LIVE, LAUGH, AND LEARN... welcome to the co.

True Audiophiles make their own cables! Mogami x Cardas x Calrad wire

Ok... well maybe not... but as a true audiophile freak and hobbyist i thought hell why not learn how to solder and stuff like that so here is my first attempt at making my own audiophile quality wires for my new GRADO headphones..

now why make your own cables?
1) because Radio Shack sucks!
2) because true audiophile quality cables can be very expensive
3) well DIY is so "chic" right now... :P
5) its fun to do and have that satisfaction that you made your own cables
6) well why the hell not...

parts used

MOGAMI w2528 wire
CALRAD stereo 3.5 plug
CALRAD mono 3.5 plug
CARDAS QUAD EUTECTIC SOLDER ( this stuff is seriously amazing... low melting point, easy easy easy to work with.... i wish i just had an unltd supply of this stuff)

way more info on diy audio stuff after the jump!

Now there are tons of great resources here on the web to get you started on little DIY projects like this... youtube has great videos , such as other websites like head-fi.... and personal websites/blogs such as mike from DIY MIKE...

assistance in my whole process was provided by the intrawebz very own DIY MIKE... thank you again mike for your awesome site and SUPER AMAZING personal help!

after a few more practice wires and or combinations of wires (such as pure copper stranded vampire wires or silver plated copper wires) i think my next project will be an amplifier at some point. a Millet "starving student" amp ? or even a PPA 2 amp?

now if i could just read schematics id be golden!

HERE IS A PIC OF A COMPLETED MILLET "STARVING STUDENT" HYBRID AMP... aka... millet mini amp.... or budget millet amp.....




Sweet for Ma Dukes

There’s nothing I can say that hasn’t already been said about J Dilla and the influence his life and work have had on a whole generation of beatsmiths, artists, and lovers of music. It’s a shame it took so long for him to get his propers but 3 years later the hip-hop community has shown time and again that they’ve been able to create positivity out of tragedy in their celebration of him.

This past Sunday, musicians and fans paid tribute to Jay (and his mother Maureen Yancey a.k.a. Ma Dukes) at the Suite for Ma Dukes, part of the Timeless Concert Series by VTech in association with Mochilla and ArtDontSleep. L.A’s hip-hop intelligentsia showed up in their funky Sunday best. The crowd consisted of a veritable who’s who of the L.A. hip-hop scene including folks from the Stonesthrow, Plug Research, Ubiquity, and Poo-Bah camps (to name a few). Houseshoes and J-Rocc, both close friends of Jay, got the party started with a couple of great Dilla-inspired DJ sets…

Arranged, directed, and conducted by Miguel Atwood-Ferguson, the Suite for Ma Dukes was performed by a 40-piece orchestra and a host of surprise guests. The first half was essentially a live performance of their E.P. which includes beautiful renditions of Find A Way, Fall In Love, and Nag Champa. The second set was closer to the classic hip hop show format, which I sensed was a welcome change from many in the crowd that were itching to throw their hands up and say “ohhh!” Some highlights: Karriem Riggins (!) nailed Dilla’s trademark delayed claps on the drums. Ma Dukes, Illa J (current torch-bearer of the Yancey family musical legacy), and Common (in a tux, probably from the Oscar’s a few miles away) came out to share some words with the crowd. Amp Fiddler, Dwele, and Bilal KILLED it on vocals. And for the finale, the orchestra broke into “Stakes is High.” I joked with a friend that De La would come out… then, sure enough, Posdnuos ran out on stage yellin’ “THE INSTAMATIC FOCAL POINT BRINGIN’ DAMAGE TO YA BURROUGHS…” and of course the place went off. As if that weren’t enough, Talib Kweli came out and handled verse 2. Yeah… it was nuts.

For the last few years, there has been something of a musical renaissance in the eastside of L.A. Though this movement is hard to classify because it draws from so many different sounds (genres are sooo 2003), you don’t have to listen hard to hear Dilla’s influence. Those that frequent the Low End Theory and the summertime Do-Over know what’s up. For the uninitiated, the From L.A. With Love compilation and Flying Lotus’ Los Angeles and L.A. E.P.’s are a good primer. This community has coalesced in large part during their mourning/celebration of Dilla and this event felt like the culmination of that.

Like most Angelenos, I have a love/hate relationship with this city. On Sunday night it was all love.

Here are some songs that were played that night including one of my favorite Dilla samples, Saudade Vem Correndo, but please PLEASE cop the EP (available now on iTunes) and DVD (when it drops) by Mochilla. Trust me.

