Archive for March, 2008

Reference Recordings HRx Stunning Recordings

hrx-small.jpgYesterday saw over 30 BAAS members auditioning the stunning new library of high resolution (24/176) recordings based on the Reference Recordings (RR) master tapes.

The ‘BAAS Sessions’ represent the first public demonstration of the recordings and the recommended hardware to play them (based on a PC Sound card). As such, they went beyond the various previews at CES.

A clear highlight of the day was the opportunity to do back-to-back comparisons of ‘CD quality’ (16/44) to HRx. To my ear, the difference was rather obvious, akin to the difference between 192 bps MP3 and CD. And that says a lot.

› Continue reading

Sunday, March 30th, 2008 Bob, Equipment, Events, Music Comments Off

RobertD’s System

General location:

  • San Ramon

Digital Sources:

  • Parasound DVP1000
  • Marantz DV8400
  • Marantz CC4000

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Sunday, March 30th, 2008 Member's Systems Comments Off

The First Recorded Music – Edison Was Second

edison.jpgWe were all taught that Tom Edison made the first recordings, using his famous wax cylinders. This recounting certainly fits well with our typical US-centric mindset.

As it turns out, this article in Nature reports that Edison was probably two decades late. It turns out that Edison was probably bested by a Frenchman (Edourard-Leon Scott), who recorded music on a visual medium using a phonautograph.

But did the 1860 phonautograph technology really work, i.e., does it create reproducible music?

Listen to this MP3 for yourself, and come to your own conclusion!

Friday, March 28th, 2008 Bob, General 1 Comment

DerrickY’s System

I am in the Oakland area and welcome interested visitors.

Main listening system


  • Air Tight ATM-3 tube monoblocks modified by Tom Tutay for main speakers, 1960s Mullard El34s
  • Onkyo Grand Integra M-508 -to run Subwoofers


  • Aloia Pst11.01 with Separate inductive power supply


  • Well Tempered Classic, Sumiko SHO med output MC
  • PS Audio Phonolink


  • Audio Matiere Dialogue transport
  • Sony CPD-x779es transport modified by APL
  • VAC DAC 2 Mk 2 D/A converter
  • Genesis Digital Lens


  • Celestion Sl700 Special Editions
  • Celestion System 6000 Subwoofers
  • Celestion DLp6000 crossover

Power Conditioning:

  • PS Audio p1000


  • Straightwire,Virtual Dynamics,Kimber, Yamamoto,

Room Treatments:

  • Shakti Holographs
  • Argent RoomLens
  • Michael Green Room Tunes

Living Room System 2


  • Klimo Linnet Tube Monoblocks-70s Siemens El34s


  • Jeff Rowland Consanance w/ Phono Module


  • Michell GyroDec, Linn Akito 2 tonearm, Sumiko SHO Med-output MC
  • Lazarus MC tube Step up


  • Sony Cpd-x707Es transport
  • AudioLogic 34 D/a converter
  • Genesis Digital Lens


  • Michael Green Chameleon IIIs modified by Jason Serinus

Power Conditioning:

  • Dedicated lines analog/digital/amplification/
  • PS Audio P600


  • Straight Wire Crescendo speaker, Virtuoso, Yamamoto

All Systems have Versasound Copper Damping Sheets, Connections CAIG
de-oxified, and Mapleshade Audio Silver contact enhanced.

Sorry for the long list, this is what 20 years of audio gear obesssion gets you.

Monday, March 24th, 2008 Member's Systems 1 Comment

You Know You’re a Crazy A’phile When….

33mfd-clarity.jpgYou start buying capacitors for your speaker crossovers that are as large as a baseball and weigh a half-pound each!

These ClarityCap SA’s are for the midrange circuit of my Usher Dancer’s.

It’s the type of thing Alon might put in his Magico’s. (Actually, this part is a bit low-end for the Magico!)

Monday, March 24th, 2008 Bob, Equipment, Member's Systems 1 Comment

Describing What We Hear

Describing Flaws in Freq Response

We have all been in hundreds of discussions centering on a description of “what we heard” – usually to evaluate the quality of a given system, component, mix, or piece of music. And we’ve all been alternately mesmerized and frustrated by the unusual things that we read and hear, such as:

  • “Where’s the air? The music has no air or sense of space!”
  • “God that’s sweet and syrupy. Makes me want to cry.”; or
  • “There’s just more ‘there’ there!” (with emotion)

Perhaps we’ve even used these phrases ourselves.

