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  1. #1

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    I just got back into home audio after about a 40 year absence and I'm loving it. My main source is HD streaming (Qobuz, Tidal, and Amazon HD). It's wonderful, especially for listening to jazz.

    My home audio set up is...

    Pass Labs INT 250 integrated amp, Harbeth Super HL + 40th Anniversary Model speakers, Dual Power Supply MSB Discrete DAC, Roon Nucleus music server, Audio Quest Rockett 88 speaker cables and MacKenzie interconnect cables.

    Both big band and small combo jazz sound sublime on this system. Huge, deep, and wide soundstage. It's certainly not a prerequisite to have a big sound system to be a good jazz player but it does supplement and enhance your jazz, blues, or any other genre, listening experience. It's a very effective stress reducer and helps keep me focused and motivated to study jazz.

    Anyone else here into home audio? I don't know if there are enough audiophiles on this forum to justify it, but if there are perhaps another sub-forum could be added for home audio? So, any other audiophiles here?

  2.  

    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by jumpnblues
    I just got back into home audio after about a 40 year absence and I'm loving it. My main source is HD streaming (Qobuz, Tidal, and Amazon HD). It's wonderful, especially for listening to jazz.

    My home audio set up is...

    Pass Labs INT 250 integrated amp, Harbeth Super HL + 40th Anniversary Model speakers, Dual Power Supply MSB Discrete DAC, Roon Nucleus music server, Audio Quest Rockett 88 speaker cables and MacKenzie interconnect cables.

    Both big band and small combo jazz sound sublime on this system. Huge, deep, and wide soundstage. It's certainly not a prerequisite to have a big sound system to be a good jazz player but it does supplement and enhance your jazz, blues, or any other genre, listening experience. It's a very effective stress reducer and helps keep me focused and motivated to study jazz.

    Anyone else here into home audio? I don't know if there are enough audiophiles on this forum to justify it, but if there are perhaps another sub-forum could be added for home audio? So, any other audiophiles here?
    Nice system. I am hardly an advanced audiophile and am quite novice but I am interested in it. I have a simple Onkyo system for surround sound that I run my AudioTechnica turntable into. I am wanting to upgrade the turntable to soon to a U-Turn.

  4. #3

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    This is what I have now. An 80 watt stereo power amp from Ideal Innovations in Canada, a VTL preamp, and a pair of Celestion SL600 speakers. I also have a cheapish Sony CD player, but I usually Bluetooth my iTunes library to the preamp. The convenience and spatial requirements of my setup far outweigh any benefits for me of going full on analogue turntable-ish, etc. One of my considerations was to get hand wired amps. Previous to the power amp that I have now I had two VTL 100 watt monoblocks. I mistakenly thought that the VTLs were fully hand wired. When one crapped out on me it was pretty much toast. VTL even tried to repair it once with very limited success. Luckily I found an aficionado that wanted them. For all I know he was able to repair them or they got stripped for parts. Washed my hands once I helped load them in his car.

    Edit: The prices are out of date, but the power amp was about $2k new, the preamp was about $500 used, and the speakers were about $800 new, FWIW. Not super high end prices.
    Attached Images Attached Images Any Audiophiles/Home Audio People Here?-k-jpg Any Audiophiles/Home Audio People Here?-15xx_0002-jpg Any Audiophiles/Home Audio People Here?-5882325_orig-jpg 
    Last edited by lammie200; 05-11-2020 at 11:34 AM.

  5. #4

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    Which of those 3 streaming services would you say is best. I just got a pair of Focal headphones and I want to get the best sound I can into them.

  6. #5

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    All-Marantz: 3-way speakers w/ 15" woofers. Turntable, CD player, AM/FM radio, 150w per side power amp. Probably older than many of our members. Quite satisfied.

  7. #6

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    2B is the resident Expert!

  8. #7

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    I am building a system now that I hope to find satisfactory for the remainder of my years. I have Focal electra 1038 floorstanders, and I am in the process of purchasing am amplifier for them, which will be a Bryston 4B cubed.
    I only use cd which I convert with a Lavry DA10 converter. I plan to change this to an RME ADI-2 DAC soon for some digital eq and remote control.
    Last edited by wengr; 05-10-2020 at 09:39 PM.

