Newbie looking for system suggestions

Category: Amplifiers

Pardon my lack of knowledge, but I just got a Xmas bonus, and am looking to spend it on a hi-fi 2.1 channel system -- starting from scratch!!! If you had around $6-8 thousand to spend, how would you do it? It will be for a 20x 24 room, carpeted, with cathedral ceilings (15 ft high). I mostly listen to vocal jazz, blues, rock, but often get a classical hair and have some very good orchestra + piano recordings.

Again, sorry such a basic question -- I have been doing a lot of reading, but I am still completely overwhelmed and looking for some suggestions to audition!!

By the way, the exposure gear completely blew away Arcam and a Rotel that I had listened to previously (the 1070)
I would personally avoid the Bryston stuff. While I think it is good, I think there are much better alternatives with more air, soundstage, detail, and transparency for the money. Unless you are prepared to go to an amp like Levinson or Boulder, I think the Ayre amps are tough to beat in the solid state arena. I have done A/B comparisons with Ayre vs Bryston time over time on very different systems and my friends and I can always tell which sounds better to us and it's always the Ayre. I would recommend the following for your budget...

Vandersteen 3A Signature speakers ($2200)
Arcam FMJ CD 33 ($1500)
Ayre V-3 ($1100)
Ayre K-5X preamp ($2100)
Speaker wire ($1100)(maybe synergistic or signalcable or some cheaper transparent stuff)

Only use magazines and reviews as a rough guide. I have found, for instance, that some of the components listed as class A in Stereophile are of vastly different sound quality.

Your post of 12/19/05 stated:

Exposure 2010 integrated
Exposure 2010 CD
Verity Taminos speakers

The combination sounded fantastic to me....

If you've done enough research and have listened to at least a couple of systems, then the above system is the one to buy, for the following reason:

YOUR ears and YOUR impressions trump everything else you can read in these forums. If it sounds "fantastic" to you, then that's ALL that matters, ASSUMING you have a solid idea of what you're looking for.

In my case, it was also very helpful to have a person in the business who, over a period of many years, had made many correct predictions about how things would sound to me. In other words, he and I have similar (but not identical) "ears". I know something about high end audio, but not a lot. He DOES know a lot (Duane is the person I'm talking about). He basically provided me with a shortcut to sonic Nirvana. So, if you can find an honest and smart dealer and/or salesperson with ears similar to yours, that would probably be extremely helpful.
advice from mdhoover is great. some just want great sound, buy and stop searching around, others enjoy the hobby, eqpmnt. searching aspect. you are not sure where you fit in untill you jump in. finding a trusted audiophile you share an ear with is a huge help. fwiw, 6-8K will get you a helluva nice system that will last a long time so do not feel rushed. high end used spkrs. are a great way to go. audition new and buy used. you have a big room do not skimp on bottom end, consider this when listening in smaller showrooms. take your time and the deals will find you! 8K will get you a 15K system if you shop patiently.