Money, money, money

Does everyone else here have unlimited funds, a money tree growing in their garden? Not me.

Of course you don’t buy the latest gadget with the primary concern being about selling it, but I’ve always thought resale values are a very good measure of how good something is. You can argue whether good and popular are the same things, let’s not go there.

I sold a pair of Harbeth P3ESR earlier this week. In fact I didn’t even sell them, I gave them in part exchange to a dealer. Even Paul admits these speakers, which sit on Daren’s desk, are GREAT speakers.

I thought I’d had them 3 or 4 years. Turns out I bought them in 2014. So in 6 years after paying £1,350 I sold them for £1,000, which an average depreciation cost of 4% per year of ownership. About $100 per annum for a great pair of speakers.

One of the disincentives to buying PS Audio in the UK is the difficulty in selling and getting much money back. After about 5 years I got 35% back on a regenerator and I sold it in Germany. It also took me a year to sell.

I’ve used quite a bit of Quad “vintage” because you can sell for what you paid. “Vintage” to me means it was good 20 years ago and still is. Very few companies are able to make such products. Perhaps the Stellar Phono Preamplifier is one of those?

The problem is that when a product is new no one has the faintest idea how long it will last, whether it is reliable, will remain serviceable and whether it will remain fashionable.

Am I arguing to buy vintage, which manufacturers hate, or do people seriously think about their long-term investment value?

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Steve, I’m going to guess most of us don’t live in the “we can afford anything we want” camp. I certainly don’t. While I have in a few cases bought new big ticket (to me) items from dealers, in most cases I try to find gently used gear being put up for sale on these various audio forums. I think if we’ve had the luck to hear many other systems, learn how to do judicious / careful reading of audio gear opinions and reviews, go to shows, there’s a decent chance of being able to buy something used that may suit our needs. At least I’ve had good luck in that regard. Only in a few instances did something I bought turn out not to be good in my system, and since I bought them used I was able to flip them back on the used market for pretty much what I paid. I’d say about half of my system - maybe a bit more - is comprised of used gear I purchased either from other audio enthusiasts or from sellers like Reno who offer demo/used gear.


It is a hobby. Its very purpose is to waste time and money.


I think each of us has a unique set of resources and needs that shape how we approach the creation of an audio system that makes us happy. I am 70 years old, retired, and have several health problems that are likely to limit my life expectancy. I have saved enough money to live comfortably, but I do not have unlimited funds. I choose audio equipment carefully, but I spend less than I would like to and more than my wife would like me to on my audio hobby. I have a mix of new and vintage gear, and resale value no longer plays an important role in my decisions about audio purchases. I am now mainly concerned with buying gear that is high quality, not too expensive, and likely to make my adult son happy when I am no longer around. At my age, I mainly think about what I can reasonably afford and what brings me joy.


And how we so much enjoy the unending tweaking, upgrading

Oh the fun and enjoyment…!!


Your point can all be clarified by your use of the term “investment”.
I think we can agree that rarely are hobby or entertainment purchases “investments”.
When the vintage products that you are thinking about were current, I doubt they were sold in sections of the shop labeled 'investment purchases".


Steven, Steven, Steven. You’ll like what just arrived this AM:

(In Valley Girl voice) They’re like…soooo meta!

And yes, going up against P3’s (more expensive) and Dunlavys (given to me).


Congratulations, @badbeef. I love my original LS50s but all the reviews suggest these metas are a cut above. I look forward to your assessment!

Mike D

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Pretty good right out of the box :+1:t3:

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It’s long since I heard small speakers with subs…did the „hole in the middle“ effect (you’ll hear the small speakers range and sub bass, but not the punch and volume that happens inbetween) improve?

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Daaaammnnn! Big move Beef!

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Yes, it has. Part of what led to getting these was getting the Dunlavy MTMs around the same time as I got a new pair of smaller subs (JL Audio e110) for another purpose. They haven’t made it to where they’re supposed to go yet, as they mate so well with the Dunlavys.

My current theory is people tend to pair too-big subs with smallish two ways, and it is VERY difficult for either set of speakers to close the sonic gap between say, a 6" woofer and a 12" sub. The Dunlavys are sealed-box, with single-order crossovers, and really drop off below 80Hz. But with 10" subs which can work well up into that area, they meet in the middle of their ranges well.

Like the Dunlavys - but via a different method - the KEFs deal with both time alignment and phase distortions that standard two ways (like the P3’s) inherently have. So that’s another part of the equation that led to my curiosity about the Metas.

None of this is making any pronouncements about one speaker or approach vs. another. They all still have pros and cons. But they’re all both fun and not terribly expensive. Though I will say that some can be very responsive to front end. So this is with what some might consider a disproportionate bunch of stuff in front of the speakers.


I’ve gotten back into the hobby by way of the PS Audio SGCD and 2x M700’s last year. Enjoyed both immensely and then the improvement bug hit me this year. Traded in the SGCD for a new DirectStream DAC Sr. and paid the price differential via PSA’s trade in program and discounts at the time.

This Summer, I traded in 3x M700’s and a S300 into The Music Room for a Balanced Audio Audio Technology VK50-SE Tube Preamplifier. The KEF 105/3’s that a friend gave me now have 2x internally Orchard Audio STARCRIMSON Amplifiers paid for from the sale of Bose F1 Subwoofer. 2x ICE Power 1000W @ 4ohms were bought with funds that were leftover from The Music Room trade in.

An Onkyo PR-SC5530 runs the 5.1 side of things which was a measly $600 purchase from the gentleman that gave me free all the KEF’s and an Adcom 7300 5 Channel Amplifier (90W @ 4ohms).

I love feeding old Speakers new source equipment. instead of the the other way around. Be they KEF 105/3’s, KEF 104/2’s, Bose Sealed Box 901’s, or a apir of Ohm Walsh on wall surround Speakers.


Due to the crossover design, I don’t believe the KEFs are phase coherent like Dunlavys or Vandys. They do, however, address power response and lobing issues that the Harbeths have.

So - thought that part of the issue with lobing was phase response? So why wouldn’t a concentric sort that out?

Because when the low pass and the high pass crossover filters are summed, the phase of a higher order crossover is altered compared to the input. First orders (6dB slope) sum to be phase and amplitude accurate but present their own unique challenges and drawbacks.

I never cared about resale value.

However, I have learned that sticking with established high-end brands pays many dividends:

  1. They typically do sound darn good
  2. The companies back them… I had CJ preamp serviced by them out of warranty for free!
  3. Their products are easier to sell although this is not that important to me
  4. Their products are usually less “quirky”, and work in most systems… usually

I don’t buy the hottest or the latest any more regardless of how they sound. Done.

Bruce in Philly

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Well, dang! Sending KEFs back, forthwith!

But…hang on…there is Music happening here… :metal:t2:


Beef, if the lack of phase coherency was a massive nonstarter we wouldn’t own two sets of Harbeths. :wink: …But you know that! :smile:


It’s that pesky subjective experience reality harshing my measurement mellow again… :cowboy_hat_face:

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