Monday, December 25, 2006

CD recommendation: 蔡琴 old CDs

Recently, I have spending more time litsening to the CDs that I have kept. In particular, I have managed to find my "old" 蔡琴 CDs from the 1996, 1997 and 2001 which have excellent recording. Many of us have focussed a large potion of our cash on getting the best amplifiers, best speakers, best tubes, interconnect and speakers wires but we often necglect the very important "software" which is the CDs.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Tannoy with Pye Mozart HF10

To generate some funds for my Western Electric 124 amplifiers plus the fact that I am planning to move my apartment at the end of the month and to avoid damage of the vintage amplifiers, I have sold some of my favourite amplifiers.
One of the amplifiers which I originally intended to sell is my Pye Mozart HF 10. However, not many audiophiles knew about the amplifiers so I have decided to "hand carry" the amplifier back to Singapore via Malaysia together with the Chi Ping speakers and other items for my audiophiles friends in KL. Even though the parcels were heavy, the smile in my friends faces are very rewarding indeed.
In the mean time, I have decided to use the Pye Mozart HF 10 with my Tannoy Cantebury for my living room and leave the Western Electric KS16608 + Marantz 7 + Rogers 15 ohms LS3/5a for the study room, until a right buyer comes along..someone who really appreciate single ended amplifiers and understand vintage amplifiers..

As I have not played with the Tannoy for about 2 months as a result of "packing" and "shipping", the music was a little cold initially. After several days of playing, the familiar smooth music began to return. Even though the Pye Mozart HF10 is only 8 watts, it is sufficient to feed the rather high efficient speakers and the muisc was great. Moreover, the rectangular shape living room and with sufficicent depth has allowed the tannoy to be played in a better environment then in Hong kong where my living room was diamond in shape.

It is ,therefore, true that the most expensive part of the "hifi" is the listening environment. With a good room structure and size, it is easier for one to achieve good sound from the system. Secondly, the amplifiers system must be able to match the speakers. Thirdly, I have always believe that any vintage amplifiers must be fully restored in order to be able to listen to the amplifiers true music which is why I have to buy 2 Marantz 7 in order to find one in best working as well as cosmetic condition; 2 pair of Western Electric KS 16608 in order to get one in perfect set; 3 set of TL12.1 in order to get one good set.etc... The process of "upgrading" was very troublesome but that was the only way for one to keep the same number of system but focus on QUALITY rather then QUANTITIES..where less is more. Unless the buyer is an audiophiles who appreciate what they are buying..I rather keep the amplifiers until the RIGHT onwner comes..

Western electric 86 amplifiers

For those of you who is keen to know more about the Western Electric 86 amplifiers using the 300B tubes, please visit:

Ending of year 2006

Chritsmas is around the corner.

Looking back during May 2006 when I first started the Western Electric KS 16608 thread at R33 where I received many sarcastics remarks on the WE KS 16608 amplifires, I was very happy that I have persisted in my own hifi belief and walked my own path.

Moreover, I am extremely happy that I have also managed to find my dream amplifiers - the Western Electric 124 amplifiers as well as the vintage 1940s Western Elecric 350 tubes & the 755a speakers.

For those of you who is searching for your dream gears, keep your dream alive and follow yor dream. Wishing everyone a Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Hifi debate

Recently, there were some debate in R33 on the topic of hifi equipment vs music. Someone has mentioned that using an cheap MP3 player, one could enjoy music which I agree. In fact, the different between the use of various mix & match hifi equipemts vs. using simple MP3 system is in the different level of "listening" requirement.

The function of the hifi equipment is to reproduce music in as realistic format as possible. Some of us has a lower requirement with using of a simple mini combo. Others are more demanding in wanting to listen to realsitic, transparent, and music with good soundstage. There is no right or wrong...only the differences in needs and requirements.

