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 Drewster's Room

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Drewster
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PostSubject: Re: Drewster's Room   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeFri Nov 23, 2012 5:53 pm

I think my room and the Sherwood/Maggie combo have now settled in enough that the 3D capabilities of the system are starting to appear. I love you

Last night I put on Wish You Were Here


Drewster's Room - Page 2 PinkFloyd


as a test to see where the system was at.

I believe I was hearing Welcome To The Machine as it was intended by the producer and engineer. During this cut I felt transported to a future time and space into a room where I was eerily the subject of programming/interrogation by some formidable control (the Machine). I felt like I was inside and surrounded by the Machine affraid . The soundstage was huge and complete and filled my entire room (it hasn't yet gone beyond the room boundaries, but that's what tuning will do later).

Dynamics, for example the guitar riff that begins Have a Cigar, were startling. And at the end of this cut there is a white noise burst in either channel that was precisely placed at the plane of my head (or level with each ear, in other words, about 4 feet in front of each speaker effectively where the doorways are in my room) and about 4'x4' in size that was so big and sudden and threatening and real that I nearly crapped my pants. Of course I replayed it again and again... afro .

Then I put on Dead Can Dance Into the Labyrinth and the size of the instrumental and vocal images were huge, coherent and complete and again filled the entire room. This recording was made in an old church, and I could really hear the haunting qualities of the venue.

That's my update. I'm giving the system some more time to break in and settle.


jocolor jocolor


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PostSubject: Re: Drewster's Room   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeSat Nov 24, 2012 11:00 am

Hey, Drewster,

Sounds like good times in your abode. Congratulations! I probably have that Dead Can Dance CD, as I have many. I'll have to check it out. As for Pink, I only have a compilation, but it must have that particular track on it.

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PostSubject: New Source   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeTue May 21, 2013 2:17 am

Hello all,

Well, I've added a new source to my system. The Marantz NA7004 Network Player. It's discontinued, and currently available at Music Direct for $400. It plays all my music in iTunes (which happens to be all my CDs, which I downloaded in .WAV format into iTunes), as well as internet radio, over my wi-fi network. It was recommended to me by a trusted muckety muck at MD as a good and cheap music server (since it was on clearance). I've been looking for a solution to access and play all my music via computer or network, and especially for the price this seemed a good and low risk way to address it.


Drewster's Room - Page 2 MarantzNA7004pic


It is a very audiophile type design. Really overkill in the damping department.


Drewster's Room - Page 2 MarantzNA7004board1


Initially it took me a while figure out how to get it connected to my wi-fi. First I had to register the unit and then call their very friendly dedicated customer service line to get the software updated. Once I got it set up, I just let it play for over 200 hours.

Unfortunately it didn't sound so good out of the box or even after 200 hours. The bass was taut and punchy. The mids and highs, however, were very closed down. This was very disappointing. Sad I was definitely hoping for better.

You can see in the above pic the resinous epoxy-ish hardened goop spread on many of the caps. This pic was taken after my initial tuning tweaks and after Michael had taken an initial crack at it, so you don't see, for example, the three ferrite magnet RF "stoppers" that were removed from key wires and wire bundles. Evil or Very Mad

Drewster's Room - Page 2 MarantzNA7004board6

More to come....


jocolor jocolor



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PostSubject: Re: Drewster's Room   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeWed May 29, 2013 2:14 am

Hello All,

I've had the Marantz with the changes that Michael and I made in the system now for about a week, settling, along with the equipment platform that we made some changes to because the wood had expanded in the Chicago humidity over the last year. This was a unique situation where I made a number of changes all at once because Michael was in town, and we tried to get as much that needed to be done as we could in the time we had.

Basically, we took the bottom shield plate (heavy) off the Marantz, loosened the transformer from the board, unwound some twisted wires, removed some cable ties, and took off the one ferrite RF stopper that I was unable to remove before. Some undesirable things couldn't be removed, such as the resinous goop applied to some of the caps.


