This system was put together with the purpose to provide a decent level of fidelity and musical enjoyment while blending into its environment. Aside from this, it is also very affordable allowing me to spend most of my "music budget" on live performances and recordings. Any suggestions or comments are very much welcomed.

Components Toggle details

    • Classe Audio CD/DVD-1
    Integrated DVD/CD player/Transport
    • Classe Audio CP-35
    • Classe Audio CA-101
    100W/Chnl amp
    • B&W Signature 805
    monitor with stands
    • Cardas Quadlink
    xlr interconnect
    • Synergistic Research signature 2
    4 meters/ch
    • Velodyne HGS-12
    • Classe Audio cdp-100
    24-bit/352.8kHz upsampling cd player
    • Classe Audio cp-500
    • Classe Audio ca-2100
    100w/ch amp

Comments 33

Looking at your system again. I see you don't visit it much, but wondering how it stands today. I've always loved your Classe/B&W system. Nice spacious room too.


I have enjoyed your system over the years since you had your original Classe/B&W to this latest one. In my mind, this is one of the finest systems here on A'gon that I would love to own. I usually buy used stuff for a pittance as things come my way. Some day I hope to actually own a Classe/B&W system similar to yours. If you ever visit this post, I'd like to know what you think of it now, since your last changes back in '07.


As noted often above, great room, gear so on so on so on!


Budget system? I guess it relates to the "shack" you live in... no really your house is beautiful and the system is amazing. i didn't know a $3500 CD player is considered budget these days... you just made my system the K-Mart special!


Wonderful listening area overlooking the lake!


That is one of the most inviting rooms I have ever seen. Add a great system to it (which you have done) and I want to call you daddy. Do you need a 53 year old son? Oh wait, I think my wife, kids and grandkids would miss me. I guess I will just look at your pictures.


In the world of high fidelity, this is in fact a budget system. I suppose if you were used to the Circuit City special, you might think it is really high end and expensive. Spend a little time looking at real (not mainstream) hifi and you will see this is budget. Very well done at that.


So this is your idea of a small budget system??? Is your name Bill Gates?


AWSOME SYSTEM, ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL, and nice minimalist modern furnishings!

When you entitled your system's name "Simple system for a small budget" were you referring to your older Classe CA101, CP35, and CD1 w/ B&W805's. Your budget is not small to me, in fact I dream of your old Classe gear let alone you new stuff.

Incidentally, I just picked up a used CA100. I would like to get the rest of the older Classe like you once had (CP35 and CD1), as I can afford it.

The question is how does this old Classe combo sound by today's standards?


Great looking system. I agree with the isolation of components suggestions above, there are many benefits to be had from a great rack. All I can say is that I hope at some point in my life I can refer to a $25,000 system as being put together on a "small budget". Enjoy.


Great system, but had trouble paying attention to it with that view you have. Oh my, I would trade it all for that alone.


Thanks for the compliments guys (and gals).

Jazzfan--Hmmm, the system as a whole improved about 10% if I had to put a number on it. The first impression that came to mind was clarity and resolution. That's probably the biggest difference that I noticed but there are a few others. The sound stage is slightly wider yet voices are not distant sounding. I also like that strings sound slightly more natural since I listen to LOTS of classical and guitar music. My old classe still kicks ass for the money since dumping triple in money only got me not even twice better. Just tells you that classe stuff is well built and musical even if its not the latest and greatest (classe's known for evolutionary changes not revolutionary changes). Still, I don't regret upgrading. Pretty content for a while to come (keep those fingers crossed cause I'm eyeing the B&W 802Ds...then I'd have to upgrade amps...maybe the CA2200).


What do you think of the Delta vs older classe system you had. I'm itching to upgrade to the delta, but don't know if it's worth the money. Classe's been known to make very minor changes over the years (evolutionary rather than revolutionary).


Dangzh24, great setup. I truly believe in simplicity when it comes to component selection…less interaction one has to deal with. I too separate my 2 channel music system from HT. And btw, I love all the art…from the man created ones to the nature created view. Stunning…

Best, mt


Wow, what a balance between a system that one can live with and one that also sounds great. Your choice of components compliment your environment and does not dominate the room. Great job with the seemless integration that's a breath of fresh air!

--from a female's perspective.

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The new Delta series is supposed to be the best. I see that you are no longer stacking the components. Looks great!


System edited: recently upgraded to delta series.


That is a very beautiful room as others have said. I especially like the warm colors and the view out of that window!


I've moved the speakers out about a foot and a half from the wall. That seem to help the midrange a bit. As for moving them closer, I would like to but the window is in the way. I've followed the rule of an equilateral triangle, and so right now, the speakers are spaced out the same distance as to the listening position. I'm thinking it would be worse if the speakers are directly in front of the glass.


Beuatiful room. But alas, the speakers are too far apart, and too close to the wall. Work on that and you should be fine.



I don't no something about soundstage in your room, but your fotos are excellent!!!

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If you like the Finite Elemente stand, you would probably like Naim's stand (Naim Fraim), however it does not come cheap. I haven't actually heard it but I imagine it's got killer sonics too.


Beautiful room--and probably beautiful house! So that's the other half lives! If you're in the market for a SOTA rack, check out either the Grand Prix Monaco or the Silent Running Audio Craz-4. I've compared the two, and IMO the Craz is in another league entirely--but, then again, it probably costs as much or more than your entire system. But proper isolation can elevate any system to otherwise unimaginable levels. Trust me, I know.


You should investigate Gran Prix Audio. The company is headed up by a couple of guys who designed Swift Indy cars and they are expert in carbon fiber and vibration damping. Not cheap, but extremely effect. I heard them side by side with Finite Elemente (similar in price) and the Gran Prix Audio stuff is significantly better.

By the way, awesome view!


Perfectionist: It is a custom color by Sherwin Williams. Here's the color formulation (I hope the formatting is okay):


Rob: the area of the room (wood floor area) measures at 24 X 22 with vaulted ceilings with 19 ft at the apex. However, because the space is an open floor which encompasses the area of the kitchen, foyer, and stairwell, the effective enclosed area is a little over 1400 sqft. The 805 surprisingly do pretty well on their own without the sub, but everything drops off below 50 hz. Most of my recordings are classical and my favorites are usually piano solos, and so I don't feel like I'm missing much. The sub is there for times when I listen to electronica. The biggest "problem" that I have is that the room is "very echoey" because aside from the woodfloor, the rest of the area is covered with marble floors. It is a double edge sword because on some recordings, it actually gives it a sense of spaciousness, somewhat like that of a church or some concert halls. Audio purist will dislike that, but I kinda like it at times. As for the early reflection off of the window, I'm sure there's plenty of it hee hee hee. I guess because the space is not optimal for sound reproduction, I've just learned to live with it and just enjoy my music.

I do have a dedicated media room on the lower floor but it currently is used as a dedicated HT system. I don't like to mix 2 chnl with multi chnl because I don't want to monopolize the stereo when others want to watch a movie. I'm considering finishing out about 350 sqft of the house for a dedicated listening room, but I have a feeling that with a sound consultant and room treatments, I can't call it a "budget minded" system anymore. It is very true about how the room is often the most neglected and weakest link in the audio chain.


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