Nevertheless, as R33 is an audiophiles forum, the main objective is the pursuit of music excellence where the "demand" from the system is stringent. Using the latest James Bond movie as an example. Some would prefer to watch it in the cinema in order to enjoy the surround soundstage, the big screen and the comfortable environment. Others are willing to make do with a good home system and home plasma TV with original DVD. Some would prefer to buy pirated DVD and watch it at home on TV where the images are not clear and poor sound stage. Everyone of the above is having the same objective of "watching" the latest James Bond movie. However, the "demand" is different..

For hifi, the objective of the hifi system is in the listening of music. Thus, when one chooses to use an MP3 to listen to "compressed" form of music vs. the listening of audiophiles recording CDs, we are talking of different thing. For the latter, the audiophiles aim to reproduce music using the various "best" (in his own standard) hifi equipment to suit his demand.

For me, since I have gone into the hifi arean using vintage equipments, I am hoping to use the equipment to reproduce the sound that I like. The WE 124 + 755a + Fishers 50C is a combo that I would continue to listen and explore in order to bring out the best in its system...

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Hifi Taiwan

Besides Japan & Korea, I think Taiwan has the next largest collection of Western Electric amplifiers as the Taiwanese has traditionally been closed to the United States.

I was lucky to have met Mr. Huang who has carefully selected, matched and restored my Western Electric 124B. He has more then 10 sets of WEs 124 for me to choose. What a luxury! I must say!

According to Mr. Huang who has sold more then 80 sets of Western Electric amplifiers in Taiwan, it is getting harder and harder to find good condition and matched pair WEs and the prices are getting higher and higher.

The Tawanese audiophiles generally prefer US made amplifiers. In addition, owing to the availability of space, they tended to own larger speakers. For some serious audiophiles, many of them would go for the professional hifi equipments such as the Western Electric, Altec, RCA, etc..

I was told that Editor Chan was in Taiwan for visiting of the Taiwanese audiophiles last week. We can most probably read it in next month's issue of Tube world..

Tannoy cantebury reached home

After much traveling, my pair of vintage Tannoy Cantebury has finally arrived Singapore. My wife, with the help of the movers, have helped me to un-pack and place it at my living room.
The Tannoy Cantebury fits nicely in my living room. When I am back in Singapore next week, I will try to plug in my pre-amplifiers and amplifiers and test the sound in the totally new environment!
For large speakers, I have audition and used the Altec 604E, the Tannoy Chartswoth and finally settled down with the Tannoy Cantebury with red monitors. I like the Tannoy Cantebury for its sound and its look. Even my wife finds the speakers very elegance looking...

More tubes for the 124 - 6J7

The Western Electric 124B amplifiers use 6L6 (350B), 5U4G and 6J7 tubes. This afternoon, I went hunting for vintage 6J7 tubes. As these tubes were not so commonly used in the modern amplifiers or vintage ones, the prices are relatively cheaper then the other tubes.
I was lucky to find 8 units of the GEC NOS 6J7 tubes for my 124b. There are two types of 6J7 tubes one in metal format and the other in glass coke shaped bottle tube format with the latter being more expensive and better sound.
I find it very "painful" to pay for tubes as the vintage tubes prices are almost as high as some vintage amplifiers. However, like what they say: "Good tubes come with Good sound". Thus, to pay for tubes is a process that one has to go through. The need to pay for tubes has further reinforced my belief in having focussed in amplifiers. I have stramlined my collection to amplifiers using 6L6 tubes so as to minimize the need for storing of all kinds of tubes.
In my opinion, amplifier using EL84 tubes sounded sweet but it lacked power. Amplifiers using KT88 tubes (e.g Mcintosh MC275) sounded strong but rough. Amplifiers using the EL34 tubes has power and speed but the sound is not refined. The 300B tubes sounded refine but lacked the dynamism. Thus, the 6L6/KT66 tubes amplifiers are the most "balanced" amplifiers with sufficicent power and yet refined.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Western Electric 124 amp with 755a speakers

After a long wait and long journey, the WE 124 finally reached home. This morning, I have finally managed to take the amplifiers out from its box and connected it with my Western Electric 755a. Finding the Western Electric requires lots of luck as it is not easy to find as many collectors will only buy and they rarely sell.