  9. #8

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    Hot Rodded 1960s tube Dynaco Stereo 70 w/4 EL-34's, Lafayette tube preamp, Dynaco Pas Tube Receiver, AR EB101 turntable, modified Boston Acoustic A-100 speakers, Rotel cd player.

  10. #9

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    The Onkyo AVR has the TuneIn Radio internet app built in. It also has a listening mode they call Direct Audio. It turns off all the multi amp multi channel DSP stuff and turns it into a nice stereo amplifier. There’s an AppleTv hidden in there for other streaming services.
    Attached Images Attached Images Any Audiophiles/Home Audio People Here?-df25ca87-64b7-4a79-b9ab-3ee725f8766e-jpg 

  11. #10

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    I've been into audio for about 10 years. My current rig:

    Home
    - Yamaha AS2100 integrated 2 x 100w amp with built in phono. Over 50 lbs!
    - Resonessence Invicta DAC/SD card player (also a breathtaking headphone amp). I scored by getting a demo for around 50% through a combination of Black Friday deals and the fact it was a demo. If I had to reduce my system down to just one item, it would be this plus my Grado GS1000e headphones.
    - Luxman PD151 with Hana cartridge. Again, I got a great deal on a demo.
    - Neat Alpha Iota speakers.
    - Some power conditioning (Nordost Qbase - it works!) and mid-fi cables throughout (not dirt cheap, not crazy expensive).
    - Cheap Salamander rack I've had for almost 10 years and does the job just fine!

    Office
    - Grado GS1000e (great deal on demo...can you see a trend?) plus Resonnessence HP. Sadly, these get used more than my home rig!

    I don't see my current rig changing for many many although if I move to larger place then I may get larger speakers.

  12. #11

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    Ok, so I know ZERO about any of this stuff. I just play music through my Alexa or Google Home. Sometimes thru the TV. Growing up I had the big system with 2 enormous speakers, etc, but that's long gone.

    Can you guys give me an idea what's the minimum you have to spend to have something decent? I dont own any albums except Jack Wilkins "Windows" which is framed, so no need for turntable at this point. Also, our living room is also kitchen area. Large with high ceilings. Does that make much of a difference? I REALLY dont feel like going down this rabbit hole, I'd just like to get something decent and not grind over that last "10%" that people usually try and squeeze out.

    Thanks for ANY help!

  13. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by WilliamScott
    Which of those 3 streaming services would you say is best. I just got a pair of Focal headphones and I want to get the best sound I can into them.
    If I had to pick just one.....probably Qobuz. Not sure why. Maybe it's their layout?

  14. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by DMgolf66
    Ok, so I know ZERO about any of this stuff. I just play music through my Alexa or Google Home. Sometimes thru the TV. Growing up I had the big system with 2 enormous speakers, etc, but that's long gone.

    Can you guys give me an idea what's the minimum you have to spend to have something decent? I dont own any albums except Jack Wilkins "Windows" which is framed, so no need for turntable at this point. Also, our living room is also kitchen area. Large with high ceilings. Does that make much of a difference? I REALLY dont feel like going down this rabbit hole, I'd just like to get something decent and not grind over that last "10%" that people usually try and squeeze out.

    Thanks for ANY help!

    I would say $2500 to $3500 would get you a decent system if you buy the right components. It takes some research.

  15. #14

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    For those interested and wanting to catch up, A Tiny History Of High Fidelity is excellent.

    A Tiny History of High Fidelity, Part 1

    If you are particularly interested in phonograph records, Personal Notes on Record Specifications is excellent.

    Note on Record Specifications

  16. #15

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    Quebec made Totem Dreamcatcher speakers and an Integra amp. Not too expensive but a nice sounding system for apartment living.

  17. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by skykomishone View Post
    2B is the resident Expert!
    What's this? I've been elevated to sexpert status and didn't know it?

