HiFI Antique, Paris and Disquantique, Montmarault
I managed to pay a visit to Patrick in his Ali Baba like warehouse, well hidden in a courtyard in the middle of Vitry, a suburb on the south-east of Paris. No sign, just a bland painted steel door and a difficult to find doorbell...This is not the most salubrious part of the "banlieue" hence the discreet location, identified only by being the only business in that courtyard WITHOUT a sign: clever!
Past the door, and this is the first glimpse of the fabulous collection assembled here by Patrick. It is obviously a work in progressm as Patrick buys famous vintage products and restore them to their previous glory and then resell them for a profit...bien sur!
Patrick is so typically French looking, a chain smoker of self rolled cigarettes, that you expect to be sharing a glass of red wine any minute after the initial greetings...but, in good french tradition, this would not happen in the middle of the afternnon! Besides, I am that late because of a long and well lubricated lunch with a good friend of mine.
But back to business, the second item I spotted is a very well preserved Hencot pro tape recorder, a unit I was once desperate to own - I finally bought a Stellavox instead because of the portability.
It was (very well) built in a nearby suburb of Bourg-La-Reine, and was a three head, 19/38cm/s unit in the 70s
Incidently, Supravox has once more gone bust and I doubt it will be revived, but who knows, I might be wrong.
I used to own the turntable!
HiFi Vintage - Christian Grados - Paris
Christian takes great pride in his customer service: during my visit he spent a good half an hour changing a tiny little bulb in an alarm clock radio that was certainly over 40 years old for a customer much older than that, for whom this little piece of history was probably essential to his daily routine.
I spotted a few favourites of mine: turntable from Braun, amplifier and tuner from Dual, Revox B77 tape recorder,a Merlaud amp being taken care of (they were once my client when working for HP...), Ampliton, Esart, two other famous brands in the 70s and many a Marantz and Pioneer, all in perfect condition, ready for you to fall in love again...
Check his new website: www.hifivintage.eu and in the meantime, here are a few photos to feed your dreams: