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Posts posted by maxg

  1. Max:

    Without being there it's hard to diagnose. Certainly compression of 500mb to 16mb is going to be unacceptable. I do not compress at all as space is even cheaper than Cd/DVD blanks. As to levels, don't push it. Digital dynamic range is twice that of LP, so you have plenty of room to spare. I acutally increase many LP's dynamic range while recording by up to 40% (usually more like 15%) via DBX without problems.

    If you have the specs on the laptop, let us know the specific audio chip set you are using.

    I've touched nothing, including levels, on the MR-1 and am getting excellent results. While I had doing it via PC down to a science, this is down to "do it on a whim" at the push of a button. I like that...


    Whilst in theory you are correct - digitial supports a much wider dynamic range than analogue (on a vinyl record) it does not seem to be the case in practice for me. This is in terms both of playback and of recording (although there is obviously an element of the limitations of the input stage here).

    What I notice - time and again - is that music coming from viny has so much more impact - feel - directness than from any digial media ESPECIALLY in the bass. Its possible that using the term dynamic range is not correct to explain this. I think I would prefer to refer to the range of frequencies at which the music is dynamic - meaning punchy - with presence - close to real and so on.

    I am currently battling with the pass-through of the sound to see if there is a way of having it without degrading the quality of the recording. If I can do this then I can get the volume control in the right position to record the quietest parts and still have enough room for the peaks. Right now I am close - but cresendos are still slightly out of the range. Listening to the result - now - its only noticable when concentrating really hard - and then only in rather short bursts.

    Now having said all that what I have now produced is closer to the original vinyl than anything yet tried - including SACD's and DVDa's, vinyl to CD rips and so on - so we are on the right track I feel.

    Will keep you updated with more as I have it.

    One piece of good news is that my main amp that blew a channel only needed a replacement fuse - so that is up and running again....

  2. Thank-you Doctor - good to know.


    Damn but this aint easy this recording thing. Of course being an idiot I chose a really tricky piece to record - Sheherezade 4th movement - big dynamic range,

    Tried to record it with the settings the program suggested for the volume controls and flat lined all the peaks. Finally got something almost acceptable with the volume control around 1 out of 10 - but I am still clipping the major cressendos.

    Quality wise its hard to say at this stage - I think there is something to this but the first try is hardly going to fool either me or the wife. Play through appears to affect the recording quality adversely so I am recording without which means I have no way of hearing it till its done. This means I am trying to access what is going on entirely graphically. Still working on this one.....

    Oh - and file sizes are interesting. 11 minutes of the last movement take about 500 meg of WAV, 16 meg of Org (with noticable degredation) and about 120K of the programs own file structure for the "project". Dont know how that works - but it saves the whole thing. Mystery...

  3. Finally got a new computer - a laptop with all the bells and whistles - including HD audio on board (96/24 recording).

    I had planned to use the computer with my Soundblaster Audigy 2 USB sound card (?) but that is apparently dead - plug the power brick into the wall - little light comes on - plug the other end into the soundblaster - little light goes off and no power to soundblaster. Tried another power brick- same story. Its dead Jim!!!

    Anyway - no worries - this thing has built in connectors and supports 96/24 dont it. So I connect the stereo to the computer and a little dialog box appears asking what I connected - choice of line in, headphone out, line out and microphone.

    I choose line in and it says - not supported - bugger!!!

    So I am stuck - then someone tells me that the mike in and the line in are just about the same and to try that. Try it out - sound is dreadful. About to give up when I come across this little shareware app called Rightmark Audio Analyser 6.1.1 which apparently can analyse your computer sound system (both playback and recording) and then fix it. So I download and run the app and hey presto - sounds good. Did a quick test recording from my phone output at 96/24 and it is clear as a bell. Next thing to try is the output from my phono stage and see what happens.

    Other than that a question:

    My first DVD player was an all region affair so I never looked at the region when buying DVD's. MY replacement unit (the Pioneer 575) is region 2 only and apparently a tricky thing to change - so I was stuck with a load of region 1 DVD's and nothing to play them on.

    With the computer comes a DVD writer/player so I set that to region one and hey presto - disks playable again.

    Now I notice there are a lot of programs out there that will rip and compress your DVD's for you so I can have them on the hard disk.

    Question - if I own the original DVD is it legal?

  4. Kev,

    Interesting - first Yamaha linear tracker I ever saw - who knew???