Miguel Atwood-Ferguson & Carlos Nino - Find A Way
Stan Getz & Luis Bonfa - Saudade Vem Correndo


RIDE REVIEWZ: Collective Co @ AMGEN Tour of California 2009

two of us from the collective co. and some friends went out to support lance armstrong on his return to pro cycling and the tour of california... check it out...

yes this was my first attempt at video editing and recording... not bad from an iphone and standard mac software right?

camera: apple iphone 3g
recording software: cycorder
editing computer: apple macbook 2.4 core 2 duo
editing software: imovie / ilife 09 / itunes


All Your Base Are Belong To APPLE!

i may be late on this.. but this pic is so awesome i just had to add it here.... i think most of us here at the collective are also slaves as well!!!

im sure most colleges around america look like this ... so next time you are sitting in soc 101.. take a look around... and see if your face just gets a little more tanned from those little glowing APPLES...




Filipino War Veterans From WWII Getting The Credit They're Due

If you live in San Diego (especially South East SD), there is no hiding the Filipino presence in our armed forces, but some might not be aware that this has been the case all the way back to WWII. In WWII, veterans from the Philippines helped the U.S. defeat Japan in the Pacific. These veterans were promised citizenship and veterans benefits for their aid but Harry Truman (in 1956) signed a law stripping these brave men (and their families) of their citizenship and thus their benefits.

Though some were able to fight for their citizenship back, it wasn't until this year (over 50 years later) that they have received any money or compensation for their bravery. Written into the Stimulus Bill is $198 million for these old fighters from the Philippines (I bet they are throwing some great parties to celebrate!). Although the actual pay off is relatively insignificant ($15K for citizens, $9k for non-citizens) compared to the hardships they have faced in the past half decade, what's almost more important than the money is the long overdue credit and acknowledgment for the brave people of the Philippines who helped Americans in their time of need.

While many are arguing that this has nothing to do with stimulus and shouldn't be in the bill, I might argue the opposite. While it is important to stimulate the American economy at this time, it is equally important to stimulate the American spirit, whether that spirit be black, brown, white, orange, green, or rainbow.


Sony Releases New Stupid Piece Of Shit

Sony Releases New Stupid Piece Of Shit That Doesn't Fucking Work

old... but good... and still exactly how i feel sometimes when marketing hype just takes over ....


Anthony Bourdain in the Philippines... finally!

The much anticipated No Reservations: Philippines episode aired on the Travel Channel not too long ago. Sadly, I wasn't up on it and missed it (I don't watch much TV and although No Reservations is definitely a show I'd sit down for-- hell, Anthony Bourdain has one of my dream jobs-- I don't watch enough TV to know when it's on). A few days after it aired, however, it became evident that I was the only Pilipino with a late pass.

Still suffering from being bit haaard by the travel bug, I surfed the net today for a travel-fix. Seriously, this guy has THE best job e-v-e-r, IMO. Sh!t, what I'd give to say, "I write, I travel, I eat and I'm hungry for more" whenever people ask what I do for a living.

So anyway, I plop down with a cozy blanket and a cup of chamomile citrus tea and finally find a forum that's posted the episode in it's entirety. I've always wondered why it's taken so long for Mr. Bourdain to make his way to the homeland, seeing that he's basically been to every country nearby. I was really curious to see what dishes would be featured on the show. I know Bourdain is no stranger to "questionable" foods that the average eater wouldn't dare touch with a ten foot pole, but there's long been a stigma towards traditional Pilipino cuisine. Even Americanized Pilipino spots are frequented mostly by Pilipinos unlike, for example, Chinese or Thai restaurants.

That being said, I was impressed with how things went... and happy to see that balut didn't make it onto the table. Not that I've got anything against a chicken embryo appetizer, it's just that that would have been a major cop out considering the diverse food that different regions of the Philippines have to offer-- delicacies that most people don't even realize are actually traditional Pilipino dishes.

Aside from the mouth-watering menu, the side story was pretty interesting as well. Bourdain finally decided to hit up the islands thanks to a young Pilipino-American named Augusto. Sprinkled in between shrimp, crab and bone marrow are Augusto's stories of the difficulties of being raised Pilipino-American, which ties in really well with Bourdain's number one question (as well as mine): "why is it that Pilipino cuisine is a blank page; why doesn't it have a higher profile in the states?"