Getting the We 755a speakers was the first step in painting the overall Hifi picture. The serach for the WE124 was another challenge as I have very little knowledge of the amplifiers plus one rarely see the amp in the shop. I have went to the Hifi shop at Hong Kong Central on several occasions wanting to audition the amplifier but the sales lady always remarked that the amp are in the warehouse and the boss was not around. I must have visited the shops more then 5 occasions but all without success. I have also reqested a vintage hifi shop to bring one set in from US but after months of waiting, the shop at Tak Fak was still unable to find them. Without much choice, I would have to search overseas for them.

Finding the amplifiers is the first task. Matching them is another challenge. Luckily, Mr Huang has ten units of WE 124 amplifiers for me to select and match. He has managed to matched mine with both having the same WE 124 "B" series and the serial nos is relatively close serial nos of 1613 & 2059.
The music from the 124 was exceptional naturally....西电 WE124单声道功放

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Western Electric 124 - Finally got it!

Yesterday night was a very eventful night as I have finally collected my fully restored WE 124B amplifiers together with the NOS Western Electric 350B tubes, depsite having suffered long flight delay and heavy rain!

My pair of WE 124B were specially selected from the wall of Western Electric in order to ensure the best matched.

The listening session at the workshop was great as I was able to listen to a varieties of music using the WE124b amplifiers. I must say the WE124B was truly a great pair of amplifiers as there were able to reproduce music in its original form and it sounded very natural and smooth, which suited to my taste and preference of music.

I have AB test using both the vinatge 6L6 tubes and the much famed NOS 1940s WE 350B tubes. The WE350B tubes has much more depth, warm and authority vis-a-vis the 6L6 tubes! I have decided not to have th 618 line input as the gain would be too much for hifi use at home. Using the money "saved", I have used the $$ to get great tubes such as the NOS WE350b. The prices of the WE350b tubes will varies according to condition as well as the year of production (1940s, 50s,60s,70s,etc).

Special wooden boxes were made to ensure the safe transportation of the WE 124. Even though the boxes of WE124b were heavy, my heart was filled with so much energy..

With the acquisition of the WE124b, I think I have found the "ultimate" amplifiers that I desire! With the WE124 amplifiers, I feel that my decison of letting go some of my other amplifiers was a right one as "Quality" is more important than "quantities", where less is more..

I would continue to streamline my other amplifiers such as the Pye Mozart HF10, Sound Master No 36 and WE KS16608 (mint condition) in order to get a pair of Brooks 12A using 2A3 tubes. If I am able to streamline to that, my amplifiers set will look like these:

  • Marantz 7 + Brook 12A (to replace KS 16608) + Tannoy Cantebury or LS3/5a 15 ohms
  • Fisher 50C + Leak TL12.1 or WE 124 + WE 755a speakers

Wishing everyone a Merry Christmas and may all your Hifi dreams come true!

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

The search for sound

Many of my friends have asked me why do I like vintage amplifier and why do I keep changing my gears. These are the questions that I have asked myself too!
When I first started with hifi, I used modern tube amplifiers (Mini Houston, Unison research with dali Manuet 2 speakers) and I was immediately attracted by the sound from tube amplifiers.
When I came to Hong Kong, the sound of vintage Quad II immediately captured my ear and from then on I have started to like and listen to vintage amplifier using the famous LS3/5a speakers. In my view, items produced in the past were using better quality component as there were "luxury" item made to last. In modern days, many of the items were all mass manufactured lacking the "soul" and the lasting quality.
The reason for my changing of amplifiers was due to my eagerness to search for the best condition possible vintage gear. I sold my first pair of Quad II very cheap as the transformers have been replcaed by modern type. From then on, I have began the process of upgrading and testing of different classic amplifiers, pre amplifiers and speakers with the common theme of being vintage.
I was lost at the world of hifi for a period where I was virtually buying any well know vintage brands available at the market ( Quad II, Pye, Leak, Mcintosh, Fishers etc) and sucked into the rat race competition. This has resulted in my apartment being filled with vintage gears. Along the process, I can sense lots of red eye and white eyes treatment from audiophiles that I have thought were my friends. I began to see the growing competition among some audiophiles who like to "win" and own the most.
Fortunately, I have managed to meet Alan who has pointed to me the important of finding my own hifi direction as the gears are merely tools helping us to reproduce music. With that in mind, I have began streamlining my vintage gears all over again but this time, the objectives & criteria are very clear in my mind:
  • The vintage gear must be strong in producing vocal as almost 90s% of my CDs collection are vocal music - e.g. Western Electric 755a & Ls3/5a speakers
  • The vintage gear must be in its best condition possible despite the age where quality is more important then quantities - Leak 12.1, Tannoy Cantebury, Marantz 7, WE 124, Radio Craftsmen etc
  • It must be a real classic item and flagship of the era - example Fisher 50C, Western Electric 124, Leak 12.1
  • It must have collector values and investment potential where prices will escalate with time (examples Leak 12.1, WE 124, 755a, Marantz 7, etc)

