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    Made In The U.S.A.

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    jimmeq

    Posts : 15
    Join date : 2017-02-24

    Made In The U.S.A.

    Post by jimmeq on Tue Mar 27, 2018 4:39 pm

    I've been on this kick* to buy as local as I can and when possible, made in the U.S.A. (I've been thinking as a nation, we shot ourselves in the foot with less expensive goods from ahem; China. Sadly, even though it is perfectly capable of making quality goods, it gets overshadowed by the cheap stuff.)

    Since building my VTA ST-120 I have been assembling an all analog sound system from components that were manufactured in the U.S.A.  While I know some of the components used are from off shore locations, the manufacturing was done here in the States. It has been a fun venture and has certainly opened my eyes to the differences in the quality of manufacturing from "back in the day" to today. It appears that the old school manufacturers were more concerned about offering a good, quality product vs. the "only numbers matter" school of thought that pervades today.

    Beginning with my VTA ST-120 (Stephentown, NY 2017) I have since added:
    Empire 398 turntable (Garden City, NY 1962)
    Grado Prestige Gold 2 cartridge (Brooklyn, NY 2018)
    Soundscraftsman PE2217 Preamp / EQ (Los Angles, CA '80's)
    Schitt Mani phonostage (Valencia, CA 2018)
    Polk Audio SDA-2A speakers (Baltimore, MD 1989)



    * Actually have been doing this since 2012


    Last edited by jimmeq on Thu Jul 19, 2018 10:38 am; edited 1 time in total
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    Peter W.

    Posts : 796
    Join date : 2016-08-07
    Location : Melrose Park, PA

    Re: Made In The U.S.A.

    Post by Peter W. on Wed Mar 28, 2018 7:25 am

    Interesting, and congratulations!

    At this point in my audio aggregation, I have nothing from China, and only some of the the CD players are from the Pacific Rim (Sony). Systems otherwise include AR, Dynaco, Hafler, Harman-Kardon, Magnepan and Revox (Swiss/German).

    Keep up the good work!


    Dogstar

    Posts : 335
    Join date : 2014-06-23

    Re: Made In The U.S.A.

    Post by Dogstar on Thu Mar 29, 2018 6:55 am

    I'd sure like to hear the Polk Audio SDA-2B speakers. It seems Polk Audio speakers are not thought highly of on this forum and no one seems to express why. I said I have a pair of LSiM 703's that I purchased based on a recommendation from the Polk Audio web site. When I got them I purchased them as 'refurbished' from the Polk Audio EBay site yet I did not see one single flaw visually. And, once broken in, they sound very good in my opinion. They aren't as efficient as the ones Bob Latino praises but for near field listening they produce very clear and neutral acoustics. About the only shortcoming I would say they have is that their low frequency response isn't as low as speakers with larger woofers.

    I've heard many good things about the SDA-2B's that you have and I wish I had heard them when they were out. Would you mind telling me the efficiency of the SDA-2B's? The one thing I've noticed as far as specs go is that many of the highly rated speakers are not very efficient.

    I've considering investing in a Schitt DAC and a digital music server but I'm not sure I'd appreciate the 'improvement' in sound quality I would get over my current CD collection.

    Thanks for your advice and input.
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    Roy

    Posts : 178
    Join date : 2018-01-14
    Location : Netherlands, Europe

    Re: Made In The U.S.A.

    Post by Roy on Thu Mar 29, 2018 7:43 am

    Before going for something Schitt Dogstar have a look at some of these teardowns and measurements can be a bit hit and miss quality wise.

    https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/master-index-for-audio-hardware-reviews.2079/

    All done by a man who has earned his stripes in the industry and without commercial interests involved https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/a-bit-about-your-host.1906/
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    Pillo69

    Posts : 148
    Join date : 2012-04-11
    Location : Granada (España)

    Re: Made In The U.S.A.

    Post by Pillo69 on Thu Mar 29, 2018 10:25 am

    I had some Polk-audio that I had to sell, lack of response in low enough accused.
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    Peter W.

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    Location : Melrose Park, PA

    Re: Made In The U.S.A.

    Post by Peter W. on Thu Mar 29, 2018 1:47 pm

    As to Polk, it is true that 'they don't get no respect' in some circles. The were not made in Boston, had unusual driver arrays, were rather costly for their size and Vilchur, Kloss, Low, Allison, Hofman, Lansing et.al were not involved. Made in Baltimore, by Johns-Hopkins graduates, however.

    They were (and remain) fine speakers, however.
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    cci1492

    Posts : 180
    Join date : 2016-05-09
    Age : 57
    Location : Bergen County NJ

    Re: Made In The U.S.A.

    Post by cci1492 on Thu Mar 29, 2018 7:58 pm

    I'm all for buying American too, but I strongly believe people should be free to choose. My Soundcraftsmen stuff I purchased back in 82 is still working, which blows my little mind whenever I think about that!

