Jump to content
IGNORED

Genelec 8050As in a Home System - Need Your Advice


Max Pace
 Share

Recommended Posts

Hi Folks,

 

I have to say, this is one of the best forums out there, in terms of the quality of advice and the sensibility of people posting. So, thought I'd get the benefit of your experience.

 

I'm aiming to build a "decent" (not perfect) home playback system.

 

Just got a pair of Genelecs 8050As two days back from B&H in NYC. These are my first "serious" speakers. Since I don't have any other audiophile equipment so far, I've hooked them up to my old Dell 610 laptop which has music of varying quality, some high quality music in FLAC, APE etc., but mostly low-bit MP3s. Currently have a direct hookup from plain vanilla HOSA miniplug to XLR cable to the Genelecs.

 

I don't have a fixed budget per se, but would like to keep the cost to say US$2-3K if I can.

 

Question to all you experienced folks is...what components should I invest in to get the best output. Here are my initial thoughts.

 

1. DAC to bypass the computer sound system...which one, though? This site mostly discusses Weiss and Berkeley, I'm sure there are others out there. Is Logitech Transporter a decent choice?

2. "Good" Cables?

3. Remote to control volume and playback features. This convenience is essential, and will also affect how much music I listen to. Transporter comes with one.

4. High quality music (I'm specifically looking for Indian classical and film playback music which is really hard to find in high quality). I'll check out the HD music sites mentioned on the site.

 

Do I need anything else?

 

Just FYI, even if I invest in a new computer, it'll probably be a windows based system (ideally a laptop), since I'll be using it for a variety of tasks. I'm also planning to get an iphone for internet connectivity on the go which I'll be using to listen to music on the go (realize it will not playback FLAC etc.).

 

Realize these might not be typical audiophile goals. Again, my aim to build a "decent" sounding home system. Another aim to to get this done so I can get on with my life (and start listening to music rather than spending all my time researching).

 

Your advice would direct impact my budget and how much money I spend on what components in the next few days.

 

Thanks in advance,

Max

 

Just getting started....[br]New Genelec 8050As, Airport Express.[br]New MacBook Pro 17-inch, 8GB RAM, 500GB, 7200rpm HDD.[br]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 

max,

 

Given that you've shown yourself to be 'immune' to audiophile assumptions that only audiophile companies offer high quality playback, and your use of the word 'decent' sounding system, I would strongly advise you to consider pro audio solutions. You've already deviated in that direction with selection of 'pro audio' biamped loudspeakers.

 

An interesting choice that I'd always wanted to consider (but was unwilling to move away from Mac OS X and/or Firewire to do so) is the Emu 1616M. the 'M' refers to the use of 'mastering' quality chips for DAC and ADC. Like most pro audio gear, you'll get features you don't likely need/want for simple playback. In this case, as with much pro audio gear, you'll at least get balanced outputs (albeit 1/4" rather than XLR that the Genelecs expect). RME Fireface is also something to consider, as are the various Apogee Dacs, plus Benchmark.

 

The gear I use only runs on Mac OS X, so I'm not much help for Windows specific.

 

The various pro audio forums (Gearslutz, etc.) are a very interesting (i'd say essential) complement to Chris's internet leading Computer Audiophile site.

 

enjoy

clay

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Clay, thanks much. I'll check out your recommendations for EMU and Gearslutz..

 

Meanwhile, I just got a few CDs and am trying to figure out how to rip them using exactcopy.

 

The difference while playing CD as opposed to some other low bit rate music is very evident already.

 

Max

 

Just getting started....[br]New Genelec 8050As, Airport Express.[br]New MacBook Pro 17-inch, 8GB RAM, 500GB, 7200rpm HDD.[br]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Clay,

 

Thanks again for your advice. Couple of questions.

 

1. Do you think that the lack of XLR inputs might cause a drop in quality of sound?

 

2. Do I need to attach a separate soundcard to my computer even if I get a DAC.

 

I'm planning to get a SPDIF output from my dell 610 dock to the DAC and then connect it to the genelecs.

 

Thanks much.

