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I am inheriting some TT's & vinyl and I am looking for feedback on the Aesthetix Rhea because I found one cheap on eBay.

67.245.123.137

Posted on January 5, 2017 at 13:54:26
Ron P. Stewart
Audiophile

Posts: 4
Location: NYC
Joined: January 5, 2017
I am inheriting a vinyl collection and two turntables as a family member has recently passed away. I will be getting a collection of 78's, as well as a collection of normal LP's and 45's.

The TT's I am getting are an Linn LP12 with a Lyra Skala cartridge, and a Dual 1019, which has a Shure M78S for use with 78's. I already own a VPI Nomad.

What I would like to do is to have the LP12 and the Dual 1019 connected to my system for LP's and 78's. I would like to get an antique automatic 45 player where I can stack old singles for automatic play just for fun. I will keep my VPI as a backup as I have read that the LP12 can be finicky.

Ideally, I would like a phono preamp with four inputs, but three will suffice, and I have heard good things about the Rhea. That said, I just wanted to check in with /r/audiophile to see what you think about the Rhea and what a good price would be for it.

I have bought on eBay in the past, but only regular consumer grade products, not audiophile electronics. I wanted to hear from you what you think about buying audiophile gear on eBay. It looks like the seller also has some Nordost and Analysis Plus Speaker Cables and Interconnects that I may try to snag as well.

Here is a link to the eBay sale on the Aesthetix Rhea:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Aesthetix-Rhea-Tube-Phono-Stage-Stereo-Preamplifier-World-Class-Stunning-/172471966174?hash=item28282159de:g:wxsAAOSw241YbFuJ

Thanks so much for your help!

 

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RE: I am inheriting some TT's & vinyl and I am looking for feedback on the Aesthetix Rhea because I found one cheap on e, posted on January 5, 2017 at 14:03:36
Sondek
Audiophile

Posts: 2589
Location: Fort Worth
Joined: May 17, 2000
Contributor
  Since:
April 5, 2002
I have no personal experience with the Rhea, but a friend did/does. I had only one opportunity to listen to it and it did sound very, very good. My buddy ultimately ditched it owing to difficulty in finding sufficient quantities of quiet, phono grade 12ax7's. I do not know if his unit had some operational issue, but his complaint was that it tended to eat tubes. They would go noisy after short periods of use. It may be that the Rhea pushes the tubes hard and longevity suffers. With so many really good reissues available now this may not much of a concern anymore.

 

RE: I am inheriting some TT's & vinyl and I am looking for feedback on the Aesthetix Rhea because I found one cheap on e, posted on January 5, 2017 at 14:07:10
fantja
Audiophile

Posts: 9645
Location: Alabama
Joined: September 11, 2010
Welcome! Ron-

at this level of performance, get an audition prior to any purchase.
Aesthetix gear is excellent. Where are you located?

 

RE: I am inheriting some TT's & vinyl and I am looking for feedback on the Aesthetix Rhea because I found one cheap on e, posted on January 5, 2017 at 14:10:29
Ron P. Stewart
Audiophile

Posts: 4
Location: NYC
Joined: January 5, 2017
I am located in New York. Are you suggesting that I audition the actual Rhea that is for sale on eBay or that I go to a showroom to audition a Rhea? Thank you!

 

RE: I am inheriting some TT's & vinyl and I am looking for feedback on the Aesthetix Rhea because I found one cheap on e, posted on January 5, 2017 at 14:26:44
BCR
Audiophile

Posts: 1646
Location: connecticut
Joined: April 7, 2009
Contributor
  Since:
November 16, 2014
I have purchased many audio products on EBAY and never had a problem. I can't comment on the Rhea having never owned one. BTW, I doubt that you will find a phono preamp with that many inputs,so that Rhea seems like a good purchase!

 

RE: I am inheriting some TT's & vinyl and I am looking for feedback on the Aesthetix Rhea because I found one cheap on e, posted on January 5, 2017 at 14:33:48
fantja
Audiophile

Posts: 9645
Location: Alabama
Joined: September 11, 2010
Good Afternoon Ron,

unless you are already familiar w/ Aesthetix gear and its sound, I would certainly get a demo (wether from the eBay seller or your local dealer/retailer). This is a very fine, upscale brand to include tube-rolling. Keep me posted and Happy Listening!

 

RE: I am inheriting some TT's & vinyl and I am looking for feedback on the Aesthetix Rhea because I found one cheap on e, posted on January 5, 2017 at 14:35:38
Ron P. Stewart
Audiophile

Posts: 4
Location: NYC
Joined: January 5, 2017
Yes, good advice, thanks much. The seller mentioned that they have the stock Tubes as well as some NOS tubes available. I'll have to ask about that! Thanks for your help!

