What to do with pre HDMI, non-vintage stereo receivers?

thesamhill

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I've got maybe 6 stereo receivers with no HDMI (which I assume is why everyone was giving them away). Not special, not vintage, no tubes, just those black units from the 90 and 00s.

I've got one hooked up in the garage, kitchen, and back yard but honestly I should probably just get rid of them because we always just use portable Bluetooth speakers anyway.

I've got one hooked up to my computer that I use to play along to backing tracks but that's the only non- HDMI one that gets much use.

If I can't think of a better use I'll dissect them for components and heat sinks and repurpose the cases, but before I do: any other interesting uses for these?
 

thesamhill

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Yeah. But... Still, they are amplifiers. And when you listen to music through them, it sounds good. Ipso facto flagrante delicto.

I feel like there must be something that can be done with them. Like, somewhere there's a band of high school kids that needs a PA... and there's me with 6 old stereo receivers... and everything will click into place when we realize that ___________.
 

loopfinding

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before my studio and living room were one in the same, i'd have my monitors in my studio and a 2 channel sony, onkyo, etc receiver and some 8" bookshelf speakers (whatever i could find cheap) in my living room.

bluetooth receivers are cheap these days, and bluetooth speakers still suck. a 2 channel receiver with bookshelf speakers sounds infinitely better, and can be had for way less than a premium digital system. i think my last setup cost 75 bucks, i just used an RCA to 3.5mm cable.
 

effzee

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before my studio and living room were one in the same, i'd have my monitors in my studio and a 2 channel sony, onkyo, etc receiver and some 8" bookshelf speakers (whatever i could find cheap) in my living room.

bluetooth receivers are cheap these days, and bluetooth speakers still suck. a 2 channel stereo with bookshelf speakers sounds infinitely better, and can be had for way less than a premium digital system. i think my last setup cost 75 bucks, i just used an RCA to 3.5mm cable.
I've heard you can pick them up at Goodwill for a dime a piece 👍🏼
 

24 track

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An amp is an amp ,no matter what so it doesnt have bluetooth or WiFi big deal,
you wouldnt throw out your gutar amp because you have to use a guitar cable would you?, so whats the difference, really

we have too much of a throw away society , old computers , stereo equiptment , etc , tech is moving faster than an items usefullness and planned redundency just excemplies that fact " dont repair , throw it away .

OK,OK I'll slither under my rock
 

loopfinding

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I've heard you can pick them up at Goodwill for a dime a piece 👍🏼

I understand OP’s cases or taking something to the beach or park or whatever.

But I’ve seen people spend 2-3 times as much as an analog setup for Bluetooth speakers, or an amazon/google thing, or a sound bar, that just stays fixed in the living room and is essentially glorified PC speakers. It’s really perplexing.
 

VintageSG

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You can buy digital streamers that'll connect to a DLNA server to stream your music. That server can be a dedicated unit, such as a Pi or ancient Acer revo with a whufty USB SSD attached. You can configure a service on your computer to do the same. Control it from your phone. Music, Internet radio etc. at your fingertips. I bought an iEast unit, and it's fantastic. Some have Bluetooth too. I stream from my NAS box. It rocks! No more hunting CDs. I ripped them all to the NAS, can look them up in seconds, then revel in being a lazy git :)
Internet radio has a vast choice. I've found myself listening to jazz and classical music I've never heard before as it just doesn't get FM play over here. Marvelous.

You can buy Bluetooth receivers. Some are very good, some less so. Look for AptX/AptX-HD and they're good enough for most things. Cheap ones are more than good enough for the garage. AptX is good enough with FLAC/lossless for casual living room listening.

There are DACs available that support optical, co-ax, USB and HDMI. I'm not familiar with the HDMI transport layer, so shop carefully. I looked at it, and got confused.

There are all-in-one digital home thingies that allow you to utilise your existing amp/receiver.
All they require is a pair of phono sockets free on your amp to connect.

My setup is anachronistic. CD player, FM tuner, streamer + DAC feeding a low power, single-ended valve amp. 1950s meets the 1980s and greets the modern age with glee.
 

micpoc

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You could assemble a 12 channel surround system; just get a rack. It's not like cables are obsolete or anything.
 
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lowatter

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Ironically this thread came up today as I'm going to set up an analog '80s Yamaha 50W stereo amp with matching separate receiver with a pair of 8" Cerwin Vega drivers and cross-overs in custom ported cabinets I built with Pioneer piezo tweeters. The amp is non remote with pot dials.
I'm going to use this setup for a simple and modest home studio I'm setting up so I can get back into recording original music. I'm using a small Bheringer Eurorack UB802 powered mixer that can do most anything I need for recording.
I have a digital 100W Onkyo HDMI receiver in my living room that is non bluetooth capable but I have bluetooth adapter that I may utilize later but really wouldn't use much. I got it locally cheap($50 on CL) and it sounds great but WAY involved in the setup process. I need user friendly in my studio as I'm an idiot. We do use a JBL bluetooth Flip 4 for sitting outside or taking with us on trips etc.
All this said, the fact that you can get older audio amps/receivers cheap these days is a gift to those that appreciate was use can be made of them.
 
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Lies&Distortion

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I have a cheapo Sony or something in my kitchen. It was my dad's, so I kept it for sentimental reasons, plus it works fine. I bought a little Bluetooth radio that plugs into RCA 'aux' input. I use it like a 'PA' with my phone, or just play the radio.
 

Colo Springs E

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before my studio and living room were one in the same, i'd have my monitors in my studio and a 2 channel sony, onkyo, etc receiver and some 8" bookshelf speakers (whatever i could find cheap) in my living room.

bluetooth receivers are cheap these days, and bluetooth speakers still suck. a 2 channel receiver with bookshelf speakers sounds infinitely better, and can be had for way less than a premium digital system. i think my last setup cost 75 bucks, i just used an RCA to 3.5mm cable.

I'll acknowledge my hearing probably isn't what it once was, but I have Sonos speakers that are bluetooth capable, and I think they sound amazing. They certainly suit my purposes, and it's great to have nearly every song in the world available to stream through them. And I can pick them up and carry them outside while working in the yard, etc.
 

thesamhill

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Thanks all!

you wouldnt throw out your gutar amp because you have to use a guitar cable would you?, so whats the difference, really

Well... Yeah, that's what I'm trying to do here, salvage usable old tech :)

Grandparents downsize, people update their houses, whatever, and now there's all these nice sounding stereo amps floating around that don't have the functionality people will pay for or want. ie, video. You can, in fact, get some pretty great sounding receivers at Goodwill for next to nothing.


SO

My question is, can they be hacked and repurposed?

Like you said, they're amps. They sound nice. They just come in these big clunky breakable housings and have digital front ends that I don't want.

So can I get the amps out and turn them into, say, PA systems? Intercoms? Halloween sound effects modules? Alarm clocks for my teenage sleepaholic children?

Or do some other interesting thing with them?
 
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