    Yeah well, 2b never saw a toobe amp he didn't like. In the 80's, I used to do the Pass amp thing via a company called Threshold. Then in the 90's, I migrated to Plinius amps of New Zealand. All solid state, and year round room heaters via pure Class A of course! But since the late 90's it's been exclusively tube amps, followed up of course with tube preamps. And, for about the past 10 years I've dabbled with solid wood hand built Open Baffle speakers, thanks to having an esteemed woodworker slash audiophile who resides in my corner of the NW. My last featured ribbon tweeters, powered by small 8-12 watt pure Class A not to be mistaken TUBE amplifiers, which are hand built, hand wired, by the great Dennis Had of Cary Audio fame. Dennis in retirement is really making a name for himself churning out these small chassis tube wonders over the past 8 or so years. I do miss my Cherry Cain&Cains though.

    But lately I've returned to Electrostats powered by tube amps. Yes, life is never dull, nor cool in this household, with these tube amps keeping one warm year round.

    And did I say TURNTABLES? Digital smidigital, real audiophiles know that real audio rests in a nice stylus mated to even a modest turntable. Nuff said.

    And you guys thought guitars were expensive?! $10k will gain you entry into a modestly well built amplifier. Yes, just an amplifier. Your esteemed grade A system will still need to be outfitted with speakers, a preamp, cables, digital and or vinyl...etc, etc, etc. Acquiring state of the art audio equipment is never ending.

    Actually, over the years I've sampled much more audio gear than guitars, since beginning with Sansui receivers during a Navy tour overseas in the early 70's. I'd spend half my $165 bi weekly paychecks buying albums at $4 a pop...those were the daze!







    Last edited by 2bornot2bop; 05-10-2020 at 11:22 PM.

  18. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by jumpnblues View Post
    I would say $2500 to $3500 would get you a decent system if you buy the right components. It takes some research.
    Wowzers!
    Thanks so much. Way more than I'm willing to spend, but cant say I'm surprised. I guess you can drop 5 or 10K easily.

    Well, other than the cost and the research, sounds like I'd enjoy it, ha!

    Thanks again for the reply, very helpful!

  19. #18

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    2Bornot2bop for the win !!

    This is the audio world's equivalent to a really impressive private art collection. I imagine a lot of audiophiles out there would quickly develop an acute inferiority complex after seeing and hearing it.

    Back on the other side of the audio tracks, I have a menagerie of relatively cheap tube stuff, including a similar Dynaco ST-70 as Wintermoon's, a Sherwood FM tube tuner, and a Scott integrated amp.

    As 2Bornot2bop alluded to, some of these tube amps throw out a lot of heat. For this reason, I only fire mine up in the Fall and Winter. For the rest of the year, it's the solid state stuff. I recall those old Sansui amps - the biggest beasts to come out of Japan since Godzilla.

    Speakers include Energy Veritas, some Mirage OMD'S, a pair of Dynaco's, and a pair of Pro-Acs.

  20. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by WilliamScott
    Which of those 3 streaming services would you say is best. I just got a pair of Focal headphones and I want to get the best sound I can into them.
    I am using Quobuz. Quality wise I think it is the best and compared to the other ones it is more focused on jazz and classical music.

  21. #20

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    I guess I should delete my comments.

  22. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by DMgolf66 View Post
    Wowzers!
    Thanks so much. Way more than I'm willing to spend, but cant say I'm surprised. I guess you can drop 5 or 10K easily.

    Well, other than the cost and the research, sounds like I'd enjoy it, ha!

    Thanks again for the reply, very helpful!
    I guess it depends on what you are going for. As I said in my first post, I am not an audiophile by any means. I just enjoy putting a record on and listening to it. I have spent less than $1000 on a system that sounds good enough for me. I am sure that $5k+ systems will beat it, but this works for me right now. I can notice quite the difference between the vinyl and streaming on it, with vinyl showing more depth and warmth

  23. #22

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    I'm also not an audiophile but appreciated good sound enough go looking for it.....and did most of that searching in the mid to late 90's.

