Description

My "All Out Assault" on two channel reproduction started back in 2009 with the acquisition of Wilson Audio W/P 8's. Prior to getting those speakers my system remained pretty much static from 1994-2009. It was a Mark Levinson system consisting of No.27.5, No.36, No.380s. Speakers were Aerial Acoustic 10t's. It was a digital only system. After the W/P's came the PS Audio Perfect Wav DAC/Trans. This was my first time being exposed to hi-rez playback. It only took a few hi-rez needle drops for me determine that analog was the way to go for best sounding audio. 

System tour on YouTube.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?list=LL8mwfiB_0vQtdPPbBJv0EMQ&v=pd1JYxBZS3s




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Components Toggle details

    • American Sound AS-2000 Turntable
    Belt driven (Pabst Capstan) super high mass turtable. It is the absolute state of the art in vinyl spinners. Using NOS SME 3012R’s as primary arms. Knife edge bearing from the early1970’s. Original NOS cables for the arms too. Total weight...approximately 500lbs. Air platter, no bearing.
    • TechDAS Air Force One
    Ripple free air bearing, air suspension and vacuum hold down. Running 12" Graham Supreme rear slot and Phantom Elite (Not here yet) with Nordost Odin wiring and tone arm cable. (DIN->RCA)
    • Clearaudio Master Innovation
    Belt-driven magnetic drive. Ceramic Magnetic bearing.
    • Technics RS 1500
    Nortronics Pro 1/2 tack, head wired out to external tape preamp (King/Cello NAB/IEC, 15 ips). All inferior Technics electronics are bypassed.
    • Otari MTR-10 RTR Tape Deck
    2 Channel, 1/4" tape, head wired out for use with King/Cello tape preamp.
    • King/Cello Tape Pre IEC/NAB
    adjustible Hi Freq. EQ
    • Studer A810
    2 units...one fully stock, the other with a JRF Magnetics repro head upgrade.
    • Otari MX 5050 Bll-2
    1/4" two track RTR player/recorder
    • Lamm Industries LP-1 Signature Phono
    The LP1 Signature is a vacuum tube preamplifier that employs a high current pure class A operation from input to output.  No loop feedback is employed.  Other features include:
    • Audibly neutral power supplies (one for each channel) featuring full-wave vacuum rectifiers, choke contained filters, vacuum tube high-voltage regulators, and solid-state low-voltage analogue non-switching regulators used as the heater supplies
    • Three separate inputs for MM and MC (two inputs) cartridges
    • All amplification stages utilize high transconductance super low noise high-current vacuum triodes
    • Very accurate RIAA EQ network

    Each preamplifier is carefully handcrafted of the finest materials and hand selected top quality parts like military-grade DALE metal-film resistors, RCD wire-wound resistors, BOURNS multi-turn potentiometers; ELECTROCUBE, CORNELL DUBILIER and ROEDERSTEIN film capacitors; high frequency switching grade CORNELL DUBILIER electrolytic capacitors; HAMMOND chokes; gold-plated NEUTRIC connectors; and military-grade low-noise long-life vacuum tubes.

    A custom-designed massive damping panel installed in the preamplifier unit significantly reduces all types of mechanical vibrations which, in turn, leads to a more extended, coherent and natural bass reproduction.
    The LP1 Signature features a custom-designed super-low noise power transformer.

    • Allnic H-5000 DHT Phono
    LCR. Adjustable EQ, direct heated triode phono stage. 1950-1960 RCA Miltary spec 5U4G tubes used for rectification. Voltage regulation via Takatsuki 300B tubes.
    • Allnic HA-3000 Head Amp
    Nuvistor tube based moving coil head amp.
    • SME 3012R Phono pick up arm
    1970’s NOS with knife edge bearing...not the shit gimbal bearing design that came out later.
    • Graham Engineering Phantom Elite 10 inch
    Grahams new reference arm with improved bearing, wiring, bearing house, arm tube
    • Graham Engineering Phantom II Supreme
    Fluid damped, uni-pivot design. 10 & 12 inch arm wand x 2.
    • Clearaudio Universal Tone Arm with VTA Lifter
    • Nordost Odin Supreme Reference Cabling
    2-1.25 meter DIN to RCA phono cables. 1-1.5 meter XLR for phono stage to main pre. 1-5 meter XLR for main pre to amps. 1.5 meter RCA, 4-2.5 meter Power Cords. 4 meter speaker cable.
    • Nordost Valhalla Reference DIN phono
    Used with Graham arm.
    • Koetsu Coralstone Platinum
    understated beauty of the petrified coral bodes…so rare is the material that cartridges in this guise will only be available in the US, priced at $15000 with production unlikely to exceed a couple of dozen…stunning naturalness and presence…a sense of substance and stability to the image…big and rich and vibrant…There's a rightness, an immediately convincing quality to its presentation that draws you into the music. Specifications: Body: Coral Stone Type: Moving Coil Coil Wiring: Silverplated Copper Magnet: Platinum Magnet Cantilever: Boron Cantilever Output Volts: 0.3mV Frequency Range: 20Hz to 100kHz Channel Seperation: 25db/1kHz Inner Impedance: 5 Ohm Channel Balance: 0.5db/1kHz Recommended Impednace: 30 Ohm Weight: 12g Compliance: 5 x 10-6 cm/dyne at 100 hz
    • Koetsu Tiger Eye Platinum
    Koetsu Tigereye Technical Data •Body: Tigereye •Type: moving coil •Coil wiring: silver-plated copper •Magnet: platinum •Cantilever: boron •Output: .3mV •Frequency range: 20Hz-100kHz •Channel separation: 25dB/1kHz •Inner impedance: 5 ohms •Channel balance: .5dB/1kHz •Recommended impedance: 30 ohms •Weight: 12.5 •Compliance: 5x10-6cm/dyne at 100Hz
    • Dynavector DRT XV-1t
    Urushi bamboo body. Dynavectors statement cartridge.
    • Ortofon MC A90
    Two units...One still Sealed for the future.
    • Shelter Harmony
    Shelter Phono Cartridge
    Output Voltage: 0.5 mV at 1Khz 5 cm/sec.
    Weight: 8.5 grams
    Channel Balance: within 0.8 dB at 1Khz
    Tracking Force: 1.4 to 2.2 grams
    Stylus Tip: 1.6 X 0.3 mil Line Contact Nude Diamond
    DC Resistance: 15 Ohm
    Recommended Load Impedance:
    Step Up Transformer - 10 to 30 Ohms
    Head Amplifier - within 100 Ohms
    High Gain EQ-amp - within 47K Ohms
    Compliance - 9 ìm/mN
    • Benz Micro Gullwing SLR
    MOMC
    • Lyra Olympos - Mono Phono Cartridge

    One of 4 mono versions ever made. SL single coil design. Output: .15mV

    Truly the Holy Grail for mono record playback.