    I think most companies have flirted with the LT option over the years - should be a very different sound from the Thorens - table differences aside.

    A good test for how well an LT is performing is the 4th movement of Scheherezade - Living Stereo, Reiner / Chicago. No normal arm can play that properly as you are tending towards the centre of the record where distortion is naturally greater. LT's handle it much better and it is not a difference you can miss....

  5. Well thanks guys. Nice to be back so to speak.

    As for old recordings from the past My father in law made a reel to reel recording of my wife aged 4 singing songs and talking to her mother. Just before the machine gave up the ghost completely I managed to offload the recording onto a cassette tape (we are talking about 15 years ago). I have played that tape on this unit - works fine - but I have since backed it up again to MP3.

    Funnily enough my wife age 4 sounds almost identical to my daughter now (6).

    As for the venerable Panasonic in question it has achieved semi-permanent status in the main system. SWMBO will be the one to decide how long that lasts - but even she likes the tuner.

  6. Been a while since I last posted on here - been busy with one thing or another, but thought I would share the following:

    1. High End system - Extreme high end....

    On Saturday we had an ACA meeting at the home of one of the members. He has I think the most expensive system in the club. Heaven knows the true figure but if we say the wrong side of $500,000 - not including his home theatre you get the idea.

    Dedicated and completely treated room (hardly an inch of bare wall anywhere) with 2 enormous speakers (Avalon Issis) driven by enormous Jardis tube amps Avid Acutus TT and a phono stage that cost $50K on its own.

    Hell the home theatre had a stack of 3 Lamm amps for the front speakers alone - and a Lexicon controller / Blue Ray player along with a couple of amps for the rear speakers (4 of them - side and rear then) and a Wilson sub...cheap stuff all.

    If I say he had the top end VPI sitting on a shelf as a spare you get the idea.

    Sound was - well - rather good. Actually it was more than rather good - although not quite the best I have heard. Worth the money? Well if you are:

    a. Insane.

    b. Loaded.

    c. more of both A and B.

    Then - no.

    But one hell of an experience.....made me feel SO normal.....

    2. Defintly not high end.

    I have moved office into a small appartment in the block where the wife's brothers and parents live. Its been hell but it is done now - we also put the warehouse in there - heaven knows how - but it is done.

    Anyway there I am throwing stuff out and I come across a TT on its side next to the rubbish pile. Can't tell what it is as it is in a black plastic bag but being me I grab it and bring it home.

    Opening up the bag I discover this is not a TT at all - its a home entertainment centre from Panasonic from, I guess, the early 1970's. It has the TT, a cassette player, tuner and ..... wait for it.......8 track!!!

    So I do a big of running repairs to the obviously damaged items - including the motor for the TT which has disconnected itself from the platter. Took about 2 hours all in all. After some messing around I power it up nervously and it springs into life - without speakers attached. I dont trust the amp yet so I take the output from the headphone out into a pair of RCA's and into my pre-amp. Works. Everything (well not sure about the 8 track - dont have any of those).

    Even the needle on the record player was in fine fettle. Played a few of my less important disks to start with - now it seems good enough to play any record - not that this is particularly likely - sonically it is not the best.

    The tape player is actually quite good but the major surprise is the tuner - that is fabulous - way better than the Tivolli I used to have connected to the system.

    Anyway here I am with this enormous unit in the middle of the living room and SWMBO arrives. I am expecting a minor nuclear explosion - "Not more stereo equipment" kinda thing. Instead something of a surprise. She stops dead looking at this unit and after a pause says - "That's mine."

    It was too - back in the day - her brother had thown it out that morning as it turns out and I found it. Nearly killed him when I heard what he had done without informing me - but worked out ok in the end.

    Only downside to all of this - I tried connecting it to my speakers - disconnecting my amp from them in the process and forgot to swtich off the pre. The 2 wires on the right side touched and I blew the channel - bugger!!

    Fortunately I have emergency amps for just such an occasion so I am not without sound on the main system although it is not quite as good as the main amp which will now have to be send off for repair.

    Well - that will do for now. Now you all know.....

  7. Beckham - great player but I think we sold him at the right time (to Real a few years back).

    Now we have a player called Cristiano Ronaldo (not to be confused with the other Ronaldo that played for Brazil).

    In all probability CR will win player of the year in Europe and possibly globally. He is that good.