I've had this conversation numerous times and it was somewhat... I don't know... validating, I guess, to see the issue being addressed on the Travel Channel. Friends and I have always concluded that the reason is because Pilipino food is just ugly. We're not big on garnishing our dishes; we don't add chives for a splash of color; and we don't really know how to describe the food in a very appetizing way (at one point, one of Bourdain's food guides said, "here's a gelatinous rubbery skin dish" [srsly? lol]). It's just not a good look. It's damn good, but definitely not good looking.

However, after watching the episode I realized there's probably more to it. Pilipinos easily assimilate to whatever culture is around them and a lot of the time disregard their roots in order to fit in. Although that can be a good and bad thing, simply put it's just something we do and do well. At times we're so disconnected-- how could we possibly introduce and successfully promote a foreign cuisine in the US when in most cases it's foreign to us ("us" being Pilipino-Americans) as well?

Anyway, it was a good episode, but definitely DID NOT scratch my travel itch-- instead I've just moved the Philippines up on my list; not only for the food, but also for the culture I've been missing out on.

Now go out and find some good eats!


GRADO LABS PS1000: Dear John, Stop Ur Killin Me!

Dear John Grado.

As a kind note from a now sick and helpless audiophile... please ... please stop making things that just make me want to send every little dime i have to you.. with the announcement of your greatst work yet... the GRADO LABS PS1000 series headphones have caused me nothing but anxiety, pain, and suffering...for i cant sleep eat or think without knowing that i am existing on this planet without these headphones playing back my favorite music tracks.... please accept this open letter and realize that i am just a humble and poor ol fool already smitten by the fact that (a) these are the best of the best you make (b) limited edition [and yes a true hypebeast will love anything with limited edition on it and (c) well just simply a great GRADO headphone...

oh and btw.. these babies will set you back just $1695

more after the jump!

ok lets back things up here... first off...i would go as far as saying that i am now a true "self-proclaimed" hobbyist audiophile...

(as wiki would define as: An audiophile, from Latin audio[1] "I hear" and Greek philos[2] "loving," is an audio reproduction enthusiast, who typically listens to music on high-end audio electronics.)

the thing is ... yes i do have a thing for true hi fidelity.. however... in particular headphones... and even more specific ... a little factory inside brooklyn.. which makes (in my opinion and many others out there) the world's best CANS!!!! and when i say cans i mean audiophile lingo ... not drunk fraternity college boy party time cans.... however those kinda cans are also good :)

Grado has been manufacturing audiophile quality headphones for many decades... with a few releases of limited edition and special edition headphones released to the public.. some models attaining legendary status among the hi-fi crowd, and with the release of these new headphones im sure they will easily become just as popular

Review from - Zanth from Head-fi

Never one to stop innovating, Grado has set out to create a new flagship and it is these new headphones, the PS1000's, as I hear it, are the very best headphone Grado Labs has ever produced...................


The PS1000's are finally, (and for those that upgrade often or think the grass is always greener, they know what I mean by finally), finally, the first set of headphones that would motivate me to sell all the rest, because these PS1000s do it all and do it as flawlessly as I've yet experienced. They give me everything that I've been searching for in headphones and do it in such a way that I can honestly say I'm not hoping for anything more. If more can ever be given, GREAT! But I've stopped looking. I've stopped thinking that a single phone can't do it all. Hyperbole be damned, this phone had me at hello.

Please visit for the full review.

also they brought back the awesome wooden boxes !!! i must cop for my grado modded headphones.


Valentine's Day FAILZ

(image cred:

The ¢ollective is a little late on this, but hope you all had a blissful saint valentine's / singles awareness day!

So the other day, I came across this. Perhaps it's just the womyn in me, but for a moment my jaw dropped because, of course, it had to be a woman in the product detail photos.



A Kid Tells You How WWII Really Went Down...

gotta love the kids!


yes, that outfit makes you look fat

yeah you...america. this is why you're fat features audience-generated photos of some of this nation's most coveted and creative treats.

a few of my own personal favorites:

a tantalizing donut sprinkled with succulent bacon bits

a crispy french-fry encased sausage on a stick

and agent mike's personal favorite, the krispy kreme (TM) bacon cheeseburger

**in the works, a collective co-sponsored 'this is why you're fat' potluck. we mean business. (polysaturated fats, velveeta, high fructose corn syrup, bacon, deep fried __________, donuts of all varieties, white carbohydrates, potatoes, any filipino dish, are all encouraged). details coming soon.