    • Ikeda 9TT - Mono
    LOMC
    • PS Audio PerfectWave DirectStream DAC

    Stereophile Recommended Component 2015

    Class A+ Stereophile rated DirectStream DAC converts any digital input format, such as PCM or DSD to a pure DSD stream and outputs near-perfect analog directly to your power amplifier or preamplifier. Whatever the format, whatever the sample rate, DirectStream is a pure DSD based solution that fulfills the promise of a high-resolution analog performance standard the originators of CDs promised over 30 years ago. Hear what’s been missing in your music for all these years. If you know the sound of music and instruments, and want to hear what’s been missing on your discs, then this DAC is right for you.

    • PS Audio PerfectWave PWT
    Buffered Memory player. 24/192 capable
    • Pass Labs XS Preamp - Dual Chassis
    It is a large two chassis preamp built in a true dual mono arrangement. The circuit board materials are optimized for performance in each area, a power supply circuit board has different requirements
    • Pass Labs XS-150 Dual Chassis Monoblocks
    Class A solid state dual chassis mono-blocks Xs These are Pass Laboratories ultimate expression of Power Amplifiers the perfect blend of science and visceral emotion. The successor to our already lavishly praised and well regarded Supersymmetry patent. Every technical effort has been made to assure exceptional specifications, among these: Separate chassis for lower electromagnetic noise Power supplies with greatly enhanced storage capacitance Banks of redundantly parallel high speed / soft recovery rectifiers Improved high frequency noise filters Larger / quieter transformers Improved passive decoupling Lower power standby Input impedances of 200 k-ohm balanced with negligible capacitance These amplifiers will drive any load, while being driven from any source. If there’s a more emotionally satisfying amplifier anywhere, we’re not aware of it. Xs 150 / Specifications Gain (db)26 Power Output /ch (8 ohm)150 Power Output /ch (4 ohm)300 Maximum Output (Amps)30 Input Impedance,(Kohms)200k Balanced, 100k single-ended Power Consumption (W)500 Number of Chassis2 Dimensions (W x H x D)19 x 11.5 x 21.5 (each) Unit Weight (LBS)130 + 100
    • Wilson Audio Alexandria X2.2
    almandine black metallic with Black Grills
    • Table Stable TS-140
    Active Isolation table
    • Millennia Media NSEQ-4
    Profesional Level Parametric Utilized via tape loop on main pre when needed. EQ World’s first all-discrete, true differential Class-A input buffer/amplifier Selectable balanced or unbalanced input Greatly improved 3rd generation FSA-03 all-discrete EQ amplifier Improved output stage, no muting required (as with Twin Topology) True hard-wire bypass when EQ not selected Upgraded power supply leading to improved sonic performance
    • PS Audio P5 Power Plant
    Clean AC power Regenerator for source components only. Amps plugged directly into wall.
    • Stillpoints Ultra 5
    Used under Pass XS 150 amps, Wilson X-2.2 speakers and Clearaudio Master Innovation turntable.
    • Stillpoints LP1
    Used on top of all music chain components and as record weights for both turntables.
    • Stillpoints Ultra SS
    Isolation/Vibration control component footers
    • KL Audio Ultrasonic Record Cleaner
    The best ultrasonic record cleaner. Uses only distilled water.
    • Entreq Silver Tellus
    Signal grounding box. I use two...one dedicated to main preamp and the other dedicated to the phono preamp.
    • Entreq Atlantis Grounding Cables
    Two pairs for main preamp, one pair for phono stage
    • Clearaudio ACCUDRIVE
    Battery power supply for Clearaudio Master Innovation turntable.
    • Western Electric 422A Rectifiers
    Purchased NOS (1960 MFG Date)Used for rectification in the Allnic H5000 DHT phono preamp
    • Takatsuki 300B Tubes
    Hi-End 300B tube made in Japan. Used for voltage regulation in the Allnic H5000 DHT Phono preamp. These make a big difference on the performance of the tubes in the gain stage.
    • Torus Power RM-15 Plus Isolation Transformer
    2 units....one for each power amp channel.

Comments 277

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Center
Owner
Between the Lamm and Allnic. Lamm seems to get the best characteristics of solid state (super low noise) with the romance of tubes. The Allnic is a bit warmer, richer in its presentation. The noise floor only slightly above the Lamm. I like listening to both equally. I do have more gain with the Allnic which comes in handy with carts in the .15 mV output range. The EQ feature is useful on the Allnic...especially if you collect original UK Decca Records and or original Mercury’s from 1957 and 1958 before they fully adopted RIAA EQ.

rockitman

Center
Owner
I need to mount a cart for the AF1 and will provide a comparison. I can tell you that music sounds better on the AS.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Thanks PCosta !

Yes Bill. It was great hanging and learning from David. Fortunately I brought him by my new place where he implored me to set the system up in the great room upstairs rather than the rectangle in a dark basement like I was planning to do...

rockitman

Center
Owner
It’s been a while since I updated my system. The American Sound AS-2000 turntable was added over the weekend. My vinyl spinner journey has finally ended. Puts my other TT’s to shame....not even close in the listen8ng experience department.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Lamm  LP1 Signature Phono added to the phono stage stable. It makes a nice alternative sound to the Allnic H5000-DHT phono. As such I will keep both units active in my system.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Sorry...my post got cut off. 1st two digits on date code are year of mfg

rockitman

Center
Owner
Hi Albert. Best tube by far and no exaggeration. I could open a tube store for all the different rectifiers I own for the H5000. I bought mine on eBay. The date code is a 4 digit number. The first two digits are the year of manufacture. I have ones made in 1960. 


 Here a search of current listings. 

http://www.ebay.com/sch/Vintage-Tubes-Tubes-Sockets-/64627/i.html?_from=R40&_sop=16&_nkw=Western+Electric+422A&_trksid=m194&ssPageName=STRK:MEFSRCHX:SRCH

rockitman

Center
Owner
Received the Western Electric 422A rectifiers yesterday and had a good listening session last night. The tubes exceeded expectations by a large margin. As with the many other tubes I have tried in the Allnic H5000, there have always been compromises, such as great bloom, decay and bass extension at the expense of softer bass and or slightly rolled highs. Not the case with the WE's. Best grip I have had on the bass, best treble extension, sweet mids and perfect bloom and decay times. They are worth every penny for the H5000 DHT. Phono playback is now on another level of reproduction that I have not experienced before.

rockitman

Center
Owner


rockitman

Center
Owner
System updated. Latest tweak is a pair of "Holy Grail" NOS Western Electric 422A rectifier tubes (Domino style gray plates) made in 1960 which are really a substitute for 5U4G's. They are 5 volt, 3 amp filament current tubes I am going to use for rectification in my Allnic H-5000 DHT phono stage. I should receive the tubes by the end of the week. I hope this is the end of the road. For voltage regulation I am using Takatsuki 300B's. Note for Allnic 5000 users...make sure you have the heavy duty resistors installed in order to handle 3 amp filament current.

rockitman

Center
Owner

System Updated mostly

YouTube video system tour link:

https://m.youtube.com/watch?list=LL8mwfiB_0vQtdPPbBJv0EMQ&v=pd1JYxBZS3s


rockitman

Center
Owner
Albert,

According to KS, the gain level for H5000 is exactly the same for xlr and RCA. He says both output options should sound exactly the same from a circuit standpoint because they are both transformer coupled. The toggle switch is to switch the ground to pin 1 on the xlr connector. Any noise difference will depend on the quality of the RCA or xlr connector in question.

rockitman

Center
Owner
I ordered 2 from your comments and I have to agree with your experience including transparency, extension ... TS NOS 5U4GB WAS my favorite but Tele is amazing. I ordered 4 more plus Thorsten is a great guy to deal with.

