Strictly for fans of Audio Note UK (all things Audio Note UK) PART TWO

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by Steve Hoffman, Apr 29, 2022.

  1. finn

    finn Forum Resident

    Definitely didn’t see this coming. Well done and enjoy the ride.
    Chris.p.l likes this.
  2. Chris.p.l

    Chris.p.l Forum Resident

    Thanks roole!
    This is my dealer's demo pair, they've been playing for a few weeks (they still have the pink highlights of young olive wood).
    The price is somewhere between SPE HE and SPX Alnico :laugh:
    jonwoody likes this.
  3. Encore

    Encore Forum Resident

    Yeah, the electronics parts store where I bought it were very specific that the can should be kept upright.

    Speaking of cameras, I also have a simple bulb thing to blow dust off camera chips, so I will try that next time. Cheaper too--the canned air is not cheap.
    Don Parkhurst likes this.
  4. nige harris

    nige harris Forum Resident

    If they're on Demo, you won't want to take them back...

    They're the same as mine and I absolutely love them, although mine are with Olive in the High Gloss finish.
    J.Uotila, Chris.p.l and jonwoody like this.
  5. ghasley

    ghasley Forum Resident

    A totally different question for those with Audio Note components in a “blended family” with other brands of gear. Are there interconnects, mains cables and/or speaker cables that you utilize rather than Audio Note? I have a blend of Auditorium 23, Audience AU24, Audience AU24 SX and Audio Note ISIS and find that each brand/model brings a little something different to the table. What are your thoughts and with what gear are you using them?
    dunkyboy likes this.
  6. Gjo

    Gjo Forum Resident

    Los Angeles
    I mix. Partially out of necessity, and value perception.

    Speaker cable - Audio Note SPx bi-wire. I have used Audioquest Rocket 88 bi-wire and Grover Huffman Pharaoh single run with factory AN copper jumper plates. Differences among those cables was minor. The jump in price to Audio Note is not commensurate with an equal jump in sound.

    Interconnects - Source to preamp -Inakustik 2404 copper balanced. I have not tried Audio Note, but I’m interested in doing so.

    Interconnects - Preamp to amplifiers - WyWires Silver copper litz, copper shielded XLR. 25 foot runs. The length, and through-the-wall installation precludes Audio Note cable. I cannot move the preamp and sources closer to the amps.

    Power - Mix of Audio Note ISIS, and CorePower Diamond with Furutech copper connectors (have also tried Furutech silver plated copper). I don’t notice much difference, but the CorePower has slightly better detail across the frequency range.
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2022
    SetANE, jonwoody, Nomad.max and 3 others like this.
  7. SetANE

    SetANE Forum Resident

    Sydney NSW
    i have used ABBAS phono stage and found that to be a good fit with AN. Mr Abbas respects AN a lot and uses some of their components in his products.

    ABBAS interconnects - copper and sound quite a lot like Lexus i'd reckon

    A23 speaker cables - good but not as good as the ISIS i trialled (at about same price since i was using a single strand).

    A23 interconnects - seriously good but i think voiced for more interest and colour - another Lexus equivalent perhaps.
    dunkyboy and jonwoody like this.
  8. Salectric

    Salectric Forum Resident

    The Meishu Phono Tonmeister is reviewed in the latest Stereophile by Ken Micallef (February 2023).
    dunkyboy, SetANE, Musicophile and 2 others like this.
  9. jonwoody

    jonwoody Tragically Unhip

    Washington DC
    I use Jorma digital, Kondo and Auditorium23 interonnects, also Furutech power cables, my speaker cables are AN Lexus80. I currently just have AN speakers but hope to get my AN Dac back this year. My gear is listed in my profile.
    SetANE, Musicophile and Gjo like this.
  10. SetANE

    SetANE Forum Resident

    Sydney NSW
    lol: jim atkinson seems to indicate something is at the very threshold of unacceptable re: tests. micallef on other hand says of the Standard Meishu that it is the "best integrated he has ever heard".

    the whole exercise might be seen as a missed opportunity. for one i fail to see the merit of jim atkinsons dour asides (presented on a drab grey background to match the content) if his words/numbers don't tell us how good it sounds. i mean after that review they could have had a lovely aggressive Herb Reichert piece entitled "wow jim said it was marginal and yet it sounds like f***ing caramel - what are we measuring and is it useful?".

