Author Topic: My new amp  (Read 23674 times)

Offline gamve

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Re: My new amp
« Reply #80 on: January 24, 2014, 04:15:46 PM »
I got this Cardas CCBP-s unplated pure copper as my binding posts: http://www.partsconnexion.com/product7444.html

I chose it over Eichmann because I think the Eichmann is a bit flimsy. I broke a couple already  >:(

I hope the Cardas sounds as good as the Eichmann.

Andy, the Cu WBT next gen is the one to get US$ 88: http://www.partsconnexion.com/product9725.html

There's another Cu WBT on sale US$ 39.95, could be pretty good and save you some bucks: http://www.partsconnexion.com/wbt0274cu.html


 ;D

Hi William,
These terilliam copper posts are very good sounding units. The copper is very soft be careful that you do not overtighten them.
You might find that these posts are not much stronger mechanically than the Eichmans.
Cheers
Graham

Offline hedalfa

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Re: My new amp
« Reply #81 on: January 24, 2014, 05:49:17 PM »
Hi William

I like the Leak a lot. Still have Sovteks in it at the moment which are pretty awful. They are really limiting the magic. Also there has been a lot of changes to my system around the same time. I have new speaker cabinets (Shindo style cabinets that Damian made), new speaker wires (Auditorium 23 also from Damian), new turntable (Micro-seiki), new tonearm (Fidelity Research), new cartridge (Garrott P77i), and new phono stage (Graham Slee Reflex M).

I am getting a great result so far, but need to do some tuning as while the bass is very good I'd like it better still. Only minor really, but I'm hoping I can get it sorted. The results are a long way ahead of where I was before!  ;D

I will be replacing the front baffle (see pic) with a veneered one when funds allow.

Let me know how you go with the new speaker cabinets.

Cheers, Andy

Ps. To give some idea of scale the TV is 50 inches.
 
Pps. The Rainbow Diffusor is for sale at $500 a pop  :P

I finally got a chance to have a good listen to Andy's new system a couple of days ago.

As you can see in the attached pic, Andy's using a Shindo style cabinet where the back panel is half open. Beautiful cabinet! Thumbs up! To Damian, I'd like to order some cabinets and hifi racks please  ;D

During listening session, Andy covered his 55 inch LED TV with a blanket, wise move there as I usually find the reflection from the glass panel can be a bit distracting. What I like the most about his system is that how his system can convey music in the most musical way, gone are the edginess and brittleness of the modern hifi sound. People will say it's coloured but when the media and the so called expert hifi reviewers in general tell us that lean and analytical sounding is fcukin' ACCURATE  >:(  then I will choose coloured anytime anywhere.

I notice his system has all the fundamental attributes to be a great one such as sheer musicality, very engaging and organic, would love to have more harmonic richness, it's there but more would be better. No digital harshness I could detect anywhere. Some things that he needs to address are slight dryness and thinness. His system needs more body and weight. I believe he's got a few tricks up on his sleeves already with the help of our friend Duc in Melbourne  ;)

There's also a bit of smear in sound when he was playing bass heavy track. I could hear the vibration of the cabinets causing the smear and the sound became less focus. He's already got a pair of vintage Goodmans Sherwood cabinets to address this issue. I just hope the new cabinets will not thin out his system more. This is a very hard thing to get balance.

Andy, you've done very well there with your Goodmans Axiom 300 (great driver by the way!) and the Leak Stereo 20. Not far away from a great sounding system that we always crave. I personally can't wait to listen to your system again with the new upgrades on the way. I wish you all the best in your journey! Thanks so much for a nice listening session, man I stayed there for 3 hours and it simply felt like 10 minutes at most, I guess that what usually happens when an engaging and musical system is presented, just like when I first listened to stevenvalve's system in the mountains.