Its amazing the variety of sound flavors you can get by rolling the rectifiers. I am using RCA mil spec 5U4G's from the late 50's currently.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Allnic H5000 DHT phono output connection. What are users of this phono stage using...XLR or RCA outs ? I think XLR is transformer coupled since there is a switch that must be turned on for XLR as the unit is single ended design. I have been using XLR in the past and just tried singled ended rca outs. I think I like the sound better. Arnie, Albert...what do you guys use ?

rockitman

Center
Owner
Hard to explain in words, but it does everything the xp30 does but better.....of course diminishing returns kick in at this level. I am happy with the upgrade and it was worth the higher price of admission....to me anyway. I think there are added synergies using the xs pre with xs amps. Think more refined and extended over the xp30 which is still a fantastic preamp.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Knghifi... I think you will be very pleased. If you like large orchestral stuff from RCA Living Stereo or Mercury, you will be blown away. That genre really shines with this grounding stuff.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Knghifi,

Don't think of it as a waste. During my short 5 hour demo I used two Apollo cables and two Atlantis "silver cables". In my system, the Atlantis sounded considerably better for reasons I don't understand. The Apollo cables are also silver. The Atlantis cables have two spade cable branches vs only one for the Apollo. I suspect 2 branches has more capacity to drain away ground plane grunge.

rockitman

Center
Owner
So I finally drank the "Clean up your ground" kool-aid. I am glad I did. Here are some obsevations I posted in another forum.

72 Hour Entreq Observations:
1) dramatically reduced system noise floor.
2) Music erupts from the absolute black abyss...very noticeable and welcome.
3) Challenging leading edge transients never go over the edge... sibilance and any remnants of glare from aggressive, large orchestral passages seemingly disappear.
4) Music is clearer, less distorted and I didn't think I had any distortion. It just sounds more real and less recorded.
5) Perceived depth and width of the sound field is also significantly enhanced. Music blooms w/o borders/restrictions and each instrumental, percussive and vocal element space is better defined.
6) Recorded ambience and note decay is more realistic.

The setup as mentioned before are two Silver Tellus boxes and 6 Atlantis eartha rca to spade cables. Two cables (L&R) for phono input, two cables (L&R) for main preamp input and two cables with separate Tellus box for power amp inputs..rca. I also have noticed that any other source device plugged into the main pre benefits...along with digital sources. That is it for now. I would like to thank again Bill Demars from Beauty of Sound for getting this stuff in to try.

rockitman

Center
Owner
I still have it. My Pass XP-30 sounds better though. I did really like the 380's volume control.

rockitman

Center
Owner
11-14-14: Maplegrovemusic
How much improvement do you hear with the skyline diffusors ? I am thinking about adding diffusion to my room . And what is the fire extinguisher for ?

They add dramatically to the perceived depth and width of the sound stage with minimal absorption. They made a big difference in my room. The fire extinguisher is there in case something wanted to start on fire. Not really worried too much about it..lol

rockitman

Center
Owner
11-14-14: Boonetrc
Really nice looking set up! On your UHA Tascam, does it have record heads, or just playback? Thinking of sending my BR-20T to them for some UHA upgrades. Cheers.

My record and erase heads are disconnected and only used as tape guides. If you go for the hot-rodded playback model only, performance is enhanced according to Greg Beron at UHA

rockitman

Center
Owner
That is interesting, you can adjust meter zero point and illumination ? Are the screw access holes labeled M and L ? The blue led and meter white light can be dimmed ? thanks in advance.

rockitman

Center
Owner
They should be right at or a minute before 12:00. I fear there is something wrong. Contact your dealer soon. They will probably need to go back to Pass. I would not let the dealer touch them inside.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Peter,

I had a great time hanging and listening to a variety of music with you and David. It's nice to get opinions and learn from people with experienced ears. Cheers !

rockitman

Center
Owner
Hi KMccarty,

The UHA is still breaking in. It is hot rodded and only offers IEC playback eq with the stock record and erase heads having been disconnected. There is no way to run a burn in cd signal to it to expedite quicker break in. I maybe have 40 hrs on it. Compared to my Technics 1500 nortronics head wired to a king/cello repro pre, the sound is more transparent with better micro detail. Dynamics also excel. The bass is more extended and more importantly has better coherence through it's range...no mid bass bump. I am happy with the machine as it handles tape better and safer than the rest of my decks and no side of tape, tape shedding. Whether it is my studer, technics, otari's, they all tend to flake a little oxide off presumably from the tape sides going through the guides. No such issue with the UHA...it's path is pure and smooth. I will comment more on it's sound after I get more time with it.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Hi Dev,

I am using a recently acquired Lyra Olympos mono for the rear 12" Phantom Supreme. Mono records have never sounded so good. My other mono cart on the CA table is a Ikeda 9TT. The Lyra kills it in resolution, transparency and frequency extension. I use a Dynavector XV-1t and a Koetsu Coralstone on the Elite 10" arm in the main slot. actually the Coralstone was in the rear slot and when I went to replace it with the Lyra, I noticed I had snapped off it's cantilever. It is going in for a complete rebuild at Koetsu for a cool $4,500.00. Tough lesson, so to make a long story short, a Tiger Eye is filling in. Two very distinct sound favors. The XV-1t seems to be a bit faster and more extended in the bass region. The Koetsu is no slouch. I enjoy them both.

rockitman

Center
Owner
System edited: Main system pics revised

rockitman

Center
Owner
Hi Peter,

while I feel there is good merit for cable looms, I feel IC's are the most important to keep the same. Power cords and speaker cable not so much. I will not be switching to MIT IC's. I have no provision to deal with the heavy boxes in my system and the Odin IC's are fantastic. I plan on using the MIT speaker cable for a while. If it proves to be the cable I like best, I will probably sell the Odin speaker cable.

rockitman

Center
Owner
It has been awhile since I updated my system info and pics. Latest purchases have been a United Home Audio Phase11S Reel to Reel machine w/outboard power supply.

I also upgraded my mono phono cart to a Lyra Olympos. I hope to have it installed on my 12" Graham Phantom supreme on the Airforce One TT tomorrow.

In other news I finally have stopped rolling rectifiers on my Allnic H5000 phono. My tube of choice is early 1950's JAN spec RCA 5U4G. These tubes have a plate current of 3 amps so the Allnic needs to be recent production or has had the PS resistors upgraded to handle the current. This tube far exceeds the performance of any tube I have used....5Y3, GZ 32, GZ 34 and GZ37. The GZ37 is my second favorite followed by the blue print JAN 5Y3 favored by Arnie and Albert on this site. I did a back and fourth comparo the other night with the 5Y3 and the 5U4G's. There was really no contest, the 5U4G's give a much more extended presentation with superior bloom and decay compared the the 5Y3's.