    i probably sound facetious but surely it is of interest/alarming to anyone spending their hard earned and seeing audiophile heaven that a pro reviewer finds an old tech product better than newer tech? micallef briefly refers to art dudley's jinro review where he alludes to SET sound and it's positive attributes. why isn't atkinson asked to relate his measurements to this sound? we've had 50 years of solid state technological progression and apparently stereophile find it unremarkable that a SET integrated at 8W is the best amp a pro reviewer in 2023 has ever heard?

    anyway as the review demonstrates vividly the proof is in the listening and nought else until we know what to measure and as far as I know we don't.

    speaking of listening :) last night the travelling wilbury's (debut on vinyl (reissue)) were rendered whole in my lounge room. flesh and blood and humanity. instead of being a popularity contest for me (am i a "fan" of the travelling wilbury's) it was like roaming into a live performance and simply engaging as a music fan first. that is you hear the musicians playing instead of hearing trk 1 of the travelling wilbury's debut record - that track you've maybe heard dozens of times. you listen to all of it not just the hits because here is a song by dylan you've never heard before. there is no background listening. the jinro smashes and shakes. it's speed and depth seem to have improved again. besides vinyl which is my focus for music i have been thrilled by using system as 2 channel for TV etc. listening to male speaking voices on TV has become an event. last night it was michael keaton on last episode of "Dope Sick". the old man timbre in his voice filling the room with delightful bass sounds and texture.
  11. Kasper Bergholt

    Kasper Bergholt Well-Known Member

    I just came across an Audio Note P2 amplifier - it's stated to have been produced around the time Audio Note UK and Audio Note Kondo split - would that be around 2000?

    There are some images here:
    Forstærker, Audio Note, P2, 20 W, God, Super velspillende...

    It's faceplate only says P2 - not P2 PP or P2 SE. It's with four 6n3c tubes and 4 ECC83's. To me this looks similar to the current P2 SE (four 5881's).

    The price is around $1,000 - would this be considered fair?

    Moreover - are there any specific things to look out for with an older amplifier like this? Transformer hum? Left-right volume level differences? Tear on sockets? Background hiss/noise?

    And lastly, would there be any good upgrade paths at around $300,500 - or would the money be better spent on a newer amplifier?

    Huge thanks in advance,

  12. finn

    finn Forum Resident

    It’s a push-pull unit, it’s written on the circuit board. More likely early 90’s manufactured. It has had some work done on it, alps pot not original as are the green Arcol resistors near the output tubes. Price is ok but very little can be done for the money you mention for modification upgrade work. If it was the SE version then a better prospect for sure.
  13. Morten V. Hansen

    Morten V. Hansen Well-Known Member

    In general my understanding is that a lot has happened with AN transformers (for the better) over the last two decades.
    $3-500 won't help you in terms of an upgrade there - you'd be better off buying new/er, I think - budget permitting.
    You have a P2SE already?
  14. SetANE

    SetANE Forum Resident

    Sydney NSW
    Morten V. Hansen likes this.
  15. Kasper Bergholt

    Kasper Bergholt Well-Known Member

    Thank you very much, finn. It was exactly inputs like these I was looking for.

    Think I'll pass on it and stay on the lookout for an SE (which don't seem to come to sale that often).
  16. Kasper Bergholt

    Kasper Bergholt Well-Known Member

    Makes sense, thank you :)

    I did have a P2SE but it wasn't the perfect match for my Harbeths, so I traded it in for a Sugden SE Signature, which pairs beautifully with the Harbeths. I'd like to have a second setup with some used AN-J's or Snells with a suitable AN amplifier though.
  17. Kasper Bergholt

    Kasper Bergholt Well-Known Member

  18. Dewie

    Dewie Well-Known Member

    Hi all,

    Long time reader and first time contributor, pleased to meet you all and thanks so much for the great inputs on this thread. I hope 2023 is a great year for everyone and an exciting year for Audio Note in general.

    On a personal level, I am in the fortunate position to develop a new dedicated listening room and to finally acquire my first AN setup. I have come to love and appreciate the sound and musicality of the systems I've sampled so far.
    I would love to share my initial ideas with you and to get some thoughts and considerations in this space. I'm based in South Africa, alas I don't have the luxury of auditioning many setups. My local dealer has been great, I do feel sorry for him as he's been holding my hand for almost a year while I've been searching for conviction (and funds...:)).

    The synergy between amplification and speakers has been a focal point, I've established the Meishu Tonmeister and AN-E/SPE HE as strong contenders. I'm focused on digital.
    With the phono stage not being a requirement, it possibly opens up the door to acquire the Line Silver Signature model (with AN 4300E tubes). Rabski's review on Hifiwigwam was a sort of catalyst do be honest, and I feel the upgraded transformers and dual attenuators are more than just a minor upgrade, possibly taking the Tonmeister closer to Level 4 in my mind.