Drewster's Room - Page 2 MarantzNA7004board4



Drewster's Room - Page 2 MarantzNA7004board5


I can't really say for sure what sound changes go with what component tuning changes, but I can say that the sound in my room is now bigger, fuller and deeper. And the mids and highs with the Marantz are now much more open and more balanced and more natural. In fact, the tuned Marantz now comes close to the Maggie in bigness. Maybe not the same level of subtle detail or dynamics or fullness of harmonics, but much better than I expected given my initial experience with it.

I listened late into the night last night. The Marantz has really good rhythm and drive Exclamation and I kept listening to "one more song" for way too long. I was bobbing my head and tapping my toes to everything I played. Using the Remote app on my iPhone makes it so easy to play anything in my entire music collection with just a few taps, it's kind of addicting.

Can't wait to hear what the next week of settling will bring....


jocolor jocolor


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PostSubject: Re: Drewster's Room   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeWed Jun 05, 2013 8:33 am

Hi All,

I've read quite a bit about various software solutions that improve on iTunes by pirating the signal before it gets processed by iTunes, and doing a better job of it, while at the same time using iTunes' library framework. I downloaded four of these to try out with the Marantz: Pure Music, Amarra, Audirvana and Decibel. Unfortunately, I was only able to get Amarra to work with iTunes and the Marantz. The others had various problems, and troubleshooting was difficult as they only had user forums, not any customer service.

Amarra, though, definitely made a positive difference Smile . The sound was overall less digital. More rounded, full and cohesive. It simply sounded more musical and more natural and complete. My trial period ended about a week ago, and I definitely miss it.

Amarra is by far the most expensive of these programs at $180, but I may have to bite the bullet and fork out the bucks.

One concern I have is that you only get a license for one computer, and I can't tell if that means if I get a new computer, I can't transfer it to that computer. I'll try to find out that answer before I make a purchase. Even at $180 though, it's I think a necessary addition to my system now with the Marantz. I wish I could have compared the other programs, though. I did read one review that did, and that reviewer concluded that Amarra had the warmest and most analog-like sound, FWIW.


jocolor jocolor

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PostSubject: Re: Drewster's Room   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeMon Jun 17, 2013 6:13 pm

Arrived at Drewster's system late last night. After a little listening I found myself looking at the eq platform. Out came the washers and putting them in between the frame and the tuning board you could hear the direction to go in. Next step out comes the Space Cones and pennies. I started by flipping the cones point up and pennies on the point. so it goes

frame SC penny top board

Hit the play and instant clean up but weird. MG says time to sleep. I never really sleep but you get the idea. Morning comes and we have a completely filled in stage like someone took some pledge and dusted off the dirt. I'll let Drewster post a pic. It took then just a couple of wood choice steps and we have music. Platform tweaking is a huge step and tons  of ways to voice. Honestly I thought some of the sound was for sure the room but this last tweaking made the room open up "a lot", and most impressive is the clarity and attack. Oh my this is the second setup now doing this  tweaking and Wow. Back at my place though I'm doing this plus the use of the Redwood cured and treated. I did find a couple of things though when doing Drewster's  that I need on mine. BTW Drewster ended up with Redwood as well and is getting  some of the special brew I'm making. I believe this will be excellent for Bill333 too.

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PostSubject: Re: Drewster's Room   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeTue Jun 18, 2013 11:44 am

Well I have to tell you and I'm sure Drewster will as well. We are seeing a transformation in Drewsters system. The Wall is knocking down the walls at his place and as we have found some electrical things combined with platform tweaks the system has become an easy to listen to power house.

We've been taking settling breaks in between tweaks and this is allowing the system to talk. Like at my place Drewster has a writing room off to the side where observations can be made then we can go in and tweak.

I'm looking forward going home and thinking about this trip more. Many things are planted in my mind and when I hear my system I will be able to take what I have heard and put it inside of my world.

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PostSubject: Re: Drewster's Room   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeThu Jun 20, 2013 8:48 am

Michael's brief visit was very productive. While redrilling the holes on the platform made a very big difference following his last visit to Chicago, giving more bass weight and enlarging the soundstage considerably, adding first the washers and then the Space Cones and pennies between the top and base of the platform really improved the resolution of the system. Especially in the bass. There is  more music there now, over the entire frequency range. Voices filled in and sound more natural.



