I'm pretty happy with what I have, after a lot of speculation and experimentation. My Advents were converted to "Econowaves" and moved to another room for TV duties. My living room is for music only. I'm now certain I love SET and vinyl. I like good digital, sometimes a lot. But SET + vinyl does it for me.
I can never remember the model name, but this CD player does its job to my satisfaction. I miss my Rega Apollo-R, but I think the NAD is more than up to the task. However, I prefer listening to vinyl.
DIY Darling 1626 amp
Sounds as good to me as my old 6B4G amp did. Tom McNally does a great job building these. Though I really enjoyed having a First Watt F6 in my system, when the six-month-long summer rolls around here in Austin, it's just too damn hot.
47 Laboratory "Treasure" passive preamp
Another component that seems to hang around, no matter what.
Well Tempered Labs Simplex
Gets out of the way and does the job with aplomb.
Fidelity Research MC 201
Moving coil cartridge, 0.16 mV output. My "other" cartridge is an Ortofon Black 2M moving magnet. I like the FR better.
Softone Model4 Phono Stage
Has SUT's built-in, for MC tubed goodness.
Omega Speaker Systems Super Alnico High Output Monitors
97 dB sensitivity is essential for that low output SET sound. I had a subwoofer hooked up, but I like the music better without it. It's all "more of a piece," if that makes any sense. I suspect the sub wasn't integrated properly or was too slow to keep up with the alnico drivers.
Sugden Audio Products Phono Preamp
I tried to sell this phono stage on A'gon, AK, and A'mart--for half price!--but got no takers. I listened to it today and decided I really do like it too much to sell so cheaply. I like my Softone slightly more, but the Sugden is very good, even when using the very low output Fidelity Research cartridge.
VPI Industries Cyclone
I use Audio Intelligent's Enzymatic/Super cleaners with this machine.
You can get great sound as a bottom feeder. I have. Craigslist is a smorgasbord of potential goodness. I had Large Advents for a while a surrogate while awaiting my "audiophile" grade speakers....enjoy...
Nice budget rig. Upgrading your speakers will make a major improvement to your sound. I had the CA100 before and it excels with very detailed speakers. Your cdp is also on the warm and musical side, so again this confirms a highly resolving speaker would bring your system to the next level.
I think you made a bunch of great decisions on building your system. I am sure there are many systems that cost a lot more and do not sound as good as yours. Looks like something I would enjoy listening to. Nicely done.