What gear have you bought that you knew IMMEDIATELY was a mistake?

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JANDL100

Wammer
Wammer
Dec 5, 2006
18,043
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Forest of Dean, Glos
AKA
Jerry
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
You saw it in the classifieds or on eBay and wanted it real bad. 

You got it home, plumbed it in to your system, played your favourite test track..... and immediate disappointment.

Argh, damn! :(  

You might then have tried to persevere and fettle it in to your system, but nope it's a loser. Back on to the classifieds it goes. 

.... And likely as not, the person you sell it to loves it! It's just a personal thing. 

 
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JANDL100

Wammer
Wammer
Dec 5, 2006
18,043
3,457
173
Forest of Dean, Glos
AKA
Jerry
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
A Primare PRE30 preamp was one for me. 

It must have been literally about 2 seconds of music and I knew I hated it. 

Weirdly, I bought it having previously owned and disliked a Primare 34.2 power amp. But Primare gear looks so cool and gets such good reviews and is liked by so many folks ... I just had to try the brand again! 

 
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JANDL100

Wammer
Wammer
Dec 5, 2006
18,043
3,457
173
Forest of Dean, Glos
AKA
Jerry
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
..... And likely as not, the person you sell it to loves it! It's just a personal thing. 
Turning this thread round, my recent acquisition of an Ayre AX-7e integrated amp has been a huge success. I absolutely love it.  :x

And yet the previous owner didn't get on with it at all, and moved it on to me very rapidly. 🤢

 
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lazycat

Wammer Plus
Wammer Plus
Dec 20, 2007
1,707
1,630
193
Gloucestershire
AKA
simon
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
A Chord 2Qute. Given the praise I somewhat stupidly expected choirs of angels. Oh dear.

And because it cost some money I persevered for far, far longer than I normally would.

My amp dac was/is better. I was glad to be rid of it.

Ergonomically it was crap as well. 

 

oldius

Moderator
Staff member
Dec 30, 2008
6,272
3,285
158
Liverpool
AKA
Geoff
HiFi Trade?
  1. Yes
Beauhorn speakers. I sold them within two weeks having tried multiple amps and multiple positions and rooms. I even invited a friend over, @It Cost How Much!?! who spent hours trying to help me to get them to sound even mediocre. I concluded that a single driver horn is simply not for me: they were all midrange and if you dig da funk, they will not cut it. I know of someone else though that absolutely loves his so, as always, your own ears, in your own system is the only way to travel.

 

oldius

Moderator
Staff member
Dec 30, 2008
6,272
3,285
158
Liverpool
AKA
Geoff
HiFi Trade?
  1. Yes
A Chord 2Qute. Given the praise I somewhat stupidly expected choirs of angels. Oh dear.

And because it cost some money I persevered for far, far longer than I normally would.

My amp dac was/is better. I was glad to be rid of it.

Ergonomically it was crap as well. 
I have never enjoyed the Chord products that I have listened to and that has been a range of DACs and also high end pre and power combinations.

 

toms wait

Wammer
Wammer
May 20, 2015
2,454
1,153
148
lancs
AKA
Greg
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
Nola Boxer speakers, small, shouty, hard and edgy, too much money for awful performance.

The guy who bought them was disappointed as well.

Also Sugden CD21, virtually no user functions and utterly average none descriptive sound.

 
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Jules_S

Are we there yet?
Wammer Plus
Jun 7, 2019
1,722
1,787
183
Southampton
AKA
Jules
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
My biggest disappointment that took a couple of days to realise was a pair of Castle Conway 3 I bought unseen from a dealer. I was looking to replace my much-loved but ageing Castle Harlechs and thought these would do the job nicely, but oh dear, a completely different sound that just didn't work with the rest of the system (and my ears). Got shot of them as soon as I could.

 

Amormusic

Wammer Plus
Wammer Plus
Jul 27, 2018
2,225
1,463
168
UK
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
IPL floorstanding TL speakers.

A couple of years ago - I'd read really good things about them and wanted to hear them, but lacked the balls to build my own, so I bought some ones someone else had built (pretty well to be fair). Put them in the living room and total immediate disappointment!

They didn't stay long.

 
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steve 57

Wammer
Wammer Plus
Dec 7, 2008
989
470
113
east yorks, , UK
AKA
steve
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
Around 2005 I bought a Cyrus cd player, got it home to find the bass was missing 

My lad got it off me to used with some ported loudspeakers with which it sounded slightly impressive... About 8 years ago he bought a matching Cyrus pre, power amp and power supply.. I was shocked how dull it sounded, ( on ns1000s) I gave him my little 20 watt nva amp, he's still using that.. but he did get good money for the cyrus..