Finally, I switched my speaker cable from Odin to MIT MA-X SHD. The easiest way to describe the difference...Odin, sitting 10 rows back from the stage performance, MIT you are on the stage and enveloped by the music. Too very distinct presentations. The MIT really shines on bass extension and depth of soundstage.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Things are sounding very good Thesaint519. Thanks for the kind words. Looks like you have a mighty fine sounding system yourself.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Yes Albert...H5000 DHT. Don't waste your time and money on Bybee. Big disappointment in the end.

rockitman

Center
Owner
My rectifier of choice for my Allnic is a 1953 JAN RCA 5U4G...3 amp plate current, DHT.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Some follow up with Bybee sound purifier bullets. The long of the short, they are inconsistent sounding and tonally shift. I first noticed the issue with my phono stage...thought it was unique to that equipment. Switched them to my tape pre...sounded good for a while then the tonal shift. They mysteriously lose bass extension and over accentuate the upper mids through treble. A most unpleasant situation. I started to wonder about the speaker bullets. Bybee says once you pull them, you will want them back. I found quite the opposite. A $3,000 tweak mistake. Live and learn.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Thanks for the heads up Number 95. I hope you are right. Fingers crossed :-)

rockitman

Center
Owner
H5000 PS repair update:
I heard back from David Beetles. Apparently my diode install was not thee problem. I re-installed the 300B's backwards. I can't stand the pins on them as they are easy to mis-orient. Another lesson learned.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Hi Mribob,

I tried the RCA bullets first. I use them for my tonearm cable into my phono pre. It sounds better with them than without. There is a considerable breakin period required. When I was not listening, I played a cd on repeat through them 24/7 for about a week. The effect is hard to describe. It is really about coherence. The music flows with greater ease and the bass region seems more integrated. The same type of effect occurs with the speaker bullets. They still have a ways to go before they are fully broken in. The best way to hear their effect is to use them for awhile then pull them out. I have not pulled the speaker bullets out yet to see what things sounded like before them. I plan to do so in another week or so and will post my impressions.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Not yet. I am hoping soon.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Currently under audition are Bybee Super Effect Interconnect/Phono Bullets. I have to admit that I was skeptical. While they will need some significant burn in, what I am hearing so far is startling. There is a significant increase in bass to midrange coherence, better defined bass and an increase in extension. The sound stage width and depth has significantly grown. I am using these out of my Allnic HA3000 moving coil headamp. I wanted to try them with my moving coil inputs on the Allnic H5000 phono, but since the rca's are recessed into the back plate, the rca male does not make adequate contact since the tube after the rca is too wide. I am going to see if they can add 1/4" in length to the rca diameter tube. Based on my audition so far, I may be trying the speaker bullets.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Well I think I found my favorite tube. Mullard late 60's O getter, brown base GZ37's. Maybe it has to do with the higher current. You need to have the upgraded heavy duty diodes installed. Something I botched on my last unit. I made the cardinal sin...soldering iron not hot enough and I overheated thee circuit. With these tubes the sound erupts and expands with a voracity I have not heard with this unit before. Everything is more extended, tighter and more dynamic. I now prefer transformer input to head amp/MM input. Rectifier tubes make all the difference.

rockitman

Center
Owner
#99,

It will be a few more weeks. No specs. I would imagine they will be very similar to the Supreme, although the Elite arm tube is of a bigger diameter, different wiring and the bearing is also improved. That is all I know.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Allnic service:

All I can say is unbelievable. I screwed up my unit (mistake of a too cool soldering iron)and they are sending me out a new power supply immediately with the new heavy duty diodes already installed. Once I verify all is well, I will simply return my broken unit. I am much happier now as I will have it by end of week, versus a few weeks waiting for repair. Allnic takes great care of their customers.

rockitman

Center
Owner
WARNING!!!!!!!!!
Change diodes at your own risk. I seemingly de-soldered the stock diodes and soldered in the heavy duty diodes. All seemed well until I reassembled the unit. During reassembly, my finger touched something in the circuitry and shocked the hell out of me. The unit had been unplugged for an hour. My finger was even blistered. So I plug the unit in and the meter on the left channel doesn't even light up. The right channel did light up, but the meter was far to the right. Perhaps the meters need to be re-calibrated for the heavy duty diodes ? In any event it appears the unit needs to go in for repair. Damn !!! I received my GZ37 tubes today, so that motivated me to put in the new diodes so I could check GZ37's out. Back to the Pass XP-25...Damn again. :-(

rockitman

Center
Owner
Center
Owner
So I tried NOS late 50's Phillips/Holland made GZ32 big bottle (shape of 300B)rectifiers last night. They have a spacious sound, but are a bit loose on the bass definition. I like the GZ34 F31 Valvo's and F32 Mullards better. The best tube so far is still the German made Tele's (Navy Tubes)from the late 60's with a bottle similar in shape to a GZ34 but is about 1/4" bigger in diameter. It also uses the full octet of 8 pins instead of the usual 5. I suspect the 3 additional pins are dummies and are there to secure the tube in the socket better than the 5 pin. Next week I should get my Mullard GZ37's to try. That will be the end of the rectifier tube test odyssey for this phono pre.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Thanks for pointing out the difference in operating voltages Jet. I am not sure what it all means as it relates to change in sound. I need a crash course on electronic circuits.

rockitman

Center
Owner
These may be a game changer. First listening session very positive. The bass & midrange seem much stronger, more slam, bolder than any GZ34 I have tried. It almost sounds like I added a well integrated sub. Get them while there hot.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Telefunken-GZ32-5V4G-CV593-NOS-late-60ies-super-rare-German-Navy-tubes-/201041212057?pt=Vintage_Electronics_R2&hash=item2ecefd7299

I have come to the conclusion that I will probably never settle on a favorite rectifier, although this may be it. It is nice to have the option of such different sound presentations by rolling these tubes. Perhaps GZ37 will be even better ? I plan to solder in the new heavy duty resistors to handle GZ37 current this weekend, just in time for their arrival (Mullards) next week.

rockitman

Center
Owner
The GZ32 Telefunken small bottles arrived today. I also have 1950's big bottle GZ32 tele's made in Holland. First up is the small bottle german made tele's. They are warming up now. :-)

rockitman

Center
Owner
Email sent Albert. Thanks.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Keep me posted Albert. If you talk with David or KS in the meantime, ask them about the possibility of a custom version, namely a full tape loop controllable from the remote and a change out of two RCA inputs to balanced xlr inputs. I only need one RCA input for my king/cello tape pre.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Christian,

I have the latest version Allnic DHT preamp and the new custom Kron tubes for it are on the way from KS Park.

If you want to demo it I can arrange.

