I started putting together this room about 11 years ago. The room started out as Home Theater with Classe Delta electronics and B&W 700s series speakers. Since then, I have gone through three major upgrades and what you see now it’s my attempt to enjoy that lush, warm and organic sound synonymous with some of the finest tube and solid state components. 

My end goal always been to put together a system that allows you to forget about the components and let’s you completely immersed into music. I believe, it’s not so much about a single component, big or wide sound stage or I’m blown away by that one upgrade.....when 
you have the music on, it’s more like being at a live acoustic event in the comfort of your own space. 

Speaking of Tannoy Canterbury GR’s....I knew as soon as I first laid my eyes on the brand that there is something very special about that dual concentric design that grab my attention like no other speaker.  

It's quite easy to understand the major advantage of the dual concentric design, the low and high frequency sound radiation is generated on the same axes – both the vertical and horizontal axis and all the others in between – sending out a single integrated wavefront of multiple waves instead of waves from multiple locations (as pretty common with speakers with multiple drivers). The high 
frequency driver mounted in the middle of the center pole of the bass driver is an exponential 
horn, perfectly capable of rendering natural detail with excellent pace, rhythm and timing. The midrange and treble literally “feels” like it’s embedded within the bass. There isn’t anything artificial about the Canterbury’s......the unmistakable combination of detail, warmth, depth and power is nothing short of a very musical tour de force. Tannoy's paired with a 300B SET amp is nothing but sub-lime. I am still tinkering with best 300B tubes in my system, so far I've tried Sophia Princess, EML 300B Mesh and EML 300B XLS and Gold Lion 300B and they all have their strengths. I will complete my quest for best 300B by trying the Takatsuki TA-300B. 

The components are housed in a exquisite and solidly built Core Audio Designs PlyKraft racks, hand built from gorgeous African Bubinga wood. Not only they provide solid foundation (and isolation), they also look spectacular. The mono amps are on Core Audio Designs isoPLAT CLD v4 platforms. 

One may notice bunch of tweaks throughout my rig. Over the years, I’ve tried many tweaks, some worked out and some didn’t. The one’s stayed in my rig made an noticeable improvements in my system. 

My journey continues with the addition of one of the most coveted brand from Japan, Shindo Laboratory. Shindo and SET magical mid-range combined with the dual concentric speakers, the music simply transcends the physical limitations of my room; it’s like ceiling has been lifted. That wholesomeness of soul stirring musical bliss is finally here. The magical midrange, sweet and never harsh highs, meaty bass notes, it’s all here and they come at you together as a whole. I must have heard my favorite tunes 100 times and heard the same details I had always heard, but nothing like this. Both Shindo and Accuphase offers intoxicating synergy with Tannoy''s like match made in heaven.  

Of course none of this possible if you don't have good source to feed the downstream components. My digital front end, EMM Labs DA2 with Aurender N10 renders everything so faithfully. Last year, I finally had a chance to meet up with Ed Meitner at RMAF. The three things that define Mr. Meitner and EMM Labs more than anything else is his bespoke design, freedom and doing things the right way.  The man is a legend in digital world and it shows in his designs. There are no off the shelf parts in his DAC's.....everything is designed in-house. There are no magic components in use. The real magic is in intellectual property, software, and firmware. Together with N10, the DA2 is easily makes up as heart n soul of my digital audio system.  

And lastly, the backbone of any good system is Clean power. I switched to Nordost QRT system few years back. The major design philosophy of the Nordost power purification approach is that, while their products address EMI, RFI and other AC line noise, they do not use conventional filtering or power regeneration technology. As a result the QRT system does not limit peak current or alter source impedance, both of which can reduce system dynamics. The Nordost power purification system is not a one-box solution as is the case for most power conditioners on the market, rather there is a sequential approach to installing diverse QRT products in your system. 

As I began installing each component of QRT system, beginning with QB8; I was able to hear the sonic effects of each sequential installation of QX4, Qv2 and Qk1. I became aware of a lowering of the subtle background electronic noise level of my system. The vocals were less strained and the electronic background noise level dropped noticeably. There was a greater sense of intimacy and seductiveness to instruments. I heard better pace and rhythm as well as everything was brought into greater focus. What sets Nordost QRT it apart is its unique ability to take your system to an entirely new level of musicality. The specific aspects of AC line noise being targeted here and the way Nordost engineers have gone about it allows for a superbly natural midrange and treble tonality. The entire QRT system is a tweaker’s dream, I say Bravo!

Tweaks...what can i say, they are everywhere in my system. Carefully chosen and tested over the years. No one tweak is better than other but together they take your system sound to new heights. Where do I go from does one further improve the addictive and equally seductive sound. For now, I am just going to enjoy the music. 

