Playground for practical listening exercices

General HiFi discussion, using the Tune Method to evaluate performance

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by Spannko » 2019-08-15 22:49

Charlie1 wrote:
2019-08-15 22:35
I prefer clip 1, 19-24-23.

I can hear something that sounds like a tap gently running? It's in both clips. I kept thinking it was our tap :)
Ha ha! Brilliant! You must have good hearing. I’ve got a tall radiator which needs bleeding and you can hear it bubbling!

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by Charlie1 » 2019-08-15 22:58

Ha,
Meant to say, the bass seems back to normal levels based on familiarity with the LP.

Also, I keep thinking of the time I wanted to try the M140s with grills off and Fredrik said he expected it to be less musical, which it was - i.e. Linn had tuned them with the grills on. This makes me think of your cabling. I doubt Linn develop their products using any fancy mains cabling and dedicated radials (or whatever they should be called). Perhaps their kit is simply tuned for a factory in Glasgow using a standard cable and cabling architecture for a commercial building.

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by Spannko » 2019-08-16 06:54

You might be right about the radials charlie1. My plan is to try and find the best fancy mains circuit topology and then compare that with a ring circuit in a final shoot-out.

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by Charlie1 » 2019-08-16 10:24

beck wrote:
2019-08-15 15:38
The most important and telling comment regarding your setup Charlie1! :-)
I played a bit of Rumours again this morning, specifically 'Dreams'. It's like I've been searching for something for a very long time and I didn't know what it was but here it is now playing in front of me. It's a strange mix of qualities, including some nostalgia for the system I grew up with. It's a combination of superb timing that forms a cohesive whole that is also tuneful enough for me. This is definitely music to my ears.

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by beck » 2019-08-16 10:46

Charlie1 wrote:
2019-08-16 10:24
beck wrote:The most important and telling comment regarding your setup Charlie1! :-)
I played a bit of Rumours again this morning, specifically 'Dreams'. It's like I've been searching for something for a very long time and I didn't know what it was but here it is now playing in front of me. It's a strange mix of qualities, including some nostalgia for the system I grew up with. It's a combination of superb timing that forms a cohesive whole that is also tuneful enough for me. This is definitely music to my ears.
When you finally get there it feels like home! :-)
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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by lejonklou » 2019-08-16 23:13

Charlie1 wrote:
2019-08-15 22:58
I doubt Linn develop their products using any fancy mains cabling and dedicated radials (or whatever they should be called). Perhaps their kit is simply tuned for a factory in Glasgow using a standard cable and cabling architecture for a commercial building.
They sure don't. But there's more to it than tuning your gear for a particular power delivery or mains configuration. I have tried tuning one of my switch mode power supplies for a really short power cord. And they are highly tunable, similar to a power amplifier, so my idea was that the sharp and staccato character of the really short power cord might be compensated for by the tuning. When I was finished, I compared my short power cord to the usually-best-European (Shuko) 2.5 m Volex Tongyuan cord. And to my surprise, the 2.5 m Volex Tongyuan was still better!

I call this an intrinsic quality of the power cord. It does something right that isn't - at least not easily - compensated for somewhere else.

Another example is the length of loudspeaker cables. After I had found 2.48 m being optimal for Linn K400 (preferably split into two single wire "black K200"), I decided to try tuning one of my power amps for a really short length of the same loudspeaker cable. So I used a few decimeter, which would be well suited for a loudspeaker with integrated power amps, and tuned all the crucial parameters that determine the pace, the attack and the decay, of the power amplifier. What happened when I later tried a longer speaker cable? You guessed it, the 2.48 m "black K200" was still better!

Once again, the 2.48 m loudspeaker cable appeared to have intrinsic qualities that wasn't - at least not easily - compensated for.

Funny how the amps seem to want around 2.5 m of cables at each end. Is that some kind of magical number? No, as if you change to a North American 18 gauge power cord and run the amp at 115 Volts, the best length is slightly below 2 m.

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by Spannko » 2019-08-17 18:00

Re: Linns test rigs. I wouldn’t be so sure guys - unless you have incontrovertible evidence of course!