Is this the L5000 DHT ? What are your impressions compared to the L3000 ?

rockitman

Center
Owner
Thanks Robert. The Pass XS is not a lock, although from a financial standpoint it would make the most sense as I would trade in my Pass XP30 and XP25 phono towards the purchase price.

rockitman

Center
Owner
I received a shipment of backup tubes from Allnic, namely Kron 242's and Marconi NOS HL2K. My shipment came with the new heavy duty diodes that will allow for use of higher current rectifiers like 5U4GB and GZ37. Once I figure out where the diodes go, I will install them and continue the quest for the ultimate rectifier for the Allnic H5000 DHT phono.

rockitman

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Hi Albert,

David sent me that pic yesterday. Pretty impressive. I'm not sure if I will go tube for amplifiers...but it certainly has me thinking...

rockitman

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I may be interested, especially if KS can incorporate a tape loop. Those new lady pleasure MONO's A-5000 look cool. Maybe I will run both Class A SS & Tube....depending on my mood/music selection of the day.

rockitman

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02-22-14: Knghifi
Rockitman,

When are you planning to demo Allnic L5000 DHT preamp?

David Beetle is trying to convince me buying one so will be very interested in your results.

I took my "Under Construction" sign down years ago so on MAINTENANCE mode now. MAINTENANCE is more expensive then initial construction just like all the public sector jobs. BIG DIG #1. LOL!

The pre is a possible consideration as long as KS can make a full tape loop option for me, rather than just tape out. I require a tape in so that I can use my parametric eq when necessary, mostly for live digital recorded music...

rockitman

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My latest rectifier roll has been the MULLARD GZ34 F32 OO getters (Blackburn England). I'm guessing a mid 1960's tube. This tube compared to the Phillips/Valvo F31, has a bit more slam and harder grip on the bass. The Valvo may have a little more treble extension. They are very similar in many ways to each other and the construction looks virtually identical. I expect to receive the GZ32 Tele's soon. It will be interesting to see how GZ32 compares to GZ34's.

rockitman

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Albert,

I don't think the fat metal bases will clear the counter sink on the H5000 chassis, meaning the pins won't go in deep enough. If you have one lying around, see if it fits. I'm guessing it won't.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Here's a link for German Navy spec Telefunken GZ32. notice the smaller more rugged bottle. I ordered 4, looks like he has more to sell.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Telefunken-GZ32-5V4G-CV593-NOS-late-60ies-super-rare-German-Navy-tubes-/201041212057?pt=Vintage_Electronics_R2&hash=item2ecefd7299

rockitman

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Allnic 5000 DHT rectifier rolling continues. I confirmed with KS Park that GZ32 rectifiers can also be used in the units. They are 5 volt, indirect heated with a 2 amp filament current. As such I bought 4 NOS Telefunken GZ 32's made in Germany. I have still have not tested my GZ34 Mullard Blackburns since I have been so pleased with the 1958 Phillips/Valvo GZ34's.

rockitman

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I hope under construction comes down soon. :-)

rockitman

Center
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Looking forward to your impressions. They are the closest sound to the older metal based GZ34's.

rockitman

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HI Christian,

Have you had a chance to listen to the Allnic H5000 with the Philips Valvo GZ34 rectifier tubes? If so, any initial impressions?

They are the tubes for me....the entire frequency range sounds better than any other tube I have tried. While I do have some Blackburn, English made Mullards coming in F32 series, I doubt they will be as good as these 1959 F31 Phillips/Valvo's Holland made.
Tube world express still have some.
http://tubeworldexpress.com/

rockitman

Center
Owner
Hi Peter,

I will be considering the Pass XS Pre along with the Purity Audio Design Ultra series Tube pre. It will be a spring project. I have not ruled out the Allnic L5000 DHT preamp, especially if I can get "tape in" jacks in addition to the tape out jacks (already offered) so I can have a complete tape loop for EQ use when needed.

rockitman

Center
Owner
System edited: Current System pics added.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Hi Dev, The difference with the TS-140 is obvious. More transparency, lower noise floor (Which is already amazing) and clearer more defined low to mid bass. It is a no brainer if you want to maximize the AF1, imho. I use the HRS TechDas base on top of the TS-140. The elite arm will come in January hopefully. The 12" Graham Supreme with Koetsu Coralstone in the rear slot sounds great.

I plan to update pics and impressions of my component changes soon. I am looking forward to no more component changes. With the turntable at least, I have achieved that.

rockitman

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Hi 95,

It's been a while since I heard the A90 and even longer for the Shelter. I feel the Shelter Harmony is closer to the Koetsu than the A90. The A90 seems to do everything well, great air up top, sweet mids but with a bass that is a bit leaner than that of the shelter or Koetsu. The A90 is a bit more audiophile/hi-fi sounding whereas the others...still audiophile seem to be more musical to me. I will be setting up my A90 again soon, but not on a Graham, rather a Clearaudio Universal arm. Since my system has changed quite a bit since it was last mounted, I will share my impressions again on how it stacks up against my Koetsu Coralstone.

rockitman

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Thanks for the compliment Robert. I'm getting close to the finish line...hopefully. :-)

rockitman

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Ken Kessler's AF1 review from Brit mag Hi-Fi News..
http://www.absolutesounds.com/pdf/main/press/AirForceOne_HiFiNews_June2013.pdf

These reviews were done with the original hybrid air and gel bladder suspension. The current production which I have is an air chamber. I am trying to get more specifics if in fact it's a bladder or piston with gasket type arrangement.

rockitman

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speaking of tubes...I am salivating over the notion of getting my H5000 in the near future. The final missing piece in the reproduction change...well almost..lol

rockitman

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I am using the 12 " Graham Supreme in the rear slot connected via Nordost Odin phono cable and Koetsu Coralstone cart. I won't have the Graham Elite 10" in the main slot until late Novemeber most likely. This turntable is blowing my Clearaudio away in every possible category. I did not think the improvement with the TechDas would be so dramatic. It's sounds more like a SOTA reel to reel machine versus a vinyl spinner. The way music erupts from a completely black and silent background is breathtaking.

rockitman

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Hi Dev,

I have the 7075 duraluminum platter. I may try the stainless one down the road, but they are quite costly for the experiment.
http://www.techdas.jp/analog_01.html

As far as Lamm goes, I know they are beautiful sounding...so to are my Pass XS 150's. They will leave the Lamm's in the dust when you comes to low end dynamic impact and grunt which I like for rock material. The new Lamm's are almost double the cost of the XS amps. I am truly happy with the Pass. Next up is the new phono stage on order...the Allnic h5000 DHT. I should receive it in the next couple of weeks.

rockitman

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The TechDas was finally setup today. Bob Graham was over to deliver my Graham Supreme 12" arm and verify my setup. All went smooth. My first impression was the dramatic drop in record surface noise, damping of pops, ticks to a far greater degree than with my Clearaudio. What followed next was an explosion of dynamic content. Music erupted...jumping off the groove like I have never heard before ...much more noticeable compared to my other table. The bass is far more articulated and extended. The density of the music fills and pressurizes the room significantly more than my other table. It really sounds much closer to tape than I would ever have imagined. This table is in another league. I will be updating my photos in the near future.

rockitman

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I will be ordering the H5000 Monday. It should complement the TechDas nicely.

rockitman

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Owner
System edited: Added TechDAS Air Force One turntable. Still waiting for my Graham arms, so no opinions on playback yet.

rockitman

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Thanks Rockitman, I like what you wrote, and it sounds like more than a safe buy and worth the price, true? Does it compete with higher priced phono pre's?