System Edited***Sep 2020
Added GIK's Tape Op Acoustic Panels. 

System Edited***Nov 2019
Added Accuphase E-650

System Edited***Oct 2019
Added Shindo Monbrison Preamp

System Edited***Apr 2019
Added Aric’s Audio Super 300B Mono’s

System Edited***Aug 2019
Added room treatments from GIK Acoustics. 

System Edited***March 2019
Added Leben Preamp

System Edited***Nov 2018
Tannoy Canterbury’s 

System Edited***Oct 2018
EMM Labs DA2
Marantz SA-11S2
Audio Space Reference 3 (805) Mono’s. 

Room Details

Dimensions: 15’ × 30’  Large
Ceiling: 8’

Components Toggle details

    • GIK Acoustics 242
    4” panels to treat early reflections, works perfectly for my angled ceiling towards the back of the room.
    • GIK Acoustics 244
    Bass Trap panels with FlaxRange Technology on the rear wall. The wall behind listening position is responsible for large peaks and nulls, not only in the low end but in the mid and upper frequency range. Unlike corners, the back wall is a single boundary that requires different type of treatments. 

    I went with 5.25” thick panels (burgundy) that helped with smooth and tight bass response across the room. In addition, the solid black walnut wood diffusor panels from Core Audio Design were added to preserve the ambiance of the room and enhance low frequency absorption. 
    • GIK Acoustics gobo
    Free standing Acoustic Panels (gobo). Since my room only have three physical walls, I knew I had to treat the ‘open’ wall space to stop the bleeding. After speaking to James L. at GIK, he recommended floor standing panels that addresses the bleeding and reflections. 

    I am more than pleased with these panels. Not only they look good but they tremendously improved the imaging, depth and detail of overall soundstage. 

    • GIK Acoustics GIK Acoustics 242 Acoustic Art Panels - Limited Edition Tape Op Series
    Same functionality as GIK’s 242 acoustic panels that are known to address the early reflection points, flutter echo, or general decay in a room. GIK Acoustics partners with Tape Op to bring the amazing artwork that enhances room decor of any serious audiophiles that places equal importance to functionality as well as appearance. 
    • GIK Acoustics Impression Series
    4" Impression Series Bass Trap Diffuser/Absorber with Palomar Narrow pattern.  Four narrow panel in 11.5”w behind and in-between the speakers. 
    • Tannoy Canterbury GR
    I dreamed of owning Tannoy’s Canterbury’s for the longest time...well they are here. I have the good fortune to own these wonderfully amazing speakers. For past eight months, I have been bowled over by their detailed, warm and dynamic sound. I have yet to hear another set of speakers that is capable of connecting you to the music so intimately and emotionally. 

    In an ideal world a speaker designer would want to design a single transducer that addresses the entire frequency range – the ideal of the single-driver speaker. That transducer would cover the lowest bass notes as well as the finest details of the upper treble. Alas, that ideal has been very elusive, and drivers that work well for low frequencies don’t work well for the upper frequencies. Speaker designers have instead resorted to the use of multiple drivers and complex crossover schemes. Of course, this breaks up the audio signal into different segments and transmits each segment from and to different points in space, creating all sorts of acoustic problems that have to be addressed.

    Enter the dual concentric driver. The major advantage of the dual concentric design is that the low and high frequency sound radiation is generated on the same axes – both the vertical and horizontal axis and all the others in between – sending out a single integrated wavefront of multiple waves instead of waves from multiple locations. We have all heard multi-driver speakers which sound a bit disjointed, putting the violins or brass or some other part of the orchestra in a different place than their locations at the time of recording, or creating smearing because the multiple wavefronts are not reaching the listener at exactly the same time.

    With the dual concentric driver you have a single chassis that incorporates two separate drive units, integrated into one. The high frequency driver mounted in the middle of the center pole of the bass driver is an exponential horn. Tannoy says that the new 15-inch Gold Reference bass driver is Tannoy’s most powerful and articulate Dual to date, offering over 96dB efficiency. It has a new fiber-enriched paper pulp cone material and the cone is terminated with a twin roll surround of impregnated fabric for improved damping characteristics. The crossover to the bass driver has also been redesigned, featuring Custom ICW ClarityCap™ MR capacitors, low loss laminated core inductors and thick-film resistors, and the final assembly is deep cryogenically treated as a whole unit.

    The expertly crafted wood work with classy gold metal work is all very exquisite. I am ‘Tannerd’ for life.  
    • Tannoy ST-300Mg
    The  ST-300Mg SuperTweeter has been developed to bring the benefits of truly WideBand frequency response to Prestige GR loudspeakers.  The ST-300Mg extends the high frequency capability of the complete loudspeaker system to over 62 kHz with useable HF output up to 100 kHz. 
    • REL Acoustics Carbon Limited Edition
    The Carbon Limited is simply superb in producing low and mid level bass definition ....none of the ‘boomy’ or overwhelming bass that’s so hard to overcome with other subs. 

