Description

This is my humble listening room where I spend many hours before the Audio Altar. I have made my own acoustic room treatments from DuctBoard. The same thing as Corning rigid fibreglass but it has a black finish already on it. I done the whole room for $150. That included the 6inch bass traps in the corner and there's two treatments behind the curtains. After the room treatments where added the imaging was increadible. It was the best improvement I've ever heard. I didn't know that room treatments could make such a huge difference. I've also run a dedicated power supply for my CD player. The depth and width of the stage grew quite alot after that. So far I've been blessed with this system and with a friend that is an audiophile guru and bring over ICs and power cords to test out. It has so far saved me alot of time and money with searching for the right upgrades. I hope you enjoy the photos. zmanastronomy
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Components Toggle details

    • Custom 2024 Tripath
    No expense was spared in the building of this amp.
    24v battery power, Cardas binding posts, Fururtech RCA inputs. Very lively and neutral.
    • PS Audio NuWave DSD DAC

    I've heard DSD for the first time without resampling on my system today with this DAC.

    Sounds a lot better than I expected.

    • JW Audio Cryo Nova
    These are a great upgrade to my system.
    • JW Audio Reference
    These are a great improvement in my system.
    • JW Audio The Rock
    I built this rack myself. It turned out much better than I expected.
    • Gallo TR3d
    The Gallo sub is one of the only subs that can sound better than a floor standing speaker. It is so fast and clean, it's hard to make it sound bad. Integration with stand mounted speakers is too easy.
    • Elrod EPS-2 Signature
    I now have 4 Elrod signature PC's in my system. They have done wonders to my system.
    • Signal Transformer DU-2 (2000va)
    I have this isolation transformer wired in balanced mode. The noise floor droped considerably.
    I built this box to hide it.
    • Signal Transformer DU-5 (5KVA)
    I've added a second balanced transformer to my system. It's for my amp. Words can't describe the improvement it made. I am stunned.
    • William Schaefer Audio Design 4 column
    This is one very heavy duty stand. Filled with lead and sand, they weigh in at 105lbs each.
    • My Room Treatments
    Finnaly there's the treated room. THE biggest sonic upgrade I ever made. I didn't realize what I was missing until I added treatments. The imaging got so good I couldn't believe what I was hearing. If you've got a mega bucks system and don't have a treated room you're only tapping into 50% of the systems potential. I'm glad I took the step and treated my room. My meager system sounds the best it can now. I hope you enjoy the system photos and my attempt to write something. Thanks. zman
    • PorterPort Cryo treated AC outlet
    I use a dedicated AC line with a a PorterPort that Albert sent to me from Here at AG. The improvments in my system was a great leap forward. Without this outlet, I could have never accomplished what I have.
    • Custom LDR Tortuga
    Wonderfully transparent.
    • Sonus Faber Venere

    I just bought these based on reviews and I am very glad I did.

    They sound as good as they look. They didn't overwhelm my small room either. I've learned that front ported speakers are much better for a small room than rear ported.

    • Fanless PC for Server
    I've taken the plunge into Computer Audio. I'm running JRiver on my PC and have about 6tb of music to enjoy.

Comments 129

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Owner

If your looking for an affordable speaker from SF that will reach the low 30's with in room support, I would recommend the Venere 3.0.

I'm very pleased with the PS Audio NuWave DSD DAC. It outperforms the Bifrost by leaps and bounds. I'm finally hearing my SF's for the first time. :)

I've never heard the Chord DAC, but I've read a lot of positive things about it. 

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Hi milpai, To be honest, I'm using a Schiit Bifrost Gen2/Uber DAC that is known to be a little warm and polite. I'm getting a PS Audio NuWave DSD DAC tomorrow that I'm hoping to be a little less warm and address the warmth in the bass of the Venenre's. As far as the speakers fitting the room size (10ftX13ft), they fit very well. It's hard to find a large speaker that fits sonically in a room this small. I have no regrets in my choice of the Verere 2.5's. They have a beautiful midrange with a very nice top end, very lively and transparent. The bass is a little loose, but I'm sure I can get that under control with a less warm DAC.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner

I've added a pair of Sonus Faber Venere's to my system. I bought these based on many reviews and the fact that they would work in my small listening room.