    I needed a small simple system to play CD's....and had the extra money to buy something a bit more high end.

    So this is what I bought then and am still using with great pleasure:

    Classe CAP-100 integrated amp
    Classe CDP-5 CD player

    Platinum Solo Speakers (excellent)

    A great small system that satisfies my diverse musical interests.

    I bought a second used CAP-100 a few months ago when my original started acting up.
    So while the first one's in the shop the substitute is doing quite well.
    Truly an act of desperation to buy the second, but it was a bargain and feeling fortunate that its been reliable so far.
    Neither of the manufacturers that built my equipment and speakers exist any more so not a bad thing to have some spares!

    ...and of course lately I've been returning to lots of dedicated and mindful listening.
    Even wondering if I should get something like the sub I was considering a such long time ago.
    Nowadays I wouldn't know where to begin in such a search!

  24. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by DMgolf66 View Post
    Ok, so I know ZERO about any of this stuff. I just play music through my Alexa or Google Home. Sometimes thru the TV. Growing up I had the big system with 2 enormous speakers, etc, but that's long gone.

    Can you guys give me an idea what's the minimum you have to spend to have something decent? I dont own any albums except Jack Wilkins "Windows" which is framed, so no need for turntable at this point. Also, our living room is also kitchen area. Large with high ceilings. Does that make much of a difference? I REALLY dont feel like going down this rabbit hole, I'd just like to get something decent and not grind over that last "10%" that people usually try and squeeze out.

    Thanks for ANY help!
    Lots of options for full systems in the $1,500 to $5000 range. Too many possibilities to start listing them, but think carefully about speaker placement since it has such a major effect. You'll may need to factor "spouse approval factor" or "SAF" into your calculations.

  25. #24
    Some nice systems listed here.

  26. #25

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    Quote Originally Posted by DMgolf66
    Can you guys give me an idea what's the minimum you have to spend to have something decent?
    Easiest place to begin is at Audiogon.com which has both forums and used gear for sale. I've been a member there for 25 years. Like guitars, you save lots of money by purchasing used gear, and buying used you can really stretch your dollars.

    Also check US Audio Mart America's Newest Online Hifi, Audio & Home Theater Classifieds for used gear. There's lots of it!

  27. #26

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    I might be an audiophile.

    I listen to the hundreds of records I collected from 1967 - 1978 mostly, some others

    on one of my two Bang and Olufsen radial turntables (both top of their lines in 1974 and 1975)
    using a rotation of 10 cartridges I've collected and kept stored in a little tackle box

    amplification handmade by the late George Wright of Kent, Washington comprising four chassis
    phono EQ and preamp, and dedicated power supply for those
    a pair of 2A3 single-ended triode (SET) monoblock amps
    totaling 14 tubes in all

    driving one of the last pairs made of the original version Klipsch LaScala (2005)
    finished in piano black, each a little over 12 cubic ft.

    So it looks very much like I have a furniture quality large washer and dryer pair in my main room,
    and between them some kind of 1930s military project with a pair of record players from Saturn.

  28. #27

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    2b, what are those double cone speakers? open baffle?

    I am looking for something like that, but in my neck of the woods finding oddities is tough, and getting them shipped from the US is tough.

    2b's suggestion of using Audiogon is the right one. Learning a lot before you spend, and being willing to try stuff and then dump it and take the friction is also worthwhile.
    Audioasylum is also decent.

    If you are drawn to tube amps, and can find some old Altec speakers which can be rescued from grandpa's attic (may need to replace the surrounds and get them spiffed up a bit) then Bottlehead is a decent place to get excellent-sounding tube preamps and amp kits.

    I am just setting up again now because have been moving frequently. Last system, now bringing out of storage is...

    Big horn speakers
    Pioneer MZ-1 amp, CZ-1a preamp, HZ-1 headamp (this is not your father's Pioneer stuff, it was Pioneer's wonkiest)
    Denon DP100M turntable, Exclusive P3 turntable, and a big Micro Seiki.