    I was torn between the 212/SE and Carbon Limited, many thanks to John at Audio Salon in providing the solid advice.  The CL’s are perfect companion for my Tannoy’s.  The CL offers the perfect blend of ultra long stroke 12” G-1MKII Carbon Fibre driver, noted for its speed and purity and light alloy 12” passive driver known for superb dynamics. 

    My favorite demo track, Why so Serious from Dark Knight Soundtrack. 
    • Shindo Labs Monbrison
    The Shindo gear is all about bringing out the sense of musical drama and beauty. It highlights the technique of the musicians with beautiful tone color and excellent decay. It gives you the gestalt of the entire performance rather than focusing in on the details of individual parts for a sense of cohesion that captures the musical ebb and flow of a performance in a very natural and realistic fashion. 

    I can only imagine the entire Shindo system :-)

    With Monbrison, my system took a giant step forward in, 

    - dynamic range
    - micro-dynamics
    - sweetness
    - separation between instruments,
    - vocals with lots of presence.

    • Aric Audio Super 300B
    I’ve looked at several offerings from both small and well established manufacturers currently building 300B SET’s before reaching out to Aric Audio. I wanted to own something special, SET amp capable of delivering the delectable midrange and seductive highs 300B tube is known for; so enticingly rich and natural. Most current crops of 300B amps left me yearning for ultimate combination of performance and aesthetics. Back in October 2018, I was still getting acclimated to 300B tube after making transition from ARC to Audio Space mono’s.  They proved to be very refreshing and lot more musical than the ARC gear (no offense to ARC fan base). I wasn’t really looking to buy another amp but after speaking to Aric (thank you david_ten) I knew half hour into the conversation...Aric is the MAN for the job. I didn’t want to rush into any new project at the time as there was quite a few changes going on my end (having just finalized a deal on Tannoy’s), I told Aric, let’s reconnect in couple of months. 

    Fast forward to March 2019, a phone call from Aric took me by surprise. He wanted to see if I am ready to move forward with a ‘custom’ 300B amp. Having spent 4 months with Audio Space Mono’s, I was more than ready for next level of performance. I wanted something very exclusive and different than anything Aric ever done in the past. So we started discussing internal and external parts as well as the chassis. He suggested few option for the chassis, while I appreciated the options I wanted something that compliments and blends with my Tannoy’s and Core Audio Designs iSO platforms. Fortunately I knew someone who could build me a chassis from his vast collection of exotic woods. After few discussions, we decided on a ‘custom’ chassis from Brazilian Rosewood (Thank you Arnold). 

    Once we hand selected each part, Aric started the build in late May.  We ran into bit of snag due to manufacturing delays with Hashimoto’s transformers but it all worked out in the end. 

    **Update - I have reached 100 hour mark and amps continue to amaze me.  They are dead quiet with zero noise floor (this is pretty amazing folks, I never owned an tube amp that is so quiet as these Mono’s. Emotional Intimacy, imaging, timbres, silky smooth vocals, dynamics....all here and being conveyed in spades. 

    I’m not kidding here, these 300B amps has no shortage of Power, Control, Dynamics, Purity, Detail, Air and Realism.....all from 8W. Not to mention that superb beautiful tonality of 300B’s. 

    The choice of Hashimoto Iron was no brainer. They have a very complementary well defined mid-range and smooth highs. Not to mention the classy looks that is decor friendly.

