System Photos!

Now that I have the entire house all to myself (kicked the ex and her dumb son out a few months back), I pulled out my old faithful AV123 (GR-Research) X-Statik’s with their fully upgraded crossovers and No-Rez, the Cambridge Audio CXN (V2) that I only used for a couple months before upgrading to the Auralic Altair G1 in the main system, the old faithful APC H15 that I’ve had for years, and a little S.M.S.L AO200 integrated amp (50w x 2 @ 8 ohms).

I got this little setup running in the master bedroom. Man, I forgot how good these X-Statik’s sound tonality wise and how they image with a deep and wide sound stage. Will definitely be doing some tweaking as time goes on.

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Similarly, I opened a box that has been sealed for 27 years.
This was inside:

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I’ve had David Gilmour’s Live at Pompeii playing since yesterday morning, and I have to say, things are sounding better. Treble is still airy, but smoother than a few days ago, midrange and mid-bass is fuller and more present, and the bass has opened up with a bit more “oomph” while still being tight and punchy. The sound stage has also opened up more with great depth and width. Quite surprising considering the X-Statik’s are being powered by this little SMSL amp (no tone controls used either).

Part of this might also be due to the electronics burning in as well. I know the Cambridge streamer has been sitting for well over a year, the little integrated for more than that I think, and all of those Maze cables for a couple of years. Can’t forget the old Mojo Audio 8AWG cross helix vintage Western Electric power cord that’s powering the entire system through the APC.

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Ok, another latest iteration of my ever developing system.

Starting from the outside and working inward - Added a stereo pair of REL T/5x subwoofers (my first subs and I’ll never be without them again) and a pair of Magnepan LRS+ speakers (Love them!). Top shelf is a Stellar Strata Mk2 integrated that I’m using as a pre-amp right now because it sounds better. Middle is an Airlens which I absolutely love (out of the photo is a Roon Nucleus One that I just received that is just a dream. Well worth the low price. Remaining unit on the top shelf is a refurbished Perfectwave SACD Transport that I just received (its a beast and I dearly love it). Second shelf is a pair of M700 amplifiers (my best friends) that are having a love fest with the LRS+ speakers. I keep going back and forth with the LRS+ and a pair of KEF R3 Metas. Its close but I think the LRS+ are going to win out - until I pull the trigger on a pair of FR5’s that is.

I think the upcoming Stellar DAC may be a better fit over the Strata MK2 because I don’t think I can give up the M700’s. We’ll see when that time comes.

Well thats it for now. This is by far the best setup I have ever had and I’m so glad PS Audio finally resolved the IR remote issue of stepping all over my TV’s. Finally making an all PS Audio system possible.

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You’ll love them much more if you get them out away from the wall and corners. They need to be out in the room, at least 3 ft from the front wall.

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Yes, but sometimes reality trumps the ideal

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Help ! My Cornwall’s puked out it’s Crossovers :joy:

I finally took the time to separate out the Crossover’s in my CW IV’s. Last year with two jobs on the go, Florida Audio Expo (FLAX) plus other stuff going on, there wasn’t enough time quite honestly. I just swapped put the parts and tacked everything together on the original Xover PCB. My intent was to not touch the original PCB and break everything out externally and Biamp the Tweeter & Midrange with the Black Ice Audio F100’s and run just the Woofer with an Orchard Audio Ultra Amp module.

Well I had some time last week and built up some Fugly looking but functional Xover filter boxes. I’m shocked at how directly soldering all the L, C, & R components together instead of relying on PCB traces to carry the signal (in addition to all the ArgentPur Speaker Cables) made these Speakers jump to life once again. Now I know you can “tune” PCB traces via PSpice models and such (I have no experience in it, but I’ve had Engineers explain and show me in great detail how it’s done in the Microwave World).

The Black Ice Audio F100 Amps have this neat little feature that Jim Fosgate added that allows you to safely Bridge amplifier pairs, triplets, quadruplets, quintuplets, and as many Amps as you can afford together without moving the Speaker Cables. You just go “Bridge” XLR Out to “Bridge” "XLR In " in of the next F100 Amp in the line and you’ve effectively doubled the output power on that channel.