    In a separate system, I use Altec Model 19 speakers, an EAR tube amp, and an Accuphase pre/phono (and a couple of vintage Japanese turntables)

  29. #28

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    I’m jealous of some of you, but I choose not to go down that rabbit hole again, at least not right now.

    Lammie and 2B—those amps are works of art!

    At one time my ex and I inherited her father’s stereo—70’s-era Eagle 7A amp, Levinson 28 preamp, Watkins WE-1 speakers. It was an excellent system, of course, but it was too big for our house—not a small house by any means, but 6-foot tall speakers require BIG rooms with tall ceilings. We kept it for a couple of years, then I traded it to Dave Rogers (Dave’s Guitar Shop) for some guitars and gear. He had it in his office for a few weeks, then some well-known guitarist saw it, had to have it and bought it from him.

    I would like to say I wish I still had it, but (like the ex) no...

    I consign myself to a 1980’s-vintage system that’s “OK”—Nakamichi receiver, Bose 301’s, and Onkyo turntable with middle-of-the-line AT cartridge. Frankly I rarely listen to my record collection, which numbers about 400. I listen to streaming in the car (Bose) or through the computer (nice HK speakers) 95% of the time.

  30. #29

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    Quote Originally Posted by Doctor Jeff View Post
    I’m jealous of some of you, but I choose not to go down that rabbit hole again, at least not right now.

    Lammie and 2B—those amps are works of art!

    At one time my ex and I inherited her father’s stereo—70’s-era Eagle 7A amp, Levinson 28 preamp, Watkins WE-1 speakers. It was an excellent system, of course, but it was too big for our house—not a small house by any means, but 6-foot tall speakers require BIG rooms with tall ceilings. We kept it for a couple of years, then I traded it to Dave Rogers (Dave’s Guitar Shop) for some guitars and gear. He had it in his office for a few weeks, then some well-known guitarist saw it, had to have it and bought it from him.

    I would like to say I wish I still had it, but (like the ex) no...

    I consign myself to a 1980’s-vintage system that’s “OK”—Nakamichi receiver, Bose 301’s, and Onkyo turntable with middle-of-the-line AT cartridge. Frankly I rarely listen to my record collection, which numbers about 400. I listen to streaming in the car (Bose) or through the computer (nice HK speakers) 95% of the time.
    That 70's era system was probably better than most gear you could buy today.

  31. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by Doctor Jeff View Post
    ...
    Lammie and 2B—those amps are works of art!...
    Thanks, but mine are pretty simply utilitarian pieces. 2b's are in a different league by far.

    I always find it ironic that the price for simplicity often exceeds the price for complexity. Case in point: Our top of the line Kitchen Aid range crapped out a couple of years back. The electronic motherboard fried and there actually was a class action suite against Kitchen Aid because of it. It was a fairly expensive range, but we replaced it with one that cost more, albeit with only electronics for the ignition, thermostat, light and convection fan. No touch sensitive buttons, and quite literally no bells and whistles. Go figure.

  32. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by WilliamScott View Post
    That 70's era system was probably better than most gear you could buy today.
    Probably. My ex-FIL was an obsessive in many ways, and by the late 90's he had decided he needed to upgrade his system, hence passing it on to us. I forgot what he replaced the above with-- it was expensive but probably cheaper in late-1990 dollars than what he spent in the 70's. When he had his house built in the early 70's, he put a listening room in the basement about 15 x 30 feet with 18" poured concrete walls. On one wall there was a huge mural of a 747 landing. When we went over there, he would host listening parties. He had a number of records which were special pressings which he used to show off the system. When he played Saint-Saens Organ Symphony, it was an orgasmic experience, I won't lie.

    We had some conflicts with him after we moved away, and my ex was much more anxious to sell the equipment than I was. I told her I would do so if I could trade it for guitar equipment. She regretted that deal for a long time.

