I happened across a husband-and-wife team who build a variety of beautiful LP storage racks and was so impressed with their work that I desired to share my find with TAS readers. The racks come in rural Ohio by Jason and Brit Prather. These products range from a simple “now playing” single-LP stand or wall ledge to a full-blown cabinet that stores and displays up to 480 LPs. Prices range between $20 to $897 with most models under $150. What all the E&T audio rack have in common is fine woodworking, natural materials (including copper bars that retain the LPs in place), as well as a design that makes functionality elegant. Because all the racks are designed to order, you may have your selection of wood and materials. Walnut, cherry, maple, and oak can be found in a selection of stain colors.
I prefered a Signature series dual rack that holds 60-80 LPs ($100). Needless to say, that’s not my entire collection, but I apply it quick access to albums in heavy rotation. I like the cabability to scan through the albums and find out the complete covers, record-store style, rather than turning my head sideways and squinting in the LP jackets’ spines. The Prathers turn this style in one, two, or three bays. Their top model, Morad ($875), combines a triple-bay arrangement with conventional storage below for any total capacity of 480 records.
The Prather Design website has photos of Jason and Brit Prather within their workshop building the racks one-by-one manually. The 2 of these run the whole business, including web development, marketing, photography, managing orders, packing, shipping, and accounting. They are saying on their website: “Our small town ethics of honesty, effort, humility, and craftsmanship are elements we hope to convey to the customers.” Plus it was indeed gratifying to find out their beautifully crafted record rack in my listening room, and know that it was hand-crafted in a small shop as opposed to churned out by an anonymous Chinese factory.
Whether it’s called an entertainment center, HiFi console, or A/V cabinet, specialized furniture designed to hold audio/video components can represent a substantial investment. Prior to making any purchase, here are some important facts to consider: Will you be placing your HiFi on the furniture? If so, the piece should be able to accommodate the HiFi’s width and support its weight. The number of and what type of components do you wish to store? Center channel speakers and sound bars usually need wider compartments than a receiver or Blu-ray player. A higher-end A/V receiver can need a deeper compartment compared to a mid-line receiver.
Where will the furniture be based in the room, and how much space could it have? If you appreciate your HiFi in a corner, there were created cabinets angled to match snugly into that space.
What’s the décor of the room? If your family area is mid-century modern, then the cabinet with Federalist molding and pediments might look out of place. Conversely, should your home has a classic look, a brushed steel frame stand may appear too modern.
HiFi cabinets can have open compartments, closed compartment (with either solid or glass-panel doors), media drawers, and more. There are small cabinets for any simple system with Topping NX4 DSD, and larger cabinets for multi-component home theater systems with large HiFis. Modular cabinets can be easily customized to meet your needs. The Salamander Designs Synergy System, for example, enables you to add a turntable tray, extra shelves, a media drawer, change the type of feet, and much more.
Hide your audio gear in a closet or utility room – Want to maintain your audio gear out of sight? Utility-style audio racks feature open shelving or rack mounts. But most audio cabinets and racks are furniture designed to house your gear.
Topping NX4 DSD component rack. Audio component racks will make efficient use of storage area. Things to look for. A classic corner cupboard may seem to produce a good A/V cabinet, but without major modifications, it probably isn’t. Here are some key features to search for in purpose-build entertainment furniture:
Passive ventilation – electronic components generate heat, and without ventilation that trapped heat can seriously affect your gear’s performance. Search for openings towards the bottom, in the shelving, and at the back of the cabinet to allow free-flowing air.
Wire channels – If you need to connect your receiver on the middle ycqolf for the Blu-ray player on the lower shelf, it’s essential to get access to your cables. Try to find openings at the back of shelves, portals in back panels, and notches in the back of side supports.
Tempered glass door panels – For simple storage, solid door panel may be fine. But if you need to control your gear remotely, you should search for a door that allows IR signals to pass without interference. Such panel doors often feature smoked or tinted glass to discretely hide your components.
Removable back panels – Entertainment furniture features back panels that are really easy to remove for quick access. These panels can also have passive ventilation slots, and openings for cables to be run between shelves. Wheels — Built-in wheels provide easy accessibility rear of your cabinet. Of course, you’ll need use of initially set up your gear, but that won’t become the only time. You’ll need access whenever you upgrade or replace a component within your body. Sometimes wires work loose, and you’ll have to start the cabinet back and check connections. Plus, wheels allow it to be very easy to move the furnishings for cleaning.
Should you don’t would like your HiFi relaxing in your cabinet, but don’t (or can’t) mount it for the wall, manufacturers such as BDI make compatible floor-standing HiFi mounts which fit behind and attach to their cabinets. If you are planning to get your HiFi sit on top of your cabinet, you ought to give a safety strap to make sure it doesn’t accidentally tip over. Even when you don’t have small children, securing Shanling TEMPO having a safety strap is a great idea. Wall-mounted shelf systems offer you additional options. This can be a great solution to get a small A/V system, specifically for a wall-mounted HiFi. It lets you store one or two components below your set on wall shelving, keeping floor area open.