Favorite Gear Purchase of 2018


That’s a great list though I do not think all of us put together could match @Torq for sheer quantity and quality.





S’okay though, I’m not jealous :wink:


I dont think I can capture everything I bought (not provided to me) but here’s some of it:

Focal Elegia
Focal Elex
B&O Beoplay H9 (for fiancee)
AKG K7XX (for my father)
Audeze Mobius (sold)

Unique Melody ME1 Universal -> CIEM
Campfire Comet (sold)
Massdrop Plus (sold)
Tin Audio T2 (sold)
KZ ZS6 (sold)
TRN V20 (reviewing then giving away)
Hifiman Bolt (gave away)

Ear Buds:
Yincrow X6
Yincrow RW-9
Blue Ever Blue 328R
VE Monk Lite 120 Ohm
VE Monk Lite 40 Ohm (gave away)
Senfer PT10

Amps & Stuff:
MD Cavalli Tube Hybrid
Topping DX7
Monolith THX-AAA Amp/Dac
Cavalli Liquid Spark
Fiio Q1 Mk2
Radsone Earstudio ES100
Loxjie P20
Millet Starving Student Hybrid (DIY)
Classic 47 Amp (DIY)
U-Turn Orbit Plus w/Pre-amp
Raspberry Pi 3+ w/ DAC Hat (AIODE 9018K2M)
Integra CDC 3.4 CD Changer ($10 Goodwill find!)
Teac PD-301 CD Transport (coming today!)

Pioneer XDP-300R
Onkyo DP-S1 (sold)
Hidizs AP80 (on its way)

A million pads
Another million ear tips
too many IEM cases
tons of bulk cable, paracord, and junk.
A partridge in a pear tree.


One last gear purchase for (Nov) 2018… maybe.


Phew, I think my favorite purchase of the year is my Canon SL2 200D!

For audio gear, my HD 800 sits atop of that list! It’s been wonderful to finally have it in my collection.

Though sitting in the number one spot is this Custom Magnum V7 build I bought from a friend, took us some time to get everything up to par but I’m very happy to have in 100% working/cosmetic condition!

I’ve always loved the Grado Sound & Style but the offical products never quite win me over. Always pay to much and get too little in terms of performance. This custom build though is superb! So much so I sold all my other custom Grado Style cans and my official Grados too!


beautiful photo and headphone!


Ha! You guys are crazy. And, I thought I had problems.

The Utopia and LCDi4 are my favorites of the gear purchased this year. LCD-XC, Kaiser 10, RS1e, WA7, H9i, 1000XM3, E8, and HD3 were the other keepers. QC35ii, PX, WH1000XM2, WF1000x, went back to the store. iSine 10 and iSine 20 are on the way.

Okay, so I might have a little problem too.


I think that a lot of us have the same problem to varying degrees. I suppose it is worse if you’re an impulsive buyer (like me). :grin:


I think I need to develop an impulsive selling habit. I’m at the point where I’m completely satisfied with the Utopia, LCDi4, K10u, XM3, and E8. They fill every use case that I have with aplomb: at the office, home, on the go, travel, and quick listen, respectively. I hustle when it comes to purchases but the severe lack of enthusiasm when it comes to selling is revealing. I’ve found myself talking people out of buying in several instances when I didn’t feel like the particular piece of gear really fit what the buyer was looking for.


Haha I have done that too and recommend my potential buyer to get something more affordable for their needs. But I have been on a year end purge right now. My entire living room audio system is for sale. Going to down size that area to hopefully a wireless system and network steamer DAC. Just don’t which yet. Kefs look nice. :slight_smile:

LPs resale value is quite high. I like that. Funds my new purchases.


What a coincidence, that’s me in a nutshell. Except I don’t even list for sale. I like my collection and am pleased with what I have (so far):grin:. The other problem I suppose is being a bit of a hoarder. Only with my audio gear and their boxes and so on. I don’t go skip diving and bring bags of stuff home and have mountains of crap everywhere in my home. Just thought I would make that point. :grinning:.


Seen some of your stuff on AV/exchange. I am not stalking you… Honest.:grin:


Haha. I have much bigger stuff listed locally and may just drop them off at a local shop (Hawthorne Stereo) here to sell for me. If you can find me then, I may be scared.


To be fair, I tend to go in cycles … often acquiring a lot of gear in short periods of time. Very little of that actually sticks around and gets used for long-term music listening - a lot of it is just picked up for review and comparison purposes. And the vast majority of that I have historically not gotten around to actually writing/posting reviews for (it’s hard to justify spending the necessary listening time for a proper review on gear that I don’t really like the sound of).