Cheers,
William


Good review William, one which highlights strengths as well as things to possibly work on is appreciated. There is a lot of potential locked up in these Goodmans drivers they have much more resolution than many people realise.  8) 8) 8) 8)  People may be surprised when Andy has these at the next level.  
« Last Edit: January 24, 2014, 05:52:24 PM by hedalfa »

Offline Jehuty

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Re: My new amp
« Reply #82 on: January 24, 2014, 06:05:17 PM »
I have no doubt that the Goodmans Axiom 300 can be a lot better again! Far out, for the price Andy's got the drivers it's a STEAL!
Not all that matters can be measured, not all that can be measured matters.

Offline Jehuty

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Re: My new amp
« Reply #83 on: January 24, 2014, 06:07:11 PM »
Hi William,
These terilliam copper posts are very good sounding units. The copper is very soft be careful that you do not overtighten them.
You might find that these posts are not much stronger mechanically than the Eichmans.
Cheers
Graham

Hi Graham,

Thanks for the warning, I'll keep that in mind not to overtighten them. Good to know that they sound pretty good  :)

Cheers,
William
Not all that matters can be measured, not all that can be measured matters.

Offline ozmillsy

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Re: My new amp
« Reply #84 on: January 24, 2014, 09:19:31 PM »
It's the hardest balance to get,  that fine line between lovely rich (flesh on bone) body,  and extended air detail and speed.

I reckon real 'presence' is easy to lose, and hard to get back.   As Steven and Mario keep saying (and it has sunk in with me guys) it all starts at the source. 

The phono upgrade looks to be a great move.   Alot of people rate the slee's,  but they'll never do what a good tube phono can, IMHO.

Pick a date Andy, so we can all set it aside. :)
It's all about the music,, not the equipment.

Offline ozmillsy

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Re: My new amp
« Reply #85 on: January 24, 2014, 09:42:45 PM »
Oh BTW, great write up William.

We should have a house rule that open feedback is always welcomed.

The only way to move forward, is by working together and sharing honestly what we hear.  

Next time you visit William, I expect some feedback, warts and all.  ;)
« Last Edit: January 24, 2014, 09:45:39 PM by ozmillsy »
It's all about the music,, not the equipment.

Offline springcreek

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Re: My new amp
« Reply #86 on: January 24, 2014, 10:36:32 PM »
Good points Oz, advice and constructive criticism is always welcome.

I am always craving more body, weight and wetness, but it is easy to go too far. The new phono stage should be a big step forward and allow me to tune things further.

I will set a date in the coming days.

Cheers

Offline Jehuty

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Re: My new amp
« Reply #87 on: January 25, 2014, 11:40:02 AM »
Hi Andrew,

Thanks. I'd like to hear your improved Radford vs Leak again if possible. That would be very interesting.

Cheers,
William
Not all that matters can be measured, not all that can be measured matters.

Offline ozmillsy

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Re: My new amp
« Reply #88 on: January 25, 2014, 12:56:31 PM »
Thanks. I'd like to hear your improved Radford vs Leak again if possible. That would be very interesting.
You're welcome to bring around the Leak anytime.  The Radford has been 'fixed' rather than improved,  all I did was put back in some caps (that had previously been removed).

Getting feedback from visitors is really invaluable, IMHO.  Our audio systems are like coffee.  If you drink the same brand/type of coffee everyday, you get accustomed to the taste and it seems normal.  Audio is the same.

A fresh set of ears, and willingess to describe what you hear,  goes a long way for the owner.
« Last Edit: January 25, 2014, 01:03:02 PM by ozmillsy »
It's all about the music,, not the equipment.

Offline vitavoxdude

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Re: My new amp
« Reply #89 on: January 25, 2014, 03:20:03 PM »
Oz

Quote
Getting feedback from visitors is really invaluable, IMHO.  Our audio systems are like coffee.  If you drink the same brand/type of coffee everyday, you get accustomed to the taste and it seems normal.  Audio is the same.