    42 goals last season - from the wing!!!

    Oh - and he is 23 years old (and my wife drools over him). Frankly he's all talent and good looks - I hate him - but I am glad he is on our side.

  8. You guys know about Manchester United????

    Wow - my home team. I used to be a season ticket holder back in the day.

    Been a great year for us - National Championship and the European Cup.

    As for Bose - they are like Mcdonalds - they are EVERYWHERE!!!

  9. Well I have never owned either of these tables and really have no axe to grind on way or another. I have heard both in different systems - in various stages of upgrade and change.

    Chalk and cheese anyone? Totally different approaches to the same result - namely playing a record.

    Being an idiot who did not have his camera with him at the time I do not have photos of the 2 highest end Technics TT's in Greece - both with linear tracking arms.

    The first was with a air bearing arm - I think the Kuzma actually and the second was with my own arm - the TQI 2000 from Clearaudio.

    The owner was besotted with the tables (he owned them both) and had done innumerable things to them (plinths etc.)

    The results were astonishing - I would be very nervous putting my TT up against either of them.

    Bottom line on these units (and other direct drives) - you will be VERY hard pushed to match the speed accuracy of these with a belt driven table. This gives them a tonal advantage. I have to spend more on a speed controller than this table originally cost to get even close to this.

    The Thorens is a different animal altogether. It just plays music - but takes its own sweet time to do it. Music coming out of a Thorens can be quite intoxicating. I was at a house just a few days ago with a very old Thorens and a very new high end CD player that cost about 6000 euros ($10K?).

    The Thorens simply blew the CD player out of the window. Not bad with a Denon 160 cart and a further $200 investment - directly into his old Bryston. The owner was not best pleased - he had expected his new CD player to do rather better.

    Compare those tables - you are having a laugh. Best bet would be to own both and play.

    I, of course, went an entirely different route....

  10. Talking of Stereophile I just spent most of the weekend with Bob Deutch from the same.

    He was over in Greece on holiday and attended the ACA 10th aniversary. Quite a big do all together.

    I was the main taxi driver. We had a meal on the Saturday night - a visit to a member's house and a presentation at a hotel on Sunday morning, lunch and then 2 visits to other members in the north of the city.

    All that meant I started the day at about 9 in the morning and finished around 11 at night.

    ENOUGH AUDIO - I cant even look at my stereo right now.....

    I think he and his long suffering wife enjoyed it - but I haven't heard a word since they left - I guess they are still sleeping it off....

  11. Reading this thread I realise that I have actually owned my external phono pre-amp for quite a while now (about 5 years). Mine is the Acoustic Signature Tango and I have to say I have been delighted with it.

    My first phono box was exactly that - the Project Phono box - about $70 from memory and perfectly servicable for MM carts. Sadly its MC performance was not there and as I moved into that type of cart it was essentail to upgrade.

    During a weekend from hell I auditioned 11 phono stages - cant even remember them all now - and it came down to 2 - this one and the Clearaudio Basic 2. I really liked the sound of the clearaudio - but it was quite coloured to my ears and in the end I plumped for the Tango just because it appeared to me to be the most neutral of all of the options.

    Some of the other candidates included 2 phonos from project - including one tube one, a Primare phono, the Clearaudio Phono, the Lehman Black cube and various others.

    Aside from the neutrality of the Tango I liked the flexibility - you can change most of the loading settings (impedance, gain, capacitance) and to date I have not found a cartridge I cannot drive properly. The maximum gain of 65dB has proven enough to drive carts down to 0.25 mv outputs - not tried anything less - may well work lower. Certainly with my 103 - 0.3 output I have similar volume levels to the CD player, if not slightly greater.

    Heaven knows how it compares with other newer items. Its just one of those items I no longer look at.

  12. Paul,

    Interesting take. Mine is a bit more simple - but not necessarily correct:

    I would work on the assumption that the greater the lateral displacement within the groove the more damaging to the vinyl the setup is.

    In the above example it is the mass of combination of arm, mountings and cartridge that would act to exert force on the groove wall - the wall is having to work that much harder to keep the needle in the groove.

    This would mean that the greater downward pressure (tracking weight) is actually working for you as it presents a greater force keeping you in the groove.

    Therefore - the greater the tracking weight and the lower the overall mass the better.

    This is somewhat counter-intuitive but I think it is actually correct.