IMO it does, save for the very best that cost 2 to 3 times as much. If I thought it was lacking in any real way, I would be using something else. That does not mean that I won't try the ARC ref 10 or the Ypsilon down the road...maybe even Lamm's new reference.

rockitman

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Hi Jason,

I think you will really like the XS amps. Give them a few hundred hours breakin before they are at their best. I no longer think about amps since acquiring them. They are here for the long haul.

rockitman

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Hi Dave_72,

The XP-25 is an excellent phono stage that has the most loading flexibility with convenience. The front dial adjustments make it very easy to change loads on the fly. There is an auto mute circuit when making the change so you can leave the volume up a bit when changing load values. The sound is excellent. Top line tube phono pre's may give you a bit more sweetness if that is your desire.

rockitman

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Hi Peter. The all out assault is almost over. :-) I'm keeping my X-2.2's for years to come. The pre (XS) is also on the target list but probably not till next winter. I don't want an early production unit. I will be able to run the TechDas into my same XP-25, so I may do nothing with that unless Pass develops a XS Phono.

rockitman

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Owner
Latest addition to the System is a Table Stable TS 140 active isolation table. I am using it under my Clearaudio Master Innovation. The improvement in sound has been nothing short of stunning.

In addition to my latest Stillpoints binge, I bought 7 LP 1's for the tops of all components and amps. I placed Ultra 5's as my new feet for my Modded Technics 1500 RTR deck. The bass became tighter and better delineated. Overall a very solid improvement for a RTR machine.

Next up, a second turntable. the TechDas AF 1. It will be a couple months before that arrives.

rockitman

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Rockitman,

It's hard to aim at perfection when the target is constantly moving but I would say you have been tracking it with a laser like quality. Nicely done.
Onemug

Thanks Onemug. The latest addition are Stillpoint Ultra ss isolation footers under all my main components. I need to upgrade my pics as the stereo is configured somewhat differently than pictured.

I am considering a "Table Stable" active servo controlled isolation platform for my turntable. Probably costs $11k USD so I am still chewing on the concept.

http://www.herzan.com/products/active-vibration-control/ts-series.html#STANDARD FEATURES

rockitman

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There are currently no Siltech cables being used in my system. I recently switched from Nordost Valhalla to MIT MA-X SHD speaker cables. Nordost are not even in the same league. Thanks for your Siltech rant though. I find it quite amusing.

rockitman

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Hi Dctom,

I haven't had the Shelter on the table in a while. It Is an excellent cart and I see myself using it again down the road. Currently I am running the Ortofon A90. I like my Koetsu Coralstone best of all my carts though.

rockitman

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Owner
What would you say the difference is between the 2 and 3 box line preamps? And between the 1 box and 2 box phono preamps?

The main difference is that the multi box units sound better. They are more refined, dynamic and quieter. It is really as simple as that.

rockitman

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Hi TJF,

I am 3 days in 24/7 burn-in. These cables/networks are a revelation. I cannot see how any single wire type speaker cable can compete with what these cables offer. They are truly transformational with regard to the system sound.

rockitman

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Owner
So the latest change...Valhalla speaker cable is out of the system. Due to it's high inductance, it turns out it is not a good match for solid state power amps. I hear it is a great match for tubed electronics. With Valhalla my system was too lean in the mid bass region and too forward in the treble. I confirmed this by switching back to my old Siltech LS-188 speakers wires. Now the mid bass is back and the treble has backed off and is more coherent with the rest of the frequencies.

Today I ordered MIT Oracle MA-X Super HD speakers interfaces. I suspect they will elevate the sound to where it should be given my component mix.

rockitman

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Owner
The XA series all have a similar sonic signature. When you go up in watts so does your headroom. I had XA 100.5's previous to my XS 150's. The were more than adequate for powering my Alexandria's at 94 dB sensitivity. It's all about how efficient your speakers are and how big the room is that dictates optimal amp power selection, IMO...

rockitman

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Hi bigpond,

I have not heard the continuum....would love to someday. I am immensely happy with the master innovation. It is so quiet, resolving and speed accurate. I use a laser tachometer to measure speed and this table oscillates only a few hundreth's of a rpm at 33.333 or 45.000. I never heard the master reference so I cannot offer an opinion. It's a shame this table hasn't been reviewed yet.

rockitman

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Owner
02-04-13: Bo1972
I hope you can arrange to borrow a pure silver interconnect like the More expensive Kimber or Audioquest.

I already own Siltech Classic Anniversay 770i. They are pure silver. Very nice presentation. I'm sure their Royal Signature line is even better. I won't spend that much money on wires. It is not necessary. I like the Valhalla's better in "my" system as such the Siltech collect dust.

rockitman

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02-04-13: Peterayer
Christian, Now that you have had the XS in your system for a while, could you elaborate on the difference between them and your old XA100.5? Did you ever go back and forth between them or did you sell one when the other arrived?

I did not do a/b switching between the XA's and the XS. The XA went back to my dealer when the XS's were delivered. The change was obvious. Anything the XA does the XS does much better. The bass grip, midrange and treble performance excels over the XA series. The presentation is smooth and seemless and is more liquid sounding (like tubes) than the XA. The depth and width of the soundfield is significantly increased. Is it worth 4 times as much money as the XA ? Only you can decide. It was for me. I could not be happier with my amps.

rockitman

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02-02-13: Dave_72
Very cool system. Do the Pass Labs amps run hot?

yes they do (pretty warm) as they are Class A biased.

rockitman

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Thanks for sharing your experiences Bo1972. I don't have that sound issue with Valhalla in my system. I love the tonal balance I have. The sames wires in different system "WILL" sound different. Better for some, worse for others.

rockitman

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It is a very good phono stage for that price point. I do recommend the ACCU+ battery power supply option. It makes a big difference in reducing noise. I still have mine, but it's boxed up. My Pass XP-25 is a superior & much more flexible phono stage as it should be for 3 times the cost of th Balance+ with Accu battery power unit.

rockitman

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System edited: Added links to pics large size at top of system description

rockitman

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Hard to imagine they could improve the XP-30,XP-25, but you never know. If I had one word to summarize these amps...Expolsive would be it.

rockitman

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Hi Peter,

I think it's more than just moving up in power. My speakers are 95 db sensitivity. The XA 100 bias meters barely moved. I will post more impressions and pics over the weekend. I could easily lived happily ever after with the xa's until I heard the xs's.

