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tekniklynzane's Po' Man's Dream System System
IP Address: Last Update: July 22, 2012 at 01:35:13
Amplifier: A pair of Monarchy SM-70 Pro's (balanced). 80 watts RMS into 8 ohms, 120 into 4 ohms.
Preamplifier (or None if Integrated): A pair of balanced Goldpoint series attenuators (SMD) physically mounted inside each monoblock.
Speakers: A pair of Magnat MSP-120's (xovers restored in 2007). 4-ohm, 3-way twrs, 88db, 28-34k.
CD Player/DAC: My one and only audio source. Ric Schultz-modified Behringer DEQ2496. Has a 10-band/ch parametric EQ as well as a unique stereo width adjustment.
Turntable/Phono Stage: None...when it came to my disc collection, I found I couldn't afford a 2-front war, so I went with CD.
Other Source(s): Onkyo DX-C390 6-disc carousel changer as transport feeding a Monarchy DIP Combo and then to the DAC.
Other Accessories/Room/Misc.:
Speaker Cables/Interconnects: Monarchy PCOCC 12awg Speaker wires, unterminated. I (carefully!!) peeled off the black rubber outer jacket. Almost zero break-in time and more open sound that way - tedious, but worth it - also cut out the stock speaker binding posts and threw them into the garbage can where they belong - better definition across the board! Wire caps allow me to rearrange things when needed. Ran the new speaker wiring from amp output and soldered directly to the xover board inside the speakers. Replaced the wiring inside the speakers with runs of the PCOCC, as well. Analog IC's are a pair of Mapleshade Excaliburs from the DAC to the Goldpoints. Digital IC's are Mapleshade Double Helix RCA's between transport and DIP Combo and between Combo and DAC. With these I compared the sound from transport straight into DAC initially and then inserting the DIP Combo and the second pair of Mapleshade digital IC's into the signal path - result: no audible insertion loss from inserting the extra pair of IC's - a first for me with digtal IC's.
Other (Power Conditioner, Racks etc.): All power conditioning is by AMD (Alan Maher designs) in the system and scattered around the home. Very nice, very recommendable and just as important to sonic performance as any of my components. New (2012) Quantum solution, I-Shield.
Tweaks: Apart from AMD power conditioning, a pair of EVS audio Ground Enhancers - nice improvement in dynamics. A Hagerman FryBaby has come in handy numerous times and has been a real eye-opener for me. Going to try fo.Q soon. As well as bamboo isolation shelves with Alan Maher Q-feet.
Room Size (LxWxH): 15.5ft x 13.75ft x 8.0ft
Room Comments/Treatments: System is placed along the long wall - that sounded much better in this room. The left rear corner is open to the rest of the house. Engineered maple flooring of which at least 75% is covered with a shag rug. Some furniture, nothing obtrusive. No other room treatments as yet. Within the next 3-5 years I expect to be able to move into a house with a dedicated A/V room - hooray!!
Music Preferences and Comments:
Music Used (Genre/Selections): Almost anything, Rock, Classical, Metal, Jazz, Blues, Jazz/Fusion, Soundtracks, Alternative...occasional Country, World, Reggae, Pop, Gospel, International...
System Goals/Comments: I want it all...and for free of course. So far, it hasn't exactly worked out that way, but the system, as it is, is now a pretty well balanced one for $6.5k (and counting).
System Strengths: A very nice overall clarity regardless of volume level, however high or low, excellent vocal intelligability and instrument separation and transparency. Excellent linearity and dynamics with a clear and unimpeded sense of the full dynamic range from the quietest sounds against a black background all the way through to the peaks of the loudest and most involved of crescendoes. Electric guitars are clean, clear and rip through the mix with authority. Massed violins are no longer a stumbling block - terriffic separation and full measure of sweetness, gossomer thinness, searingness etc with no identifiable misbehaviors. All manner of bowing techniques are coming across very well now. Piano and trumpet offer excellent harmonics and realism. Excellent drive and PRAT. No colorations, remarkable tone, timbre and harmonics overall. A true, walk-through 3D soundstage with musicians that are often in the room, yet with good layering. A very good impression of sheer speed. Very good extension at the frequency extremes without any need for subs. This has now become a very open, musical and live-sounding system.
System Weaknesses: My current room is open to the rest of the house so the prametric EQ is about maxed out trying to get enough bass dynamics out of the 80-watt mono's. The extension is all there, but I'll have to wait until we move to (or hopefully build) a home with a dedicated and enclosed room that will allow the 2 8" woofers of each speaker to "load" more properly with the room and then the bass dynamics and slam can catch up with the rest of the system - or as much as a pair of well designed MOSFET amps will allow, but, if current performance is any indication, I expect all that will turn out very good, indeed.
Video/HT System: None
TV/Projector: Samsung 50" Plasma between the speakers, but no surround system.
Processor/Receiver/Amplifiers: None.
Speakers (Center, Surrounds, Sub): None.
Sources (DVD/VCR): Sony S770 Bluray player can be run into the main rig via front-panel toggle on the DIP Combo (but, it MUST be optical, not coax).
Other HT Gear: None.
Comments on HT System: None.
Other Interests/Hobbies/Occupation: Backyard astronomy, watching college football, family time, League Billiards (and drinking)...or is it League Drinking and billiards??...can never remember...

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