But what do they mean? Is there any logic at play?

The chart above attempts to better quantify these statements, at least for their frequency domain manifestations. The shaded horizontal frequency axis extends from 20hz on the left to 12Khz on the right.

(Note: I’ve encountered this illustration several times in my reading, and I can’t recall the source. Sorry about the poor image quality – not my doing. Click on the picture to see a bigger version!)

Let me explain… › Continue reading

Tuesday, March 11th, 2008 Bob, General 1 Comment

WillC’s System


  • Sony JA333ES Mini Disc Recorder
  • Sony C555ES 5-disc SACD/CD player
  • Pioneer PDR-w839 CD Recorder


  • None


  • NAD C162 Stereo Preamp

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Thursday, March 6th, 2008 Member's Systems Comments Off

WilliamT’s System

Digital Source:

  • Abbingdon Music Research: CD-77 (pic)

Analog Source:

  • Raven One Turntable (pic)


  • Dynavector: 507 MKII (pic)

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Wednesday, March 5th, 2008 Member's Systems Comments Off

DanF’s System


  • Sony CX90es
  • Monarchy Audio DIP
  • Sony DVPCX995V


  • None


  • Sony TAE-9000es

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Wednesday, March 5th, 2008 Member's Systems Comments Off

Monster Cable vs Coat Hangers


If you haven’t seen the latest “audiophile cables are hype” saga, click here for the Engadget article (courtesy of RichardT).

On a related note, RichardT (a BAAS member) shares the results of his own informal testing:

Two friends and I recently did a careful test of audio input cables using two high end cables and a worst case pair of beat up radio shack cables. We made a switcher that instantly let us go back and forth seamlessly. Each of us sat in the sweet spot and did the test many times. After listening and going back and fourth, we each found that to some extent we could hear a difference and without prompting identify which cable we were hearing. The rotting radio shack cable beat out the highest end cable by the way. Our conclusion was that the overall sound of the systems (we had two under test, one with tube components running Vandersteens, than Spicas and the other with Magnepans and modified transistor amps,) was determined mostly by the componentry and least by the cables. If you changed a speaker or a preamp, thats a big deal, a hook up wire, not so much. I think it all contributes and I’m not ready to throw away my interconnects and use coat hangers just yet but appreciate the test.

Let the comments begin!

Note: You must register in order to comment!

Wednesday, March 5th, 2008 General 1 Comment

ChrisK’s System

Digital Sources:

  • Arcam DV137
  • HTPC (FLAC) – ditching this, tired of dealing with it
  • Squeezebox
  • Lavry DA10 DAC

Analog Sources:

  • Denon TU-660 AM/FM Tuner
  • Yamaha turntable w/Grado cartridge & Rolls Bellari VP129 phono amp (turntable recently stored for a while)


  • Rotel RSP-1068 Pre/Processor

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Tuesday, March 4th, 2008 Member's Systems Comments Off

DavidH’s System


  • Oppo DV-970HD Universal Player
  • Cambridge Audio Azur 840C Upsampling CD Player
  • Sony SCD222ES SACD player – Modified by
  • Oritech DAC
  • Teac R-WD 250 CD Recorder
  • Tivo Series 3 HD DVR Dual Recorder w THX 5.1 Sound
  • iPod Gen 5


  • Oracle Delhi MKV Turntable – Turbo Power Supply – SME Series lV Arm – Shelter 90X cartridge
  • Jolida 402 Tubed Tuner


  • Audio Research LS25 MKll
  • Audio Research PH3 Phono Stage (modified)
  • Jolida JD9 Tubed Phono Stage
  • Dynaco Pass 3

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Sunday, March 2nd, 2008 Member's Systems 1 Comment

Craig & Christina E’s System


  • Denon DVM 4800 DVD


  • SME Model 10A turntable with model 20/30 arm mounting plate
  • Shelter 901 cartridge
  • EAR 834P phono-preamp modified by Scott Frankland Tube Amps and Services
  • EAR MC-4 step-up transformer


  • Quicksilver remote preamp w/Amperex A-frame 6DJ8s

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Sunday, March 2nd, 2008 Member's Systems 2 Comments
March 2008
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