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roth audio mc4 tube amp and oli1 speaker? also REVO internet radio/ipod system

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Dear all


Anyone knows the build quality and sound of the roth audio mc4 cocoon tube?

It is also recomended to use with the OLi 1 bookshelf speaker ( fairly cheap though )


Please comment on this matching. or can you guys please recommend other speakers that has stylish look and match with this amp. I intend to use also with MAC notebook and IPOD


With REVO products, does anyone knows about their quality. THey are not cheap!


Thank you all






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The What Hi Fi website has a review for the Cacoon under the heading of "dock systems", and if you Google "Roth Cacoon reviews" etc. you might find more reviews. For about the same money you could buy a Rega Brio 3 integrated with Apples Ipod dock (still one of the best docks). The Brio is an incredible integrated amp, and is made in England. Along with the Almarro and Decware amps mentioned below, I can't think of three better amps on the market under a grand. The Brio/Apple dock combo will clobber the Cacoon. I had a Fatman Itube amp at my computer for awhile and though it sounded very good, it was no match for the Brio 3. If you are looking for something physically small, in the same price range, take a look at the Parasound Z series pre/power combo. And finally two more recommendations: if you are only going to use your amp at the computer in a near field situation the Almarro A-205A MK-II tube amp (hand built in Japan), or the Decware SE-84 MK-II tube amp (hand built in the U.S.A.) would be good choices. These amps will work in a full size system, but efficient speakers like Klipsch are a must. All the products I have recommended are not "flavour of the week" fad products. The OLi 1 speaker would be worth trying IMO. For the Decware and Almarro amps I would look for speakers 89db or more sensitivity. Hope this helps and does not confuse. If you want more speaker recommendations, let me know, as I am getting rather long winded here.




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Thank so much for the information. It is very long but yet informative.


To use notebook to connect wth the amplifier that you mentioned, how can i connect? connect the amp through headphone out by using one side jack ------ connect to 2 jacks at the amp ( i mean the connector 1 out to 2 to the amp left/right channel. OR i have to buy external sound card that has stereo out port to the amp.?


I intend to use the amp and speaker to drive MAC desktop, IPOD and MAC book.


so i look for stylish. with the cocoon i like because of the look, perhaps... for BRIO, i agree that it will sound whole lot better, but for it is more toward hifi system which i already have.


I think you understand that i need something to compliment with the MAC products as well. not too hifi look.


what about speaker recommendation u think is good for the cocoon?


With the apple dock+ apple remote, i owned one and it has line out at the back of the unit, this is where i connect to the amp.

The result is " the sound reproduction is worse than connecting through I-touch headphone jack out" WHy this happen?


i used to see portable line out from China www.ibasso.com

It claims that to get the sound straight from the line-out is much better than headphone jack . but why this is not the case with apple dock?


Please help! becoz if apple dock do nothing, so it is just the stand to look cool and to charge only.

I used to remember that when connect with the apple dock, the volume at the ipod cannot be adjusted because it only send full signal, and the volume will be adjusted at amp. However, this is not happening with IPOD TOUCH or new generation of apple dock.


Please help





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I will try to answer your questions in the order you asked them. Please bear with me as this could get lengthy. I would hate to see you make a wrong choice. I've done it more than once, and it hurts.

1) The two most common ways to hook a computer up to an amp or powered speakers is by either a 1/8" mini plug from your computer headphone out to two RCA at the amp, or USB or Firewire out to an external DAC (sound card) and from the DAC to the amp or powered speakers.

2) I understand your desire for style. My sound system matches my aluminum Imac almost as if it came out of the same factory. One reason I don't care for the made in China Cocoon is the fact that the Ipod plugs in with all those hot tubes surrounding it which can't be good for the Ipod. If it had a separate dock, that would be better. I cannot think of a miniature "Ipod amp" that would come close to what I recommended. One I didn't mention is the Flying Mole CA-S3 digital amp, What Hi-Fi is the only bad review I have seen on this amp. I personally would buy one before a Cocoon plus it looks more like it belongs with a Mac. The Cocoon, Fatman, Vuum, and Bluebird tube amps, to the best of my knowledge are outsourced to Dared in China who will apparently put anyone's name on their products.

3) Concerning Ipod docks there are three types: ones that use the ear bud out on the Ipod, ones that use line out from the Ipod, and ones that take the pure digital out from the Ipod. Stay away from the first mentioned, and the last mentioned are made by Wadia and Krell, and are pricey. I stick by my Apple recommendation for a dock. If you are getting better sound from the ear bud out than you are getting from the line out, something is wrong, and needs to be researched.

4) Speakers, here goes in order as they come to mind: Mirage OS3 sat, Monitor Audio Radius 90, or 90HD, Klipsch RB-10, Klipsch RSX-4, Klipsch XB-10, Energy RC Mini, or C-50, Tannoy Arena satelite, to name a few. I recommend a small sub with any of these speakers.


My computer stereo system has Mirage OmniSat v2 aluminum speakers (the predecessors to the OS3), silver Rega Brio 3 amp, and Klipsch RPW-10 sub. I am not happy with my DAC, and am considering the Apogee Duet which looks like it is made for Mac and gets good reviews and recommendations.


A nice compact system that would go nicely with a Mac would be the Flying Mole CAS-3 amp, Mirage OS3 sat speakers, and a compact 8" sub with high level inputs. The DAC I would recommend to start with depends on whether you have a new Macbook without Firewire or not. Hope this does not confuse you further. If possible, buy products you can return if you don't like them.







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  • 4 weeks later...

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Have a good day!!



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