I think this can also lead to an endless merry go round of upgrades; whilst this is fine if you actively seek the comments from others if you are happy with what you have then keep it.  To be told negative things just pulls the smile form your face and is not too healthy long term IMV.  It's a bit like life partners, we all know they are not exactly what we'd like but substituting them for a different model does not always bring long term satisfaction.

Changing out items such as binding posts will bring a tiny incremental improvement but if the amp is not up to driving the speakers in the room you have then wasted time / money.  I do applaud those dedicated types who are willing to experiment but taking a 1000 dollar amp and spending another 1K on it does not turn it into a 2K + amp.

I read that more body and wetness is looked for.  I'd suggest looking at different valves and amps long term.  I have owned a Leak Stereo 20 and Leak TL12.1's; the later totally kicks sand in the face of its cheaper sibling, a case of the top of the line being compared to the cheaper model, harsh but the truth.  A friend of mine used to use the term " it's pointless polishing a turd as at the end of it all you are still left with a turd".  In car terms it would be taking a ford fiesta and trying to turn it into F1 car, they all have 4 wheels but the end result is quite different.

My end advice is get the pair of speakers you can live with in the room where you relax and enjoy music then put the best source (KDAC) up front and fit an amp to taste be it Vv or SS in between.  Speakers set the major tonality of the outcome and everything else like the detail and rhythm comes from the front end.  It's a shame all the dealers moved away from the switchable speaker banks, at least this enabled rapid changes on the back end, this enabled you to hear how bright the yamahas were in comparison to the like's of Kef' and Celestions, how efficient the Klipsh's were compared to most others etc.

Beauty is in the eye and ear of the beholder, magazines and others views on your 'system' will keep you ever chasing your tail and a trail as long as your arm of discarded / sold equipment.  Check out SNA second hand section of for sale items........................

By all means change your brand of coffee, but if you love the one you have, why change it.  This sounds like a feminine thing of change for changes sake.  Before I'd be thinking of changing out binding posts I would want to make sure that all the rubbish speaker manufactures fit inside their built down to a price boxes is improved first, then the caps etc.  Trying to change the basic character of a system requires a change in approach to the design, beyond most and totally impractical IMO.

Anyway enough wittering from me, just bear in mind the end game and spend accordingly.  Enjoy your travels and try to avoid the audionovosa of doubting thomas; 10 people will all criticise different elements and struggle to agree most things audio!
V ;)
We all like different things so lets all agree to disagree and if any common ground is found then worship it.  Mine is the KD hence being present on this forum.

Offline hedalfa

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Re: My new amp
« Reply #90 on: January 25, 2014, 05:43:34 PM »
Oz

Quote
Getting feedback from visitors is really invaluable, IMHO.  Our audio systems are like coffee.  If you drink the same brand/type of coffee everyday, you get accustomed to the taste and it seems normal.  Audio is the same.

I think this can also lead to an endless merry go round of upgrades; whilst this is fine if you actively seek the comments from others if you are happy with what you have then keep it.  To be told negative things just pulls the smile form your face and is not too healthy long term IMV.  It's a bit like life partners, we all know they are not exactly what we'd like but substituting them for a different model does not always bring long term satisfaction.

Changing out items such as binding posts will bring a tiny incremental improvement but if the amp is not up to driving the speakers in the room you have then wasted time / money.  I do applaud those dedicated types who are willing to experiment but taking a 1000 dollar amp and spending another 1K on it does not turn it into a 2K + amp.

I read that more body and wetness is looked for.  I'd suggest looking at different valves and amps long term.  I have owned a Leak Stereo 20 and Leak TL12.1's; the later totally kicks sand in the face of its cheaper sibling, a case of the top of the line being compared to the cheaper model, harsh but the truth.  A friend of mine used to use the term " it's pointless polishing a turd as at the end of it all you are still left with a turd".  In car terms it would be taking a ford fiesta and trying to turn it into F1 car, they all have 4 wheels but the end result is quite different.

