Listening #153 Contacts

Sidebar: Contacts

AV Options. Tel: (847) 329-9549. Web:

Sundazed Music, PO Box 85, Coxsackie, NY 12051. Tel: (518) 731-6262. Fax: (518) 731-9492. Web:


tonykaz's picture

It's a wonderful Record Player.

The VPI will crush it sonically and massively.

But I still love the darn thing, not that I own one.

I did Import a couple hundred LP-12s direct from England and sold em right under the nose of Audiophile Systems.

I also sold the VPI as one of Harry's dealers.

That was 1982-5: Vinyl's Glory Days.

Then Vinyl died, r.i.p.

Somehow, folks are trying to keep Vinyl Alive.

People own thousands of Records, not many people but there are some out there (still) like Todd the Vinyl Junkie in Montana.

A few of my 1980s customers are still active in Vinyl but only a very small remnant.

Vinyl folks still dominate the Printed Press. We get to see Snaps of $30,000 Turntables and $5,000 Phono Cartridges. Is anyone buying them?

All my remaining Southeastern Michigan HighEnd Audio Dealers ( 2 ) are part time outfits. My Esoteric Audio was full-time that bleed to death from the CD.

Today the Internet bleeds all Brick & Mortar outfits that aren't Food & Spirits, Hair or New Cars. ( or Check-cashing outfits and Banks )

Harmon is reporting Headphones to be a ( sit down and hold on ) an 8 Billion $ industry. What part of that is Vinyl? Probably not enough to add a decimal point fractional percentage.

I'd love to see a Successful Vinyl business model like we had back in the Linn days but we'd need to eliminate Apple and Google to get there. It'll help if we could wipe out the darned Internet and make CDs and digital Illegal.

Now-a-dayz I only have pleasant dreams of Koetsu and Monster Cable Reference Series & Linn Saras.

Tony in Michigan

Jceaves's picture

I have some older inexpensive Rega speakers currently used as place keepers in my system (pending speakers on order), and they came with spikes and metal "cups" to protect the floor. I have cement floors, and they are good reinforcement for bass. After reading this column and a similar article on another site, I removed them and set the speakers directly on the floor. Immediately, I noticed a huge change in the lower frequency response: markedly deeper, more impactful, and tuneful further down the frequency band. It also seemed more controlled. My speakers on order are Shindo 604's, so they have built in legs and a down firing port, but when I move the Rega's back to the bedroom system, they'll go directly on the floor.

adrianwu's picture

I guess we all believe in some universal truths, which tends to accumulate as time goes on. Here is a list of "principles" I try to adhere to in my system (mostly DIY), in order of perceived importance:

1. No passive loudspeaker crossovers. The difference I experienced is like night and day. Either use an active crossover and multi-amp, or use full range drivers (more compromises).
2. Horn transducers, at least for the mid and treble. I have yet to find any dynamic or planar drivers that can match the macro- and micro-dynamics of horn drivers, as well as the low distortion. Electrostatics come close, but lacks sensitivity and macro-dynamic capabilities.
3. Use class A, low powered, no feedback amplifiers with high sensitivity drivers. Using high powered amps in order to drive low-sensitivity speakers is non-sensical. The idea is to generate music, not heat. Using parallel output configurations (transistors or tubes) will invariably lead to a loss of fine detail since it is impossible to have identically matched components.
4. No electrolytic capacitors, at least in the signal path, but preferably in the power supply also. This might be harder to implement in solid state equipment.
5. Balanced, differential circuitry and of course connections. Some people will just as vehemently argue against it, but my experience suggests balanced is vastly superior as long as it is implemented properly.
6. All signal wiring should be done with solid core wire or foil with the thinnest diameter possible. My system is entirely wired with 30AWG teflon coated pure silver wire. With 14 meters of balanced interconnects, the grand total cost comes to $500 (plus a couple of sunday afternoons).
7. Lemo connectors are the best. Change XLR to Lemo if you can on store-bought equipment, after warranty expires (if you keep your equipment that long !). Forget about boutique RCA connectors. Any RCA is a waste of time.
8. Only use shielded cables if you have RF noise problems. Going balanced will usually take care of most noise problems.

JohnMichael's picture

I have only recently focused on this article in an older issue of Stereophile and I am glad I did. I was good on the first two and I am ordering the Wiremold power strip for number 3.

My rack is horizontal in design, solid maple and Amish built. It weighs a lot and is very solid. My Sony XA5400ES SACD player and highly modded Rega turntable are on the top shelf. The next shelf is my Krell S-300i integrated amp with my Marantz SA 8001 SACD player. I noticed a reduction in noise when my components were first placed on this stand.

I am not currently using any metal spikes but I did begin spiking components back in the Mod Squad Tip Toes days. I must admit that my Focal stands have metal feet for the speaker stands but they do not pierce carpet. They certainly do not make contact with the floor below the carpet. I think they are fairly benign.

Reading about the power strip caused me to become curious about the filtered and surge protected power strip I had. When I received the Sony SACD player I routinely plugged it into the current strip. After really reading the article I decided to pull the plug and replug into an outlet at the opposite side of the room where the Krell and power strip had been plugged in to that outlet. I was amazed at the sonic improvement just from the limitations of the filtered and protected power strip. I am looking forward to any further improvements from having all plugged into the power strip.

Glad I reread the article. Thanks Art.