    Here are the specs on 300B’s:
    - Dual mono 300B SET amplifiers
    - EL84 pentode drivers
    - Hashimoto 20 watt OT's
    - Dual Hashimito power supply filter chokes
    - Dual Hashimoto power transformers
    - All film capacitor power supply filtering
    - Hybrid Ultra-Fast diode/ tube rectifier smoothing power supply
    - Schottky diodes throughout 300B filament supply
    - Separate filament transformers eliminates rectifier spikes being fed back into main power transformers
    - Additional choke isolation for C3M DC output
    - Bleeder resistors and snubber capacitors used throughout power supply stages
    - OA3 gas-regulated screens on C3M
    - DC filaments on 300B/DC heater on C3M
    - Silver wire used throughout signal path, solid core copper used throughout power supply
    - Cathode "Auto Bias" for 300Bs
    - Film cathode bypass capacitors used throughout
    - Heat-sink wire-wound cathode resistors used for 300B bias
    - WBT RCA jacks and Binding posts
    - Yamamoto Teflon UX4 Tube Sockets 
    - Furutech IEC inlet
    - Hi-Fi Tuning Gold Fuse
    - Dual umbilical DC power cables, 14 gauge stranded OFC with speakon connectors (isolated for high voltages)
    - Duelund CAST PIO coupling capacitors
    - Gold-plated contact Teflon sockets
    - High (Solid Plate) and Low (Mesh) current settings for the 300B’s
    - Input sensitivity: 1 volt to full output
    - Input impedance: 100 kOhm
    - Output impedance: 4 or 8 ohms
    - FR: 25-90,000 Hz 
    - S/N: greater than 90 db
    - Power output: 7 watts in low current setting, 8 watts at high current setting
    - Residual noise at speaker binding posts: Less than 1 milli-volt each channel with no signal
    • Accuphase E-650
    It’s Accuphase I need say anymore, just kidding. One may ask, why did I sought out to look for Solid State amplification..well variety is the spice of life. And I needed to have a backup for tube pre/amplification. I must admit coming from Shindo Monbrison and Aric’s Super 300B, it took bit of patience to truly understand the virtues of this wonderful integrated. It plays my favorite tunes with a wonderful warmth, brilliance and a fabulous depth gradation. Accuphase sound is smooth edged (in a good way) and in control at all times, so very fluent and agile. 

    What started out as a backup project now turned out to be a worthy alternative to all out tube pre/amplification. Anyone seeking a tube alternative, must audition a Accuphase amp or Integrated. Sometimes you encounter a product that makes you reassess what you expect from your system, well Accuphase is certainly one of those product. 
    • Raysonic CD-128
    WOW!!! What a bargain in the high end audio. This players is the biggest reason I continue to buy and spin CD’s. The two upgrades, NOS Telefunken 6922’s tubes and HiFi Tuning Cu fuse took performance to another level. 

    The internal DAC is superb, there is nothing ‘digital’ about this player. The sound is very organic, precise and fuller. 

    The tactile user experience when operating this gorgeous top loading player is simply out of this world. 
    • Marantz SA-11s2
    The sound is warm, relaxed and very musical. I am glad to own this gorgeous player, the SQ has exceeded my expectations, miles ahead of previously owned Classe CDP-502, Krell Cipher and Oppo UDP-205.

    Build quality is top notch, exquisite champagne gold finish. 
    • Aurender N10
    The best streamer I’ve owned since upgrading from N100H. The N10 throws a soundstage that is open, airy and transparent. Adding a HiFi Tuning Cu with Cardas copper wire turned out to be a worthy upgrade. I end up preferring the slight shift in the sound that’s bit more organic with added warmth. 

    The N10 is been my rock for last five years. There isn’t anything else I care to own. How’s that for reliability and top notch sound. I couldn’t have asked for better companion to my DA2.  

    The cables in use are, 
    a) ACROLINK 7N-D5000 - AES/EBU
    b) Kimber KS-2426 Hybrid - USB
    c) JCAT Signature - Ethernet
    d) SOtM dCBL CAT7 - Ethernet
    • EMM Labs DA2
    Ed’s finest work to date, where we would be without his contributions in digital today. Ed is a analog designer at heart, he is as well versed in analog as he is in digital domains, in fact a legend in both disciples. This DAC sealed the deal for me....Exceptional detail, musicality, warmth, deep and wide’s all here in spades. Voices conveyed with utmost ‘you are there’ faithfulness. This DAC is a game changer, I am feel very lucky to own one of the best DAC’s currently available regardless of price. 
    • Nordost QBASE QB8
    The QB8 is your no ordinary power strip. It’s a straight-line low loss design maintains low source impedance of AC supply; focused star grounding; external ground post for connection to separate clean ground; mechanically tuned casework made of extruded aluminum with machined end caps; internal PCB deliberately preferred here over hard-wiring.
    • Nordost QBase QB4
    Same as QB8. I am using this amazing power distribution block along with pair of Qv2 and Qk1 with my mono amps.
    • Nordost QRT QV2 & QK1
    The Qv2 applies QRT technology directly to the AC line, introducing a carefully calculated range of harmonic frequencies to your system’s AC supply clocked from the line frequency itself. The Qv2 units bring an improvement "in the natural flow and harmonic warmth." I heard this and more. Since their benefits are cumulative even removing just one was missed. While I definitely liked the added warmth, I also heard an increase in midbass power and weight. 

    The QK1 works mechanically, it’s load-resonating coil to fight vibrations. Adding a pair of these renders high’s more dimensional and airy. 

    QV2 augments the quality of mid-and-upper bass. Similarly, the QK1 assists the treble range, benefiting overtones and smoothing stridency. Both will help soundstaging dimensionality and specificity. 
    • Nordost QX-4
    Nordost QRT products aimed at effective reduction, if not elimination of the negative impact from sub-standard AC and DC power on audio and video electronics. Nordost claims to achieve this by controlling ground flow, limiting EFI and RFI as well as timing errors on the AC line, and ensuring a clean and stable flow of current. 

