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 Restoration Road

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Sonic.beaver



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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Fri Jun 15, 2012 1:35 pm


Hi Michael

So we have 24 hours of settling and the sound from the system is actually surprisingly listenable. To recap -- I am running my system with the Janis W-1 subwoofer and the riving amp (a Rotel) removed from the room and the Paradigm X-30 crossover units discommected. I got far better than my experience in late February and March this year when Sonic ran the gear sans the Janis W-1 subwoofer and supporting gear.

The first impression is a transparent and focussed sound with clear trebles, a lower noise floor and a satisfying bass that rolls off but does so gradually. There is a good sensation that the musick sounds a lot less constricted -- similar to the difference between a loudspeaker with a complex crossover network compared to a single driver loudspeaker with no crossover in the signal path. Certainly promising. I feel the music is coming direct from the performers rather than a seet, full but homogenized sound that sounds sterile over time.

But there are six major differences compared to the system in March.

1. The Bookcase Wall has not been moved forward about 1 foot towards the centre of the room. The Bookcase Wall as it stands gives me a gentle slope to the bass unlike the rise then sharp cut off with the Bookcase Wall further forward.

2. There are two DecoTunes mounted on the ceiling like Shutters over the listening position

3. The Sony Blu-ray player is operated through its onboard DAC and the Musical Fidelty V-DAC has been removed from the system.

4. The genuine Michael Green platform used to support the Rotel amp driving the Janis W-1 subwoofer is still in place (last time it was removed from the room).

5. There is a genuine Michael Green platform used as my turntable support in the room to the Left of the main rack. This test was carried out with no turntable on the platform.

6. There is that Ikea curtain hung over the windows on the main wall.

Sonic supposes this makes for a different environment. But it is giving me enjoyable musick of all types.

In terms of BOO!, the last time round nearly round the bend with BOOwooo effect when the Janis W-1 and its related components were removed. Now there is more control and in the BOO!

I'll go slow with the tuning but I need to dial in more body in the human voice range and a flatter low bass -- it should be flat down to the high 30 hzs at least. The soundstage is more natural and wide but some work here is needed.

This is a lot better than when Sonic tried the system without the X-30 crossover, the Rotel and the Janis W-1 in the system a few months back.

There are problems that Sonic will have to tune out but so far what we have here just may work! Of course I am setting up a record of how things progess and change. Last time I threw in the towel at just past 25 days. This time, Sonic will persevere and wants to help it workshopes it will work.

Michael -- your advice on how this project is working to get more extension in the lower bass down to the 30Hz range. And the dealing with the BOO!ooo effect that I think has a blurring in the room.

Sonic
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Michael Green
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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Sat Jun 16, 2012 12:18 am

cheers YES, that's my man Exclamation Now you are talking sunny

The simple system will out perform the complicated one if all the "tune" is set in motion so that the signal can flow freely. So as you do things moving forward be thinking of freedom of electronic parts and pressure zones. Let your pressure zones do most of the work for you, which means find the zones in the room that focus key parts to the music in. With your system this simple be mindful that everything effects everything else and don't be shy about the effects that even platform placement and other footprints can have in the room. With fewer parts balance that power strip so that the things plugged in do not add weight or tension. The key to simple is delicate so try things like instead of clamping your speaker cables in lay them into the post holes. Are you using type 2 or 1?

So how many parts to the electronics do we have now. And find that picture card!

You may find the pressure boxes to be of use again. Try not to make them by spec but by sound. I also spend a lot of time playing with the wires in the walls and how the electric cords hang.

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Sonic.beaver



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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Sat Jun 16, 2012 11:13 am


Hi Michael

My simplified system is getting better with settling – at the +24 hours point, it was slightly thin, but at +48 hours the bass has become warm, full and with decent extension.

To answer your questions -- Sonic is using T1 speaker cables to feed the Magnaplanar 1.5QRs.

My system goes like this:

Blu-ray player / turntable / tube RIAA stage > Preamp > Main amp > loudspeakers

Right now all wiring is done where possible with cables from Michael.

To have my speaker cables loose enough "by laying them inside the post holes" without clamping is a greater risk than I am prepared to take with my system. Ditto moving the racks about a bit at a time. Taking down a rack and setting it up is to Sonic a task that is depressing.

