Description

I have moved to a new home we had built the music room is in my basement . The basement was finished by me and a builder friend it has a craft room for my wife a sitting room and my music room . The main area is 16 ft. Wide By 25 ft. Long And a area on the left side back of room 5 ft. Wide By 16 ft. Long. This is a nice large room I am still working on speaker and sub woofer placement for the best sound .i am also working on placement of acoustic treatments bass traps etc. there is always fine tuning and a bunch of small tweaks to work on to improve the sound ( does it ever stop ) . I am retired now so I don't think there will be any big changes to the system now unless I fall in to some big money LOL. i guess if I had some extra cash I would upgrade the Reha to signature ,maybe upgrade the caps in my power amp and upgrade caps in the speaker crossover but I am happy with the sound I have now. Music I love folk music ,Grateful Dead,classical ,johnny cash ,tori Amos a little blues , Pink Floyd, some jazz , no rap grunge or heavy metal
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Room Details

Dimensions: 25’ × 16’  Large
Ceiling: 8’


Components Toggle details

    • North Creek Music Systems Manifest
    A MTM speaker with Scan speak 8545 woofers a Aurum Cantus G1 ribbon tweeter also a Aurum Cantus G2SI ribbon tweeter on the back . This is a kit from North Creek Music Systems I had cabinets built for Me by a local woodworker finished in a beautiful waterfall Bubinga wood
    • Graham Engineering 2.2 TC
    A Graham 1.5 TC in black upgraded to a 2.2
    • Basis 2001
    A Basis 2001 in black
    • Warpspeed Passive LDR volume control
    • NAT Audio SE2SE
    A beast of a amp with 211 tubes 50 watts per channel
    • Ridge Street Audio Design Poiema 3
    The most musical cable I ever had in My system
    • Ridge Street Audio Design Poiema 3
    bi wire speaker cable
    • Ridge Street Audio Designs Alethias
    power cords on preamp and power amps
    • Benz Micro MC Ruby
    A long time favorite cartridge of mine
    • Dynavector 17-D2 mkII
    A great cartridge for not huge money
    • Solid Steel 6.0
    Beautiful stands made in Italy
    • North Creek Thunder sub woofers
    I have a pair of these they really help fill out the bottom end nicely . They have a 250 watt class A/B amp each with a 12 inch pearless driver and a 12 inch passive in a sealed design.
    • Aesthetix Rhea non signature version phono preamp
    • Dynavector DV XX2 mk 2
    • Apple Mac mini 2018
    A new Apple Mac mini as of summer 2018
    • Ultra Fi DAC
    A older  nos 24/96 D/A converter need to update this some time but when you have vinyl I am in no hurry to do so.
    • VPI Industries H-16.5 Record Cleaning Machine

Comments 37

Center
Nothing like a couple peices of vinyl to get you though hard times. lol
GREAT
Billj

billj

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Have you sold the UltraFi amps?

ejcpa

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Cool Man Cave! I want to get one of the poles for the stripper girls in my basement too!

v7sport73

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Owner
Oh more changes I just got a new amp a NAT SE2SE a tube mono block SET with 2 ---211 tubes push pull per amp 70 watts of power. This ended a 8 month search for a new amp i looked at solid state but in the end i am glad i went with tubes . I had a UltraFi 845 mono block amp after the VTL amps were sold the 845 amp was wonderful just loved it but 18 watts was never enough power for my speakers .

lake513

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Owner
The record racks came from a company called Per Madson design they have ads in stereophile but I think they are going to stop making record racks at the end of the month retirement I think.

lake513

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Nice system. Who makes the record storage racks?

philsgd

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also, if you are using apple lossless, you will notice that you are getting a bit rate of about 1000k when ripping cd's. i use xld to rip my cd's to itunes and the bit rate has jumped up to over 1400k but also uses 50% more disk. i have noticed a benefit in sound and less errors when using xld.

rbstehno

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i have had some tube dacs and now have all solid state dacs. all using coax from jitter devices. i heard the ps audio dac last year at rmaf (it was a prototype of the new 1 coming out). listen to the new audio research dac, that sounded very nice at rmaf. right now, you can go to fry's and get a maxtor 2tb raid 0 or 1 disk subsystem for $199. i got mine setup as raid 1 so the drive is mirrored with almost 1tb of capacity. easy to setup with a mac.

rbstehno

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Owner
I have used Theta - CAL - and about a dozen others I have taken home from stores or other people. The Ultrafi Musicstream has ended my search along with the Ridge Street Audio Poiema USB cable. I now have about 24300 songs most AIFF and some Apple lossless I just love this stuff. I have about 3800 records and cd's total in the collection and want more folk , country , blues , jazz and rock music you can never have too much music. I am really looking to add more folk music old and new and 70's - 2009 rock and some independent newer stuff.

lake513

Center
I'm a recent convert to the music server world also.

I use a 300Gb drive on a Toshiba laptop. I have well over 3000 cuts currently ripped from CD using WIndows lossless format.