With the above simple rules, I am able to cut love many of the other nice vintage items which have note been able to meet the criteria set to other collectors and keep those with the most numbers of "ticks" following the criteria set as above. Using the excel sheet, I am able to work out my top "must have" lists and using that to guide me in my hifi journey. The list of criteria acted like the "map" and my ears and eyes are the "compass".

However, many of the real vintage and classic items such as Leak 12.1, Western Electric 755a and WE124 are so rare that luck often played an important part too! Nevertheless, if one keep searching, one will be able to find them. There are so many pessimist saying that it is impossible to find these items which I have managed to prove them wrong : )

Will I continue to hunt for new items? The answer is yes, of course! The wishlist for 2007 are a pair of 12 watts Brook 12A power amplifier and the Western Electric preamplifier. However, to get the Brook 12A, I will have to adhere to the "one out one in" policy as I do not wish to fill my whole apartment with items that I seldon use and of course the itemmust be in its best condition possible.

For those who wished to build their own "ultimate hifi system", all you have to do is to keep searching and you will be able to find them. Remember "Just do it" and "Impossible is Nothing", taglines from Nike and Adidas..

Good CD recommendation: Jacky Cheung

Jacky Cheung CDs have been often classified as pop Cds. For audiophiles who is looking for great audiophiles quality CD, this CD is a must. In addition, the made in Japan version is also a must as you can truly hear the different in qualities of recording.
I was able to find this 1995 recording in mint condition and aftern comparing with the made in HK version, I can really hear the different from my system.
If you only want ONE Jacky Cheung's CD, this is a must as it captured many of the very popular hits of the 90s...with the added advantage of excellent recording!
I have started the process of searching for quality recording Cds as the "softwares" part of the hifi is often the neglected portion as we often spends more time, efforts and money on the power amplifiers, the pre amplifiers, the cables, the tubes but not enough time for the search of good quality CD...An irony isn't it?
Cheers and Be happy!

Hifi Equipments

Listening to music is a hobby. It helps to reduce stress and gives one sense of peace. Hifi equipments are the vehicles that help to reproduce and deliver the music to our ears. A "good" set of equipment (which is subjective) will help to deliver the music that suits one's taste.
The problems with many vinatge audiophiles are that different brands, makes and types will reproduce sound which will appeal to different set of ears and when playing with different types of music. Thus, like what Alan said, finding the muisc direction is critical in order to avoid spending too much money & time on equipements.
I like female vocal alot which is why I prefer the Western Electric 755a speakers as well as the Western Electric 124 amplifier which emphasize on strong mid. In the end, I think one could only manage at maximum 3 sets of amplfiers at home at a given time. The plugging and unplaugging and the shifting will take up more time then active listening of music and enjoyment of music if one wants to rotate the various amplifiers that one has.
For 2006, I am glad that I have managed to streamline my amplifiers to a very manageable level and keeping only those that I really like namely:
  • Leak 12.1 or Western Electric 124B + Fisher 50C + Western Electric 755a (HKG)
  • Western Electric KS 16608 + Marantz 7 + Rogers LS3/5a 15 ohms (SIN - Study room)
  • Pye Mozart + Tannoy Cantebury (SIN Living room)

Spares speakers that I would cut love to collectors are:

  • Phass fullrange speakers.