As the system settled past the 24 hours point, I found the soundstage widening by itself but seemed to “throw the soundstage and images outwards to the sides of the room”. This is a rather strange effect but one that Sonic may be able to tune by moving the DecoTunes and PZCs about in the front of the room. I found the center images had become recessed (though not quite the Banana soundstage) so I tried opening the curtains to uncover the window panes. This increased the liveliness of the room immeidately but it didn;t help. Centre images were pushed further back even more towards the front wall.

I also found that 2 x DecoTune panels hung on the rear wall above the top of the Bookcase Wall gave me excellent clarity but after a while I found it robbed the musick of life.

The bass is now very nice, deep and full without boom and there is very good transient response. The transients startle!

Sonic is actually enjoying the musick through this simplified system. I feel less compulsion to tweak/tune anything and it is a joy to listen to musick for a few hours at a go, having no compulsion to tweak/tune anything and say at the end of the seesion “that was really nice musick.”

Sonic
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Sonic.beaver



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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Sat Jun 16, 2012 11:36 am


Continued:

Michael -- comments if you will on what I observed, especially the hanging up two DecoTunes on the back wall which improved clarity and transparency but robbed life from the musick.

Also talk about the effect of the soundstage being apparently thrown out to the the side walls (odd effect, hard to describe).

I found the room is quieter with less overhang, the BOO! being more controlled. There is however a note that stands out -- it is at a frequency that sits between the E and F notes (E-sharp or F-flat?) and corresponds to a frequency of around 472 Hz.

Sonic is also finding that recordings that I thought are bass light are actually fine because I am beginning to hear that surrounding the bass note (thin-sounding), I am now hearing a halo of girth which taken together makes the recording really OK -- I am now hearing this, an effect that I have not heard on other systems -- playing this recording they either sound thin in the low end or boomy, the girth being inaudible till now. This is the first time I can hear the bass instrument and the girth/performance room effect separately but working together to give a low end that is tight and expansive at the same time.

Sonic
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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Sat Jun 16, 2012 12:23 pm

I'm very happy to hear this as I personally love the simple system and find it hard to truly enjoy an over complicated one. Even when I listen to a transport/DAC front end it sticks out to me as I can hear the extra parts. I know that folks say the technology is what counts but there is something in the extra parts that, for me, looses what may be gained.

Do TuneStrips work better in the place where the DecoTunes are? Give this a try. Sometimes in my room I like the tunes hanging over attached in all four corners (ceiling and wall), it depends.

The soundstage being thrown out to the sides is sometimes an amp/speaker load issue. Play with tuning on the amp and see if it comes into focus or adjust your front PCZ's. Does the note sticking out splatter? There may be a hard surface in the room that needs tamed but it can also be in the signal path. Try those DecoTune feet under a couple of things as they are open in those frequencies.

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Sonic.beaver



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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Sun Jun 17, 2012 11:15 am


Hi Michael

The E/F note sticking out is not audible on music, even on pieces that are composed for E or F. It is however very noticeable on the BOO! test and also when Sonic speaks on the phone from the listening chair. This ringing is very irritating although it does not show its head when playing musick.

Sonic now is using one DecoTune base to support the amplifier. The initial effect is increased clarity and a reasonably expanded soundstage. Pleasant but it lacks the fluidity of musick well-played. There is a slight increase in subjective playback volume (a good sign).

I then removed the Tunestrips from the rear corners and moved them to where I had tried the DecoTunes high up the rear wall. This worked with the DecoTune base under the main amp giving a natural soundstage with realistic placement of instruments.

The feeling of the soundstage being thrown out to the boundary walls is reduced.

Michael, can you tell me how I can “play with the tuning of (my) amp or adjust (my) front PZCs” to bring the soundstage more into focus?

Also explain what "The soundstage being thrown out to the sides is sometimes an amp/speaker load issue" means? Are you talking about an electrical impedance mismatch betweent the amp and speaker or something else?

Michael, what do you learn from my finding that pulling the curtains apart gives centre images that move even further away from me? How do I deal with that and bring the centre images forward?

Sonic knows the gold standard of the Tune is not to have things like curtains and damping and I will go back to the Ikea wood blinds but it has to sound right -- for now it doesn't. I get a recessed centre image and a bright rining sound that is not what I expect my system or the musick I play to sound like.