Well, I didn’t quite do that but having the Amp schematic (under NDA of course), i looked at how he’d done this bridging circuit. Turns, out it’s all done at the line level so you can simply XLR “into” another Amplifier BUT if it’s not an identical F100, don’t expect this doubling of power at your Speakers terminals. It does however act like a buffered Pre-Out so I won’t need XLR splitters or a a Tube Preamp with multiple variable XLR Out’s like my ex BAT VK50SE had.

Wife’s not Happy and so far the “Bad Dog” hasn’t gone near them ! Cause if he does, he won’t be a “Bad Dog” no more. not :joy:

I’m done !!! Audiophile Nirvanna achieved (for me anyways).


HPF


LPF, BPF, & HPF (covered up)


Left Channel - Using the solid Silver Wired ArgentPur Amplifiers with Orchard Audio Ultra Modules for the Woofers/Black Ice Amps with KT170’s for the Mids & High’s


Right Channel - Again, I’m using the solid Silver Wired ArgentPur Amplifiers with Orchard Audio Ultra Modules for the Woofers/Black Ice Amps with KT170’s for the Mids & High’s


Four Peaks Kilt Lifter Scottish Ale is brand of choice since moving to Phoenix. In Canada, my go to was Rykard’s Red Scottish Ale.

Oh…and a “shout out” to “Uncle Pauly’s” The Audiophile’s Guide: The Stereo SACD. Stupid me had the Woofer on the right channel connected backwards on the actual Woofer terminals and after some cursing & swearing at myself. All is now good in the World !

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Here’s a major switch-up to my normal system… Chinese knock-off clone stuff!

A BRZ Hifi Mark Levinson JC-2 preamp clone, Tara Labs locking RCA ISM Onboard interconnect clones, Tara Labs The One power cable clones, and even a single Kharma power cable clone. Clone stuff one of my brothers likes playing around with just for fun in one of his systems.

The only REAL piece of kit here other than the streamer, conditioner and speakers is the NuPrime STA-9 amp. This is one of the two that I sold years ago to one of my other brothers. I now have both of them back (borrowing them) for a bit so I can play around with gear and such in this room/system.

Surprisingly, the preamp is rather solid and heavy, gets rather warm considering it’s supposed to be running in Class A. It’s a stout unit. And shockingly, all of the cables are quite decent and of actual quality. They sure do have all the details done down to a “T”, that’s for sure.

The important thing here is, the sound has vastly improved over the little SMSL AO200 integrated amp. An even deeper and wider sound stage, a lot more focused imaging, deeper, tighter, harder hitting, a lot better controlled bass, a fuller midrange, and a smoother yet still extended top end.

Of course, I’m sure 90% is due to the NuPrime amp alone. Though I do remember my brother swapping out a Rotel RC-1572 MkII preamp for this BRZ JC-2 clone and this little preamp sounding considerably better. Just an overall more refined sound throughout. And that’s what I’m hearing now, so who knows.

Anywho, some pics…

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You’ve seen the front of my cabinets, I thought I’ll show the mess in the back of the cabinets. Note the OWC hard drive that feeds my streamer.

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Now I don’t feel so bad with the mess I have behind my system, LOL

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Compared to my efforts, this is far from a mess.

:stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

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That’s clean and organized. What was your question/problem? :thinking:

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I have seen Data Centers with less cables.

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a cable fortune

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Crossover wiring - I have as yet not seen a solution I am completely happy with - PCBs suck, as you say, point to point usually looks, well, scruffy (no insult intended) - in the end mine are on a proto boards but with the traces beefed up with heavier tinned copper wire, external (internals removed) and kept in a 1Kg yogurt pot :smiley:

I have all the bits for a replacement / upgraded Xover, but just haven’t come up with a way to house them and construct them that is different, cool, and robust.

One day…

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The DIYer’s lament.

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Innit.

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Point to point on bakelite, plywood, MDF or fun stuff like panzerholz. Mount the components on top, route out channels on the underside for wiring & connections

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My previous full on DIY stuff when it came to laying out the Xover’s was never anything to brag about but it sounded good. I feel (and see) your pain John.

Joe

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Fender Princeton Reverb… not scruffy looking at all!

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