First post, by keenmaster486
So the other day I decided to finally upgrade my hijacked-cassette-player amplifier (hadn't before, due to pure laziness. Yes I know, that was a really crappy setup to be using.)
I happened to have two old receiver units lying around. One Yamaha CR-640 from the 80's (solid state), and one Pioneer SM-Q300 from the 50's - 60's (tube-based).
The speakers I'm using are mid-range Polk Audio bookshelf speakers.
My input is a stereo USB DAC hooked up to my computer playing Spotify at the highest streaming quality (320 kbps).
I hooked up the Yamaha first and I was astounded at the difference in quality. I could hear things I never noticed before on these speakers. I was well pleased.
Then I remembered about the Pioneer and decided to give it a shot. I thought well, it's a lot older, it's probably a less advanced circuit, etc., you know, I love the sound of tube amps but will I really get as good quality from a circuit this old? This is something from the age of close to the infancy of hi-fi equipment.
I am listening to the Pioneer right now. And let me tell you, this thing packs a huge punch. It's as good or better than the solid-state Yamaha. Plus I get the warm, buttery-smooth tube amp sound that I love. I really can't detect very much distortion at any frequency range. The base sounds less choppy. The mids are pleasant. The highs are crisp and clear. Of course, the noise floor is terrible but you know, I don't care much about that - it adds a kind of character to the whole experience. I even prefer this to listening on my dad's Audiotechnica ATH-M30X headphones, which previously were my favorite listening experience.
This is really freaking cool, if you ask me. This receiver was built some 60 years ago, and it's kicking absolute butt with everything I'm throwing at it - modern pop music, classic rock, choral, classical, EDM even - it sounds good on everything.
Any thoughts? Similar experiences?
(on a side note, what is the better approach to use: cranking the receiver volume all the way and adjusting it at the computer, or cranking the DAC volume all the way and adjusting it at the receiver pot?)
I flermmed the plootash just like you asked.