OTOH, given the system as it is now, the sound of the Magneplanar 1.5QRs is full and not lacking in bass at all (except for the extreme lows). The sound has girth and harmonically rich. Again Sonic has to remark that the simple system does sound right, just like the difference between listening to a loudspeaker with a complex crossover and a crossoverless single driver design. The simpler loudspeaker has an ease and tonal calmness that is beautiful to hear. Sonic's system is moving in this direction and it is good.

Was listening this weekend to Dvorak String Quartets (Takacs Quartet on Decca), Bach's French Suites for Harpsichord (Harmonia Mundi), some Art Pepper, Orlando Lassus and works for prepared piano by Cage.

Sonic

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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Tue Jun 19, 2012 11:57 am


Hi Zonees

A few more days of settling and the perceived volume for a given setting on the preamp gain has increased. Subjectively Sonic's volume control setting on the preamp level settings are back where they were when I had the old Sony then later the V-DAC in the system.

Then a certain change in harmonic structure is beginning to show starting at the nmid bass end. Playing one of my favourite CDs of Bach sonatas for cello, the instrument now has a tonal richness which can be spontaneuosly described as "beautiful". This Naxos recording is a good one but the cello has up till now sounds strong, deep and big. But not tonally rich and beautiful.

Very musically enjoyable and satisfying.

On other recordings, there are hints that some parts of the musick are tonally correct and very sastifying. I am surprised that the Magneplanar 1.5QRs and the rest of the system can sound so good without the Paradigm crossover, the Rotel and the
Janis W-1 subwoofer. The bass, though slightly rolled off, is very acceptable with nice depth, extension and transient impact.

A weakness I hear is on some recordings, the tom toms in a drum kit may be not tight enough and rather heavy and loose. The kick drum too on some recordings is a dull thud rather than a tight punch to the gut.

Michael -- your views on how I can tighen up the toms and my questions in my last posting?

Sonic
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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Tue Jun 19, 2012 12:49 pm

Hi Sonic

This is a lot of ground to cover study but I'll walk through a few things.

First, at my own place I've been doing things that have required me to deal with a window. Because of the window being directly in front the effects of it is catastrophic when changes are made to tune it. You can hear everything off of a front wall and it can make or break the sound. Finally after all the tuning I did on the window studying each move and step I decided to cover the window with Drywall and the difference was nothing shy of shocking. Keep in mind I did the cheap fix, one support stud in the middle wedged into place and the Drywall placed over the whole window. The drywall is .5" thick and sticks out that much from the rest of the wall and no doubt would sound better framed in and flush, but even doing the cheap fix removes having to mess with the window's effects. For people who don't care about loosing the light (I prefer a darker listening room) this is a super easy tune that I think will fix tons of problems for folks.

Secondly, because I needed to paint the drywall I again feel like I'm flashing back to the tuneland archives and talking about paint. The sound of paint has a major effect on the sound of the room. Again an easy tune with a huge effect. Paint can change the sound of pressure zones big time and can help turn harder walls into walls that are a lot easier to listen to. Quick evaporating water based paints in flat have the lowest Boo factor, and while painting my wall I started to think about your room and wondered what type of paint you have.

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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Wed Jun 20, 2012 6:08 am


Hi Michael

Good news is that my room (actually all wall and ceiling surfaces of my dwelling) are painted with water-based paint.

True it is that a window of a sgfnificant size on the wall behind the speakers affects the sound big time. Difficult to tune, with probably the only thing worse is an archway betweem to another room.

The drywall over the window is good and i would like to try this as an alternatve to the curtains. Painting it with water-based paint no problem at all. I just finished re-painting another part of the dwelling and got some paint left.

How do you suggest I go about this? I would want gaps between the pieces so some light can come in but will this cause resonant cavities behind the drywall?

Or some form of hinged structure so I can let light in when the room is used during the day for things other than listening and closed when musick is played.

The drywall can sit slightly within the window pane recess.

Suggestions, Michael?

Given how rapidly my system is progressing and settling daily after being simplified, this may be the key that unlocks the door to the Tune Dimension sitting just next door to our hifi reality.