    QX4 went in between the wall outlet and QB8. QX4 is Power purifier, designed to provide improve incoming AC power and reducing both RFI and timing-errors. 

    The chassis of the QX4 is purposefully designed and mechanically tuned. From its dimensions, to the use of billet aluminum for the chassis end caps and even its weight, the QX4 has been engineered to achieve a specific optimized mechanical tuning and resonance control. Typical power conditioners use filters to achieve their objectives, but with filters there are negative side effects, including decreased dynamics and dimensionality. In contrast, the Nordost QRT QX4 does not employ any filtering and is said to avoid any such negative side-effects. Instead, the QX4 uses field generators, which don’t impede power flow, nor limit source impedance or peak current. These field generators target the source of power problems, specifically the negative effects of EMI and RFI, while also ensuring a consistent and regular AC waveform. In addition, the QX4 does not induce any voltage swing limiting nor alteration of AC supply impedance, instead, Nordost claims it adds order and coherence, producing close to a 50% reduction in gross error. The billet end caps, above being a resonance control, also act as field generation bookends, containing and directing the field vertically rather than horizontally. Accordingly, Nordost insists that using the QX4 at the vertical centre of your system components should deliver the greatest improvement on EMF and RFI reduction.

    Long story short, the inclusion of QX4 in my system rendered airier, sweeter and more resolved high frequencies; richer, smoother, more fluid and holographic midrange; and fuller, weightier bass with improved imaging and sound-staging. 

    • Nordost QKORE 6
    Here is the final piece of the big puzzle - AC and Component Grounding is a vital piece of the pie to maximizing the performance of an audio system. 

    The QKORE is a parallel grounding device, which provides an artificial, “clean” earth for hifi audio systems using both an electrical and mechanical approach. This unique product combines Nordost’s patented Mono-Filament technology with purpose-built, Low-Voltage Attractor Plates (LVAPs), constructed with a proprietary metal alloy and a passive electronic circuit, in order to draw stray high frequency noise and voltage-generated magnetic fields to a manufactured earth point, leaving a clean reference behind. This passive system is contained in a mechanically tuned housing, and outfitted with gold-plated, WBT binding posts, which easily connect each component to an artificial ground. By providing for a balanced and very “clean” ground point, by-products of electrical balance imperfections between voltage and ground are no longer added to other pollutants, dramatically increasing high quality audio circuit performances.

    Once QKORE6 connected to my system, I sat down to analyze it’s effects. With the connection in place the violins were clearer with more presence. The instruments were conveyed in a more three-dimensional manner, their placement more stable, all lending to superb sonic holography. Also, noteworthy was an enrichment in instrument tone; more color and apparent complexity of string notes with natural sweetness and realism in timbre. The air around instruments was also more apparent, giving clearer insight into the recording space. The timpani percussion on the track had stronger dynamics with the QKORE Wires / QKORE6 and there was greater focus and a clearer impression of the instrument resonance. Brass tones were more brilliant with their metallic nature more authentically rendered. Overall, there was no doubt that the single connection between the QKORE6 and QB8 provided overall increased insight into the music and the recordings. 
    • Core Audio Designs isoPlat Mini
    Custom designed for 300B Mono Amps
    • Core Audio Designs PlyKraft 5L Rack
    Custom ordered 5 level plyKraft rack with african bubinga ply shelves and Black Walnet 'Burl' wood legs.
    • Core Audio Designs plyKraft 3L African Bubinga
    • Core Audio Designs plyKraft 2L
    • Core Audio Designs isoPlat CLD v.4
    • Gregitek RG1 Cable Supports

    When current passes through a cable an electromagnetic field is generated around it that goes beyond the dimensions of the immediate area. If the cable comes in contact with the floor, not only is the electromagnetic field disturbed, but also the fluidity of the flowing current. In addition, especially on carpets, electrostatic charges will unload itself and cause deterioration of the sound, as vibration of the floor does. 
    The benefit of Gregitek RG1 cable support system:

    • It protects the cable from the effects of the vibrations of the floor
    • It protects the cable from electrostatic charges
    • When the cable is suspended, phase shifting, caused by EMI, can be avoided

    The sound becomes more clear and articulate, with more information and details and more realistic with better dynamics.

    • Cardas Audio Multi Block Cable Lifters
    Oregon Douglas Fir with 5 ‘V’ cuts that are designed to provide multiple options. They were the easy pick for me....

    1. They can accommodate two parallel runs 
    2. Multiple V groves allows various configurations 
    3. Clean appearance and space savers due to very small foot print. 