 

RE: I am inheriting some TT's & vinyl and I am looking for feedback on the Aesthetix Rhea because I found one cheap on e, posted on January 5, 2017 at 14:39:18
fantja
Audiophile

Posts: 9645
Location: Alabama
Joined: September 11, 2010
My pleasure- Ron.

unless you are independently wealthy (if you are it is fine), I never like reading about Audiophiles losing/wasting monies on gear.

Happy Listening!

 

So you suggest he screw th dealer?, posted on January 5, 2017 at 16:20:34
marc g.
Audiophile

Posts: 2776
Location: New Orleans
Joined: October 14, 1999
Going to a dealer for an audition with the intention of buying elsewhere is wrong.

marc g. - audiophile by day, music lover by night

 

Just a caution..., posted on January 5, 2017 at 16:34:59
kootenay
Audiophile

Posts: 5794
Location: Calgary, Alberta
Joined: October 16, 2007
Contributor
  Since:
April 6, 2008
You may not run into this kind of problem, but our local dealer has to ditched them because their customer service didn't live up to his expectation.



If a thing's worth doing, it's worth doing well
(Proverb)

 

RE: So you suggest he screw th dealer?, posted on January 5, 2017 at 17:37:58
fantja
Audiophile

Posts: 9645
Location: Alabama
Joined: September 11, 2010
Not so fast- perhaps Ron and his dealer can connect on a different piece of gear in the future. There is more than enough business (for each) to go around.

 

I can't believe it hasn't been sold, posted on January 5, 2017 at 18:01:48
Dave Pogue
Audiophile

Posts: 10697
Location: DC Area
Joined: October 9, 2001
Contributor
  Since:
March 18, 2003
That is an unbelievable deal. I own one. The service I've received from Aesthetix (just had my Aesthetix Calypso upgraded to "Signature" status) has been exceptional. If it isn't gone by now, buy it!

 

RE: I am inheriting some TT's & vinyl and I am looking for feedback on the Aesthetix Rhea because I found one cheap on e, posted on January 5, 2017 at 19:12:39
audiobasic2000
Audiophile

Posts: 87
Location: Ontario
Joined: March 24, 2004
Yes, good deal but did anyone notice the shipping charges of $552? nt.

 

Its an auction, posted on January 5, 2017 at 20:15:54
Awe-d-o-file
Manufacturer

Posts: 16490
Location: 100 miles west of DC
Joined: January 10, 2004
Contributor
  Since:
October 31, 2005
unless you have magic powers the final price is unknown



ET

"If at first you don't succeed, keep on sucking till you do suck seed" - Curly Howard 1936

 

RE: I am inheriting some TT's & vinyl and I am looking for feedback on the Aesthetix Rhea because I found one cheap on e, posted on January 6, 2017 at 02:51:15
PAR
Audiophile

Posts: 1784
Location: South London
Joined: April 15, 2013
Contributor
  Since:
January 12, 2014
Do you really need 4 phono inputs ? OK you now have 3 turntables and would like to buy another for stacking 45rpm singles.

You obviously cannot listen to them all simultaneously. In fact you have aready designated one a spare (backup). I will also add a reasonable guess that during any average listening session you will not be using all 4 turntables, flipping from one to another. In fact I am pretty certain that once the novelty has worn off you will find the majority of your listening will be to one turntable only with the odd excursion to either the 78 or 45 'table. Do the discs you are to inherit even meet your tastes in music?

The number of phono amplifiers available with more than 2 inputs is very limited. In fact many have only one (though often switchable from MM to MC). I would therefore suggest that you will find life a lot simpler if you look for a good MM/MC phono amp with fewer inputs and just unplug one turntable and plug in another as and when it takes your fancy. You will hardly ever be listening to all 3 or 4 in one session, betcha.

In any case the 78s may require a specialist phono amp anyway to reproduce them properly due to inconsistent pre-RIAA EQ between different labels.

 

RE: I am inheriting some TT's & vinyl and I am looking for feedback on the Aesthetix Rhea because I found one cheap on e, posted on January 6, 2017 at 03:11:30
BCR
Audiophile

Posts: 1646
Location: connecticut
Joined: April 7, 2009
Contributor
  Since:
November 16, 2014
FYI,Ebay gives the shipping cost from the seller to buyer. The shipping is different depending on where you live. I show a shipping cost of $65.00 to Connecticut,USA. You live in Canada,that's why shipping is so high!

 

RE: I am inheriting some TT's & vinyl and I am looking for feedback on the Aesthetix Rhea because I found one cheap on e, posted on January 6, 2017 at 04:23:52
jperry
Audiophile

Posts: 232
Location: Phx, AZ
Joined: September 11, 2004
Contributor
  Since:
November 9, 2014
The Rhea is a great phono stage and one of few with 3 inputs. You can buy tubes from Aesthetix that will work well and be quiet in the Rhea.

Aesthetix has great customer service. I know because I own a Rhea as well as a Calypso and Atlas.

If the price stays low enough yu should buy it.