Sonic


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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Wed Jun 20, 2012 1:41 pm


Hi Zonees

Sonic was listening to musick this evening and the sound after more than one week of running without a subwoofer after I "simplified" my system is full, rich and big. Asking myself why I ever needed a subwoofer system in the first place. Of course back then, when my system was less free and tuned, I certainly did.

But now, even though the statically measured bass extension is less without a subwoofer, Sonic doesn't miss the bass from the great and wonderful Janis W-1 subwoofer.

I decided to grasp the nettle and hear how much loss of bass Sonic's system is suffering by playing Bach's Dorian Toccatas and Fugues (Karl Richter/Archiv). Notg a lot surprisingly!

The bass and upper bass is good and I didn't feel any serious loss of bass. For sure, there is a decending pattern in the bass pedals and some passages in the first Passagalia that has the high stops counterpointed with deep and strong bass -- these bass notes are more felt than heard -- pedal work that activate the ambience.

I actually hear with the Magneplanar 1.5QRs run full range that there are low notes and ambience activation. The organ on this Archiv CD is reproduced very open and beyond wall to wall.

Playing some Joseph Haydn (Symphonies 35, 35 and 67) gave a very good impression of a small orchestra with nice highs, ambience and a deep bass viol line. And the viola and cello lines are audibly separate.

Only thing is, there is a playback volume sweet spot where the bass, mids and treble are in good balance and tone is calm. Given that my amp is only putting out around 90W max, Sonic cannot fairly expect it to reproduce 20Hz to 20KHz flat at 110 dB C weighting flat. It simply won't.

The balance falls apart over 87 DB C average (+98 dB C peaks) where the midrange predominates over the bass. While audiophiles may scoff, this volume level with classical, baroque, renaissance and gothic musicks is much more than is needed or expected in Sonic's listening room.

Sonic thinks the Sony Blu-ray player should be top tuned in addition to it staning on AAB1x1 cones from Michael. Coming soon this.

Sonic

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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Fri Jun 22, 2012 11:19 am


Hi Michael and Zonees

Sonic's system has settled even more and taking down the Ikea curtains and restoring the Ikea wooden blinds is becoming a real option. It was a journey to tame the BOO! in my room and for sure the sound is almost at the point I can do the restoration (this thread is called Restoration Road after all), the sound I am getting now is like I am breaking out of an audio Bermuda Triangle.

Michael's discussion about drywall sparks interest in my thinking, it may be an alternative to the blinds. And drywall is available cheap over here.

Michael -- what ideas do you have for Sonic to use drywall panels on my window recess using four panels with gaps so light can enter the room?

What other thoughts or tunes do you have using drywall? I understand that quick drying water based paint is good for the sound and this too is available here.

Another thing I wanted to ask -- your system runs without electrical grounding. Why is this? What is the effect to your ears when your system is electrically grounded? What is the Tune-theory that indicates against grounding the system electrically? Shouldn't electrical grounding be part of the Tune grounding trilogy? Why is this something you avoid?

Sonic's system has opened up a lot and I am amazed. The bass is good and so is the girth and soundstage. I did try a canopy over the CD player using a metal corner rods and small MTDs and a resitone rod grounded the transport at a point directly over the centre of the CD rotational axis. The wood canopy was using was sightly warped. The sound was great at first but with settling the warped wood made the whole canopy assembly lean and a leaning clamp canopy/top tune rack does not sound right.

The music I been listening to as the system settled included Suites for recorder (Franscois Dieupart/La Simphonie du Marais), Unchained (Johnny Cash) -- the depth and bigness of Cash's voice was hair raising...., F Couperin's Third Booke of Clavecin Works (Kenneth Gilbert), Joe Pass, Herb Ellis, Ray Brown and Jake Hanna (Concord) and Dvorak's Cello Concerto 104 (Starker, Slatkin and the St Louis SO). Wonderful musick, so good that it is a world away from the mega-audiophile systems that get featured in the magazine. Now Sonic is stopping the fretting about about tweaking the equipment but soaking into the musick that is playig in my room.

Sonic
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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Tue Jun 26, 2012 5:16 pm

Hi Sonic

I cover my entire window because it is on my front sound stage wall. Doing it in pieces didn't work as well. You will have to decide if you like it partly covered or not, but I'm sticking with my whole window covered.