 
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rabski

Everything in moderation
Staff member
Dec 2, 2006
32,127
17,480
173
Kettering
AKA
Richard
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
Easy one for me. PMC GB1. I'll give them the benefit of the doubt in that my room at the time was incredibly small, but even so, disappointment is an understatement. No image, no life, no nothing. They always sounded like the music was coming from two boxes that didn't like each other. Either the reviewers were all deaf or my pair were broken. Fortunately they'd just come out and were much sought after, so I didn't lose much.

 

steve 57

Wammer
Wammer Plus
Dec 7, 2008
989
470
113
east yorks, , UK
AKA
steve
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
Beauhorn speakers. I sold them within two weeks having tried multiple amps and multiple positions and rooms. I even invited a friend over, @It Cost How Much!?! who spent hours trying to help me to get them to sound even mediocre. I concluded that a single driver horn is simply not for me: they were all midrange and if you dig da funk, they will not cut it. I know of someone else though that absolutely loves his so, as always, your own ears, in your own system is the only way to travel.
I can understand that, I spent the latter half of the 90s building back horns trying to get decent bass. Then I realised a matching large bass driver was a much better sound

Those beauhorns where advertised in hifi World and I lusted after a pair, part of me wondered how they got decent bass out of a small backhorn (compared to what I was building anyway)

You have now enlightened me. 

 
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hiesteem

peacebro
Wammer
Feb 6, 2019
883
585
98
AKA
Pete
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
Thanks Jerry for this thread . I'm enjoying a lot of lol moments upon reading the comments.

Pair of Linn keilidh loudspeakers. I use the word loudspeakers very loosely. Sounded like standing one end of the Blackwall  tunnel, playing through a megaphone, with the sofa at the other end.

Naim 250, circa 90's. Sounded like a two way radio, driving the Linn Keilidh, through the Blackwall tunnel, through a megaphone. I use the word driving loosely!

Marantz cd 62 se. Sounded like light wave radio, of the type used trying to tune in radio Luxembourg in the early 70's.

 

Jason P

Wammer
Wammer
Aug 7, 2009
898
70
58
Somerset
AKA
Errr...Jason
The DC motor kit and new tonearm that a dealer fitted to my LP12. Ruined it to my ears - it was a lovely standard pre-Cirkus LP12 with an Ittok arm, and I thought that this would be a fabulous upgrade that I could just afford. My dealer had informed me that the Ittok had bearing problems (it didn't) and my Valhalla was likely on the way out, so I got another dealer (of very high end stuff) to install this. Not only did they utterly bodge it but it destroyed everything I loved about the LP12. To say I was disheartened was an understatement, but I couldn't go back as I'd sold the Ittok and armboard. It lasted about 6 months in my system, less and less used, until I moved it on. 

 

Lawrence001

Wammer
Wammer
Jul 21, 2015
3,569
1,247
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London
AKA
Lawrence
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
Most recently for me, a Musical Fidelity A308 integrated. I've been after one at a fair price for years and when one finally came up I went for it, but I ended up going out for a few drinks with the seller and his lovely Japanese wife, it cost me £60 in an Uber to get it home after!

I could hear the grain immediately and it never went away after a few weeks of listening. I managed to sell it for what it cost me and it made me realise how much I like my Storm Audio integrated so it was all worth it in the end to scratch an itch and meet some nice people.

 

StingRay

Legend Wammer
Wammer
Apr 27, 2016
8,821
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148
Suffolk, UK
AKA
Ray
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
Easy one for me. PMC GB1. I'll give them the benefit of the doubt in that my room at the time was incredibly small, but even so, disappointment is an understatement. No image, no life, no nothing. They always sounded like the music was coming from two boxes that didn't like each other. Either the reviewers were all deaf or my pair were broken. Fortunately they'd just come out and were much sought after, so I didn't lose much.
I tried some PMC DB1s at a dealers and could not believe how cold they sounded, they sucked all the life out of the music, Kef LS50s were considerably better IMO.

Nearly bought some Wharfedales but tried some bass guitar music and they turned to jelly, that would have been a big mistake buying them, ended up with some Missions which were fine. 

Reviews are about promoting HiFi not critical testing, so I take them all with a huge pinch of salt, don't bother with them now but 30 years I did get sucked in. Surprised so many people still believe them.

 
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hiesteem

peacebro
Wammer
Feb 6, 2019
883
585
98
AKA
Pete
HiFi Trade?
  1. No
The DC motor kit and new tonearm that a dealer fitted to my LP12. Ruined it to my ears - it was a lovely standard pre-Cirkus LP12 with an Ittok arm, and I thought that this would be a fabulous upgrade that I could just afford. My dealer had informed me that the Ittok had bearing problems (it didn't) and my Valhalla was likely on the way out, so I got another dealer (of very high end stuff) to install this. Not only did they utterly bodge it but it destroyed everything I loved about the LP12. To say I was disheartened was an understatement, but I couldn't go back as I'd sold the Ittok and armboard. It lasted about 6 months in my system, less and less used, until I moved it on. 
I guess it's an easy mistake to make with the lp12, but worth trying. Sorry it didn't work out!