My end advice is get the pair of speakers you can live with in the room where you relax and enjoy music then put the best source (KDAC) up front and fit an amp to taste be it Vv or SS in between.  Speakers set the major tonality of the outcome and everything else like the detail and rhythm comes from the front end.  It's a shame all the dealers moved away from the switchable speaker banks, at least this enabled rapid changes on the back end, this enabled you to hear how bright the yamahas were in comparison to the like's of Kef' and Celestions, how efficient the Klipsh's were compared to most others etc.

Beauty is in the eye and ear of the beholder, magazines and others views on your 'system' will keep you ever chasing your tail and a trail as long as your arm of discarded / sold equipment.  Check out SNA second hand section of for sale items........................

By all means change your brand of coffee, but if you love the one you have, why change it.  This sounds like a feminine thing of change for changes sake.  Before I'd be thinking of changing out binding posts I would want to make sure that all the rubbish speaker manufactures fit inside their built down to a price boxes is improved first, then the caps etc.  Trying to change the basic character of a system requires a change in approach to the design, beyond most and totally impractical IMO.

Anyway enough wittering from me, just bear in mind the end game and spend accordingly.  Enjoy your travels and try to avoid the audionovosa of doubting thomas; 10 people will all criticise different elements and struggle to agree most things audio!
V ;)

Lots of good points here.  I have gone through a few amps rather than go through extensive upgrades. Though if an is amp doing a lot of things right its worth persisting with. Yet buying amp mainly because its cheap and then throwing the kitchen sink at it may not be ideal. Paul Baker fixed some issues with some prior work on my VAC 300B amp. He still rated it behind Marios amps, maybe it still is. Yet putting in RCA red base valves made a huge difference it was the synergy thing it really just came on song. Glad I persisted with as it now sounds like it should as it wasn't build in a way that cut corners. It has amazing drive more than other amps I have heard that have higher quoted output but doesn't sound rough around the edges.  

Offline ozmillsy

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Re: My new amp
« Reply #91 on: January 25, 2014, 05:49:41 PM »
Synergy is balancing on a knifes edge.  It doesnt take much to lose the magic, and likewise sometimes all it takes is a few tweaks.

Geez it's a bit absurd to be comparing a Leak 20 to a turd !!!     I thought Stevens 20 sounded just superb.
« Last Edit: January 28, 2014, 07:51:26 AM by ozmillsy »
It's all about the music,, not the equipment.

Offline ozmillsy

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Re: My new amp
« Reply #92 on: January 25, 2014, 06:01:00 PM »
Anyway enough wittering from me, just bear in mind the end game and spend accordingly.  Enjoy your travels and try to avoid the audionovosa of doubting thomas; 10 people will all criticise different elements and struggle to agree most things audio!
V, there is alot of wisdom in your wittering. 

 Feedback is to be taken in context,  no one knows your system better than you do. You spend the most time in front of it.   I will always listen and consider what people say.   Whether I action anything is a totally different matter.  Give people a little credit.
It's all about the music,, not the equipment.

Offline springcreek

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Re: My new amp
« Reply #93 on: January 25, 2014, 09:31:03 PM »
I certainly tune to my taste, not others but I still value their opinion even if I don't always follow their advice.

I think the stock Stereo 20 is good but quite limited, but fully tweaked is a different beast altogether. Better than any commercial amp I've heard so far and tuned to my taste.

Being able to take decent kit like the Leak and Axiom 300 and tune my system to get the sound I want is key to my audio happiness...beats the buying and selling treadmill most audiophiles seem to be on. Also helps to have a sound in your head that you are chasing.
« Last Edit: January 25, 2014, 10:54:43 PM by springcreek »

Offline Jehuty

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Re: My new amp
« Reply #94 on: January 25, 2014, 10:50:45 PM »
I thought Stevens 20 sounded just superb.

So did I...and probably for all attendees of last year's Canberra GTG. It just does almost everything right. I love that little amp.
Not all that matters can be measured, not all that can be measured matters.