There is evidence that Linn have looked a little deeper into how best to power their systems when Philbo once posted a photo of his mains wiring. On the recommendation of the R&D team, he’d made a hydra out of Linn power cables into a 30A connector, into a short length of twin and earth, into an MK plug. Linn also made a special version of the Akurate DS for the Japanese market to cope with the demands of their local circuit topologies. I’d be very surprised if they didn’t knock up a test rig to make sure it worked ok - but, of course, I don’t have any incontrovertible evidence for that either!

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by Charlie1 » 2019-08-29 12:08

12/110: https://www.dropbox.com/s/bj9vxrnj8eip8 ... 9.MOV?dl=0
12/160: https://www.dropbox.com/s/pf72i3n4y8s5j ... 0.MOV?dl=0

The 110 hasn't been serviced either so will test again in a couple of months once it's all back from Class A.

Both amps warmed up for an hour or so and running off same extension block - I did change the order appropriately for each test.

The volume on the preamp was unchanged even though the 110 is louder.

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by Tendaberry » 2019-08-29 12:55

The different levels make it a bit tricky, I do prefer the 160 though.

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by Charlie1 » 2019-08-29 20:57

Thanks Tendaberry - I'm with you on that one despite the 110 sounding tighter.

I didn't know if it was better to leave the preamp volume and change the volume when playing clips or try to equalise the volumes on the preamp.

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by AlbannachFE » 2019-08-29 21:26

With caveats about the volume levels, and servicing status, on this evidence, I'd say 12/160, by a fair margin - more coherent/together sounding; markedly more upbeat, too.

Keep them coming, charlie1 - great to have some chances to compare some classic Naim. :-)

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by Charlie1 » 2019-08-30 08:30

AlbannachFE wrote:
2019-08-29 21:26
Keep them coming, charlie1 - great to have some chances to compare some classic Naim. :-)
Fill your boots...

1. 12/HiCap/160: https://www.dropbox.com/s/nnbdect9a4v1u ... 6.MOV?dl=0
2. 12/160: https://www.dropbox.com/s/f1fwnfhfho4jw ... 7.MOV?dl=0

The HiCap is serviced. I left it powered on during the recording of clip 2.

All the kit had been powered on for about 24 hours although this was first track of the day.

I tried 32.5/HiCap on the Radikal system and really couldn't get on with it, even after 12 hours warm up - didn't bother with recordings. Much prefer the Nait to that.

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by beck » 2019-08-30 10:09

Getting past me laughing at the upward bass guitar slide in the previous clips (sounded a bit like a “muu-uu” from a cow) it is easy in these latest clips to appreciate the contribution of the hicap.
Humans need passion in their life and music....

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by beck » 2019-08-30 11:08

And like the previous clips I can still hear things in the non hicap clip I like more.

I really liked the tightness of the 110 but how to determine what is best is a more tricky question. In the end the person in front of the system has to find the enjoyment.
Humans need passion in their life and music....

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by Tendaberry » 2019-08-30 11:36

beck wrote:
2019-08-30 10:09
Getting past me laughing at the upward bass guitar slide in the previous clips (sounded a bit like a “muu-uu” from a cow) it is easy in these latest clips to appreciate the contribution of the hicap.

Yep, better with Hi-Cap. But still a bit sluggish...

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by Charlie1 » 2019-08-30 14:25

Similar to beck, I hear things I like in each setup. I certainly think the HiCap does the HiFi stuff better with more control and clarity. However, the music just doesn't gel quite as well for me.

I recorded another track cos I wasn't 100% certain...

12/160: https://www.dropbox.com/s/rmbhky80o6chh ... 1.MOV?dl=0
12/HiCap/160: https://www.dropbox.com/s/u43qivxh5cyb1 ... 7.MOV?dl=0

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by Tendaberry » 2019-08-30 14:36

Charlie1 wrote:
2019-08-30 14:25
I recorded another track cos I wasn't 100% certain...

12/160: https://www.dropbox.com/s/rmbhky80o6chh ... 1.MOV?dl=0
12/HiCap/160: https://www.dropbox.com/s/u43qivxh5cyb1 ... 7.MOV?dl=0
Without the Hi-Cap I just want to pause the track, seriously unfunky...

