Your most recent system tweak, did it help or hurt the sound?

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by draden1, Dec 18, 2019.

  1. pscreed

    pscreed Upstanding Member

    Damn that’s a nice room. I think my blood pressure just went down looking at that pic.
    yodog likes this.
  2. yodog

    yodog Well-Known Member

    Added a Topping E30 DAC now using the coaxial rca digital out on my bluesound node 2i and the clarity when playing at high volume increased substantially. Also ear fatigue is much improved over the node 2i’s internal DAC.
    On_the_dunes likes this.
  3. talkingh

    talkingh Vibes Controller

    yes i think my rp8s belt is a little loose...but i wanted to upgrade the power supply...piano sounds good now on it
    doctor fuse and SeeDeeFirth like this.
  4. Making sure it runs at the correct speed is vital.
    The dynamic attack on notes is seriously affected by correct rotational speed, as is pitch.
    Piano sounding good is a decent indication, but how does it sound on sustained notes.
    timind likes this.
  5. William Bryant

    William Bryant Forum Resident

    Meridian, ID
    Thanks! You just made my wife's day!
  6. Nycamc

    Nycamc Member

    Replaced the Rega Carbon cartridge on my P1 TT with the Ortofon 2M Red. Definitely helped the sound! I'm hearing bit more zest/texture to the snares and just overall more detail and slightly more depth and "attack."

    I also tweaked the toe-in on my KEF Q150 but didn't like what I hear (I tried to discover another sweet spot but failed). It seems that with these Q150s certain toe-in angles can make the treble sound harsh. There are a couple of sweet spots that I found--one is toed quite in that you just see the outside of the cabinet, where the sound is focused and stage deep and the treble is sweet and smooth. The other is very little toe in--front outside cabinet corner about 1 inch inward vs rear outside corner, where the sound stage is super wide and pleasant for casual listening.
  7. Andy Saunders

    Andy Saunders Forum Resident

    Played around with loudspeaker positioning on my Audionote ANK/LX- instead of having them firing directly at the listening position they now fire 18" in front of the listening position, resulting in much improved sound with much tighter bass and soundstage.:)
    draden1 likes this.
  8. Onrd

    Onrd I am not a number

    I turned off Audyssey on my Marantz receiver. Wow, everything sounds three times better.
    timind, Claude Benshaul and draden1 like this.
  9. draden1

    draden1 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Des Moines, IA
    Anyone I know that runs an AVR with Audyssey prefers it off for music, myself included.
  10. talkingh

    talkingh Vibes Controller

    yes much better than before.....listen to a lot of ambient neo classical stuff so wobbly sustained notes would not be good
    SeeDeeFirth likes this.
  11. Agreed!
    Wobbly sustained notes are awful and disorienting.
  12. talkingh

    talkingh Vibes Controller

    yes was playing Kate bush last week.....she sounded like she was being drowned...had to buy the bullet and upgrade
    SeeDeeFirth likes this.
  13. doctor fuse

    doctor fuse Forum Resident

    I decided to see how far I could take a Rega Planar 3 (90s version with RB300 arm) without spending any money on it.

    I really liked the sound, and the arm seems like the best one in my collection of vintage tables (least distortion at high volumes, of difficult tracking stuff like loud timpani and clustered chords of French horns, on my ribbon speakers), but the terrible wow and flutter made it unlistenable (piano made it glaringly apparent).

    So I did the following DIY tweaks:

    - oil dampened tone arm, at the rear of the arm

    - Salvador Dali Longhorn Handlebar Moustache, on an Ortofon OM20

    - made a thrust plate for the spindle bearing, out of a piece of PDFE plastic cut from a white tofu container

    - changed the mat to a thin Mission rubber mat, to dampen the potential ringing of the glass platter, and to compensate for the extra 0.6mm of the thrust plate tweak

    - made an isolation base out of a thick wood cutting board, on three racquetball halves

    - dropped the motor onto the isolation base, attaching the motor to its own base made from scavenged, improvised parts, and attached in the Rega style, with rubber bands (they pull the motor down onto the isolation base, as opposed to the original design, where they pull the motor up, onto the bottom of the plinth. I like that this tweak keeps the Rega principle).

    The thrust plate and the dropped motor seem to have improved the wow and flutter problems (a new belt was already put on, but this didn't really help). Although every once in a while it goes crazy again. The motor might be on its way out.

    Dropping the motor really quieted the table right down. Very black, as they say.

