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Sean Henderson's Constantly Tweaking System
Last Update: December 05, 2004 at 11:55:25 IP Address:
Amplifier: Modified... Amber Seried 70:
Two(2)configured for mono. Many internal modifications, as I contacted the designer and did almost all the mods he suggested plus better caps and resistors in the signal path.
Preamplifier (or None if Integrated): Modified... Hafler DH-110:
All of Musical Concepts mods, plus 'Platinum' series resistor upgrades in the signal path, Blsckgate Caps, TYD volumn pot, TARA Labs RSC internal wireing, Cardas RCA's, external power supply.
Speakers: Dick Olster/Martin Colloms designed 'Dahlia's':
8' Audax TX2025RSN Midrange, 1' MB Quart MCD25M Titanium Dome Tweeter. Crossover upgraded to Goertz Inductors, Mills Resistors and Audio Cap Theta Capacitor. Separate high and low pass boards, TARA RSC internal wire.

Subwoofer: Velodyne ULD-12. Upgraded external control module and upgraded power supply and signal path component on internal amplifier.

CD Player/DAC: Modified... Arcam CD-72
Extensive Dynamat damping to every surface on the chassis and the Transport, Blackgate Caps, better resister, AD825 op amps, Cardas RCA's, TARA Labs internal wiring. Better than FMJ performance
Turntable/Phono Stage: Modified... AR Turntable(1983):
Sumiko Premier MMT Arm/Grado XTZ II Cartridge
Damping material and mass added throughout, Custom isolated AC motor module, spring rates set to 3 Hz. TARA Labs RSC wire from arm to Cardas Female RCA mounted to turntable to allow easy cable changes.

Phono Stage:
The pre-amp has a much modified phono stage. However, because of the limited gain, high output cartridges must be used.

Other Source(s): Yamaha Model T-2 FM Tuner:
Excellent sound "stock". Hard to justify modifing this as I do not use it that much.
Other Accessories/Room/Misc.:
Speaker Cables/Interconnects: TARA Labs: RSC Air 3 Interconnects and 2 Pair of Ref Gen 2 Speaker Cable for Biwiring.
Other (Power Conditioner, Racks etc.): Constantly changing AC Cable designs to determine the best match possible.
Tweaks: Too many to list...
Room Size (LxWxH): 14 x 12 x 8
Room Comments/Treatments: Damping on wall behind speakers and corner damping for bass control.
Speakers front baffles are roughly 4.5 feet from rear wall and 3 feet from side walls
Music Preferences and Comments:
Music Used (Genre/Selections): Jazz, Rock, Country, Bluegrass, Folk, World, Classical, etc...
The better the system gets, the more types of music I find that I like.
System Goals/Comments: I am always after increased detail, resolution and speed. Lately, I have been playing with AC Power Cables and the differences these make is unbelievable.
System Strengths: VERY detailed and dynamic. Very articulate imaging with good recordings. What most visitors comment on is that the system is listenable at high levels for long periods of time due to the very low noise floor and distortion levels. I found that being able to get the detail AND the listenability was difficult until I eliminated many sources of distortion/noise by upgradeing the electrical components on the boards or modifing the circuit designs.
System Weaknesses: The CD Player. While I like the Arcam CD-72 a great deal, I plan on upgradeing to something better.... ARC CD-3 or whatever is better at the time of purchase.

Turntable/Arm... For serious listening, the turntable is my main source. I have had various tables on loan and also heard table comparision in other system where we changed out tables... ALWAYS with the same cartridges used for the comparision. I have heard some areas that where better than my present modified table but not enough to prompt a change, at least that I can afford anyway. Having said that, I like the Basis Debut with a Graham arm, but alas... I cannot afford one.

Speakers: Well... I am always after more detail, resolution and dynamics. I am looking into a design with two PHL midrange's and a Raven 2 tweeter and killer crossover hardware.

Wire and Cable: Lord knows there is better stuff out there. TARA Labs, The ONE is on the list... used as new is beyond my means.

Video/HT System: None

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