I am glad that I no longer participate in the rat race competition of owning the most number of vintage amplfiers! In addition, selling hifi equipemts in teh Review 33 is really a pain. Firstly, there are those who say they would come but didnt turn up. Secondly, there are those who came and spent 3-4 hours listening and didnt want to buy. Third, ther are those who asked you to reserve the amplifier for them but didn't want to put down deposit.

There was one occasion when I advertised for sale of vinatge Tannoy and one guy called Chow came. Aftern much audition, he has mentioned that he was making an audition on behalf of a friend overseas and he could not confirm and still wanted me to reserve for him for 12 hours. I have told him that it will be first come first serve and there will be another interested buyer who is on his way to test the speakers. I have told him that unless he place a deposit, I will let the other interested party view and if the second buyer didn't want, I will then reserve for him for 12 hours. In the end, the other party Mr. Sin paid the $$ and took the speakers.

This incident occuured close to 9 months ago. Unfortunately, Chow has mentioned in the recent R33 post claiming that I have broke my promise. I am always amused that a well educated person can be so self centered that he only see his point of view and claiming that he is right. If he really wanted the amplifier, all he needs to do is to place a small deposit and I would have kept the amplifier for him. However, despite hours of audition, no deposit was placed, plus the undertainties of the need to check with overseas friend before he could help his friend buy. I have sold the speakers in a very friendly and low price in the hope of quick sales. With such customer, who has refused to place deposit and still insist of seller reserving the speakers, I wonder will any shop willing to do such a deal? After such an incident, I have began to see how a person character is not based on his level of education or his job or his wealth but by his manners and the way he carry himself.

I have checked with some of my audiophile friends and it seems that they have similar experiences too.

Phew..What a relieve that I have managed to streamline my amplfiers! : ) My family members will be glad too!

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Good Vocal CD - 蔡琴 Chai Chin series

With the completion of streamlining my vintage hifi gears, I have spent more time in search of nice CD and spent more time listening to the various music.

For those who is keen on Mandarin vocal music, 蔡琴 Chai Chin is a must. The "蔡琴民歌 Ming Ga" CD is a must if you only want to own one of her CD. Her Golden Voice series 1 & 2 蔡琴金片子 are a must for those who is keen to listen to some jazz format songs as well as some slower pace songs for the late night.

For those who like the "old songs", there is the 蔡琴 老歌Old songs. For those who wants a very smooth sounding Cd, the "Ji Yi"蔡琴.機遇 Cd will give you a sense of peace when listening. Without knowing it, 40 minutes has passed quicky....

I was surprised at the number of Chai Chin's Cd that I have bought...Even though there are many mainland Chinese singers who produced audiophiles CD, few can compare with 蔡琴 when coming to strong emotion in her songs..being so natural and so smooth..

Friday, December 08, 2006

2006 Hifi summary

December month is coming to end. Everyone is preparing to celebrate Christmas and the coming for the new year.
For me, 2006 has passed very quickly. In term of hifi, I have learnt a great deal with the testing of the various amplifiers. Along the way, I have found my hifi path. I have tried many branded amplfiers as well as some DIY items as well. I used to be active in some of the forum but I have learnt to keep silent so as to avoid "troubles".
Even though hifi is only a hobby, very often there are so much conflicts of interests and "bad mouthing" in the local forum scene that it is wiser to keep silence. This has reflected the low tolerance in differences in views here. In addition, there are occasions when they are the "red eye" & "white eye" treatment from fellow audiophiles reflected an inflated ego..
During the course of 2006, I have learnt the art of silence and keep a sharp focus in my own hifi path. I have enjoyed keeping the amplifiers that I like and selling away those that I can live without. Take for example, there are many who criticise so much on the Marantz 7 but I like it!

