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What is the weakest link in my system


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OK have at it. I know I'm asking for it. What is the weakest link in my system that is the least expensive to purchase that will make a noticable SQ improvement?

My Set Up:

WD usb2 2TB external HD Only Music aiff’s on it + Time Machine BackUp of MacBook Pro ( I only use it for one thing and that to serve music to my DAC)

MacBook Pro 2013 8GB RAM 256 internal Flash drive usb3 and thunderbolt

AudirvanaPlus Always very latest Version

Regen

ifi DAC nano latest driver iFiHDUSBAudio_dfuapp5.1A.sh

Oyaide neo d+ Class A USB 2.0 to MacBook from REGEN

MusicLink Transparent Interface cables

Parasound 2100 Classic Preamp

Reference B&K 200.2 S2 Power amp 225W RMS

Paradigm 100 S series speakers

Klipsch Reference R-10SW Sub

Thanks

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A SET Tube Amp. With it, you'd want a 94dB or more efficient speakers.

 

Also: Clean Power, vibration isolation, Room diagnosis + acoustic treatment

Dedicated Line DSD/DXD | Audirvana+ | iFi iDSD Nano | SET Tube Amp | Totem Mites

Surround: VLC | M-Audio FastTrack Pro | Mac Opt | Panasonic SA-HE100 | Logitech Z623

DIY: SET Tube Amp | Low-Noise Linear Regulated Power Supply | USB, Power, Speaker Cables | Speaker Stands | Acoustic Panels

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The first thing I do before pulling out my shopping list is to identify the system's shortcomings.

Next I look for possible causes and then decide which equipment needs to be replaced to achieve improvements.

Otherwise I might just pick one randomly, or change cables.

 

Of course this is easier said than done but avoids sidesteps and saves money.

 

But I would tend to agree with 17629v2 on possible culprits...

 

So my question is: what are your complaints regarding the system's performance?

 

R

"Science draws the wave, poetry fills it with water" Teixeira de Pascoaes

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OP, I agree with everyone's suggestions. But here's something that's definitely not out of your price range. How did you integrate your subwoofer with your speakers? By ear? Or by measurement? If you didn't measure, you can buy a USB microphone from miniDSP website and learn to use Room EQ Wizard so that you can integrate your subwoofer and the speakers more seamlessly. Moreover, if you find there's a bass peak and you can't move your seat or speakers to accommodate and you can't afford room acoustic treatment, you can always use DSP to EQ it out.

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OP, I agree with everyone's suggestions. But here's something that's definitely not out of your price range. How did you integrate your subwoofer with your speakers? By ear? Or by measurement? If you didn't measure, you can buy a USB microphone from miniDSP website and learn to use Room EQ Wizard so that you can integrate your subwoofer and the speakers more seamlessly. Moreover, if you find there's a bass peak and you can't move your seat or speakers to accommodate and you can't afford room acoustic treatment, you can always use DSP to EQ it out.

 

Good advice.

 

P.S.: the mic can also help with improving loudspeaker placement.

"Science draws the wave, poetry fills it with water" Teixeira de Pascoaes

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The first thing I do before pulling out my shopping list is to identify the system's shortcomings.

Next I look for possible causes and then decide which equipment needs to be replaced to achieve improvements.

Otherwise I might just pick one randomly, or change cables.

 

Of course this is easier said than done but avoids sidesteps and saves money.

 

But I would tend to agree with 17629v2 on possible culprits...

 

So my question is: what are your complaints regarding the system's performance?

 

R

Well he said Preamp but awhile back I ask similar question and the Parasound Preamp came up so I bought it. and things sound better than with my old B&K pre which Im still trying to sale.

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OK have at it. I know I'm asking for it. What is the weakest link in my system that is the least expensive to purchase that will make a noticable SQ improvement?

My Set Up:

WD usb2 2TB external HD Only Music aiff’s on it + Time Machine BackUp of MacBook Pro ( I only use it for one thing and that to serve music to my DAC)

MacBook Pro 2013 8GB RAM 256 internal Flash drive usb3 and thunderbolt

AudirvanaPlus Always very latest Version

Regen

ifi DAC nano latest driver iFiHDUSBAudio_dfuapp5.1A.sh

Oyaide neo d+ Class A USB 2.0 to MacBook from REGEN

MusicLink Transparent Interface cables

Parasound 2100 Classic Preamp

Reference B&K 200.2 S2 Power amp 225W RMS

Paradigm 100 S series speakers

Klipsch Reference R-10SW Sub

Thanks

 

Looks great, if you want to try tweaking have you experimented with isolation devices to reduce vibrations? It is amazing how much improvement you can get. I don't think you need to touch your components themselves, all excellent stuff. Do you have a pic of your room and setup?

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A SET Tube Amp. With it, you'd want a 94dB or more efficient speakers.

 

Also: Clean Power, vibration isolation, Room diagnosis + acoustic treatment

My speakers are rated at 91db. I guess I'll look into getting the UMIK mic and calibrations software. Do I need another computer or can I use it with my MacBook that serves music to my DAC?