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by AlbannachFE » 2019-08-30 15:02

Thanks, charlie1 - I'll get a chance later, hopefully, to have a proper listen to the latest clips, but in the meantime, a couple of points (which you might already be well aware of, so no offence intended, but just in case):

In theory, having the 12 on top of the Hi-Cap is the worst place for it - it shouldn't make a difference with the comparison, as it's a constant, but for optimum performance, best to keep anything with a PS away from the pre-amp.

Also, Naim equipment benefits from being left on 24/7, and even old/used equipment can take a few days before they perform at their best.

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by tokenbrit » 2019-08-30 15:59

Not digging these latest clips - they all sound a bit soulless to me... Not sure if that's the 12 when I preferred the 32, or just the Naim sound coming through more... I prefer 160 vs 110, and with the hicap, just, over without but I'm not really getting the music with either(s).
Are these as well as, or instead of your Nait? Interesting listen, but going further away from 'home' for me, and confused as to what you are looking for with these boxes over what you have, unless it's for the curiosity & fun of just listening.
Reading back this sounds a bit criticising - it's not meant to be... I'm just a little lost as to what you are looking for... Happy to help you find it though, if we can ;)

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by Charlie1 » 2019-08-30 16:15

I appreciate your honesty.

It's a mixture of fun, curiosity and looking for a Nait-like amp but with more oomph. Similar with speakers, I might be buying a lot but also selling on kit as well - the Larcs went this week after owning them several months.

Some of these items don't become available from a safe source very often so I've bought them when I could, even if the timing wasn't right. Plan is to keep a Nait for one system and pre/power for the other.

As for the sound, I really enjoy the 12/160 although I appreciate that what makes music enjoyable for me is probably not the same as most people.

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by Charlie1 » 2019-08-30 17:18

AlbannachFE wrote:
2019-08-30 15:02
In theory, having the 12 on top of the Hi-Cap is the worst place for it - it shouldn't make a difference with the comparison, as it's a constant, but for optimum performance, best to keep anything with a PS away from the pre-amp.

Also, Naim equipment benefits from being left on 24/7, and even old/used equipment can take a few days before they perform at their best.
They've been on about 36 hours straight now. I actually don't like leaving amps on overnight so need something that will sound pretty good straight away.

OK, I've moved the HiCap and re-recorded the last track. It's a bit quieter as well - I think it may have been slightly too much volume for the phone as well as the proximity to the preamp.

12/160: https://www.dropbox.com/s/8bhbmfzkwf1v8 ... 0.MOV?dl=0
12/HiCap/160: https://www.dropbox.com/s/hyuj4e58e0g73 ... 8.MOV?dl=0

I find them musically very close now and HiCap is more tempting cos it does sound quite a bit better in HiFi terms. Still find the 12/160 has a slight edge in terms of connection between musicians. Also, after a very quick listen with HiCap, I suspect the system is turning a bit too Naim for me - very fast attacking sound that I'll soon find tiresome. Probably just leave the HiCap insitu this week but get feeling is that 12/160 is more for me.

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by tokenbrit » 2019-08-30 19:32

HiCap adds control and tightens up the timing so it sounds more musically cogent, but maybe loses some coherence - too much separation, in HiFi terms? Without the HiCap it's a little more mellow... and melodious?

Once you've got tired of the 'cap, we need 12/160 vs Nait ;)

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by Charlie1 » 2019-08-30 19:39

tokenbrit wrote:
2019-08-30 19:32
Once you've got tired of the 'cap, we need 12/160 vs Nait ;)
Didn't we do that already? Maybe you were off that week :)

Anyway, it's serviced CB Nait 1 vs serviced CB Nait 2 next week...

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by tokenbrit » 2019-08-30 19:56

Did we? ;) I may have been off for a week somewhere between Nait1, Nait2, 12, 32, 12 with 32 board, 110, 160, serviced, unserviced, and HiCap... Not excluding various -ans: K-, Kat-, or Shenanig-ans :)
Hey, I did say I was a little lost, but it could be that that was a slight understatement :-p

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Re: Playground for practical listening exercices

Post by Charlie1 » 2019-08-30 20:28

Lol - well, that covers some it for starters. I have been showing some restraint though - still no barry mannilow clips.

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