In the end, hifi is a personal hobby! One needs to be happy with what one wants..What other people says or feel is their own business.. Be happy!

Thursday, December 07, 2006

National Union 350B Military tubes (for WE124)

These 1940s National Union tubes were made by Western Electric.

Western Electric 350B Military tubes (for WE124)

These are very rare NOS 1940s Western Electric 350B tubes made for military use. I seldom collect tubes. However, with the WE124b, there is a need for me to start searching for these exotic and keep some for future use.
According to Huang Sifu, if you spend 3 hours a day for listening, one can use these tubes for the rest of one's life!
Even though it may appear to be expensive, it is still values for money + very good sound!

Western Electric 124 - Some History

Alot of people has the mis-conception that the Western Electric 124 was made for solely for telephone amplification which was not the complete truth.

According to Huang Sifu, the Western Electric 124 models were made for the US radio stations when the whole US was at a transition from AM to FM stations. As such, the Western Electric 124 was made for the broadcast station usage and meant for audio use first. Later on, with the widespread popularity of the telephone lines, there was a growing demand for telephone broadcast amplification. Owing to the reliability of the Western Electric 124 amplifiers, many tele-comunication began using the 124 for amplication of telephone communication linking the East coast and the West coast. At that time, the price of the We124 was equavalent to the price of three houses, which was expensive.

The Western Electric was produced from the 1940s-1956. The WE124 model was later replaced by the Western Electric license KS16608. For those who long to listen to the Western Electric sound but didn't want to pay too much can opt for the WE KS16608 series as the sound resembles that of the WE124. The only condition is that the set must be fully restored in order for one to enjoy and listen to the sound of the KS16608. I have known a few audiophiles in Hong Kong who own the Western Electric KS16608 and none of them is selling which reflected that it is one of those amplifier that has the potential to escalate in value and the Japanese and Korean have always been on a look out for them as well, especially when the prices of the Western Electric 124 and 142 are on the upward trend...

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Western Electric 124B (after restoration) : )

My pair of Western Electric 124B amplifiers have been carefully cleaned & restored by an experienced overseas Sifu using NOS vintage parts in order to keep its originality and ensure it being able to be restored back to its glorious days of the 1950s.
There are two version of the Western Electric 124 amplifiers namely the Silver version (from circa 1939-41) and the Gray version (from 1942-1955) and 5 types A,B,C,D,E (made for different purpose). The Silver version is more expensive then the Gray with the Silver version being older and rarer with better Mid sound. The disadvantage of the Silver version, on the other hand, is that most of the caps and resistors and output transformer tends to be leaky and "dried" making it neccessary for complete overhaul in order to be able to perform in its optimum. However, complete overhaul will affect the originality and "re-sale" values of the amplifiers. Moreover matching the early version is also a challenge which explain why the high prices. It would be very nice if one could find a nice pair of Silver WE124 but one must be prepared to pay top dollars to get them as most nice WE amplifiers are in Japan now!
Even though the gray version is from the later period, the advanatges of gray version includes the slightly "cheaper" price, in better condition, and is slightly easier to matched them into twin pair having the same alphabet.
According to Alan, an expert in WE, Fishers & Pilot, the differences from 124A to E are from the input section which were made for different commercial objectives. Alan has mentioned that the 124D is not suitable for home hifi use as the gain are too high. I must really thank Alan for bringing me into the world of Western Electric!
The prices of the WE124 amplifiers depended a great deal on the conditions of the amplifiers, its originality and whether it is "matched" pair or not. Besides, the prices will also depend on whether it includes the front input (618C, 170B, 285L,618c, 618B, 618A) and what tubes (WE350 or 6L6) comes with them. I was told that sometimes in order to make it into stereo monoblock, there may be occasions, inevitably, where one unit is WE124a while the other is 124B.
As such, luck often plays an important part in the search for WE124 amplifiers as they are so rare that often "option" is a luxury rather then the norm. This is the reason why it has taken me so much time and pain to find a matched pair & in good working condition. I have seen a few set of WE124 namely We124B & 124c and I have been told by many experience audiophiles that it is near impossible to find WE124 now as the Japanese collectors have bought them all.
Like what they often say, "when there is a will, there is a way". I have bought the WE KS 16608 and tried listening to the the KS16608 in order to see if I really like the sound of these amplifiers with strong emphasis on its Mid.
"Owning" the KS16608 has also invited lots of sarcastics remarks by audiophiles in HKG saying that the sound is rubbish, not the REAL Western electric etc..which I must say was quite discouraging as many tend to have a very biased mindset. However, I know that the KS16608 could not be so bad (being the decendent of the WE124) and after I am sure that I like the sound of the WE KS16608, I have to deliberate again for a long time before finally making the descion to take the "jump" into the world of Western Electric.
In order to be able to afford these WE124B, I have to cut love the Radio craftsmen C500a and the Fishers 400CX, Mcintosh MC240 in order to free up some funds for the quest of the Western Electric dream. These pair of amplifiers have costs me my holiday or another unit of vintage watch.
Next Week, I will need to fly overseas to "collect" the amplifiers which is quite hard work but rewarding. After so many months of trying, asking, buying, listening, selling, and then buying again, I have found my own hifi direction which is the true advice from Alan. In the end, I think I would go for Quality rather then Quantities as I have never intended to be a "collector" of vintage amplifiers owing to space constraints. In the end, I would most probably keep the Leak 12.1, Western Electric 124B, and if I am able to sell my Pye Mozart HF10 & Mcintosh MC240, I may search for the Brook 12A which is also a perfect match for my Western Electric 755a speakers..
The dream of Leak 12.1, WE124 plus Brook 12A ..will really make my world, like what Louis Armstrong will sing: "what a wonderful world"!