    Dogstar

    Posts : 335
    Join date : 2014-06-23

    Re: Made In The U.S.A.

    Post by Dogstar on Fri Mar 30, 2018 1:43 am

    Unfortunately the Polk Audio LSiM 703's are not fabricated here in America.i
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    peterh

    Posts : 967
    Join date : 2012-12-25
    Location : gothenburg, sweden

    Re: Made In The U.S.A.

    Post by peterh on Fri Mar 30, 2018 6:32 am

    It all depends on your location. Myself live in sweden, use "crescendo" speakers ( transmission line made in concrete by Bo hansson), quad tuner ( england), dynaco preamp ( i used to have a
    opus3 / audioproducter , swedish brand), thorens vinyl ( swiss), pioneer cd player ( japan)
    Tubes made in slovakia ( it's an EU country ). I also use some home-made ( sweden) parts
    s.a. buffer amp. And uses a Macmini( China/US) as audacity platform for ripping vinyls.
    Pickup is an ortofone(danish). My poweramp is a VTA-70, parts from US, built in sweden.

    The ability to choose products is a key issue in keeping quality high and price under pressure. One
    could say that it is the inherent spirit of Liberalism as Adam Smith teached us. The day one starts
    to reduce the ability to choose, or start tolls against foreign products we will be loosers. This
    of course depends on us as being well educated and making choices on rational grounds.
    US has been producing ( and is producing) lots of high quality sound equipment, it's the
    buyers that choose if they buy a expensive VTA/AR or a cheap skreaky noname amp. If we as
    customer don't have the education and are missing experience of real music, then we might not
    know on what grounds we should buy our music equipment. Or we might just as well
    spend our money on other interests. "Your mileage will vary" as someone said.

    I'm glad to be accepted in this forum where educated and experienced people actually do
    make decisions made from knowledge and experience. Add to that a desire to learn and
    move the frontiers, based on knowledge.

    Have a nice eastern ( påsk as we say in sweden )

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    Kentley

    Posts : 487
    Join date : 2015-03-06
    Age : 65
    Location : Worcester, MA

    Re: Made In The U.S.A.

    Post by Kentley on Fri Mar 30, 2018 7:31 am

    Words of wisdom from our Swedish brother!
    It's a "good" Friday when we can read such.
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    Peter W.

    Posts : 796
    Join date : 2016-08-07
    Location : Melrose Park, PA

    Re: Made In The U.S.A.

    Post by Peter W. on Fri Mar 30, 2018 7:43 am

    peterh wrote:It all depends on your location. Myself live in sweden, use "crescendo" speakers ( transmission line made in concrete by Bo hansson), quad tuner ( england), dynaco preamp ( i used to have a
    opus3 / audioproducter , swedish brand), thorens vinyl ( swiss), pioneer cd player ( japan)
    Tubes made in slovakia ( it's an EU country ). I also use some home-made ( sweden) parts
    s.a. buffer amp. And uses a Macmini( China/US) as audacity platform for ripping vinyls.
    Pickup is an ortofone(danish). My poweramp is a VTA-70, parts from US, built in sweden.

    The ability to choose products is a key issue in keeping quality high and price under pressure. One
    could say that it is the inherent spirit of Liberalism as Adam Smith teached us.  The day one starts
    to reduce the ability to choose, or start tolls against foreign products we will be loosers. This
    of course depends on us as being well educated and making choices on rational grounds.
    US has been producing ( and is producing) lots of high quality sound equipment, it's the
    buyers that choose if they buy a expensive VTA/AR or a cheap skreaky noname amp. If we as
    customer don't have the education and are missing experience of real music, then we might not
    know on what grounds we should buy our music equipment. Or we might just as well
    spend our money on other interests. "Your mileage will vary" as someone said.

    I'm glad to be accepted in this forum where educated and experienced people actually do
    make decisions made from knowledge and experience. Add to that a desire to learn and
    move the frontiers, based on knowledge.

    Have a nice eastern ( påsk as we say in sweden )


    Agreed fully on principle. But, factors in making such choices should be more inclusive than not. If, by me "saving" US$1 on a package of Chinese underwear of equal quality to a package of American-made underwear, my neighbor loses her job, that is neither a bargain nor a good choice. Note that I did not suffer in any immediate way, and at one level, I made a good choice as I created $1 in discretionary income that I would not have had, that now could go towards something audio. But my neighbor is still out of a job.
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    Peter W.

    Posts : 796
    Join date : 2016-08-07
    Location : Melrose Park, PA

    Re: Made In The U.S.A.

    Post by Peter W. on Fri Mar 30, 2018 8:05 am

    cci1492 wrote:I'm all for buying American too, but I strongly believe people should be free to choose. My Soundcraftsmen stuff I purchased back in 82 is still working, which blows my little mind whenever I think about that!

    I have an itty-bitty SC T100 tuner that has been flooded twice (as in under 3' of water for more than a few hours) and through the dishwasher once. Works like a champ. It sits on my workbench as a signal source.