I do intend to review all of the gear in my list, above, this time. But once that’s done most of it will get sold or given away. At LEAST half the stuff in the “candidate list” above will get sold in the near future. And then there are two turntables not in the list that I want to sell as well (a heavily upgraded latest-version Rega Planar 3 and a Pro-Ject RPM 9.2 EVO) but never seem to get round to listing.


I have the “ugh what a pain to sell this” factor…if it is below$150 I tend to give gear to my family and friends. The rest sits in a box/drawer/shelf and stares at me with “judgemental eyes”. I really need to start cleaning house though…too many collectibles eating up storage.


Paypal makes it pretty easy to sell. Just list it somewhere. Paypal will help you create the invoice and shipping label. I typically just use the USPS Priority mail boxes that fit most things well and shipping is super simple. Otherwise, I always have an Amazon delivery coming so re-use those boxes as much as possible.

And my local USPS near home and near work are both open 24 hours for drop off. They also have a kiosk if you dont want to do Priority Mail or online shipping. Paypal will also let you do media mail and 1st class shipping where USPS.com wont, which is an added benefit.

If I had to stand in-line at the post office, I would be less likely to try to sell. It probably would help my purchases too as I try to buy with used purchase money as much as possible and she also hates clutter.


I’ve had good luck selling on Craig’s List, particularly for heavy items that usually reduce selling prices when shipping is involved. I could have sold my old flat panel TV 10 times in a week.

Not such an educated group of buyers for the most part.

Standard creep warnings apply. Most are normal though.


Yea, I listed my tower speakers, integrated amp and CD players on craigslist. Those things are super heavy so shipping is a pain so CL it is. We do have a local shop that will do consignment for a fee, but I think I am willing to do it if no one knocks in the next couple days before some new furniture arrives. I also like OFFERUP for selling stuff.


I’ve been waiting to chime in with my modest purchases in audio this year. I’m not going to count the VPI Prime Scout turntable - that was a gift from my wife, and would rank as my favorite.

I’m also not going to count wires. Even though the new speaker wires look better than the old ones. And patch cords. Need to connect things, and I’m sure not going to list a “Yukon” interconnect as a favorite.

That brings me to 3 audio purchases this year.

Bedphones for $59

iFi xDSD DAC (yes there will be a review coming) $399

STAX SRM-T1S tube headphone amplifier, This is an old model, but it was brought up to snuff and modified by @spritzer who is Mjölnir Audio. About $1400

and the winner is . . .
Hands down, the STAX amp. It’s brought joy again to my old Stax headphones, and has been wonderful to listen to in an audio chain from my Mac Mini. I have yet to move it downstairs into the main audio system, because I have too frickin’ much stuff in the cabinet and going through the rats-nest of patch cords so I can listen to it streaming AND in analog path is going to be a nightmare. That cabinet has the TV, a Sonos Connect, a power conditioner, the VPI Scout, a pre-amp, a Rotel CD player, a TEAC DAC, and the Wyred4Sound integrated amp. And the soundbar, the Blu-Ray player, the Comcast doohickey, and probably something else. I think I unplugged the Cassette deck.

Hey, I found my vintage 2005 Canon Power-Shot 7.1 megapixel camera the other day, so I might even take some pictures.


I’m replying to myself to list new November acquisitions, and contenders for Favorites of 2018. These are not favorites yet:

  • Loxjie P20 balanced hybrid tube amp: A great way to warm up cold headphones or harsh recordings. The P20 has a bigger impact on tone than the MCTH.
  • Massdrop THX AAA 789 amp: (The first and only time I purchased two amps on one day.) My nickname for the 789 is “The Sand Blaster.” If you’ve seen one of the dozens of car restoration shows on TV, someone brings in a nice car for “a few upgrades.” Then, the shop finds it’s a rusted out hulk and they have to spend $$$$ or buy a donor car to repair it at a more reasonable price. The 789 is brutally clean and honest about flawed sources and headphones. It’ll quickly and fully strip off bad paint and body filler…
  • HiFiMan HE560: This was an impulse buy due to the $250 Thanksgiving sale price, but I absolutely love the sound so far. It really sucks down power, with the 789 amp running on Gain II in the middle (50% of total power). As everyone reports, the build quality is just fair and the $900 initial price was nonsense.
    -Audeze LCD2C: I’d wanted to try these for a while, but thought they were overpriced. Again, they were going for $550 as visually and functionally perfect “B-Stock” for Thanksgiving. They are warm, they rumble, and they are fun. This is another way to soften up harsh recordings (and do best with a clean/thin/analytical amp).