Here we are. 12 years after I started my journey. Periodically we all find that we make massive jumps or shifts in our setups. Maybe your personal music tastes have changed. Maybe you wind up with noise-induced vertigo and sound sensitivity (such is my case). But alas, here I am with my latest setup. Talk about massive leaps! It likely would not have changed had it not been for a resistor in the old Bad DC-222 that finally went and took out a small chunk of the circuit board. Had it been repairable, I'd have never made any changes. I was absolutely happy with that tube integrated. I struggled for years to find anything that could compete. Just never found any winners. But then I stumbled on the Stellar M1200 and since they had tube buffers, it made complete sense to go this direction. So here we are. I am again on the hunt for speakers so I may finally make a move on Focal Sopra 3 or something comparable. Who knows, I may just stick with Monitor Audio. They have a sweet sound that I just can't walk away from. 

If you've followed my system setups you'll notice the AAD 2001s are not pictured. They are still in the room, off to the right, but not hooked up. I discovered they had no synergy with this system so the MA GS10s were immediately put back up after sitting idle in a box for years. Perfect. So I may roll with the MA Gold 300 or PL 300 II. Or I may stick with bookshelf speakers. Yet to be decided. 

Anyway, thanks for looking and feel free to leave a comment.

Components Toggle details

    • High Desert Audio John Skala Special- 1M RCA cables
    I made these. I find them to be excellent for any SE application. Served me well for years.
    • Moon Audio Black Dragon 1M SPDIF
    Also one of the first additions years ago. No need to change. Does an excellent job!
    • Mojo Audio Power Cable
    This was also one of the very first additions when I started this journey. I made a small modification of my own. But other than that, still does things that power cables do!
    • Cardas Audio Gold Power Cable
    Still does things that power cables do.
    • Shunyata Research Cirrus IC Helix XLR 6'
    No opinions formed yet. Just added.
    • Synergistic Research Tesla Apex 6' Speaker Cables
    Finally, a cable to replace my cheap, entry level Cardas cables! But in this case by leaps and bounds. :)
    • Creek Audio Evolution 100A
    Using as a pre-amp for the mono blocks. However, on its own merits, it does very well so long as you are using an outboard dac as the internal Ruby dad is not very good (in my own opinion!). However, with the Cary providing the signal, it reproduces audio very well. Excellent for those second systems in smaller rooms with more efficient speakers where critical listening isn't as important.
    • Cary Audio Xciter dac
    This one has been along for the ride since the beginning (including the GS 10s!. Produces a very engaging sound.
    • PS Audio Stellar M1200 Monoblock
    1200W each. Currently has Gold Lion 12AU7 tubes installed in the tube buffer stage. Northern Electric is, however, my favorite in these amps.
    • Monitor Audio GS 10
    2-Way Bookshelf Speakers. Modified with Cardas internal hookup wiring and additional damping material.
    • Simaudio Moon MiND 2
    Hi-Res Streamer

Comments 2

Appreciate that. It is what it is, right? Such is life. I manage. 

As for the Creek, yes! Most definitely on the list of things to replace as I can only get single ended out to the amps which accept balanced connections. I have my eye on a few. The Creek will suffice for the moment. Also looking into an all-tube balanced integrated amp as well. Really just enjoying this journey again. Was stagnant for years and wondered why I was so depressed. 🤣 


Nice little system! And sorry to hear about the vertigo that can be brutal I know but you really have put a nice balanced system together. Next step I'd recommend replacing the Creek with a dedicated preamp.


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