 

My error. I thought it was buy-it-now (nt), posted on January 6, 2017 at 06:26:29
Dave Pogue
Audiophile

Posts: 10697
Location: DC Area
Joined: October 9, 2001
Contributor
  Since:
March 18, 2003
nt

 

disagree on endlessly swapping RCA. Just a bad (cheap) idea, posted on January 6, 2017 at 11:04:37
3+4=5
Audiophile

Posts: 77
Location: Midwest
Joined: December 24, 2016
I have thought about trying to reverse the selector switch, so all the inputs go to phono. and the only one former phono goes to line level.
My selector is discrete, so the wires could be changed up.
Then I would have four phono via selector, and one line level
Placing tiny home printed text on the preamp face. LOL

 

RE: I can't believe it hasn't been sold, posted on January 6, 2017 at 11:15:23
fantja
Audiophile

Posts: 9645
Location: Alabama
Joined: September 11, 2010
Excellent point- Dave.
Aesthetix does provide some of the best Customer Service in the industry.

 

RE: My error. I thought it was buy-it-now (nt), posted on January 6, 2017 at 13:09:14
Awe-d-o-file
Manufacturer

Posts: 16490
Location: 100 miles west of DC
Joined: January 10, 2004
Contributor
  Since:
October 31, 2005
I remember I was the first to post on how eBay was really not an auction site anymore back in about 2012 or so. No veryone assumes buy it now. Change is thinly constant.


ET

"If at first you don't succeed, keep on sucking till you do suck seed" - Curly Howard 1936

 

Did you buy it?, posted on January 7, 2017 at 04:37:43
hawkmoon
Audiophile

Posts: 354
Location: cleveland
Joined: July 11, 2003
Nt

 

RE: Did you buy it?, posted on January 7, 2017 at 05:46:17
The Dill
Audiophile

Posts: 1002
Location: Portland, Oregon
Joined: July 1, 2004
Contributor
  Since:
February 3, 2016
The specific item that the OP refers to is an eBay auction that ends on 1/13/2017.

 

Isn't all this discussion premature?, posted on January 7, 2017 at 07:56:50
hawkmoon
Audiophile

Posts: 354
Location: cleveland
Joined: July 11, 2003
Item on eBay that isn't even bought?

 

RE: Isn't all this discussion premature?, posted on January 7, 2017 at 08:38:56
Jack G
Audiophile

Posts: 8777
Joined: September 24, 1999
I think the whole idea is that he's asking if he *should* buy it.
Jack

 

RE: Isn't all this discussion premature?, posted on January 7, 2017 at 10:54:45
Ron P. Stewart
Audiophile

Posts: 4
Location: NYC
Joined: January 5, 2017
Yes, and thanks to all for helping me decide! I think I will go for it.

 

RE: Isn't all this discussion premature?, posted on January 7, 2017 at 18:19:31
Awe-d-o-file
Manufacturer

Posts: 16490
Location: 100 miles west of DC
Joined: January 10, 2004
Contributor
  Since:
October 31, 2005
They are $7K new now. Be prepared for it to go for at least 2-3 thousand. One sold for 3200 last June on eBay.


ET

"If at first you don't succeed, keep on sucking till you do suck seed" - Curly Howard 1936

 

RE: Isn't all this discussion premature?, posted on January 8, 2017 at 13:41:03
raya
Industry Professional

Posts: 237
Joined: May 9, 2014
Yes, for 700 I'd go for it too but it's a bidding war and will go much, much higher.

 

I owned the Rhea. It was OK....., posted on January 11, 2017 at 19:55:39
AbeCollins
Audiophile

Posts: 27441
Location: USA
Joined: June 22, 2001
Contributor
  Since:
February 2, 2002
The Rhea is a supremely versatile phono. I liked it initially and thought very highly of it. But after a while and with more listening over time I thought it was a tad bit dark sounding. I liked the fact that it handled multiple inputs and each could be selected and set independently (gain / loading) via it's remote control. However, I always felt that it sounded a little dark.

I experienced some other phonos over the years that sounded better, or at least much more to my liking. These included the Rogue Ares which was my favorite tube phono at $2000 MSRP. It handles MM and uses an internal CineMag step-up-Transformer for MC.

In SS phono preamps I liked the Graham Slee Era Gold V a lot but it handles MM cartridges only. But coupled with a good step-up-transformer (SUT) like the ones available from Bob's Devices, it was incredible.

In a high-value and versatile phono I actually prefer the modest PS Audio GCPH over the Rhea on sonics. When I downsized my system I went back to the PS Audio GCPH. I had owned one many many years ago and re-purchased one when I downsized.

Good luck!

My Rhea is toward the right. This was my room and setup many years ago.

A closer view of the Rhea

The modest PS Audio GCPH in the same rack




 

RE: I owned the Rhea. It was OK....., posted on January 14, 2017 at 04:45:31
raya
Industry Professional

Posts: 237
Joined: May 9, 2014
It sold for $1695.00.

 

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