I love the flexibility + the sound is the best I've ever had from digital source.

What other DACs have you tried prior?

Ag insider logo xs@2xmapman

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Owner
The computer music server has been upgraded with a bigger hard drive [ 1 TB ] and is loaded with 2000 cd's now . I also upgraded the DAC to a Larry Moore Ultra Fi Systems Musicstream USB DAC . This DAC has ended My search for a DAC it is the best sounding most analog like DAC I have ever listened to. The cable a USB cable from Ridge Street Audio a Poiema works just wonderful with the Musicstream it is a perfect match .I think a USB cable like the Poiema makes a huge difference in the sound I get from the Mini Mac / Musicstream DAC . I still love My analog setup but the music server is getting a lot of use as of late. The biggest change is I listen to more music for longer periods of time now many late nights getting lost in the music- a good thing. Marc

lake513

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Owner
Well here I am about a month with the Mac Mini and I have about 450 -475 CD'S loaded on a external hard drive. This computer music server thing can really suck you in I like it . I know a new D/A is in my future maybe a new PS Audio D/A when the new one comes out or the Ultra Systems D/A both look very nice. I really like the shuffle on I Tunes it keeps me playing music all day and the I touch for remote so cool. How many of you use a external drive to rip music to the hard drive or just use the one on the Mac Mini any difference ? What settings do you use in the MIDI utility I use AIFF to encode My music what setting in I tunes for importing ? I have fooled around a bit with the midi settings and it seems what sounds best depends on what CD I am playing some sound better at 16 / 44.1 some at 20 /44.1 or 24 / 44.1 or 24 / 96 ..... so many choices just trying to sort it all out ? My D/A can take 24 bit 96 Khz so I can play around with the settings in the MIDI utility input / output . Marc

lake513

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Owner
Thanks for the comments Rbstehno and Mapman; I am looking at the Van Den Hul optical cable the jitter idea is good but have to wait for funds someday. The Nipper was a great find at a store in Oakley I like it also. I now have about 250 CD'S loaded in the computer I have a new firewire La Cie 750 Gb external hard drive for storage should hold a few more songs. The hot days around here are good for sitting in the basement loading CD'S in the computer and playing music like I need a excuse for that ! I have about 100 more to load in the Mac that will keep me busy for a little bit . I think the sound is good for what I have done so far but sure it could be better there is always things to upgrade. Marc

lake513

Center
Love it, including the room + Nipper too!

Ag insider logo xs@2xmapman

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all you really need a an old mac mini (g4) with 1gb ram to run itunes for your system. what really improved the sound was adding a jitter reduction device between the mac/airport express and the dac. you would use the toslink cable going into the jitter device then coax or aes from that to your dac. big difference. then use an iphone or touch with the new remote software to remotely control the mac running itunes.

rbstehno

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Owner
Ah ; The next step in a ongoing journey just picked up a new Mac Mini computer and Samsung 19 inch flat panel display.I am just starting the adventure in to computer music thought I would jump in with both feet. I have the CAL Alpha digital to analog converter with a factory 24 / 96 mod done to it. The CAL has AES/EBU , coax and a toslink input the Mac Mini has toslink output so I am using a toslink cable 20 $ from the Apple store for now. I am just a dummy when it comes to I Tunes and this computer stuff but I must say it is fun. I have only put 10 CD'S in to I Tunes so far but it seemed to go ok so far, getting the covers of the CD'S to display in front row is cool. I think my CAL Alpha / Delta sounds a little better right now but a better toslink cable may change that ? I think it sounds good for a first effort I have been using AIFF as the code but will try Apple lossless later and see what I like. The first few steps in a ongoing journey remote control will sure spoil you I will update as I learn more. I see a couple of external hard drives and maybe some more ram for the computer in the future . I have 1 Gig of ram just sitting around so a trip to the Apple store to have it put in sometime in the next few weeks that will max out the Mini at 2 Gig. Marc

lake513

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Ya know, if George hadn't left the DIY market, I wonder how many speakers I'd eventually have lying around! The Pegasus would certainly be one of them. Maybe he'll expand his product line under North Acoustics, which would be great.

I never thought I would ever buy speakers without ever hearing them. Looking back though, I was quite confident that these would be great speakers when I put in my order. A combination of world class drivers, top quality crossovers(8 gauage coils), and especially his website, had convinced me he knows how to design a high-end speaker with the sound(voicing) I was looking for.

I'm currently running the Catamounts from a modded Denon 5910 player, Transcendent sound preamp and set otl mono blocks, and Jena cables all around. I'm also trying out a Red Wine amp and Promitheus preamp. The speakers are exceptional for jazz vocalists and piano. The Revelator tweeters are very sharp and airy, yet very smooth and natural. My Kitty Kats are surprisingly similar, but immediatly I noticed some loss of air with the D28 tweeter, and the upper mids being slighty warmer. For both sets I had extended the port a little with the straws for a slightly lower port tuning. With what I usually listen to, I don't find myself really missing a lot in the bottom end. I would consider both these speakers much more preferable to my friend's JM Labs Mini Utopias(about $10k), and the big Martin Logans he has at his store.