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Tannoy Cantebury going home to Singapore

My Tannoy Cantebury is on its way home to Singapore. Since this is a pair of vintage speakers, special care has to be taken to ensure that it is best pack...

Monday, December 04, 2006

Western Electric 124b (before restoration)

After many months of continuous searching, I have finally managed to find a matched pair of Western Electric 124b. It is currently under cleaning and restoration by an experience Sifu. I am hoping to have this lovely amp before Christmas. According to the 梁文光 Sifu, the input 如果有 輸入的 618a牛或放大謄,會太高 gain ,因此最好要抽起. Thus, rather then spending addition HKD$10,000 on the 618, have decided not to have the 618 input, which was meant for microphone input use and save the $$ for serching of good tubes for the amplifiers.
In the mean time, I am still busying packing and getting ready to move to a new apartment as well as streamlining my collection to a minimum for ease of moving. Following the advice from my good friend Lee in KL Malaysia, I have decided to let go my Pye Mozart as well : ) 聽過就可以了, 無須事事擁抱 ha ha
For detail review on other Western Electric 124B, please see an article written by a famous Sifu in Hong Kong:

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Year End stock take

2006 has been a very eventful and happening year with the trying of many interesting amplifiers and speakers. With the need to move to a new apartment by the end of the December 06, I will have to let go some of my much loved amplifiers and continue my streamlining exercise as my new aprartment has much more furnatures which limit my ability to store more amplifiers.
For year end stock take, my system has been streamlined to:

Singapore's set :
  • Western Electric KS16608 + Marantz 7 + LS3/5a 15 ohms (while belly)
  • I will shipped my Vintage Tannoy Cantebury back to Singapore this Tuesday by air cargo

Hong Kong

  • Bed room : Pye Mozart HF10 mono block + Phass Fullrange speakers
  • Hong Kong's Living room :
  • Leak 12.1 or WE 124+ Western Electric 755a + Fisher 50C
  • KLH 8 radio + KLH 13

Sold items : Mcintosh MC240, Quad II, Fisher 400CX, Radio Craftsmen C500a

Sometimes, I realy envy my friend John who has a permanent home that could be used to stores all the wonderful vintage amplifiers. He is very close to complele his hunt for the entire Leak collection!

For me, Less is More now..