    We raised our summer house to 8'-6" above grade, from 3'-6". So, (probably) no more flooding. And it is a Hafler DH330 tuner up there (Dynaco electronics) these days.
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    peterh

    Posts : 967
    Join date : 2012-12-25
    Location : gothenburg, sweden

    Re: Made In The U.S.A.

    Post by peterh on Fri Mar 30, 2018 8:28 am

    A lot of "unfair competition" is due to the cheap transports , read cheap OIL. If transports were
    more reasonable, more of local production would be profitable.
    Same goes for cost-of-labor, counties now cheap will increase their salaries and in the long run
    not being able to compete with low labor cost. Cost of producing stuff will be a product of
    raw material and the robotics plus a small amount of human workforce. Being close to the market
    and giving good support will be more important. As an example from cars: cars that work
    as expected will take market share from cars that is cheap. Cars where the local support is good
    will be favored over cars where the spares are sparse and service is bad.

    Of course willingness to buy local is an important parameter.
    Goodyear closed a tyre factory in sweden some years ago. I say "sell your tyres in portugal, i will
    buy from someone else".

    As consumers we have power, the more coordinated and educated we are, the more pressure
    we can give the suppliers. If we don't care we will get the products we ask for !

    The above is of course not intended for this forums participants, it's more a general description
    of the clueless hoards out there that buys cheap sh-t from just about anywhere. We are different :-)

    Have a good eastern, take care of you relatives and relax !
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    cci1492

    Posts : 180
    Join date : 2016-05-09
    Age : 57
    Location : Bergen County NJ

    Re: Made In The U.S.A.

    Post by cci1492 on Fri Mar 30, 2018 10:56 am

    In the 80's I heard a pair of the Polk SDA SRS Reference speakers. They were amazing to say the least. They were properly setup in a listening room at an audio dealer.
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    Roy

    Posts : 178
    Join date : 2018-01-14
    Location : Netherlands, Europe

    Re: Made In The U.S.A.

    Post by Roy on Fri Mar 30, 2018 11:27 am

    I would say the most influential factor is corporate structures.

    Private companies with good products can elect to keep production where they want it.
    Publicly traded companies have the responsibility of maximizing profits for stock holders and will do what they can whenever they can to squeeze the maximum returns for their stockholders while presenting the minimum acceptable value at the maximum acceptable price for their customers..

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y888wVY5hzw interesting viewing material totally unrelated to musical enjoyments ^^


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    deepee99

    Posts : 1993
    Join date : 2012-05-23
    Location : Wallace, Idaho

    FWIW

    Post by deepee99 on Fri Mar 30, 2018 1:06 pm

    In my humble opinion, quality and value trump point of origin. All things being equal, I will buy North American. But find something comparable to a Japanese Technics RS-15xx series or Revox (Swiss) tape deck, or a Swiss-built Thorens turntable, ever built on this continent, I'd love to know about it. Portugal and Italy are turning out some incredibly fine tube and digital gear -- stuff we don't build here. There are a few exceptions, i.e. Schiit Audio, who actually build their stuff here, but it's rare.
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    Roy

    Posts : 178
    Join date : 2018-01-14
    Location : Netherlands, Europe

    Re: Made In The U.S.A.

    Post by Roy on Fri Mar 30, 2018 1:39 pm

    Sorry to say - far as I know Schitt puts pre assembled boards into casings and does some end point soldering and thats it. It is about as made in USA as an episode of the Simpsons ^^
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    kevinmi

    Posts : 77
    Join date : 2009-11-17

    Re: Made In The U.S.A.

    Post by kevinmi on Sat Mar 31, 2018 3:26 pm

    deepee99 wrote:In my humble opinion, quality and value trump point of origin. All things being equal, I will buy North American. But find something comparable to a Japanese Technics RS-15xx series or Revox (Swiss) tape deck, or a Swiss-built Thorens turntable, ever built on this continent, I'd love to know about it. Portugal and Italy are turning out some incredibly fine tube and digital gear -- stuff we don't build here. There are a few exceptions, i.e. Schiit Audio, who actually build their stuff here, but it's rare.

    I have a couple of Oracle turntables (made in Canada) which will give any turntable a run for the money.
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    kevinmi

    Posts : 77
    Join date : 2009-11-17

    Re: Made In The U.S.A.

    Post by kevinmi on Sat Mar 31, 2018 3:29 pm

    Lets not forget about Klipsch Speakers, the Heritage line has been built in Hope, Arkansas since 1947 (holds the Guiness world record for longest running production speaker- the Klipschorn)
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    jfine

    Posts : 164
    Join date : 2017-06-19

    Re: Made In The U.S.A.

    Post by jfine on Sat Mar 31, 2018 3:51 pm

    It's hard to buy pure american, even my JBL L300's from 1975 have LPADS made in japan, the old yellow mylar caps in mexico (replaced those anyways), so really doesn't count does it?


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