    I reached out to PQ with this question regarding synergy (pairing the different Meishu's with the most "appropriate" speaker), and his response was that the standard Meishu Tonmeister and SPE HE are an ideal fit, but if I opted for the SS model, I would be worth considering the SPE Signature with external crossovers if funds allowed it, albeit far from requisite.

    My first question then, do any of you have experience with this? Whether the jump from standard Tonmeister to SS, or SPE HE to SPE signature, or indeed the aforementioned combination? Do the external crossovers make a telling difference in your experience? I haven't heard them, and I probably won't get an opportunity to audition.

    I intend to add the DAC2.1x Signature to whichever combination of above amp and speakers I select. I'd rather allow space in the digital front end, cables etc., for future tinkering and upgrading. I think especially the digital front end and source demand as much attention as the rest of the system, but to me the amp and speakers are the heart of the operation. I look more forward to the music, I don't have to get it all perfect on day one.

    Room will be 7m x 5m x 3.25m (l/w/h), or 21' x 15' x 10', with a bay window between (behind) the speakers, still allowing proper corner placement.

    Any additional considerations would be greatly appreciated. Happy listening all.

  19. Gjo

    Gjo Forum Resident

    Los Angeles
    Peter's advice is worth considering.

    If you spend less on the amplifier and speakers, then you have more to allocate to a higher level AN DAC, AN cables, and perhaps a dedicated digital server/streamer.

    Cabling is a component, too. Check this thread to see how important it is to folks. Give yourself some financial cushion for cabling, because it's likely you'll eventually invest a substantial sum into it, regardless if it's on your radar now.

    It depends on how much you want to spend for the full system: amplifier, speakers, DAC, CD disc player, digital server/streamer, cabling, etc.
  20. Encore

    Encore Forum Resident

    1. You don't write how you'll feed your DAC. But no matter whether you go for a transport or for streaming, it's good that you intend to prioritize feeding your DAC a good bitstream (i.e. analog squarewaveform). I would prioritize this over getting a higher level of amp and speakers. There's a reason AN makes different levels of CD transports, and their DACs respond to the quality of what feeds them. If you go the streaming way, be prepared to spend effort and money on things that help deliver a clean bitstream, such as good switch(es) with LPSUs and preferably a stretch of fiberoptic cable somewhere in the digital chain.

    2. I and other users have had reliability issues with the 4300E tubes. I can recommend the Emission Labs 300B XLS. My pair has just passed 4000 hours of operation and still sounds great. Their midrange is slightly recessed compared to the 4300E but cabling and preamp and DAC tube selection can ameliorate it.
    dunkyboy likes this.
  21. Dewie

    Dewie Well-Known Member

    Thanks @Gjo - duly noted re the cabling. I look forward to testing the copper vs silver options in my room. Whilst the base components aren’t as readily available for auditioning, my dealer is able to assist with many cable options. My preference has always been for a slightly warmer presentation.
  22. Gjo

    Gjo Forum Resident

    Los Angeles
    Ask your dealer for Lexus speaker and interconnect cabling, and ISIS mains cabling to audition. It may suit your preferences perfectly. will save you money to invest elsewhere in your system.

    @Encore made an excellent point about investing in high quality streaming front end components (if streaming is in your system), particularly those with good linear power supplies. It's important.
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2023
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  23. Dewie

    Dewie Well-Known Member

    1. I want to build a proper streaming setup, I hope that doesn’t derail the conversation. Sent you a PM maybe two days ago, happy to continue the conversation there re streaming specific considerations if it diverges from the spirit of this forum.

    My dealer is a massive proponent of analogue, and I absolutely agree that there is magic there that will be hard to match. However, he recently acquired a Lumin transport (U2 mini), and he is massively impressed which is reassuring. He has, among others, E Alnico’s, /DAC5 Special, so it’s a proper setup.

    I’m going to audition the Lumin later this month. I have it on good authority that some official news will drop this year with regards to the U2 and LPS, whatever that might look like. I’ve seen many posts on other forums re the significance of power supplies in streaming front ends, so this is exciting.

    2. Thanks for the feedback, I’ve only heard good things re the E4300, so this a really valuable info.
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2023
    dunkyboy likes this.
  24. Encore

    Encore Forum Resident

    Strange, I haven't received a PM ...
  25. Dewie

    Dewie Well-Known Member

    Might have been on audiophilestyle.

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