  33. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by travisty
    2b, what are those double cone speakers? open baffle?
    Yes sir. A 15" mid driver and a 15" bass or sub driver, and a horn-ribbon in the center. Those open baffles were unlike any produced. If you do find a well done open baffle made by a traditional builder they'll likely be a) veneer b) ultra expensive. These were $5k, and yet were hand built. Those are solid 3" thick mahogany open baffle panels. Ridiculously well made by a NW audiophile whose main gig was creating boardroom tables for some of whose who in downtown Seattle. This builder had incredible talents for all things woodworking.

    The blond pair had a 15" mid mated with a 15" sub. These performed incredibly well and had some of the tightest most acoustic sounding bass I've ever heard. It was as if Ray Brown were in the room with you.

    This was my first pair, in sapale wood, aka mahogany.



    and these were a prototype pair being the first ever conceived. You can see how the design of the later pairs evolved. Observe the Balanced Audio Technologies VK1000 mono blocks in the photo...talk about overkill! That's 1000 watts of Class A amplification. The speakers required all of 4 watts to drive.



    edit - here's the backside to my second blonde pair. Observe the tweeter mounted to the back of the upper mid. The steel frame created to support these baffles kept them from moving, which too meant the bass was rock solid.



    Last edited by 2bornot2bop; 05-12-2020 at 07:20 PM.

  34. #33

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    Quote Originally Posted by 2bornot2bop
    Yes sir. A 15" mid driver and a 15" bass or sub driver, and a horn-ribbon in the center. Those open baffles were unlike any produced. If you do find a well done open baffle made by a traditional builder they'll likely be a) veneer b) ultra expensive. These were $5k, and yet were hand built. Those are solid 3" thick mahogany open baffle panels. Ridiculously well made by a NW audiophile whose main gig was creating boardroom tables for some of whose who in downtown Seattle. This builder had incredible talents for all things woodworking.

    The blond pair had a 15" mid mated with a 15" sub. These performed incredibly well and had some of the tightest most acoustic sounding bass I've ever heard. It was as if Ray Brown were in the room with you.

    This was my first pair, in sapale wood, aka mahogany.



    and these were a prototype pair being the first ever conceived. You can see how the design of the later pairs evolved. Observe the Balanced Audio Technologies VK1000 mono blocks in the photo...talk about overkill! That's 1000 watts of Class A amplification. The speakers required all of 4 watts to drive.

    And how would this compare to my Alexa system?

  35. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by DMgolf66
    And how would this compare to my Alexa system?
    There's a thing called Alexa system?

  36. #35

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    Quote Originally Posted by 2bornot2bop
    There's a thing called Alexa system?
    Ask Alexa.

  37. #36

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    These Cain&Cain's won the vote for best ever voices. They were phenomenal when it came to reproducing the human voice. Required all of 8 watts to drive them effectively.


  38. #37
    Polk lsims 707s
    And a pioneer A20

    Curious what's the best solution to stream Spotify?

    I'm doing it right now through Bluetooth but it sounds to boomy

  39. #38

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    edit - here's the backside to my second blonde pair. Observe the tweeter mounted to the back of the upper mid. The steel frame created to support these baffles kept them from moving, which too meant the bass was rock solid.



    [/QUOTE]

    I am flummoxed. I do not see the tweeter there mounted on the back. What am I missing?

  40. #39

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    It's mounted on the back of the top speaker magnet.

  41. #40

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    I don’t think I really want to know how good that extremely high-end stuff sounds, or I will be down another rabbit hole!

    I used to play in a cover band in the 70s with a couple of audiophiles and we used Klipsch LaScalas for our PA! Those things could handle any volume and always sound sweet.

  42. #41

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    Quote Originally Posted by wintermoon
    It's mounted on the back of the top speaker magnet.
    Thanks. I now see a thing there.
    I am still flummoxed. I have simply no idea how that functions, practically.

  43. #42

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    Neutral is a goal. Soundstage is another. You want to be able to feel the directionality and depth of the soundstage.

  44. #43

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    Quote Originally Posted by DMgolf66
    Ok, so I know ZERO about any of this stuff. I just play music through my Alexa or Google Home. Sometimes thru the TV. Growing up I had the big system with 2 enormous speakers, etc, but that's long gone.

