Best audio rack under $2k? (or about)

ICTWoody

Junior Member
#1
Hey dudes,

I'm considering a potential upgrade to my audio rack in my main system in 2019. I am currently using an ARI Triple Play rack that Audio Advisor was closing out for a long time and I got for cheap. They were scratch and dents. I filled the legs with sand. It's worked fine... but I feel like my main system deserves better.

I have considered building a rack... but time etc... Another option is to modify this rack. But I don't love the 3 leg design. While it is nice cause it won't rock... the center rear post is kind in the way when hooking up gear from time to time. I considered 1.5" baltic birch shelves and some powder coat. But the cost would probably add up kinda fast.

I'm curious what you guys have seen out in the market that you think looks good. I've considered Solid Steel... they look nice and there are a lot of options at different price points. I would need 4 shelves total... or maybe 3 since I have a currently unused Target Brand wall mount TT shelf I could install above a new rack.

Here's a couple from the web pics of what I'm using.

- Woody

1167695-ari-triple-play-quad-four-shelf-audio-rack.jpg 1572260-ari-triple-play-quad-four-shelf-audio-rack.jpg
 

JohnVF

Administrator
Staff member
#3
Good luck. I've not seen an audio rack in 20 years I'd let in my house. Hence the old George Nelson cabinet and my other systems sitting on credenzas.

Ok, Box Furniture but their prices are ridiculous. What you want would be about $4000 from them. "Audiophile" pricing even affects wood I guess.

My upstairs system sits on one of these. Can't help you if you're after serious vibration control. I'm...not all that worried about it on the gear end, except for my turntables:

Screen Shot 2019-02-11 at 3.37.55 PM.png
 

Redboy

Knobophobe
#4
I've wrestled with this a bit over the years. I'm with @JohnVF -- audio racks are just ugly, for the most part! So I've stuck with my even uglier rack, which my buddy Ron loaned to me about eight years ago...

Woody, I think your DIY rack looks as good or better than 95% of the commercial offerings I've seen!

A couple things I'm intrigued by, though... Paperstone CoverPly could be really neat, I think.

...and Room & Board's Slim collection is really sharp. It's probably not audiophile-approved, but I've seen it in real life. Sexy, it be. And very sturdy. It'd be right at home in your place, Woody!

 

ICTWoody

Junior Member
#5
Thanks for the props, Nate. DIY is still really tempting. The CoverPly is super cool! I hadn't seen that. I used 1/2" Paperstone for the top of my Empire plinth project. Having one of my metal fab guys build me a frame and then doing cool shelving wouldn't be too hard and I could do it for a lot less than a commercial rack. Ugh.... the designer in me wants to do it.

Maybe I'll spend an hour or two putting pencil to paper and see what I can draw up. I did love my orange DIY rack made out of sand filled 2" steel and powder coated. A rack that replaced my current one and had the storage accommodation of my Ikea Lack 6 cube knockoff along the back wall of my listening room would be super Gucci.

Probably 1" or 1.25" steel this time. More George Nelson-esque.

Hmmmm....

- Woody

P.S. My old steel rack where I stole the shelves that turned into my DIY one with the walnut legs.

28926743934_42e006fc5f_k.jpg

I've wrestled with this a bit over the years. I'm with @JohnVF -- audio racks are just ugly, for the most part! So I've stuck with my even uglier rack, which my buddy Ron loaned to me about eight years ago...

Woody, I think your DIY rack looks as good or better than 95% of the commercial offerings I've seen!

A couple things I'm intrigued by, though... Paperstone CoverPly could be really neat, I think.

...and Room & Board's Slim collection is really sharp. It's probably not audiophile-approved, but I've seen it in real life. Sexy, it be. And very sturdy. It'd be right at home in your place, Woody!
 

JohnVF

Administrator
Staff member
#9
Back to my Room & Board suggestion again -- they make this thing in different colors and configs...

Is that deep enough? I remember seeing the first iteration of that shelving and it wasn’t very deep. They sell, or used to sell when I lived down the street from a location, several really nice audio/AV gear credenzas. I didn’t find this out until after I bought my giant old console cabinet. I like to hide my gear when I can.
 

Audionut

Next Round Is On Me
#16
I’d offer to build you one in a heartbeat for that price if I was 1. Not crazy busy at work and 2. Didn’t have a large que of unfinished projects. Woodworking is fun and therapeutic!
 

Prime Minister

Site Owner
Staff member
#19
A friend of mine had one of those. It was quite, shall we say, flexible. It was not a good platform for a turntable at all. He sold it and bought a Critical Mass Soto Voce. Expensive but very nice.
Strange. The ones I have seen have had lots of weight on them. Even the smallest ones in the EVO line are rated at over 200lbs per shelf. The biggest is like 600.
 

Try1256

Very Special Member
#20
Strange. The ones I have seen have had lots of weight on them. Even the smallest ones in the EVO line are rated at over 200lbs per shelf. The biggest is like 600.
His is the only one I have ever seen up close and I thought it a bit strange. I believe his was the SVT, double wide type. If you touched it, it moved.
 
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