rockitman

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Owner
The XS-150's are finally in place. So far, the sound has been glorious. They are big and heavy and give off quite a bit of heat. The soundstage depth, scale, imaging, transient attack and note decay are excellent. They are very musical and natural sounding. You would think you are listening to a class A tube rig but with the power and bass grip only SS can deliver. Are they worth 4 times the price of the XA100.5's ? For me, yes!!! TheXA series of amps don't reach the level of refinement that the XS series do. I'm sure I will have more impressions when I get more listening time.

rockitman

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Owner
I haven't listened to my system for two weeks. The cast on my right hand makes vinyl playback tricky. I think I will get them in by weds.

rockitman

Center
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XS-150's look great still boxed up in my garage. They have been there a week as I am still recovering. Hopefully one of my friends will help me get them installed early this week. I feel like a kid seeing my big wrapped x-mas gift unable to open it until Christmas. I hope that day arrives soon.

rockitman

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Thanks guys. I hurt myself over the weekend and am confined to crutches. It will be a few days before I can install them. Hopefully I can find some help for lifting

rockitman

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Monday 8/13 is the big day. 680 lbs palletted shipping weight !!!

rockitman

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Pass XS-150's ordered today. Should have them w/in a week and a half. Very excited !

rockitman

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Thanks Peter. I am getting rid of my XA 100.5's and replacing them with the dual chassis XS150's. I should have them next week....:-)
Wilson and Pass are a great marriage. Probably better than mine...lol

rockitman

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System edited: System component description/pics updated.

rockitman

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Hi Peter,

I did not. I'm not sold on impedance matching network boxes, especially when one size would not fit all. Valhalla is neutral and fast amongst other desireable sonic traits, so I went with it...

rockitman

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The final piece (speaker wire) was ordered today. After long deliberations between Siltech Royal Signature and Nordost Valhalla...I went for a 4 meter pair of Valhalla (shotgun) spade to spade.

rockitman

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Koetsu Coralstone Platinum cart arrives 6/22/12. Thanks Albert Porter ! :-)

rockitman

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System edited: Added new pics showing the Wilson Alexandria X-2 Series 2 and the Millennia NESQ-4 Parametric EQ that I use when the source mastering dictates. It's a modern day Cello and allows precise adjustment via my listening position. I now use Element Signature Titan Ag (6 nines) silver interconnect for the long run of the EQ to my main preamp. Two pairs, 13 feet each with Cardas Rhodium plated XLR's. They sound excellent and hold their own with my Nordost Valhalla, Tyr and Siltech 770i cables I use on source components. I connect it via a tape loop so I can one click disengage it from the sound chain with my remote.

rockitman

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The Alexandria's arrive today !

rockitman

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06-02-12: Zerv
Can you recommend someone to do the retrofit on the Technics 1500? Thanks.

Contact Charles King (Chris Moynihan referred you)...from King/Cello Tape preamps. He made my tape pre and did my head block mod for the technics 1500.

607-432-0528

rockitman

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W/P 8's are leaving my system (frown). They are being replaced June 8th with Wilson Alexandria X-2, Series 2 in Almandine Black. I can't wait. (smile)

rockitman

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05-29-12: Thankful
Rockitman how does the PS Audio P5 AC Re-generator perform in your system? I have the PWT and PWD MKII as well. Nice system.

It's great. Whether it sounds any better, different than the Power Plant Premier it replaced I don't know. I use a P5 for all the source components and use individual PPP's (1 for each monoblock).

rockitman

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Owner
05-22-12: Kmccarty
Very, very nice system. Can you compare and contrast your reel-to-reel machines? Also, how do you like your Adona racks? Do they provide good isolation?

I still have a Techincs 1500 deck with a pro Nortronics 2 track repro head that is wired out directly to an outboard tape preamp (King/Cello). The consumer playbck electronics are not very good, so that is why it is done this way. The Studer A810's are stock. They sound very good and have a very robust dynamic sound about them. For ultimate fidelity, the Technics with the outboard preamp wins by a bit over the Studer. The tape handling isn't as good. One fast forward/rewind speed...full out. With the Studer you can slow rewind way down to reduce tape shed. So I use them for all rewinding.

The Adona racks are great. Very well built and solid. I use them on a poured concrete floor...My basement that is carpeted.

rockitman

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Thanks for posting in my system thread Ortofon. I'm happy the record has finally been set straight.

rockitman

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Thanks Dan,

I need to update this gallery with my RTR stuff. Just bought my 4th RTR deck today...Studer A810 with output electronics updated.

rockitman

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Peter,

I am very pleased with the Graham. I have lost motivation to spend $8K on another arm at this time. RTR has been hogging my focus as of late...

rockitman

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01-29-12: Bigpond
Hi Rockitman, How is the Graham compared to the Clearaudio Tonearm. Kind Regards Bigpond

The Graham Supreme beat the Universal in both sound quality and VTA adjustment precision. The Graham's spirit bubble level on the pivot tower makes all the difference. Getting a base VTA (perfectly level) with the Universal is hit and miss...with the Graham, I get it right for every record I play within 5 seconds. I fine tune, if necessary by ear from the reference level position established by the Graham bubble level. I would buy a Graham again over virtually any pivoted arm available.

rockitman

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I have recently delved into reel to reel after gaining access to 15 ips dubs of some studio master safety dubs. I have 3 machines now. Technic's 1500 with a Nortronics 1/2 track head wired out to my tape preamp (King/Cello), a Otari MTR-10 with it's repro head wired out and a stock Otari MX 5050 that I am keeping stock. In my opinion, RTR tape is the top of the heap sound quality wise as long as the tape source sound quality is there (15 ips master safety dubs, ect.). My turntable still beats quite handily any 7 1/2 ips pre-recorded tapes and as such, I have stopped wasting my time and money purchasing them at ridiculous prices on ebay.

rockitman

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Hi Kevin,

I do not have any acoustic measurment tools but may look into them. A diffuser in the middle of the wall behind my speakers may be in the future. My room has a few more absorber's since that last photo's shown here along with the addition of Reel to Reel tape machines. I plan to update my system photo's sometime in the near future. Thanks for the nice comments.

rockitman

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Owner
01-02-12: Hatro
Hi Rockitman,

can you be so kind and tell me where you bought the tonearm base for the Phantom. Is it custom made?
With the tonearm base which I bought from Clearaudio the tone arm is sitting much too low.