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As has been mentioned earlier, proper sub integration makes a surprising difference. In most rooms, you're actively cancelling important information with bass material that's out of phase with your main speakers.

 

If you must make an equipment change, consider the Benchmark products. They're derived from studio use and add very little to the signal.

 

I'm a fan of analog volume control, too.

 

https://benchmarkmedia.com/products/benchmark-dac1-digital-to-analog

 

Sent from my Nexus 6 using Tapatalk

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My speakers are rated at 91db. I guess I'll look into getting the UMIK mic and calibrations software. Do I need another computer or can I use it with my MacBook that serves music to my DAC?

 

You can use your MacBook. I'm reasonably certain you can use the USB microphone and the USB DAC at the same time. But I have to admit I haven't tried it myself since I don't own a MacBook.

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As has been mentioned earlier, proper sub integration makes a surprising difference. In most rooms, you're actively cancelling important information with bass material that's out of phase with your main speakers.

 

If you must make an equipment change, consider the Benchmark products. They're derived from studio use and add very little to the signal.

 

I'm a fan of analog volume control, too.

 

https://benchmarkmedia.com/products/benchmark-dac1-digital-to-analog

 

Sent from my Nexus 6 using Tapatalk

Are you saying the sub I'm using now is out of phase with my main's? The Klipsch Reference R-10SW Powered subwoofer at Crutchfield.com

Has a phase control I realize there not the best but all I can afford.

Sorry about the long link.

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It's a very capable sub, I use something even less capable from Monoprice. When I got the phase relationship right, I could turn down the main amp some.

 

It was most noticeable in midbass (low end of make voice, bottom string of guitar), not so much in the low bass.

 

That came as a surprise.

 

Sent from my HP 10 G2 Tablet using Tapatalk

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Power cord to the amp? Overall power supply. Power outlet?

I don't think I'd point to a 2k preamp as a weak link, especially that one...

 

Sent from my SM-T810 using Computer Audiophile mobile app

I have to agree here; the biggest bang for your dollars is the wall outlet like a Furutech GTX-D gold. Will improve overall sound of all your components beyond what you would think is possible. Definitely the route to take before switching components.

 

Sent from my Nexus 4 using Tapatalk

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Hi @Jamesroy,

This question is still unanswered and I find it important if we are to be of any help (as little as it can be):

 

So my question is: what are your complaints regarding the system's performance?

 

R

"Science draws the wave, poetry fills it with water" Teixeira de Pascoaes

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Hi @Jamesroy,

This question is still unanswered and I find it important if we are to be of any help (as little as it can be):

 

 

 

R

I know I am a pain in the butt but hear it goes.[emoji2]

 

We all do the same mistake when starting out; we buy equipment and keep trying to upgrade to the holy Grail because that is what hi-fi marketing encourages. What do we really want? For myself; to be able to listen to music and live an emotional experience, to be transported too the realm of the artist's expressions and forget life for the next few hours which is typically 4 to 6 hours. I can do this most of the time with the right albums such as Low Roar Low Roar.

 

This was only achieved when we took care of the outlets and then chose the equipment after. I recommend to all my clients and friends to start there as to be able to reach synergy and that wow factor everybody is looking for.

 

I could recommend the best preamp I have ever heard that was compared to 3 ML preamps, including the 15000Usd$ (close to 20k CAD) reference model, a SimAudio unit (7000$) on Dunlavy SC-VI This unit was way above those units to all in the room. Cost of this preamp 4000 Cad. After this experience over a four month time period I can only conclude that a preamp is really key to the heartbeat of the audio chain.

 

We could easily hear the differences in performance when plugging from a hospital grade plug to the GTX-d. The levels of performance are not as great between units with the hospital grade plug.

 

The point is we could of chosen a lesser unit if the wall outlets where not tops.....

 

Sent from my Nexus 4 using Tapatalk

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Thanks for the reply. I just bought the Parasound 2100 classic preamp it replaced an old B&K Reference Preamp

 

I was just going off the list of components you provided. How long you've had the components for wasn't given. Regardless, I would still make the same recommendation. One option you may want to consider, is trading your 2100 for something higher up in the Parasound line. The Halo P5 is not that expensive, but it comes with a built in DAC and has bass management features for your sub. Its a nice clean solution, and while not state of the art, I think it will make a very big improvement overall.

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I was just going off the list of components you provided. How long you've had the components for wasn't given. Regardless, I would still make the same recommendation. One option you may want to consider, is trading your 2100 for something higher up in the Parasound line. The Halo P5 is not that expensive, but it comes with a built in DAC and has bass management features for your sub. Its a nice clean solution, and while not state of the art, I think it will make a very big improvement overall.

Thanks looking into trading up to Halo P5. Would you say the DAC in the P5 is better than my ifi NANO? And should I still use the REGEN with the P5?

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