They sound a beautiful as they look. Lively with a touch of warmth. The highs a well extended and very smooth.

I'm really enjoying them.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
System edited: I have made some changes toward computer audio in my system. I have to say... I like it a lot. I'm currently using a Toshiba laptop with SSD and a Music Fidelity USB to S/PDIF converter going to my Schiit Byfrost DAC. VERY good improvement from CD playback. I'm currently using JRiver and Fidelizer, the improvements are great. My 5,000 album collection is on a Synology NAS 8tb HD. Using a Linksys router for wireless transport. Sound improvements are much larger soundstage, much better separation of instruments. Clarity and decay has improved also. Looking forward to a split USB cable and a linear power supply. I'm sure it will sound great. Until then, enjoy.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
To the top.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
System edited: I've just updated my system. It's been awhile. I have to say that all the changes I've made has been in the right direction. PC Audio is coming soon. :)

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Hi Mapman, the Triangles are more neutral than the Lore I owned. The Lore was pleasing, but colored. At the time I owned the Lore I thought it was a crossoverless speaker with a cap. for the tweeter, like the Zu speakers. I knew it wasn't as soon as I heard it. It's not a bad sounding speaker for the money, but they can't compare to my Focal Profile 918's that I paid $850 for. Unless you get an upgraded finish, which is extra, they're an eye sore. Then your spending enough that there are some better used speakers out there at that price point. Sorry to all the Lore lovers if i've offended you. I'm just telling what I heard in them. If you can find a used pair for less money, it will be hard to beat them. Again, they are good speakers that are fairly efficient and worth a try. Good luck in your venture.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Hi Cal.
I don't think the DU-2 will be enough for that application Without limiting your dynamics and trancient attack. You will need a DU-5 or larger. I'd check on ebay for a used one to show up. As of today, there is a DU-7.5 on there and it would easily support a complete system without limitations. Good luck in your venture and research whatever you get very well before buying it.
John

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Hi Zeal, and thank you for the compliment.
Those are DIY treatments. The whole room cost around $250, and that includes building the frames and the bass traps.
It's Corning Mold resistant duct board.
One of my friend's a AC installer, and I noticed that the mold resistant Corning was all ready black. So I just spray painted the edges with black paint and built some frames around them on the cheap.
Have a great day. John

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
The second sub is an improvement over the single sub.
Fills out the room and the voices in my head aren't telling me where the bass is coming from :-)

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
I don't know how far the moderators will let me discuss my cables, but if you look up JW Audio here, you can research my IC's.
Thank you for your kind words.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
System edited: Added a second Velodyne Optimum-8 to my system.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
System edited: I have added a third Elrod power cord to my system. I've replaced the EPS-2 signature going from my balanced power conditioner to my amp with a EPS-3. The swap out was a positive move.
But when I took the EPS-2 that was left over and added it to my CD Player..... Incredible!!

