A modest hifi - a Network / CD player directly driving an amplifier. I'm really enjoying how the Marantz and W4S work so well together without a preamp.

I got away from hifi a few years ago because over time, I had strayed from an essentialist philosophy to enjoy music, to pursue better, an enemy of enjoyment. I thought about extended bass. Room response, better. I bought another black box, then another black box. I made it overly complicated - subwoofer processor, more amplifier channels, more cables, more remotes. I was listening more to the representation of the music, instead of the music itself, so I lost my enjoyment, and listened less and less. So when I got really busy in life, the hifi went into boxes and storage for several years - I had lost site of what had mattered, the enjoyment of the music.

Being away from it helped me think differently when I came back to it. I'm still just as busy, but I realize that what I get from emotionally investing in the performance of the artists, allowing them to affect me, is time well spent. The pursuit of better only distracted me from being present in the performance. So after doing some listening and trialing and thinking, I pulled out all the extra black boxes to distill it back down to essentials.

In the comments, I put a bit of a running log about my thoughts along the way. Here is what I have removed:

Velodyne SMS-1 processor
Musical Fidelity x10 tube buffer
Sony HD FM tuner
Bryston B60R
All the associated cabling (4 interconnects), power cords (2 cords, 2 warts), and remotes (3)

Room Details

Dimensions: 21’ × 14’  Medium
Ceiling: 8’

Components Toggle details

    • Marantz ND8006
    • Wyred 4 Sound Multi Channel
    Class D Ice 4 channel amp, 2 x 125W, 2 x 250W into 8 ohms
    • Gallo Acoustics Reference 3.0
    Still exciting.

Comments 16

Showing all comments by ejonbli.

View all comments

I really like your system and the philosophy behind it.  I would love to do something similar, i.e. remove much physical media and put it in a black box.

However, to be honest, I do not know how much I value the physical collection I have put together.  I have sold records in bulk before and regretted it.  I ended buying some back, unfortunately in worse condition than my originals and more expensive too.  So don't want to go there again.

What I do know is that I can't rely on the likes of Spotify, what is in their library today maybe gone or changed tomorrow.  So much on internet radio though as you say, so it's very easy to listen to that all day and enjoy the gems you come across that way.

You and your system has given me food for thought though.  Many thanks and enjoy the music.