    It is a very good sounding turntable now. Photos of the tweaks, and more details over at Audiokarma.
  14. Andy Saunders

    Andy Saunders Forum Resident

    Just taken the Van Damme Blue 6mm loudspeaker cable out and put in Van Damme 6mm hifi series and it sounds very nice indeed...….time will tell as l found the VD Blue 6mm very smooth and musical.:)
  15. talkingh

    talkingh Vibes Controller

    Today swapped my jumpers from QED Reference XT-40's to Chord Signature jumpers....much better high freqs now...super happy
  16. LakeMountain

    LakeMountain Vinyl surfer

    I read about this before, a Quantum Noise Resonator (QNR) by Telos, which is essentially a power “cleaner”. When I saw a new mini version and a money back guarantee at a local dealer, I ordered one to try it out. The Mini Quantum Resonator (450€) is said to be slightly less efficient than the full version (1200€), but a it would be lot more value for money, if it works.

    And it does work! It actually does what they describe (in reasonable English):
    “The actual listening experience to the sound system makes more sense and focus on, more precise audio clarity, the whole background is black and silence, music is enhanced with more charm and smoothness.”

    It is simply plugged into the audio power-strip. It is therefore also easy to do A/B testing, just remove it and vice versa.

    The working principle is described on their site for the QNR. Quantum Noise Resonator | Telos Audio Design . It also feels like through touch and weight that is well made.

    In fact after this very pleasant surprise I am thinking of trying the full version at some stage. For now I am enjoying my record collection all over again.
  17. Linger63

    Linger63 Forum Resident

    They look cool and I am glad you are happy but, considering their price points, I can't help wondering whether
    you could possibly get better "bang for buck" by investing in a cart/arm/phono stage upgrade instead.
    bever70 likes this.
  18. TexSax

    TexSax Forum Resident

    Houston, Texas
    I added a KAB tonearm damper to my Technics 1200M3D. What a big improvement!
    LakeMountain likes this.
  19. LakeMountain

    LakeMountain Vinyl surfer

    Yes indeed, this needs careful consideration on an individual basis. I also got a similar improvement when I upgraded to a SME IV arm and an Ortofon Cadenza Blue cart. However those upgrades cost a multitude of the Telos Mini purchase!
    Linger63 likes this.
  20. Clonesteak

    Clonesteak Forum Resident

    Kalamazoo, MI
    I changed my location of my secondary system. In changing the location of my gear the speakers changed location too. Instead of the speakers being 6 feet apart they are now 10 feet apart and sound amazing throughout the whole first floor of my house. They sound so much more open and room sound filling than before. Speaker location makes the biggest difference in how a particular system sounds more than anything from my experience.
    I also bought some new speaker wire. I went from some Monoprice wire to some Mediabridge wire and seems to be better. I feel it is more of a lateral move in sound but now I have exact same length of wire for certain and looks better.
    I also moved on from my AT-LP120 usb pre amp removed to an AT-LP5 on my secondary system and added a AT-VM95ML cartridge which are more than tweaks but I did the hardware adds before the tweaks. Really enjoying the new placement of my secondary system.
    bever70 and david1111 like this.
  21. LakeMountain

    LakeMountain Vinyl surfer

    May be the Marigo tonearm dampening dots could be of interest to you as well? See post nr 136 and onwards in this thread.
  22. Arliss Renwick

    Arliss Renwick Forum Resident

    Vancouver, BC
    I bought a Herbie's Most Excellent mat (3mm) for the U-Turn Orbit I have in my office as I'd heard good things. Shortly afterwards, I noticed how dull my records were sounding. The U-Turn is a new purchase, so I tried lots of different things (replaced stylus, re-aligned cart, different preamp, interconnect cables, etc.) Finally removed the mat and ta-da! Problem solved. Note, this is not a take down of the Herbie mat, I moved that to an old Sony direct drive in my den and everything's sounding great in there. But the U-Turn (in my current setup) sounds best with just the acrylic platter (and no mat.)
    draden1 likes this.
  23. david1111

    david1111 Barba non facit philosophum

    toronto, ontario
    I installed two isolated circuits from the electrical panel to a Hubbell 5362 heavy duty, Deep Cryo treated receptacle, and then purchased some awesome 10 awg hand made, copper tip-to-tip, power cords. So now, very clean, solid power, right to my audio components.
    Made a definitely noticeable improvement to the SQ.

    draden1 likes this.
  24. The Pinhead

    The Pinhead SUDACA ROÑOSO

    I beefed up the back of my acoustic panels with an extra layer of absorptive material, if that counts.
    Fishoutofwater and draden1 like this.
  25. jonwoody

    jonwoody Tragically Unhip

    Washington DC
    I got one of those High Fidelity MC-0.5's when they were on sale for half price. I didn't buy it blind a friend of mine has three of them and lent me one for a couple weeks. The best way to describe the effect is the system seems more relaxed sounding perhaps I'm fooling myself but I don't care things sound great.
    draden1 likes this.

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