Max

 

Just getting started....[br]New Genelec 8050As, Airport Express.[br]New MacBook Pro 17-inch, 8GB RAM, 500GB, 7200rpm HDD.[br]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have a laptop and EMU requires installation of the 1010 soundcard in the computer...so EMU solution probably will not work.

 

Just getting started....[br]New Genelec 8050As, Airport Express.[br]New MacBook Pro 17-inch, 8GB RAM, 500GB, 7200rpm HDD.[br]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you would like to keep your (a) laptop as your main source (for now at least), I would consider getting something like the Lavry DA11, Benchmark DAC1HDR or the like. These have usB input from your PC, additional SpdIF inputs, volume control 8remotable), a headphone section (might be useful) and they sport symmetrical (xLR type) outputs to your Genelecs.

 

All you would need in addition would be a decent player/library software to handle your music collection (and fit your personal needs on categorizing etc.) - like Foobar2000, MediaMonkey or JRiver ...

 

It might be a little bit "costly" at a first sight, but you ould have a great sounding system without hazzle, and it could be expanded easy for future needs.

 

alternatively you moght take a look into ome of the (semi-)Pro audio interfaces from i.e. Edirol, TC Electronics, ESI, and so on. But beware that there might be problems using these with certain software players (ASIO driver in Foobar comes to my mind - which is a little bit picky ...).

 

Cheers

Harald

 

Esoterc SA-60 / Foobar2000 -> Mytek Stereo 192 DSD / Audio-GD NFB 28.38 -> MEG RL922K / AKG K500 / AKG K1000  / Audioquest Nighthawk / OPPO PM-2 / Sennheiser HD800 / Sennheiser Surrounder / Sony MA900 / STAX SR-303+SRM-323II

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 months later...

Great choice on the Genelec 8050A !

 

For now - The best value under the sun.

 

For a dac there is only one choice : Weiss DAC2 (mk2) (better than benchmark dac1 & lavry da11)

-

Weiss DAC2 (mk2) direct into your Genelecs

you can set the output voltage to a certain level (your prefered listening level with digital volume at 90 to 100%) and make the slight volume variations with the digital volume control - make additional room corrections (after acoustic room treatment) with an equalizer.

 

Ayre QB-9 is also as good but you will spend extra money on an preamp

 

Linn Akurate DS is the absolute best for real world money - but less value and you will need a preamp aswell.

 

For Cables start with Vovox direct s (unshielded cables) - extremely good value and becoming studio standard after mogami.

 

Good Luck !

 

Juergen

 

Why no I2S standard ? Logitech / Sonus wake up![br]IMO low power devices, such as DAC shall have analogue volume control and battery power. Why buy into preamps, power conditioners and power chords these days ?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As the Linn DS was mentioned, then I'll add that the Magik DS has a built in remote control pre-amp, all controllable via the same handset / remote used to select music, etc.

 

Eloise

 

Eloise

---

...in my opinion / experience...

While I agree "Everything may matter" working out what actually affects the sound is a trickier thing.

And I agree "Trust your ears" but equally don't allow them to fool you - trust them with a bit of skepticism.

keep your mind open... But mind your brain doesn't fall out.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Unfortunately the majik ds is not fully balanced - and its not granted that it could drive the 8050 (output impedance)

Furthermore the majik ds has digital volume control only - so it will be either too quiet with 100% digital or too loud. in that case - if you go under 70% digital volume you will loose too much bits and degrade soundquality.

 

btw the the weiss dac2 has its variable gain control only in its latest version - theres a little screw in the back and it will have the samplingrate-indication on the front plate. make that sure if you buy used or an old stock model.

 

happy listening

 

juergen

 

Why no I2S standard ? Logitech / Sonus wake up![br]IMO low power devices, such as DAC shall have analogue volume control and battery power. Why buy into preamps, power conditioners and power chords these days ?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I couldn't find a technical description of how the volume control on the DS products is implemented, but the Linn user community seems pretty happy running directly from the DS to a power amp - http://forums.linn.co.uk/bb/showthread.php?tid=2574&page=1. The user manual for the Genelec 8050A shows how a single ended output (RCA) can be wired to the balanced (XLR) input of the 8050A. The input impedance is listed as 10kOhms which should be easily driven by the Majik output.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share



×
×
  • Create New...