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Author Topic: Squeezing hi fi out of my music system set up  (Read 818 times)

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Offline bob

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Squeezing hi fi out of my music system set up
« on: April 22, 2017, 10:23AM »
Every time I look into what I can do to improve my listening experience I see $2500+ turn tables, $8000 amps and $20,000 speakers.  Basically things out of reach.  I mean I can always take a home equity loan, hire a divorce lawyer and rent a basement apartment. 

Anyways, I got on you tube and saw some videos on cheap ways to improve things.

First I heard of by-wire your speakers. I did that
Then I read about adding a o-rings to the torn arm to get rid of resonance.
Then I added a acrylic mat to the the platter to help with the resonance coming from the platter.
I spent $125 on a naoka m110 cartridge
I spent another $100 on a schiit phono stage.

To be honest I could not tell the difference.  Looked like the proverbial you get what you pay for had me in.  So I gave up and decided to enjoy what I had. Yesterday evening my daughter and I decided to listen to Elvis, Sinatra and The Beatles. Sinatra's album was good and it kind of sounded a tad better. But I figure it was wishful thinking after all the changes.  Then we switched to the Beatles.  .... I was blown away.  The improvement there was quite noticeable.  I decided to play every album I had.  About a quarter of them sounded so much improved and the others you could barely tell any difference.

Lesson here, the recording is also as important as the playback.  I always keep seeing on these high end stereo demos the same recordings used.  Now I think I may know why.  Vanessa Fernadez for instance is an all time favorite
« Last Edit: April 22, 2017, 10:28AM by bob »
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Online Postal Bob

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Re: Squeezing hi fi out of my music system set up
« Reply #1 on: April 22, 2017, 02:01PM »
Quote
Every time I look into what I can do to improve my listening experience I see $2500+ turn tables, $8000 amps and $20,000 speakers.
Hire a house band to play in your basement, you'll save money.  :D
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Offline bob

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Re: Squeezing hi fi out of my music system set up
« Reply #2 on: April 22, 2017, 06:59PM »
That would be the ultimate audiophile set up

Lol
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Offline bob

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Re: Squeezing hi fi out of my music system set up
« Reply #3 on: February 07, 2018, 10:22AM »
So I have discovered flac files ... my sweet Jesus they sound good and just as good or better as my vinyls playing minus the surface noise.  To be fair my Vynil playing setup is less than $1k.  So maybe if i spent $18-35k in a real audiophile turn table, amps and watnot I might not feel the same way.  But actually playing flac lossless music files turned my budget system into something else.  I now look at digital recordings in a different way.
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Online hoodfu

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Re: Squeezing hi fi out of my music system set up
« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2018, 10:45AM »
I did all this home theater stuff around 2000 when I was single and flush with cash. I got the 4 or 5 grand a piece speakers etc. I also went to all of the home theater shows in NYC when they still had them. The ones today are a shadow of what they once were. The reality is that with digital lossless technologies, the point of diminishing returns starts rather low. I was in a home theater store out east a few months back getting a tweeter replaced (yay 3 year old who thinks it's a button!) and I asked about various parts of my setup. Could I get better sound if I did this or that. After diagramming everything out for them, they shrugged and said: Sure, you could give us lots of money but there would hardly be any difference. Ironically most of their clientele spends money on integration boxes and less on high end equipment as more people are into watching things on their phones instead of with big speakers. People like us are a dying breed.

Online Wile E. Coyote

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Re: Squeezing hi fi out of my music system set up
« Reply #5 on: February 07, 2018, 11:18AM »
Sure, you could give us lots of money but there would hardly be any difference.

https://hometheaterreview.com/why-do-audiophiles-fear-abx-testing/   


That aside, a hobby is a hobby, if a $5k speaker (or gun) makes you happier than a $1k speaker (or gun)... Splurge & Enjoy!!