Offline springcreek

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Re: My new amp
« Reply #95 on: January 25, 2014, 10:56:35 PM »
Agree Stevens Leak was great and sent me on the path to find one  ;D

Offline Jehuty

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Re: My new amp
« Reply #96 on: January 25, 2014, 11:04:53 PM »
taking a 1000 dollar amp and spending another 1K on it does not turn it into a 2K + amp.

No, it doesn't. It goes for A LOT more than that  ;D

Would you like to read some interesting comments on SNA when the Leak was pitted against big dollar Gryphon and Arion monoblocks? Here where it started V: http://www.stereo.net.au/forums/index.php?/topic/53554-amp-gtg/page-3#entry993085

How I'd love to have a pair of Leak TL12.1 but at the rate they're going now I need to win a lotto....or sell a kidney maybe...

Cheers,
William
Not all that matters can be measured, not all that can be measured matters.

Offline vitavoxdude

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Re: My new amp
« Reply #97 on: January 26, 2014, 02:39:50 PM »
Yes sorry about the analogy of turds and hifi, it was not meant as a slur on the Leak.  Harold J Leak stole others circuitry  because he could (his lawyers were more expensive - do your research) so it does not put him in a favorable light for some.  The TL12's and Troughline tuner were the companies best products.

You have to have been there to know how the stereo 20 stacks up against other valve amps and whilst it's a nice sounding unit with the 'right' speakers it no goliath slayer.  By all means spend bucks on improving components but remember at the end of it all its the same amp with top parts.  The el84 valve sounds good with QUAD electrostatics (57's) and Lowthers in large horns in that design but falls a bit flat with more difficult speakers.

If you do a direct comparison with the TL12 / Williamson / Radford St15 you can draw your own conclusions.  As this site is all about sharing knowledge for the betterment of its members I thought it prudent just to put things into a proper perspective.

My bias having owned probably >40 amplifiers is the zero feedback SE valves produce the most music but limits your choice in speakers to horns or large reflex designs where efficiency is the most important feature.

It is still a classic amp but so are those Macintosh, Lumlies, Lux etc where the design is less limited by power output / circuit / output transformers.
V ;)
We all like different things so lets all agree to disagree and if any common ground is found then worship it.  Mine is the KD hence being present on this forum.

Offline Jehuty

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Re: My new amp
« Reply #98 on: January 26, 2014, 10:52:47 PM »
Well said V. When I have money, I'll hunt those TL12 monoblocks  8)
Not all that matters can be measured, not all that can be measured matters.

Offline stevenvalve

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Re: My new amp
« Reply #99 on: January 27, 2014, 01:55:18 AM »
Yes sorry about the analogy of turds and hifi, it was not meant as a slur on the Leak.  Harold J Leak stole others circuitry  because he could (his lawyers were more expensive - do your research) so it does not put him in a favorable light for some.  The TL12's and Troughline tuner were the companies best products.

You have to have been there to know how the stereo 20 stacks up against other valve amps and whilst it's a nice sounding unit with the 'right' speakers it no goliath slayer.  By all means spend bucks on improving components but remember at the end of it all its the same amp with top parts.  The el84 valve sounds good with QUAD electrostatics (57's) and Lowthers in large horns in that design but falls a bit flat with more difficult speakers.

If you do a direct comparison with the TL12 / Williamson / Radford St15 you can draw your own conclusions.  As this site is all about sharing knowledge for the betterment of its members I thought it prudent just to put things into a proper perspective.

My bias having owned probably >40 amplifiers is the zero feedback SE valves produce the most music but limits your choice in speakers to horns or large reflex designs where efficiency is the most important feature.

It is still a classic amp but so are those Macintosh, Lumlies, Lux etc where the design is less limited by power output / circuit / output transformers.
V ;)
Well said V. A world beater no, and not for head bangers, No real power, not much bass weight, But I like my full on modified Leak stereo 20, I do for a few reasons, in a highly modified state, they sound involving, sweet, and pretty, they are just the best amp on violins I have heard, and for many reasons the best amp I have heard in along time.