Drewster's Room - Page 2 Platform1



Drewster's Room - Page 2 Platform2




Drewster's Room - Page 2 Platform3



The overall sound has continued to improve. Electric bass is awesome. Very tuneful and driving and easily identifiable. I'm looking forward to this settling even more over the next few weeks.


jocolorjocolor

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PostSubject: Re: Drewster's Room   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeMon Jun 24, 2013 4:17 am

Hi All,

Well, the room has now been settling for a few days since Michael left. The soundstage remains big and is getting more relaxed.

The other thing we did when Michael was here was work with the electrical in the room, and the adjustments added a whole new level of resolution as well as freeing up the height of the soundstage and dynamics.

I had the Marantz plugged into a Shunyata Hydra power conditioner (yes, I know it's a no-no Evil or Very Mad) that my buddy from Music Direct loaned me to check out, along with the Apple Airport Express, and my room air conditioner. This was plugged into one outlet in the room, while the amp and Magnavox were plugged into a second outlet in the room. These outlets are in the same circuit. Both have been "set free" from the wall and are just floating by their wires. 

Though we were a bit concerned about making any further changes after working the platforms, we decided to remove the Hydra from the circuit, leaving only the Sherwood and Magnavox plugged in. This immediately made a substantial difference. First, we noticed that the soundstage expanded in all directions, like a balloon being inflated. As a result, some holes in the soundstage in certain pressure zones on the left side of the room became noticeable, where before they weren't. Especially obvious was how much having the Shunyata in the circuit was compressing the height of the soundstage. 

Second, the resolution took a major step forward. It became clear that some electronic haze had disappeared, and everything came into a new, greater level of focus and resolution. This was especially notable in the bass and in voices and in brass and horns. Again, another huge step toward realness and natural musicality. This was not subtle Shocked. It was an "ahhh" moment, where we recognized that this is how the music should sound, and that this quality had been missing but we didn't know it.

We then decided not to risk adding more devices to this circuit and possibly degrade the sound and so plugged the Marantz and AE into an extension cord from the kitchen, which is on a different circuit. Since I won't be using the Marantz for serious listening that will work fine. Ultimately, I'll move the Marantz and AE onto a shelf in the kitchen hallway and run longer ICs to the Sherwood. I now also have to get a long heavy duty extension for the a/c to run into the kitchen circuit.

Lesson learned: power conditioning doesn't help. It constricts the flow of energy, affecting soundstage size, resolution and dynamics, though it may create the impression of some improvement by compressing the size of the soundstage and thereby making it seem more filled-in.


jocolorjocolor

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PostSubject: Re: Drewster's Room   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeMon Jun 24, 2013 9:53 am

Hi Drewster

Yes, them conditioners seriously constrict the sound.  Some slow the sound up, others give an artificial cleaness which is simply sterile and dead.  Some are even equalized to compensate for the darkening and slowing of the sound.  On first listen these may fool a listener but like all static EQ, the effect is noticeable in the end because everything sounds the same.

Sonic
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PostSubject: Re: Drewster's Room   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeTue Jun 25, 2013 1:29 pm

Hi Sonic

I wonder if people know how much distortion they are adding to their systems when they use one of these products that are said to remove distortion?

This is a good example of the audiophile crowd introducing distortion into the system.

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PostSubject: Re: Drewster's Room   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeMon Nov 11, 2013 2:05 am

Hi Tunees,

Michael has been working with voiced redwood blocks recently, so I tried them in my system. Hoping to add some warmth and "fatness", and see what else they did.

First I tried out some untreated rough blocks, and they did add some desired warmth, especially used under the Marantz. I used them under the Sherwood, too. Then I tried the voiced, finished blocks under just the Sherwood, including under the transformer.

Boy, did they give some added resolution and space definition cheers . However, after a few days of breaking in, the system sounded like it had speeded up, so that the music was playing a touch "fast" and some body in the instruments and voice was lost. Michael and I troubleshooted over the phone, and determined that what the redwood was doing in combination with what the cones/pennies combo was doing under the screwed in top of the platform was too much of a good thing. The solution was to remove the screws from the top of the platform and let the top float on the cones/pennies.



Drewster's Room - Page 2 Blocks1



Drewster's Room - Page 2 Blocks2


That brought the system back down to earth, and there was no loss of resolution, but the harmonics that had been lost returned and instruments and voices sounded very real and complete. Bass went lower and was better defined also. Bass guitar and upright bass just sounded great.