    • Audio Exklusiv Silent RCA Plugs
    I stumbled upon these couple of years ago. I was skeptical to try these but our never quest for high fidelity leads us into trying stuff that sometimes borderline voodoo! 

    From experience we all know effective vibration control just as important as speaker placement and clean power supply. Since I am already using RCA caps to prevent the EMI/RF interferences entering my system, I thought why not give these RCA plugs give it a try.

    After reading few articles, they were designed to control vibration and resonance on the circuit board. They look like any other RCA plugs except that center pin is made of some kind of dense, nonconducting felt. The rest of the plug is metal covered with soft black material. 

    Well, let’s insert them and see what happens. I let them stay in my system for 50 hours. During A/B test, I heard quieter background, the music sounded bit more lively and less colored. Whatever they were doing, I was beginning to appreciate the subtle but noticeable differences in sound. I see no reason to remove them so they stayed in my system. 
    • Finite Elemente Cerabase Slimline Isolation Feet
    Cera technology is based on direct coupling for effective transfer of sound-interfering resonances. Fast resonance transfer is provided by ultra-hardened high-tech ceramic balls. When combined with precision-machined stainless steel, the optimum balance between damping and deflection is achieved. The resulting vacuum effect draws off unwanted resonance directly where it evolves. The clear advantage: No resonance buildup, no overdamping, no loss of deflection. 
    • Telos Audio Design RCA Caps
    Telos ‘Gold’ RCA and XLR caps...shield against RFI, EMI, dust and corrosion.  I found them to be very effective in lowering the noise floor with Teflon insulation. 

    Now who would have thought that covering unused RCA inputs can impact the sound character of your system. The gold caps in comparison to platinum caps presented vocals in a more forward manner, but with a touch of warmth and smoothness. High frequencies also were more extended but to a lesser degree compared to the platinum caps. Bass notes gained both substance and extension, something which the platinum caps did not really do. Micro-detail was not as good as the platinum caps the end of the day, I end up preferring the gold caps over platinum one’s. 

    Telos caps are made of copper and then plated in either gold. Fit and finish is excellent unlike many other cheaply made caps. 
    • Shunyata Research Dark Field Mini
    SR DF Mini Cable simply works as advertised. They have been ideal in keeping power cords away from signal cables. 
    • Furutech Flow-28
    The Furutech Flow-28 Inline Power Filter effective removes all of that high-frequency noise from the mains power before it reaches your components—all without robbing your system of the high frequencies that are responsible for that airy, 3-D sound that’s so natural and lifelike. Dynamic contrasts, you’ll discover, are unaffected as well. 

    Both REL subs are powered through Flow-28. 
    • Audio Envy SP-9
    Let me began by saying, I never in my wildest imagination thought that cables from a relatively less known company can sound this unbelievable good. I took a chance on these cables in 2018 during my visit to RMAF. I had the good fortune of meeting the proprietor / designer Mr. Captain (goes by Cap). What a wonderful man...humble, straightforward and pleasant. No marketing hype, no hyperbole, no BS here guys...and that’s exactly you get with his cables as well. 

    A journey that began with a trial of Studio Prestige IC’s for a reasonable price of $182. The cable appears to be well built with a nice purple sheath and RCA bullet plugs (made by AECO). The center pin conductor is made from high- purity copper (Tellurium Copper) with gold plating (10u"). The plugs appeared to be well made and has a very nice heft to it. I asked why these connectors, Cap explained; Gold-plated copper connectors is the closest in conductivity to the base metal of brass/copper.

    Before I get into sound, a bit of disclaimer...since the purchase of single IC in 2018, I have gone full circle with AE cables. My system now has full loom of AE cables. So following summary is based on AE, IC’s, Speaker Cables and Power Cords. 

    Let’s talk about the Sound, 

    As I said before, the price of these cables easily belies how amazingly they get the sound so right. In comparison to cables costing thousands of more, AE sounds incredibly alive and musical. They reminded me of my previous reference Audience Au24SE cables. I had used the Audience cables over 5 plus years in my system. Just like Au24SE, AE is no frill cables. With my existing components AE sounded more musical and impart very little sound of their own on the music. AE allowed the tonal color of the music to come shining through, again slightly better and naturally than Au24SE. Granted, I have not tried Audience SX line, but what i was experiencing through AE was quite mind bending. They were extraordinarily letting me hear the nuances of instruments and subtle timing of the musicians. They were very special at letting the music unravel right in front of you so that you could hear all the layers and textures of the entire sonic event. In no way did they restrict the dynamics or micro-dynamics of the music.