    Can you guys give me an idea what's the minimum you have to spend to have something decent? I dont own any albums except Jack Wilkins "Windows" which is framed, so no need for turntable at this point. Also, our living room is also kitchen area. Large with high ceilings. Does that make much of a difference? I REALLY dont feel like going down this rabbit hole, I'd just like to get something decent and not grind over that last "10%" that people usually try and squeeze out.

    Thanks for ANY help!
    I would say first decide what you wish to achieve with a system.
    Personally, I want to achieve a neutral system that simply reveals what the recording sounds like, with as little coloration as possible. I want to hear the limitations of the recordings. That is my understanding of high fidelity.
    Many people will have different goals, just as different players have different tone goals with their gear.

    Only once you know what you want can you start to get past the marketing and hype and zero in on what gear is required.

  45. #44

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    Quote Originally Posted by lammie200
    Neutral is a goal. Soundstage is another. You want to be able to feel the directionality and depth of the soundstage.
    Agreed. Ime that takes a acoustically proper space. As important if not more so that the gear I think.

  46. #45

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    Quote Originally Posted by DMgolf66 View Post
    Ok, so I know ZERO about any of this stuff. I just play music through my Alexa or Google Home. Sometimes thru the TV. Growing up I had the big system with 2 enormous speakers, etc, but that's long gone.

    Can you guys give me an idea what's the minimum you have to spend to have something decent? I dont own any albums except Jack Wilkins "Windows" which is framed, so no need for turntable at this point. Also, our living room is also kitchen area. Large with high ceilings. Does that make much of a difference? I REALLY dont feel like going down this rabbit hole, I'd just like to get something decent and not grind over that last "10%" that people usually try and squeeze out.

    Thanks for ANY help!
    Getting up a music system can happen a few different ways. Some people receive one handed down or inherited "already assembled" and are lucky if the previous owner made good choices (and if it all works right and is appropriate for what and how one listens). Others initially get a modest system, sometimes used, and gradually replace parts of it until the whole thing is quite good. If you are starting from scratch, a simple analytical approach can help getting oriented and informed on how to proceed. The bottom line is that listening is the real test. Overall, to the degree that your requirements approach normal, popular, average for each stage of consideration, the wider the aperture of inclusion - the more likely you will find things that are acceptable and will work for you.

    One analytical approach is to begin by examining the chain from the end backwards to the beginning: Ear - Air - Speakers - Electronics - Source

    Details
    Ear means what you want to hear and assumes that you want all the good stuff - clean, clear, balanced, etc., and really asks for the answer to just one question: what is the loudest average level you will want for listening to music? The answer to that is a sound pressure level in dB. Fortunately, there is a stock answer provided by the industry, so unless your preference is much lower or much higher, you may go with that, which is 82dB average level. There are smartphone apps that will measure sound level if you want to get a sense of how loud this is - turn up the car radio and see what the app shows as the level (going to be approximate).
    This is the worldwide standardized level played back through the studio monitors that the recording engineers listen to when setting the frequency balance and relative levels among the voices and instruments. Since hearing changes a little with respect to playback level, it is listening at this level where what you hear is most like what the recording engineer was hearing when the music was being worked in the studio.

    Air mean your listening space, the room, the acoustics. Sound level decreases with distance, but for most indoor systems the walls, floor, and ceiling provide enough "room gain" from reflections that the loss of level with distance is recovered by room gain. This is generally a wash, so unless your room is unusual or peculiar architecturally or acoustically, the average level you hear when listening to music is going to be very close to the average level the speakers produce.

    Speakers, therefore are going to need to produce an average level of, say 82dB or whatever you have chosen. Since this is the average level, what needs to be considered here is how really high in level the speakers will need to play for the peaks in the music. Virtually all recorded music, apart from a few specialty studios and test records, go up less than about 12dB above average, so the loudest level the speaker will need to play in this example using and average of 82dB would be 82dB+12dB=94dB.
    If your preferred average listening level were 85dB, then your speaker would need to be able to put out 97dB, and if you only needed an average of 78dB for listening then the speakers would need to peak at only 90dB. Keep in mind that these are relationships, not perfect math; too many variable unknown to be precise. You just need to know that the speakers will need to play louder than you think. With two speakers you get 3dB more, but it is simpler just to enjoy that as a margin of insurance.