On the grounding issue. It's been so long since I have set up listening test for this that I don't feel like I can make a bunch of comments till I actually set up a test lab for grounding again. I can tell you here is an audible difference and things can get too thick and too tin sounding (as with shielding) but until I set up a lab to study this I hate to comment on the past only.

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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Thu Jun 28, 2012 11:10 am


Hi Michael

Sonic has had a bit more than two weeks of settling with my simplied, no subwoofer, system and I think it is great -- the Magnaplanar 1.5QRs don't need a subwoofer in the right acoustic conditions. Zonees should see that Michael's simple system approach is a reality and a real option for musick systems.

With the two weeks+ of settling, though the bass in my system gently rolls off, there is so much more detail in the bass range, I can tell how low frequency instruments are being played and the sound texture.

I have also, this week, removed the bottom metal cover from my Quicksilver preamp, placed the unit on two pieces of 12" x 4" x 1/4" cured cedar pieces from Michael setting them up on Harmonic Feet and top tuning with a MW bar and a solid AAB1x1 cone.

The low range deepened further, a midbass leaness disappeared and midrange has become bigger and more forceful. The whole sound has taken on taken a stronger sense of music happening and people playing music in a space. The bass is full and quite surprising for a planar speaker. Definitely no need for a subwoofer system. There is beginning to be an envelopment round me and less sense of the sound leaking out the two side doors.

There is so much more performance character in the CDs I am playing and the sound is taking on an ease that reflects real live musick.

Sonic
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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Fri Jun 29, 2012 12:53 pm


Hi Zonees

A couple of days of settling of Sonic's Quicksilver preamp sans bottom plate and Michael's pine/cedar planks, Harmonic Feet and one solid AAB1x1 solid cone for top tuning and the sound has increased in realism.

Very good depth and percussiveness. The transient response is sharper and the bass is even better than when I had the subwoofer system. Many audiophiles will not be able to imagine that this is coming from Magneplanar 1.5QRs driven with a 90W amp!

I found there is a step for some recordings between 9.30 and 10.00 on the Quicksliver preamp volume control where we go from a soft sound to an open and highly dynamic sound. This could be due to the output level of the tuned CD player.

Sonic likes analog playback (tape and LP) but the CD playback is now very close and on-balance almost preferable.

Was listening to The Japanese Saxophone -- Claude Delangle (sax), Odile Delangle (Pno), Jean Geoffray (per) on BIS, Haydn Cello Concerti (Coin, with Hogwood and Academy of Ancient Music) and Dvorak sonatas and pieces for Violin and Piano (Marwood and Tomes) on Helios.

This is really some excellent sound!

Sonic
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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Sun Jul 01, 2012 6:56 am

Greetings Michael

The removal of the Quicksilver preamp’s bottom plate has made a big difference to the sound – it gave:

a. clearer trebles with detail and perspective -- difference in cymbal sizes, location and ring

b. a nice forward midrange -- choir voices focused with better articulation

c. a more even and extended bass – details of tone and overtones from how the instrument is played

This is great and a testimony that Michael’s view of the “simple system” is correct. No more complex equipment with lots of circuitry any more (of course tune amps have the advantage in this this respect).

One post skipped by Sonic in a busy period a week ago was I have managed to Top Tune the Sony Blu-ray BD380 player. Initially I used a single resitone down rod on the transport contacting the top where the rotating axis is – Sonic had opened up the totally enclosed transport and found there is no bridge to tune! The spindle bearing is attached to the plastic dust cover…..cost cutting at work….at least the enclosed transport reduces dust contamination of the lens.

What I found was when the support rods (mild steel rods with MTDs from Michael) supporting the cherry-finished canopy were upright, the sound was good with more focus and “definite-ness”. But in a few hours, the canopy assembly leaned due to a slight warp in the wood, the sound was worse than without a canopy.

What Sonic did was install a second resitone down rod over the transport to resist the force causing the tilt. This solved the problem and the support rods have been perfectly vertical for 9 days now even with the hex-nuts loose.

Between the top tune canopy and the tune to the preamp, I got a sound that Sonic is completely Very Happy pleased with. cheers Michael

Questions for Michael:
a. How do I integrate my turntable, tube phono stage, tape deck and tuner into the “simple system” concept?