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Mapman, I've wired both transformer balanced and it drops the noise floor a lot. It opens up the soundstage and gives a much more 3-dimensional image.
It' was a great improvement when I put one on my cd player, but when I put the second on my amp... it was stunning. Bigger improvements than adding better components.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
System edited: I've added a second Elrod EPS-2 Signature power cord to my system. It goes between my amp and my Signal DU-5 transformer. What a great product. Taking care of the AC Power is much more beneficial than I thought. I'm pretty much done with my system. Now I'll start devoting my funds to music and try to sit back and enjoy.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
System edited: I have added a second balanced transformer to my system. I use it for my amp. I was not prepaired for the giant leap forward it made to my system.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Thanks Highend.
I do listen to jazz, but I also listen to heavy rock (Tool, Disturbed, Queensryche,etc..) I like it all.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
System edited: I've added a Elrod EPS-2 Signature power cord between my ballanced transformer and my tube output stage on the Modwright Sony 999es. The improvements were a more natural soundstage and better drive and energy. I'm to the point that addressing my power supply and cords are the final tweeks in this system. I saved these tweeks for last. The improvements are not small.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
System edited: I have added a Modwright Sony NS999ES with Platinum Level Signature mods. I never knew how good digital could sound. I am very impressed.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
System edited: I have added a Atoll CD-200 cd player to my system. I guess the more money spent on the source,the better it sounds. It truely has a beautiful sound to it.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
The Triangle line is definately upstream dependent.
I would be afraid of a solid state amp in front of them.
But when you get it right, it's stunning.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Hi Albert, and thank you.
They are quite impressive in the mids and highs. The bass is not an issue, the Velodyne takes care of that.
The imaging focus is extraodinary. I put your outlet in the balance tranformer and it is superb.
The XLR's are on there way. And thank you.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
System edited: I've also added the Triangle Comete ES 25th Anniversary Limited Edition speaker to my system. I like the original so much, I picked up the 25th because of the high gloss burled walnut finnish. Just Beautiful.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
System edited: I've added a Signal DU-2 (2000va) tranformer to my system. I've wired it in balanced mode for my source. I wired it with my cryo treated 12awg solid core speaker wire and the noise floor droped dramitcally. Soundstage grew even more. (width and depth) Imaging is still pin-point. A very worthwhile upgrade.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Yes, they're 12L2's. I bought them at the same time I bought the Comete's. I put them on AGon for sale about thirty minutes after I received the Cometes. They sold in Two minutes after putting on the add.
Nothing against the Quad's, they just weren't what I was looking foor.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Thanks Hyper.
I've had Ayon Audio Spirit II, Melody I2A3, Audion Sterling and even a Virtue Audio TWO.
The Almarro has out performed all of those. The Ayon was a close second, but as far as bass drive, the A318B has every SET I've ever heard beat in that catagory. It's a very high current amp that has taken me off the amp search.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
System edited: I added a Triangle Comete ES to my system and it's much better than the Titus 202.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Sebrof. Great to hear from you. My offer still stands. You know what I'm talking about.
The Almarro and the Triangles are a match made in heaven.
It took a little getting used to the extreme speed of the Triangle.
The Velodyne has cleaner, tighter bass than the Lore's.
It's hard to believe but true.
I really thought it was going to be hard to replace the Lore, but the combo I'm speaking of is a real step forward.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
System edited: I have sold my Tekton Lore's and replaced them with Triangle Titus 202 speakers and a Velodyne Optimum 8 sub-woofer. The sound is extremly clear and open with lazer focused imaging. The Velodyne has the most articulate bass so far in my listening room. No regrets at all. I'm still moving forward and having fun.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
The responce I just posted was supposed to be an email to Ekwisnek. Sorry, I'm not trying to push my product. It was an honest mistake. I feel like an idiot.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
I went to your system and didn't see anything about the Tektons.
I do see your using Anti-cables.
I make a cable that cost the same and will crush anti-cables. I also make IC's that will compete with anything at any price. I just thought I would let you know that for very little yen I can give you a giant leep forward.
I did see you went with a PS Audio digital and a Zero surge filter. Those are nice upgrades.
I went with some Triangle speakers and a Velodyne Optimum 8 subwoofer Hit me up.
ZZZZZZZZZman

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
I'll be updating photos and info in a few days.
I went a different direction and love it.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Hifi.
I have no photos of the ceiling treatments. But their the same as the wall treatments but attached to the ceiling at a primary reflection point. I used the mirror trick.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Thanks Hifi and Timrhu for the kind words.
The room is quite small at 10X13.
But with the treatments, it has a great sound to it.
Very warm and inviting.
No reflections at all. I even put treatments on the ceiling. I didn't realize the amount of blur i was getting from the ceiling until I put a couple of treatments up there.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
I've added a second dedicated AC line with another PorterPort and also come up with a new IC that has taken my system to a depth and openess that I didn't think was possible.
I've been blessed with my budget system.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
System edited: I framed my room treatments and picked up a NAD C-565BEE cd player. I'm slowly but surely getting the room to look polished. I also made some speaker platforms to match my rack.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
System edited: Through endless hours of testing, I have come up with an IC that is the best I've ever heard. I've incorporated them in my system and love the upgrade.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
System edited: Through endless hours of testing, I have come up with an IC that is the best I've ever heard. I've incourperated them in my system and love the upgrade.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Mm1701d.
I made them You can go through the comments and I give some details about them.
Thanks for the kind words.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Always good to hear from you Albert.

