio RAP-1580 (Surround Sound Amplified Processor)

Rotel Audio RB-1582 MkII (2 Channel Amp) - Runs the front speakers

2 x Martin Logan ESL X - Front Channel Speakers - Electrostatic Speakers provide amazingly clear sound. They are some of my favorites

Martin Logan ElectroMotion Center Channel

2 x Martin Logan ElectroMotion R In-Ceiling Speakers (rear channels)

KEF Kub2 12 - Subwoofer

I do use a Sonos Port as an audio input to the surround processor because I have Sonos throughout my home (Outside of the living room where this system is), and I do like the ability to stream whatever I want onto my speakers.

Having said that, if you want this type of set up, it does come at a hefty price. My living room set up was around $17,000, which can be a fairly mild price tag when it comes to this type of thing. But there is a HiFi culture that exists much like the avgeek culture exists here.
 
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DL717
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Thu Dec 26, 2019 2:13 pm

Devilfish wrote:
Building a decent system in this day and age is kinda anachronistic and largely for nostalgia buffs. That said, I'm bringing an old 150W Carver receiver to drive large DIY speakers with 12" woofers I left in the old country unused because the amp had given up the ghost. The Carver is very rare and sought after there and could be refurbished for comparatively far less money. Buying a new receiver with all the bells and whistles is a lot easier and the quality can be very good but it's like cheating...plus good, old 2-channel sound simply does it for me.

As for a "stack" system, components must match "physically" and finding ones that sound good together from a manufacturer is quite a challenge. Good "vintage" Marantz or Phase Linear gear could still be had, but servicing may be quite expensive. For the front end -- VPI, Sota, Rega, Linn, Thorens, Sumiko or Pro-Ject and a CD. Or you could go Japanese and try this..... :listen: .....

Image
https://i.pinimg.com/236x/82/5f/f6/825f ... amichi.jpg

Of course, you could splurge on esoteric separates. Suffice it to say that there's a bewildering array of equipment that's bound to try your patience and pocket. :dollarsign: :dollarsign: :dollarsign: :dollarsign: :dollarsign: :dollarsign:


That’s just beautiful :bigthumbsup:
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Devilfish
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Thu Dec 26, 2019 7:29 pm

Kiwirob wrote:
Or if I had more dosh to spend a Rega turntable with NAIM electronics and Focal Loudspeakers would fit nicely into my lounge, but not my budget.

If money is no object and you want everything from the same manufacturer then LINN is the only way to go, everything they make is excellent.

Some people swear by an LP-12 and NAIM combination to temper that LINN electronics sound. And round it off with a pair of Harbeths or Spendors for that laid-backed air. :cloudnine:


Revelation wrote:
The tuner and amp were vacuum tube based

Three guesses --- Fisher, Harman or Scott? :scratchchin: McIntosh is a bit pricey for a college guy's pocket and doubtful the old man would lend his. :shakehead:

Revelation wrote:
In the :old: days a FM tuner took an appreciable number of components to implement

MD's analog FM tuners still fetch a tidy sum on the used market today. :dollarsign: :dollarsign: :dollarsign:

Revelation wrote:
Currently I have the remnants of an above average late 80s Kenwood component set in my house, left to me by my ex-wife for some reason or another.

Big, "ugly" packaged systems and "wardrobe"-sized speakers often fail the "WAF" test and were known to strain relationships. :wink2:


frmrCapCadet wrote:
Gave away my AR3s, traded my reel to reel Sony for a calculator (years ago obviously), Dual turntable long gone

A pity..... :sigh:


DL717 wrote:
That’s just beautiful

Quite. :cheerful:
"Everyone is entitled to my opinion." - Garfield
 
Carpilogist27
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Fri Feb 21, 2020 7:57 pm

Hi I am looking to sell my old technics system amp cd cassette and graphics equaliser along with Kano d135 and I believe the jamo pro 300 all seems to be working fine one know missing and one slider on the graphics equaliser, I’ve been told that it’s worth something because of it’s age but I have no idea any help specs are Technics Su-Vx820 technics SL-PG420A technics Rs-AZ6 and finally technics Sh-8045 any ideas?
 
andz
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Mon Feb 24, 2020 2:38 pm

DL717 wrote:
Yamaha is the only one that would offer you every component in the same brand that I’m aware of. And it’s going to cost a bundle


I had a Yamaha stack system back in the early 80s, turntable, amp, dual tape deck and equaliser all in a Yamaha stack cabinet with cassette and LP storage space. It was great for its time and when I lost my job and my company car in 1986, I swapped it for a Jaguar XJ-6!

I have Yamaha to this day, I have an RX-V396 AV receiver with 5.1 surround sound that I have had for donkey's years and it still produces great sound, although the advent of HDMI has left it behind for TV sound.

I also have 2 Yamaha motorcycles :D
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LCDFlight
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Mon Feb 24, 2020 3:39 pm

Unlimited possibilities here. Yamaha is good, NAD, Rotel, are good mid-fi component brands. The fanciest option is something like Krell, that's hi fi. Your stack would cost $50,000. Sony / Technics / Pioneer are the mass market. Really low end options were Fisher, Emerson.
 
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Tugger
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Mon Feb 24, 2020 4:27 pm

Interesting that some here are saying they must be a "matched system", from the same manufacturer. To me that was never a thing, a stack was each individual piece, the best option for each function, and matching to the capabilities you sought.

Tugg
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M564038
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Tue Feb 25, 2020 2:32 pm

You are right.
The goal for each component is to be as neutral as possible. A wire with gain, if you will. You use the products that fits, «matching» is really not a thing.

Tugger wrote:
Interesting that some here are saying they must be a "matched system", from the same manufacturer. To me that was never a thing, a stack was each individual piece, the best option for each function, and matching to the capabilities you sought.

Tugg
 
frmrCapCadet
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Tue Feb 25, 2020 2:41 pm

An aside: The human ear is a quasi-analog/quasi-digital sensor. Discoveries continue to be made, not only in the neurological processing, but also in the physical processing of those sound waves.
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Kiwirob
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Tue Feb 25, 2020 4:01 pm

Tugger wrote:
Interesting that some here are saying they must be a "matched system", from the same manufacturer. To me that was never a thing, a stack was each individual piece, the best option for each function, and matching to the capabilities you sought.

Tugg


But if you buy into a system like Naim or Linn the equipment works better with components from the same brands rather than mixing and matching with other brands.
 
M564038
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Re: Building a classic ‘Stack’ Hi FI system

Tue Feb 25, 2020 10:56 pm

Some manufacturers have proprietory solutions for wireless transmission, room-tuning and so on.
You can’t match those.
Any system using standard components(media players, amplifiers, speakers) comunicating via normal audio protocols i.e. (un)balanced line level or digital via toslink/spdif/Aes3/AES50/Madi/Dante/AVB/Ravenna, can be mixed and matched whatever way you please.

Kiwirob wrote:
Tugger wrote:
Interesting that some here are saying they must be a "matched system", from the same manufacturer. To me that was never a thing, a stack was each individual piece, the best option for each function, and matching to the capabilities you sought.

Tugg


But if you buy into a system like Naim or Linn the equipment works better with components from the same brands rather than mixing and matching with other brands.

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