    Electronics, therefore are going to need to provide the power to make the speakers play at the required peak level in order for you to hear the music at your preferred average level. Amps are rated to specify their power in average watts, and you can use that with the speaker rated sensitivity to calculate how much power is needed to play how loud. However, what is important is the matching between them. The average sensitivity for speakers is about 85dB with 1 watt input (assuming 8 ohm speaker load) and sound level increases 3dB when the input power is doubled... so 2 watts gives 88dB, 4 watts gives 91dB, 8 watts gives 94dB, etc.
    So roughly, as always, if your preferred average level for listening is 82dB, and you need 12dB over that to capture peaks, the speakers need to produce up to 94dB, and the speaker with a sensitivity of 85dB at one watt needs 8 watts to make peaks of 94dB to have 12dB range over your 82dB average preferred listening level.
    Unless you listen very loud or use very insensitive speakers, virtually all amps have sufficient power. Actual music average level is quite low with loud moments scattered around - most amps spend most of their time playing music with just a few watts, sometimes mostly less than one watt.

    Source means tape, records, CDs, streams, etc. I only play records and don't know much about the other sources, nothing about the modern digital sources.


  47. #46

    User Info Menu

    I am flummoxed. I do not see the tweeter there mounted on the back. What am I missing?
    See the round device in the center of the back side of the upper speaker with a red-positive black-negative wire input? That's actually a coaxial tweeter that's mounted behind the speaker magnet. Mounting it there the sound still projects to the front of the speaker. Pretty inventive I'd say!

    Quote Originally Posted by travisty
    edit - here's the backside to my second blonde pair. Observe the tweeter mounted to the back of the upper mid. The steel frame created to support these baffles kept them from moving, which too meant the bass was rock solid.



    Last edited by 2bornot2bop; 05-13-2020 at 04:41 PM.

  48. #47

    User Info Menu

    Quote Originally Posted by travisty
    Thanks. I now see a thing there.
    I am still flummoxed. I have simply no idea how that functions, practically.
    They function because OB's aka Open Baffles operate as a dipole speaker. Dipoles project sound via the front, and the rear. So having a coaxial tweeter mounted in the rear of its midrange speaker is not an issue. The sound projected by the tweeter projects both in the front and the rear of the speaker, hence it's a true dipole. Bass has a non directional sound wave.

    Open baffles beat a traditional box speaker in sound staging. The soundstage of these speakers, if set up correctly, is wide and deep, by traditional standards. You'd have to hear them to believe it, but that's audio. OB's think outside of the box. Pun intended.

    edit - here's a better view of the coaxial driver mounted to a different set of speakers. The driver is known as the Silver Iris.



    Last edited by 2bornot2bop; 05-13-2020 at 06:15 PM.

  49. #48

    User Info Menu

    I woulda figgered high frequency directionality would have put the cosh on a back-firing tweeter which had to come back through the baffle to get to the listener (unless there are substantial room effects).

    What are the mid and woofers? Something like that almost looks DIY-able. I know a guy who would do that in teak for me (which would suit), and I really need high efficiency speakers now but have no desire to ship another pair of Model 19s across the world.

  50. #49

    User Info Menu

    "woulda figgered high frequency directionality would have put the cosh on a back-firing tweeter which had to come back through the baffle to get to the listener (unless there are substantial room effects).
    "

    My thought too, not sure what the physics are but 2b can likely enlighten us. I'm sure there's a theory behind this configuration.

  51. #50

    User Info Menu

    I don't know about that particular speaker, but my RE cabinet came with an Eminence Alpha which can mount a coaxial tweeter. The threaded hole in the magnet goes all the way through, so the tweeter actually fires forward, through the bigger speaker's cone. These coaxial designs are actually not uncommon.