My CD – preamp – main amp is powered off one small power strip plugged into one wall socket. The system sounds better with everything plugged into one strip and powered from one outlet. But I got more gear than I got outlets on my power strips. Shall I put the TT, phono stage, tape onto another power strip and run it from another outlet, or should I run two power strips in series powered from one outlet?

b. What can I do about the window? As a test yesterday when the system was cookin' great, I pulled the curtains so a lot of the window glass was exposed.

More clarity and life in the sound – much more entertaining initially BUT a slight upward shift in pitch causing a midrange ring. Also the forward and projected images I like so much fell back to just behind the racks giving a case of “banana soundstage”. Now that the instruments and voices are so well reproduced, the recession of soundstage is more noticeable than before.

c. I feel the whole sound is trying to 'break forward" to me but something is holding it back to a large area from the plane of my speakers towards the front wall.

The sound can (depending on the recording) give the sense the performance space is twice or more the width of my 14 ft room and way many feet beyond the front wall but it doesn;t come forward though but the ambience can surround and be behind the listening seat. I get a strong sense something is leaking out the side doors.

I’d would like to hear your ideas on these to spark off the next steps. The sound now is the most satisfying Sonic ever got from my system.

Sonic
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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Mon Jul 02, 2012 7:03 pm

Hi Sonic

Very happy to hear the results Exclamation This falls right in line with everything I have experienced. I think sometimes we have the question of how and why in our minds when we tune and it keeps us from finding the place where the system is doing what it is meant to do. We over think things then act on what we think should happen if high end works and not to what really does work. I think about this a lot when exploring the digital realm. I know what the people say the numbers should do, but I hear something quite different when I compare this to a simpler (less weight, less mass, less connections) setup.

Covering and playing with the front of your room is something that you must listen to carefully, weighing the plus and minuses of every move. For myself it was a choice of how long did I want to learn my window vs getting it covered so I could get some work done. Covering it completely solved a ton of time for me. As always take each step slowly.

The only way I would ever add other components to my system is if I had a separate electrical source and a separate equipment room to put things in. For myself when I get things down to that simple level it is hard for me to mess it back up again and feel happy with the system. If I were to do this I would have a serious room and a room that is not so much.

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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Thu Jul 05, 2012 12:59 pm


Hi Michael

From what you are syaing Sonic understands that any multi-source system will compromise the tune and that I should take the extra Clampracks that Sonic has in the room along with the turntable, phono stage and tape unit and move them to be part of another of my systems which are "less serious"? Does this mean the "simple system" concept is incompatible with multiple sources like CD + reel to reel and if complexity is the enemy, this will mean that no Network Assisted Storage + computer + solid state memory system + DAC (for Red Book and High-Res uncompressed music files) will ever make the cut?

On my Simple System:

This week, Sonic stuck a pair of spare Space Cones on the middle glass panels of my window and the focus of the images steadied up a lot. Ther sound was improved noticeably but moderately. But this led to a strange experience -- I was playing a vocal piece (folk rock CD) at slightly higher than my normal listening levels and I had to leave the room to attend to something and was gone for about 15 minutes so several tracks had gone by.

When Sonic returned to my room and opened the door I got a shock for a second or two. I heard a real human being singing inside the room and there was no other physical human in my dwelling at the time!

The illusion lasted for a couple of seconds but it was that real momentarily that my hair stood on end.

What is more amazing is that if this was due to the Space Cones on the window panes, the curtains were closed and covering the Space Cones. What do you think, Michael?

There's something going on here. Is this consistent with what you know where the cones on the glass have an effect even if the glass is screened off by curtains or something?

Also, what suggestions do you have about dealing with the "leakage" of ambience that I think I am getting through my side doors? Is this my imagination? What can I do to test if it is so?

Sonic
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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Sat Jul 07, 2012 11:28 am


Michael says:

The only way I would ever add other components to my system is if I had a separate electrical source and a separate equipment room to put things in..... If I were to do this I would have a serious room and a room that is not so much.

Sonic takes Mr Green seriously though sometimes will a dash of NaCl. I removed the racks for the turntable, tube phono stage, tape deck from the room and made a support for the preamp's Magnequest using a DecoTune base, Harmonic Feet, a spare Cable Ground and a MW slice. Looks very Heath Robinson indeed.