I'll let it all settle some more and see what happens.


jocolor jocolor

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PostSubject: LTR block   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeSun May 11, 2014 12:29 am

Hi Tunees,

Just got a batch of the low tone resonator blocks to play with.

I started out placing three under each speaker. After a couple of days of settling, a general "clean up" occurred across the board. Also, a bigger, more refined soundstage and articulation of each instrument and voice in that space.


Drewster's Room - Page 2 60sOnLTRblocks


More to come as the settling continues....


 jocolor  jocolor

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PostSubject: Re: Drewster's Room   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeSat May 17, 2014 2:11 am

After almost a week now, what I heard earlier has firmed up. There is greater clarity, and more warmth without any mushiness. The bass has deepened too, with increased clarity. Everything is a little more clear, and bigger, and image definition in space is more refined and complete. Especially bass guitars. Cymbals are really amazingly detailed and complete. The low end has really cleaned up significantly, and so pace and rhythm (toe-tappingness  Smile ) has improved. A little more of the room's inherent glare at certain midrange frequencies has been tamed too.

The SHOOMDOOM at the start of Come Together on Abbey Road is startlingly articulate and sounds complete (meaning full-range).

Looking forward to trying out my remaining 6 blocks....   Cool 



 jocolor  jocolor

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PostSubject: Re: Drewster's Room   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeMon May 19, 2014 4:10 am

Hi All,

Earlier today I replaced the older LTR blocks under the Sherwood with the ones I received recently. Also, I changed the placement from one each at the front corners and one at the center rear (see pics in above post) with one at the front center and one each at the rear corners. Also the unit now is resting only on the very corners of each of the blocks.

This change still needs time to settle, but two things were immediately apparent: the soundstage filled in, so there was no empty space in the soundstage, and the soundstage extended from the front wall to the rear wall behind me. I was hearing a lot of music originating from parallel to the listening position on either side of me.  Shocked  Laughing  This was especially cool on Because on Abbey Road.  cheers 

I'll follow up after some more settling....



 jocolor  jocolor

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PostSubject: Re: Drewster's Room   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeMon May 19, 2014 11:38 pm

Hi Drewster

Sounds like the room has filled up with soundstage. I enjoy listening to a full front to back stage. There's so much more to feel and take in.


 Smile 

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PostSubject: Update from Cuenca, Ecuador   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeFri Jun 05, 2015 1:19 am

Hi Everybody,

Well, it's been a year since my last post. I've been living in Ecuador for over nine months without a music system. My father just arrived from the states for a visit with two lockers full of stuff I requested he bring that I can't get here, including a music system consisting of the MiniMod speakers and a Teac NP-H750 WiFi-capable amplifier/dac.  cheers  cheers

I got it set up very quickly and it's sounding awesome just with the speakers and amp sitting on my little table! I am amazed at how good the speakers sound having not even had a minute of break-in time. Shocked Cool Very wide and tall soundstage and just a natural musical effortless sound. And that's using my iPod directly via USB into the Teac, or with Airplay using iTunes on my computer over wi-fi.

Drewster's Room - Page 2 IMG_0479


Drewster's Room - Page 2 IMG_0480


Then I added in the tuning board from Michael and some new cones from Harold and that provided an even more relaxed and full sound. And of course neither the amp nor speakers have even begun to break in yet. I'll let the break-in continue for a while before I do any tuning of the amp. Though I may add some RoomTune Squares to the room in the meantime.


Drewster's Room - Page 2 IMG_0481


Drewster's Room - Page 2 IMG_0482


I had never heard the MiniMods before and really did not expect them to sound so good "out of the box." So I'm pretty psyched how good this simple system will sound once the amp and speakers get some break-in, the amp receives some basic tuning, and I get some stands built for the speakers and can position them properly. sunny

jocolor jocolor

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PostSubject: Re: Drewster's Room   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeFri Jun 05, 2015 3:19 am

Drewster's Room - Page 2 M1040


Harold and I had to send out a search party but we got him back safe and sound. Back on TuneLand that is. Let me give this a try  study

Hola cómo estás

¿Dónde está el cuarto de baño

más agua por favor

¿Cuánto eso cuesta

¿Cómo llegar a la frontera

That's about all I got scratch

So excited everything got there A OK Exclamation  Those mini mods are something aren't they Smile

Wait till Drewster shows you guys the rest of the place, very cool.