    I am not sure how the compliance would fit into this equation. In some ways (where the movement from centre is low) the higher the compliance the better but at some point it would tend towards its limits and there would be a snap back effect which could be more damaging than anything else. With a lower compliance we are, in effect, forcing the motion, as far as possible, to the main bearing of the arm itself. That does mean more mass displacement but it should be a smoother motion.

    What is interesting is the looking at various manufacturers out there over the years we can see implementations that follow each and every combination of compliance, mass, tracking weight and so on - each with their own take on what is the best solution.

    All in all it is not as straightforward as it might initially appear.

  13. I am in the midst of a debate with a fellow audiophile which we have boiled down to the following:

    Which is more damaging to a record?

    Arm apparent mass plus cartridge mass plus fixings 28 grams, tracking weight 1.


    Arm apparent mass plus cartridge mass plus fixings 18 grams, tracking weight 2.5.

    We are at complete loggerheads on this one. Thoughts and reasoning anyone?

  14. Comments in italics

    To wrap up my original comments from last month... Just finished testing a new (NIB) pair of Series VI.

    First off - that ws quick - how much time did you spend on this? Not a criticism - a question..

    Plus vs Minus (lotta' minus stuff here folks...):

    Some Plus: The new equalizer works better in tuning for a room. Big Minus: There is no off/on switch!! Unless it's on a switched socket on your amp, it's on.... all the time... cannot be good for it...

    Not sure that is a big minus - my pre-amp never gets swtiched off - in fact it is true of several of my components - is there a known issue with component failure? not heard one myself but that doesn't mean much. As an aside is the equalizer powered? I was of the impression that it was not but I might be wrong.

    Debatable Plus: They come in unfinished walnut veneer, as in no oil, lacquer, etc. That allows a nice stain, oiling etc. Big Minus: the average owner could easily mess up a stain, get stuff all over the grills, etc.

    Well there are a choice of finishes - a friend of mine bought them in piano black - if you choose the unfinished veneer then on your head be it if you screw up the staining job. The grills definitely come off - would be a good idea to remove them prior to staining....

    Serious Minus: this was the second pair that they had to send me.... The 1968's headed to the shipping center and they sent the first new pair.... Veneer edgebanding separated, hot glue strings all over everything... Called, they immediately sent another pair.... new pair, new problems... also known as the DSDD syndrome ... loose grills, bad veneer; They sent me the "nuts" and two spare grills..... Their tech support/ customer service folks were very nice, and immediately addressed the problems, so that's a good thing for them (especially if this is their normal quality....). But they should not have to be doing that. The techs were embarassed, to say the least. They also got real "nervous" when I mentioned that I had Klipschorns, LS''s, H's, Belles, etc. To their credit, they handled it well though. But it was funny...

    That is bad for sure - who knows what happened. I havent seen too many straight from the factory but the ones I have seen appeared in good condition on delivery - could this be a one off or a new production problem?

    The big issue is that if someone spends $1500 on a pair of speakers, then they should be very, very careful before they consider Bose. The workmanship in assembly is horrible - very..... Fortunately, I did not spend $1500.... They gave me a very good trade in on the originals which, while they were very nice, were at the end of their useful life (40 years, and unlike Klipsch, there are no replacement drivers, EQ units, etc. except on eBay.....).

    Again - first I have heard of this - certainly a worry - but I guess there is a return policy for sub-standard items.

    The IMHO part:

    The new ones, regardless of any alleged improvements..... are still only useful in the application for which they were intended..... I had another Forum member over and we tested them in the "Wall of Voodoo". One on one, the Heresy-I's with the K-28's, E4500 and BEC's tweeters and the bone stock Forte-I's "cleaned their clocks". Used together with the Heresy's, they did the job intended - gave me a better sound stage and helped fill in some sweet spot "holes". But... that's an expensive option for a pair of speakers that has only one real use (especially when used in a room with Klipsch).

    Not sure about this - as with most speakers they are dependent upon both the driving equipment and the room. I am certain we could put them on one setup and they would appear to be better than Heresies on that setup in that room but the reverse would apply in another room on another setup.

    Mixing them with Klipsch is certainly not the intended use. These are, as far as I am aware, designed to be used as main speakers (with the option of adding more as surrounds). Setting them up to fulfil this role takes time - it does with any speaker - but in this case - with the additional complexity of setting the equalizer in combination with the postioning issues and the driving equipment issues its not a plug and play option. This is a disadvantage for Johny Average who just wants to dump them into his system and play but meat and veg to inveterate audio players such as ourselves.