Next time I'm in Dallas, I want to take you and your's out for dinner.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
It's 1 1/2 inch wooden legs with the threaded rod already in it. I just put a threaded insert in the bottom of the platform and added gold cones at the bottom of the legs.
Painted everything satin black, added the stained trim and I was in heaven. It is very stabil.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
System edited: Just built my first stand and I wanted to share my pride with everyone. It turned out so much better than expected.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
System edited: Heres an update. I've added new speakers to me syatem that is a great improvement. The full range driver is much more engaging the my previous speakers. The clarity is something I've been missing and didn't even know it. I've also added a Sony digital tuner that was very surprising to say the least. The reviews are spot on.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
A sub is not needed with the MAs. They have more than enough.
But I'll be updating my system soon. I've went the Full Range Driver route.
Sold the MAs and trying something new. Will keep you posted and updated.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
System edited: Read the reviews on the Almarro A318B amp and had to try it. Incredable.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Hi John.
The problem is shipping cost. If I could figure out how to ship them at a reasonable cost I would sell them like hot cakes. They don't need any covering because they look good the way they are. The Corning glass needs covering because they are ugly and the glass can flake off. Not so with the duct board. Get with an A/C guy that's local and see what he could get you some mold treated duct board for. Cut it yourself and spray paint the edges and it's done.
Thanks for your input. zman

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Thanks Tom,and yes, the lights are battery operated. LED light are vary efficient so the three AAA bateries will last a very long time. zman

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Hello Albert, thank you for asking.
I posted a review between the Oppo BDP-83 and the Emotiva ERC-1 and it wasn't posted. I guess here is as good a place to post the review as any.
Let me set a base line on what my intentions were. I had the Oppo in my music room since Sept. of 09 and wanted to replace it, so I could put it in the HT room. So the search was on. I stumbled on the Emotiva through my research and read alot of user reviews that seemed to good to be true.
Most reviewers that showed there setup had it in a livingroom with a lot of livingroom stuff between the speakers (TV,TVstands and coffee tables, ect,ect.) I never seen any room treatments at all. So I took the reviews with a grain of salt.
30 day refund policy? What have I got to loose ?
Ordered it on Mon. and it arrived on Wed., WOW.
First impressions where very impessive build quality. 17lbs worth of CDP. It's simply stunning!
Looks don't mean much to me if the sound quality isn't there.
I pulled out the Oppo and put the ERC on the shelf. Stacked the Oppo on top to do some A-B testing.
First thing I noticed was the bass was very strong. Tight, Fast, clean bass. The next thing was how extended the highs where. The mids where recessed quite abit. Lacking would be a better word for it. But I know through experience there's alot of caps and op/amps that need time to break in, so I let it play. Two hours later I went to check on the progress. It was horrible, No depth to the stage, etchy and confusing. I couldn't stand to listen to it. I shut the amp off and let the player keep playing.
9 hours later I went in and it was the biggest transformation I had ever heard.
The stage was deep and wide with a lot of air. The music had much more texture and weight than the Oppo.
The Oppo in comparison was thin and sibulant.
I was just hoping to find a player that was as good as the Oppo, the ERC was much better. It sounds more substantial than the Oppo.
I was very attached to the Oppo, and I was not going to replace it if the new player couldn't compete.
The ERC out performed the Oppo in every way.
I was very reserved about the ERC touting the words "Reference" in it's title, but it is truely a reference qulity player. It's been playing ever since and has bloomed into a beautiful sounding player. It's staying.
Don't be put off by it's price. The thing IS a Reference quality player.
I hope my thoughts were on a professional level, and helped someone make a decision if looking for a new player that will put solidity in there listening experience. Did I mention it's drop dead gorgeous?