Cool

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PostSubject: Re: Drewster's Room   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeFri Jun 05, 2015 12:20 pm

Since I'll be touring the country for a couple of weeks, I decided to go ahead and do some basic tuning to the Teac as I will run it to break it in while I'm gone. So I cracked all the screws inside and out I could reach and removed all the cable ties I was able to reach also. There remains some cable sheaths that I'll remove at a later time. Here are some pics of the insides of the Teac.


Drewster's Room - Page 2 IMG_0484


Drewster's Room - Page 2 IMG_0485


Drewster's Room - Page 2 IMG_0486


Drewster's Room - Page 2 IMG_0487



jocolor jocolor

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PostSubject: Room   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeFri Jun 05, 2015 11:20 pm

Hi all,

Here are some pics of my apartment in Cuenca, Ecuador (before installing the current system).



Drewster's Room - Page 2 IMG_0391



Drewster's Room - Page 2 IMG_0394



Drewster's Room - Page 2 IMG_0395



Drewster's Room - Page 2 IMG_0396


jocolor jocolor

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PostSubject: Re: Drewster's Room   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeSun Jun 14, 2015 5:12 am


Hello Drewster cheers cheers cheers

Welcome back Exclamation

Once a Tunee...always a Tunee

Nice spacious apartment you got there.

Sonic
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PostSubject: Re: Drewster's Room   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeWed Jul 01, 2015 2:06 pm

Thanks Sonic.

The MiniMods have been breaking in now for a couple weeks, and they just get better sounding and more musical. Very relaxed and effortless. They seem to be a good match with the Teac, which is also breaking in nicely. Very Happy

jocolor jocolor

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PostSubject: Re: Drewster's Room   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeMon Jul 27, 2015 2:28 am

Hi all,

The MiniMods and Teac are getting nicely broken in now. And I've been enjoying the variety of internet radio available on the Teac.

Since the floors in my apartment here in Cuenca, Ecuador are thin, I can't really listen at normal or even moderately reduced volumes at night in consideration of my neighbors below. Don't know why I didn't think of this before, but I hooked up the little Topping 15W/ch class T amp/usb dac that I bought in the states originally to use with external speakers to my computer. What a difference I love you ! Using the Bose headphones (yes, Bose...) which I really like both for sound and comfort, listening to Beethoven's 9th/Haitink as well as testing using my normal test music, it's a revelation. I can now listen happily at night.

I'll let the amp/dac break in for a while before applying my basic tuning changes. So my home listening continues to progress forward cheers cheers


Drewster's Room - Page 2 DrewsterPic072715


jocolor jocolor

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PostSubject: Re: Drewster's Room   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeMon Aug 17, 2015 1:14 pm

Hi All,

The MiniMods are really sounding great now. Amazing actually. I hope to find someone to make the stands soon, though it may take some time before I receive them. Then I'll be able to get the big soundstage I want. In the meantime I put up some Squares in the room, which have really helped to clean up the sound and improve the dynamics.

Drewster's Room - Page 2 RT1


Drewster's Room - Page 2 RT2


Drewster's Room - Page 2 RT3

jocolor  jocolor

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PostSubject: Re: Drewster's Room   Drewster's Room - Page 2 Icon_minitimeWed Aug 19, 2015 12:18 am

Excellent Exclamation

You take the best pictures Exclamation Your place is sweet!

Glad to hear the tune results. Yeah I bet your looking forward to doing a stage. Remember that time we did SuperTramp and Jetro Tull live? That room was a bugger at times Laughing Some magic moments but that construction was screwy. I would have liked to have lived there so I could study it long term. I love a challenge.

Then again that was where you got the 3d wish you were here. One thing it had going for it was a great over flow sound. In by the sofa sounded nice. That place was a good example of a place responding as a whole and not just the listening area. It's sounds though like the new place may have a little more flex.

sure good to see you Very Happy

Mini Mods baby Exclamation

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