So this listening room now has only the CD -> Preamp -> Main amp -> Loudspeaker chain. It was quite a job dismounting the other stuff.

Did it work?

First, I found that the BOO! signature changed considerably with the removal of the racks and stuff. The BOO! became more reverberant and ringy. Conventional audio thought will tell us that changing room treatment can do this but not moving equpment racks. But it does!

Second, the reverberant BOO! did not translate into an echoey sound. In fact the sound was very controlled and musical. This means BOO! may not be the sole indicator (although a good indicator it is) of how a room sounds when musick is played.

Third, without the extra stuff the sound appeared a bit out of sorts but the harmonics were richer, image focus and depth was better, the illusion of people-making-music was good. There was a loss of volume -- I had to increase the preamp volume control one or two clicks to get the girth and transient push I wanted. Bass is good and the sense of great width exists.

Maybe settling will get things more balanced. Sonic senses some resetting needs to be done with this Even Simpler System and Room. May need more or fewer cable grounds, may need to reangle or reposition the FS-PZCs, FS-DTs and FS-DRTs. Must of course let it settle a few days before getting into this.

Sonic's system has settled 20+ days with no subwoofer system. Nothing is missing, the system is going good.

Michael is right again.

If the settling and re-tune goes right, I will set up the genuine Michael Green clamprack and the analog equipment elsewhere in my dwelling where I have other gear. Multiple systems in multiple spaces....exciting it can rally be.

Sonic
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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Sat Jul 07, 2012 8:44 pm

"From what you are syaing Sonic understands that any multi-source system will compromise the tune and that I should take the extra Clampracks that Sonic has in the room along with the turntable, phono stage and tape unit and move them to be part of another of my systems which are "less serious"? Does this mean the "simple system" concept is incompatible with multiple sources like CD + reel to reel and if complexity is the enemy, this will mean that no Network Assisted Storage + computer + solid state memory system + DAC (for Red Book and High-Res uncompressed music files) will ever make the cut?"

Of course multi-source systems work, but when I get something simple set up I almost hate to breath in the room till I'm done listening to it. Extra parts and pieces just get in the way for me. My choice is to have a separate room for components. I have had systems that sound great with everything in the room but boy is it great when you don't have as much to tune.

"What is more amazing is that if this was due to the Space Cones on the window panes, the curtains were closed and covering the Space Cones. What do you think, Michael? "

Space Cones have this magic thing going on and I think when people get back into serious tuning they are going to be a tool that can not be lived without.

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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Sat Jul 07, 2012 8:56 pm

Sonic.beaver wrote:

Michael says:

The only way I would ever add other components to my system is if I had a separate electrical source and a separate equipment room to put things in..... If I were to do this I would have a serious room and a room that is not so much.

Sonic takes Mr Green seriously though sometimes will a dash of NaCl. I removed the racks for the turntable, tube phono stage, tape deck from the room and made a support for the preamp's Magnequest using a DecoTune base, Harmonic Feet, a spare Cable Ground and a MW slice. Looks very Heath Robinson indeed.

So this listening room now has only the CD -> Preamp -> Main amp -> Loudspeaker chain. It was quite a job dismounting the other stuff.

Did it work?

First, I found that the BOO! signature changed considerably with the removal of the racks and stuff. The BOO! became more reverberant and ringy. Conventional audio thought will tell us that changing room treatment can do this but not moving equpment racks. But it does!

Second, the reverberant BOO! did not translate into an echoey sound. In fact the sound was very controlled and musical. This means BOO! may not be the sole indicator (although a good indicator it is) of how a room sounds when musick is played.

Third, without the extra stuff the sound appeared a bit out of sorts but the harmonics were richer, image focus and depth was better, the illusion of people-making-music was good. There was a loss of volume -- I had to increase the preamp volume control one or two clicks to get the girth and transient push I wanted. Bass is good and the sense of great width exists.

Maybe settling will get things more balanced. Sonic senses some resetting needs to be done with this Even Simpler System and Room. May need more or fewer cable grounds, may need to reangle or reposition the FS-PZCs, FS-DTs and FS-DRTs. Must of course let it settle a few days before getting into this.

Sonic's system has settled 20+ days with no subwoofer system. Nothing is missing, the system is going good.