    The more I listened through AE cables, I couldn’t help notice how wonderfully they presented the artist and recordings in my room. I know cables are just one part of the equation and rest of the system has a lot to do with the overall soundstage. The Shindo Monbrison preamp, 300B custom mono’s amps or my Accuphase Integrated, EMM Labs DA2,  Aurender N10 and Tannoy’s are equally adept at letting all the music unravel in front of you. The AE wire loom seems to let’s you hear this even better and in a very organic way. 

    The AE cables also seems to let you hear a more expansive acoustical space than any other wires I’ve heard in my system especially the space around each instrument and vocal. It also excels at letting the pace, rhythm, and timing of the music come through. Drums come through so life-like it can be startling. You can hear the stick hit the drum with power and attack. You can hear the initial hit of the stick against the drum, but that’s not all – you also can hear the movement of air above and below the drum. I realize, again that the cables itself can’t do any of this but only allows you to hear what all the components is the system is doing; AE cables simply does this so well and better than any other cables I’ve tried or auditioned over the years. 

    And cymbals are very musically convincing as can hear both the tap of the sticks or brushes and then the shimmer. Listening to Norah’s And Then There Was was like the trio were playing in my room. The AE cables give bass fullness without sounding fat or flabby.

    What impresses me more about these cables are how tonally and musically balanced they sound compared to mega-dollars cables. These cables are real deal and steal in HiFi world of cables. 

    Do yourself a favor, listen to these cables in your system today! 

    • Kimber Kable KS-2426 HB
    This cable won me over immediately with its uncanny ability to extract more detail especially in the top end. The solid core copper and silver conductors captures more music with best possible accuracy of the instruments....silky smooth vocals are well defined and placed nicely between instruments.  

    Give it a Listen in your system, this one is a keeper. 
    • JCAT Signature LAN Cable
    I am so glad that I stumbled upon on this beautiful sounding cable. This is probably the first Ethernet cable that does not uses copper conductor.  The cable is made from  pure silver with 7% Gold alloy conductor. IMO, the hybrid cables offers the best sound with digital components. Aside from sheer detail, it’s transparency, high resolution, full bodied sound is evident in no matter what genre you’re get that precise soundstage each time. 
    • Acrolink 7N-D5000
    • SOtM dCBL CAT7
    • ADD-POWR ADD-POWR ElectraClear
    I was skeptic at first but then decided to take a plunge. After two weeks of running, first thing I notice is overall increase in depth and realism of musical performance. One of the best tweaks at reasonable’s a keeper. I left it plugged in the same outlet as my Nordost power distributor. 

    The technical explanation of ElectraClear - 
    It is an active line harmonizer that adds a program (algorithm) of a low fundamental frequency along with harmonic overtones directly onto the AC line. ElectraClear removes irregularities in the 50/60 Hz sine wave. Circuitry generates a 60 Hz pulse signal, reflecting the peaks and troughs of a sine wave. The precisely timed signal assists to maintain the integrity of the AC line waveform, thereby eliminating the quality of harshness from the sound.
    • Standard Sound Improvement Disc SID

    Standard Sound Improvement Disc 

    The Sound Improvement Disc is designed to reduce laser read errors from optical disc. By increasing disc stability and reducing laser refraction, the SID greatly reduces the amount of error correction necessary to convert the digital bitstream back into its original analog form. 

    • Emission Labs 5U4G, 300B
    • JCAT Net Isolator
    Disconnects electrical connection between devices connected together via Ethernet network, prevents current flow, ground-loops & AC hum which effectively eliminates noise in modern audio systems resulting in better sound quality.

    What I hear.... the noise-floor further lowered allowing music to flow more effortlessly. I really appreciate the finer details that are more distinct and audible without any glare. 
    • Leslie Dame M-380
    The M series solid oak veneer mission style media storage cabinets are the handcrafted, elegant, solution for the media room. The classic design and high quality construction and the adjustable shelves allow for versatility in storing wide variety of media. 
    • Auralex Acoustics Inc. SubDude-HT Subwoofer Acoustic Isolation Platform
    I was not expecting the improvements heard post installation. The platforms dramatically reduced structural vibrations through walls and floors. I heard immediate improvements in bass now being tight and defined with low-end clarity.  
    • HiFi Tuning Supreme Cu
    Probably the best fuse on's a shame that it's only made in the small/slow variant, select values. The HiFi Tuning Supreme Cu Fuse utilize pure copper caps and melt wire, ceramic case and then soldered with HiFi very own Supreme solder which is a silver/copper/gold mixture. The copper end caps are gold-plated to prevent oxidation and they are also cryogenically treated as well as undergo a quantum treatment by WA Quantum in Germany. 

    Now the sound, what you get is slightly warmer presentation that is not only very detailed but very analog like. After trying few fuses, I can say without a doubt that these fuses are must for any digital component. 

