Monday, September 10, 2012

Guest Blogger Christine: Electronics Watch!

Tired of just furniture? Lucky for you, I've somehow managed to convince my good friend Christine to periodically contribute her amazing CL finds to Listed District. Enjoy!

Hi! I'm Christine, a designer based in D.C., usually found over at The Exhibit Designer. Ellen asked me to stop by occasionally for the Craigslist Electronics Watch. Like her, my tastes lean to the vintage and inexpensive, and that's what I'll offer up. Am I an expert? No. But I can point you in A direction. And remember: caveat emptor. Today, let's put together a classy-looking stereo set-up on the cheap. Something that sounds better than your laptop.

Straight outta the 1970s, here are a few solid options for budget radio receivers. I love the look of 70s-era receivers—that wood trim, yes. For just a few bills you can pick up a respectable vintage model, the centerpiece of your very own little audio setup (and start of your addiction).

The Pioneer SX-535 is a well-regarded budget model from 1974. Do a quick google for dozens of glowing reviews. An excellent option for $50.  

The price is right for this Sherwood S-7100A—another good budget option. I own the 7200 model from the same "Best Buy" line and it's pretty sweet.

Like both the Pioneer and the Sherwood, the Fisher 295 was built in Japan (though the Fisher and the Sherwood were designed in the U.S. so +1 on that regard). Unlike the other two, there seems to be a dearth of information about this receiver on the internet. From what I can deduce it was one of the last models made before the brand went south and it may or may not be solid. A possibility? Nice looks but with its aura of mystery I can't say if the price is reasonable or not.

Your choice of speakers really depends on your receiver. Check audio forums for advice on good pairings. Like cheeses and wines, some receiver/speaker combos complement each other, and some just don't. With that said, Craigslist left me wanting somewhat in the cheap vintage speaker market. A few options:

Assuming the woofers and tweeters are original, this is a great price for a pair of ADS L620s. I have a slightly older model from this line. Hm, Gaithersburg…? I might have to hop on these myself!

The Boston Acoustics A200s are very highly regarded; the "first no-holds-barred Boston Acoustics," circa late-70s, and beauts with that oak veneer. As a bonus they were built in the U.S., in Peabody, MA. I personally wouldn't pay $290 for these (because I'm cheap)—you may want to try talking the guy down.

Another solid vintage choice—Polks have their super fans. I'm a little unsure about what these really are, though; I'm pretty sure there's no "Monitor 10 Series III." They look like they could be the Monitor 10B, from the late-70s, or possibly the Monitor 10 Series 2 from 1990 (superficially they look the same); either way the price is a bit high—$100 seems to be going.

ghetto blaster
For when you're on the go, naturally.

Next time we'll go hunting for a turntable.

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