Michael is right again.

If the settling and re-tune goes right, I will set up the genuine Michael Green clamprack and the analog equipment elsewhere in my dwelling where I have other gear. Multiple systems in multiple spaces....exciting it can rally be.

Sonic

I think you are on to something big here and with settling and repositioning of some of your acoustical and mechanical toys you are going to like this approach a lot. As you may know I'm doing the same thing in my little listening room and having a blast freeing up the room from the extra mechanical mass.

To answer the question of leakage. Have you ever tuned on the other side of your doors?

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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Sun Jul 08, 2012 2:05 am


No I haven't touched the other side of the doors. But please elaborate -- are you talking about the other surface of the doors or the spaces beyond them?
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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Mon Jul 09, 2012 3:26 pm

You can change the pressure zone on the other side of the door to change the tonality of it. This is why I make it a practice to tune my whole place. It's surprising how much we can effect the sound of our listening area by tuning other spaces.

You can also use Space Cones on the door itself and sometimes they even work better on the back of the door panel than they do the front side.

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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Tue Jul 10, 2012 11:11 am


Hi Michael

Space Cones working better on the back of the door panel than on the front (facing into my room) side....now that is something I want to try! It may be the solution I been looking for to stem the "leakage".

You have seen the pictures of my room -- I got double doors on each side of my listening room. Tell me:

a. How many space cones do I need per door panel?

b. How do you suggest I place them, what pattern?

c. Should I stick the Space Cones directly to the doors or should I stick the Cones onto MW squares and stick these to the door surfaces?

Let me know soon....

Sonic recently heard a special Big System -- JBL 15" woofers, JBL mids and TAD tweeters. Very efficient and was driven tri-amped with a combination of tube and transistor amps and an outboard crossover. The sound was very present and the owner played Neil Young's Tonight's the Night. Though this is a recording Sonic is not familiar with but the listening session was something else.

On the title track which starts off rather laid back, the snare drum shots were like a slap to the side of the head when played loud. Sonic doesn't play musick this loud but even when turned down the drums had a snap and whack that startled. Silly me, I took the CD home and tried it on my system. Crying or Very sad The sound was clearer but the startle/impact factor was diminished by a lot.

Maybe this is the limitation of the Magneplanar 1.5QRs driven with an amp that is underpowered by audiophile standards but with the Tune just about cuts it.

Your views Michael? Have you heard this recording, how do I get that startle, slap to the head and punch in the solar plexus from this recording....like you get live.... and yes, Sonic has heard a school brass band marching by close up and the pressure front of the brass instruments, the impact of the snare drums, the thump of the Grand Casse and the shimmer/crash of the cymbals is more than I have heard from audio gear.

Michael, your views?

Sonic
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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Fri Jul 13, 2012 8:13 am


Hi Zonees

Sonic has been running a "simple system" for just past a month now and the results have been surprisingly good, especially given my earlier attempt at such a set up.

Even though the lowest notes are rolled off or missing, the whole presentation of the system is now one of musick not strands of sound bundled together.

Yup, I am keeping this layout. Very Happy

Next up, Sonic will trying optimising the speaker placement. Instinctively I would like to keep them where they are in relation to the length of the room but bringing them closer together. Once I do that some re-tuning of the room will have to be done but there is likely to be something beneficial here (remember this placement was arrived at with a subwoofer originally).

I also find the idea of tuning the outer surfaces of my doors an intriguing idea but do not have any spare Space Cones to do this. So I'll need to buy more from Michael.

More coming up on the re-positioning of the Magnaplanar 1.5QRs.

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PostSubject: Re: Restoration Road   Fri Jul 13, 2012 8:08 pm

Hi Sonic

Preparing for a trip tonight but wanted to jump in and say how happy I am that you are going simple. cheers The door is something that you will need to learn on your own. Hinges and locks have a lot to do with the sound and those combined with the panels make their own resonate characters. I usually start at the middle of things as they are usually the lowest tone.

I do like the sound of high efficiency systems. It's maybe one of the main reasons I don't do panels unless I have a chance to really anchor them down and tune up the upper part of the frames. It's also why I like to start my systems at a + db level and not dampened.

When I get back I'll look and see if I have Neil's "tonight's the night".

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