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Re: Squeezing hi fi out of my music system set up
« Reply #6 on: February 07, 2018, 11:32AM »
That's a good article. Something to note about that kind of A/B testing, is that "quality" is rather subjective. When I was shopping for my speakers, I spent months on and off with my brother and friends at the home theater store listening to all the different high end brands. The differences between the best ones weren't about what you could hear, but rather what kind of tones they highlighted. I liked the B&Ws because they were great at fleshing out the mid range while so many others tend to leave it out and go to accent the high or very low. I forget the name of the other major brand at that point but it definitely had a high range bias.

Online Wile E. Coyote

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Re: Squeezing hi fi out of my music system set up
« Reply #7 on: February 07, 2018, 11:41AM »
Exactly!  During my brief stint in life as an "audiophile", I too did my own AB testing in store and picked what I liked the best (within my budget).   


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Re: Squeezing hi fi out of my music system set up
« Reply #8 on: February 07, 2018, 12:06PM »
The hobby thing is very true. Plus we all have out own individual hearing.
Bob can attest to the pile of stuff I have, to me it sounds good. Maybe not so much to others, but it makes me happy. I designed and bulit my my mains and sub, hand picked all my components, several times, the system was at one time tri-amped!  Ya know, you are never really done!
Lossless is way better than MP3's but I love my vinyl, even with the scratches and pops, LOL
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Offline bob

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Re: Squeezing hi fi out of my music system set up
« Reply #9 on: February 07, 2018, 12:25PM »
I think that coming from the low end in terms of quality to something affordable and border line decent is substantial enough for my untrained ears to be impressed with. 

For these klipsch speakers the midrange is an issue.  Their horn is doing double duty as a midrange driver and tweeter.  For rock and pop music where things are loud they are perfect.  Switch to Jazz and airy vocals and not a big fan.  So I bought a dedicated horn for the midrange and a compressed twitter driver.  Got croosovers for them both and connected them by-wire to the speakers.  I understand how this affects the load the receiver now sees, buy my onkyo handled things like a
A man.   Now where did I attached these drivers..?  In the wall...lmao. ... yes even in the audio arena Guapo gunsmithing applies.

Now for Jazz it is a delight 8)

when I played those flac files ... my headed exploded with joy
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Offline bob

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Re: Squeezing hi fi out of my music system set up
« Reply #10 on: February 07, 2018, 12:32PM »
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Offline bob

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Re: Squeezing hi fi out of my music system set up
« Reply #11 on: February 08, 2018, 01:35PM »
Downloaded more flac files... I am not sure I care much for vinyl now ... lol..

I will keep my small collection and turn table.  Thank god I did not sell the farm going that route.  Right now I have an old laptop playing flac files and outputting to my monoprice cheap tube preamp ... via its 35mm headphone jack... the wow factor is there.  I ordered a USB DAC for like $30 ... more curious than anything... don't think I will need it.

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Offline bob

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Re: Squeezing hi fi out of my music system set up
« Reply #12 on: February 11, 2018, 01:06PM »
so I was playing my flac files from my pc.  I started looking for DACs.  then I started looking for things that could store my flac files and play them back without my pc.... Needless to say things started getting up there price wise.  then I remember that I had one of the external drives that you just connect to the network and show up like a file server.  It is a drive that you use like a local cloud server and share it everywhere.  Because I did not trust the software I stopped the cloud software and blocked all the outgoing ports in my router/firewall.  I was only using it as local network file server.   As such I put my recent purchased flac files into it.

This morning as I continued my search it dawn on me a memory of a feature on my receiver.  I kind of remember this music feature that would search for music on the network.  I went downstairs and went through this feature and to my amazement it found the drive, connected to the folder where the flac files were and with excitement I clicked on play on the first file showing.  And My ears jumped with happiness.  I was playing my music through my receiver and I had spend nothing to make this happened.  I had all that was needed all along.

I have gigabytes of free space on this drive to boot.  Oh it is on!!!
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Re: Squeezing hi fi out of my music system set up
« Reply #13 on: February 12, 2018, 11:35AM »
Nice!!
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