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  • Re: New Pre/Pro! Can't wait to hook it up.

    nbrowser wrote: »
    Nice upgrade man, something about the sexy look of Marantz electronics...then again I'm biased...SR5010...SR6008...CD6004...yeah biased. Nice stuff for dang sure.

    mmm-hmmm. Marantz kind of cornered the market on aesthetics -- umm -- a while back :)


    (needless to say, none of the above resides here, sadly)

  • Re: Where/who do you trust when buying tubes?

    Yes, he's good and he really (really) knows his stuff. His website is a primary resource for intelligence on vacuum tubes for audio applications.

    As an aside, there's also some good tube lore (and some that's just bizarre) available at FAQs. :)

    "Joe's Tube Lore" is like "The Book of Mormon" of vacuum tube literature ;)

    (with no offense meant to LDS church members!)
  • Re: Picked up a new Stihl chain saw

    FWIW, I have become a fan of premixed 2-cycle fuel. I use any of the two-stroke engines I've owned so infrequently that I cannot keep ahead of the deterioration of fuel when I mix it. At the least, the pre-mixed stuff is sans ethanol -- which has got to help.

    I am sure the unit price is outrageous -- but if you're like me and use (literally) a couple of quarts per year, it's virtually a no-brainer.

    As an aside, up here in "live free or die" NH (and also across the river in "we're bat-**** crazy" VT), it's not hard to find stations that also sell ethanol-free gasoline for ag use. Again, the price is high relative to the swill for cars, but it solves the storage problem (e.g., in portable generators), when storage times can be long but reliability's important.

    I need to get some for my generator again soon, come to think of it...
  • It was on this day in 1954 that the first transistor radio appeared on the market.

    18 October
    Transistors were a big breakthrough in electronics — a new way to amplify signals. They replaced vacuum tubes, which were fragile, slow to warm up, and unreliable. During World War II, there was a big funding push to try to update vacuum tubes, since they were used in radio-controlled bombs but didn't work very well. A team of scientists at Bell Laboratories invented the first transistor technology in 1947. But the announcement didn't make much of an impact because transistors had limited use for everyday consumers — they were used mainly in military technology, telephone switching equipment, and hearing aids.

    Several companies bought licenses from Bell, including Texas Instruments, who was bent on being the first to market with a transistor radio. Radios were mostly big, bulky devices that stayed in one place — usually in the living room — while the whole family gathered around to listen to programming. There were some portable radios made with vacuum tubes, but they were about the size of lunch boxes, they used heavy nonrechargeable batteries, they took a long time to start working while the tubes warmed up, and they were fragile. Texas Instruments was determined to create a radio that was small and portable, and to get it out for the Christmas shopping season. They produced the transistors, and they partnered with the Regency Division of Industrial Development Engineering Associates, who manufactured the actual radios. Their new radio, the Regency TR-1, turned on immediately, weighed half a pound, and could fit in your pocket. It cost $49.95, and more than 100,000 were sold.

    Texas Instruments went on to pursue other projects, but a Japanese company called Tokyo Tsushin Kogyo decided to make transistor radios their main enterprise. They were concerned that their name was too difficult for an American audience to pronounce, so they decided to rebrand themselves with something simpler. They looked up the Latin word for sound, which was sonus. And they liked the term sonny boys — English slang that was used in Japan for exceptionally bright, promising boys. And so the company Sony was born. Soon transistor radios were cheap and prevalent.

    With transistor radios, teenagers were able to listen to music out of their parents' earshot. This made possible the explosion of a new genre of American music: rock and roll.

    "...[Transistors] replaced vacuum tubes, which were fragile, slow to warm up, and unreliable...

    et tu, Garrison?


    I shook my finger at the SE 2A3 amplifiers that were reproducing the above-mentioned from
    VPR (via a Mac MR-67 vacuum tube tuner) and said "Don't you listen to him!"


  • Re: Picked up a new Stihl chain saw

    I loves my little homeowner-grade Stihl. It is indefatigable.

    Our son-in-law, with a nearly 80 acre woodlot, treated himself to a real big-boy Stihl this spring, with a 24 inch bar.

    It is amazing what one can do using the right tools...

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