Azazello's system

Presenting yourself, your equipment and music in pictures and text

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Post by lejonklou » 2007-09-18 20:39

Aahh, right - money to finance a Keel!

I just re-read the first page and feel a bit stupid. :oops:

So; you think the pair of Index Plus are not good enough? That must be because you have only downgraded and still not heard your LP12 with a Keel. When you do, you will be happier than before (and forget all about those aktiv Ninkas)!

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Post by Azazello » 2007-09-18 21:06

Maybee that is true... Right now all I can say is that i really feel that I can live with LK100 instead of 5125, but when I connect the Index... It sounds like a pair of shoeboxes! It's dredfull!

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Post by lejonklou » 2007-09-18 21:13

Dread, beat and blood.

Sounds like heavy stuff! :mrgreen:

Seriously: Have you moved the Ninkas out of the room and installed the Index's properly?

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Post by Music Lover » 2007-09-19 11:51

Keel improve the TUNE, the speaker modification going to change the SOUND.
All speakers sound different.

Big Q - are you prepared for this step?

To be able to live with this change, is it going to be permament or just an interim until you have money to get better speakers?
It's all about musical understanding!

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Post by Azazello » 2007-09-19 15:38

lejonklou wrote:Seriously: Have you moved the Ninkas out of the room and installed the Index's properly?
No :oops:

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Post by Azazello » 2007-09-19 15:41

Music Lover wrote:To be able to live with this change, is it going to be permament or just an interim until you have money to get better speakers?
Only untill I get money to buy new speakers (and amps)!

I'll post some pictures on my LK100 on steroids soon, I know you will like it :wink:

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Post by Azazello » 2007-09-19 20:59

Here it is; quite possible the best sounding LK100 in the world:

Image

Image

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Post by Broccoli » 2007-09-19 22:09

Oh my, did that yourself? Soldering involved I guess? (I have two LK100s myself, but I think I'll skip the tweak if I have to solder - I would proably make it worse :))

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Post by ThomasOK » 2007-09-20 18:43

How did you find direct soldering improved the sound?

I have to admit I tried this a number of years ago when I made a Naim NAC12 preamp without a main board. It was just the circuit boards and controls all hard-wired. Although it sounded good it still didn't really outperform a stock NAC32 that used the same boards. Then I got the LK1/LK2 and sold my NAC32/Hi-Cap/NAP135s and stopped messing around with hard-wiring as it hurts flexibility and re-saleability. I do still have a Stax energizer on which I bypassed the cheap Speaker/Headphone switch and connecting cables and hard-wired Naim NACA4 direct to the board. That made a quite nice improvement. I really hadrly ever use headphones, however, as they just don't give the sound I get from speakers.

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Post by Azazello » 2007-09-20 21:05

I did not do it myself, I have a very exentric friend who helped me. And is it not quite obvious that direct soldering improves the sound? The alternative would be that banana plugs and RCA sockets improves the sound, would it not?
Last edited by Azazello on 2007-09-20 22:42, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by lejonklou » 2007-09-20 22:34

If the soldering job is of high quality, you do gain a bit of quality with these kind of shortcuts.
Impractical, but hardcore! 8)

But with bad soldered joints, you can be better off with the original (with Linn and Naim that usually means high quality) solderings and the connectors. This indicates how important the soldering joints are...

Reading your story, Thomas, I suspect that the soldered joints you made sounded far worse than the original Naim joints - that could very well be the cause of the results you report. Please don't take this as critisism - the person who performed the job could have been a master with the soldering iron, but making a joint that sounds good is quite complicated indeed. Flux, temperature, equipment, technique, metal composition and time are all important (in roughly that order) to the final result.

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Post by Azazello » 2007-11-03 12:09

Guess what is lying on my kitchen table!? :D Unfortunately I have forgotten my camera at work, so I wont be able to take pictures before it's mounted.

But to be honest, it really feels like madness to pay as much as I have done for this one-piece construction. :?

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Post by Azazello » 2007-11-04 11:32

So now I have it. Keel is now a part of my system and the Index Plus are very very carefully installed by a real expert (same lunatic that did the soldering on my LK100).

This system is driving me crazy! After the downgrade of 5125/Active Ninkas (carefully installed) to LK100/Index Plus (just standing there) everything obviously got considerably worse. Now I'm in a situation when it sometimes without doubt is better than ever, and sometimes it sounds like a broken system.

If I had to live with this forever, I cant really say whether the source-first-swap was relly worth it or not, however I hope to be able to save up to a pair of better speakers fairly soon.

Now I'm listening to Roxy Music’s firs album and I must say that it is really really good, probably better than ever. Earlier today I listened to Bruce Springsteen’s "Hungry heart", and felt that it has been much better at other times.

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Post by lejonklou » 2007-11-04 20:11

You have an incredibly cool source first system, Azazello...

But I do begin to suspect that those Index Plus are not good enough for you. :?

What other speakers are you considering? If you are on a budget (which I'd expect after the purchase of a Keel...) there might be other old models that are better. I remember replacing my pair of Index Plus with Helix 1. At the time, I thought they were a lot better.

Any old Naim speakers that are a bargain second hand these days?

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Post by Linnofil » 2007-11-04 21:26

lejonklou wrote:You have an incredibly cool source first system, Azazello...
Agree!
lejonklou wrote:I remember replacing my pair of Index Plus with Helix 1. At the time, I thought they were a lot better.
http://www.blocket.se/vi/14041193.htm?ca=15_s

In your price range? The Index's will be ideal for a Knekt zone later on if you don't need to sell them to finance a pair of Helix.

