Corporate America has told me to return to the office next week, exactly 2 years after they told me to work from home due to the plague that had descended upon us. So, I guess now is a good time to reflect back on the last 2 years…
When COVID started I decided I needed a new hobby- a mostly “at home” and solitary hobby, probably. My kids, thinking it was some kind of new fad, had bought some music on “Vinyl”. I chuckled and told them that I used to have a bazillion of what I called “Records” or “Albums”. It was then that I decided what my hobby would be…. I would rebuild my old audio setup from “back in the day”. So, I set off to buy myself some vintage audio gear. The system I had in college was a technics turntable, Onkyo receiver and tape deck, used Bose 601 speakers, Sony CD player and a 10 band graphic equalizer with fancy bouncing lights. Oh, those were the days. I had all the chicks in my dorm room admiring my sound system (I may be mis-remembering that).
I was surprised that it did not take me very long to track down all the components to rebuild that old system. And, in the process, I learned my way around websites like “Hi Fi Shark”, “Reverb”, “Audiogon” and a sacred list by some guy named Craig.
I had fun. But, somehow I wasn’t done.
It seems I had caught a non-Covid bug in building this old system. I needed more gear. Why not build the system I actually WANTED when I was in college? Back to the websites and onto joining a group that calls themselves “THE Carver Site” … because, when I was in college, I wanted but could never afford- Carver gear.
Since that decision, it’s been a whirlwind of activity….
First I bought a C1 preamp and an m1.5t amp from a local dude who assured me that 350 W per channel would not blow up my house.
Then, I bought a TX-2 tuner.
Then, I bought another TX-2 tuner, because the first one didn’t have fancy rack handles and I wanted to make all my stuff match (still hoping that chicks would dig my system, too).
Next, I bought a restored Technics SL-D2 turntable (and over the last 2 years I’ve also collected over 100 albums to play on it.)
Then, I bought a Carver 900 “The Receiver”… at this point, I had moved on to building secondary systems for my kids. Or, at least that was the rationalization.
I briefly owned a pair of Polk SDA 2a’s then traded them for a pair of Infinity 8 Kappa’s I am still refurbishing.
Then, I took my C1 and m1.5t to Nelion to be updated and receive the “Bill D” treatment, because that’s what all the cool Carver kids were doing.
While at it, I bought another m1.5t. Hey, if one is good….right?
Then, I bought a broken Carver TL100 CD player and unsuccessfully tried to repair it myself.
Next, I bought an m0.5t amp for reasons that still escape me (it matches everything else, so……)
Then, I decided to build my own subwoofer…. Because, well, I had so many extra amps…
Then, I bought a Carver DTL200 CD player and, this time, successfully rebuilt it after ridding it of a nest of spiders.
Most recently, I left the vintage world, and built my own hi def network music streamer out of a Raspberry Pi, a Schiit DAC and somewhat confusing software from some guys in Italy.
I really don’t know what’s next. But, I’m pretty sure there WILL be a “next”. The COVID plague seems to be behind us. But, this hobby seems to be sticking with me. Writing all this down has caused me some introspection. I’m both proud and aghast at all I’ve done in these 2 years. At what point did a hobby idea become an obsession?
It’s been a busy and fun two year ‘vacation’. (I probably need to have a garage sale….)
Thank you goes to “THE Carver site” for advice and entertainment along the way. Here’s to more, plague free, years of audio fun!