    Buying new? Buy a pair of H-III's. First of all they are far more useful, and sound better. Second, the 901 workmanship is really bad. Now, I may have just been "unlucky", or the victim of Murphy's Law, but either way, I know that Klipsch quality control on a pair of H-III's will be perfect.

    Quite possibly true in your room with your driving equipment - quite possibly not in another room / setup - quality issues not withstanding.

    Buying used? For $1500 you can get a very nice pair of La Scala's, maybe some Belle's, or even a pair of K-horn's that need "cosmetics", or at least 3 pairs of minty Heresy'sIdea for a "wall of voodoo"!!

    I dont think it is ever fair to compare buying new and old as new would almost never win. It would apply equally to new Klipsch product verses old. I pair of Palladiums, for example, could yield 4 pairs of Khorns used. The palladiums may be better - but that is a lot to make up.


    They are for sale!!!Devil I'm debating whether or not to post them in the Garage Sale, but they will be on eBay in a day or 3. If, by any chance, someone is interested, they are certainly NIB (minus about 3 hours...), boxes, complete docs, unfilled out warranty cards (they would be a "gift" for warranty purposes), spare grills, spare terminal "nut", and very nice "gunstock" stained walnut, hand rubbed with Watco danish, very pretty....Wink

  15. Nice video. He does not mention is that the new bearing he is inserting is a maglev unit - which is available for any clearaudio TT.

    He also missed that the riser for the motor is actually a further isolation step - not just to increase the height.

    Now if he added the speed controler and the inner and outer rings, replaced the arm with the TQI.....

  16. Max:

    You cannot use this function unless the machine is DVD-A capable. Without going into the details, this chip is there for upsampling in order to decrease the cost of the filter required to eliminate artifacts from beyond the "brick wall." Good filters with extreme slopes are expensive. Creating a much longer slope allows for the use of cheaper components to achieve the same end. Makes for better units at lower cost.


    Thanks Dave - I kinda figured as much in that the original DVD video spec only went up to 96/24 and actually most DVD players downsample that - if they come across it - to 48/16 anyway.

    So its there - but you can't use it - choice!!

  17. I noticed that some DVD players incorporate a 192/24 bit chip for audio - my no-name unit included.

    How do I go about utilizing that with some 192/24 recordings? This player is not a DVDa player. If I record a WAV file to a DVD at that resolution how do I know if it will play back at full res or if it is downsampling it - and if it is - to what?

  18. Interesting - very interesting.

    Just as an aside the wife and I are building up to buying a couple of new laptops as ours are getting a bit long in the tooth.

    I have narrowed it down to either a Toshiba or a Sony - both of which appear capable and offer what we are looking for.

    Both also mention supporting "Hi Res" audio - but as yet I cannot find out what that means. I am hoping they will support 96/24 or better on the mother board - although if not I always have my USB Soundblaster Audigy 2 to fall back on - if I can find it.

    If anyone happens to know such things the models in question are:

    Sony VGN F231 and the Toshiba Sat P200D-120 we may well get one of each.

    Anyway - I would really like to avoid having to connect the PC's directly to the system for PLAYBACK as I think it would be a PITA - refcording is another story of course - but there I wonder how important the silent aspect would be?

    I have been told there is a device called a Slingbox that will do what I want - although again I do not know if it supports hires audio.

    Oh - one other thing - the inputs on these 2 PCs appear to be limited to a Mike in. Is that the equivalent of a Line in - I notice the soundblaster has both.

  19. "but read somewhere that Toshiba puts a cap on the audio qulaity of the audio optical output"

    Can't see how - the point of the optical out is that you pass the signal out digitally for something else to decode it. If Tosh employ any form of limiting on the audio quality I would suspect it would be in the DAC - which you are planning to bypass.

    As it happens I dont think there are too many DVD players out there that do not have optical out - so it would be a wide choice.

  20. I wonder if MaxG has ever tried cleaning his LPs with Ouzo?Hmm

    That would be no - there is other stuff besides alcohol in Ouzo that gives it its peculiar taste. Now Raki might work - closer to pure alcohol - but it might also dissolve the vinyl.....

    Might have a go one day with a record I do not care too much about.

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