Thanks vm in advance and a happy new year

Helmut

Hello Helmut,

I purchased my tonearm arm board via Musical Surroundings (Clear Audio & Graham US Distributor) who then did the deal for payment through a retailer. Are you using a clearaudio innovation table ? If so, the standard Graham compatible arm bopard is the same thicknesss as the standard clearaudio arm compatible board. Height is determined by the pod height that the arm board affixes too. Clearaudio can aslo provide various arm board pod heights. Speak to Joe at Musical Surroundings. He is very accomodating.

rockitman

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^^ Calloway...I ordered/paid when first available, hence my update to my system info here. I have not received it as of yet. I did get my supreme hi-fi tuning fuses that I plan to use when I put in the new board.

rockitman

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The Clearaudio Master Innovation is in the house. It is providing a glorious musical experience. I will share my impressions in more detail after I have had it a bit. Here is a photo album I put together of the assembly process (29) pics.

http://gallery.rennlist.com/gallery/view_album.php?page=1&set_albumName=album850

rockitman

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^^^ Hi Peter,

I have not owned the XP-20 or XP-15. Previous pre was a Levinson No.380S. The XP-30 and XP-25 are staying. I'm in love with the XP-30. Huge glorious sound stage, articulate, airy and detailed, yet very musically involving. The XP-25 is just a great all around phono section. Very extended throughout the frequency range and not analytical/cool sounding. I would say it leans a bit on the warm side of neutral.

rockitman

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^^^ Thank you Srwooten. I see you are a fan of Pass Gear... I have had the XP-30 for over a week now. The performance is stunning although the unit still isn't quite broken in yet. The ML 380S is now mothballed.

rockitman

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Preamp Time.:-) When I thought I would stick with Pass ( I may still ), I am also considering the following. Any advice/experiences from the "All Out Assaulters" would be appreciated based on my system components:

Pass Labs XP-30 (I can audition this) $16,500
Spectral DMC-30SS SERIES 2 $10,000
Audio Research Reference Anniversary $24,995
Lamm Model L2 Reference $13,690
DarTZeel NHB-18NS $23,250
Allnic L4000 $10,900

Was looking at VTL, but I hear their customer service sucks. That I don't need in a reference preamp.

rockitman

Center
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The final missing piece is a preamp upgrade. As much as I love my ML 380S, I don't think is can be listed as a reference component anymore given the advances in technology since the 380S.

My first choice and to better maintain synergy with my system is the Pass Labs new reference, the XP-30 3 chassis preamp. I would be interested in any impressions if anyone has been lucky enough to hear it. I am also interested in peoples opinions on the 380S and how it might compare to the XP-30 or even the previous Pass reference, the XP-20. The preamp will be the last major item addressed on my all out assault other than analog carts and arms.

rockitman

Center
Owner
Making room for another rack, I purchased Siltech Classic G7 series, 3 meter xlr interconnects so that I could move my mono block amps to the outside of my speakers to make room for a second Adona Zero GXT rack (slightly shorter) to suopport my new turntable that arrives towards the end of December (Clearaudio Master Innovation). In addition to that, I purchased 2 more PS Audio Power Plant Premier power regerators so that each amp has it's own dedicated clean, stable power. That in itself made a signicant contribution in sound quality by opening the amps up even more. The bass is more effortless, tight and the soundstage is wider and deeper. Updated pics to follow once the rack arrives and is set up.

rockitman

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Hi 10-30-11: Jtimothya, indeed. I purchased 4 more 2x4 micro traps and hung them off the ceiling (2 for each channel) and it did make a significant difference for the better in terms of imaging and sound stage depth. I need to revise my picture of the room.

rockitman

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System edited: Some system pics up...

rockitman

Center
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So I installed my bass traps...reflection free zones (Realtraps)... Holy Moly, I had no idea on how good the system can sound. It is clear to me, with any room, without treatment to flatten the frequency response, your not getting the most out of your system period. This is not a subtle tweak. It's a game changer. It's amazing to me that anyone could give a credible review of any equpipment in an untreated room.

rockitman

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Ortofon will do re-tips on the A90. Good news:

Hello Christian, yes, A90 stylus can be replaced if and when worn out as a part of Repair Service Exclusive Series.
Best regards
Katarina H. Nielsen
Ortofon A/S

rockitman

Center
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So I purchased the "New" Clearaudio Master Innovation yesterday. I will be the first one in the country to get a unit, which supposedly will ship in mid December. The prototype table will be at RMAF this October. Anyone who attends and hears it, I would appreciate your thoughts shared here. Thanks in Advance.

Prototype picture: http://gallery.rennlist.com/albums/album830/clearaudio_master_innovation.jpg

rockitman

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My latest tweak which will arrive in a week or so are room treatments, finally. I have an assortment of bass traps and RFZ traps coming from Realtraps. Once they are in, I will start photographing my system/room for pics to post here.

rockitman

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So I love the Ortofon A90 and I find 100 ohms resistive loading to be the ticket for my system. I have been worried about the day when the Ortofon needs service. Unfortunatley, it doesn't look like Ortofon will do complete rebuild. I still find there repair policy confusing.
Repair service Exclusive series
Ortofon MC Windfeld, A90 and Xpression are the exclusive cartridges of very high quality. To support our customers, who have accidentally damaged their cartridges, Ortofon provides a special repair service. Should you have need this service, please contact your local Ortofon Partner.


What if my cart accidently wears out ? Will it qualify ? he he

Just for the record, here is Ortofon's complete repsonse to by re-build question:

Hello Chris

Happy to hear you are not being disappointed with A90, thank you.

We offer repair of exclusive cartridges, incl. A90 http://www.ortofon.com/support/service-and-warranty :
Repair service Exclusive series
Ortofon MC Windfeld, A90 and Xpression are the exclusive cartridges of very high quality. To support our customers, who have accidentally damaged their cartridges, Ortofon provides a special repair service. Should you have need this service, please contact your local Ortofon Partner (which is Ortofon.us http://www.ortofon.com/comprofiler/userprofile/1109)

Should the cartridge be worn, that we will be pleased to offer Exchange Service:
Exchange service MC cartridges
Ortofon Moving Coil (MC) cartridges are handmade, extremely complex and cannot be repaired. Therefore Ortofon has an "Exchange service". For customers who has a MC cartridge with normal worn out diamond and no misuse or damages, we offer the customer to buy back his cartridge for 25% of the current price list provided that the customer buys a new Ortofon cartridge, either equivalent, compatible or better model.
Exchange Service cartridges must be returned to an authorized Ortofon Partner pursuant to the purchase of a new cartridge. If you should have the need for this service (also mentioned in our users manuals), please contact your local Ortofon Partner.

I doubt complete rebuilt option: A90 was a limited edition, discontinued for soon a year ago, thus spares for complete rebuilt not available. We used to say stylus life time is in the range 600-1000 hours without degradation of performance, thus (hypothetically) complete rebuilt could be an issue after a number of years. In the meanwhile we would continue working on new models, using new materials, new technologies to improve performance and acoustics, thus new exciting (from the engineering and acoustical point of view) cartridges would be available.

Should you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact Ortofon US http://www.ortofon.us/contact

Best regards
Katarina H. Nielsen
Ortofon A/S

rockitman

Center
Owner
So I secured an Ortofon MC A90 cart with very few hours last night. It will need to be broken in... not a bad thing as it means I have many hours of listening pleasure ahead before stylus replacement. I will be giving my Shelter Harmony a rest and will give my comparo of both down the road. Still no pics yet of my system, but they will be fourthcoming when I make the time to take them.

I am curious what load impedance owner's of this cart like ? 10, 50, 100 ohms ? I probably won't get it in my possession until early next week. TIA

rockitman