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Post by Lego » 2007-11-04 21:40

Well done Azezllo!You know it makes sense, that broken sound you are talking about is just the speakers hang on in there and youll forget the sound of the Ninkas,i feel however that if you used an old pair of kans, II or earlier you'll be blown away and you will really hear what your LP12 is up to.OK a violin wont sound like a violin,but you'll think WOW that's one hell off a violinist :wink: Keep us informed as time goes on,using the tune dem of course;but hey i still love to hear 'the bass sounds sounds amazing man!'
I know that tune

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Post by Lego » 2007-11-05 05:51

Sorry about the spelling error Azazello :oops:
I know that tune

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Post by Azazello » 2007-11-05 08:48

Lego wrote:Sorry about the spelling error Azazello :oops:
I will search my heart for a way to forgive you ;)

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Post by Azazello » 2007-11-05 09:27

Regarding the loudspeaker change, I think I will go for Tukan. I had them before and really loved them. They can be activated with only two amps and are better than Kelidh and cheaper and much better looking then Katan and Ninka. The bad thing about Tukan is that they are very rare, at least here in Sweden. The other alternatives would be Kaber or AV5140. What do you guys think? Whatever loudspeaker I buy will likely be driven active with LK100 pretty soon.

Linnofil, thank you for the suggestion, but I think I will try to get a better loudspeaker than Helix in the first place, if I buy those I know they’ll be staying too long. :?

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Post by Music Lover » 2007-11-05 22:24

Azazello wrote:The other alternatives would be Kaber or AV5140. What do you guys think? Whatever loudspeaker I buy will likely be driven active with LK100 pretty soon.
What is your combined budget for power amp(s)/speakers?

Never compared Kaber with 5140, anyone that have?
It's all about musical understanding!

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Post by Azazello » 2007-11-05 23:23

Music Lover wrote:What is your combined budget for power amp(s)/speakers?

Never compared Kaber with 5140, anyone that have?
Zero at the moment :oops: So I guess it's hard to come up with any advice.

But I obviously have to come up with SOME money if I want to upgrade. :? The problem is that I really would like a full range system, but for the money I can consider now, the only option would be Kaber. And I don't know how "full" range they really are? But a two-way construction makes much more sense when on a budget.

There is a pair of Naim SBL for sale in Sweden now, but I don't know anything about Naim speakers...

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Post by teatime » 2007-11-06 10:21

Music Lover wrote:Never compared Kaber with 5140, anyone that have?
I did, way back (must be something like 12 years ago now), when I owned active Kabers myself and AV 5140 were pretty new. I found 5140 rather awful at the time, they felt unfocussed and flabby. Big boomy bass. The first Linn speaker I actually disliked. I think they were still seen mainly as a "home theatre speaker" at the time, at least that's how I rationalized their existence.

The comparison was of course not very fair - the tight and active Kabers compared to the bass-happy passive 5140 - but nothing about 5140 made me at all interested in hearing more from them. It's worth pointing out that they are very different speakers (sound, look, build principle). Even if 5140 was actually up to Kaber's level of performance (I didn't hear it, but the price indicated Linn maybe thought so) it's almost hard to imagine anyone actually liking both speakers well enough to seriously compare them. :roll:

However, my impression changed completely when they had turned into Espek some 6-8 years later. The one time I heard Espek for more than a few minutes I was very impressed. (A year later I was very close to buying a pair, but ended up with Akurate 242 instead.)

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Post by El Mero Mero » 2007-11-06 12:23

teatime wrote:
Music Lover wrote:Never compared Kaber with 5140, anyone that have?
I did, way back (must be something like 12 years ago now), when I owned active Kabers myself and AV 5140 were pretty new. I found 5140 rather awful at the time, they felt unfocussed and flabby. Big boomy bass. The first Linn speaker I actually disliked. I think they were still seen mainly as a "home theatre speaker" at the time, at least that's how I rationalized their existence.

The comparison was of course not very fair - the tight and active Kabers compared to the bass-happy passive 5140 - but nothing about 5140 made me at all interested in hearing more from them. It's worth pointing out that they are very different speakers (sound, look, build principle).
I share your impressions teatime. The first 5140s were simply awful and I have also heard them active upgraded to Espek status driven with two 5125s, this time I got the same feeling but I have also heard them sound quite good and they do certain things very well. If you can ignore the "detached, slow and out of sync" bass it’s definitely not a bad loudspeaker.

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Post by El Mero Mero » 2007-11-06 12:31

Oh, yeah.. the Kabers are definitely not perfect loudspeakers themselves but they excel in speed, coherence and timing much like the original Kan mkI and mkII.

Azazello, If you are interested in hearing active Kabers live send me a PM and I’m sure we can arrange something. It would also be cool to take a look at your hot-rod LK100s and listen to how a true source first system actually sounds.

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Post by Azazello » 2007-12-02 11:31

I bought a pair of Nexus a few days ago; they are in quite bad shape so I got them very cheap.

They are not installed properly at the moment and I really hope that's the main reason for the fact that I don’t feel they are such big improvement as I had expected.

Anyway, I'm planning on keeping them until I can afford a pair of really good speakers, maybee Keltik.

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