Only 12 Manifests??? If they were still available, it would be at least 13!

Stan


homerphd

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Owner
Homerphd ; Thanks , The Kitty Kats and Catamonts WOW great combo would like to have a chance to hear both they look very interesting. I have never had a chance to hear any of the other speakers George makes and would like to. The Pegasas speaker is one I truly wanted a chance to see and hear that looked very interesting , the Manifest is a full range speaker and that is why I went with that kit. I had owned electrostatic and planer speakers in the past and liked what they did well but also knew there short comings. I over the years have listened to several speakers with ribbons and liked the air and speed a good ribbon could display. When I saw the Manifest with two ribbons one front ,one on the back I liked the idea because the Alon 5's I own is also a dipole in the mid and highs and I very much like the Alon's . The fact that the Manifest is a two way also attracted me to the design simple crossover. I had before I ordered the kit from North Creek upgraded the crossover in My Alon 5 speaker with parts from North Creek and thought it was a big step up in sound quality. I did not change any parts value or design just moved the crossover to a box outside the speaker with the better parts from North Creek so I was getting familiar with the quality of George's parts. When I saw George was about to exit the kit business I ordered the Manifest kit after looking at as many kits as I could find on the internet and thought his looked like one of the best I could find. The speakers took a long time to break in the woofers were tight at first so the tweeters sounded bright at first. The addition of bi wire speaker cable from Ridge Street the Poiema was a match made in heaven. George uses this speaker cable and after a long break in the speakers really started to sing. I guess like all speakers they are sensitive to room placement and room treatment and room size that took a lot of work. I can now say they are more than I could of ever hoped for they are magical . Building a kit was a lot of work [ cabinets see above ] but they are so much better in every way than anything I could afford by a long shot. I am sure your Catamounts and Kitty Kats sound great do you have the Scan Speak tweeters in both speakers or George's D28 tweeter ? I think it is unfortunate that only 12 Manifest kits were ever sold a lot of people missed a great speaker for not a huge amount of money. Have you had a chance to experiment with the port tuning much it makes a big difference I think. Marc

lake513

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North Creek speakers are dynamite!

Your Manifest speakers look superb! I'm so jealous.
I built the North Creek Kitty Kats and Catamounts and think they are fantastic. I would've went for the Manifest, but cost was getting up there, and still a little skeptical about the ribbon tweeter compared to the well-established scan-speak revelators. Perhaps you can tell me, how do you like the sound of these ribbons? How well do they handle the upper midrange and dynamics?

Thanks

homerphd

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Hey Marc,

You may get an opportunity to hear a pair of Sasons in the near future. A little birdie told me a pair may be on their way to our fair city sometime soon. I can't let the cat out of the bag yet, but it's looking likely that one of our club members may have a new pair on the way sometime this year.

Enjoy,

TIC

reubent

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Thanks for the reply. Yep, if you ever hear the Sasons please post and/or email me if you care to. Thanks again.

rgs92

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Owner
The Sasons look like a fantastic speaker I hope to hear them soon. I had already ordered the Manifest from North Creek before the Sasons were ready to be sold and I discovered Ridge Street after talking with George Short of North Creek. I already had the North Creek speakers than I discovered Ridge Street cables and after that the speakers. The Ridge Street cables are used by North Creek and that is where I became aware of them . I believe but do not know for sure but I think some of the parts used in the Sasons { drivers and or crossover parts ] may have come from North Creek and Ridge Street did there own mods for there own use. I know that George Short does supply drivers and crossover parts to over 100 speaker manufactures and does crossover design work for many company's . Robert and his team are very talented as are the people at North Creek the Sasons look great and I am sure sound great and well worth the money. Marc

lake513

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Thanks for the info. Did you also consider the Sasons?

rgs92

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Owner
I was first made aware of Ridge Street by the George Short of North Creek who made My speakers. George used the Poiema speaker cables for himself on his speakers so I started looking around. I saw a ad on audiogon for a pair of Poiema biwire speaker cables just what George has so I grabbed them . I loved the sound and saw Robert at Ridge Street had ongoing sale's of his cables so over the next few months I picked up IC's and power cords each cable purchase allowed Me to get closer to the music they seem to build on each other . I now have everything Ridge Street except the digital AES/EBU cable [ Nordost Moonglow ] and the power cables to the digital they are old TG power cables . I am looking forward to changing the power cables to Poiema as funds become available . The last cable I upgraded was the phono cable and that made the Graham IC 30 cable sound grainy and muddy . The cables have allowed Me to get closer to the music and forget about the Eq. yes I like them and Robert is a great person to deal with.They do take some break in time and some settling in time also ask Robert He loves to talk to customers new or potential .

lake513

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I notice you have Ridgestreet (Poiema) cables. Why do you like it? Thanks.

rgs92

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