With the arrival of my 801 this week I have now reached the end of my portable/transportable journey! thirty three years and more $$ than I care to admit to later and here it is!
I started with waayy back in 1980 a with the first Sony Walkman. Over the years progressed through smaller and smaller versions of their cassette walkman then got their first Discman, from there their first MiniDisc player finally entering the MP3 age with one of their 2G players. From there I got the first gen Itouch then the present gen classic. Amps started at the beginning of this century with one of Roberts Sweet tin amps from Germany, then on the Gary's PAV2 then Jan Meier's remarkable Stepdance which was replaced by Ray's equally remarkable SR71-B. Headphones? To Paraphrase Francis Albert, I have a few, to few to mention.. But I will
My first headphones were the ones that came with the Walkman, I kept going with the headphones that came as standard until buying Sennheiser's famed HD414-3 which lasted me from 1983 until the end of the last century. Then came along AKG's K241, Grado SR60 then AKG K701 (regret so much selling that one!) Denon D5000 and thus onto my LCD2 Rev1's
In ears, oh so many but briefly all the ones that came with the players, Denon's, Ultimate Ears triple.fi10, and all the ones presently in my sig.
And so, now to the end of the road, what you see in the picture below. This is, by far everything I ever wanted from a portable/transportable set up. I had clear goals in mind and now have achieved (finally!) the sound I have longed for since hearing the Sennheiser Orpheus set up at Bristol HiFi show back in the 90's though I feel this actually exceeds that in many ways!
So ladys and gentlemen I present in the amp section ( I feel like the announcer on tubular bells!) the Analog Squared Paper TU-05 SET class A tube amp, source, the HiFiMan HM801(snagged one of the few remaining new ones this week!) and for headphones Final Audio Design's sublime Piano Forte IX horn loaded earphones.
Files are either wav ripped from CD or 24/96
And so there it is. I would have never known all thirty odd years ago at college happily listening to cassettes of Depeche Mode, Dexy's midnight Runners, Mahler, Handel or Miles (I had just as an eclectic taste back then as I do now!) that I would end up with what I have now, certainly the player would have been inconceivable back then but to think this child of the solid state generation would be venerating and enjoying a "luddite" tube amp ( and a SET at that!) or listening through horn loaded transducers.. Well, I guess life does actually bring experience!
Sorry for the long ramble but this really does now feel like the end of the road in terms of portable. Now a move back to Europe and a home/speaker based system to look forward to building, just hope it does not take as long...