    I am using pair of these in my Aurender N10 and Raysonic CD128. 
    • Telefunken ECC88/6922
    • WBT-USA WBT-0681 Nextgen Spade Connector
    Best connectors money can buy!
    • Furutech GTX-D (R)
    Rhodium Plated Duplex - 9 of them in my system with GTX Wall Plate and Carbon receptacle plate.

    Those believe in everything matters knows what you actually hear is in a very real sense a direct product of the incoming AC then the final few feet are of prime importance for best performance. 

Comments 27

Looks absolutely awesome Lalit! Well done!


Wow! One of the nicest,most thought out listening room I’ve ever seen. Congratulations on a wonderful space.


Thanks @ricmci, appreciate your comments. I’ve lost count of the hours long!


Doesn't even compare to my Mac with 30 year old KEFs. Hah! That is incredible. The room is amazing. Would find it hard to go to work. I'm sure the time invested is second to none. Just beautifully done.


Wow, very nice system lalitk! Very tasteful art, decor, and colors!
Congrats, Anthony


Thank you all for the compliments. 

Dan, the minibar project got interrupted due to lockdown but I intend to see it through once we return to normalcy. For me, there is something intrinsic about bourbon and blues. Cheers! 


Incredible system and room.  Top 5 system on Audiogon IMO.


Lalitk, what a superb system you have, and in such a beautiful and tasteful room. I've lived with Tannoys since 1970, yet I've never heard Westminsters or Canterburys.

I especially like your fine spirits dispenser, very clever.

Enjoy, and regards, and stay well,

Ag insider logo xs@2xislandmandan

Nice system and room and thanks on advice on the Audio envy cables happy listening 😀


Thanks Dan, good to meet a fellow Tannoy fan. I couldn’t be any happier, Canterbury’s are simply amazing. While I continue to fine tune rest of my system, Tannoy’s are proving to be speakers that I see myself enjoying for a very long time. The unmistakable luscious tonality, exquisite cabinet woodwork and classy champagne gold trim...there isn’t any other set of speakers I care to own.



You have a wonderful system, and you have addressed every aspect of your system to optimize it's performance. I am a long-time member of the Tannoy club, having gotten my first pair of MG 12" ers in 1971.

I switched to tube amps a few years ago, using an SET 300B that's had the filament voltage optimized for the EML XLS 300B tube, and I had a Mr. Leong (sp?) SET 845 rebuilt, which my Tannoy HPD 315 speakers really appreciate.

Happy Holidays, though it seems when you get to listen to music every day that sounds the way our Tannoys do, every day is like a holiday.


Ag insider logo xs@2xislandmandan

Stunning! Without having heard it, I imaging it has an effortless ease and musicality to the sound.


Holy smokes! That is one great looking (and I bet sounding) system Lalit! It's impossible to grasp all that it is just based on e-mails and the pictures are worth 1,000 words! Much appreciated also on the kudos given for construction of your amplifiers- this was the right way to do it in my opinion, going into it with specific goals in mind, as well as knowing the 300B was the right tube for your system. Of course, pulling out all of the stops WRT parts selection was a huge part of the end result as well! I enjoyed the short time I had to listen to these before sending them to their new home :-) Best wishes, Aric


@swoody, thank you kindly. The GR’s are absolutely stunning, the recent addition of ‘custom’ 300B mono’s was another step in the right direction. 
I am looking forward to seeing your system on Agon. 


That is the way to do a write up on a system! Very impressive to say the least and I am a huge fan of the Canterbury GR’s as well! I am going to do a post up of my system which is in final stages of set up and will use your style of presentation to show it. Very cool set up and room! Thanks for sharing.


Your set-up is awesome!  I’ve wanted to hear those speakers for awhile now but never have.  I got to at least see them this year at RMAF but they were only on display unfortunately.  

I bet your set-up sounds amazing.  You get my jealous award :-)


Thank you all for visiting my system. Last couple of years been nothing short of amazing in my journey to audio nirvana. I am quite pleased with the sound and choice of my gear.


@lalitk Absolutely gorgeous system! Love those Tannoys and that Leben preamp is the definition of audio porn. I can only imagine how great it sounds and love your total attention to detail. Thanks for sharing!


Golden Reference Canterburys doesn't get much better than that in my book enjoy happy listening!


Gorgeous setup! I have listened to a few tube amplifiers and have loved the sound. No coloration, no additives, no components, just pure music.


What an amazing room and system you have put together.  I am sure you are all smiles when listening to this wonderful system.


A beautiful room and system!  Happy Listening!


4c756a48 6582 4c8f 9b42 f644b2b305ca
Beautiful set up!
I would love to audition some Tannoy speakers someday. 


Neat system! Love those mondo Tannoys!

Ag insider logo xs@2xarchguy

I have never seen anyone do subwoofers with big Tannoys. Why not? Kudos on creativity!


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