Champagne Music On Beer Budget

There is a way to great really great music streaming in your home without it costing just under $5,000. (Photo left – Audeze LCD-X)LCD-X-3Q-Left

Sure a $1500 DAC paired with $2000 headphones makes for a pretty good start but you can get 80-85 per cent of the same quality for under $200!51T9W65jR0L._SY355_

The cheapest audiophile quality headphones I know of are Grado 60s (Photo right). They’re available from a few top-end retailers for under $100 and worth every penny.

As for a decent DAC/AMP you can’t go wrong with Fiio which is available online for around $100. I’ve got a couple of them.41o+llXS8cL

Both the Fiio line and the Grado headphones of all types are available from Headphoneshop on Yonge Street south of the 401 and worth the visit. Just keep control of your wallet. I went in a couple of weeks ago to buy a DAC for around $75 (my secret high price was no more than $300) and I came back after a few trips with what I paid for my first car!

839353Of course with equipment this good you’ll want to get a subscription to Spotify for $10 a month which streams CD quality audio or Tidal at $20 a month which streams lossless files more than twice the size.

Regardless of which way you go, you will be treated to some of the best listening you’ve every heard. I’ve setup my downstairs stereo and a second stereo in my upstairs music room to accept streaming audio which I can access using a computer, tablet or smartphone.Side Bronze

My last purchase (or I’m going to start going to meetings…I’m an audiophile and I am helpless upon entering audio stores) is a set of Shure 535 in-ear monitors. I’m still getting used to them but there is a secret to putting them on. Use a mirror. It speeds up the process. They sound amazing.

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About Peter West

I am retired. I'm invested into bike riding, guitar playing, yoga and Ham Radio. I am a former photojournalist, newspaper and magazine editor and public relations practitioner with national, regional and local experience. A long-time member of Toastmasters International and an active Amateur Radio (Ham) operator here in Canada I am taking on new challenges.

One thought on “Champagne Music On Beer Budget

  1. Thanks for the Grado suggestion. Bought a pair of the SR80’s for my birthday present to me and I’m absolutely thrilled with the quality. Using them for both music and ham-related purposes and I’m really impressed with the sound. I’d love to hear the 235’s but couldn’t imagine my ears hearing the difference.

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