zman

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
System edited: I've auditioned the Emotiva ERC-1 and it found a home.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
The bamboo cutting boards where $70. And the rest rounds it up to about $100 for the pair.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Yes I did make them myself. And thank you for the kind words.
I realized my tweeters were to low so I started looking around Lowes for nice looking stuff that I could use. The top and bottom of the stands are bamboo cutting boards and the sides are 4in x 3/4 in maple planks. I put the bottom and sides together and filled it with quick crete.
I then put the top on. I went to ebay and bought some spikes to go on the bottom and it works great. The tweeter is just above my ear and the mid-driver is just below. You will need to figure out how much lift you need before buying the materials. Thanks zman

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Thanks Timrhu, That's a product known in the air conditioning buisness as Duct Board. This kind has an anti mold treatment on it that is already a satin black. It comes in 4x10ft sheets and you cut it to size. One sheet cost me $30. It took 5 sheets to completely do the room, and do 6in bass traps in each corner. Hope this helps. zman
ps It's 1 1/2in thick.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Bigshutterbug, come on down.
Always looking forward to offering a sacrifice on the Audio Altar. I offered Dianna Krall as a sacrificial treet to the Audio Gods just a few minutes ago. See you tomorrow. zman

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Albert, your taste far exceeds my expectations. I have so many originals and don't have a turntable. I cherish the artwork that they add to my music room. I feel honored that you took the time to corespond with me. You're kind of a legend on AG. The port was a beautiful upgrade, very audible. I looked at your beautiful music room and mine pales to compare. It's really all about the music though isn't it. Nice chatting with you and I hope our path cross again real soon. zman

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
System edited: Made some changes here lately and this is an update with new photos and info. Please enjoy and comment with input. Thanks. zman

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Hellow Albert, yes, thats an original. My Mother bought that back in the fiftys. Those albums on the wall between the treatments are all 78's. I also have Little Richards very first album, Here's Little Richard. My Mother past away and I use her old albums as art. By the way, I picked up one of your Ports the other day. Should be in today. Looking forward to using it. Thank you for commenting on my system. Have a great day. John

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Jtsnead, Thanks for intrest. I bought my batteries at bateries asap. $16 each. Two 12v 8amp pr hr and I bought the charger on ebay. Razor 24v 1.6 amp charger ($15 shipped).
I have a friend thats an AC and Heating guy and I bought the room treatments through him. The stuffs called Ductboard. It's already black on one side and I painted the edges after I cut them to size. The stuff comes in a 4ftX10ft sheet but it's real easy to cut. I just hung them. They look nice and it kept the cost and labor down.

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
By the way Bhodge, The rack I'm using was only $89 and split the shipping from right here on AG. Here's the item number; 1272388030
If you have tube amps I wouldn't buy it, But if you have solid state it's ok. They look real nice and they are solid but, the mdf is not rock steady. I guess you get what you pay for. Thats why I'm in the budget minded virtual systems. zman

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Bhodge, You will realize the potential of your system for the first time. It is jaw dropping. The blurr that you don't even know is there in your music will be gone. Unless you've heard a treated room you can't even begin to grasp the imaging of stereo. I see these mega buck systems and no room treatments. You can't buy audio equipment to do what treatments will do. If you have a $100,000 system in an untreated room a $3,000 system in a treated room will sound better. If anyone disagrees with that statement it's because they've never heard a system in a treated room. Speaker placement and perfect tow in
(not just eyeballing it) is very critical. I'm glad I've influenced someone to do room treatments and I'm glad you enjoyed my humble setup. Please, when you do your room, let me know what you think. Have fun. zman

zmanastronomy

Center
Owner
Thanks Vernneal.

zmanastronomy